When will the Star Wars Galaxy's Edge lands open?

March 4, 2019, 10:47 AM · Update (March 7): Well, we muffed it. Sort of. Disneyland's official opening date will be May 31 and Disney World's will be August 29. But Disneyland's land will be reservation only until June 23, so we weren't far off on that prediction. And the Rise of the Resistance ride won't be available at either land at opening, but is coming "later this year." Full story

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We are entering the window when Disney might announce the official opening dates for its upcoming Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge lands at Disneyland and Walt Disney World's Disney's Hollywood Studios. The first opportunity for an announcement will be at Thursday's annual meeting for stockholders in The Walt Disney Company.

But we already have a strong idea when the lands will open. So we are inviting you to "place your bets" on the Star Wars lands' opening dates, too.

Last June, we forecast that the most likely opening date for Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge at the Disneyland Resort would be June 22, 2019. We forecasting a Saturday opening in the anticipation that Disney won't want to cause a public relations backlash by clogging area streets and freeways during a weekday rush hour, as fans cram the Mickey and Friends parking structure for the openings. We have no reason to come off that June forecast, so we are sticking with it.

As for Walt Disney World, we now are forecasting an opening date for Galaxy's Edge of October 1, 2019. That forecast is based in information from multiple sources on when the land's attractions are scheduled to be turned from construction crews over to operations cast members, accounting for time for training plus some fudge factor.

While we see little opportunity for soft opens at Disneyland, that fudge factor in Orlando gives us a slight chance that we could see softs in advance of October 1 at Disney World. But we believe that the prospect of opening the land on the resorts' 49th anniversary — kicking off a lead-up to the 50th one year later — will be too much of a PR coup for Disney to resist and that it will designate October 1 as the opening date.

Now, for all the disclaimers. These are not official announcements from Disney. Disney could choose to announce the Disneyland opening this week, then hold off on announcing Disney World's until later. Since both lands share a common design, any last-minute delays at Disneyland could affect when construction could turn over Disney World's project, potentially pushing back the Hollywood Studios opening.

And finally, Disney could decide that it wants to hold a joint media event in Florida for the openings of Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge and the other big attraction opening at Disney's Hollywood Studios this fall, Mickey and Minnie's Runaway Railway. If that becomes the case, when the Mickey ride is ready factors into the official opening date for Galaxy's Edge... even though we believe that the Star Wars land will be ready and potentially soft-opened to guests around October 1.

What's your best guess for the openings of Galaxy's Edge? And if you are planning to visit the new lands already, when are you looking to be there?

Replies (12)

March 4, 2019 at 11:25 AM

The Deluxe pass is blocked from June 21st though July and half of August at Disneyland. I'm thinking June 21st is the date.

March 4, 2019 at 11:35 AM

Robert, are we talking the Galactic Standard Calendar or Earth's Gregorian calendar? October 1st is a strong date being synonymous with WDW. I'll go for that.

March 4, 2019 at 11:37 AM

The only problem with June 21 is that it is a Friday, and I don't think Disneyland wants the story to be about it disrupting rush hour traffic instead of the popularity of the land itself. There might be some media event before the 22nd, but I think a Saturday for an official open makes the most logistical sense.

And ProfPlum for the win on the calendar comment.

March 4, 2019 at 11:38 AM

I think the June 22nd date is bang on, give or take a day. My only issue with the guess of October 1st is that DW-HS has always been about five-to-six months behind DL. October 1st from June 22nd is closer to three-and-a-half months difference, and I'm not sure if the DW-HS team has picked up the pace that much. Maybe an October 1st opening for Mickey's Railway, and then a bit later for Galaxy's Edge. Around American Thanksgiving would be my guess.

As for whether I'm planning to visit the new land? ABSOLUTELY. In 2021. When things have calmed down a bit. Maybe in late 2020. I might be wrong, but I think the crowds will be insufferable at Hollywood Studios for the first year after SW-GE's opening.

March 4, 2019 at 1:10 PM

Actually, B Goodwin, the construction milestones between the two projects have been almost exactly 3 months apart. However, it does seem that the Orlando project has fallen a bit behind based on recent messaging from Disney. Over the first year of construction, an October 2019 opening seemed like a sure bet (maybe even September). However, Disney's recent announcements last fall seemed to indicate a November opening, which is why we canned the notion of taking a trip to Orlando this fall, but have kept our tentative plans to visit SoCal in Late July/Early August. There's a lot going on at WDW during October, that I would be skeptical that they would put such a big debut along with MNSSHP and the EPCOT F&W Festival in full swing. Plus, Disney already pushed lots of October room discounts/free dining for that time period, so it doesn't really make sense that they would give out discounted rooms and free DDP and then open Galaxy's Edge too.

I'm thinking that Disneyland's version will open in late June, while DHS's version will open by the second weekend of November, which gives them a couple of weeks of slightly slower crowds before the Thanksgiving crush. We might not visit WDW again until 2021 (once Tron, Guardians, and Ratatouille are open), but definitely won't go against until next year after Galaxy's Edge has settled down a bit (and BGT's new RMC is open).

March 4, 2019 at 1:15 PM

Isn't this year the 48th anniversary of WDW, not the 49th?

March 4, 2019 at 2:38 PM

Have we taken into account the possibility of “a paid soft opening” like the upcharge event at DL for Oixar Pier?

March 4, 2019 at 3:02 PM

I agree with Russell...late June for Disneyland and mid November for WDW sounds about right based on everything I've seen and heard. I'm also doubtful of a public soft opening for either land, but upcharge preview parties seem quite likely. Doesn't matter much to me...I'll be waiting until after winter break to visit Disneyland's version, and probably won't be doing another Florida trip until at least 2021.

March 4, 2019 at 3:25 PM

I don`t think Disney will want the Runaway Railway ride getting lost in the Star Wars hype, so my guess is that they`ll open that ride in October, and SW:GE in November.

March 4, 2019 at 4:16 PM

Check your LinkedIn version of this same post, Robert, I shared a photo of a roadsign at the Florida state line claiming the line for Star Wars Galaxy's Edge starts there. Couldn't get the same image to share properly here...

March 5, 2019 at 9:57 PM

I'd say Galaxy's Edge will be opening on Saturday July the 6th. I was just backstage on the 2nd, and there was still ongoing construction on many of the structures I could see.
Edit: OCR has a good article- https://www.ocregister.com/2019/03/05/step-inside-star-wars-galaxys-edges-millennium-falcon-on-a-behind-the-scenes-tour-of-the-disneyland-ride/
real date tba on Thursday!

March 7, 2019 at 10:51 AM

Sounds like we're all wrong as Disney announced this morning that DL's version will open on May 31st and DHS will open almost 3 months later on August 29th. However, it sounds like the lands may not be fully armed and operational when the official open to the public.

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