Magic Bands are kind of a big deal. They’re your room key, meal ticket, park admission, purchasing token, and FastPass er, pass.
When the Magic Band 2 was announced in December, I was not excited. The new bands looked huge and bulky. Not sleek or advanced. The internet was abuzz about the newest feature: a “puck” that could be removed from the band, placed into a keychain/lanyard, or simply carried in a pocket. Oh great, a huge magic band with a piece to worry about losing. Yay.
I have an unusually small wrist, and the original bands felt really thick during wear. The thinner 1.5 bands were better, but they’d never say right-side-up. I don’t like to peel the gray edge off of my bands to make them child-sized because 1) it often removes a good bit of the graphics and 2) I’m weird. Still, any issues with magic band versions 1 and 1.5 were super minor and easy to live with. Just having one at all felt novel and exciting.
Also, I should also mention that I’ve wanted one of the special “lights and sounds*” limited edition magic bands for at least a year. Many have been released, and I’ve been excited about very few of them. Of course, there was one I was thrilled about (hello, Halloween!) but they sold out before I could get one.
But then, one evening while perusing the Disney Springs pin station, I caught sight of a red magic band with a dog on it behind the counter. Whaaaaat a special band with a dog on it! Turned out to be the Valentine’s Day 2017 magic band, complete with Lady and the Tramp slurping a plate of spaghetti. OH EM GOODNESS. If there are three things I can’t resist, they are dogs, spaghetti, and magic bands with special lights and sounds involving love/dogs/spaghetti.
But it was a Magic Band 2. Nooo. Still… dogs. Spaghetti. Valentine’s Day. Such anguish! My husband pulled up a YouTube video of the magic band at a park entrance point, and… rainbow-y flashes and Bella Notte? Sold!
These are the major differences in wear/feel I notice:
– overall, 2 is lighter and thinner
– The “puck” is actually screwed in, so there’s no need to worry about it falling out
– 2 is more comfortable. In addition to being lighter and thinner, the puck-shape ensures it doesn’t swivel around my wrist. I never realized how amazing it would be to have a magic band stay in place.
I doubt I’ll ever put my puck into a keychain, as I kind of like the fun of a festive band on my wrist. Added bonus: I always know where it is. I’m not super thrilled for the inevitable moment I get stuck behind someone who can’t locate their puck.
So yes, I was totally wrong about Magic Band 2. They might look a bit different, but the noticeable difference in comfort, thickness, and weight is totally worth it. Plus… dogs/spaghetti/special lights and sounds. You can’t really top that.
*Magic bands with special lights and sounds are typically limited edition and come in boxes (they’re usually behind the counters in the shops). Instead of your touch point lighting up green and making a loud ding, it will light up whatever color and make whatever sound is associated with that particular band. Some bands will only work at particular parks (like the Kylo Ren band at Hollywood Studios) or particular touch points (one of the Haunted Mansion bands would only do special lights/sounds at the Haunted Mansion FastPass touchpoint.)