One-hour FASTPASS return time window now enforced at Walt Disney World, leading to new ride reservation system

in Disney, Disney's Animal Kingdom, Disney's Hollywood Studios, Epcot, Magic Kingdom, Theme Parks, Walt Disney World


Today Walt Disney World theme parks have begun actively enforcing a rule that was often bent since the debut of the FASTPASS system in 1999. Return times listed on FASTPASS tickets are now strictly enforced, no longer allowing theme park guests to use a FASTPASS at their leisure.

Guests obtain free FASTPASS tickets by inserting theme park tickets into FASTPASS machines, in return getting a one-hour time window that allows them to bypass the normal standby lines of many popular Disney attractions, rides, and shows – essentially a ride reservation. But while the beginning of that window was always strictly adhered to, not allowing guests to use a FASTPASS beforehand, the ending time was almost always overlooked, giving guests the opportunity to return at their convenience any time after the FASTPASS becomes valid.

But as of today, Walt Disney World is now enforcing both the beginning and end times, allowing guests holding a FASTPASS to only return during the one-hour window stated on the FASTPASS slip. It may sound like an undesirable change that will further limit flexibility in a busy theme park schedule, but it’s not actually a new rule. Though the return time window has often been ignored, the basis of the FASTPASS system lies within this return window. It’s simply now Walt Disney World’s decision to finally start enforcing the rule that’s been there since the beginning. And though it will affect regulars who know how to use the FASTPASS leniency to their advantage, most Walt Disney World guests already do return during the designated time window and likely won’t notice much of a difference.

There will always be, of course, exceptions to the rule. If an attraction becomes temporarily closed or guests are somehow otherwise prevented from visiting an attraction due to circumstances out of their control, Cast Members stationed at FASTPASS return areas will surely continue Disney’s long-standing tradition of doing whatever they can to make guests happy. But it does mean guests will need to pay closer attention to posted return times when grabbing a FASTPASS in the first place, as to not overlap times with dining reservations, parades, or anything else that might draw attention away from the desired attraction.

To make the change clear to theme park regulars who are used to disregarding the second time printed on a FASTPASS, Disney has added signs to FASTPASS machines property-wide, like this one:

The daily time and information guide that accompanies theme park maps also has added a note that reads:

“To ensure you have the best experience possible, please remember to return to FASTPASS attractions within your return time window (printed on FASTPASS tickets).”

FASTPASS tickets also now include the phrase, “Not able to accommodate late arrivals.”

Walt Disney World is certainly making it clear to all visitors that the former lax treatment of FASTPASS rules is no longer available and that all guests will need to strictly adhere to the FASTPASS rules. But why the sudden change of attitude?

Just over a year ago, in February 2011 at a Disney investors conference, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts chairman Tom Staggs confirmed Disney is working on a system from which those planning a trip to Walt Disney World will be able to make ride reservations from outside the parks, even from home before the trip begins.

Staggs said, “…we are currently developing an innovative system that will, in essence, create a version of FASTPASS for their entire Disney vacations. Now we define the guest experience as beginning from the time a potential guest sits down at a computer or picks up a phone to make a reservation. […] They’ll be able to create a personalized itinerary that gives them the exact Disney vacation they want.”

Though that revelation was met with mixed reactions from Disney theme park fans, it’s likely that the new FASTPASS rule enforcement is directly related to the yet-to-be-revealed ride reservation system, rumored to be dubbed “X-Pass” or “xPass” (or a variety of other names). With Disney planning to add a more advanced ride reservation ability, the current FASTPASS system must be completely under their control, knowing exactly when and how many guests will be returning, expecting to “skip” the line.

The change is likely to cause some frustration among those who have grown used to the convenience of using a FASTPASS any time later in the day, but ultimately just as FASTPASS was a revolutionary addition to the parks in the late ’90s, the new “xPass” system (or whatever it might be called) is being designed to revolutionize, enhance, and minimize the act of mindlessly waiting in line, allowing for more entertainment and enjoyment out of a Disney theme park visit.


