FastPass+ Coming For All Guests at Disney’s Hollywood Studios and Epcot

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fastpass-kiosk

Bye Bye FASTPASS Machines

As MyMagic+ continues to move forward, according to reliable sources both inside and outside Disney, FastPass+ will be rolled out for both on-site and off-site guests at both Disney’s Hollywood Studios and Epcot within the next week. Disney’s Hollywood Studios is expected to make the change over on January 21, and Epcot is expected to become all FastPass+ starting on January 23. This means that Legacy FASTPASS machines that distribute paper FASTPASS tickets will be turned off, and guests will only be able to make FastPass+ reservations.

If off-site guests would like to make a FastPass+ reservation, they will need to visit one of the FastPass+ kiosks found within the park to reserve their ride times on the day they visit the park. Much like the previous roll outs, non-Disney resort guests will currently not be able to use the My Disney Experience app or website to make FastPass+ reservations. To make a FastPass+ reservation, off-property guests will need to use their RFID-enabled ticket to access the FastPass+ kiosks, as they do not currently have access to MagicBands.

Guests who are staying at a Disney resort will have the ability to make FastPass+ reservations up to 60 days in advance via the My Disney Experience app or website. If they have not made them ahead of time, they can also do so in the parks at the FastPass+ kiosks.

Like previous testing, guests will only be able to obtain 3 FastPass+ reservations per day, all at the same park. Unlike at the other two Walt Disney World parks, both Epcot and Disney’s Hollywood Studios have a tiered system set up, which is set to continue. At both parks, guests must choose ONE attraction from Column A and TWO attractions from Column B

Here’s the line up of attraction groupings you can choose from:

Epcot

Column A (Choose ONE preference)

Column B (Choose TWO preferences)

Disney’s Hollywood Studios

Column A (Choose ONE option)

Column B (Choose TWO options)

All of our Epcot and Disney’s Hollywood Studios touring plans will be updated to remove Legacy FASTPASS information. In the updated versions, we’ll provide suggestions for which FastPass+ attractions to prioritize. Legacy FASTPASS functionality has been removed starting on the aforementioned dates in our free computer-optimized Disney World touring plans software.

Full in park testing for all guests has been taking place at Disney’s Animal Kingdom since December 18 and at the Magic Kingdom since January 14.

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Posted on January 17, 2014

37 Responses to “FastPass+ Coming For All Guests at Disney’s Hollywood Studios and Epcot”

  • When will the Lines app be updated for these changes? I’ll be at Disney World for the first time next week (arriving on the 23rd!).

  • Rock N Roller Coaster OR Toy Story Mania? My hubby and oldest son aren’t going to be too happy about that. :)

    • I HATE the idea of tiered FP+. Hopefully they will continue to tweak this and by the time we make our next trip things will be running more smoothly. I’m kind of glad we don’t have a trip while this is being rolled out.

    • Neula,

      The simple solution to this is to get a FP+ for either Rock N Roller Coaster or Toy Stroy Mania, then head to the other first thing when you arrive (hopefully at rope drop). With legacy FP there was always a mad dash for the FP kiosks, now it will just be for the standby lines instead.

      The same logic holds true with Epcot: FP+ for either Soarin or Test Track, then hit the other at rope drop.

      The other ‘Column A’ attracions can be easily done without FP+.

      • Another option if your son is old enough is to get FP+ for Toy Story Mania and then use the single rider line for RRC. My niece and I did this last summer and were only separated once we boarded the coaster. The standby line was 60+ minutes and we were on in less than 20 using the single rider line.

        Hope this helps.

      • Rock n roller coaster doesn’t need a FP. Do the single rider.
        Or ask for a child swap if there’s 2 adults in the party. It may work if the taller child can appear to be too young to be unsupervised.

        Or you could just wait in line.

        That’s sort of what Disney is going for. I’m not sure why. But basically, Disney is saying to everyone: WAIT IN MORE LINES!!

        The only way around: Low crowd levels and a good touring plan.

  • Where can I find list of group a and group b FP+ attractions for mk and ak?

    • Russ…both Disney’s Animal Kingdom and the Magic Kingdom are not participating in tiered attractions, so you will be able to choose (currently) from any of the attractions that have FastPass+ at those two parks.

  • On one hand, it looks like this is getting worst by the minute.

    BUT

    I have first hand confirmation that they have already extended to 4 fp+ a day and that there are kiosks everywhere in the park (almost at any ride entrance) to get more fast passes

    This guy just came back from a 10 day WDW holiday and has no reason to lie, I don’t get why noone else knows this

    • I don’t know where the 4 FP+ a day is coming from, I’m heading there tomorrow and online it will only let me select 3 per day.

    • I have not heard this from anyone and am not able to make 4 fastpass pluses for my trip starting Saturday. Since no one else AT ALL is reporting this, I would not trust this at all. Maybe this guy wants attention?

  • What if you are staying off site but have Magic Bands linked to non expiring tickets from a previous on-site stay?

