26 October 2012

31 Days:: Fastpasses

{Insider Info Series}
Welcome to today's topic: FastPasses! Today's post will be a bit shorter, but is great information to have- even more so if the parks might be a bit busier when you visit! We use fastpasses during every visit, regardless of crowd size at the parks, and here's a bit more info about why!

Source: allears.net

How it Works
So FastPasses allow you to wait in line for another ride, or grab a quick bite to eat, and then cut the line at your original ride! Neat, right?? So how does this work? Well, I shall share...
  • head to the ride of your choice that participates in FastPass
  • the ride will have machines that distribute FastPasses and displays the times during which you can return and ride the ride with your FastPass 
  • if the Return Time works for you (say, you don't want to catch a show at that time or have a dinner reservation), then
  • put your park ticket (or Key to the World) into the FastPass distributor 
  • out will pop your FastPass (and park ticket)
  • go about your day
  • return to your ride at the Return Time designated on your FastPass
  • have your FastPass ready
  • get in the FastPass line (generally near the normal entrance) 
  • hand your FastPass to the Cast Member where indicated

Return Times
The Return Time is generally a one-hour window, so say 1:10 PM to 2:10 PM, and you can return to ride the ride at any point during that ride. Some rides are very strict about the return times, so make sure you're not late!! 

Limited Availability
For each time window, only a certain number of FastPasses are distributed. So if there's a high demand for a ride, FastPasses for the entire day may run out at noon! This is not all together uncommon, especially during peak park days/seasons. 

Tip Boards
You can also use your iPhone app to check current wait times and Return Times being distributed. In each park, there is also a display board showing the wait times and FastPass times for the various rides throughout the park. Here's where they're located...
  • Magic Kingdom: on the lefthand side in front of the Castle, just before you enter Partner's Circle
  • Epcot: just outside of Innoventions West
  • Hollywood Studios: at the corner of Sunset and Hollywood Blvd.
  • Animal Kingdom: on Discovery Island, to the right of the tree after you enter from The Oasis
This will help you better plan out your day. If there's a short line for your favorite ride, you can hurry over and ride it. You can also check to see if FastPasses are running low for your favorite ride so you can scurry over and get one before they're gone!

Multiple FastPasses
On your FastPass it will say at what time you can get another FastPass (either for that ride or for another ride). Generally you can't get another FastPass until your current one expires or at least for a good while after you got your original Pass. So you can't just run around the park grabbing up FastPasses for every ride all at once :)

Generally the FastPass line cuts through about half of the line or more, depending on the individual ride. For example, you may only have to wait 20 minutes instead of 80 minutes to get onto Soarin' at Epcot. So just don't be surprised when you don't cut the entire line and jump right onto the ride ;)

Here is Disney's official {FastPass site} so you can read more about it, and see which rides have it! Every park has a handful of rides that utilize it! Another great FAQ page about FastPasses can be found {here on AllEars}.

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