One reason why lots of people visit Disneyland several times each year is that it offers them a magical experience.
Not only are they after the exciting rides and attractions, but they’re also after the experience this magical place offers.
Unfortunately, that also means that you’ll be competing with tons of people in lines waiting for their turn to get on the rides and attractions.
This is something most people dread whenever they visit Disneyland.
Since vacations to Disneyland are popular for good reasons, you have no choice but to wait. Or, if you can afford to spare some extra budget, skip the lines using various methods.
Let’s have a look at what those methods are below:
Honestly, there’s only one guaranteed way to skip the lines in Disneyland. This is none other than through the use of VIP tours.
They’re somewhat similar to the Lightning Lane, except they allow you to skip the lines on all shows, rides, or attractions with no restrictions.
This means you can use them on virtually anything you like. However, they don’t come cheap, costing around $425 to $625 per hour!
They also have a bunch of prerequisites and don’t even include park admission in the package.
Luckily, there are still a few other ways that you use to skip lines somehow or shorten your wait times. However, they will require a bit more input on your end.
VIP tours aren’t cheap, though they will allow you to skip lines on any ride, show, or attraction in Disneyland. They’re Lightning Lanes without the restrictions.
5 Creative Ways To Skip the Lines at Disneyland
Since paying for VIP tours is out of reach for most Disneyland visitors, we will exempt that from this list. Besides, it’s not even a creative method, as all you have to do is pay for the fees, and you’re all set.
That said, you only need to know that VIP tours allow you to skip lines on any rides, attractions, or shows, the same as the Lightning Lane.
The difference, however, is that VIP tours don’t have any restrictions whatsoever. So they’re a guaranteed means of skipping lines throughout the parks.
Of course, the caveat is that they cost a lot of money, and you will be charged hourly. So it’s not ideal for everyone, especially if you visit Disneyland on a budget.
With that out of the way, here are the five creative ways that will allow you to skip the lines, or at least shorten your wait times, at Disneyland:
1. Arrive Early To Rope Drop
If there’s one straightforward way to skip lines or shorten wait times in Disneyland, that would be to rope drop.
If you haven’t heard of the term before, it simply means to arrive early enough at a park several minutes before it officially opens.
During this time, you can expect much smaller crowds since most guests won’t be able to wake up early. This is something you’d want to take advantage of.
The neat part is that crew members will allow people to enter a few minutes before the official opening hours.
This allows you to enjoy as many rides and attractions as possible without dealing with massive crowds of guests.
Ideally, you’d want to arrive at least 45 minutes before the official opening hours to rope drop.
However, if you visit during busier days, especially peak seasons, at least an hour is recommended to make the most of your time.
2. Use Disney Genie+
Disney Genie+ is an app-based service that lets you make a reservation on several rides and attractions through your phone. You can use this to your advantage if you want to enjoy a ride or attraction without having to wait in long lines.
The service isn’t free, but it only costs roughly $20 per day, which isn’t that expensive. With Disney Genie+, you can book up to 19 rides throughout the parks.
The service works like the Lightning Lane, where you can enter a ride or attraction via the Lightning Lane queue. What’s worth noting is that Genie+ doesn’t let you skip lines entirely.
Instead, it will significantly shorten your wait times, allowing you to get inside most attractions in under 15 minutes or so on average. This is much better than waiting around an hour or even more during busier days.
Another important thing to remember is that Disney Genie+ only allows you to book one attraction at a time, and you’re limited to one booking per attraction every day.
3. Take Advantage of Your On-Property Hotel Privileges
Since August 2022, Disneyland has restored the early entry privileges previously granted to all on-property hotel guests.
This means that if you stay in one of the three hotels owned by Disney, you’ll be able to rope drop even earlier than most guests!
However, unlike Extra Magic Hour and Magic Morning, this early entry method allows you to enter the parks 30 minutes before the official opening hours. Of course, not all attractions are open early in the morning, but it should grant you access to the most popular ones.
What makes it even better than rope dropping is that the capacity is limited only to those who stay in Disneyland Hotel, Grand Californian Hotel & Spa, and Paradise Pier Hotel.
This should give you plenty of time to ride at least two or three rides even before the rope droppers arrive.
Ideally, you’d want to go for the most popular attractions to make the most out of them. A few good examples include Space Mountain, Peter Pan, and Alice in Wonderland.
4. Use Paid Lightning Lanes
If you can afford to spend a little more, then paid Lightning Lanes would be perfect. Unfortunately, while Disney Genie+ allows you to cut the lines on most sought-after rides and attractions, some wildly popular ones aren’t part of the system.
This is where the paid Lightning Lane comes in. It allows you to enjoy even shorter waits for a small yet separate fee per ride.
Currently, it’s only limited to three attractions: the Radiator Springs Racers and Web Slingers, Star Wars, and A Spider-Man Adventure. The fee will also vary per attraction, averaging around $10 to $25 (not including tax) per person, depending on the season.
It sure is an extra expense during your trip, but if you value your time and don’t want to wait in long lines to ride these popular attractions, then Lightning Lane is well worth it.
5. Use a Crowd Calendar
The last one might sound like a no-brainer, but it’s something that many guests might not even consider.
The gist of this method is to visit Disneyland when there’s less crowd than usual, and a crowd calendar can help you achieve that.
There are times when fewer people visit Disneyland, which you want to take advantage of if you want to enjoy shorter wait times on most rides and attractions.
Of course, you don’t want to depend entirely on crowd calendars, as there will be unexpected occasions that will result in massive crowds.
Sadly, Disney doesn’t often hold announcements for such offers ahead of time, so it’s something to note.
As the “Happiest Place on Earth,” you can’t stop massive crowds from visiting Disneyland during your scheduled vacation.
Instead, you can plan how your vacation should go and how much you’d want to spend waiting in lines.
Hopefully, you’ll be able to make the most out of the abovementioned strategies to reduce your wait times as much as possible.
There will always be unexpected scenarios during your visit, so your best action is to adapt whenever possible. Enjoy!
Frequently Asked Questions
How Do I Pass the Time in Long Lines?
Having to wait in long lines can be tiring and boring. Luckily, you can use a few ways to pass the time.
These could include watching videos on your smartphone, taking pictures, eating and drinking snacks, and looking for Hidden Mickeys throughout the park.
How Much Should I Have To Pay for Lightning Lanes?
Individual Lightning Lanes will cost you around $10 to $25 plus taxes per person per ride. However, the price can vary depending on the season and the ride.
Although costing you a few extra dollars, Lightning Lanes save several minutes in lines if you want to get on a certain ride or attraction. However, you can only use Lightning Lanes up to 2 attractions per day.
The good news is that you don’t need to pay for the Disney Genie+ service to avail yourself of individual Lightning Lanes.