  1. I think this is a big mistake for Disney. I am willing to bet they will see longer fastpass lines and less use. If you get a fastpass for Tower of Terror and go over to Toy Story, you will never make it back in time. Even if it is two hours later!! My guess is this won’t last long.

    1. Mitch W

      Makes perfect sense and will work just fine.

      We are hard core Disney World addicts and visit many, many times a year. In the past 7 years we have almost never used or tried to use our Fast Passes after the window has expired, never need to. The time windows are determined by the number of Fast passes handed out so there is almost always plenty of time between windows, besides you have to wait a certain amount of time after you get a Fast pass in order to get another. You will almost always have enough time between passes so not only will this work but it will allow Disney to offer other alternaitves to waiting in lines.

    2. Kate N.

      As a frequent Disney visitor, I think this is pure genius! My family is a group of 23 and this would make it a 1000000 times easier for all of us to be able to ride the typical long line rides i.e ToyStory Mania,Soarin, etc.. and not have to lose time standing in a line. Bring on the XPass!

    3. Mike

      I hate this new rule, and it has negatively effected our trip this year so much we are canceling next year’s annual trip. We don’t go all the time, and now on this trip we only average two big rides per day, because the fast pass schedule doesn’t line up with our family’s schedule. You can see that Disney gives a lot of people “anytime” passes if you pay attention to the fast pass lines. It seems the average customer just isn’t valued anymore at Disneyland.

    4. Zman-annual member

      For a company so focused on the experience, this new rule is sure to NOT delight! I have been in Disney Parks 45 days this year and today my family of 5 was turned away from Goofy’s coaster. I agree with Mike, this is a bad move for Disney. I was mad enough to leave right then. Saddened that the Disney magic of the past may be slipping away. Disney felt like the state fair vs the “magic kingdom” today. Glad my kids were able to experience Walt’s original dream. Times, they are a changing… My prediction, Tom better change this back quick or watch his stock price start slipping!

      1. Zman-annual member

        One more quick point, the cast members are being ask to serve as the enforcement agency. This changes their role from creating lasting delightful experiences to surly and sorry bout your luck attitude. Yet again, state fair? Bummer. Walt would be sick!

    5. Greg White

      I hadn’t memorized the exact look of the FastPass passes, its fine-print messages, or what little signs were up at the distribution stations. I did know how they have been handling them for over 10 years.

      I thought it a bit lame that they did not make the policy change crystal clear, as the close time had never been enforced as long as I can remember (I’ve been to DLand many times, and spent a lot of dough there learning how to work it). (I might make them “pay” by doing a different vacation for the next couple of years.)

      The message should have been something like: “FastPass return time window is strictly enforced as of ‘__’.”

      The strict window makes planning difficult, as you could end up walking a long way to get a FastPass attraction with no clear idea of what the return time will be when you get there. To aid planning, a cell phone app with a FastPass ticker would be nice.

      Another way to help the planning aspect would be if there were two 1-hour windows separated in time by at least a few hours. Obviously the second window would disappear as the day goes on. (New FP’s would still be available at the beginning of the first window.)

      The change simply makes planning a full experience more difficult. I don’t know about other people, but I usually have some leftover FP’s at the end of every day.

  2. How about a 2 hour window if they are going to enforce the time?

  3. Jeff Lynch

    I get really confused by all this Fastpass stuff. I have never used it when I go the parks because it’s too complicated for me to understand. If I was able to plan a vacation and what time I would ride all the rides, I would plan it like this: Haunted Mansion, Space Mountain, Jungle Cruise, other stuff, then Haunted Mansion and Space Mountain again. And then I would have lunch and then wander around a bit and see things and people watch. And maybe have a Dole Pineapple Whip. And then I’d want to go on Haunted Mansion and Space Mountain again. And then I would wander around a little more and then go on more rides again.

  4. Lonna E

    Well, I’m happy that we at least have the technology of Mobile Magic to prevent us from walking all the way from one side of the park to the other only to find that the fast pass return time is right when we have an ADR. I’m still not happy about this change, but we will see. I have a feeling a lot of FP tickets will get tossed in the trash at the end of the day because people couldn’t get back to the attraction in time.

