Disneyland adds a single rider option on Space Mountain

December 1, 2017, 2:49 PM · Disenyland has added a single rider option for guests on its popular Space Mountain roller coaster.

Our AJ Hummel discovered the new option on his visit to the park today:

The addition of Space Mountain means that four Disneyland attractions now offer a single rider queue, joining Splash Mountain, Indiana Jones Adventure, and Matterhorn Bobsleds. Over at Disney California Adventure, you can find single rider queues at California Screamin', Goofy's Sky School, Grizzly River Run, Radiator Springs Racers.

For more rides with singe rider queues:

Replies (11)

December 2, 2017 at 7:03 AM · Robert, why would Disneyland add the single rider option now, 40 years after the ride first opened? Is it because of added stress on the attraction infrastructure by adding FastPass to the Matterhorn and holiday versions of Small World and Haunted Mansion?

Also, it seems like MaxPass implementation is not going smoothly because visitors using paper FastPasses are not prepared to show their park tickets, and that is causing backups at the FastPass entrance points.

By the way, the single rider on Space Mountain first appeared at least two weeks ago, according to Disneyland user forums.

December 2, 2017 at 1:40 AM · So I went back and tried this line in the evening, and here are a few notes/observations on it:

-The line is currently in the test phase, so it may not necessarily be available everyday. The procedure has been in place since the ride returned after Ghost Galaxy. Presumably any necessary modifications to make it permanent (if it is made permanent) will come the next time the ride goes down for refurbishment.
-To use the line, you must enter the exit and get a pass from the cast members near the ADA waiting area. The cast members at the entrance do not have the passes.
-There are no signs posted outside the attraction for the line. The only sign is at the line entrance, and it is hidden unless you know where to look (it's on the left side beyond the photo monitors...aka directly opposite the exit).
-The line enters the station at the top of the ramp down to the boarding platform. Currently, they wait until a sizable group of single riders are present, then they briefly hold the line to allow single riders to head down the ramp. Toward the bottom, the ramp is split by a railing...left is standard, right is single rider. I'm guessing the railing will be extended to the top of the ramp if the line is made permanent.
-Unlike other attractions, cast members do not fill every seat with single riders. Instead, they leave one empty seat, presumably to reduce the chance of an overweight train.
-Cast members will also pull from the single rider line if they need to form a small party, as the queue setup makes it difficult to search for one.
-The line moves fast...I was on in less than 5 minutes. Resort-wide, it is probably the second-fastest single rider line after California Screamin'.
-Overall, I'm a huge fan of this change, and I hope the line becomes permanent.

December 2, 2017 at 6:48 AM · YESSSSSSSSS! I'm headed to Anaheim early next month, and I'm thrilled about this! If only they would bring back the Hyperspace overlay as well...but no, I'm not complaining!
December 2, 2017 at 7:24 AM · It's a benefit to visitors that Disney offers single rider to popular attractions like Space Mountain, but it doesn't always save time for park visitors.

Because single riders are placed in seats that would otherwise be vacant due to uneven groups of riders (for example, parties of 3 for Space Mountain's 2-car seats, the single-rider line only moves as fast as there are gaps in the standby line.

I remember on our last visit to California Adventure, California Screamin' had continual breakdowns throughout the day. When we got in line, it seemed like the standby line was unbearably long, so we got into the single rider line, which ended up moving at a snail's pace. While the standby line was long, it was continually moving and probably would have gotten us on the ride faster AND not have broken up our party.

I've noticed the same thing on Universal Studios' Harry Potter and The Mummy single rider lines: sometimes you don't end up saving any time.

December 2, 2017 at 7:23 AM · One more issue with single rider from Disneyland user forums: some visitors really don't like having a "random" person seated next to them, especially on rides where you would be in physical contact with that person because the ride jostles you side-to-side or the seats are tight in general.

I'm thinking Indiana Jones and Space Mountain in the first category and Goofy' s Sky School in the second.

I don't necessarily agree with this argument, but once I was at California Adventure by myself and went on Goofy' s Sky School by myself, either with a FastPass or single rider. The ride operator put me in a car with a group of 3 high school-age girls, and I have to say, as a guy with my own kids in high school and middle school, it was uncomfortable for the entire 90 seconds of the ride for the young woman and for me (for me, probably because I sensed her discomfort). I probably should have asked the ride seater to wait for another car, but he probably didn't want to put me in a car with kids or an adult woman.

