It takes more than faith, trust or pixie dust to navigate Disney’s theme parks. But navigating these parks is no longer a fantasy. And I think Walt himself, would be beaming over the use of technology in his parks. Although, I’m guessing that he envisioned them being utilized at Epcot’s Future World rather than the Magic Kingdom’s Fantasy Land.
I had a chance to put some of the top three Disney Apps at Walt Disney World including Verizon’s Mobile Magic (now free to Verizon users) to the test.
Here’s some the top three FREE Disney Apps available.
1. iTunes Disney World Wait Times: This by far was the biggest time-saver and was used throughout our day at Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom and Epcot. It’s free and available to download on iTunes. Mostly, this just breaks down the wait times before you venture over to staple rides such as Splash Mountain, Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Adventure and of course, Space Mountain. It is also compatible with the ever-popular ipad2, but who wants to walk around the park with such a large and pricey piece of technology? Instead, just download this prince of an app on your iphone and plot out your plan of attack. One word of caution: these wait times are only as accurate as the users that update them.
2. Verizon’s Disney Parks Mobile Magic App: What I really liked about this app, was that it was all-inclusive and charted the best course for planning your dining (character dinners included), weather, your current location, park maps, shopping, character greetings, ride wait times, and more! Currently, it is the only free Disney app that can give you the Disney FASTPASS wait times as well. The downside is that it only works on Verizon Android phones. However, I was recently informed that Verizon has plans in the works for creating a free app for Verizon iphone users scheduled to roll out this fall. Another personal downside is HOW much information was packed into this app. Sometimes, you just want to simplify a bit and use your park hopper for its intended use-to hop around at leisure from park to park. That and I had to borrow a friend’s phone, since I am not covered under a Verizon plan.
3. WDW Radio iPhone App: This is perhaps one free Disney app that is the most useful BEFORE planning your trip to any of the Walt Disney Parks. I was not overly impressed with the app itself, but found Lou Mongello’s podcast extremely accurate and informative. Mongello’s podcasts include options on dining, travel, the best hotels, and interviews. However, you may find yourself extremely frustrated by the lack of integration between the app itself and the podcast. For now, you could just use it for what it is -a gateway to Disney magic.