Disney MaxPass Review: Is it worth it?

If you’ve been paying attention to anything new from Disney, you’ve probably heard of MaxPass. What is MaxPass? Basically, for an extra $10 a day you get to use FASTPASS from your phone and, the most important thing to note, you get all of your photos from your trip too. The question is: is it worth it?

(Below is the info on it through my eyes and my quick notes, scroll to the bottom for the conclusion if that’s all you’d like to read.)Here is the official verbiage from their site:

  • Save time in line at popular attractions by making Disney FASTPASS selections on your mobile device using the Disneyland app while you’re in the parks. Guests with Park Hopper Tickets can even make selections for attractions in our other theme park.
  • Capture all of your memories with unlimited Disney PhotoPass photo downloads for a day. Download and share photos from select dining locations, attractions, Character Greetings, Disney PhotoPass Photographers and Magic Shots.

Disney MaxPass is available for the low introductory price of only $10 per day, per ticket—so you can experience more of the park with the people you love!

Less than a month ago I was in Disneyland for a week and I used this feature for the entirety of that week. Before I went I was speculative on this. How easy is it? Is it worth the money? Is there a shortcut? How can this work in different ways for different situations? Let’s just say that I was insanely impressed on how easy it was to setup and use.

AND – I will be using the MaxPass feature every-single-time I go to the park from now on, whether I use all of the features or not. What does that mean? We will get to that.

How does it happen? Here is what you do:

  1. Download/Open the Disneyland app.
  2. Tap the circular character icon at the bottom of the screen.
  3. Sign in with your Disney account.
  4. Tap “Get FASTPASS with Disney MaxPass.”
  5. Link your ticket(s) by taking a picture of the bar code on your ticket(s).
  6. Select the guests in your party whom you wish to use the Disney MaxPass feature.
  7. Complete the purchase the feature for you (or your party).

Now you are good to go. Sounds simple right?A Disneyland trip is already really expensive; tickets, hotel, travel, food, merchandise — it isn’t cheap. This $10 a day per ticket can really add up depending the size of your party.

If you are there with your significant other for a two-day visit, it’s not too much more to add to your trip, what’s another $40? If you are there with friends, what’s another $10 on your ticket, not a big deal. The problem comes into light when your a family of 5 staying at the park for 3-5 days. Your talking another $150-$250 depending on the length of your stay. Is that worth it?

Let me tell you, opening up the app and picking your next FASTPASS without walking there is a huge time saver, and since you run around the park all day this also saves your feet. The time management is insane, standing in line and getting your next FASTPASS ready is a must-have. You can even get in more rides in every day, who wouldn’t want that?

BUT — Do you know what’s really worth the money? The photos.Here is how you link your photos:

  • For professional use: ask any of the Disney Photographers to scan the code on your phone. Yes, this means all of the ones you see standing around. (In front of the castle, all the best landmarks, or anywhere you’d like.) After they scan your code and take the photos they will be added to your account included in your MaxPass! (Be sure to also link your Disney PhotoPass card to your Disney account. It’s self explanatory)
  • For all those ride photos: “Enter the ID code for attraction photos in the Disneyland app.” You know those screens where everyone is taking crappy pictures when you get off the ride? Just take a picture of that number really quick and type it in later, or just open the app and type in the number before the photo goes away. I recommend taking photos of the number and typing them in when you get back to the hotel, more on that later.

That’s the gist of it. You get FASTPASS on your phone and all the photos you want.

Conclusion

This idea is genius, no more walking across the park to get FASTPASS’, just do it on your phone. You can set up all the biggest rides in the park at the times you want to, which allows you to manage and maximize your time. At a place with big crowds and a lot of walking, this is a must!

Now, what’s the trick?

$10 a ticket per day isn’t much if it’s just you, or if you have a small family, but what about big groups and large families? Like I mentioned above, a multi-day pass makes it expensive if your a family of 5 staying at the park for 3-5 days. Your talking another $150-$250 depending on the length of your stay. Is that worth it?

The short answer is yes, but the long answer is no. If you’re on a budget, go to Disneyland the way you always do, stay in that comfortable lane you’ve always been in. If you want to make it special and test it out, give it a try for one day during your trip so you can understand how it works, and see if the benefit is worth it to you.

Having talked to multiple sets of people, everyone goes about Disneyland differently; strategies, secret spots, places to stand for the fireworks… it’s crazy how everyone goes about the park. Simply look at it this way, if you enter Disneyland right when it opens, which way to do you go? Left, right or up the middle? Do you hit the big rides first?

That can create arguments all on it’s own. Everyone has the ‘best’ way and usually won’t share it either. I have a spot for the fireworks that’s dead empty, every time…. and you get to sit down too, but I’m never telling you where that is.

The point I’m getting at is; no matter how you go about the park, this MaxPass will only enhance the way you go about Disneyland. Whatever you do, how you do it, when you do it — this pass will make it better and more convenient.What’s the alternative if you can’t afford it or don’t have any interest in it?

The number one thing I have been telling my friends and family that think “more money in Disney’s pocket” is, just have one person get it for the pictures. If your at the park for 3-5 days, that’s an extra $30-$50 to get EVERY SINGLE PHOTO you want for your ENTIRE party for your ENTIRE trip. Just one day? $10 and you get all the photos.

Just have one person pay for the MaxPass each day and then have that person put in all the ID numbers of the photos for everyone. This way you can share them with everyone and only one person has to pay for it, instead of every individual.

That means every ride that takes a picture, you get that photo in high quality. It also means that you can use every single park photographer at the park, so you can get the perfect family photos at the best photo locations. See your favorite character with an attached photographer? Have them scan your phone and then you get all the shots without having to worry about asking someone to take a picture for you.  No more bad quality cell-phone shots!

Here’s what I did when it came to getting the photos:

It’s pretty annoying to pull out your phone, open the app and then sit there in front of the screen and type in the ID numbers you want into your phone. You might go fast and mess up, time might run out and your photo may be replaced…. you get the picture. Instead hop of the ride and take a really quick, fast picture of the photo like everyone else does.

Once your day is over and you are back at the hotel, just sit down, write down all the numbers of all your photos and then enter them one by one in the app. You have 24 hours to enter them in after you activate your day — plenty of time. See that one great photo of your family and you want to share it right away? Hop in the next line and type in the number while your waiting. You can do it how you want, I would recommend taking a picture of the number so you always have it on your phone. You wouldn’t want to lose it.

Here’s an example, I hoped off the ride and took quick photos of the screen:I then put the numbers in later and got the High-Resolution photos to share with everyone:In the end, this is something that isn’t a necessary — except for one thing, the photos! If I told you $10 a day for your entire party meant you got every single photo in High-Resolution to share and keep forever…. who wouldn’t want that? The simplest thing I can say about this is forget everything attached to MaxPass, just have one person pay in your group, get all the photos and then share them with everyone. Very simple and worth it.

Hope that helped any questions, comment below if you agree/disagree or have more questions.

Cheers,

Matt.