  5. Tim M

    Finally Disney is enforcing there own rules! Now Disney just needs to find a way to fix the Brazilian tour group infestation and we would be all good.

    1. Elisa

      LOL, do they bother??

    2. Carey


  6. SWB

    Glad to hear Disney is finally following their own Fastpass rules. People who picked up their fastpasses know what time says on the ticket to be back for the ride and choose to ignore it and figure they should be able to skip the line whenever they decide to come back to it. Makes for longer fastpass lines and longer waits on the ride for everybody. Enforcing the rule will make wait times shorter for both lines.

    1. Greg White

      “Makes for longer fastpass lines and longer waits on the ride for everybody.”

      What evidence do you have for this? I suspect people will just change their strategy in the long run.

      If the lines get shorter, it may as well be that park attendance is down because “regulars” don’t like it.

  7. Toni Smith

    Congrats on being quoted in the article. Keep up the great work! Here’s the link

  8. steve c

    Mike is absoluty correct. Get a fast pass for soarin, then figure you’ll get a bite to eat. that the dreded food service at WDW. now you’ve missed your window. this stinks.

  9. Jared W

    Is this going to be enforced at Disneyland as well? This article only talks specifically about WDW…as a West Coaster who is a regular to Disneyland I’m hoping they wont! Thanks! :)

    1. Ricky Brigante

      Not at this time. Some outlets are misreporting that Disneyland has begun enforcing it as well, which isn’t true (yet).

    2. Sterling

      Was just as Disneyland and yes it is strictly enforced now!

  10. Danielle

    This is awful!!!! Things come up!! You get wrapped with the Disney magic, you get distracted by the scent of cinnamon rolls from the bakery on main street, or you see Aladdin and your children want to stand in line for an autograph. Part of the Disney experience is the spontaneity and discovery of the magic that we all love so dearly. Th last thing I need on vacation is rigidity and more scheduling. Big mistake Disney!!

    1. Tim

      I agree with you. I tell everyone to NOT plan what they will do when they go to Disneyworld. I tell them they will never see it all so relax.

      This must be a young persons idea who is only looking for rides and not enjoying the experience.

      ALSO, at almost $100 dollars a day????????????????? and the cost of the dinning plan keeps going up – there will be fewer visitors.

    2. Stephanie

      I completely agree! I think this is a horrible idea! I too, don’t want to have to schedule all my rides too! It’s hard enough to get dining ressies at the time of year I go! When I get my FP’s I have every intention of trying to go in the hour window but things do come up on the way! Who wants to race to the other side of the park to be 10 min. over your time and be turned away! Then I have wasted my FP and my time! As much as I try to make them all coincide, they just don’t! I think this will make my trip a little less magical!

    3. Mac

      Just a reminder, you don’t have to use fast passes. There’s a little thing called the stand-by line. Have fun.

      1. Greg White

        Thanks for the snarky comment, Mac, you dick. *Everyone* does use stand-by lines, you tool.

  11. Nick G

    Well, so much for enjoying Disney at a leisurely pace. Now it will be RUSH, RUSH, RUSH!!! GOODBYE Flexibility!! I try to get back within my Fast Pass window, but sometimes a child has to go to the bathroom, or simply just needs to sit down. Also, if my child wants to stop, pin trade, grab a drink or snack, buy a toy, or simply watch a character walk by – now I cannot let them simply enjoy Disney at their own pace. I need to RUSH RUSH RUSH them back to the ride in order to use the Fast Pass within the limited return window. No walking to the other side of the park because there is NO WAY you will get back in time to use the Fast Pass. How LIMITING!! Say good bye to impulse purchases Disney – simply no time to do so now. Shame on you Disney!!

