So, what is this Extra Magic Hour and Magic Mornings thing Disneyland has going on? One of the biggest pieces of advice I got when planning our Disneyland trip was to get. there. early. What we had been told and later learned for ourselves is that Disneyland gets busier as it gets later in the day. So getting to the Parks as early as possible was a must.
This brought us to the next question. How early can you arrive? Well, I guess the answer to that is, it depends.
And this is where Magic Morning and Extra Magic Hour come into play. Magic Morning is a perk that you will receive when you purchase a 3-day or longer Park ticket. You are allowed to enter Disneyland one hour early one morning that you are there. It is only good for one morning and it is only good at Disneyland on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays unless otherwise noted. Only certain attractions are open during this time, so its not like you have the entire Park to yourself during this time, just certain parts of it.
Extra Magic Hour is a perk that guests staying at the Disneyland Resort Hotels receive for staying on property. It is good at both Parks but not on the same days. It is good at Disney California Adventure on Sundays, Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays and Disneyland Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays unless otherwise noted.
The biggest difference between these two perks is how you get them. The Extra Magic Hour is available only to resort guests, whereas Magic Morning is tied directly to the type of ticket you purchase.
The other big difference is that Disneyland California Adventure is only available for early access through the Extra Magic Hour perk. So only resort guests will be able to get into one of the most popular areas of the Parks, Cars Land, early.
We did both since we stayed on property for part of our stay and I have to say I much preferred the Extra Magic Hour over the Magic Morning. The fact that anyone with a 3-day ticket can get into Disneyland along with the resort guests on the same days, makes it a lot more crowded than you would hope.
We were able to do two rides during the Magic Morning hour, one of which was Peter Pan, and I am eternally grateful for that as the line the rest of the day never fell below 75 minutes. And trust me when I say, the Disneyland Peter Pan is much cooler than Walt Disney World’s, so you will want to experience it.
My suggestion to get the best out of either perk is to get there as early as possible. If your Magic Morning starts at 8, get there by 7:30. We were able to get in about 15 minutes earlier than we had expected because they started letting people in early.
You will also deal with much less wait time for security and at the turnstiles if you’re there before everyone else.
Either way, being in a less crowded than usual Disney Park of any kind is always magical so I highly recommend experiencing whatever perks you do get.
That being said, I wouldn’t recommend staying on property just for the Extra Magic Hour perk. Disneyland hotels are crazy expensive, and its not really worth(in my opinion) spending that much extra just for one extra hour of Park time. Totally my opinion…..but if you are staying there, its definitely a nice perk to have!
And for the days that you don’t have an Extra Magic Hour or Magic Morning, I highly recommend visiting the Park that is not offering the Perk that day and getting there as soon as possible. You never know when the Cast Members might let you in a little early:)