Guide to the Disneyland App: Everything You Need to Know

Our Disneyland app guide is here to help you navigate one of the most free and useful tools Disneyland offers! The official Disneyland app is by far the best tool to utilize before, during, and after your trip to Disneyland! The convenience of this app allows you to view Park hours, buy your Park tickets, view your Park tickets, view wait times, browse maps, locate Disney characters, reserve dining, and much more!

The following Disneyland app guide is everything you need to know to familiarize yourself with the official Disneyland app.

Disneyland just shared updates two exciting new features that are debuting on the Disneyland app. Scroll down for more.

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Disneyland App Guide: Download the Official Disneyland App Before Your Disney VacationUp close shot of an iPhone with the Disney map open

Before you arrive to Disneyland, you should download the official app. The app is very helpful even during your planning process. Download the app from the App Store or get it on Google play.

The app is available for iPhones and smartphones for Androids. Once downloaded, create an account so you are able to link your tickets and credit card! You are not required to link a credit card, but if you plan on reserving dining or mobile order dining, you do need a credit card on file.

Disneyland App Guide: Disneyland App Features

disneyland app new photo features

  • Check Wait Times – The best feature of this app is the ability to check attraction wait times! Simply launch the app, tap the map, and scan wait times for both Disneyland and Disney California Adventure Park! Wait times may be off by a couple of minutes or so, but from my personal experience, these wait times are close to accurate!
  • Skip the Ticket Lines – The Disneyland app allows you to bypass ticket booth lines by purchasing tickets right from your app! Once tickets are purchased through the app, all you have to do is take your mobile phone up to the admission booth and have them scan the bar code directly from your phone! It’s that easy! Annual passholders can also use this feature to renew their annual passes, check blackout dates, and enter the Parks. However, annual passholders must still bring in Close up of map showing estimated wait timestheir annual passes to access Fastpasses and receive discounts at participating stores and restaurants. Although you will save much more money by buying your tickets through our travel partner!
  • Check Disney Lightning Lane Return Times – A great feature of this app is the convenience to check Genie+ distributing return times. Just click into the app, tap the map, and click into the specific attraction to see Lightning Lane times. If you already have a Lightning Lane return time, access that information from your app! It is a great reminder to help you plan your day around your return times!
  • Make Dining Reservations – Have easy access to dining reservations! This feature is great as your plan your Disney vacation (remember, you can reserve a seat at your favorite restaurants 60 days in advance!). This feature is also great when you are in the Park and are looking for someplace to eat! All of your reservations can be viewed from your app to help you keep track of upcoming Disney plans!
  • Mobile Food Ordering – A handful of restaurants offer mobile ordering which is a fast and easier option when looking for dining at both Parks! On the Home screen, under My Plans, click on Order Food. Restaurants offering this unique experience will appear and you have the option to customize your order right from the app! Choose your pickup time. Once you arrive at the restaurant, update your status on the app so the restaurant can prepare your order. One thing to note here is that you have to prepay for your order. But when the Park is super crowded, you don’t have reservations, and your entire family is starving, this option is super convenient! And did I mention that there is practically no line to wait in when using this feature? Check out our guide HERE to mobile ordering at Disneyland.
  • View Disney PhotoPass Photos – Another great feature, found on the Home Screen, is your PhotoPass photos! You have theability to link all your attraction photos and have them sent right to your app! All you have to do is click into the app, locate the My Photos option and click on Link Photos. After having the most amazing experience on, say, the Incredicoaster, grab the code at the exit and link it to your app! It’s that simple. On busier days it may take awhile to get your photos. This feature is also great to pass along to the Cast Members at character meet and greets so you don’t have to carry around tons of those photo cards! Just click on the Show PhotoPass Code and show it to the Cast Member photographer to link the photos to the app.  All photos will appear when you click See All Photos. What I love about this feature is that Disney puts customized frames around your photos specific to each attraction. You are able to Edit, Save, and Share these photos, too! Photos stay on your app for one year so you can play with this feature after your trip as well as during your trip!
  • Car Locator – Coming later in October, Disney is launching a tool in the app that will save your parking information when you park at the Mickey & Friends parking structure, Pixar Pals parking structure, Toy Story parking area and Simba parking lot. The app will either immediately lock in on your parking location if you have location services on or you can manually enter your parking details in the app. This will be a helpful reminder at the end of the day! It goes one step further than the Apple car feature which doesn’t really help in the massive Disneyland parking structures.
  • Augmented Reality PhotoPass Lenses – Starting today (October 4), the purchase of Disneyland Genie Plus also includes access to Disney PhotoPass Lenses. This was initially launched back at Walt Disney World and some of those lenses will come to Disneyland, but there will also be new unique lenses. Pose with Grogu, chow down on a Mickey Pretzel, show off your Disney balloons (seen above) and more.
  • Mobile Checkout – To skip the line at some of the most popular Disneyland merchandise locations, you can scan and pay for your items using your Disneyland app. When you’re done shopping at locations including World of Disney in Downtown Disney District, Emporium at Disneyland park and Elias & Co. at Disney California Adventure park all you do is scan your items, pay in the app, and then show the confirmation to the Cast Member at the designated exit.
  • Mobile Cast Compliments – I have always been a huge proponent of giving Disneyland Cast Members compliments when they go above and beyond in delivering magic for guests. The traditional process requires that you note down the Cast Members name, where you saw them, and the details and then take that to Guest Relations. Now, there is an option to give compliments directly in the Disneyland app. Since the feature launched in August, thousands of compliments have been given. To give a compliment, search “Cast Compliment” in the Disneyland app and follow the prompts. Be sure to note the Cast Member’s name and hometown so it gets to them.
  • Ask a Question in the App – The Chat with Us option in the main menu of the Disneyland app connects you to a Cast Member via in-app messaging. You can ask about general theme park information, tickets and ticket linking, account troubleshooting, and more. I have found that this feature is best used when you are not yet at Disneyland and need a ticketing question answered. For questions when I am in person at Disneyland I prefer to go to Guest Relations. While you can send messages in the feature 24 hours a day, a Cast Member will respond between 7:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m. PT.
  • Virtual Queues – You’ll also use the app for accessing the World of Color virtual queue to secure a reserved viewing section and to join the Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway virtual queue.

