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Guide to Planning Rides at Disney World

Merry-Go-Round At Night Time In Hong King Disney Land

Are you planning a trip to Disney World and wondering how to navigate the rides and attractions? Are you wondering how you can avoid long wait times for popular attractions?

Which rides should one prioritize if one has limited time in the parks? Are there any special tips or strategies for navigating the rides and attractions at Disney World?

With so many options, deciding which rides to prioritize and how to avoid long wait times can be overwhelming.

Consider the above questions to help you plan your perfect Disney World experience.


Disney World is a magical destination for people of all ages, offering a wide range of rides and attractions that can make your visit an unforgettable experience.

However, with so many options, planning your itinerary and navigating the parks efficiently can be overwhelming.

Below are some important tips or strategies for planning your rides at Disney World:

  • Check the height requirements
  • Use the FastPass+ system
  • Research the rides beforehand
  • Arrive early
  • Make a schedule

Planning your rides at Disney World requires some research and preparation, but it can be a fun and rewarding experience.

Using the tips above, you can maximize your time in the parks and create a memorable vacation for you and your family.

To help you make the most of your trip, this guide will provide you with essential tips and strategies for planning your rides at Disney World, so you can avoid long wait times, prioritize your must-rides, and make the most of your time in the parks.

13 Essential Disney World Ride Preparation Tips

Planning a trip to Disney World can be exciting and overwhelming at the same time, but with a little bit of research and preparation, you can ensure that your visit is as enjoyable as possible.

Here are some tips for planning your rides at Disney World:

1. Research the Rides Beforehand

The Loops Of A Scaring Roller Coaster

Before your trip, it is important to research the rides and attractions available at Disney World.

Not only will this help you create a list of must-rides, but it can also help you decide which park(s) you want to visit.

For example, Magic Kingdom has more family-friendly rides, while Epcot has more attractions geared towards adults.

You can also use Disney’s official app or website to see the estimated wait times for each ride in real-time.

2. Use the FastPass+ System

Image Of The Disney Store Near Times Square

Disney’s FastPass+ system is a free service that allows you to reserve a spot in line for select attractions ahead of time.

You can book up to three FastPass+ reservations per day in advance and then book additional FastPass+ reservations one at a time once you have used your initial three.

When you use your FastPass+ reservation, you will be given a one-hour window to return to the ride, during which you can bypass the regular line and go straight to the FastPass+ queue.

Not all rides have FastPass+ available, and some popular rides (such as Seven Dwarfs Mine Train in Magic Kingdom) often have limited availability.

It is also worth noting that Disney recently introduced a new Disney Genie system, which allows guests to make virtual queues for certain attractions instead of FastPass+.

3. Make a Schedule

Planner Plan Schedule Calendar And Reminder Agenda

Making a schedule or planner can help maximize your time at Disney World. It is important to plan for meal times, rest breaks, and time to explore the park in addition to rides.

You can use Disney’s official app or website to see the park hours and showtimes for each day of your trip. Remember that some rides have longer wait times than others, so plan accordingly.

4. Arrive Early

Happy Traveler About To Board

Getting to the park early can help you beat the crowds and get a head start on the most popular rides. Try to arrive at the park at least 30 minutes before it opens.

If you are staying at a Disney World resort, you can take advantage of Extra Magic Hours, which allows guests to enter the park an hour early or stay an hour late on certain days.

5. Use the Single-Rider Line

Tourist Walk Across The Street Towards Disneyland Theme Park

You can consider single-rider attractions. Single-rider lines are a great option if you do not mind riding alone.

The single-rider line is a separate queue for certain attractions that can save you a lot of time if you are traveling alone or do not mind splitting up from your group.

This line is typically much shorter than the regular line, but remember that you may not ride with your group.

These lines are typically shorter than the regular standby lines because they are filled with individuals or smaller groups willing to ride separately.