    1. Tony G

      Seriously? FastPasses are already a “privilege” over standing in the regular line. How about suck it up and go by the rules. If your kid cant make it back in time, then wait in line with the rest of the people. People these days feel far too entitled. Disney owes you nothing in regard to FastPass, so use it their way, or dont…

      1. mindi

        WOW…what an angry reply, shame on YOU Tony! Nick, I completely agree! Most people did return within the time constraints on the ticket, however, knowing that you were allowed the flexibility to return a little later had a very small impact on the wait time. It’s Disneyworld people…no reason to be quite so angry!

        1. GENIE

          I agree with Tony G….. everyone expects something – entitlement…grab a fast pass and come back when it says…follow the rules and quit complaining. It is a nice CHOICE you have that allows you to deal with standing in were never given the flexibility to return a little later.(that’s is the problem-now you know why Disney is enforcing the rules) You were to return within a time frame. Tony’s reply wasn’t angry just his opinion. Guess it’s okay to give yours though!

          1. Cindie

            I agree with Tony~ We are always back in time for our fastpass time. We are rule follower’s and r tired of all the people that cheat the system. We have been to Disneyworld many times. I really do not want to go again because of our bad experiences with the 100’s of scooters. I was sick & waiting in line for a bus w/my family. There were 3 scooters that arrived AFTER us. They got on the bus WITH their many family members! We didn’t make it on the bus because of this. I was so sick by the time I got on the bus I was afraid I would be sick on people in the bus we got on. (I have Cyclic Vomiting Syndrome). You can’t see my disability & I don’t know when it’s going to happen. Why can’t the other family members wait in the bus line like everyone else? Just have the scooter person & 1 family/friend go with on the bus?

          2. disgustipated

            I agree with Cindie: It’s sad the way people misuse scooters. Maybe if they got OFF the scooter, the wouldn’t be so fat and out of breath. They should not get handicapped status just because they choose an unhealthy lifestyle.

      2. Ces

        no they will just lose my premium pass- i will spend it on Dodgers Tickets instead.– gone are riding 13-15 rides aday- not worth it.

      3. Mac

        Thank you, Tony! Someone else gets it! No one is forcing people to take fastpasses! So, people should quit complaining and start being thankful for the FREE service!

      4. Greg White

        tony g> “People these days feel far too entitled.”

        What a bizarre comment. I don’t think Tony knows what the word “entitlement” means. There is no “entitlement” other than what DLand promises in exchange for money.

        DLand *changed* the policy, and dislocated expectations of “regulars,” who had been exchanging money for the promises of DLand. Okay, so people now know they have changed the policy.

        tony g> “Disney owes you nothing in regard to FastPass, so use it their way, or dont…”

        Actually, you are wrong. They do “owe” the promise of the FastPass. The set up expectations, then spuriously changed them.

        And “don’t use it their way” is the point. A lot of people may not like it. They are voicing their opinions as trading partners with DLand (money for amusement/entertainment). “Don’t use it their way” may mean spending earmarked entertainment dollars at somewhere else than DLand. So that is the only part you got partially right, although I don’t think you understand what you said.

        If DLand wants to risk losing regulars, that is their business, of course. It is their property.

    2. SuperJoe

      As a regular visitor (DVC member) I think the enforcement of the times is no problem and makes sense. However, this new idea of having to lock in times weeks/months out is kind of crazy. The beauty of enjoying the whole experience is not having to rush. Its already hard enough when you know how to work the parks but this system will really put undue pressure on guests to meet the reservations times. Its already a pain in the rear to remember the 180 day mark to make dining reservations. I bet this will be the same thing. God forbid you miss the mark by a few days will you be S.O.L on rides like Toy Story Mania or Soarin for your whole trip. So now, I will not only have to coordinate my park schedule with my dining reservations, I will have to add in ride reservations to ensure my kids get to do the good ones. I am a pretty organized Disney visitor, but the more we go, the more I appreciate the availability of keeping things fluid. I just think this propessed change will make it a bit more stressful. I know I can wait in lines but thats the beauty of the Fast Pass. Just my thoughts….

