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Disney counters Universal with new virtual queue for water park rides

March 28, 2017, 2:08 PM · The Walt Disney World Resort today introduced a new line-skipping system, which it will test on selected water park rides at Blizzard Beach and Typhoon Lagoon.

Last year, Universal Orlando announced that its upcoming Volcano Bay park would feature no standby queues for its water rides. Instead, all boarding would come from virtual queues. When the park opens May 25, visitors will claim return times on rides by using a wearable device, called a TapuTapu, to "tap" into each ride's entrance to claim their place in "line." Think of it as a virtual Fastpass system, but with no app and no standby queues.

Today, Disney started testing its own virtual queue system at Blizzard Beach. It doesn't use Disney's MagicBands or My Disney Experience app. And instead of using a wearable device like TapuTapu, visitors just get a card with a printed return time to wear around their wrist. From the Orlando Sentinel's report, it also appears that the virtual queue is being offered as an option to the traditional stand-by queue, so this really seems a bit more like Fastpass 1.0 with wristbands and a narrower return window (15 minutes) than a true copy of Universal's new system.

But it's a test. The new system launched with the Downhill Double Dipper slide today and may expand to other slides at Blizzard Beach and Typhoon Lagoon over the next few weeks, according to the Sentinel. The test is expected to conclude sometime in April.

Replies (3)

March 28, 2017 at 6:59 PM · All of these virtual Queues are basically just old-school fastpass paper tickets. Granted, Fallon is a little different with the in queue entertainment but you are still waiting. But the Waterparks are different. You walk to an attraction, scan your band (ie grab a ticket) come back later to ride. Um????? how is that any different from legacy FP ticket booths??????
Disney, why did you invest all that money to go back to 2010 standard practice?????
Love the Magicband for paying and hotel key, but rides, NO THANK YOU!
Until you implant chips into my body, this isn't any better than what is available now!
March 29, 2017 at 2:18 AM · One day you will walk into a theme park and they will give you schedule for the day. Every attraction you want to visit will be listed with a 15 minute visit windows.

I'm not sure if i'm looking forward to it or dreading it.

March 29, 2017 at 4:36 AM · Aquatica Orlando has offered 'Quick Queue' for many of their slides for almost a year now. Quick Queue is an up-charge that grants purchasers to skip the line.

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