  • Just wanted to point out, I think you’re missing a couple attractions. Maelstrom shows up for me as an option for the first tier in EPCOT for my trip in a week and a half. I also see Voyage of the Little Mermaid and The American Idol Experience in the second tier for DHS. Not sure if they’re planning on getting rid of those or what, but I thought I’d mention it.

    I’m looking forward to trying this out, even though I know a lot of other people aren’t! I think it’ll help that it’s not a very busy time of year.

  • As a day guest, do you have any ability to choose time periods for day of selections OR do you just choose three and you get what you get (and you don’t get upset)? Also, with regard to park hopping, let’s say you would rather choose options at the second park you are going to, can you wait to make selections at the second park so long as you make none at the first? Would you even advise that method? Going on 23rd!!

    • As an add on question, if you are hopping can you make reservations for the 2nd park while you are at the first park? For example, I’m at Epcot in the morning but want FP+ for Toy Story Midway Mania (and 2 other DHS attractions) for the evening. Will I be able to do this from an Epcot kiosk? I guess time will tell.

    • You can choose time periods. And you can make them at the second park as long as you’ve not chosen any at the first park. That’s actually a decent strategy – use FPP on the park you’re going to hop to.

  • Not happy at all about the tiered system at Epcot & HS. I could just about get away with this when it was announced for AK and MK – but tiered!!!! I’m so hoping this changes before our trip in July, thankfully our trip is 14 days so we should be able to do all the headliners, but its going to take some organising and takes away some of the spontaneity (or however you spell it!).

  • Any reliable information as to if off-site guests are eventually going to be able to use my disney experience to choose fast pass plus themselves day of ? Or change the Fast pass plus themselves from the app that day while in the park?

    • I have seen it reported that once FP+ is fully rolled out offsite guest will have access to using the app to schedule FP+. Sounded like it would still be ‘day of’ only, but they were not sure.

  • Thanks as always for the timely information…we are going in February and staying at the Dolphin, so “off-site.” What is your suggestion re touring plans for offsite guests since we can’t do the FP+ until we arrive at the park?

    • Stephanie, have you considered booking a one night stay at a Disney resort before your Dolphin stay? May not work but it would allow you to use magical express from the airport to Disney; get a magic band and be able to book in advance. They have been good about moving our luggage from Disney resorts to Swan in past. Someone else may be able to confirm if then your window for picking FP+ may be open for your whole stay but I thought I remembered seeing that…

      • Thanks Christine, unfortunately can’t do it this time as it is all part of a flight/hotel package, and we would have to be there to check in in person, I think. I am going to make the touring plans and then just be prepared to change them on the fly depending on what FP+’s we get that morning. We are already looking at the portable chargers mentioned below…:-)

        If only I had known then what I know now…

  • Has anyone from Touring Plans noticed a change in the standby lines? Hypothetically, there are fewer people with fast passes, right? So does that make the standby lines faster?

  • Thanks for keeping your readers updated on these FP+ developments. I’ll be at WDW later this month, so I really appreciate having the latest info!

    Every article on FP+ has elicited a slew of commenters who are skeptical of and even angry about FP+ and the tiered groupings of attractions. I must be in a small minority; so far, I don’t really have a problem with FP+’s aims and methods. Granted, I haven’t been to the parks since they started rolling it out. But we’re really glad that we’ve been able to schedule Test Track ahead of time; that means that at rope drop, we won’t have to make a mad dash to Soarin’s FP machine and then another mad dash over to Test Track. At Hollywood Studios, we’re glad to already have our FP scheduled for Toy Story Mania. It looks to me that FP+ is going to make our touring a little less harried.

    Two things though. One, maybe other people have a very different approach to the parks than I do! And two, it seems to me that every time Disney changes something, there are people who are dismayed by it. I remember the humorously-organized and yet also heartfelt protests against the closure of Mr. Toad in MK. I remember the howls of dismay at the introduction of the McDonald’s fry carts in the parks. It seems like change comes along and people don’t like it; some will even say now they’re going to visit Universal instead; but after awhile, we get used to it. When they change, we adapt. It will still be possible to have a great time, and keeping an open mind here, maybe in some ways it will be better.

    • I think these are the issues most people are annoyed about.
      1) you cannot get more than three fast pass + good for the guest that wants to get there at 11 but not really for the guest that wants to show up at nine or even earlier
      2) if they’re empty timeslots you still can’t get anymore
      3) if you want to Parkhop you have to choose one park or the other for your fast pass plus.
      4). I have a feeling this is designed to force people more into stores and restaurants why you ask? Who wants to wait in a 90 minute standby line or even a 60 minute standby line people don’t so they rather browse the shops. Disney is betting that this will lead to more money being spent- theoretically adding capacity to a park without really adding capacity and leading to more money overall for the company.

      Overall I see this as a negative

      • Will, to your point 1, this is probably where my perspective is different because I was never in the habit of having multiple FPs. I’m a rope-drop person all the way and I always found that I was able to ride the headliners without much problem in the first couple of hours of park operation, and then maybe pull one or two FPs for later in the day.

