Let’s Talk Disney Genie+ Options This Summer
MickeyBlog has already published several Disney Genie+ guides to date.
Unfortunately, Disney keeps changing the rules on this program, which makes our strategies something of a moving target.
Since Disney just updated the system yet again – and hopefully for the last time for a while – we need to update.
So, let’s talk Disney Genie+ selections…again.
Disney’s Animal Kingdom
We should begin by discussing the modified Disney Genie+ rules. First, Disney only guarantees “two or three” attractions per park day.
You can still theoretically book up to eight if everything goes your way, which it will at Animal Kingdom and EPCOT.
The parks are less crowded at these places. Also, they have a strange haves/have-nots phenomenon wherein some attractions rarely have long lines.
At Animal Kingdom, your two primary targets are no-brainers. The first one is Na’vi River Journey.
I realize that not everyone adores this attraction the way that I do.
Still, if you want to ride it, your options are a Disney Genie+ reservation or standing in line for 75 minutes. Why would you do the latter if you don’t love the ride?
Thematically, the attraction that matters the most at Animal Kingdom is Kilimanjaro Safaris. And the wait times for this often exceed an hour during the summer.
So, your strategy is evident here. In fact, the most challenging decision you’ll face is which of these two to target first.
I loooove Kilimanjaro Safaris first thing in the morning since some of the animals are just waking up to play.
Conversely, suppose you wait until you’ve ridden something else to book Na’vi River Journey. In that case, it might be booked until late in the afternoon.
That strategy effectively bottlenecks your Disney Genie+ reservations. It’s a tough call.
Your third option here, at least during the summer, is obvious. It’s Kali River Rapids, whose lines grow more aggressive as the temperature increases.
If you want a wet ride experience, you’ll want to schedule a Disney Genie+ reservation here.
After that, your subsequent choices – if you’re lucky enough to book more than three – are (in order) Expedition Everest, DINOSAUR, and Finding Nemo: The Big Blue… and Beyond!
Disney’s Hollywood Studios
This is the “take what you can get” park at Walt Disney World.
Beggars can’t be choosers at Hollywood Studios, and, yes, that statement sadly applies to Disney Genie+ purchasers.
You should be ready to book just before 7 a.m. When your Disney Genie+ reservation window opens, you should try to grab what you can.
Here are the options, which I’ve ranked on a 10-point scale:
- Alien Swirling Saucers (3 out of 10)
- Beauty and the Beast Live on Stage (2 out of 10)
- Disney Junior Play & Dance! (1 out of 10)
- For the First Time in Forever: A Frozen Sing-Along Celebration (2 out of 10)
- Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular (1 out of 10)
- Meet Olaf at Celebrity Spotlight (3 out of 10)
- Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway (8 out of 10)
- Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run (9 out of 10)
- Muppet*Vision 3D (1 out of 10)
- Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith (8 out of 10)
- Slinky Dog Dash (10 out of 10)
- Star Tours – The Adventures Continue (3 out of 10)
- The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror (10 out of 10)
- Toy Story Mania! (7 out of 10)
Based on this information, you should draw this conclusion. The top two attractions to target are Slinky Dog Dash and Twilight Zone Tower of Terror.
The wait on each of these attractions has averaged 80+ minutes recently. So, you’ll save oodles of time by booking them.
However, some other outstanding options could show earlier availability. For example, Runaway Railway and Smugglers Run are also solid attractions to target.
Realistically, if you can book any three of these attractions, you’ve done well.
Most of the rides at Hollywood Studios are exemplary, though. So you may find that you make it up in volume here, so to speak.
Okay, this one is SIMPLE! Let’s presume you’ll face a hard limit of three Disney Genie+ selections at the park.
When 7 a.m. rolls around, you’ll prioritize two attractions. Without question, the first one should be Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure.
Until Memorial Day, guests paid $15 to ride this attraction alone.
Now, you can schedule a reservation as part of the Disney Genie+ system. Better yet, you’ll get other attractions as a bonus!
Speaking of which, once you schedule Ratatouille, your next target should be Frozen Ever After.
I presume that you’ve already ridden by now. However, it’s still terrific. Also, its wait times are usually the longest or second-longest at the park…along with Ratatouille.
So, if everything breaks right for you, your Disney Genie+ purchase will allow you to skip the most extended waits at EPCOT.
As for your third choice, you really only have two options now. Those are Soarin’ Around the World and Test Track.
Definitely target Test Track first, as its wait is often 30+ percent longer.
If you can book four or more, Soarin’ comes next, followed by Mission: SPACE and the Anna and Elsa character greeting.
You really don’t need a Disney Genie+ reservation for the other attractions here…but book as many as you can anyway! You’ve paid for them all!
I’ll use the Hollywood Studios approach with Magic Kingdom. Here are attractions you should target, graded on a 10-point scale.
- Big Thunder Mountain Railroad (7 out of 10)
- Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin (4 out of 10)
- Haunted Mansion (8 out of 10)
- Jungle Cruise (10 out of 10)
- Peter Pan’s Flight (9 out of 10)
- Pirates of the Caribbean (8 out of 10)
- Space Mountain (7 out of 10)
- Splash Mountain (10 out of 10)
My grading on these combines average wait times with ride quality. At Magic Kingdom, several iconic attractions participate in Disney Genie+.
So, you can pick and choose which ones are your favorites from this list.
However, you should know that Jungle Cruise and Splash Mountain have had the longest lines recently.
Peter Pan’s Flight isn’t that far behind them, and Space Mountain also usually requires a wait of 50+ minutes.
If you want to maximize the advantage of Disney Genie+, you should probably prioritize these attractions.
Personally, I pick the ones I like the best, though. So my priorities would be Peter Pan’s Flight, Haunted Mansion, and then Splash Mountain later in the day.
However, there’s no “one size fits all” suggestion at Magic Kingdom. Instead, you’ll instinctively know what works best for your traveling party.
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Feature Photo: Disney