One of the biggest differences in visiting Disney World now as opposed to when I was a kid was the introduction of FastPass and then FastPass+. Disney used to be much simpler- you went to the park, bought tickets at the gate and enjoyed a day at the park. In some ways I really miss those days but FastPass+ does give everyone the opportunity to skip the lines at rides for free! That was my dream as a teenager when I was waiting for an hour to ride Peter Pan’s Flight- which you still will all these years later because that ride is as popular as it ever was. There is a lot about FastPass+ that people don’t understand or take advantage of. This was never more evident to me than the morning I sat in a chair at the salon and taught my hairdresser how to book FastPasses with the My Disney Experience app. She’s also a Florida native but it had been several years since she’d been to Disney and had bought passes and visited the parks but they just waited in the standby lines. That’s okay for some rides like Pirates of the Caribbean where on most days the standby line moves pretty quickly but for rides like Seven Dwarfs Mine Train where they let approximately 4 standby guests through to 40 FastPass+ holders, you’ll be waiting forever.
This is a recent photo of the FastPass+ queue for Seven Dwarfs Mine Train.
The Standby queue’s wait time was 130 minutes which is about standard for a fairly busy day at The Magic Kingdom. I’ll write another post on which rides I recommend a FastPass for and which ones I think you can skip another time.
A couple of important things to remember are that Disney Resort guests can book Fastpass+ reservations 60 days in advance if they’ve already purchased park tickets while every other ticket holder can book 30 days in advance. Every ticket holder is allotted 3 FastPass+ reservations per day BUT once you use your first 3 FastPasses you are able to schedule additional FastPasses, one at a time, until there are no FastPasses left for the day. I think our FastPass record is somewhere around 12 or maybe 15 in a day but that was a fairly slow day at The Magic Kingdom and we were there for a long time. If you’re at the parks during a busy time you really shouldn’t expect that. You can also make FastPass+ reservations if you buy tickets the day of your visit. You can either link your ticket(s) to the My Disney Experience app if you have it on your phone (that’s my recommendation) or you can make or modify a FastPass+ reservation on a FastPass+ kiosk located at each of the parks.
So, to get started, download the My Disney Experience app on your phone and create an account. Then you’ll need to link your tickets to your account. You cannot make FastPass+ reservations without a valid park admission. Another important thing to note is that you can make FastPass+ reservations for a total of 7 days. So, if you purchased a 10 day ticket and reserved a room on Disney property you could only make reservations for 7 of those days 60 days in advance. Then you’d have to use your first day of FastPasses before you could make reservations for another day.
In order to get to the main menu in the app go to your avatar on the bottom of the screen and swipe up.
In the main menu find the FP+ button and tap.
This is what the FastPass+ screen looks like and as you can see, we already have some FastPasses scheduled. The next step to add new FastPasses is to tap the plus sign.
Then you can create your FastPass+ party and tap continue.
After that you’ll choose the date and which park you want to go to. You can only choose one park per day. BUT if you were to go to a park and not want to stay you can cancel your unused FastPasses and book whatever is left of your allotment of 3 at a different park or if you have used your initial 3 you can make more reservations, one at a time, at a different park. Assuming, of course, that you’ve purchased tickets with the Park Hopper option.
After you pick a date scroll down to select a park.
Then you can choose your FastPasses from what’s available but keep in mind that they have to be at least an hour apart. You can also see what’s available by morning, afternoon or evening OR you can choose a specific time. Very often I prefer choosing a specific time so that I can line my FastPasses up as closely as possible to that 1 hour window.
So, either choose one of these or swipe left to see a specific time.
When you’ve used up the first three and schedule your bonus pass you do not have to wait an hour before scheduling the next one. You can schedule an additional bonus as soon as you’ve tapped your Magic Band or your pass to get into the FastPass line. That’s how we’ve ended up getting so many in a day. And this tip works best at The Magic Kingdom. Technically it’s still possible at the other parks but they just don’t have as many rides which means they won’t have as many FastPasses available or the ones that are available are for shows which often times don’t really need a FastPass.
After you’ve made and confirmed your selection, you can choose same day to make additional reservations rather than having to go back and do it all over again.
Once you tap Same Day, you start the process over again until you’ve made your three selections for that day.
You can also modify your FastPass+ times, change the number of people and change rides altogether but that’s a post for another day. I hope all of that was clear, I wanted to make it as detailed as possible. I just remember that at first the process of scheduling FastPasses was a little daunting. Have any questions or thoughts? Sound off in the comments.