Update Fall 2021: Walt Disney World is no longer using FastPass+. This system is permanently suspended at the Disney Parks. In its place is Genie+, a new paid program to utilize Lightning Lanes. You can find out more information here.
One thing our dad is a master at is fast passes. Used correctly they can make a HUGE diffence in your trip. If you’re trying to figure out how FastPass+ works at Disney World, this post is for you!
NOTE: FastPass+ is temporarily suspended at the Walt Disney World theme parks as the extra queue space is being used for managing capacity and social distancing.
What is a FastPass+?
You can find all the official Disney FastPass+ information here but in a nutshell, a FastPass+ selection allows you to zip ahead in line so you don’t have to wait for an attraction. You can also use FastPass+ to meet Disney Characters. (Be sure to check out our Disney Princess post for questions to ask the princesses when you meet them!)
All the attractions that have fast pass options have two lines at the entrance to the attraction: the regular line and the fast pass line. There is an hour window for you to use any fast pass. You pick the hour, reserve your pass, and sometime during that time you go up to the attraction, tap your MagicBand and redeem your reservation.
FastPass+ selections, along with dining reservations, are the most important planning decisions you will make in order to have a successful Disney World experience! On our last visit to Disney World we were walking past the 7 Dwarfs Mine Ride and heard someone say “I guess when you come to Disney World all you do is stand in line.” Your trip does not have to be this way! Use FastPass+ correctly and you will have the most magical experience.
Important FastPass+ information:
Who gets FastPass+ selections?
FastPass+ is available for ALL Disney World guests! You do NOT have to be staying on the Disney property to get one. HOWEVER, Disney hotel guests can make their FastPass+ reservations earlier than non hotel guests. (more on this below)
Do I have to pay for FastPasses?
FastPass+ selections are totally free!
You make your FastPass+ choices on the Disney app, My Disney Experience. Again, this is free.
Is there an advantage to staying on the Disney campus in regards to FastPass+?
Disney hotel guest can make their FastPass+ reservations starting at 6:00 am CST 60 days prior to your visit. Non Disney hotel guests can make their FastPass reservations 30 days out.
How soon should I reserve FastPass+ choices?
One common question is, “do I need to make the reservations 30-60 days out?” Disney World only gives out so many fast passes. Because of this, the headliner attractions like Seven Dwarfs Mine Train go very quick. In order to not miss out on top attractions our recommendation is get them as soon as they are available.
It can be hard to figure out which attractions to get fast passes for. You will need to know your itinerary prior to securing fast passes. We have a helpful planning guide that will walk through this step.
How many FastPass+ selections do I get?
Initially, you are only allowed three FastPass+ selections per day. However, after you use one you can get more for later in the day. In our opinion this can get tricky because the major attractions are nearly impossible to secure a FastPass+ for at that time so you are looking at lesser attractions. If you have a bigger group like we normally have, in the time it takes to get everyone FastPass+ selections it’s usually more efficient to go wait in line for 20 minutes.
This is totally your call on whether or not to book more FastPass+ choices! Another thing to note is there are other ways to get more FastPasses. Club Level folks get 3 extra selections, making that 6 altogether and an extended window of 90 days!
Park hopper tickets get you 3 extra FastPass+ selections in any park.
Can I adjust or change my FastPass+ reservation?
You can change a FastPass+ choice on the fly but remember, by the time you are at Disney World, there will not be much to change as typically the main attractions will not have fast passes available.
Does a FastPass+ mean I won’t wait at all for an attraction?
FastPass+ doesn’t mean there will be no wait. Some FastPass+ users have been known to wait up to 1/2 hour, but our experience has been usually a 5 to 10 minute wait. Remember this so you have the right expectations when planning your visit!
What else do I need to know about FastPass+?
There are tiers for FastPass+ in some parks so you won’t be able to FastPass+ for three headliner attractions. Magic Kingdom is the only park that does not have a tier selections. The tier system can feel a little confusing, but you can do this! We have a guide to using FastPass+ in the Animal Kingdom here and Hollywood Studios here.
This is all the main information regarding FastPasses at Disney World. This is the information that we use as a family to make choices for how we use FastPasses to have the most magical experience possible. You can see what this looks like in a practical way here.
Once you have your FastPass+ selections secured you are well on your way to having a magical time in Disney World! You have successfully accomplished one of the big hurdles of a Disney Vacation. Remember, there are lots of little things that can sneak up so be sure to take a look at 7 things to know before you leave for your trip!