        I actually feel that FP+ is better for park hopping because you don’t have to choose which park’s headliner ride you’re more interested in; you can hit one park’s big rides at rope drop and schedule a FP for the other park. That’s what we’ll be doing later this month with AK and HS — AK at rope drop, no FPs; hop to HS later in the day and hit TSM with our scheduled FP.

        I agree that Disney wouldn’t have implemented this change with there being no hope of it offering a return on their investment; they are a business, after all, and I don’t begrudge them that. I think it’s possible that they’ll see more revenue from food and souvenir purchases, but I also think that they’re trying to address the negative word-of-mouth on waits in line and people’s inability to experience major attractions. They enhanced the queue experience on several rides (Haunted Mansion, Dumbo, etc.) for this same reason.

        • We will have to disagree then. I used the fast pass system rather well and was able to hold multiple fast passes. I believe if you want to ride space Mountain three times but don’t want to write Dumbo or it’s a small world you should be able to an prior to this I was able to do that now I will have to wait in line a signing ant amt of time.

          that being said I think the fast pass plus system is based on false advertising. You never needed a fast pass for haunted or it’s a small world except maybe at the most super busy time of year. That being said the reason they added fast pass plus to all these attractions that did not need it is they needed fast pass plus capacity.

          I agree they need to work on the negative word-of-mouth about wait of line but the way to do that appropriately is add more attractions.

          I think the my magic or my Disney experience should recognize when you Parkhop and show you what’s available so if you used your three fast passes but say between 11 and 1 and it’s now 430 and you’re in a new park you should see what’s available but it doesn’t sound like they’re doing that

          • It sounds like for people who tend not to want to ride one ride more than, say, twice, and who visit a broad range of the rides (like me, because I tour with kids — one who doesn’t particularly like thrill rides) — the new FP+ will work fine. And for people who want to ride the headliner rides multiple times, FP+ will not work as well.

            It sounds that possibly part of the idea behind FP+ is to spread the available “spots” on headliner rides to more people — so one person will find it harder to ride multiple times in one day, but that will free up more opportunities for others to ride. We’ll see how it plays out. I take Disney at their word when they call this a test phase. I think they’re watching it very closely.

        • Wouldn’t it be funny if they set up a way to sell merchandise or food to people in these longer lines?

    • We visited in October and had a great experience with the FP+. I agree that the limit of 3 and one park per day is something I’d like to see adjusted, but overall, it was great to be able to stay together without needing to send a runner and to make changes with our My Disney Experience app on our phone. One thing I would advise is to carry a portable charger for your phone with you. Having the app constantly running ran our phones down by 5 or so each day, so with a portable charger you can just plug in and charge up while walking/riding in the park.

    • This is how we feel as well. I think the loudest people just like to rebel against change. No matter what it is. If everyone was allowed 10 FP+s, but it was first come first served and Disney was running out of FP+s, the exact same people would be blasting Disney for not limiting it to three so there was enough for everyone.

      We plan and enjoy planning our Disney trips. We do it the whole year or so beforehand, and it allows us to really get in the mood and have something to look forward to. So for us we love that we now have the oppertunity to schedule our fast passes and dont have to split up and walk all criss cross over the park to get them and use them. What a waste of time that was.

      The only people I see with a legit complaint is anyone who would honestly, show up day of, with no plan. But I would argue that the ability to do this ended a long time ago. We did this in 2005, and missed a ton because of it. In 2008 or later we planned and acomplished everything we wanted. Between ADRs, fastpass original, and the crowd levels at the park growing every year, I would say if you wanted to accomplish a decent amount of rides, you’ve needed a plan for the last decade. Now if you wanted to just go and be spontanious, and ride whatever and dont care what you missed… You could do that before FP+ and can still do it now. Just dont be jeolous that those of us who plan accomplish twice as much.

      • i agree the app is good, no runners is great. but i think 3 is too low- maybe 5 is more realistic. But the problem is the guarantee of 3 per guest per day.

        I wonder what the number of old FP per person was. Now thats not really the same, but I still wonder- its prob low (@ 3) since some people go to the park late and others knew that at the 2 hour mark send a runner somewhere.

        What I really object to is the fact that attractions that never needed FP have FP plus. Its false advertising by Disney as far as I am concerned equating headliners with middle of the road attractions that rarely develop a >30 min wait. Educated tourists won’t fall for the trap. But a family of 4 could easily say wow I can reserve its a small world at 3p. That is a waste.

        Now while I complain its false advertising for the consumer, its smart for Disney the Corporation- after all they are in the process of making money (full disclosure: I have some disney stock). And if that same family of 4 has to extend their trip by a few days to see everything due to poor planning- Disney is happy as a clam- more rooms, more food, more souvieners.

  • As an Annual passholder and Florida resident I take many spur of the moment trips and I always park hop, if I want to go tomorrow almost all decent times for anything is gone. In times gone by I never got a time more than an hour and a half from the time I put my ticket in. Now what’s the sense in park hopping. I am not a big fan of this program.