Beginning on February 27th, 2019, the Walt Disney World Resort hotels will implement a new payment card policy for guests who wish to put a payment card on file at check in. This new policy “better aligns with hotel industry practices.” Under the new policy, Disney Resort hotels will place incremental authorization holds on the payment card for estimated incidental expenses, in addition to any balance due on the reservation.
Under the new policy, on the day of arrival, Resort hotels will place an authorization hold on the card for any balance due plus $100 to cover estimated incidental expenses. If guest spending exceeds the original $100 hold, additional incremental holds will be obtained automatically. The holds placed on the card will never exceed the current balance due plus $100.
This is standard hotel industry practice, but until now Disney has only obtained a signature at check in as a guest’s promise to pay, and did not actually charge the card until checkout (as long as the balance due remained less than the cutoff amount, which ranged from $500-$1500 depending on resort). This new policy is designed to ensure that the often-significant charge at check-out is not rejected by the card issuer as a potential fraudulent charge or for being over the cardholder’s credit limit.
Guests have the option of not putting a credit card on file, but they will be unable to use their Magic Band for charging at the resort or in the parks. As is current practice, guests will be able to visit the front desk to apply cash or gift card payments against their balance due to avoid actual charges being placed on their credit card.
Guests will be advised of the payment card policy during online check-in through their My Disney Experience account or at the front desk. Guests who have already completed online check-in for stays beginning Feb. 27 or later will be notified later this month about the new policy.