Ah, the line-ups. One of the few cons of Walt Disney World. We all know its going to be busy, but once you start waiting in a line-up, you are just so anxious to enjoy the ride and be off to your next magical adventure.
Luckily, Walt Disney World has the “Fast Pass” system, to help your ride experiences be even more convenient, and take up less of your valuable travel time. Guests staying on Walt Disney World property have the luxury of booking their Fast Passes 60 days in advance, (and recently added some of Disney’s good neighbor hotels) and Disney Resort guests will have all of their Fast Passes loaded on their Magic Bands. If you are staying off-site you can book your Fast Pass selections within 30 days of your trip. You get three Fast Passes per day to book in advance, and then a fourth that you can book after you use your first three.
If you have ever booked Fast Passes before through the Disney website, you’ll know that there are some “Tier Systems” in other parks, such as Epcot. This means that you can only book one Fast Pass for the bigger name rides (for Epcot would be “Soarin'”, “Test Track” and “Frozen: Ever After”), but lucky for you Magic Kingdom doesn’t have that restriction. You can book any rides you want for a Fast Pass as long as there are still Fast Passes available for that attraction at the time you are looking for.
Now, you might be quick to jump into your Fast Pass bookings but there is some hints and tricks to this. Some rides you may want a Fast Pass for, and some you can probably be just fine without one.
The top rides that you should definitely get a Fast Pass for:
1. Seven Dwarfs Mine Train – If you plan on choosing any ride for a Fast Pass this should be your first selection. This ride debuted in 2012 in the opening of New Fantasyland, and the wait times have not declined much since then. They are usually upwards of 100 minutes every day, so this one is definitely worth a Fast Pass. It’s a roller coaster that’s great for most ages (38 inches and up!), its just a really quick one. I felt like this ride is over before you know it, so if I were to wait over 100 minutes for this, it would be a bit disappointing as it’s over fast.
2. Peter Pan’s Flight – This ride has always been unbelievably popular in the Magic Kingdom. This one tends to be a family favorite and is always going to have a long line up. If your family wants to ride on Peter Pan’s flight, a Fast Pass is definitely recommended, or visiting it when the park opens. However, this ride does have a brand new line queue though that makes the wait a bit more enjoyable!
3. Space Mountain – Who doesn’t want to be flung around in outer space on a roller coaster where you can’t see where you’re going? I know I sure want to! And so do a lot of other people, which make Space Mountain a very worthy candidate for a Fast Pass. This queue at least is a nice air conditioned one if you want to wait, but definitely will have a long line by the time morning is over.
4. Big Thunder Mountain Railroad – The “wildest ride in the wilderness” may be a super fun ride, but a not-so-fun line queue. This is a more popular Disney ride in Magic Kingdom, however without a Fast Pass this line can be hot (most of the line-up is not air conditioned) and long, as there’s not much to look at while you wait. This one is definitely Fast Pass worthy, or at least early morning worthy as the line up is really hot in the afternoon.
5. Splash Mountain – My personal favorite ride in the Magic Kingdom, “everything is satisfactual!” This ride can have a crazy high wait time in the hotter months, and as low as a 5 minute wait time if you go in January. So for this one it really depends on the time of year that you go to Walt Disney World. Obviously when its hotter outside, everyone wants a chance to get on Splash Mountain to cool off. In January when its cooler, not a lot of people want to get water on them as it takes longer to cool off. So if you know the weather is going to be warmer, you might want to arrange a Fast Pass for this one. That 50 foot plunge sure does feel good on a hot day!
So we’ve discussed some of the more popular options for Fast Passes, but maybe this pace of ride isn’t quite your style. The below options are still definitely Fast Pass worthy, and still can have long wait times (and if you are lucky they might not as well, so don’t be discouraged!) so make sure to check these ones out as well:
6. The Haunted Mansion – this one is definitely a cult favorite but a must-do as well. The Haunted Mansion is one of the Walt Disney World originals rides from opening day in 1971, and part of the true Disney experience. Don’t worry, its not like a haunted house that you will be terrified in, in takes you through a slow moving ride on “doom buggies” to take a look at some “happy haunts”! This ride can increase in volume as the day goes on since it is such a favorite.
7. Pirates of the Caribbean – We’ve all seen and loved the movies, so we all love to see the ride! Another Walt Disney World must-do attraction, this ride is extremely popular as due to it being a Walt Disney World classic, and also because Johnny Depp helped make it even more famous with all of his drunken adventures in the Pirates movies. It’s a pirates life for everyone on this slow moving boat ride, that takes you through an adventure of familiar scenes from the movies.
8. Jungle Cruise – Another opening day attraction from 1971 and definitely, yet again, another must-do in order to have the full Disney World experience. This is a comedic tour through the “jungle”, and unlike the Kilamanjaro Safaris in Animal Kingdom, none of these animals are real! What is the draw to this ride then? The draw is the comedy of your Tour Guide, who is full of cringe worthy, (but hilarious) “dad jokes” for everything you see on your cruise. This is Fast Pass worthy because the line-up can get hot while you wait as its an outdoor line up (although shaded at times). After you are done your cruise, don’t forget to check out the new “Jungle Navigation Co. Ltd. Skipper Canteen” restaurant in Adventureland, which is absolutely delicious and based on this attraction. Check out my blog post on this restaurant as well by reading: Jungle Navigation Co. Ltd. Skipper Canteen
9. It’s a Small World – You’ll either love me or hate me for adding this one. Going on this ride means you will have the song stuck in your head for the rest of the trip. However, the ride can either have a lengthy wait, or a low wait. If it has a lengthy wait time, a Fast Pass can be a good option because not everyone wants to wait too long to get this song stuck in their head all day. But, again I have to say, it’s a Walt Disney World classic.
10. Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin – Another one of my favorites, this is a fast moving line up, but a very popular ride for your family to enjoy. This one is all about using your little laser gun to shoot targets and defeat Zurg. This one can definitely get competitive with your traveling party as everyone wants the highest score. If you can get a score of “999,999” you get the title of “Galactic Hero” and if you take a picture of this achievement, a Cast Member will give you a button! No matter how hard I try, I haven’t made it there yet.
There is no shortage of rides in the Magic Kingdom! You really can’t go wrong with any of the above selections. Other honorable mentions for Fast Passes are “Enchanted Tales with Belle”, “Meeting Mickey at Town Square”, “Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh” and meeting the Princesses.
It’s the Magic Kingdom, run around, have fun and enjoy every second! I will do a post another time on fun things to do in the Magic Kingdom with little to no wait times.
Have a magical time, adventurers!
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