What to Expect with Disney’s Rise of the Resistance?
By now, you know that Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance presents the toughest challenge at Walt Disney World.
Guests clamor for the opportunity to ride this attraction, so much so that Disney had to build an entire virtual queue just for Rise of the Resistance.
You’ve probably heard that you’ll need to do some planning to have a chance at experiencing the best thing at Disney today.
Here are a few guidelines on what you should expect with Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance.
Boarding Group Basics
When the ride opened last December, Disney’s Hollywood Studios immediately enjoyed a traffic surge.
Guests heard the overwhelming buzz about Rise of the Resistance and wanted to check it out for themselves.
For Disney officials, the increased demand worked as a dual-edged sword.
On the one hand, the company got more customers shelling out big bucks at Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge.
On the other, the ride’s throughput wasn’t significant enough to meet the massive demand.
Guests pull up the My Disney Experience app on their phones and try to schedule a Boarding Group.
Presuming that the ride has availability, My Disney Experience assigns guests a random Boarding Group.
This system works like golf in that a lower number is better. When you have a Boarding Group of 1, you’ll get to ride immediately.
Technically, Disney assigns you a time window. You must arrive at the attraction within this timeframe.
Otherwise, you’re out of luck and have wasted your big moment.
If you have a higher number for your Boarding Group, especially 100 or higher, you’re also possibly out of luck.
Disney doesn’t guarantee a set number of rides daily.
In fact, at the start of a park day, nobody knows how much downtime Rise of the Resistance will experience.
An attraction with this many technical components is that much more likely to break down.
When that happens, the ride closes, reducing its throughput for the day.
So, if you have a Boarding Group number of 100 and notice the ride has closed for an hour, you should lower your expectations.
You’ll Have Two Chances
Initially, Disney changed Boarding Group processes frequently.
After a while, park officials concluded that they needed something fair to everyone.
During the earliest days, some guests would arrive at Disney’s Hollywood Studios two or three hours before it opened.
Then, they’d all participate in a mad scramble for Boarding Groups. Some would experience bitter disappointment before they ever even entered the park.
To avoid such frustration, Disney has changed the rules to a system that works better.
Guests receive two chances to schedule a Boarding Group. At 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., the booking window opens until all Boarding Groups have sold out.
You can only ride Rise of the Resistance once per park day. So, the competition diminishes at 2 p.m.
The people who have already scheduled a Boarding Group no longer need to participate.
On the downside, Hollywood Studios employs reduced park hours due to the pandemic.
So, you’ll need a smaller Boarding Group number to have a reasonable chance at riding Rise of the Resistance.
Also, Hollywood Studios will close at 7 p.m. throughout the fall. You should ask a cast member to verify that the second chance lottery happens at 2 p.m.
I wouldn’t be surprised if Disney moved it up an hour, and I’d hate to give you the wrong information.
Remember that everything involving Rise of the Resistance could change at a moment’s notice.
Keep reading MickeyBlog daily to stay informed on the topic.
What to Do Once You Have a Boarding Group
Once you have a Boarding Group, you’ll need to pay attention.
No, you won’t do anything else until your group gets called, but you should still remain alert.
Keep an eye on Rise of the Resistance in My Disney Experience. Notice whether it goes down at any point during the day.
Every outage reduces the number of Boarding Groups the ride will host throughout the day.
Think about the situation from this perspective. Hollywood Studios has operated for 10 hours per day since its reopening.
A closure of an hour means that Rise of the Resistance will host 10 percent fewer guests. It’s just math.
Also, you shouldn’t leave the park once you have a Boarding Group.
Some people disagree with this opinion, but I feel strongly about this one.
When you exit the park, you run the risk of Disney calling your Boarding Group. At that point, you become reliant on transportation to get you back.
Let’s say that you visit Disney’s Riviera Resort to have lunch there.
Theoretically, you could finish your meal and take the Disney Skyliner back to the front of the park in a matter of minutes.
However, should the Skyliner be offline, you’ll get delayed. You could feasibly miss your Boarding Group window.
The unconventional part of the Boarding Group process involves time assignments. They’re random.
Let’s say that you have Boarding Group 56. You won’t know when Disney opens your ride window until you get a message indicating you’re up.
So, you’ll spend much of your park day planning around the potential for your Boarding Group window.
Should you run into time conflicts, look for a cast member at a Guest Experience Team station. Ask them for help in resolving the problem.
What to Expect with Your Boarding Group
When you have a Boarding Group with a higher number, you may worry about whether you’ll get to ride.
As you might imagine, many sites track Rise of the Resistance Boarding Group statistics.
So, I can provide some information about reasonable expectations.
For the month of July, which was really just two weeks of park operations, the average wait-time for this ride was 36 minutes.
Similarly, August had an average time of 36 minutes, too. Thus far in September, the wait has ticked up to 42 minutes.
However, this data applies to guests who have already had their Boarding Groups called. For guests who are awaiting Boarding Group windows, the situation varies more.
Warning: Boring but Important Math Ahead
During the week before Labor Day, Rise of the Resistance hosted an average of 99 Boarding Groups daily.
The lowest total of Boarding Groups was 80, while the highest was 128.
You can tell from this data where things get dicey. As long as you receive a Boarding Group assignment of 60 or less, you should be fine.
Above that, well, you’ll sweat some and not from the Florida heat.
During July, Rise of the Resistance serviced fewer than 60 Boarding Groups on only two days. In August, the number increased to five.
I would add some caveats to that. For starters, Hollywood Studios was open twice as long in August as July.
Also, a strange lightning strike incident forced the ride’s early closure. I think it’s fair to conclude that Rise of the Resistance will host more than 60 groups roughly nine days out of 10.
Over the six weeks, the ride has generally reached 80 and sometimes even 100 Boarding Groups.
As long as Rise of the Resistance avoids technical glitches, it can sustain higher throughput.
In fact, through the first six days of September, the ride has served an average of about 99 Boarding Groups.
So, if you receive a Boarding Group of 80 or higher, don’t give up hope. Lately, Disney has done a superlative job with throughput.
Overall, with park attendance this low, you’ll have a solid chance of riding Rise of the Resistance.
Feature Image Rights: Disney