Disney Parks’ Mobile Payments Operation Proves a Hit

February 15, 2019         By: Steven Anderson

It is hard not to recommend that everyone, at some point in their life, should see a Disney park at least once. It may be ultra-expensive, and difficult to reach—a Disney park may be multiple thousands of miles away—but the experience is one that’s well worth having. Despite the difficulty and expense, Disney parks are constantly improving and adding facets of the experience that improve the value. Recently, Disney added mobile payments and mobile order-ahead capability, and it’s proved a winner thus far.

Disney reportedly rolled out the service to its Disney Parks Moms Panelists, who noted that the program was “a game changer,” and one widely embraced by the panel. For one panelist, who went only by the name “Missy”, who noted that hungry kids no longer needed to wait in line and frantically change their minds about desired food over the course of that wait. Now, the new system allows orders to be placed at the customer’s discretion, then with a simple button press in the My Disney Experience app—the “I’m here” button, reportedly—the order is quickly prepared and brought out.

While the system isn’t available everywhere—reports note “over 20” quick service locations in the four theme parks and the Disney Springs area—for those places it can be used, “Missy” refers to the entire experience as “easy peasy,” which suggests that it’s almost surprisingly simple to use.  

This suggests a limited rollout, which isn’t exactly the best news, but is certainly a good first step. “Over 20” suggests between 21 and 24, because if it were 25, they would have said so. That’s spread out over five different regions, which means an average of five or fewer outlets in each region. That’s going to take quite a bit of walking to find the one needle in a stack of needles that takes mobile payments. Still, it’s clear they couldn’t do this all at once, and as a shakedown cruise, this is a good start.

If Disney can expand this fairly rapidly, especially to all the quick-service places in the park, it should end quite well. Disney has to keep innovating to keep its massive expenses from daunting too many potential customers, and it’s measures like these that will keep buying tickets to the park an easy peasy decision.