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Animal Kingdom FastPass+ Advice (tips, tricks, and strategies)

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Animal Kingdom FastPass+ Advice (tips, tricks, and strategies)

Animal Kingdom is home to one of the most popular rides in the entire Walt Disney World Resort – Avatar Flight of Passage. But, if you want to ride it without a 2 hour wait you’ll have to do some advanced planning before you get to the park.

That’s where FastPasses can help. Every guest that visits Disney World will start off with the ability to make 3 advanced FastPass+ reservations per day and which ones you select can make a huge difference on how smoothly your day goes.

Ready to learn more? Here’s our best advice for maximizing your Animal Kingdom FastPass plans.

Important Update:
Disney Genie has replaced FastPass+

FastPass+ (at Walt Disney World) and FastPass (at Disneyland) have been discontinued. A new system, called Disney Genie (free) and Disney Genie+ (pay-to-use) are now available at all 4 parks.

  • Disney Genie –> Complimentary in-app service that helps you plan your day.
  • Disney Genie+ –> Basically, it is a paid FastPass that costs $15 per ticket, per day (Walt Disney World) & $20 per ticket, per day (Disneyland). This service replaces the old FastPass service and allows you to choose the next available time to arrive at a variety of attractions. It works very similar to MaxPass at Disneyland.
  • Lightning Lane –> New name for FastPass line. You use this with Genie+.
  • Lightning Lane Select Experiences –> The most high-demand attractions are not available in Genie+; however, you can select up to 2 of these high-demand attractions per day to ride via an individual Lightning Lane selection. These selections will cost you extra (they aren’t included with the price of Genie+), and the prices are dynamic, meaning they will vary based upon the time of the year and attraction.

FastPass+ basics for Animal Kingdom

The Disney FastPass+ service is kind of like an advanced reservation system for attractions. My Disney Experience (either the app or online) allows you to pre-select 3 attractions that are a priority for you to see and experience.

Each selection – which is called a FastPass – will provide you with a 1-hour return window to ride via the FastPass+ line instead of standing in the typically way longer Standby line.

My Disney Experience get fastpass+

So, while you don’t really skip the entire line, your waits using FastPass are greatly reduced – which is especially important for popular attractions.

You receive 3 free FastPasses for each day of your ticket, however, how far in advance you can select your attractions differs.

Guests staying onsite at a Walt Disney World resort (and some select offsite locations) can make their selections 60 days in advance while those staying offsite can make theirs 30 days in advance.

The number of available FastPasses for each attraction is limited, which means the earlier you book yours the better your chances will be in securing what you want.

If all this stuff is brand new to you, we highly recommend you check out how to use FastPass+ at Disney World to learn more.

Animal Kingdom FastPass+ options and priorities

You can make 1-3 FastPass+ reservations ahead of time.

Here are your FastPass+ options at Animal Kingdom.

Top priority (visit early in the day or with a FP+) Second priority (great bonus FP+ options) Low priority (using FP+ not recommended)
Expedition Everest (44″ ht. req.)
Kilimanjaro Safaris
Rivers of Light
Na’vi River Journey OR Avatar Flight of Passage (44″ ht. req.) (can only have 1 of these at a time)
Festival of the Lion King
Kali River Rapids (38″ ht. req.)
DINOSAUR (40″ ht. req.)
Primeval Whirl (48″ ht. req.)
It’s Tough to Be a Bug
Meet Favorite Disney Pals at Adventurers Outpost
UP! A Great Bird Adventure
Finding Nemo – The Musical
Animation Experience

Animal Kingdom has tiers…kind of

While not full-fledged tiers like you see at Hollywood Studios and Epcot, Animal Kingdom does have some FastPass restrictions.

At Animal Kingdom, guests are only allowed to hold 1 FastPass from Pandora at a time (either Na’vi River Journey OR Avatar Flight of Passage). You can’t choose both.

Because of this restriction, if you do want to ride both with the shortest waits possible, you’ll definitely want to make sure you arrive to the park gates early (no later than 75 minutes before the park opens) and be prepared to ride whichever one you don’t have a FastPass for right at park opening. 

You can find more detailed info in our Animal Kingdom touring plans.

Best FastPass+ options for Animal Kingdom

Avatar Flight of Passage 

Best choice of the Pandora attractions if height requirements are not a factor

Avatar Flight of Passage queue

Location: Pandora
Height Requirement: 44″

This is one of the most popular rides in all of Walt Disney World and lines here can often reach 2 plus hours shortly after park opening. The best way to avoid those lines will be with a FastPass+.

If you are unable to get a FastPass+ your next best bet to ride with the shortest waits will be to arrive at least 75 minutes before park opening and then head directly to the attraction when the park officially opens. 

During busy times of the year it isn’t unusual for this attraction to open a bit earlier than the rest of the park, so we recommend you keep an eye out on wait times (you can check from home on the My Disney Experience app) to see when they start showing up on the app. If you see wait times BEFORE the official park opening time on the days leading up to your trip, you’ll know it is important to get to the park extra-early.

One final note: 

This attraction is known to cause motion sickness, so be aware if that is something that tends to bother you.

Na’vi River Journey

Best choice of the Pandora attractions if height requirements are a factor

NaVi River Journey

Location: Pandora
Height Requirement: none

Your other option for a FastPass in Pandora is Na’vi River Journey.

This attraction is family-friendly, and while the lines here don’t typically reach the same levels as what we see over at Flight of Passage, if you don’t have a FastPass for this ride it is still a good idea to try to ride it as close to park opening as you can.

