Please note: Updates with answers to my questions from a Walt Disney World spokesperson are below. I’ve added a few strategy ideas too.
There’s some magic happening behind the scenes at Walt Disney World’s new MyMagic+ and Fastpass+ service. A few weeks ago Disney Park’s chair Tom Staggs promised us changes were coming, and now they’ve delivered.
Starting Monday, after you have used your initial three FastPass+, you will be permitted to select an additional Fastpass+ via the kiosks located in the parks. Then, after you’ve used that one, you’ll be able to choose another, and so on until you run out of time or the park runs out of Fastpasses (most likely the latter at EPCOT, btw. It only has 8 FP attractions).
Disney has also turned on the ability to select and use additional Fastpass+ when you park hop as well.
I have a few questions about these options and I’ve reached out to Disney for the answers. Here they are…
1a. Do you have to use your first three Fastpass+ entitlements before you can park hop?
Answer: Currently, Yes.
1b. If not, do you lose your Fastpass+ in the originating park if you do park hop. For instance, if you have two morning FP reserved and one late night FP, can you park hop in the middle and use FP at the second gate?
Answer: You must redeem or pass the arrival window of all three Fastpass+ entitlements before you are eligible for the next Fastpass+ selection.
2. How does this work in parks with tiered offerings. Assuming, a FP+ for Test Track is available can I reserve it after I’ve already used one FP for Test Track in my original three entitlements? (it would have to be a real slow day at EPCOT for this scenario to be true, but it’s good to know).
Answer: After you have redeemed or passed the arrival window of all three Fastpass+ entitlements, you can select a Fastpass+ for an attraction or show you have previously selected the same day, if they are available, of course. This means that at Epcot and Disney’s Hollywood Studios, you will be able to make additional selections from any available experience in either experience group.
For now this change is only available via the in park kiosks. But a Disney World spokeswoman says that they still in test mode and are working to make it available via the My Disney Experience app.
A few strategy ideas below the jump:
Park hopping is now available, but you’ll have to craft your Fastpass+ selections based on the information above. According to the answer to question #1 above, you have to use all three entitlements first, before you can Park Hop. Therefore, it will make the most sense to front-load your Fastpass+ selections with morning selections at your first park of the day.
If you do decide to park hop on the fly, stop at a kiosk and change your remaining Fastpass+ to any attraction with an available earlier time.
If you want to leave early for your next park, that’s okay. But remember you won’t be able to book your next Fastpass+ until the arrival window for your last Fastpass+ at the previous park closes. Still, since traveling via bus or monorail can sometimes take 30-40 minutes, most of that window will be eaten up by transportation time.
In general, you’ll want to choose attractions that need Fastpass+ even early in the day. E-ticket attractions make the most sense, but so do popular meet and greets, and attractions with a low capacity (aka spinners, but not Dumbo). Attractions that can absorb large volumes of people (Pirates, Haunted Mansion, Maelstrom, etc) should be avoided for Fastpass+. Hit those rides either early in the day between your Fastpass+ arrival times or very late at night, after you return from Park hopping, for instance.
If you want to use one of the three Fastpass+ entitlements for a late night activity (fireworks or nighttime parade viewing), it sounds like you’re out of luck. One suggestion for Disney, would be to exempt any FP+ within 2 hours of park closing from the ‘use them all’ rule. I’m sure they’re trying to figure something out, otherwise very few people will book the night time FP and those who do, and don’t know about the extra FP option, will feel cheated. Of course, they can always change their FP+ on the fly while in the park and select an earlier timeslot on a different attraction.
Finally, it will be a good idea to mark on your map where all the Fastpass+ Kiosks are in the park. If you are park hopping that will have to be your first stop to sign up for the next available Fastpass+.
Please add any strategy ideas of your own in the comments below.