There is rarely a time that I am not asked by my friends, “What is this FastPass+? Which rides should I pick?” When it comes to planning a Walt Disney World Resort vacation, this is probably one of the most frustrating yet important parts of your planning. So, what exactly is FastPass+ (FP+)? It’s the time-saving, no-waiting-in-line, pick-your-favorites-ahead-of-time service offered to guests who visit the Walt Disney World Resort! Disney’s FastPass+ is unique among amusement parks, because it’s free and you can reserve your times before you ever step foot in the parks! Check out this link to learn more about the process of selecting your FastPass+ choices!
Once you have picked your vacation dates, you should plan what days you will be visiting the four Walt Disney World parks. Making a schedule of your days is important when you are selecting your FastPass+ and Advanced Dining Reservations. For my family, we make plans to visit one park each day, but many people like the option of Park Hopping.
Disney’s Magic Kingdom tops all four parks with the amount of rides and attractions that offer FastPass+ reservations. This is a good thing and maybe a bad thing! With so many options, how do you start to decide? Every family is different and there are literally hundreds of ways to tour Disney’s Magic Kingdom Park. Some say it’s important to hit the big attractions first. Others will suggest touring the park in a counter-clockwise manner, since so many people start off by heading to their right.
Of course, every attraction listed here is going to be on the top of SOMEONE’S “Must Do” list. Let’s break the attractions down into a few categories to help you make the right decision for your family’s trip. You will notice that some attractions fall into more than one category. If you have small children, be sure to read about Rider Switch and Fastpass+.
High demand attractions are those that consistently have long stand-by lines as well as tend to run out of FastPass+ times quickly. Let’s discuss some of the high demand attractions:
- Big Thunder Mountain Railroad – Take a trip on a runaway gold mine train!
- Enchanted Tales with Belle – Enter Belle’s cottage and enjoy a fantastic journey to have storytime with one of the most beloved princesses in Fantasyland!
- Peter Pan’s Flight – “Second star to the right and straight on ’til morning!”
- Seven Dwarfs Mine Train – The newest addition to Fantasyland has been popular since it opened in the spring of 2014!
- Space Mountain – This is a classic! This zippy roller coaster is completely in the dark!
- Splash Mountain – The unique characters from Song of the South make this log fume ride everyone’s Laughing Place!
Walt Disney wanted to create a park that was truly built for children of all ages. There are so many rides and attractions that speak to the magic and wonder of a small child.
- Buzz Lightyear Space Ranger Spin – Travel to infinity and beyond while helping Buzz defeat the Evil Emperor Zurg!
- Monster’s, Inc Laugh Floor – Scream with laughter at stand-up comedy that’s all fun without the frights!
- The Barnstormer – Join the Great Goofini for a ride above the New Fantasyland. Perfect for “junior” coaster riders!
- Dumbo the Flying Elephant – Now you can say you’ve seen everything, when you see this elephant fly!
- it’s a small world – A trip around the world showing how unique and similar we really are!
- The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh – Deep in the Hundred Acre Wood, an indoor ride for a blustery day
- Mad Tea Party – You’d have to be mad to skip a whirl in these crazed cups!
- Peter Pan’s Flight – Fly into the sky, 2nd star on the right, to Neverland!
- The Magic Carpets of Aladdin – Take a ride through Agrabah – watch for the camel! He spits!
DIStracted Tip: For those traveling with small children, check out my previous article about height restrictions to make sure your little ones can enjoy these rides!
For some guests, meeting the characters is one of the highlights of a trip to the Walt Disney World Resort. Luckily, meet-and-greets with some of the fan favorites are available as FastPass+ selections. Many will argue that these are not an effective use of your FastPass+, since there are other ways to meet characters (such as character meals – Crystal Palace, Akershus Royal Banquet Hall and Chef Mickey’s to name a few). However, sometimes using a FastPass+ is the best way to squeeze in that one character that your child MUST meet!
- Mickey Mouse – Meets at the Town Square Theater
- Ariel – Meets at Ariel’s Grotto
- Belle – Enchanted Tales with Belle
DIStracted Tip: Elsa & Anna have now moved to Epcot! At this time, Fastpass+ is not an option for that meet. For more information please see Do You Want to Meet Anna and Elsa?
You can use FP+ 5 minutes before your scheduled time and up to 15 minutes after. So, if your FP+ is scheduled from 1-2pm, you can arrive anytime between at 12:55 and 2:15! Be aware, for attractions with scheduled showtimes (such as Mickey’s PhilharMagic), you will not be permitted to enter if you arrive after the doors have closed. It is best to arrive on time when using a FastPass+ selection for any scheduled show.
As is noted on the Magical DIStractions FastPass+ page, after a guest has redeemed their first three selections, or the redemption windows have passed, they are able to make another FastPass+ selection at an in-park kiosk. Once they’ve used the fourth, they can select another, and so on. Guests with valid park-hopping privileges are able to make their additional selection(s) at another park. Those selections must be made at a kiosk in the park where the desired experience is located. Guests within the same party can elect different FastPass+ choices. Guests should be aware that not all attractions will still have FastPass+ available later in the day and their selections may be limited.
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