WDW experimenting with centralized Fastpass distribution

Wednesday, July 29, 2009 3:43 PM
Lord Gonchar's avatar

I think you'd be surprised at how many people already 'work' on their Disney Vacation. I'm partially guilty myself and I went during one of the slowest times of the year.

In fact, helping people create schedules and itineraries for their WDW vacation has become a business in itself.

Disney doesn't leave money on the table very often and they certainly don't leave it there for others to take. It just seems inevitable.

And heck, when 80% of some rides capacity is given away to FastPass users, aren't we kind of scheduling our day (in part at least) already?


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Wednesday, July 29, 2009 3:58 PM
ridemcoaster's avatar

a very small part yes.. I guess it depends on the level of scheduling.

Which Park to go to: Understand. You have to know where to drive at some point

Restaurants: Understand.. Cant stack 80 people at 1 table. So naturally you will be on time table

Rides: Other than Disney which has FP, I just wait in line.. My life is ok doing that. Probably that way at WDW due to convenience.. Doesnt take much to walk up to machine for free. But I still end up waiting in line to "double my ride".

Everything else.. Meh.. Is what it is.. I work for DoD.. Things are fast pace and always within time frames. On vacation, I look forward to just sitting in my room at boardwalk and watching the "ants" scatter about.


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Wednesday, July 29, 2009 4:30 PM

Like it or not, most of us schedule at least part of our day at any park, think about it.

Do you or do you not know what ride you will be going on first before hand? Ditto on ride #2, and possibly ride #3. We dont just walk up and go on whatever ride strikes our fancy first, we go on the ride that we know will have the longest line first to avoid that line, and then we go on the second longest wait of the day, etc. Once you get past the first 2 hours in a park, you probably drop the schedule but you were on one for the most important two hours of the day, and you probably have a "schedule" of sorts for the end of your day too (which rides do I want to ride at night, and how do I go about doing so in the least amount of time.)

Ive been scheduling Disney trips since the second one way back in 1998. What park, what resturants, and even (before I knew the place well enough) the ride order to bypass the waits (no I just "schedule" in my head.) Of course I have never (even on the day before the 4th of July, or Easter Sunday) waited in a line at Disney World for more then 30 minutes either, for which I would gladly schedule my day, I dont really care about sponinatity, I know what rides I want to ride (and reride) and if there is a way to do so with the least amount of waiting in line then heck yeah sign me up!

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Wednesday, July 29, 2009 5:10 PM
ridemcoaster's avatar

Ahh see.. this is where we diverge..

We dont even plan on what ride to go to before hand at Disney. We walk in the park and pretty much walk around. Take in whats changed, and whats not. If we come across a ride that peaks our interest then we go on.

I think the difference is we visit Disney quite a bit in a year. The urge to "be somewhere" just isnt that great. We see our trips there as a huge chance to slow down and enjoy life.


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Wednesday, July 29, 2009 5:15 PM

Yeah some of us only go to Disney once every couple of years.

That said, Epcot we go "off schedule" once Future World is done with in the morning. World Showcase's lines are never long, and shows/performers are fantastic but you never really know when/where someone is preforming. The only thing that remains on the schedule is the dinner reservation and the fact that around 8:15-8:30 we are going to line up for a good spot to watch Illuminations.

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Wednesday, July 29, 2009 5:19 PM
DaveStroem's avatar

Well, I like to hit the attractions when at WDW, not stand in line for them. So by using Ridemax, I can get everything I want to get done with a minimum of waiting in ques. This also give me the best Fastpass strategy so I don't have to think about it.

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Wednesday, July 29, 2009 5:22 PM
Lord Gonchar's avatar

ridemcoaster said:
I think the difference is we visit Disney quite a bit in a year.

That might be it, but in researching our own trip I found there are people who are pretty regular visitors who still plan every little detail of their WDW getaway. (and you'd be amazed at how detailed the planning gets)

I also found countless resources offering itineraries, advice, tools and information for planning and getting the most out of your Disney vacation - many of them for a small fee.

Imagine the value of this service coming straight from the source. Like most things, it's won't necessarily be for everyone, but there is certainly a market for the 'pre-planned and pre-reserved' Disney World vacation.


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Wednesday, July 29, 2009 5:25 PM
ridemcoaster's avatar

Makes sense.. There are things that you are stove piped into time tables.. Specifically events that are already on timetables.. Those are unavoidable.

Disney and BEC Parks are the only ones we dont timetable too. Ones we frequent less we revert to some level of scheduling, but still no where near as much as some people i have seen.

I spend too much of my normal day on one.. I look for any opportunity to be off it, even if just for a little bit.


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Wednesday, July 29, 2009 6:15 PM
DaveStroem's avatar

First timers or people that have not been for quite a while often get down there and are so overwelmed that they miss quite a bit of the Magic. This is where I feel that planning can make or break a trip.

For the regulars, planning is less important. You already know that when you get to MK, you go grab a FP for a mountain or Peter Pan. You also know that if you want to eat at a sit down restaurant you need to make your reservations well before getting to Orlando.

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Wednesday, July 29, 2009 9:39 PM
Jeff's avatar

FastPass is the kind of "scheduling" though that doesn't go more than two hours out for the most part. And the best part of it is that if you change your mind about going to an attraction, there's no penalty for bailing. With most people spending several days at WDW, I don't think there's a lot of risk that you'll miss anything because of a lack of planning.


