End of Extra Magic Hours? Disney Introduces Paid Disney After Hours Event

Inside The Magic – It looks like Disney has just announced a new paid after hours event called “Disney After Hours”, and it may very will be worth your time! With this new program, guests will be able to buy a ticket and that will grant them access to The Magic Kingdom for three hours after the park closes — this includes select attractions and meet & greets.

Tickets for this new opportunity will go on sale April 6th for select dates in April and May only. Dates of the events are April 14th, 21st, 28th, and May 5th, 8th, 12th, & 19th. This may be your chance to wander around the park with a limited group of people and get onto rides much faster. The only problem is, I would imagine ticket sales will be extremely limited, so you might want to jump on this.

Tickets are $149 plus tax each for children or adults. For more info, check out Walt Disney World’s official site.

Michael Scott

It’s happening, whether we’d like to admit it or not… Extra Magic Hours are ending. The writing has been on the wall for some time now, with a noticeable decrease in Extra Magic Hours.

We really saw the difference this past Christmas. Our first few years, Extra Magic Hours were a regular occurrence. It happened almost every night – you’d find yourself choosing between the parks. Then Disney started hosting nighttime Extra Magic Hours at one park per day. This was understandable. It couldn’t possibly keep running Extra Magic Hours at every park every night. Plus, it made the decision much easier. But two years ago the amount of hours decreased and this past year, they were almost nonexistent.

And now, news of a special “paid event” breaks. Obviously, Disney doesn’t do anything by coincidence. Just like the upcoming “free quick service dining” could very well be a test to see if they can do away with Free Dining, this is a test to see how willing guests are to pay for Extra Magic Hours.

Extra Magic Hours is the number one perk to staying on-site. Especially during peak and overly crowded times, it gives on-site guests the opportunity to experience their favorite attractions at a reduced wait time. Not only this, but it’s a pretty amazing experience. My sister and I have had some of our best talks and memories roaming Magic Kingdom at 2am. I’ve captured some of my favorite photos late at night when everyone else has gone home. Those experiences and memories were sorely missed this past trip. I remember checking every day leading up to our trip for those coveted late-night Extra Magic Hours. “They’ll add them when we get there” I reassured my family. They never did.

I normally don’t complain about Disney’s cuts. I didn’t mind the character cut, the tiered pricing is just business… but the Extra Magic Hours are one of the unique selling points to staying on-site at a Disney resort. For guests like my family that don’t spend a ton of time at the hotel, the Extra Magic Hours is the main selling point. And, if Disney takes away the main selling point, what’s to keep us from staying off-site and saving a couple hundred dollars a night?

It’s easy to jump to conclusions. The truth is, this is all speculation. There’s no doubting that the amount of Extra Magic Hours has significantly decreased and the news of a paid “event” is certainly bright red writing on the wall. I doubt Disney will ever confirm Extra Magic Hours ending, but it wouldn’t surprise me to see a slow and steady phase out.

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One thought on “End of Extra Magic Hours? Disney Introduces Paid Disney After Hours Event

  1. This last winter (Christmas/ New Years) was my first visit where we decided to stay off-property. I really thought that I would miss the on-site perks like the magic hours and I was surprised when it wasn’t a big deal. Honestly, other than the amazing theming of the property hotels, I didn’t miss much about staying on site. It was just my husband and myself, so we maybe have felt differently if we had taken the kids ( taking breaks midday), but with just the two of us, we did a few early mornings and a few late nights, just staying for half days. We visited when the parks were the busiest, but using the fast pass plus system, we had no problems doing everything that we wanted. I was so surprised that staying off-site was okay for me. I still had a completely magical vacation, with plenty of Disney.

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