Disney’s fantastic system that encourages you to get out of long lines and spend money in their stores relax while waiting is called FASTPASS. A surprising number of visitors don’t even use it and yet it’s free and makes touring more enjoyable because you get to skip lines (which might prompt line waiters to say “hey, that’s not fair!” but you can just ignore them, knowing how clever you are).
Here’s how it works:
Read my thoughts on the new FastPass+ system which is rumored to roll out at the end of 2013 or early 2014.
- The most popular rides (see list below) have FASTPASS machines which look kind of like pared-down ATMs. You put your park ticket in and it spits out a FASTPASS letting you know when to come back to ride. You do this for each member of your party that wants to ride.
- Each FASTPASS will also indicate when you can get another FASTPASS.
- You will be given a window to come back to use your FASTPASS and Disney employees cast members will enforce that return time.
- When you return, you will go to the special FASTPASS entrance. This allows you to jump ahead in the line. For some rides, you go right to the front and ride quickly; for other rides, you’ll just skip ahead but still have a little bit of a wait.
Let’s break down the process in more detail:
- Go to one of these rides to get a FASTPASS.
Magic Kingdom EPCOT Hollywood Studios Animal Kingdom Big Thunder Mountain Railroad Soarin' Toy Story Midway Mania Expedition Everest Splash Mountain Test Track Tower of Terror Kilimanjaro Safari Space Mountain Living with the Land Rock N Roller Coaster Kali River Rapids Buzz Lightyear's Space Ranger Spin Maelstrom Star Tours It's Tough to Be a Bug Jungle Cruise Mission: SPACE Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular Primeval Whirl Mickey's PhilharMagic Voyage of the Little Mermaid Dinosaur Peter Pan's Flight Winnie the Pooh Dumbo Barnstormer Journey of the Little Mermaid
- Insert park tickets to have a FASTPASS distributed. Th FastPass machines are usually located right next to the rides, with some exceptions in the New Fantasyland section of Magic Kingdom.
- Look at your FASTPASS and return to the FASTPASS return line at that ride during the time specified on your pass. This line is clearly marked like this one:
- You can get another set of FASTPASSes when the FASTPASS says you can.
Examples of FASTPASS machines:
Go through the list of rides on your touring plan and mark which ones you’ll want to use FASTPASSes to ride. You should be sure to take advantage of these FASTPASS opportunities in particular:
- Magic Kingdom – all of the rides
- EPCOT – Soarin’
- Hollywood Studios – Toy Story Mania (the most popular ride in all of Disney World right now), Rock N Roller Coaster and Tower of Terror
- Animal Kingdom – Kilimanjaro Safari, Expedition Everest and Kali River Rapids
Questions or comments on FASTPASSes? Talk about it in the comments.
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