  12. Nick G

    Seriously, I am thinking why would I spend all this money to simply stand in lines – the Fast Pass lines will be ridiculous now!! Ugh!! Well, I guess this is the push I needed to begin to look at alternate vacations…

  13. Nick G

    And, on the subject of pre-booking rides from home… Unless you can pre-book every single ride in the park, it simply will be as frustrating as limiting the Fast Pass return window. (Hello Atlantis, Beaches, and other fabulous alternate vacation options!! You are about to get my vacation dollars!!)

  14. I wish Disney would do 3 things. 1. keep fastpass flexibility its not broken, don’t change it. 2. Add official modern technology to make standby information readily available. I used an app that let me know the wait times at all the parks. 3. Build plenty of neighborhood style playgrounds throughout all of their parks. A bonus would be adding a playground at the airport too.

  15. Mike

    Very poor, end of a walk to other side of park

  16. Suzanne

    I disagree with the enforcement of the strict One-Hour rule…they should continue to be lenient with the time you have to use it. The parks are enormous, the waits are outrageous and I think it is unreasonable to think parks guests can return within a hour of the FastPass Time. I was there in Nov and we utilized the FastPass to the maximum and it worked out just fine! I do think that people should still be restricted to the time before the pass is valid BUT give us more time to use after that! Thats just my 2-cents.

  17. Tim

    What about people that just get a Fast Pass and find out that it is the same time as there Dinning reservations or the same time that a show is going on such as Indiana Jones or they are pushing a wheel chaired person and cannot get bact to the attraction in time or their child is taking a nap either in a stroller or if they had to go back to the room.

    They already have a WAIT time until you can get a new pass. Since they want to enforce the time, will a person be able to get another fast pass SOONER?

    1. George

      That is why Dinsey said they would handle it situation to situation when it came to things like this. Dinsey has been and always will be kind to their guest.

  18. Tim

    What happens when I have dinner reservations (I make them 180 days out) for a place at Epcot for 7:00 PM and on that day you are at Disney Studio and you get your FAST PASS at 10:00 in the morning for Toy Story (they are usually gone by 11:00 and it is for 7:00?

    Do I have to cancel my dinner reservation to use my FAST PASS with my gradkids? How is that cost effective for the place I was going to dine?

  19. John

    What part of “Enter any time between 5:40 and 6:40” don’t you understand?

    1. Greg White

      The close time was never enforced. This set up expectations for experienced DLand’ers. Then the policy was spuriously changed. That means people make plans and get surprised. That is frustrating to people.

      It is sort like a right-of-way in law. If you allow an informal right-of-way across your property for long enough, then it actually becomes a legal right-of-way for these other users. (It can’t be taken away.) Basically, “you’ve set an expectation of allowance by failing to prohibit passage on your property.” DLand had set expectation of open passage after the close time, no matter what the “title/deed” said.

      People will adjust, for sure. But it may mean some loss of business for DLand of its regulars. They spend a lot of money there, and if they can’t work their experience to their advantage, they may make other entertainment choices with their money.

  20. Tara

    I am REALLY pleased to see this. We come from the UK and have visited 7 times. I have NEVER used a fastpass outside of the hour slot. Firstly, I didn’t realise you could until I heard people talk about it. Secondly, As ‘John’ has put – what part of between 5.40 and 6.40 is there not to get? If I had a dinner reservation at 6pm, I wouldn’t dream of turning up at 8pm! – the same goes for fastpass. It’s all about respecting the rules. I have never found a problem with returning in the times specified. I hope it works. I feel real sorry for the cast members as there’s always going to be someone who thinks the rules should be different for them and create a fuss when they return after their timeslot. Anyway, well done disney. Anyone who complains should remember – at least Disney don’t charge like Universal. I think the Disney system is SO much better!

  21. Dsny1Grl

    I don’t mind the enforcement of the return window. I’d imagine they will be flexible if the ride you are returning to breaks down and you can’t ride during your original time. The whole purpose was to have control over crowds. If you can return any time after your window that defeats the purpose. Also, I don’t know about there if you, but there have been many times where I’ve seen huge amounts of people show up at one time for return to fast pass and heard cast member say that they were tour groups who all returned together regardless of the fact that their return windows had expired. That’s abuse of the system. As for the reservation system. I can;t say I like it much, but if you really wish to plan your days that much, go for it. Then when you don’t show up because something else came up, it just leaves the rest of us a better opportunity to ride using the sand by line!

