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5 ways to ride Rise of the Resistance without long waits

Home5 ways to ride Rise of the Resistance without long waits
5 ways to ride Rise of the Resistance without long waits

Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance remains one of the most popular attractions in all of Walt Disney World, but if you want to ride it without spending hours in line, you’ll need to plan ahead.

Here are 5 ways to ride Rise of the Resistance without a long wait.

How to get on Rise of the Resistance without waiting in long lines

For most guests, there are 5 main ways that will allow you to ride Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance with the least amount of waiting:

  1. Pay to ride using an Individual Lightning Lane selection (best option)
  2. Ride during Early Theme Park Entry (onsite guests only)
  3. Rope drop it (aka ride right when the park opens)
  4. Hop in line right before the park closes
  5. Ride during Extended Theme Park Hours (onsite Deluxe and Deluxe villa guests only)

    Although those 5 are the most common ways to skip the long waits at Rise of the Resistance, there are a few other ways that might apply for you:

  6. Ride while on a VIP tour
  7. Stay at the Star Wars Galactic Starcruiser resort
How to ride Rise of the Resistance without a wait

Make sure to check out our post on how to Ride Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure without waiting in lines, too!

Let’s take a look at all of these options:

Pay to ride Rise of the Resistance using an Individual Lightning Lane Selection (best option)

Rise of the Resistance does have a Lightning Lane. And if it is in your budget, this is the best way to ride Rise of the Resistance.

If you’ve been away from the parks for a while, “Lightning Lane” is the new name for the old FastPass line. And, just like with the old FastPass+ system, lots of attractions in all 4 theme parks have Lightning Lanes.

For most of the attractions with Lightning Lanes, if you want to use it, you’ll need to purchase Genie+ (which is the name for the new pay-to-use FastPass system) for yourself and every member of your party that wishes to use it.

rise of the resistance scanner

But, while the Lightning Lanes for MOST attractions are accessible with Genie+, the most high-demand attractions – like Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance are NOT.

The Lightning Lanes at the most popular attractions in each park are only available to general guests by purchasing an à la carte reservation.

Hollywood Studios Individual Lightning Lane Attractions

There are 2 attractions at Hollywood Studios that have Lightning Lanes that are not a part of Genie+:

Disney officially refers to these as “Individual Lightning Lane Selections” (which is a mouthful) but we often refer to them as “pay-to-ride” attractions.

Aside from a few special situations, if you’d prefer to not pay-to-ride Rise of the Resistance via the Lightning Lane, you’ll need to use the Standby Line. We have tips for how to minimize your waits using it down below.

How much does it cost to ride Rise of the Resistance?

Currently, the average cost to snag one of the pay-to-ride Rise of the Resistance return time spots is $15.00 per person.

And, unlike other Individual Lightning Lane attractions that have seen their prices fluctuate depending on demand and how busy the park is predicted to be, Rise of the Resistance has consistently been at $15.00 since this new system was implemented.

Do I have to purchase Genie+ to ride Rise of the Resistance?

No. Since Rise of the Resistance is not part of Genie+, you do NOT have to purchase it if you want to pay-to-ride.

You may, however, choose to purchase it to use with the Genie+ eligible attractions in the park.

Read more about How Genie+ and Lightning Lane Selections Differ

How to book an Individual Lightning Lane spot for Rise of the Resistance:

  1. Make sure you’ve downloaded the My Disney Experience app. It is not uncommon to have payment issues, so it is also handy to have a secondary payment method nearby just in case.
  2. A few minutes before 7:00 am, open up the app and hit the “+” button at the bottom of the screen and tap “View My Genie Day and Tip Board”.
  3. Navigate to the Tip Board, and, if necessary, change the park you are viewing. You can do that by tapping “Change Park” in the upper-left corner of the Tip Board.
  4. Time is of the essence, so use a watch or something with a clock that can count down the seconds. Refresh as the clock is turning to 7:00 am.
  5. Select Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance. Important Note: If you plan to also snag a Genie+ spot for Slinky Dog Dash, we recommend you divide up those tasks between 2 people in your traveling party OR if you are unable to do that, secure Slinky Dog Dash first and then purchase your spot for Rise of the Resistance.
    Rise of the Resistance my disney experience

  6. Choose your preferred time and select “Continue”. Important Note: there are wide-spread reports (and we have experienced it ourselves) of having the return times vary greatly from what you selected to what you actually received. If this happens to you, go ahead and complete the transaction and then visit the Guest Services Team (the people wearing blue shirts stationed inside the parks at the blue umbrellas) to see if they can help.
    Rise of the Resistance My Disney Experience
  7. If necessary, you can edit your party at this time. Then, tap “Confirm Party”.
    Rise of the Resistance My Disney Experience
  8. Review your details and hit “Continue”.
    Rise of the Resistance my disney experience
  9. Finally, confirm your contact and payment information and agree to the Terms and Condition before hitting “Purchase”.

Learn more about How to Book Individual Lightning Lane Selections

The available pay-to-ride reservation spots are limited and snagging them can be very competitive, but with a little preparation, you should have decent luck getting one.

