When you go to Disney World, you anticipate spending money on souvenirs, snacks, and meals, and you may wonder what payment methods are accepted on property.
Fortunately, there are many ways for you to pay at Walt Disney World theme parks and Disney resort hotels.
Disney Dollars are money printed by Disney that can be used in Walt Disney World Resort, Disneyland Resort, and Disney Store. They are available in denominations of $1, $5, and $10.
Disney Dollars were available for purchase between 1987 and 2016 at Guest Relations locations and in the resorts. Although you can’t purchase the dollars on property anymore, you can find them for inflated costs online, and they are still accepted in the parks.
With the introduction of the MagicBand as part of Disney’s multibillion-dollar MyMagic+ project, the Disney Dollars were phased out. This most magical payment method is also the easiest.
As part of your online check-in to your Disney Resort Hotel, you can place a credit card on file before you even arrive in Disney World. Once your MagicBand is connected to your MyDisneyExperience account, you can use it to make purchases in all four theme parks, both water parks, hundreds of quick-service and table-service restaurants, and many stores in Disney Springs.
All you have to do is hold your MagicBand “Mickey to Mickey” until the Mickey on the reader turns green. It works with RFID technology.
The nice thing about this form of payment is that you can charge as much as you want (up to $500 per day without verifying your card), and you’ll pay for everything at the end of your stay. You can authorize the payment on the card on file, or you can pay with another payment method. Regardless, the benefit is that you only make one transaction rather than several small ones, which can be hard to track on your credit card. Of course, the negative is that it can be very easy to lose track of how much you’ve spent!
Key to the Kingdom
After Disney Dollars, Disney created a plastic card they called Key to the Kingdom because it unlocked everything you needed for your vacation. It was not only your room key, but it also held your park ticket and your credit card on file to make purchases.
Unlike Disney Dollars, which have been discontinued, Key to the Kingdom is still available. It works very similarly to the MagicBand, but the MagicBand is only available for free to Disney Resort Hotel guests. Park visitors staying off property must purchase a MagicBand, but they are provided a Key to the Kingdom card for free.
ApplePay was the first form of contactless payment accepted in Disney World on December 24th, 2014. Any iPhone user with an iPhone 6/6+ or later can use ApplePay to make purchases in Disney World.
All you do is set up your credit or debit card(s) on your phone then use your fingerprint to verify point of sale purchases at the cash register. Interestingly, this option is also available for online purchases at Disney World’s website as well as the Disney Store online.
On the same day that ApplePay became available, Disney also began accepting Google Wallet.
Android Pay & Samsung Pay
Android Pay and Samsung Pay first became available in mid-2015. It is almost a clone of ApplePay and works very similarly.
Cash is accepted anywhere in the United States including in and around Walt Disney World. However, many folks don’t carry a lot of cash these days – especially on vacation – since it can easily be lost or stolen.
It’s always convenient to have some cash though especially for tipping, and not all taxis accept credit cards.
All major credit cards including Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Discover, and Disney Visa are accepted forms of payment in Walt Disney World. Disney World also accepts Diners Club Card, and Japan Credit Bureau.
You can use these credit cards to make purchases or you can use them as your card on file for your MagicBand or your Key to the Kingdom.
Disney Gift Cards
Disney Gift Cards are also a good form of payment with some benefits. You can purchase gift cards at a variety of locations including grocery stores, gas stations, and discount stores like Target and Walmart. If you purchase gift cards from a location that offers fuel points or cash back, you can double dip on benefits.
Gift Cards prevent you from having to carry a lot of cash, but they don’t have any kind of protection if lost or stolen like a credit card. However, gift cards make it easy to budget money. If you purchase your souvenir budget in gift cards, once the gift cards are gone, you know you must stop buying souvenirs. You can also save gift cards on your MyDisneyExperience account and use your MagicBand to make purchases.
How do you pay for purchases in Disney World: Cash, Credit, MagicBand, Gift Cards, Apple Pay, or something else?