MaxPass Vs. Digital FastPass at Disneyland
There have been so many changes and evolutions happening at Disneyland over the last few years, including the roll-out of both the digital FastPass system and MaxPass program. If you are still not sure what the difference is read on to learn. The fact that Disneyland Resort is always changing and evolving to make it as magical as possible is one of the main reasons it sets itself apart from other theme parks. Walt Disney was clear is his visions for continual evolution and change and it seems the parks are staying true in that respect.
Disneyland Resort rolled out two systems in the last couple years: The digital FastPass and the MaxPass program. The digital FastPass replaced the old paper FastPass while the MaxPass program is an optional add-on meant to enhance the FastPass experience.
FastPass is 100% FREE and included in the cost of your Disneyland Resort Park Tickets. There are no additional charges to use the FastPass perk throughout Disneyland and Disney California Adventure Park.
MaxPass, however, is an optional service that you can choose to pay for. It is currently priced at $20 per person per day (prices are always subject to change.) It is not automatically included with your ticket and will need to be purchased via the Disneyland app when you are in the park. It’s important to note that you do not have to purchase it for every day of your ticket. Instead, you can pick and choose which days – if any – you would like to add it to your ticket.
FastPass - you’ll need to visit each ride’s FastPass kiosk. Here, you’ll scan your phone or insert your park ticket and the FastPass will be digitally connected to it. Time reminder slips very similar to the old paper FastPass tickets are being printed at some ride locations, but that may be fully discontinued once the digital FastPass system has been implemented digitally at every applicable attraction.
MaxPass - The biggest value of the MaxPass is having the convenience to book FastPasses from your mobile device withing having to visit each ride location. You can even schedule a FastPass for a ride in Disney California Adventure while in Disneyland, or vice versa. If you are in the parks, you’ll be able to schedule a FastPass on the Disneyland app with MaxPass. You'll still be able to select one at a time. The Disneyland app will show you the current return times for FastPass attractions. Please note availability is not guaranteed for specific rides.
You will want to have a smart phone with the Disneyland app installed on at least one phone in your group. Having the Disneyland app itself is a great tool to maximize your time in the parks and it’s completely free to use. You can make restaurant reservations; utilize the mobile ordering feature at quick service locations, check current wait times and so much more.
FastPass - The digital FastPass system doesn’t currently require a smart phone to use. All it takes is your Disneyland ticket and the FastPass kiosk machines at FastPass enabled rides. You can scan your smart phone to redeem digital a FastPass. To use this feature, you will need to make sure your ticket is scanned into the Disneyland app to link it. You still will not be able to schedule your FastPasses on the app without paying for MaxPass, but will be able to keep track of and redeem any FastPasses you have scheduled at the kiosks.
MaxPass - A smart phone with an updated Disneyland app is required to use MaxPass. The app is where you will link your ticket and select your FastPasses when using MaxPass. Only one smart phone is needed per party to use MaxPass. Just scan every ticket into the app and you’ll be good to go. The opposite – having multiple people in your party with smart phones – works as well. All you have to do is scan your ticket into your phone and anyone else’s phone who may be scheduling FastPasses that day. This doesn’t allow you to hold multiple FastPasses but will connect everyone.
FastPass - Now that you have a FastPass, you’ll need to know how to redeem it depending on which system you’re using. Have a digital FastPass? Simply take your park ticket to the ride and scan it at the FastPass entrance. Remember to scan your park ticket and not the FastPass time reminder – only the ticket will be accepted for entry into the FastPass line. You can also scan your phone if you have linked your ticket to the Disneyland app.
MaxPass - MaxPass users will also head to the ride’s FastPass entrance. However, they have two options. They can either scan their phone (once for everyone in the party) or the park ticket that is connected to MaxPass on the Disneyland app. This makes it great for families with older kids. If you’re all together, just have the phone holder scan their phone for each rider. Letting the kids have a bit of freedom? They can scan their park ticket instead to redeem the FastPass you made for them in the app earlier. Either way, don’t forget to schedule your next FastPass on the app while standing in line!
We’ve seen a bit of confusion on this aspect of the digital FastPass and MaxPass as well. Both systems will draw from the same pool of FastPasses. They both also have the same guideline of only selecting one FastPass at a time. Both your digital FastPass reminder and MaxPass will tell you when your next FastPass reservation will be available.
Besides the cost and need for a smart phone, there’s something else to consider when looking at Disneyland’s digital FastPass versus MaxPass. When you purchase MaxPass, you get more than just the ability to book FastPasses on your phone. You also get unlimited downloads of any PhotoPass pictures snapped on the day you’re using MaxPass. That means you won't just save time on FastPass retrieval - you’ll also have even more picture proof of all the fun you had on your Disneyland vacation.
The digital FastPass system does not include PhotoPass. However, PhotoPass can be purchased separately from Disneyland directly. Prices vary based on whether you purchase it per day or per week. If you do not purchase PhotoPass, you are still welcome to use the PhotoPass photographers. They are usually more than happy to snap a picture with your own camera or phone.
The most important things to remember:
Digital FastPasses are free and included with every Disneyland ticket. MaxPass costs $20 per person per day and is a completely optional service.
MaxPass allows you to schedule your FastPasses via the Disneyland app. If using the digital FastPass system, you will have to go to each FastPass kiosk and insert your ticket for the FastPass to be added to it.
You will need a smart phone with the Disneyland app
The MaxPass and Digital FastPass system will draw from the same pool of FastPasses.
Digital FastPasses do not include PhotoPass. MaxPass users will have access to unlimited PhotoPass downloads for any PhotoPass pictures taken during the day they paid for the service.
Attractions and Shows available for FastPass:
· Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
· Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters
· “it’s a small world” Holiday
· Roger Rabbit’s Car Toon Spin
· Star Tours – The Adventures Continue
Disney California Adventure Park
· Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: BREAKOUT!
· Guardians of the Galaxy – Monsters After Dark
· Monsters, Inc. Mike & Sulley to the Rescue!
Frequently Asked Questions (not covered above)
Q: Can I make more than one FASTPASS reservation with MaxPass?
A: The rules for FASTPASS apply for MaxPass. After making a FASTPASS reservation in the Disneyland app, you'll be informed of the time at which you can make another reservation. For example, if it's 9:00 AM, and the return time for a ride is at 10:40 AM, the next time you can make a reservation in the Disneyland app is 10:40 AM. It is more convenient for MaxPass users as they can immediately reserve another FastPass when they get in line. Free FAstpass users would need to get through the attraction, get to the next ride in order to reserve the next time.
Q: Can you make World of Color or Fantasmic! FASTPASS reservations with MaxPass?
A: Yes. You can reserve MaxPasses for both of these shows using Disney's app. If you book a MaxPass for one or both of these shows you can also immediately reserve a time for another attraction in either park.
Haven’t experienced either the MaxPass or digital FastPass system at Disneyland yet? That means you need to book your next Disneyland vacation! I can help you with that!!