Attraction Tips – The Tomorowland Transit Authority PeopleMover

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Let me start by saying that this is not a ride you need a great deal of information about in order to ride it.  The Tomorrowland Transit Authority PeopleMover is seldom crowded. In fact, if you ride this attraction during the first few hours that the Magic Kingdom is open, I’m pretty sure that Len Testa gets an involuntary twitch. That said, it’s a ride that is well worth doing, and should be on anyone’s list when visiting Walt Disney World’s original park.

The escalator entrance to the TTA PeopleMover

The reason for that is that the PeopleMover is a piece of Disney history. The original version of the ride opened in Disneyland in 1967 as part of the new Tomorrowland project, and made its way out to the East coast as part of Walt Disney World. The PeopleMover was Walt Disney’s attempt to show the world how we could solve the problems of city congestion and transportation all in one. Although it ended up being a form of transit around Tomorrowland in the Magic Kingdom, its original intent was to deliver guests, workers and citizens of EPCOT, the city, around the grounds and to and from their workplace.

Tip: If you want to see how the PeopleMover was originally intended to be used, look along the route of the ride for the original model of EPCOT. On the model you’ll see small PeopleMovers taking workers into the city center.  You can also see the original designs at One Man’s Dream in Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

The vista of the Tomorrowland Speedway from the PeopleMover

Today, we get to ride the PeopleMover to enjoy a grand circle tour of Tomorrowland and see what attractions await us inside. It is intended to give guests a great view of the wonders of Tomorrowland and a peek at what lies beyond in the Hub and Fantasyland. The ride is a fantastic way to relax and enjoy yourself during the busy times of the day and is usually very easy to get on whenever you’d like.

Tip: Save the PeopleMover for when the park is exceptionally crowded, usually between lunchtime and 4 or 5 p.m. During this time of day, the PeopleMover is an easy and relaxing ride, and you are not missing out on prime ride time with any of the bigger rides.

Keep your hands, arm, feet and legs inside the car at all times!

To board the ride, you’ll need to trek through Tomorrowland to the reverse side of The Lunching Pad, across from the Carousel of Progress.  There is a moving escalator that takes guests up the ramp to the second level where the boarding area for the ride is housed. The escalator drops you off onto solid ground for mere moments before you circle through a couple of switchbacks and onto a rotating turntable that follows the cars as you load.

Seeing Tomorrowland from the PeopleMover is a real treat.

Once on board, sit back, relax and enjoy your tour. Although the narration has changed over the years, your basic ride is a trip through Tomorrowland, with some show scenes inside the various buildings. There are some very dark sections of this ride, especially when traveling through Space Mountain, so make sure your children or yourself are not scared of the dark. But there are some fantastic sights to see as well.  In addition to the model of Progress City, the original EPCOT vision of Walt Disney, you’ll see inside Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin, over look Stitch’s Great Escape, go inside Space Mountain and get a great vista over to the Hub and Cinderella Castle.

Tip: Be on the lookout for Hidden Mickeys. There is one in the show scene of a lady getting her hair done, positioned on her belt buckle, and another as you go through Mickey’s Star Traders, in the mural on the top of the room.

The twists and turns through Tomorrowland are quite fun.

The PeopleMover is an easy ride to get on and off of, and makes for a fun way to relax and enjoy yourself during crowded times of the day. Some of my favorite memories of the Magic Kingdom are riding this ride at night, when the neon signs of Tomorrowland are at their brightest. What memories do you have of the PeopleMover, and what tips would you share for riding it?

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Posted on July 30, 2012

14 Responses to “Attraction Tips – The Tomorowland Transit Authority PeopleMover”

  • We rode this month for the first time. It broke down several times that day and when it came up in our tourning plan there was a 40 minute wait!! I was amazed until I noticed it was not running and people were standing in line for a broken ride. We finally rode later in the day when there was not a line. It was great. I enjoyed sitting back and seeing the park from that view. It gave my boys an idea about Space Mountain, which they have been too scared to ride. I really liked seeing inside the rides. I plan on riding at night next time.

  • Everyone in my family loves this as a late afternoon ride when you just need to unwind and relax for a few minutes.

    Our favorite part? It provides once of the most unique and best views of the castle in the entire park.

  • Yes this is a great way to take a break and have a sit down when you’ve walked lots of miles.

  • My son is just now reaching the height requirement for Space Mountain so we use the child swap to ride that. While one of us rides SM, the other goes on the Peoplemover with our son, and often the timing is just right that we meet back afterwards and swap out. We have also gotten to see Space Mountain with the lights on a few times while riding. This was actually my son’s very first ride ever at Disneyworld!

    • This was both of my son’s first ride in 09 we will be back in December 12 and will be my new 1yo son’s first as well, after his first hair cut on Main street

  • My husband and I traveled the Peoplemover three times in a row without disembarking last May 2011 during a rainy visit to Epcot. I was super surprised that more people weren’t on the ride; what a great way to get out of the humidity and take cover while discovering some of the inner workings of the park. You see something new each time, too! I can’t believe people would skip it. It was truly a highlight for me!

  • On the first day of our first trip to the World, we got a picture of our son, wearing his Mickey ear’s, looking out over MK with Cinderella’s castle in the background. To this day, it is still one of our favorite pictures from our Disney vacations. It doesn’t compare with the works of Tom Bricker, but my wife is still impressed with how well it came out.

  • Wedway People Mover

  • Can’t beat hearing “Paging Mr. Morrow, Mr. Tom Morrow”!!

  • This is my Mom’s favorite ride. Growing up, we used to all ride Space Mountain as a family, then my brother and Dad would ride again. My Mom and I would ride the Peoplemover on repeat until we saw my brother & Dad were off of Space Mountain (yes, without getting off!) We also used to take a ride as a family before getting on Space Mountain to see if the lights were on and how long the line was! Of course that was when you could see the line from the Peoplemover!

  • This is actually one of my daughters favourite rides and she’s 15! We must have rode it 10+ times this trip. Highlight was getting evacuated off it one day when it broke down just after seeing Space Mountain with the lights on – strange highlight I know, but it was fun.

  • by Erica Barthel on July 31, 2012, at 9:52 am EST

    I love the TTA. It is one of my most favorite attractions at WDW. I love the laid back experience. The best memory I have is the first time riding it. My two sons age 9 and 15 rode in a different car then me and my husband. Imagine their delight when the cars pulled away from each other right in between our car and theirs. They happily waved goodbye to us with startled faces :)

  • Love the People Mover! My tip comes from an unexpected discovery on our trip there last month. My 3 year old daughter and I hopped on just after dark while my husband and son were at Stitch’s Great Escape. I had brought dollar store glow necklaces into the park for nighttime enjoyment, but little did I know that just one necklace on my daughter and one around my neck illuminated our faces enough to keep her from getting scared in the dark parts of the ride! Such a perfect happenstance that I will never forget.

  • by JosephSchmoe on August 1, 2012, at 8:32 am EST

    While I am disappointed they changed the narration from a retro-kitchy feel to a boring, flavorless sales pitch, the TTA remains on of my favorite attractions at WDW.
    The technology alone should fascinate those interested in saving the planet. But what I most enjoy is the scope and planning involved not only in the TTA but how it affords the rider a a grand tour of that half of the Magic Kingdom, as well as how it all fits together so well.
    We ride the Blue Line. Do some investigative work and find out where the Red and Green Lines are. ;-)