Fastpass is not coming back to the Walt Disney World and Disneyland resorts. The old Fastpass queues at their theme parks will become "Lightning Lane," accessible only through one of two new paid options.
One option will be Disney Genie+, which is essentially a rebranded version of Disneyland's old MaxPass service. Disney Genie+ will cost $20 a day at Disneyland and $15 a day at Walt Disney World and allow guests to make one reservation at a time to enter the Lightning Lane at participating attractions. About 15 attractions will be available across the Disneyland theme parks and about 40 will be participating at Walt Disney World, including Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, Haunted Mansion, and Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run.
The other option will be to purchase individual Lightning Lane access. This option will be available up to twice a day to guests and will allow access to select attractions not available on Disney Genie+. Prices will vary by date and are not yet available, but participating attractions may include Radiator Springs Racers at Disney California Adventure, Seven Dwarfs Mine Train at Magic Kingdom, and the upcoming Remy's Ratatouille Attraction at Epcot.
Guests who buy Disney Genie+ may make their first reservation starting at 7am the morning of their visit at Walt Disney World and when they enter the park at Disneyland. Individual Lightning Lane purchases will be available at park opening, except for Walt Disney World Resort hotel guests, who may purchase access starting at 7am the morning of their visit. (Disneyland Resort hotel guests will not get that exception.)
This means that making advance Fastpass+ reservations is now a thing of the past. No more getting up early 30 or 60 days before your visit to try to snag coveted Fastpass+ reservations. That will not return. If you want to avoid the standby queue at Walt Disney World or Disneyland, you will need to pay for Disney Genie+ or individual Lightning Lane access on the day of your visit.
For everyone else, Disney will try to minimize your expected wait times by offering its new Disney Genie service through the official My Disney Experience and Disneyland Resort apps. Unlike Disney Genie+, Disney Genie is a free service that will create a custom itinerary for you to visit the parks.
In addition to the personalized itinerary that includes suggested attractions and dining options, Disney Genie will post forecasted future wait times for later in the day, based on Disney's internal crowd data. Visitors will be able to join virtual queues, place mobile dining orders and join table service restaurant wait lists through Disney Genie, as well. A virtual assistant will be included to answer guest questions or connect you to a cast member for help.
"Disney Genie listens to the preferences that guests share with us to help design their best day and deliver an experience that’s made just for them," Disney Parks, Experiences and Products Chairman Josh D’Amaro said. "Pairing incredible technology with more than 60 years of expertise about how our guests visit the parks, Disney Genie will personalize their Disney day, allowing guests to spend less time planning and waiting and more time doing the things they love."
Free standby or virtual queues will continue to be available for all Walt Disney World and Disneyland attractions. And if fewer people pay for Lightning Lane than used the old free Fastpass queues, theoretically those standby waits should be shorter than they were under the old Fastpass and Fastpass+ systems. (Though those waits likely would be longer than they are now, when neither Fastpass nor an alternative is available.)
In addition to Lightning Lane access, Disney Genie+ will include unlimited Disney PhotoPass downloads at the Disneyland Resort, as the old MaxPass service did. At Walt Disney World, exclusive augmented reality lenses will replace PhotoPass as the photo benefit under Disney Genie+. At both parks, Disney Genie+ will include Disney parks-themed audio experiences through the app, including attraction commentary from Imagineers.
Disney Genie, Disney Genie+, and Lightning Lane will debut sometime this fall. A specific launch date will be announced later. Disney Genie+ and individual Lightning Lane access will be available for purchase through the official resort apps when they launch. For now, annual passholders and Magic Key holders will not be able to add the programs to their passes and will have to purchase them on day-of-use, like other park guests.
And like with MaxPass, there will be no cap on the number of Disney Genie+ upgrades sold each day. The arrival times distributed through Disney Genie+ will be limited based on attraction availability.
In conjunction with the Disney Genie launch, Disney will be changing its Disability Access Service program, adding an option to enroll before arrival and to attractions directly through the app. Those new options will be available in addition to the existing in-person DAS program.
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