On a recent trip to L.A., we had just one day to make our daughter's Disney dreams come true, so it was important to maximize our time there. Although I've probably visited Disney in Orlando and Paris about 20 times, it had been a decade since my last visit to a Disney park and a lot has changed since then. In my opinion the best change by far has been the addition of MaxPass.
What Is MaxPass?
MaxPass basically turbocharges your FastPass so that instead of having to make an in person reservation at a FastPass kiosk, you can do it all from the Disneyland App. I'm sure this saved us miles of walking back-and-forth and enabled us to book as many popular FastPass attractions as possible. How it works is this: on popular designated rides MaxPass enables you to make a reservation on the Disneyland App for a specific return time that lets you skip the long standby ride line and go through the shorter FastPass line.
The other feature of MaxPass is that you get free Photopass downloads directly to your phone. Personally, I didn't want to memorialize the Splash Mountain pic of myself open-mouthed, squinty-eyed and wet ---no matter how much fun it was at the time -- but I can imagine if you were taking a lot of family pictures with characters or feel strongly about preserving your rollercoaster reactions, this feature might be appealing.
FastPass is Free, So Is MaxPass Worth It?
In my opinion, with peak 1-day park tickets costing as much as $149 each, the additional $15 charge per person for MaxPass is a drop in the bucket (granted, a very big bucket). You can always utilize the regular FastPass at no additional charge, but if you are visiting the park during a busy peak day, MaxPass is one of the best ways to maximize the value of your visit. As we progressed through the day I was mentally calculating how much each ride was costing us, and the more rides we made it onto, the lower the cost per ride. All said and done I believe we made it onto 20 rides (about $8 per ride). Without MaxPass, we never could have hit so many rides, including popular ones like the new Star Wars Galaxy's Edge, Indiana Jones Adventure, Thunder Mountain, and Space Mountain.
All that said, MaxPass may NOT be worth the added cost in certain circumstances.
Kid Trips' MaxPass Tips
If your family includes a tight group of agile, tall-enough individuals with similar interests, MaxPass is the best way to maximize the number of popular rides you can get on in one day. There were just four of us on this trip: two parents and a 13 and 15 year old, so we had no trouble arriving early at breakfast time, staying for the fireworks, covering 12 miles, and making it on close to 20 rides. If you have younger kids, more days to spend, and more time to stop and smell the roses, FastPass is more than enough to ensure all your Disney dreams come true. Above all, don't get so addicted to the thrill of the FastPass that you overlook non-FastPass attractions and experiences. Use FastPass to ensure your place on the busiest rides and enjoy the rest of the time for what makes Disneyland special: sentimental old favorites in Fantasy Land, character encounters, memorable meals, and entertaining shows.
Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this blog are entirely my own and do not reflect those of Disneyland. We did not receive any compensation, benefits, or freebies from Disneyland during this trip. All rights reserved to GoKidTrips.com (c) 2019.
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