One thing to note:

Onsite guests are going to have a huge advantage when it comes to purchasing an Individual Lightning Lane Selection for Rise of the Resistance because onsite guests can make their pay-to-ride purchases at 7:00 am, but offsite guests have to wait until the park opens before they can make theirs.

And, with the popularity of Rise of Resistance, the spots can go very, very fast.

In fact, according to thrill-data.com, on an average day, most initial spots are gone by 7:10 am, and while there are occasionally a few spots still available after the park opens, nearly everything will be gone by the time 9:00 am rolls around (which means offsite guests will likely need to use one of the other methods below).

Rise of the Resistance Lightning Lane Tip: Lots of people snag Lightning Lane spots right at 7:00 am and those spots are held for 10 minutes. But, if the transaction isn’t completed – for example, a guest changes their mind or a payment method doesn’t go through – quite a few of those spots will open back up again around 7:10 -7:15 am.

That means, if you don’t get a spot right at 7:00 am, keep trying (at least until park opening) by refreshing the My Disney Experience App. On Apple devices, you do that by pulling down on the screen.

Also, keep in mind that while you can purchase Lightning Lane passes for parks you wish to hop to, each person can only purchase a maximum of 2 Lightning Lane passes per day.

Confused about what you should book first at Hollywood Studios? Check out this handy chart for help:

Hollywood Studios booking order

Ride during Early Theme Park Entry (onsite guests only)

Staying onsite and trying to avoid paying anything extra to ride Rise of the Resistance?

Early Theme Park Entry (which lets guests into the park 30 minutes before official park opening) may be your best bet.

Unlike Extended Evening Theme Park Hours, Early Theme Park Entry (which is only available to onsite guests) happens every day, which means they are a bit easier to work into a schedule.

Early Entry sign at Hollywood Studios

Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance is open during Early Theme Park Entry, and sometimes they even begin letting guests on before the early entry is officially scheduled to start.

But to be successful with this approach, you’re going to need to make sure you arrive to Hollywood Studios ahead of the majority of the crowds.

Read more about Early Theme Park Entry at Walt Disney World

How to get to Hollywood Studios

Here’s what you need to know about how to get to Hollywood Studios in time for Early Theme Park Entry:

Bus

bus stop

The first buses typically begin running about 1 hour before Early Theme Park Entry.

The goal is to be on that first bus, which means you’ll need to be at the bus stop about 90 minutes before Early Theme Park Entry begins.

Read more about Navigating with Disney Buses

Skyliner

The Disney Skyliner can also form long lines, and although it moves quickly, you’ll still want to be at the front of the pack.

disney skyliner

Look for the Skyliner to start running around 7:30 am.

And, just like with the buses, you’ll want to be at the front of the line to board. That means you’ll want to aim to be down to the station no later than 90 minutes before Early Theme Park Entry begins.

Read more about the Disney Skyliner gondola system

Car

If you are driving, the parking lot booths typically open 1 hour before Early Theme Park Entry begins.

Oftentimes, however, cars will begin lining up at the booths before that, so arriving a few minutes before that 1 hour mark is a good idea.

Hollywood Studios parking lot

Read more about driving and parking at Walt Disney World

Walk

If you are staying at a resort that is within walking distance of Hollywood Studios (Yacht Club, Beach Club & Beach Club Villas, Boardwalk Inn & Villas, Swan, Dolphin, Swan Reserve), getting to Hollywood Studios ahead of the majority of the crowds is relatively easy, because you’ll be able to walk.

How to walk to Hollywood Studios

We recommend you plan to arrive by foot to the front of the park about 75 minutes before Early Theme Park Entry begins.

For reference, the walk from Beach Club to Hollywood Studios is about 20 minutes, more if you have shorter legged people with you and less if you tend to walk fast. But, 20 minutes is a good average to use.

Hollywood Studios entrance

If you arrive much earlier than that, you may be held back a bit from the gates, but the earlier you arrive the easier it will make it to position yourself ahead of the bus, Skyliner, and car crowds.

Plus, being able to walk to Hollywood Studios is a huge advantage, so it makes sense to use it!

Once you get inside the park, to get to Rise of the Resistance, you’ll be making a LEFT out in front of Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway.

rope drop at hollywood studios

You should see Cast Members holding signs directing you, but if not, make a left in front of the Chinese Theater (where Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway is housed) and head along the path next to Echo Lake.

Be at the front at rope drop for regular park entry (good for offsite guests)

If you are staying offsite, it is likely the Individual Lightning Lane passes will be gone by the time you can purchase one (but still check right at park opening, just in case!).

And since offsite guests aren’t eligible for Early Theme Park Entry, your 2 best bets for minimizing your waits will be to be at the front of the pack for regular park entry or hop in line at the end of the night.

If staying until the end of the night won’t work for you, or if you prefer to get your ride out of the way, being at the front of the pack when the park opens for offsite guests will be your best bet.