Disneyland App Guide: Other Important Disneyland App Features

Find other need-to-know information such as:
  • Attractions – Not only is this where you will find all-important wait times, but you can find ride details, height requirements, thrill types, age recommendations, and operating hours.
  • Event Activities – Locate activities happening all over the Park, including activity details, times, and other important information.
  • Characters – Find location and times for your favorite Disney characters!
  • Dining – Locate all dining experiences and see what each has to offer! View dining details, cuisine types, hours, and locations. What’s even better, you have the opportunity to view menus! You can also reserve dining or mobile order from here!
  • Entertainment – Don’t miss a single show or live entertainment happening around the Park! Times and locations are listed for all indoor and outdoor shows, parades, wandering street musicians, and ceremonies (flag retreat).
  • Restrooms – Although I know where every bathroom at the Disneyland Resort is located, I find this bathroom locator feature excellent in time of need for those that need to know when they have to go. Now… if only Disneyland could make a Fastpass for the bathrooms!
  • Events and Tours – Check out what tour is being offered when you click into this feature. You can also see what private events are upcoming and purchase tickets for these special celebrations!
  • PhotoPass – Locate where all the PhotoPass Cast Member photographers are so you can have them take your photo so your entire family can be included in your photos! You can now also use Disneyland MagicBand+ to link photos.
  • Guest Services – The following services are located with a click of this feature:
    • Guest services
    • Drinking fountains
    • Picture spots
    • ATMs
    • Restrooms with AED
    • FastPass locations
    • Single rider lines
    • Rider Switch lines
    • Wireless internet access areas
    • Picture spots
    • Services for guests with disabilities
    • Mobile food ordering locations
    • Service animal break areas
    • Locker rentals
    • Lost and found
    • Smoking areas
  • Shops – Who doesn’t love to shop at Disneyland? Locate all the stores, listed with hours of operations. This feature also lists where the pressed coin machines are!
  • Hotels – Locate all the hotels of the Disneyland Resort and also the Good Neighbor Hotels. In this feature, you can see hotel locations in proximity to Disneyland and also book through this feature!
  • Spa and Recreation – This feature lists the details and locations of the spas, swimming pools, and fitness centers throughout the Resort.

Is the Official Disneyland App Necessary?

Of course you do not need this app to enjoy yourself at the Disneyland Resort. However, I highly recommend it! This app was created to make your time at the Resort less stressful! And this app has done its job for my family!
Not tech savvy? No worries! This app is user friendly! The features are self explanatory. And we hope our Disneyland app guide has helped you find your way!
Don’t forget to download the Play Disney Parks app, as well. This interactive app takes the boring out of long line waiting! Play games with the family or answer fun trivia questions about everything Disney as you wait!

Feeling like an Expert after Reading Our Disneyland App Guide? Put Your Official Disneyland App to Use

Already downloaded the official Disneyland app, read our Disneyland app guide, and ready to book your vacation? Let us help you! Subscribe to our free newsletter full of helpful planning information, exclusive Disney deals, and access to the lowest priced Disney tickets anywhere. You can find more information on planning your vacation here:

Disclosure: We have used all the products recommended on Mickey Visit. We may receive compensation when you click on links to some products featured.

About Kim Schultz

Kim has her Bachelor's Degree in English Literature with a minor in Technical and Professional Writing from San Francisco State University. She received her editing certificate from University of Berkeley Extension and won numerous awards for fiction writing from the San Mateo County Fair Literary Stage.

One thing she loves most in life besides family and writing is Disneyland! Kim and her family are season pass holders and travel to Disneyland numerous times a year (between 10-15 times to be exact!).

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4 comments add your comment

  1. I want to thank you for all of your tips and information. Thank you for taking time and providing clear instructions on how apps work and tips and to continuously update. I’m from the older generation and my husband and I are not tech savvy. I’ve been seriously nervous and concerned as we bought the Genie+ as well and I’m afraid I won’t figure out how to use it. We go at the end of November and since we are attending 4 days we are not purchasing the hopper option. A few Questions, I think there is a special World of Colour Christmas, but I’m unsure how to purchase that. Will it be available to purchase on the app? Can I purchase the day of or can I purchase now for November 25-28 when we go? Also how do I purchase the Sip n Savour passes? Do I purchase on the app, or the day of or can I purchase now. Thank you

    • Hi Darlene,

      You will do great using the app! Just beginning practicing with it now before you go so you’re familiar with it. Our guide on World of Color explains how you can grab a Genie+ reservation using the app which is no additional cost.

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