“Second star to the right and straight on ‘til morning.” We couldn’t say it any better, thanks Peter! With tons of great ways to experience Walt Disney World, from dropping ropes early in the morning, to chugging coffee to stay awake late, there is something for every vacationer, even Disney Vacation Club Members (DVC). One of the lesser known events in the Disney Universe are the DVC Moonlight Magic events. We’ve filled up on caffeine and are ready to go all night, let’s let the moonlight guide our way!
What is it?
The simple explanation is that DVC Moonlight Magic is Disney After Hours with a few extras. On certain nights throughout the year each of the Disney parks (US) remain open after official park closing for DVC members and their guests (up to 3 per member). The events have a very limited number of tickets, and are at no additional cost.
Passholder Insights: Within the DVC universe there are two ways to acquire points, through Disney direct or the resale market. Moonlight Magic is only open to Members who have acquired a minimum of 75 points through Disney direct.
Each event is a little different, but usually follows a similar format. For Moonlight Magic events, Walt Disney World keeps the vast majority of the attractions open, as well as select quick serve dining locations. Each attendee receives a meal voucher for a full meal which includes a non-alcoholic beverage, as well unlimited Mickey Premium bars throughout the night. Brain freeze is included at no additional charge.
Beyond the attractions, the event includes a variety of rare character meet and greets, as well as dance parties! You can catch Serena busting out her best “running man” with the Incredibles! At the end of the night each park includes a special fireworks or nighttime spectacular presentation.
For guests driving, parking is included at no charge after a certain time. Usually, starting at about 3.5 hours prior to the event start time, but you’ll want to check your registration to be certain. All you need to do is show your registration for the event at the entrance
The best part is that no theme park admission is needed even for guests! The DVC Moonlight Magic tickets include park admission up to 3 hours before the event starts. This is very similar to how the Mickey’s Not So Scary and Christmas Party tickets work.
Passholder Insights: One thing we did at the Animal Kingdom Moonlight Magic event was watched the regular showing of Rivers of Light, instead of the event’s showing. The park was “extra” quiet during the event showing!
How Often Do These Occur?
The events are scattered throughout the year, with the majority occurring during the quieter times. Each of the Disney parks (US) outside of the California Adventure have at least one event during the year, with the most events (3) happening at the Animal Kingdom. What is really unique is each park’s events all happen with 60 days of each other. For example, the Magic Kingdom Moonlight Magic events were on February 5th and 12th.
With the limited number of events, DVC members are only able to attend one of the events at each of the parks per year. No doubling dipping or flipping the chip!
Passholder Insights: Disney Vacation Club usually announces the next year’s dates in December of the preceding year.
Registering for the Event
Disney enjoys creating magical moments, and with the DVC Moonlight registration it’s no different. A day before registration opens you get an email inviting you to sign up for an upcoming Moonlight Magic offering. The email is triggered by a hotel reservation (booked on points) overlapping the event date. Guests staying on points have priority to the events over guests without a reservation. Guests not staying on points are able to register in the coming days.
Registration takes a matter of moments and all that you need to provide is your DVC membership number and total number of guests. Please note that the member registering for the event or someone with the same membership number must be attending the event.
Passholders Insights: For exact days and times for general DVC member registration check out the member benefits section of the website.
Now onto the fun stuff! Who doesn’t like anything free, especially at Walt Disney World? We have had an opportunity to attend two of the Moonlight Magic events over the years (Animal Kingdom and Magic Kingdom) and they’re amazing! Amazing may not do it justice, but it will have to do for today. Disney goes above and beyond at these events, they really treat the DVC members and guests well. We’ve always left feeling special!
If you’re able to attend an event our thoughts on strategy is easy, just have fun! There is tons to do and see, whether you’re looking to set a record for number of rides on Flight of Passage in one night, or posing for a picture with every character, there’s something for everyone. One general thought is to avoid the major attractions for each park when the event starts, for example, Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, etc. Save it for the end, as the line tends to still be long as others guests wrap up their day.
Overall, the Moonlight Magic events have been a great addition to the DVC perks. If you have an opportunity to attend an event, drop everything and go. Trust us, it’s worth the time. Even if you only go for the unlimited Mickey Premium bars