Which Disney Attractions Are Worth the Wait?
What are you willing to wait for? Where I’m from, people stand in the streets for hours whenever there’s a good deal. When a famous desserts shop near me has a 2 for 1 cupcake sale, the line goes on for blocks. If a museum is offering free admission, the queue stretches for so long and snakes around so many corners to properly judge just how long it really is. The lines I’m talking about are probably filled by people who have some time to kill, and were time of the essence I’m certain the lines would be much much shorter.
Which leads me to this question: what attractions are you willing to wait for? You can make 3 Fastpass+ reservations for each day of your vacation, although the last time I visited, there were more than 3 attractions in each park with lengthy wait times! There are some big ticket attractions that live up to the hype, and some that are only good for eating up precious park time. So, which attractions are worth the wait?
Epcot’s Fastpass+ policy is slightly different than the other parks since you can only reserve one of the following attractions per day: Test Track, Frozen Ever After, and Soarin’. That doesn’t really work for me since I want to ride every one of those attractions when I visit, though after enduring very lengthy wait times for each (think 90+ mins), I’ve nixed one off the ‘must-ride’ list when the wait times creep up.
You should use your top tier Fastpass+ reservation for Soarin’, end of story. Frozen’s wait can be very long, and although the boarding process is slow, the wait is worth it for the state-of-the-art animatronics and famous tunes. Its 0-60 mph finale sure is exciting, but Test Track is the one that I can’t justify waiting for. The wait feels like forever as you snake through endless rooms with a mundane atmosphere, and the ride is over just as soon as it began.
As of right now there are a grand total of 5 attraction that have a potential for a wait time, and 3 that regularly creep over 90 minutes. The recent gripe among guests has been the polar opposite of what we’ve come to expect from a Disney park: not enough to do to constitute a full day. Disney has a plan of action, and with the opening of Toy Story Land this summer and the new Star Wars land coming next year, they’re hoping to reverse the parks’ half-day reputation.
Any visitor to the Walt Disney World Resort should plan to make Hollywood Studios part of their vacation, even in its current form! With less attractions come longer wait times, and the one attraction not worth your time in line is Rock ‘n’ Rollercoaster. I’d be lying if I said the studio-themed queue line isn’t one of the better ones- I mean come on, there’s a full recording studio! One room in a queue that lasts over an hour does not a happy parkgoer make, and the ride itself is bumpy, jarring, and in need of a major track upgrade before I’ll ever subject my neck to its tortures again!
There are two camps: guests who are here for the iconic Castle pic and nostalgic opening-day attractions, and the guests who flock for the newest, most groundbreaking attractions. No matter which category you fall into, there are more than enough magical adventures inside Magic Kingdom to occupy at least 2 full days of your trip. Smart vacationers hoping to experience as much of Magic Kingdom as possible plan their Fastpass+ reservations well, and know which attractions to allot time to wait for.
Even the best-intentioned planner runs out of time at Walt Disney World (it’s happened to me more than once!) and it’s important to know which attractions with superbly long wait times are ok to skip. The Jungle Cruise and Peter Pan’s Flight are not worth their daily 100+ minute waits, trust me. The Jungle Cruises’ slow boarding process, long run time, and ensuing plastic animals make the already corny jokes a lot less funny when you finally do board a boat. Over in Neverland, the extremely long wait will take you through endless rooms only to be culminated by a ride that lasts less than 2 minutes…skip it!
I know it’s new and I know it’s popular, yet both petty high school cliques and Na’vi River Journey have taught me that ‘new’ and ‘popular’ don’t always live up to the hype. Since the opening of Pandora last year, the popularity of two new attractions in the land are doing a great job of ensuring you can only ride one of them if you’re hoping to have time to experience the rest of Animal Kingdom on your visit.
Flight of Passage’s revolutionary technology combined with cutting-edge digital animation and a 3D look that blows my mind every time, it’s the clear choice here for all of these reasons…plus the fact that Na’vi River Journey is hands down the most lackluster attraction I’ve ever been on. You start in a glowing Pandora forest, you wait for a story that never begins, and before you know it, the attraction is over. Don’t waste your time! If you’re planning to do one big wait at Animal Kingdom, make it Flight of Passage or Kilimanjaro Safari’s!
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Special thanks to Maria Salerno for writing this article: Hiya pal! I am a NYC-based writer/musician thrilled to be bringing you all things Disney! I’m a WDW Annual Passholder, so you can find me in the parks regularly throughout the year. In addition to being a Disney Parks loving girl, I’m also a Disney toy and merchandise collector, a runDisney enthusiast, and Disney music and movie aficionado. You can follow me on Instagram: NYCtoAP and find me on YouTube: NYCtoAP. Thanks for reading, hope to see ya real soon!