NewsBriefs from Around Our World

Filed in: Current & Upcoming Events, Walt Disney World Resort, What's New, What's Next

More opportunities to soar and enjoy the midway coming to Walt Disney World Resort

Here at Walt Disney Parks & Resorts, we’re always making investments to exceed guest expectations – whether it’s creating new attractions and entertainment or making existing experiences even better. One of the things we’ve heard from our guests is that a visit to Walt Disney World Resort just isn’t complete without enjoying the spectacular views at Soarin’ in Epcot or a spin through Toy Story Mania! at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Both attractions will expand by adding another theater at Soarin’ and more midway track at Toy Story Mania! We’ll also be updating the screens and projection system at Soarin,’ bringing a visually enhanced experience. The expansions are expected to be complete by late 2016, offering even more opportunities for guests to enjoy these beloved attractions during their Walt Disney World Resort vacation.

MyMagic+ Reaches a Milestone – 10 million MagicBands!

The MyMagic+ guest experience has hit a milestone: 10 million MagicBands have tapped their way into the parks and hotels, attractions, shops, parades and shows of Walt Disney World Resort.

Since its debut, the colorful and innovative MagicBand has placed guests’ vacation choices right on their wrist. The MagicBand is the key to unlocking the magic of Disney, connecting guests to all the vacation choices they make – serving as their resort room key, park admission, access to FastPass+ selections, PhotoPass photos and — for guests of Walt Disney World resort hotels – optional payment method for food and merchandise purchases.

The MagicBand helps guests customize their visit to Walt Disney World Resort, creating a vacation that is uniquely theirs. Guests can create and customize their MagicBands before leaving home when they book their Walt Disney World vacation on MyDisneyExperience.com

MagicBands are not only a hit with Disney guests. The MagicBand was singled out among the “26 Coolest Gadgets of 2014” by Fortune Magazine. Fast Company awarded MyMagic+ a coveted “Innovation by Design” honor in 2014.

Contactless payments now accepted at many Disney-operated locations

As part of the ongoing efforts to improve the guest experience, a new form of electronic payment is now being accepted at many Disney-operated merchandise, quick-service food and beverage, outdoor vending, spa and recreation, as well as ticket sales locations throughout Walt Disney World Resort using stationary touch-to-pay devices (stations also used for payments made with MagicBands).

Known as contactless payment, this new form of electronic payment is most commonly associated with mobile apps including Apple Pay, Google Wallet or Softcard, as well as Near Field Communication-enabled (NFC) credit cards. Purchases using contactless payment are made by holding a mobile device or NFC-enabled credit card near the touch point (Mickey head) on stationary touch-to-pay devices.

Contactless payments are planned to be accepted at additional locations throughout Walt Disney World Resort in the future.

New Character Dinner Coming to Disney’s Animal Kingdom March 2015

Beginning March 8, 2015, Donald Duck, Daisy Duck and their friends will welcome guests for a fun-filled character dinner at Tusker House Restaurant at Disney’s Animal Kingdom theme park. “Donald’s Safari Dinner” will offer guests the opportunity to meet some of their favorite characters, including Donald and Daisy* while enjoying a delicious selection of all-you-care-to-enjoy spit-roasted carved meats, unique salads, creative vegetarian offerings, hearty stews, and delicious desserts – all with an African touch.

Guests can make reservations by calling 407-WDW-DINE (3463) or by visiting DisneyWorld.com/dining “Donald’s Safari Dinner” at Tusker House Restaurant will be offered beginning at 4 p.m. daily. In addition to the new character dinner, Tusker House Restaurant will continue to feature Disney characters at breakfast and lunch.

*Characters are subject to change.

Cítricos Welcomes Princesses For Breakfast and Brunch at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa

Disney princesses will welcome guests to Cítricos at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa in early 2015 while Cinderella’s Royal Table in Magic Kingdom Park gets a refresh.

Cinderella will greet guests as they arrive, and the Disney princesses will visit each table for photos and autographs during the dining experience.  Diners also can participate in an interactive “Magical Wishing Ceremony” with Cinderella and the Disney Princesses, with “wishing wands” and “wishing swords” for little ones.

Breakfast and brunch hours are 8 a.m.-2:20 p.m., and cost is $49.99; $31.99 ages 3-9. The experience is on the Disney Dining Plan (2 entitlements). For reservations call 407-WDW-DINE or visit DisneyWorld.com/dining.  Cinderella’s Royal Table is expected to reopen in March, 2015.

Dates Announced for 2015 Epcot International Food & Wine Festival

Epcot International Food & Wine Festival launches Sept. 25 and runs through Nov. 16 this year – 53 days of sweet and savory tapas-sized dishes and beverages, plus tasting seminars, culinary demos, signature dining experiences, live entertainment and more.