Amongst the decorations, the refurbishments, the new parade and the Characters’ Express, it’s easy to overlook one addition for the 15th Anniversary which has changed a visit to Disneyland Park just as much — Extra Magic Hours, the extra time allowed in the park primarily for Disney Hotel guests since 1st April 2007.

First Extra Magic Hours guide

The 2006 trials saw generous extra hours to enjoy the park under darkness after regular opening hours, whilst the first months of the 2007 season gave guests a scattering of evening dates almost equal to the number of morning dates giving two additional hours before park opening.

However, as noted by many fans in recent months, whilst the overall number of Extra Magic Hours has been increasing, the number of evening Extra Magic Hours has been steadily declining. Now, Disneyland Resort Paris has updated the texts on its website and in brochures to state not that the offer gives simply “two extra hours” but “two hours before regular park opening”. Evening Extra Magic Hours are officially no more!

Excerpt from new Winter/Summer 2007/08 brochure

Getting out of bed two hours earlier doesn’t quite have the same magic as enjoying two extra hours in the park at night, so why the change? From the operational side of things, there’s quite simply not a single argument in favour of the evening hours.

Whilst morning hours require only a few additional cast members to check Dream passports and hotel EasyPass cards, evening hours required the coordination of a huge guest flow operation to hand out coloured wristbands each afternoon. Cleaning and maintenance crews had to extend their day and put off their work by two hours. Guests not staying at a Disney Hotel could easily stay in the park longer than allowed, whilst — although this probably wasn’t a factor — with morning hours they’d be forced to stand in line and watch as those paying extra for the hotels breezed straight into the park.

In short, it just makes much more sense to open the park earlier rather keep it open later, and the amount of Extra Magic Hours has benefited as a result — the latest dates for January, February, March and April 2008 now see Extra Magic Hours on almost every single day of the month.

— Check the latest Extra Magic Hours on the new DLRP Magic! Calendar >>

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