What is a FastPass?
A FastPass is a reservation for a ride that allows you to skip the majority of the queue itself. Technically, its a virtual queue. Think of it like a restaurant reservation, but instead of one specific arrival time, you have a 1 hour window to arrive. Rides will have wait times posted for standby riders and Fastpass riders. There can be a vast difference in wait times, especially for the most popular rides.
How to Make FastPass Reservations
If you are staying at a Disney World resort, you can book your FastPass reservations up to 60 days in advance of your arrival. If you have booked tickets and are staying off property, you can book 30 days in advance. FastPass reservations can be made on the My Disney Experience mobile app or online at disneyworld.disney.go.com. You can select rides for each day that you plan to be at the park.
How many FastPasses do I get?
You will receive three FastPasses for each day you have park tickets. These must all be used at the same park, so even if you are planning to park hop, all your FastPasses must be at the same park. After your first 3 FastPasses are used, you can get a fourth (see below).
How do I maximize my FastPasses?
Get FastPasses for the rides you consider an absolute must do for you and your crew. On our first trip with a toddler, these were rides like The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh and Peter Pan’s Flight. If you have an older group going, the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train ride, Space Mountain, and Big Thunder Mountain might be more the speed that you really want to use your FastPass on. Check out the posts on best rides for toddlers and school aged kids at Magic Kingdom and the other parks to get a better idea of how to spend your valuable FastPasses.
You can also effectively DOUBLE your FastPasses by using the Rider Switch Service.
How to get a FOURTH FastPass
After you have used your three FastPasses on any given day, you can go to a FastPass kiosk in the park and reserve ONE MORE. The most popular rides may not be available, but you might sneak in an extra ride that you hadn’t even planned on getting to!
There is another other way to get an extra FastPass – but you have to do a little work. Find a paintbrush on Tom Sawyer’s island (when the park opens) and you will get a FastPass to Big Thunder Mountain or Splash Mountain.
Is there a FastPass grace period?
Yes! Disney does not publish an official policy on this topic. However, you may arrive 5 minutes early for any FastPass. You may also arrive up to 15 minutes late. Within this grace period you should be able to ride without issue; Mickey will light up green.
These numbers are based on the experiences of many riders, including our own. However, Disney World can change the rules at anytime. If your experience differs, let us know in the comments!
Also jeep in mind that cast members have some discretion in overriding FastPass. They might let you in earlier or later, especially with a good excuse. But don’t bank on it.
Modifying FastPass reservations
Plans can change and luckily, your FastPass selections can be changed as well. Just use the My Disney Experience mobile app or disneyworld.disney.go.com to adjust times and rides. The closer to the day and time of your actual FastPass, the fewer selections you will have from the standpoint of times and rides. You will get the most ride and time options if you plan as far in advance as possible, but modifying individual rides or days at the last minute can mean the difference between skipping most of a line and wasting a FastPass.
How to FastPass like a boss
Book the moment you can. If you will plan to the parks at opening, plan your Fastpasses for later (after 10 AM). You may be able to get on some of the most popular rides early in the morning. You can start booking FastPasses 60 days in advance of the first day of your trip, plus a ten day grace period to account for the days at the end of your stay, up to 70 days. Also, ride when others are eating and eat when others are riding. If you have a flexible crew, this can maximize your riding.
You can also DOUBLE your FastPasses by using Rider swap (Rider Switch Service).
No one gets on every ride in a day, so set expectations accordingly. Have fun and happy planning!