I checked into Saratoga Springs around 10:30am, receive my dull grey Magicband and the older woman at “Concierge” tells me if buy a new band “it MUST be activated at either Guest Services or here at the Concierge desk.” I rode the golf cart to the far side of the resort, drop my bags inside the rom, and take a bus over to Animal Kingdom where I arrive at DAK just in time for it to start pouring rain.
The restaurant I wanted to eat at was “Closed for refurbishment” so I ducked into a store and looked at all the colorful Magicbands but couldn’t decide which one to get – so I got both. I tried checking out, but before I could finish my first word the young Asian woman at the register looked at me confusedly and instantly vanished to fetch an older white woman to check me out. This new cashier shuffled me to a register at the other end of the store and then proceeds to explain that I need to activate the bands IN STORE in order for them to work.
I told her what the woman from this morning told me and the she looked at me like I’d just said the dumbest thing in the entire World and then repeated I must have them activated there. I replied that could only activate ONE of them so I’d take them back to Guest Services when I made up my mind which one I wanted to wear for the week.
The reason I came to DAK (other than lunch) was to see an overrated movie turned into a mediocre theme park musical. I wish I could say better things about it, but I can’t. Oh yes I can, the theater was dry save for a few bubbles. This of course meant no-one wanted to leave the theatre meaning it took forever to get out of the building because guests just stopped in the middle of the walkway blocking the exit so they wouldn’t get wet.
Well anyway, mission accomplished, so I go back and pass the main gate just in time for the sun to come out. It never fails, but I still went back to the hotel and decided to activate the blue “Sorcerer Mickey” band. I went up to the desk, and the disaffected young woman at the concierge desk had me take the band out of the packaging and then reluctantly scanned it into her system a couple times while typing intently on her keypad before handing it back to me and asking for my credit card and the security code in order to “activate” it.
I go back up to my room and try my new band. It doesn’t work. I try again, and it didn’t work (again). I try twisting my hand the other way and nothing happened. I try a fourth time, and then made the trek all the way back to the same disaffected lady at the Carriage House.
“Grr,” she muttered taking my band back. “I wouldn’t have to do this crap if you had just did it at the store like you were SUPPOSED to do.”
She scans the band again and does some more typing and hands it back to me as another guest comes up to the agent next to us and says “I tried this Magicband four times, but I still can’t get into my room…”
Update (Aug 25): The band did unlock the room…on the third try (ditto when I tested it before leaving for the parks this morning) yet despite my ParkHopper supposedly being on the band, I was still declined entry into DHS. Interestingly enough, I had no issue getting into the Magic Kingdom earlier this afternoon – maybe that’s why it’s called the MAGIC Kingdom.