Walt Disney World Wait Times for October 12-18, 2021
We’ve entered a new era at Disney’s American theme parks. Executives have promised that Disney Genie will reduce wait times at park attractions.
We cannot test this premise yet, as the app’s too new for this week. However, we can examine the final week under the old system.
Then, we’ll contrast the two next time. So, the Walt Disney World wait times for the third week of October possess rare significance.
How were the crowds in the final days before Disney Genie? Read on to find out…
Disney’s Animal Kingdom
Avatar Flight of Passage just switched to Lightning Lane. So, it won’t participate in Disney Genie+, the paid version of what we once called FastPass.
Instead, the only people who can skip the line here have paid $10-$15 to do so. That won’t impact the lines until next week’s article, though.
For the final days without Lightning Lane, Avatar Flight of Passage averaged a 60-minute wait. That’s down 23 minutes from last time!
Would you rather stand in line for 60 minutes or skip to the front for $12.50? That’s the current debate at Walt Disney World.
Here are the other Animal Kingdom attractions compared to last time:
- Na’vi River Journey – 46 minutes, up 1 minute
- Kilimanjaro Safaris – 23 minutes, down 9
- Expedition Everest – 18 minutes, down 18
- Kali River Rapids – 12 minutes, down 2
- DINOSAUR – 11 minutes, down 9
- It’s Tough to Be a Bug! – 10 minutes, down 6
- TriceraTop Spin – 9 minutes, down 2
The average Animal Kingdom attraction required a wait in line of 23 minutes, down 12 minutes.
Another topic of conversation here involves Expedition Everest. Disney currently offers this ride as a Lightning Lane entrant.
Why would anyone pay $7 to skip the line for something with an 18-minute average wait?
Disney’s Hollywood Studios
This park remains the most challenging to evaluate. The standby queue option for Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance remains new.
That ride averaged a 107-minute wait, down 18 minutes from the previous week. It costs $15 to skip the line, which had the odd impact of crashing standby on opening day.
Rise of the Resistance went down for repairs. When it came up again, so many people used Lightning Lane that Disney shut down the standard line.
We’ll track whether that unfortunate trend continues. Either way, 107 minutes in line is much better than I would have thought.
So, I hope the standby queue remains an option.
Here are the other attractions at Hollywood Studios:
- Slinky Dog Dash – 68 minutes, down 33 minutes
- Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway – 57 minutes, down 9
- Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run – 52 minutes, down 13
- Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith – 51 minutes, down 18
- Toy Story Mania! – 45 minutes, down 4
- Twilight Zone Tower of Terror – 41 minutes, down 21
- Alien Swirling Saucers – 32 minutes, down 8
- Star Tours – The Adventures Continue! – 18 minutes, down 5
- Lightning McQueen’s Racing Academy – 11 minutes, down 4
- Muppet*Vision 3D – 10 minutes, down 2
The paid attractions here are Rise of the Resistance and Slinky Dog Dash. Both of them have sold out multiple times so far.
For this reason, their wait times will be fascinating to track next week.
Overall, Hollywood Studios attractions shared an average wait of 42 minutes, down nine minutes from last time.
That’s still on the high side for this park. The uncomfortable part of the conversation nobody wants to acknowledge is that Disney Genie may help a lot.
Hollywood Studios needs to do something to get its lines under control. Star Wars demand remains mountainous.
My prediction right now is that Disney Genie and Lightning will impact EPCOT the least. This is because this park already features smaller crowds for attractions.
To wit, the ride with the longest wait this past week was Frozen Ever After, with a 59-minute wait.
That’s the same as last time, although it’s also higher than usual. Meanwhile, Test Track slid to 43 minutes, down 12 from the previous article.
Animal Kingdom and EPCOT generally have that strange divide between the E-ticket attractions and the other rides.
Guests may pay to play at Avatar Flight of Passage, but I don’t envision Disney Genie doing much either way with EPCOT’s rides.
After all, one of the Lightning Lane options, Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure, lacks standby queues. So, Frozen Ever After is the only one that the paid service could affect.
Here are the other wait times:
- Soarin’ – 25 minutes, down 12
- Mission: SPACE – 16 minutes, up 3
- The Seas with Nemo & Friends – 13 minutes, down 5
- Spaceship Earth – 12 minutes, down 5
- Turtle Talk with Crush – 10 minutes, up 1
- Gran Fiesta Tour Starring the Three Caballeros – 9 minutes, down 6
- Living with the Land – 8 minutes, down 8
- Journey into Imagination with Figment – 7 minutes, down 1
The average EPCOT required a 20-minute wait, down five minutes from last time.
With an average wait that low, Disney Genie can’t do much to improve efficiency. It’ll help some, but there’s a point of diminishing returns.
Magic Kingdom Discussion
The only Lightning Lane options here are Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, which could justify the price, and Space Mountain, which…I just don’t get.
I would suspect that 90 percent of the people reading this have ridden Space Mountain at some point. Would you pay $10 to do it again during your next visit?
Well, that’s something we’ll consider once we have data.
For now, I can tell you that Seven Dwarfs Mine Train required a wait of 70 minutes, down 8 minutes from the previous article.
Skipping ahead, Space Mountain came with a 38-minute wait, a significant drop from 55 minutes previously.
If your choices are, let’s say, 30 minutes in line or paying $10, just wait. It’s Space Mountain. Sure, the ride’s iconic, but you know the deal about it.
Other Magic Kingdom Wait Times
Here are the other Magic Kingdom waits:
- Jungle Cruise – 66 minutes, down 11
- Peter Pan’s Flight – 60 minutes, no change
- Splash Mountain – 48 minutes, down 22
- Haunted Mansion – 47 minutes, down 15
- Pirates of the Caribbean – 40 minutes, down 8
- Astro Orbiter – 35 minutes, down 5
- The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh – 34 minutes, down 4
- Big Thunder Mountain Railroad – 33 minutes, down 8
- Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin – 33 minutes, down 7
- It’s a Small World – 33 minutes, down 8
- Under the Sea ~ Journey of the Little Mermaid – 27 minutes, down 7
- The Magic Carpets of Aladdin – 22 minutes, down 5
- Dumbo the Flying Elephant – 20 minutes, down 8
- Tomorrow Transit Authority PeopleMover – 20 minutes, down 2
- The Barnstormer – 18 minutes, down 12
- Prince Charming Regal Carrousel – 16 minutes, down 3
- Tomorrowland Speedway – 16 minutes, down 6
- Mad Tea Party – 14 minutes, down 4
- Monsters, Inc. Laugh Floor – 13 minutes, down 7
- Walt Disney’s Carousel of Progress – 5 minutes, down 1
- Country Bear Jamboree – 4 minutes, down 2
The average Magic Kingdom attraction came with a wait of 32 minutes, down nine from last time.
So, here’s our baseline as we await the impact of Disney Genie, Disney Genie+, and Lightning Lane.