Expedition Everest

Best choice of the general Animal Kingdom attractions if height requirements are not a factor

Expedition Everest

Location: Asia
Height Requirement: 44″

One of our favorites, Expedition Everest is a thrilling roller coaster that involves periods of near-total darkness as well as sections where your travel backwards at high-speed.

There’s no giant drops, but it is still intense and may not be suitable for all riders.

If you love it, though, there is a Single Rider line option which can make it easy for guests willing to split up from their party to ride multiple times.

Rivers of Light

Best choice of the general Animal Kingdom attractions if height requirements are a factor

Rivers of Light

Location: Asia
Height Requirement: none

This may seem like a surprising option, but Animal Kingdom does not have that many attractions without height requirements that necessitate a FastPass+ so using one here is a good option for many travelers with little ones.

And, while this isn’t the best nighttime show at Walt Disney World, if you would like to see it without wasting precious park-touring time to stand in line, a FastPass here makes sense.

If your kiddos are a bit older and like live shows, Festival of the Lion King would be another good option of a FastPass+.

What about the other parks?

Looking for FastPass strategies for the other parks?

Check out the posts below:

Magic Kingdom FastPass Advice
Epcot FastPass Advice
Hollywood Studios FastPass Advice

And don’t forget touring plans:

Magic Kingdom touring plans
Epcot touring plans
Hollywood Studios touring plans
Animal Kingdom touring plans

FastPass+ Tips & Tricks

You start with 3, but you can get more

Everybody starts with 3 FastPasses, but you can get additional FastPasses (one-at-a-time)  as soon as you use your 3rd FastPass.

Here’s how that works:

  • As soon as you tap your MagicBand or ticket for your 3rd FastPass, head over to the My Disney Experience app to see what is there. Attraction availability will depend on what time of day your 3rd FastPass is scheduled – the later in the day, the fewer options there will likely be. When you find something you want to ride, snag it.
  • Then, as soon as you tap your MagicBand for FastPass #4 you can do it all again: hop into the app, search for available attractions, and snag something else.
  • Keep repeating the process until you’re out of options OR you’re done for the day.

Characters might make sense

Some characters are just so popular that if you really want to meet them without a long line you’ll need to either plan to use a FastPass+ for them OR opt to visit at Rope Drop

So, if you are traveling with somebody that has a character they really want to meet AND that character offers FastPass+, using it as an option makes sense.

Pair FastPass with Rope Drop (and good touring plans)

If you really want to see and do all of the best-of-the-best attractions, you’ll have to pair Rope Drop with solid FastPass+ planning.

That means you’ll need to arrive to the front of the park no later than 75 minutes before opening (and we recommend even earlier during busy times of the year like the holidays).

To get the maximum amount of stuff done, pair early arrival with our Animal Kingdom touring plans.

When hours are extended, more FastPasses typically open up

Disney publishes their park hours about 180 days out, but the closer you get to your travel dates the higher the likelihood they’ll tweak those hours by opening earlier or staying open later (or sometimes both!).

When that happens, additional FastPasses open up for those new hours, which means if you missed out on something you really wanted before you may be able to snag it then.

If you don’t get what you want, keep trying

Some FastPasses are just hard-to-get (like with Flight of Passage), so you may not be able to get exactly what you want (at the time you want).

If that sounds like your situation make sure you check out our tips for how to get difficult FastPass+ reservations.

Height requirements

When picking your FastPasses, if you have little ones make sure you keep an eye out for height requirements and read up on how Rider Switch works at Animal Kingdom.


Have Animal Kingdom FastPass+ questions? We’ve got answers! Here’s some of the most common questions we hear:

What times should you make reservations?

After the park opens, plan to ride several things in the first couple of hours without FastPass+, make use of FastPass+ for late morning/early afternoon, and then get additional FastPass+ reservations for later in the day, if needed.

We’ve included suggested times for FP+ reservations in the Animal Kingdom touring plans.

Does Animal Kingdom have FastPass tiers?

Sort of. It isn’t exactly like the pure tier system you see at Epcot and Hollywood Studios. Instead, you are only restricted to being able to select 1 FastPass from Pandora (either Flight of Passage OR Na’vi River Journey).

How much does FastPass+ cost?

FastPasses are free.

There are ways to purchase additional FastPasses, though. But, every ticket is eligible to book (in advance) 3 free FastPasses per ticket day.

Can I use FastPass+ during Extra Magic Hours?

FastPasses are not available during Extra Magic Hours.

How far in advance can I book Fastpasses?

Guests staying at a Walt Disney World resort as well as some select offsite locations can book their FastPasses 60 days in advance.

Everybody else can book FastPasses at 30 days out.

Annual Passholders without a resort reservation can book up to 7 days worth of FastPasses at 30 days out, too.

Do I need a FastPass for everybody in my party?

Every person that plans to enter the FastPass+ line needs to have a FastPass. 

We get this question a lot in regards to FastPasses for characters.

Even if you’re just going along with your child so they can meet Mickey Mouse, you’ll still need to have a FastPass to enter the line with them.

What happens if an attraction breaks down during my FastPass window?

If an attraction breaks down or if weather closes an attraction during your FastPass+ window you’ll receive a push notification in the My Disney Experience App.

Typically you’ll receive another FastPass that you’ll be able to use at any (or nearly any) attraction for the remainder of the day.

You wont have to make a new reservation and there wont be a return window – you just pick an attraction and scan your MagicBand or ticket when you get there.

FastPass+ suggestions to save to your phone

Want to have the FastPass+ suggestions on your camera roll? Press the image below from your phone to save to your camera roll.

FastPass tier


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