List of Early Theme Park Entry Eligible Hotels at Disney World

Walt Disney World has released more details about Early Theme Park Entry, which is the replacement for Morning Extra Magic Hours. In this post, we’ll share the official list of eligible hotels plus other minor clarifying info, and offer commentary about the hotels that are eligible–and those that are conspicuously omitted. (Updated July 17, 2021.)

Early Theme Park Entry will start on October 1, 2021 as part of the World’s Most Magical Celebration for Walt Disney World’s 50th Anniversary. This perk will allow on-site resort guests and those staying at select third party hotels (that are also all on-site) to enjoy 30-minute early entry to any Walt Disney World theme park, every day before normal operating hours begin.

Much like during Extra Magic Hours, only select attractions will be open in each park. A full ride roster has not yet been revealed, but our expectation is that it’ll be all of the headliners plus other popular attractions. Basically, everything but shows and lower profile attractions. (It’s also possible Magic Kingdom will only open Fantasyland and Tomorrowland.) To participate in Early Theme Park Entry, guests will need valid admission or Annual Pass, a theme park reservation for the same park on the same date, and Resort ID (MagicBand or room key).

Early Theme Park Entry is a benefit for registered guests staying at Walt Disney World Resort hotels and select other third party hotels, including the following:

Eligible Disney Owned Hotels (Spoiler: It’s All of Them)

  • Disney’s All-Star Movies Resort
  • Disney’s All-Star Music Resort
  • Disney’s All-Star Sports Resort
  • Disney’s Art of Animation Resort
  • Disney’s Pop Century Resort
  • Campsites at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort
  • Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort
  • Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort & Gran Destino Tower
  • Disney’s Port Orleans Resort – French Quarter
  • Disney’s Port Orleans Resort – Riverside
  • Cabins at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort
  • Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge
  • Disney’s Beach Club Resort
  • Disney’s BoardWalk Inn
  • Disney’s Contemporary Resort
  • Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa
  • Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort
  • Disney’s Wilderness Lodge
  • Disney’s Yacht Club Resort
  • Bay Lake Tower at Disney’s Contemporary Resort
  • Boulder Ridge Villas at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge
  • Copper Creek Villas & Cabins at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge
  • Disney’s Animal Kingdom Villas – Jambo House
  • Disney’s Animal Kingdom Villas – Kidani Village
  • Disney’s Beach Club Villas
  • Disney’s BoardWalk Villas
  • Disney’s Old Key West Resort
  • Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows
  • Disney’s Riviera Resort
  • Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa
  • Villas at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa

Eligible On-Site Third Party Hotels

  • Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek
  • Waldorf Astoria Orlando
  • B Resort & Spa Lake Buena Vista
  • DoubleTree Suites by Hilton Orlando
  • Hilton Orlando Buena Vista Palace
  • Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista
  • Holiday Inn Orlando
  • Wyndham Garden Lake Buena Vista
  • Wyndham Lake Buena Vista
  • Four Seasons Resort Orlando
  • Shades of Green
  • Walt Disney World Swan Hotel
  • Walt Disney World Dolphin Hotel
  • Walt Disney World Swan Reserve

July 17, 2021 Update: The Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin have issued a press release that their guests will be eligible for 30-minute early entry to any Walt Disney World theme park, every day beginning October 1, 2021. For early theme park entry, guests will need valid admission, a park reservation and Resort ID.

Additionally, guests of the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin can enjoy extended evening hours—experiencing select attractions, shops and dining after regular park hours—in select theme parks on select nights. Both benefits will be available to guests of the hotel’s newest addition, the Walt Disney World Swan Reserve, opening later this summer.

Similarly, Shades of Green has announced that it will be participating in the 30-minute morning early entry. No word yet on extended evening hours there.

The morning early entry news for all of these properties was expected. However, the extended evening hours eligibility is particularly noteworthy because Disney announced that only Deluxe Resorts and Deluxe Villas (DVC) would be eligible. While the Swan & Dolphin have a stronger relationship with Disney than most third party resorts, it’s possible other hotels that aren’t owned by Disney will participate in the extended evening hours.

With Swan & Dolphin and Shades of Green now added to the list of participating resorts, there aren’t nearly as many conspicuous omissions on this list. The biggest absence now is the JW Marriott Orlando Bonnet Creek, which is a brand new hotel and still might be working out the details with Disney.

Regardless, our expectation is that this list is incomplete, and more hotels will end up being eligible for early theme park entry once the dust settles. All of the Disney Springs Resort Area Hotels negotiate these deals collectively via their association–and these properties were the last added to the Extra Magic Hours lineup only a few years ago. The other hotels all negotiate their deals individually.

As with the Disney Dining Plan, these third parties and Disney have to agree on contract terms. Sometimes that takes longer with certain operators or management groups than others. We used to see the same thing every year with some restaurants (like Chefs de France) being ineligible for the Disney Dining Plan until the very last minute–or even a couple weeks into the new year.

It’s likely the same idea here–I have a tough time imagining that the Swan & Dolphin or Shades of Green are not going to offer early theme park entry to their guests. I’d be downright shocked if Shades of Green, in particular, is ineligible. Hopefully Walt Disney World is cognizant of the optics of excluding that particular hotel.

Ultimately, not much more in the way of commentary beyond that. It was pretty much a foregone conclusion based on Walt Disney World’s previous announcement that the same hotels eligible for Morning Extra Magic Hours would be participating in Early Theme Park Entry. The bigger surprise is actually the high profile properties that are not included, but we suspect that’ll be remedied in the coming weeks.

It’ll be interesting to see if any of these hotels manage to sneak onto the list of hotels for Extended Evening Hours. Those are officially only for guests of Deluxe Resorts, Deluxe Villas, and guests staying in Disney Vacation Club units (whether members or not). However, it wouldn’t be a huge shock to see the Four Seasons Orlando buy its way onto that list. As long-time partners with Disney, we might’ve predicted the same of the Swan & Dolphin, Swan Reserve, and Shades of Green up until seeing this list. Now, who knows?! 

Planning a Walt Disney World trip? Learn about hotels on our Walt Disney World Hotels Reviews page. For where to eat, read our Walt Disney World Restaurant Reviews. To save money on tickets or determine which type to buy, read our Tips for Saving Money on Walt Disney World Tickets post. Our What to Pack for Disney Trips post takes a unique look at clever items to take. For what to do and when to do it, our Walt Disney World Ride Guides will help. For comprehensive advice, the best place to start is our Walt Disney World Trip Planning Guide for everything you need to know!

Your Thoughts

What do you think about this list of hotels that are eligible for Early Theme Park Entry at Walt Disney World? Are you disappointed that so many third party hotels are included, or happy that it’ll give you cheaper on-site options for this perk? Do you agree or disagree with our commentary? Any questions we can help you answer? Hearing your feedback—even when you disagree with us—is both interesting to us and helpful to other readers, so please share your thoughts below in the comments!

47 Responses to “List of Early Theme Park Entry Eligible Hotels at Disney World”
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