You’ll still need to arrive to the park early. Aim to be to the gates about 1 hour before the park officially opens. If you are traveling during an extra busy time of the year (like the holidays), you may need to even be earlier.

rope drop hollywood studios

You’ll be directed away from the onsite guests to separate lines. You’ll need to stay at the front of the pack of offsite people if you want to keep your wait for Rise of the Resistance as low as possible.

Once offsite guests are allowed into the park, you’ll want to follow the same path as we laid out for the onsite guests above: make a left at Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway (the Chinese Theater) and then follow the path along Echo Lake

From there, you should see Cast Members directing you to the end of the standby line.

Ride at the end of the night (good for both onsite and offsite guests)

Another great option for offsite guests or even onsite guests that plan to arrive to the park later in the day is to hop in the line at the end of the evening.

We recommend you don’t try to cut it too close, but as long as you are in line before the park closes, you’ll be allowed to ride.

Rise of the Resistance queue

There is a downside to this approach, though.

Although ride closures are less frequent now than they were when the attraction first opened, interruptions do still happen. And, if one happens late in the day, the ride may not be available before the park closes, which means you could miss out on getting a ride.

That doesn’t happen very often anymore, but it is something to keep in mind.

Ride during Extended Evening Theme Park Hours (onsite Deluxe and Deluxe Villa guests only)

Unlike Early Theme Park Entry which is available to all onsite guests, Extended Evening Theme Park Hours are only available for Disney Deluxe and Deluxe Villa guests.

But don’t get too excited about this perk — yet.

Galaxy's Edge at night

Because, instead of being every day – Extended Theme Park Hours are only on select days and at select parks. And right now, Hollywood Studios only has 1 (yes, just one) Extended Evening Theme Park Hour scheduled.

It just so happens that it is scheduled during Easter week (Wednesday, April 13), which makes sense since that week has traditionally been one of the busiest of the year.

Hopefully, Disney will eventually add additional Extended Theme Park Hours dates, so definitely make sure you check on that before your trip.

Because if you are lucky enough to be traveling at a time when one is available, the Extended Evening Theme Park Hours will be a fantastic option for riding Rise of the Resistance with minimal waits.

Keep in mind, though, that you’ll either need to have a Park Pass reservation for Hollywood Studios or have Park Hopping options on your tickets to participate.

Other ways to minimize waits:

There are a few other ways to minimize your waits at Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance:

VIP Tours

VIP Tours are another option for minimizing your waits on Rise of the Resistance.

Although they are not an inexpensive way to skip the line, if one is in your budget, using a VIP tour guide will definitely keep your waits short on nearly every attraction at WDW.

Read more in our Guide to VIP Tours at Walt Disney World

Stay at the Star Wars Galactic Starcruiser resort

Guests staying at the Star Wars Galactic Starcruiser resort will also be provided a one-time entry into both Rise of the Resistance and Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run.

Those rides are included in the cost of your stay at this new Star Wars-themed boutique resort.

Read more about the Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser

Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance FAQs

Does Rise of the Resistance have a Single Rider Line?

Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance technically has 3 lines:

  • Standby
  • Lightning Lane
  • Single Rider (not in use)

But, while the Standby Line and Lightning Lane are currently in use, the Single Rider Line at Rise of the Resistance is not open and there is no word yet on when that might happen.

But, we know from experience at other attractions with this option – like Test Track and Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster – that Single Rider Lines can significantly reduce your wait, so if Disney does ever decide to open the Single Rider Line on Rise of the Resistance, that will be a good option to help with long lines, too.

Can I use Rider Switch on Rise of the Resistance?

Yes, you can.

But, if you want everyone to use the Lightning Lane (both Group A and Group B), you’ll need to purchase Individual Lightning Lanes for everyone.

You can save some money by having Group A wait in the Standby line, since Group B will be allowed to ride with the Rider Switch (also called Rider Swap) via the Lightning Lane.

Read more about how Rider Switch works at Walt Disney World

Can I use the Disability Access Service (DAS) at Rise of the Resistance?

The Disability Access Service is *only* available for registered guests that, due to a disability, have difficulty tolerating the wait in a standard line or queue.

And to be clear, Disney’s official policy states:

“A Guest whose disability is based on the necessity to use a wheelchair or scooter does not need DAS. Depending on the experience, Guests utilizing a wheelchair or scooter will either wait in the standard queue or receive a return time at the attraction that is comparable to the current standby wait.”

But, while some attractions are available to be booked in the DAS system ahead of arrival, Rise of the Resistance is not.

Instead, registered guests using DAS will need to request their return time after they enter the park (we recommend doing this first thing!).

Don’t these methods still require waiting?

To be fair, with any method other than purchasing an Individual Lightning Lane spot, you will be spending some time waiting.

But, the goal is to do as much of the waiting as possible outside regular theme park hours. It just makes more sense to wait an hour before the park opens or after the park closes than it does to spend precious park touring time doing it.

So yes, while you’ll still be technically waiting, if you use one of the methods listed above you’ll free yourself up to tour the rest of the park with as minimal lines as possible.

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Heather Thomas