by Pixie Dusted Diva
If this is your first trip to Walt Disney World you are probably wondering what this FastPass+ is you keep hearing about. If this isn’t your first trip, but you haven’t been in a while, you may remember Disney’s old Fast Pass system where you raced into the park and inserted your park ticket into a machine to obtain a “reservation” for your favorite rides, which you would come back later at a certain time to ride. However things have now changed completely! I will explain the new Fastpass+ system to you along with some tips on how to make FastPass+ reservations in advance and while at Walt Disney World. Soarin’ Diva reminds us of what those old Fast Passes looked like in the picture on the left. You can read just how necessary Soarin’ Diva thinks FastPass+ are here.
The FastPass+ system allow you to reserve your Fast Passes in advance for rides, character meet and greets, parades and even firework shows. However, you must have a valid ticket linked to your My Disney Experience account.
The first thing you will want to do is set up that My Disney Experience account and link your park tickets. You must have valid theme park tickets linked to your account to make FastPass+ reservations.
One of the benefits of staying on property at a Walt Disney resort is the ability to book all your FastPass+ selections at 60 days prior to check in. If you do not have a Walt Disney resort reservation you will only be able to book 30 days in advance. You will be able to book 3 FastPass+ reservations for each day you have a park ticket. For example, if your vacation is 8 days, but you only have a 6 day park ticket, you will need to decide ahead of time which six days you will visit the parks, as you will only be able to make six days’ worth of FastPass+ reservations. When you are booking your FastPass+ selections at 60 days you will be able to make the selections for your length of stay. If you are making selections at the 30 day mark, you will have to make each day separately and wait until the next day to make the next day’s worth of passes.
Fastpass+ reservations can be made on the computer or the My Disney Experience app. Either way you will choose the make the passes you will go to the FastPass+ option when logged into My Disney Experience. As of April 10, 2016 the steps and process has changed. You no longer are given three options to choose from in set time frames. You no longer have to choose three fast passes at once either. The new process is actually easier and allows for more flexibility. I personally like to make my initial FastPass+ selections on a computer as I find it is easier to make changes for the exact times I want the reservations. Of course, while I am at Walt Disney World and making changes I always use the My Disney Experience (MDE) app or the in park kiosk. You also are now able to make your fourth FastPass+ selection on the MDE app or the park kiosk.
- You will be given the option to choose new FastPass+ experiences or modify your existing FastPass+ selections. Since we are walking through the steps of making new selections we will want to choose make new FastPass+ experiences.
- You will then select the guests you are planning the FastPass+ for. You will only be able to choose guests who have a valid ticket linked. Guests who are 3 and under will be listed, but you do not have to make individual FastPass+ selections for them. You will check off each member of your party.
- Next, you will choose the date and park you are making your FastPass+ reservations for. Typically I like to start
with the hardest reservations to get first. Those might include things like the Seven Dwarves Mine Train at Magic Kingdom or the Frozen Ever After ride at Epcot. Therefore, I would pick my last day I am at either of those parks and do those FastPass+ reservations first.
Diva Tip: By choosing the last day, less people have had an opportunity to make FastPass+ for that day, giving you better odds at getting what you want.
- On the next screen you will see the list of available FastPass+ reservations and times available. You will see the option to narrow down your search by Morning, Afternoon or Evening along with a specific time i.e. 9:00 a.m. 9:30 a.m. etc. Each attraction will only show three times, however if you click on the name of the attraction you will see more times and details. It will also give you more information such as the type of ride, thrill ride, big drops, loud, age range which is recommended for, and how tall you must be to ride.
- If there is not availability you will see a note which states that (wording is different on the computer or the app), FastPass+ Distribution Has Ended for Selected Day. This means you will not be able to select that attraction for a FastPass+ selection. You will also see a note if an attraction is closed for refurbishment.
- NOTE: Disney still requires your first three FastPass+ selections to be in the same theme park. You will be able to make your fourth FastPass+ selection for a different park.
- FastPass+ time frames are for one hour. If you choose 10:30 a.m. for your reservation, you will be reserving 10:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. You will not be able to make another FastPass+ until 11:30 a.m.
DIVA TIP: Keeping in mind the location of attractions when making FastPass+ reservations. You are able to view the location of the rides on the My Disney Experience app. You will also want to keep in mind your dining reservations and travel time when making FastPass+ reservations.
Depending on what works for your family and your touring plan you may want to book your FastPass+ for the morning, the afternoon or the evening. If your family likes to get up early and arrive at the parks for rope drop you may want to make mid-morning FastPass+ reservations as many of the rides do not have long waits in the early morning.
After you have used the three pre-planned FastPass+ reservations you can visit an in park kiosk to make a fourth FastPass+ reservation or use the My Disney Experience app. The kiosk will show you what is available for the park you are in at the time. Once you use the fourth FastPass+ reservation you may return for a fifth selection and repeat the process for as long as the park is open and there is availability. All members of your party must use their FastPass+ selections in order to book another FastPass+ at the kiosk. If a member of your party does not use their FastPass+ you must wait for the time frame of that FastPass+ to expire before you can make additional FastPass+ reservations. Should you decide to park hop, you are able to make a fourth FastPass+ at the in park kiosk in the second park you have visited for the day.
You may also be wondering if you should use your FastPass+ selections for parades or shows. Darlin’ Diva discusses that here.
Diva Tip: A benefit to staying on property is booking your entire stay at 60 days prior to check in. Here at Tips from the Disney Diva we recommend using Patricia from All for Dreams Travel for all your travel needs. To contact Patricia please click here for more information.