  22. Mike

    We experienced the enforcement of this new policy earlier this week. Only our third trip to Disney, but we previously showed up after the window many times. This allowed for greater flexibility particularly because we have young children. So if we get to Epcot for a rope drop and pick up Soarin’ FP that ends at 2:50 pm…we have a scheduling problem since nap time ends at 2:30 at the resort and we can’t get back until after the window. They do not make accommodations for that. You just cannot have the magic.

    Same thing with food. When my reservation at Cinderella’s table is locked in six months in advance, and I get my FP which ends after I get out of the castle, I only get half the magic. I can’t get another FP and I can’ cancel the pricey castle visit. It’s just sorry kid, no Peter Pan.

    The worst thing about out experience this week was that we didn’t know about the change. The signs are not conspicuous and the note on the FP is nebulous. The cast member who refused us entry because our FP had expired asked no questions and would hear no explanations; fortunately our Disney experience didn’t hinge only on our son finally being tall enough to ride Space Mountain. This cast member had not been provided the tools to turn her grumpy troll refusal into magic; if they plan to stick with this, they need to refuse better and more professionally.

    As for some other comments, Folks who are saying the time should be static are apparently not scheduling much else which could interfere with FP distribution.

    1. Mark

      Mike, “Folks who are saying the time should be static” are people who have waited in a stand-by line for 2 to 4 hours at a popular ride while hundreds of fast-passers enter non-stop (Soarin’ and Splash Mountain in particular) clearly outside of their window. I’ve hoped for a few years now that Disney would begin enforcing the expiration. Those who explain (complain) they can’t fulfill both a Fast Pass and a Meal reservation should learn that double-booking is not an excuse to inconvenience everyone else in line.

      As for the 2:30 nap time and 2:50 fast-pas time. What? Did you decide to set the nap time AFTER you picked up the fast pass? Dude, just wait at the Fast-Pass line an extra 5 minutes, and you’ll get that coveted 2:30 to 3:30 pm window you need. Smile and let others get in front of you–they’ll not mind.

      Everyone who complains “It’s not fair to ME or my kids!” should begin teaching their children by a mature example that they need to learn to treat OTHERS as fairly as they want to be treated themselves.

      1. Mike

        Mark, one difference is that the FP time is dictated by the machine, while the food reservation was made months before and is paid in advance. Character dining can take some time, especially at the castle. So it is quite unlike double booking because one cannot control the FP window—particularly on a ride like Soarin. You flow with the opening throng to get that FP, and have little choice of times.

        Likewise with the nap. It is at the same time every day, but with travel on either side can be a three hour excursion. I cannot pick my FP time unless I lie in wait at the machine. And if I would do that, it would defeat the purpose of FP: convenience.

        My kids also like meeting characters. If we are 10 minutes from the end of FP window and on our way to the ride, we cannot stop and meet Belle and Beast and honor the FP end time. If those characters are done for the day, too bad.

        I haven’t proclaimed ‘unfair’ but was ‘surprised’. I am unhappy about the change, but we used the FP system so as to not have to wait in 4 hour long lines. I wish you had done the same because you would agree with me now and would have had more time to enjoy Disney then. I also wanted to make it clear the cast member who enforced the new rule on us was rude and not accommodating, and that is not the Disney I know. So they need to retrain on that…

