Visiting Disney World is a really magical experience. But there are still some things that guests need to know before visiting an attraction.
1. The number of people in their group.
Please know the number of people in your group. This is so incredibly helpful for the cast member who will group you into a row. When they ask for the number in your party, it is essential that you tell them the TOTAL number in your party. Otherwise you will likely be separated from the rest of your group. It is not helpful at all to say 2, 2, 2, 2 instead of 8. This only makes things more complicated for the cast members as they might have to rearrange their whole grouping when they realize that your family is actually together. Surprisingly, we will not put all 8 of you in one row together if you say 8. We do know that 8 grown adults will need 4 rows.
2. How to pull down and lift up on their lap bars/yellow strap.
Please listen for cast member instructions, particularly the words that they are saying. The correct way in which to pull down your lap bar is to reach up and pull it down so that it rests lightly against your legs. The correct way in which to lift up on it is to gently pull up so that you ensure that it is locked in place. The following are incorrect ways in which to respond to a cast member's request to "pull up on your lap bar."
1. Ignore the request. 2. Slide across the seat. 3. Take a selfie 4. Push down on the lap bar. 5. Move your backpack from the seat to the floor 6. Frantically place an oversized backpack in the small pouch 7. Lifting your hands up in the air.
3. How Fastpasses work.
Fastpasses are free for all guests. But you do have to book them ahead of time. You can book three first and then one at a time once you have used all three initial Fastpasses. You must return at the time that you signed up for your Fastpass.
4. How to scan a Fastpass.
The correct way to scan a Fastpass is to place your card or magic band right in the center of the touchpoint and wait for it to turn green. The following are incorrect ways in which to scan your Fastpass.
1. Hovering your card in space in front of the touchpoint. 2. Using your finger to scan. 3. Showing your phone instead of scanning your ticket. 4. Returning at the incorrect time of your Fastpass. 5. Scanning when you don't have a Fastpass. 6. Trying to scan the barcode on your card rather than placing the card in the center of the touchpoint. 7. Only having one Fastpass for a group of more than one. 8. Having one person hold all 10 tickets in your group rather than having each person in your group scan their own ticket. 9. Scanning your Fitbit rather than your magic band.
5. How to read the wait time.
Every attraction lists the wait time directly over the entrance to the attraction. The wait time is always listed in minutes rather than hours. It is conveniently located so that guests entering the line will know the best approximation for how long they will be waiting. The wait time is not at all correlated to the length of the actual queue. Instead it's determined by many factors such as the number of vehicles on the attraction at the time, the number of Fastpasses currently being scanned and the number of other attractions currently having technical difficulties across the park. Therefore, even if there are only a handful of guests in the line, depending on these factors, you could still be waiting 30 or more minutes in line at a standstill in order to accomodate the guests in the Fastpass queue that have priority.
6. How to ensure their own child's safety.
Many attractions have height restrictions in order to ensure all guest's safety when experiencing the ride. These height restrictions are not a suggestion, nor can guests shorter than the requirement experience the ride with a supervising adult. There are height sticks out in front of the entrance to every attraction and some within the queue as well. Cast members should check your child's height before you enter if your child looks close to the requirement, however, it is ultimately your responsibility to make sure your child is checked before you get to the load area where you may be turned away if your child is too short.
But remember, child swap is always an option.
7. DAS is not a Fastpass.
Guests may sign up for DAS (Disability Access Service) at guest relations if they feel that they have a health concern that prevents them from waiting in the normal queue during their visit. This is a special accommodation that is added to your ticket or magic band that allows you to go to an attraction and sign up for a return time. This return time allows you to "virtually" wait in line for the course of the wait time, holding your place in the line and allowing you to do other things in the park, then return after the wait time and enter the attraction through the Fastpass entrance.
DAS is not a Fastpass on its own. You still must wait the wait time and then return through Fastpass. Remember DAS is an accommodation for you. It is unfair to other guests to allow guests with DAS to simply skip the line and directly enter Fastpass when they arrive.
8. We do not know when the ride will reopen.
If the ride is closed for any reason (aside from planned refurbishments) cast members are not allowed to say when the ride will reopen. So when guests ask when will the ride reopen after a downtime for technical difficulties or weather unfortunately the answer will ALWAYS be "we do not know." Things happen. If cast members say it should reopen in the next 30 min and then some other difficulty arises, guests will be even more frustrated, and rightly so. The best way to know when the ride will reopen is by frequently checking the MyDisneyExperience app and looking for a wait time posted.
P.S. Don't worry, your Fastpasses will still be good later when the ride reopens.
Hopefully these hints will help you make the most out of your next Walt Disney World visit!