We’ve been hanging out in the reopened Disney World resorts this week and there are a lot of updates!
One of the updates we’ve been really interested in learning more about is the new Virtual Chat feature for resort guests. This new option gives resort guests a whole new way to access Cast Members at the front desk while they’re staying at a Disney World resort. It’s SUPPOSED to be super quick and easy — but that’s not quite how things turned out.
What is the Virtual Chat feature?
You might recognize the Virtual Chat feature from the Disney World website. Typically, it can be used as an alternative to calling guest services when you need a quick answer. However, sometimes high-demand can hinder the system and make it so that wait times are super long to reach anyone via the chat.
The new Virtual Chat for resort guests actually uses the same “Chat with Us” feature that’s offered on the Disney site. This means that the system is already established but it ALSO means that resort guests are currently thrown into the same overwhelmed chat as everyone else during busy times.
The feature was supposed to launch with the reopening of the hotels on Monday, June 22nd. It seems, though, that it got off to a clunky start. We were unable to access Virtual Chat until June 24th! When we finally did try out the new service, things still didn’t run perfectly.
How does it work?
Here’s how our first-time use of the system worked! We tried to ask for some extra towels in our room today and ran into some long wait times. As a resort guest, you should see a new option pop up on the menu screen of your My Disney Experience app. Just click on the button that says “Chat with Us.”
From there, it will take you to a messaging window. This is where you can type your question or request. Right now, though, we were met with a few paragraphs about the overwhelming demand on the servers. That’s right — it turns out the chat actually redirects you to the same chat server that’s on the Disney website.
Of course, the Disney website chat is experiencing SUPER high volumes right now with all of the big questions people have. Unfortunately, this translates to a potentially lengthy wait in your resort chat — even just for towels.
When you do get a response, you’ll see a little red dot pup up on the “Chat with Us” button to tell you you have a new message.
When volumes aren’t overwhelming, the chat Cast Member will connect you to a Cast Member at your resort who can assist you. The system definitely still has its issues though.
Since the Virtual Chat function does not have a special channel for resort guests to directly contact THEIR front desk, it can take a looooong time to get your chat request resolved. For instance, it took us over 2 HOURS to see that little red dot appear the first time we reached out and almost 2 hours the second time we tried as well. You honestly might be better off just giving the front desk a call.
We can see the chat being SUPER useful when lines aren’t clogged, but anytime the chat gets busy, those wait times make it feel less like a perk and more like a bust. Still, if you can’t call down to the front desk for whatever reason, it’s nice to have this option.
We’ll be trying Virtual Chat for resort guests again when the chat lines die down a little bit. For all the latest updates on changes in a reopened Disney World, keep an eye on DFB!
Have you tried the new Virtual Chat feature? Tell us in the comments!