If you’ve been to Disney within the last 10 years or so, I’m sure you have seen their fastpass system. If the line was too long all you had to do was go to the FastPass (FP) section, put your ticket in the machine, and it would spit out a slip with a return time so you could skip the line. It was great! You could only get one at a time, but while you were waiting for your FP window you were able to ride a couple of other rides, so it worked out well. It seemed like a pretty good system, but Disney likes to upgrade and improve the experience for the guests.
Now, they have implemented FastPass+ (FP+) and what that does is allow people to sign up for FPs before they are even on vacation. FP+ seems to be doing to rides what the dining plan has done to the restaurants. Just my opinion though. So now if you are staying on property you can reserve FPs for certain rides up to 60 days in advance and 30 days in advance if you are staying off property. They also have different categories where you can choose 2 rides from one category and 1 ride from another, for a total of 3 FPs. The really popular rides will be in the category where you get one choice. For example, you cannot get FPs for both Soarin and Test Track, you have to pick one. We used FP+ when we were there in January and while it was fun to sit around the table the night before and look at all the ride choices for the next day, I’m not sure we’re going to want to do that 60 days out…but I digress.
The reason for writing this morning is because not only have they taken away the FP machines (and replaced them with kiosks at different points in the park, instead of at the rides), but they are now testing FP+ only use for Toy Story Mania and for Be Our Guest (BOG) restaurant for lunch. So what that means is no more walk-ups. That’s right, they are testing the possibility of doing away with the standby line for Toy Story Mania. The busiest ride at Hollywood Studies (always MGM to me)! Maybe I’m missing something, but I feel like less people are going to be able to experience this ride now. I’ve heard rumors that they are expanding the ride and adding another track, so we’ll see. For BOG it means that you won’t be able to just wait in line for lunch when you get hungry, you will have to sign up for a FP…so does that make it a reservation? If it is like having a reservation, it kind of takes away from the “quick service” aspect.
They are only testing these ideas. So we will have to wait and see how it works out. I love Disney, but this is why planning a Disney World trip is so stressful for people, especially first timers. You have to schedule so much now. I’ve seen pictures of people’s laminated schedules, so they make sure they don’t forget where they are supposed to be at what time.
What do you think? Do you think this is overboard, even for Disney?
Thanks for reading!