There is a lot of confusion surrounding the announcement of the brand new Disney Genie.
We try to put a positive spin on everything. After all, helping others plan their dream vacations is what we do. And it’s what we enjoy.
But, even I have to admit, this one has been rough, especially if you’ve been going to the Disney Parks and using the free FastPass+. Instead of seeing any positives new additions may bring, all we’re seeing is dollar signs. The very same vacation we booked years ago is going to cost more now. As a fellow Guest, it absolutely stinks.
But, regardless of the negativity surrounds the announcement, Guests will use it. I know that and Disney knows that. So, just like other posts you’ll find on this site, we’re going to put a positive spin wherever we see fit.
Please keep in mind that this post will likely change many times as we learn more about Disney Genie and how it works. If there is an easier way to use it, we will update you.
Here we go…
Disney Genie Is NOT A Standalone App
There are many who have said they won’t be using Disney Genie. And that’s ok. But, in my experience, it’s easier to simply check it out if it’s already there. After all, there is a large portion of the new addition that is FREE (more on that below).
Walt Disney World and Disneyland Will Finally Work On The Same System
Whether or not you liked FastPass+ or MaxPass, you have to admit, they came with a bit of a learning curve. And visiting opposite coasts required learning its own set of rules and lingo.
This is why many Guests ultimately use a Travel Agent, such as myself, to help plan their Disney vacations. Planning is confusing enough without the constant changes. Worst of all, it’s like everyone else is speaking a secret language that you never learned. And who wants to drop that kind of money to be confused on vacation.
But, in theory, once you learn how to use Disney Genie, it will work the same way on both coasts.
New Disney Lingo
- Disney Genie – Free Personalized Itinerary
- Disney Genie+ – Paid Part that enables you to skip lines
- FastPass+ replacement
- Lightning Lane – Physical Line you stand in
- They are marked with their own signage
There Are Three Parts To Disney Genie…Including One That’s Free
Disney has been promoting the Disney Genie since the 2019 D23 Expo. And from what I can tell, everything they talked about is included in the Free Version.
At the time, they also compared it to mobile food ordering, Play Disney Parks, and online check-in. These are all FREE additions to the My Disney Experience App, created to enhance your vacation.
Disney Genie – The Free Part
Simply speaking, Disney Genie is a personalized itinerary.
Disney Genie will recommend a plan based on what you tell it what you want to do. Whether that means you’re focusing your day around specific attractions or you want to do everything princess related, the App will recommend what you should do and the best time to do it.
And since it’s updated in real time, your recommendations may change, depending on wait times and availability.
Do I recommend this for first time Disney travelers?
Absolutely! Coming up with a strategy for hitting up as many attractions as you can on your first trip is the part everyone struggles with. So, it’s good to have a helping hand. And it’s FREE, so if you don’t like it or don’t find it helpful, you can simply stop using it and you haven’t wasted any money.
Disney Genie+ and Individual Attractions – The Paid Parts
They’re being marketed as a way to enhance your flexibility and convenience in the Park. In reality, this is the next evolution of Fastpass+ and MaxPass. This means, if you want to spend less time waiting in line, you’re now going to have to pay for that convenience.
Disney Genie+ Details
- Walt Disney World
- Guests will pay $15 per person (ages 3+) per day.
- Disney Resort Guests may start booking Disney Genie+ Attractions at 7AM
- All other Guests must wait until the Park opens to begin booking
- You are allowed to hold 1 ride reservation at a time (doesn’t include Individual Attractions)
- You can’t reserve the same attraction more than one time per day
- Return times have a one hour window. To ride, head to the Lightning Lane entrances (old FastPass+ entrances).
- If you have Park Hopper Tickets, Disney Genie+ will work across all parks. You pay per day, not per Park.
- Included with your purchase is Disney Parks-themed auto experiences and photos using augmented reality lenses.
- Disneyland’s version will NOT be opening the same time as Walt Disney World. An opening date for Disneyland will be announced at a later date.
- The Disney Genie+ add-on will work exactly the same as Walt Disney’s World’s version, with a couple slight variations.
- Guests will pay $20 per person (ages 3+) per day.
- Included with your purchase is Disney Parks-themed auto experiences and unlimited Disney PhotoPass downloads from your day.
Helpful Tips For Genie+
- Genie+ works like the old paper FastPass system. The return time you get is based on next time available.
- You’re not able to modify selections. You must cancel and rebook.
- Disney Genie+ can be added to a Vacation Package or Ticket purchases made ahead of time.
- Best for Guests who know they want to use it every day of their trip.
- If you’re planning a 7 day trip with 4 Park Days, you will automatically be charged $15 x the number of Guests (ages 3+) in your Party x 4 Park Days in your Package. You’re unable to choose certain Park days to use it in.
- Have a package, but only want to use it on certain days? Don’t buy it ahead of time. Purchase a one day Genie+ on your Disney App the day you’re entering the Park you intend on using it in.
- Best for Guests who know they want to use it every day of their trip.
- If you don’t like the times that are showing up for Lightning Lanes, refresh refresh refresh… Return times can jump around, showing you an earlier window.
- When you use Lightning Lane, there are 2 touch points. The 1st is where you enter the line, and the 2nd is where the Lightning Lane line and the Standby line merge. Once you tap your MagicBand at the 2nd touchpoint, you can book another attraction.
- The 120 Minute Rule! – Say it’s morning and you want to reserve Slinky Dog Dash. But, the next return time isn’t until later in the evening. Disney says you can’t hold more than 1 ride at a time, so you won’t be able to book anything else until you ride Slinky Dog Dash, right? Well, not quite… After 120 minutes, you’re able to book another attractions without impacting your reservation later on in the day.
Individual Attraction Selections
These attractions are purchased a la carte. They run independently from the Genie+ system.
Individual Attraction Lightning Lane Details
- Prices will vary by day, attraction, and Park.
- You may book up to 2 Individual Attractions per day
- These selections include high demand attractions that are not included in Disney Genie+
- Booking window opens at 7am.
- The 120 minute rule does not apply to these attractions.
- These attractions can sell out. Consider booking Rise of the Resistance, in Hollywood Studios, and Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure, in EPCOT early. Others will be available longer, so you have more time to decide whether or not it’s worth the money based on wait times.
- You are limited to 2 of these attractions per day, not per Park. Have a Park Hopper? Consider booking in different Parks.
- Your Individual Lightning Lane Attraction break down during your return time? You don’t lose your reservation. A special pass will be added to your account to return to that attraction any time by the end of the day.
- Since these attractions run independently from Genie+, you do not need to purchase Genie+ to purchase Individual Attractions.
Will Virtual Queues Still Exist?
There are currently Virtual Queues for Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure, in EPCOT and Radiator Springs Racers, and WEB SLINGERS: A Spider-Man Adventure, in Disney’s California Adventure.
There are currently no Standby lines for these attractions. If you want to ride, a Virtual Queue or Lightning Lane Reservation will need to be made. However, there is no fee for this.
Do You Have To Purchase Disney Genie+ to Ride Attractions?
No, purchasing Disney Genie+ and Individual Lightning Lane Attractions are completely optional.
If you choose not to purchase it, you’re welcome to wait in the regular attraction queue. The only exception to this is Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure, Radiator Springs Racers, and WEB SLINGERS: A Spider-Man Adventure, which use free Virtual Queues.
Ready to book your vacation?
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