        1. Jerry

          I have the same persoective as Mike above. The FP is a great tool if you use it wisely, but the new enforcement will limit the flxibility that was such a great feature of the old system. When you receive your FP, the redeem time is unpredictable and may be hours later. In the meantime you end up on the far side of the park. It would make no sense to stop what you are doing in Tomorrowland just because you have to rush over to Frontierland to use a FP that is about to expire, especially if the lines in Tomorrowland are not bad at the moment and you are not yet done in that area of the park. It has always made complete sense to me that they did not enforce the back end of the slot limit on the FP for that very reason. The reality is that this will impact some of the most loyal Disney customers more than anyone else, and for most in this group it will be a negative impact. My guess is that the X-Pass will be something you need to pay for. To me the idea of pre-scheduling your rides, parades, meals (naps?) etc. and then having to comply with this predetermined schedule is so far outsdie of what I want in a relaxing vacation that I cannot see myself using that type of system. Why don’t we just order a package of rides and shows off an value menu like at McDonald’s?? I guess I will just have the #3 combo with the fireworks and a paddleboat exit. I can tell you that if faced with having to run back and forth even more and wait in more lines, other parks will begin to look more attractive. Disney should avoid fixing things that are not broken.

  23. Tj

    We are not local but have been averaging a couple of trips per year to WDW. FP had helped a lot in the past.

    Ok, here is our first experience with the new Fastpass system; We got our Fastpass for Tower of Terror, went to dinner in the park and returned two minutes, Yes TWO minutes after the time on the ticket. We were told, “Sorry, you missed your time, you need to go standby.”. They would not budge! So we spend tons of money for overpriced food and get rewarded by missing our FP opportunity.

    Wondering if they will enforce this for the tour operators who walk up and put hundreds of tickets through for FP’s??

    My other pet peeve is handicapped bypass of lines. It is so abused. We have seen one person push the wheelchair on the way into the ride and the person sitting on the way in driving on the way out. It seems like renting a scooter or wheelchair is the new fast pass bypass. We have traveled with handicapped relatives in the past and heard people in line actually bragging about it. I understand and appreciate the accommodations but it is very abused. We went to Busch Gardens Williamsburg last year and they had a much better system for handicapped access. You had to register, got a card and could bypass each line only once and the party size was limited to the person plus four others.

    1. Michele

      The abuse of the handicap issue bugs our family too and then I feel guilty for being bugged by it. But you’re not alone.

    2. Jennifer

      Accessible accommodations are often abused, but putting excessive restrictions on the system hurts those who truly benefit and wouldn’t enjoy Disney otherwise. Restricting each ride to a one-time accommodation doesn’t make sense because often most of the rides in the park aren’t accessible. We ride Peter Pan two or three times because we can’t do Splash Mountain, Space Mountain, POTC, or the train roller coaster. We often wait longer than the regular line for the accessible vehicle to come along and it’s no picnic either transferring a disabled adult to and from ride vehicles. Disney attracts a lot of disabled folk because it is so accommodating, but there isn’t one blanket set of rules that will meet everyone’s needs while preventing abuse. (If you overhear cheaters, turn them in!)

    3. Beth

      One of my family members gets the handicapped pass every time we go to Disney because he has a handicap that you CAN’T SEE. Waiting 2 hours in line for a ride is not an option. The last time I went to Disney, a person in line had the nerve to question us about the validity of the handicapped pass for our group. I politely told her that some people have handicaps you can’t see, but would still like to spend a quality vacation with their families. She shut-up. Please keep this in mind when you see people “abusing” the system.

  24. Mike

    The problem is not FastPass or waiting for a ride. If there were more places to EAT in the parks, people would not mind the waits,etc. The Dining Plan was the worst idea Disney every implemented. Just add places to grab food! I also think planning ride times weeks or months in advance is a huge mistake. I hope they take into account a % of people who will not pre-plan or FastPass–otherwise the rides/attractions will have the same problem the dining sites have. no reservations–no rides, no meals (unless you are out of the parks)–why spend $185 a day to walk around and shop??…

  25. Jim

    Wow! What passion and over what? A ride in an amusement park. What have we degenerated to that this is such a all-consuming problem for so many.

  26. Ottis

    Just returned from DW at the end of March where we were caught by surprise by the FP enforcement. We were there in Nov and it wasn’t enforced. While I understand the reason for the change, this increased scheduling during vacation is overwhelming. I’m glad we are finished with Disney trips (as the kids are older now). I don’t want to deal with this anymore. Much prefer to wander around at a leisurely pace and have at least some flexibility.