A little off-topic, but I've also read stories of people who ended up sitting with total strangers on Mr. Toad and on the Haunted Mansion.

December 2, 2017 at 8:25 AM · >>>Because single riders are placed in seats that would otherwise be vacant due to uneven groups of riders (for example, parties of 3 for Space Mountain's 2-car seats, the single-rider line only moves as fast as there are gaps in the standby line.

However, because the trains are leaving more full, everyone saves time vs a model without a single rider line.

December 2, 2017 at 10:18 AM · This worked great in Hong Kong, so hoping this becomes permanent.
December 2, 2017 at 4:09 PM · Disney usually closes the single rider lines if they become too lengthy, but it is impossible to determine exactly how long it will take to get on. In my experience, Matterhorn Bobsleds and Splash Mountain are the only rides where single rider routinely crawls. It does tend to pulse at some attractions rather than move continuously, so that may make it feel as if the line is moving slower than it really is.

That said, in general I recommend avoiding single rider if the standby wait is less than 20-25 minutes unless you are truly visiting alone or you can see that the line is empty. There is no guarantee that single rider will be notably quicker than the standby line, and I've found that it usually doesn't result in significant savings when the regular line is already short. I also recommend against using it for parties of more than 3-4 unless that standby is really long, as it is possible the group could wind up spread apart by quite a bit. The rides with 2 or 3 seats per grouping usually rely on the line quite a bit, but on others they will try to put two small parties together before relying on singles.

Lastly, when it comes to being seated next to strangers, as long as everyone is in a separate seat it shouldn't ever be an issue. On Toad, Mansion, or even something like Pirates, there is one seat that is wide enough to accommodate multiple riders, and Disney will not group separate parties together on these attractions. It can happen if guests aren't paying attention (I've been randomly joined by others on Pirates before...they didn't realize they weren't supposed to board until the boat started moving and the rest of their party was waving to them), but it isn't a normal occurrence. On something like Indy, Sky School, Space Mountain, or other similar rides, however, everyone is in their own seat with a barrier between themselves and others. On these attractions, Disney should absolutely make efforts to fill every seat on these rides, as it keeps the line moving and helps everyone to get on faster. If an individual has a problem with sitting next to a stranger, they can let the grouper know (and they'll probably be accommodated), but I'm pretty sure 99% of guests don't really care.

December 2, 2017 at 8:33 PM · Finally, Disney listens. More single rider lines, please.
December 4, 2017 at 7:31 AM · Single rider lines are very tricky with Disney attractions. Disney tends to cater more to families, especially those with smaller children. Filling empty seats can often lead to uncomfortable situations with strangers being placed next to smaller children, or if ride ops do attempt to limit strangers next to small children, seats will go empty, angering those that chose to wait in the single rider line. The whole process turns into a profiling exercise, with CMs trying to determine who in the single rider line can sit next to a small child, or asking families to reorganize themselves to put one of the family's adults next to the single rider.

This isn't such a big deal with bigger rides where younger kids can't ride, but Space Mountain is not quite a "big ride" in my book with a height restriction of just 40", meaning 3 and 4 year olds could conceivably ride. Even with separate seats and restraints (unlike TSMM, where the single rider line was canned), a pedophile could theoretically still prey on small children sitting next to them without being observed (in the dark and no way to see actions from adjacent rows). I'd like to think there are people that would take advantage of a situation like this, but unfortunately they do exist, and Disney should do everything they can to protect against it. I do recall when DCA used to have a single rider line for TSMM, and it was incredibly awkward, because guests in the single rider line would see seats go empty because they didn't want to put singles next to kids (even if it was another kid in the singles line), so in the grand scheme of things, it didn't really increase attraction throughput enough to warrant the additional hassle of managing the single rider line. I think they may find the same situation with Space Mountain. The single rider lines work for Indy because of the 4-across seating, the Matterhorn works because of the toboggan style seating with dividers, the RSR line works because of the 3-across seating, while the California Screamin'/Incredicoaster works because of the height restriction and the GRR works because of the individual seats and arrangement.

I would hope that Disney finds a way to make this work, but they've got to be extremely careful of how it's managed.

December 8, 2017 at 9:50 AM · I agree with Russel.

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