Single-rider lines are available for some of the most popular rides at Disney World, including Expedition Everest in Disney’s Animal Kingdom and Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster in Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

6. Consider Rider Switch

Mickey And Minnie Mouse Ride In An Open Carriage In The Annual Thanksgiving Day Parade

Rider switch is a system that allows parents with young children to take turns riding certain attractions without waiting in line twice.

To use the rider switch, one parent waits in the regular line while the other parent stays with the child.

When the first parent is finished riding, they can switch places with the second parent, who can ride without waiting in line again. A rider switch is available on most rides with a height requirement.

7. Take Advantage of Park Hopping

Hongkong Disneyland And Parade Show

If you have a park hopper ticket, you can visit multiple parks in one day. This can be a great way to ride more attractions and experience what Disney World offers.

Remember that you will need to factor in travel time between parks, and you may want to prioritize your must-rides at each park to make the most of your time.

8. Check the Height Requirements

Tokens Required Sign At Amusement Park Carnival Ride

Checking height requirements ensures everyone in your group can enjoy the attractions they want to ride. Height requirements are listed on Disney’s official website or mobile app.

Some rides have height requirements as low as 32 inches, while others require riders to be at least 48 inches tall.

Check the height requirements for each attraction before you go, so you can plan accordingly and avoid disappointment.

9. Be Strategic About Timing

Hand Writing Time To Plan Concept With Blue Marker On Transparent Wipe Board

Timing is everything when it comes to minimizing wait times for attractions. If you are willing to be strategic, you can ride some of the most popular rides with shorter wait times.

For example, if you want to ride a popular attraction during a parade or show, you can take advantage of the shorter lines while most guests are distracted elsewhere.

Also, try to arrive at the parks early, so you can get a head start on the crowds. Or consider staying late, as lines may be shorter in the final hour before the park closes.

10. Take Advantage of Extra Magic Hours

Parade At Disney Land Paris With Some Famous Characters

Extra Magic Hours benefit guests staying at a Disney World resort. During Extra Magic Hours, certain parks open early or stay open late, which means fewer guests and shorter wait times for popular attractions.

Check the schedule to see which parks have Extra Magic Hours during your visit.

11. Do Not Forget About Shows and Entertainment

A Model Of Disney Dumbo (Cute Flying Elephant) At The Standee Of Movie Dumbo

While the rides are a major part of the Disney World experience, do not overlook the shows and entertainment offerings.

These shows can provide a nice break from standing in line and be just as entertaining as the rides.

For example, the Festival of the Lion King in Disney’s Animal Kingdom is a live-action show that features acrobatics, singing, and dancing.

In Disney’s Hollywood Studios, the Indiana Jones Stunt Spectacular is a live-action show that showcases exciting stunts and special effects.

12. Consider a VIP Tour

Illuminated Big Wheel With Colorful Fountain In International Drive Area 6

A VIP tour at Disney World is a personalized tour service with a private guide who can help you navigate the parks and bypass lines and provide insider tips and information.

VIP tours can be costly, but they can be a worthwhile investment to maximize your time in the parks and avoid long wait times. A VIP tour is a great option to maximize your time and ride more attractions in less time.

VIP tours come with a personal guide who can take you to the front of the line at select attractions and provide insider knowledge about the parks.

Your tour guide can help you customize your itinerary, provide backstage access to select attractions and even secure prime viewing spots for parades and fireworks shows.

While VIP tours can be expensive, they can be worth it if you want to avoid long lines and see more parks in less time.

They can be booked in advance through the Disney World website or by calling the VIP Tour Services department.

13. Keep an Open Mind

Unforgettable And Thrilling Experience Of A Captain’s Guided Tour In A Vintage Amphibious Car

While having a list of must-rides is great, keeping an open mind and being flexible with your plans are also important. Sometimes the unexpected can be just as fun as the rides you had planned to ride.

If you see a ride or attraction with a shorter wait time, do not be afraid to try it – you may be pleasantly surprised.

And remember, the Disney World experience is about having fun and making memories, so try not to stress too much about sticking to a rigid schedule.

