Nearly every attraction at Disney World has at least 2 lines: a Standby Line and a FastPass+ Line.
The line names are pretty self-explanatory but the FastPass+ Line is what you would enter if you had a FastPass+ reservation and the Standby Line is what you use if you don't.
There are a few attractions that have a 3rd line: a Single Rider Line. But, just what are "Single Rider" lines and should you use them?
Single Rider Lines are available at 4 attractions and are located in 3 different parks:
- Test Track - Epcot
- Rock 'n' Roller Coaster - Hollywood Studios
- Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run - Hollywood Studios
- Expedition Everest - Animal Kingdom
Single Rider Lines work a little bit differently than the other 2 lines
I once heard somebody say they couldn't enter the line as a group because the sign said "Single Rider". They interpreted that to mean that you can't enter the line with anybody you knew.
But that isn't what "single rider" means.
Single Rider Lines are located on attractions where they frequently will need a "single rider" to fill a car or ride vehicle.
In the regular lines (both Standby and FastPass) Disney does a fantastic job of not splitting up parties when they board a ride, but that means that they often have times when a group has an odd number which results in an empty seat.
So, to fill those empty seats they utilize that separate line which is filled with people that don't mind riding as a "single" person (and not with their party or group).
So what exactly happens when you decide to use the Single Rider Line?
First, you have to be at least 7 years old to use the Single Rider Line. But, keep in mind that not all 7 year olds may be ready to ride an attraction by themselves.
If you have a child that is old enough but seems hesitant, Single Rider may not be for you.
You can enter the line as a group but you WILL be split up. Sometimes you might luck out and be on separate rows, but other times you may find yourself on totally different ride cycles and it could be a few minutes before everybody meets back up again.
Single Rider Lines (much like the FastPass+ Lines) often bypass some of the fun interactive aspects of some of the queues.
For example, Single Riders at Test Track skip the part of the queue where you design a car to test. If those things are important to you, you may want to skip Single Rider.
When the Single Rider Line gets to the point where people are boarding the ride, they basically just stand and wait until they hear a Cast Member say "Single Rider needed in line XXX".
Then, the next person in line jumps into the spot identified by the Cast Member.
And, when you get to the front of the line you'll need to be paying attention because there usually isn't much time between when they call for a single rider and when the ride starts to board. They keep things moving at a rapid pace!
When should you use a Single Rider Line?
Single Rider lines can make sense in a lot of instances.
Test Track Single Rider Line is a great option because of the FastPass+ tiers. It allows you to use one of your Tier 1 FastPass+ options for Soarin' or Frozen Ever After.
Expedition Everest is fantastic if you want to get multiple rides on this popular roller coaster OR if you want to save a FastPass+ for one of the Pandora attractions.
Rock 'n' Roller Coaster Single Rider is usually faster than Standby, but it seems to run the least efficiently.
SO - if you are over the age of 7 and are totally okay sitting next to strangers (which I love, especially if they are first-time riders!) Single Rider lines are a fantastic option to help you get more attractions done with minimal waits.
Shannon has a fantastic video that explains things even better AND as a bonus she's got some graphics that I think you'd find handy.
Note: This video was created before the latest Single Rider option (Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run) opened up.
One final note:
Flight of Passage was designed to also have a Single Rider Line, however, as of right now that line hasn't been used. I'm not sure if that will change, but they do have the availability to add it in the future if they want to!