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“Universal Tee Shirt Days?” Disney World Becoming More Confusing for Annual Passholders

are reservations too confusing for disney world annual passholders
Credit: Disney/ Canva

While Reservations at any of Walt Disney World’s four theme parks are now a thing of the past for day-ticket holders, for Disney World Annual Passholders, things are becoming even more confusing.

disney world annual passholder

Credit: Disney

On January 11, Walt Disney World will include updates to their current reservation system, including what they call “good-to-go” days for their Annual Passholders. Sounds nice, right? Well, maybe not.

As the current theme park reservation system is currently going away for day guests, Annual Passholders will still be held to the same standards as the post-COVID crowd at the Most Magical Place on Earth.

Related: It’s Back! Beloved Disney World Park Service Finally Returns

If it isn’t a “good-to-go” day, passholders will not forgo the Disney Park Pass system and must continue to utilize reservations and observe typical park hopping options.

In a Park Hopper/ reservation system that was already confusing for some, things may be becoming a bit muddier for Annual Passholders who must now check their My Disney Experience app for “good-to-go” days if they’d like to jump from park to park at their own leisure.

DeSantis monorail inspection

Credit: Disney

From the official Disney Parks blog,

“In 2024, resolve to be more spontaneous with “good-to-go” days for Annual Passholders! As Passholders prepare for their visits next year, we wanted to share more about how good-to-go days will work:

    • On good-to-go days, Annual Passholders may enter the theme parks without needing a reservation (blockout dates will continue to apply like they do today).
    • The theme park reservation calendar, Annual Passholder admissions calendar, and My Disney Experience app will show days that are good to go. The first good-to-go days will be added to the calendars starting Jan. 11, 2024.
    • Good-to-go days will be added periodically and may be released days or weeks in advance.”

Not confusing enough yet? Well, let’s take a look at what that park reservation calendar will look like, shall we?

In an effort to still monitor and control park crowds, Disney World is going the extra mile to add as many features to their park reservation calendar as possible, or at least it seems that way.

Related: The BIG Change Happening in Disney World TODAY!

For example, if an Annual Passholder wants to visit Magic Kingdom and park hop over for lunch at EPCOT, they’ll have to ensure there is a park reservation and wait until after 2 PM or that it is a good-to-go day. It’s an additional step in an already faulty and foggy process.

We all probably understand the reasoning here; it isn’t uncommon for local APs to visit a park for a quick bite and ride and then head home. You’ve got to beat that I-4 traffic, after all. Annual Passholders probably don’t spend as much money at theme parks like Magic Kingdom, EPCOT, Animal Kingdom, and Hollywood Studios when compared to day guests, but it still feels odd that guests so loyal to Disney World that they’d buy an annual pass have to jump through proverbial hoops just to understand if they’re allowed to visit that day or not?

Disney Annual Passholder gifts

Credit: Disney

Combined with blackout dates, no park reservations to Magic Kingdom on Saturdays, and a plethora of other barriers, hanging out at that park down the road seems more reasonable and less stressful nowadays. Of course, this is only my opinion, but as many X users echo the sentiment, poking fun at Disney World’s new system for Annual Passholders, we have to ask, “Why is it becoming so confusing?”

Professor Leisure gets it! Jokingly, this X user highlights the perceived ridiculousness in Disney’s newest reservation system, and how dysfunctional it is for Annual Passholders to use.

I mean, really, we just want to hit up Disney Springs for some trending merchandise and pop into Magic Kingdom for a quick churro and ride on Pirates of the Caribbean, then we’re out of your hair. Does it have to be this complicated to ensure we can do that?

Related: Walt Disney World Resort Reportedly Cancels Entire Evening of Reservations

Don’t get me wrong, we get it. Ultimately, Disney is in the business of moving people to spend cash. Annual Passholders don’t drop thousands in one day at theme parks like typical day guests do, but where’s the loyalty? Although our trips aren’t your typical “Disney vacation,” we still spend a lot of money each year in the parks, and most of us are blackouted for long periods of time.

With price hikes certainly coming, the current Annual Passholders are already confused enough as it is. Each level, Disney Pixie Dust Pass, Disney Incredi-Pass, Disney Pirate Pass, and Disney Sorcerer Pass, already have to deal with a lot to visit their beloved theme parks.

minnie mouse standing in front of cinderella castle, annual passholder logo in the corner

Credit: Disney, Canva

Note the word beloved! The adoration that most Annual Passholders share for Walt Disney World is why they’re passholders in the first place, but now it seems while visiting our favorite place is becoming easier for everyone else, we’re stuck navigating confusing systems and picking out days where we can visit without liberty. Isn’t that the point of a pass? To go whenever you want?

Opinions in this article are solely that of the author’s and do not depict the beliefs and attitudes of The Walt Disney Company or Disney Dining as a whole.

About Michael Arnold

Michael is a father, husband, and an Army Veteran. Michael spends his weekends at Walt Disney World and Universal Orlando checking out new merchandise and food. Michael is a graduate of the University of Alabama and has an education background in Public Health. You can find Michael riding Pirates of the Caribbean over and over again or binge watching new Marvel and Star Wars content. Han shot first. Thor is the strongest Avenger. Roll Tide and Wash Your Hands!

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