Rides To Prioritize if You Have Limited Time in the Parks

If you have limited time in the parks, it is important to prioritize the rides and attractions that are most important to you.

Here are some popular attractions that are considered must-rides by many visitors:

1. Seven Dwarfs Mine Train

Underground Mine Tunnel

This is a popular roller coaster located in Fantasyland at Magic Kingdom. It tends to have long wait times throughout the day, so it is a good idea to try to ride it early in the morning or with a FastPass+ reservation.

2. Avatar Flight of Passage

The Experience At Clouds Forest, Gardens By The Bay, Singapore

This is an immersive 3D ride located in Pandora – The World of Avatar at Disney’s Animal Kingdom.

It is a highly popular attraction that can have wait times of two or more hours, so it is recommended that you book a FastPass+ reservation as early as possible.

3. Toy Story Mania

Toy Story Mania

This is a popular 3D shooting game in Toy Story Land at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

It is a family-friendly attraction with long wait times, so riding it early in the morning or with a FastPass+ reservation is a good idea.

4. Expedition Everest – Legend of the Forbidden Mountain

People Riding Expedition Everest

This popular roller coaster is located in Asia at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. It is known for its thrilling twists and turns and is a popular ride for thrill-seekers.

5. Soarin’ Around the World

Soarin' Eagle Rollercoaster At Coney Island

This is a popular 4D ride located in The Land pavilion at Epcot. It is a family-friendly attraction that offers breathtaking views of iconic landmarks worldwide.

These are just a few popular attractions worth prioritizing if you have limited time in the parks.

It is important to note that ride popularity and wait times can vary depending on the time of day and season, so it is recommended that you check the park schedule and crowd levels before planning your itinerary.

Planning your rides at Disney World requires some research and preparation, but it can be a fun and rewarding experience.

Using the tips above, you can maximize your time in the parks and create a memorable vacation for you and your family. Do not forget to have fun.


Planning your rides at Disney World can be a fun and exciting process that can make your trip to the park more enjoyable and memorable.

By considering the height requirements, utilizing FastPass+ and single-rider lines, being strategic about timing, taking advantage of Extra Magic Hours, and keeping an open mind, you can create a well-rounded itinerary that caters to your preferences and interests.

Whether you are a first-time visitor or a seasoned Disney fan, following these tips and strategies can help you make the most of your time in the parks and create unforgettable memories that will last a lifetime.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Is the FastPass+ System, and How Can It Help Me Plan My Rides at Disney World?

FastPass+ is a free service provided by Disney World that allows visitors to reserve access to selected rides and attractions ahead of time.

This means you can bypass the regular standby queue and enjoy shorter wait times for popular attractions.

To use the FastPass+ system, you must create an account on the Disney World website and link your park tickets or annual passes.

Then, you can select up to three FastPass+ experiences per day, either online or via the My Disney Experience app.

It is recommended that you book FastPass+ reservations as early as possible, especially for popular attractions with long wait times.

How Can I Make the Most of Extra Magic Hours at Disney World and Which Parks Offer Them?

Extra Magic Hours are additional operating hours available exclusively to guests at Disney World resorts. The guests allow you to enjoy the parks with fewer crowds and shorter lines.

Extra Magic Hours are typically offered in the morning or evening, and the schedule can vary depending on the time of year and the park.

It is important to check the park schedule beforehand to see which parks offer Extra Magic Hours and plan your visit accordingly.

To make the most of Extra Magic Hours, it is recommended that you arrive early or stay late to take advantage of the extra time in the parks.

Can I Bring My Young Children on All the Rides at Disney World, and How Can I Check the Height Requirements for Each Attraction?

Disney World offers a wide range of rides and attractions for visitors of all ages and interests, but not all attractions are suitable for young children.

To ensure your children can safely ride an attraction, checking the height requirements before queuing up is important.

Height requirements are posted outside each attraction, and children must meet the minimum height requirement to ride.

Additionally, some attractions have minimum age requirements, and some may be too intense or scary for young children.

You can find a list of height requirements and other guidelines on the Disney World website or app.

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