  27. SJ

    The lack of end time for the fastpasses, along with some careful planning thanks to some Disney trip planning software meant that my family managed to go on every ride at Disneyland and California Adventures in the 2 days we had in LA during our extended stopover on the way to England from New Zealand. I believe it would have been incredibly disappointing and nowhere near as enjoyable had we not been able to gather fastpasses as we went.

  28. Michele

    Wow! I don’t really know what to say. I agree that FP is a privilege and that the times should be adhered to. For whatever reason, if you can’t make it to that ride during your alotted HOUR, then get in line w/ the masses.

    Now I will agree that we’ve seen blatant abuse of what is practically “line jumping” by families of handicapped people. At the Dumbo ride one time, we witnessed this woman push this elderly woman thru the handicap access and get the chair stuck numerous times, all while holding up any further loading. Once she finally got through in the chair, along with about ten members of her family, she “suddenly” decided she didn’t want to ride. And of course they didn’t make the family members get off. She never had any intention OF riding, but they had intentions of abusing her disability. Shameless!

    And I’m sorry people, but just because it’s vacation to the happiest place on earth DOES NOT mean you shouldn’t have a plan. We’ve been twice and I’ve always made a plan/itinerary. We’ve used Fast Passes on numerous rides and jockeyed waiting in lines, meeting characters, and using the FANTASTIC Dining Plan that Disney offers.

  29. kaaylity

    My family of five had the opportunity to test the new system the second week in May of this year. I really liked it and the way in which the times were scheduled (Disney controls this a bit to keep people from scheduling unrealistically) allowed plenty of time to return within the hour window. We only had one day in MK and going in I was worried that we would not be able to do many of the things we wanted. After receiving four pre-scheduled fast passes for rides of our choice (all on one card for each member of your party which you you swipe at the ride), we were much less rushed, didn’t have to backtrack to get fastpasses and return later, weren’t limited to one fastpass at a time, and had peace of mind that we would not waste time waiting in line for some of our favorites. We did arrive an hour late to one ride due to a delay at lunch (systems were down at the Crystal Palace and we didn’t get in for our 11:35 lunch reservation until 12:30). We were allowed to ride late. Of course, not everyone was using the new system so that may change things somewhat, but it seems to me an idea worth pursuing.

  30. Tiffany

    It think once we all get used to it, having to adhere to the times will improve wait times. Right now Disney issues the passes based on a certain number of people coming in a set 1 hour window. If half those people randomly come at a different time window it messes up the fastpass wait line as well as the standby line. I think a great way to implement the new advanced reservation idea would be rather than having people walk up and be forced to take the 1 hour window offered you could select your one hour window. For example, instead of getting there and getting 4pm-5pm when you have dinner reservations at 4, you could chose a 6:30-7:30 window instead. Or if you get there early and don’t necessarily need or want your fastpass for an early time you could elect to make your fastpass later in the afternoon, leaving the earlier slots for people who really want them. for this to work they would HAVE to enforce the 1-hour window. The question is, do we have to make those reservations 6 months in advance or should they be limited to making them, say, the day you plan to use them.

  31. Jennifer

    I was there in March right after this was implemented and it caused TOTAL CHAOS! The wait in the standby line was ridiculous and constantly held up. One of the many reason we will NOT be renewing our passes next year.

    1. Greg White

      “One of the many reason we will NOT be renewing our passes next year.”

      I don’t think we’ll go back next year either. So the lines will be shorter. LOL!

  32. juan

    Used to go twice a year.. with my hard earned money and two kids… and piled fastpases and baby swaped… now they are changing rules to go give less… it is crowded they have a lot of land why dont they build a clone park.. or more parks… more lands… more rides?????… its all about give less and get more…. we are crowded make bigger lines…. keep then eating shoping… ridind doesnt make more money walking eating shoping does… for some the system had a scape to the trap.. now they cut it. My money was hard to earn to wait in a line.. you alk saints are right i aint going to pay to wait in a line… i take my kids in low season to seaworld aquatica and bush…. you are very right YOU PAY TO MAKE A LINE.. no stockpiling no swaps going elswhere.

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