Port Orleans to test direct checkins, bypassing Front Desk

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The Sassagoula Sentinel
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Port Orleans to test direct checkins, bypassing Front Desk

Unread post by The Sassagoula Sentinel » June 5th, 2014, 1:19 pm

Port Orleans Riverside and Port Orleans French Quarter will both be taking part in a two-week trial of an innovative new time-saving checkin procedure for guests arriving between Monday 16 June and Saturday 28 June 2014.

To qualify, guests with arrival dates between 16 and 28 June will need to have first created a My Disney Experience account, and already received their Magic Bands at home (meaning that this test will only be available to domestic US residents). The guests will also need to have completed Online Checkin, and paid in full prior to arrival - including setting up a PIN number for their account. Basically, everything you would normally do while standing at the Front Desk needs to have been completed in advance.

Any guests who meet these requirements will automatically receive a notification email a few days prior to arrival to make them aware of the test, and then an hour or so before their stated arrival time they will get a further text message and/or email indicating their assigned room number. They are then free to proceed directly to their room without any need to first call at the Front Desk.

Anyone not wishing to take advantage of this test - or perhaps needing more information, or with questions or concerns about the location of their room - should simply show up at the Front Desk and check-in normally. There is no need to "opt out" if anyone does not wish to participate, this is purely an added convenience.

This is only an initial time-limited test at the moment, not a soft-launch, and it will not currently be extended beyond the trial period. The results will then be evaluated to decide whether this system could work for a more general roll-out at Walt Disney World at some point in the future.

The trial will not be advertised generally, nor promoted to guests who have not already met the above criteria, so if you'd like to participate just get yourself set up in My Disney Experience, do your Online Checkin, and wait for your email.


[Updates added on 6 June]

This trial system is not compulsory, I guess it's mainly for repeat guests who often ask about whether the Front Desk line will be shorter or longer if they do online checkin, or if they arrive at 10am or 11am, etc. Think of it as "FastPass to your Room" if you like, or "Checkin+". If you don't want to use it though, that's entirely up to you.

"Paid in full" happens automatically for packages at 45 days out (and I assume for room-only at 6 days?) so no need to do anything in those cases. If you want to check, or force a payment through so this system will definitely kick in, just call the Reservation Center in advance. The system will not apply to any bookings where an ID needs to be confirmed upon arrival (e.g. cast member bookings, etc).

Welcome Packs will not (for the trial at least) be sent to rooms in advance. If you need one - for example for a map, parking pass or other welcome collateral - you'll need to pop by the Front Desk at your convenience to pick one up.

MagicBands and all their paid features (park tickets, dining plan credits, etc) will go live once the reservation is centrally 'checked-in' on the system, which is also when your text will be sent advising you of your room number - so guests can go directly to a park upon arrival at WDW if they wish.

The room number will normally be confirmed and a text sent about one hour before your stated arrival time, but it could be as close as 15 minutes if a suitable room is not ready early enough. If a room is still not ready by then, a message will be sent advising of the delay but your band will still be activated for all the other features but obviously not for door-key access yet. A followup message will confirm the room number later, and you will be able to use the door-key feature after that.

There will be three other Walt Disney World resort hotels taking part in the trial at the same time.

Chuckinthechat
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Re: Port Orleans to test direct checkins, bypassing Front De

Unread post by Chuckinthechat » June 5th, 2014, 3:57 pm

I think that is actually a fantastic idea. But only for people that want it that have been there before.
But it will take out some of the magic that can happen at the desk by just being able to talk to the cast members

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Re: Port Orleans to test direct checkins, bypassing Front De

Unread post by Admin » June 6th, 2014, 3:24 am

Some update notes based on questions I've received:

This trial system is not compulsory, I guess it's mainly for repeat guests who often ask about whether the Front Desk line will be shorter or longer if they do online checkin, or if they arrive at 10am or 11am, etc. Think of it as "FastPass to your Room" if you like, or "Checkin+". If you don't want to use it though, that's entirely up to you.

"Paid in full" happens automatically for packages at 45 days out (and I assume for room-only at 6 days?) so no need to do anything in those cases. If you want to check, or force a payment through so this system will definitely kick in, just call the Reservation Center in advance. The system will not apply to any bookings where an ID needs to be confirmed upon arrival (e.g. cast member bookings, etc).

Welcome Packs will not (for the trial at least) be sent to rooms in advance. If you need one - for example for a map, parking pass or other welcome collateral - you'll need to pop by the Front Desk at your convenience to pick one up.

MagicBands and all their paid features (park tickets, dining plan credits, etc) will go live once the reservation is centrally 'checked-in' on the system, which is also when your text will be sent advising you of your room number - so guests can go directly to a park upon arrival at WDW if they wish.

The room number will normally be confirmed and a text sent about one hour before your stated arrival time, but it could be as close as 15 minutes if a suitable room is not ready early enough. If a room is still not ready by then, a message will be sent advising of the delay but your band will still be activated for all the other features but obviously not for door-key access yet. A followup message will confirm the room number later, and you will be able to use the door-key feature after that.

There will be three other Walt Disney World resort hotels taking part in the trial at the same time.

Andre
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- The Unofficial Visitor's Guide to the Port Orleans Resorts in Orlando, Florida -

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RiverRooster
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Re: Port Orleans to test direct checkins, bypassing Front De

Unread post by RiverRooster » June 6th, 2014, 5:33 am

As a frequent guest I have yet to have any multi-day, room only stays paid in full before arrival. This applies to stays booked well in advance as well as last minute trips. The norm has been to have a payment equivalent to 1 night's stay taken as a deposit at the time of reservation, with the balance due once I arrive. It will be interesting to see if payment options will be offered when booking in order to allow people to take advantage of this.

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Re: Port Orleans to test direct checkins, bypassing Front De

Unread post by Admin » June 6th, 2014, 4:36 pm

RiverRooster wrote:As a frequent guest I have yet to have any multi-day, room only stays paid in full before arrival. This applies to stays booked well in advance as well as last minute trips. The norm has been to have a payment equivalent to 1 night's stay taken as a deposit at the time of reservation, with the balance due once I arrive.
I have always found the same for room-only stays (the final balance is taken at checkin time) and I've already asked the question of how this will work during the test.

Andre
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- The Unofficial Visitor's Guide to the Port Orleans Resorts in Orlando, Florida -

Thorpy
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Re: Port Orleans to test direct checkins, bypassing Front De

Unread post by Thorpy » June 19th, 2014, 5:38 pm

I think one of the ways they will get some payback from the whole nextgen magic band thing has just been identified....I Imagine once the populace get used to this system that the front desk will be much cheaper to run....across 20 odd hotels. significant saving.

gtaro
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Re: Port Orleans to test direct checkins, bypassing Front De

Unread post by gtaro » August 4th, 2014, 10:37 am

Andre-
Any indication of how this test went?

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Re: Port Orleans to test direct checkins, bypassing Front De

Unread post by Admin » August 4th, 2014, 5:42 pm

It went OK I think, but it seems like some other resorts are trying an alternative option at the moment, so perhaps a different trial?

Andre
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- The Unofficial Visitor's Guide to the Port Orleans Resorts in Orlando, Florida -

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