Jeff - Editor - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog - Music: The Modern Gen-X - Video

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Wednesday, July 29, 2009 9:43 PM

Fastpass is not like a schedule though, because you can come back at anytime after the start of your window (or in some cases another day entirely if they aren't paying attention.) Becomes extremely convenient for when I want a night ride on Splash, BTMRR or ToT without having to wait.

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Wednesday, July 29, 2009 10:11 PM
Lord Gonchar's avatar

Jeff said:
With most people spending several days at WDW, I don't think there's a lot of risk that you'll miss anything because of a lack of planning.

Really? I think I disagree. I think.

Miss any of the major things one would most likely list as "must do" during their visit? Probably not.

Miss things lower on the list than "must do" rides and attractions that you might not have if going in with a plan/itinerary of some sorts? Easily.


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Wednesday, July 29, 2009 10:15 PM

I know way too many people who went to WDW and thought that Epcot had no rides or attractions in World Showcase, they were just "facades with restaurants."

Also, I have yet to meet a person who plans their WDW vacation and does not have a good time, Ive met plenty of people who "winged it" and came out thinking that the place was horrible.

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Wednesday, July 29, 2009 10:17 PM
The Mole's avatar

Jeff said:


robotfactory said:
4.) Jeff says "One day you'll be able to schedule your whole day. Wake me up when that happens."

What are you talking about? Why would I say that?

And who hates FastPass, honestly? Hating it demonstrates a fundamental inability to understand it.

Yes, so Disneyland hates it, that's why they don't have it on Toy Story Mania and they get 30 minutes waits, while at the Studios they have it and stand by is 75 minutes all day and the tickets run out by 10:30.

FastPass on 1/3 of the attractions that are on it now is ridiculous!

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Wednesday, July 29, 2009 10:22 PM

Toy Story Mania is also at a park that attracts a whole lot less people then DHS. It also is not the only headliner ride at a park that isnt a thrill ride.

Dont blame Fastpass entirely for the long line.

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Wednesday, July 29, 2009 11:44 PM
LostKause's avatar

Planning every detail seem way too stressful for a day that's supposed to be fun, to me anyways.

Most any park I go to, while traveling there or while parking, I always discuss what we might want to do first and maybe second. I don't plan a first-two-hour itinerary weeks before my visit.

I just go with the flow, and really enjoy myself most of the time.

An exception to this is when I visited KI the second week that they were open this year. Diamondback was planned as the first ride, ever since I made plans to go to the park. Cousin Chase and I waited at the rope. It was a really fun experience just waiting there for an hour.


EDITED to add a coma

EDITED again to say that I meant comma. :)

Last edited by LostKause, Thursday, July 30, 2009 5:54 PM
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Thursday, July 30, 2009 12:03 AM
Lord Gonchar's avatar

The Mole said:
Yes, so Disneyland hates it, that's why they don't have it on Toy Story Mania and they get 30 minutes waits, while at the Studios they have it and stand by is 75 minutes all day and the tickets run out by 10:30.

The stand-by is that much longer in Florida because most people are riding using FastPass. Both rides still have the same capacity - the only difference is how they distibute the available seats. The stand-by is practically irrelevant because the majority of riders aren't using it.

LostKause said:
EDITED to add a coma

Oh god, the possibilities are endless. But in the end I just can't do it. :) ;)


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Thursday, July 30, 2009 1:12 AM
sws's avatar

LostKause said:
EDITED to add a coma

And when he comes out of his coma, the first thing LK is going to do is to buy a gold Q-bot. :)

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Thursday, July 30, 2009 8:50 AM

Disneyland Paris is the oversea Disney park that started earlier this year to sell a "Premium" Fast Pass. Its 80 euros (112$ US) per person and gives unlimited access to the Fast Pass lines. Given the price to buy it, few people are buying it, since admission to the parks there is so expensive. If you're crazy enough to buy a ticket at the gate, we're talking 72$ for your 1 day/1 park ticket, 112$ for the premium fast pass and 12 euros (17$ US) for a hamburger/fries/330 ml soda (little more than a cup!). It gets expensive!

Disneyland Paris has experimented with adding fast pass to a ride and the trial went so badly, they didn't continue it. The ride is Crush Coaster. Its basically the standard Maurer-Sohne spinning coaster, like at Waldameer, in a box with a small lift and dark ride portion before. On paper, it may sound like it could get good capacity, running 12-13 cars, non stop loading in the station... But, sadly, the capacity is under 700 people per hour and if you add fast pass, where they'd give 350-450 tickets per hour, the stand-by line, which is already 90-120 minutes, ballooned to 3-4 hours and fast passes were gone within an hour of park opening.


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Thursday, July 30, 2009 4:38 PM

LostKause said:
Planning every detail seem way too stressful for a day that's supposed to be fun, to me anyways.

My last WDW trip I used one of those businesses Gonch talked about and planned our days at the park. I found that it was far from stressful, in fact it was fun. Because the schedule was working so well, we never felt like there was even the possibility that we wouldnt get to see/do everything we wanted. It made the days *more* leisurely IMO.

I would reccommend to anyone to do the same. I will be doing it always. Besides, even though you have a schedule, you dont have to be a slave to it. More like an outline than a honey-do list.


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