Friday Five: Review of 5 non-ride FastPass selections

 

With the addition of FastPass+ in Disney World, you have many choices each day to choose either rides, live shows, or character meet  greets. Having been to Disney many times, we took a little detour from our normal path for FastPass and tried some new live shows/non-ride FastPasses. Some of them proved to be very worthwhile and others were a complete waste!

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Our view from the FastPass+ area for Illuminations

1. IllumiNations Preferred Viewing area: This was a very worthy use of a FastPass. Full disclosure: I don’t like Soarin’ (too much for my eyes to take in)  and my husband has seen it enough times that he as ok skipping it. We also ride Test Track single rider instead of using a FastPass or doing rider switch. Once our daughter gets older, we’ll need to change that strategy a bit, but for now, it was perfect! This may be a great addition to a 2nd Epcot day or as a 4th FastPass for those that are savvy and complete their first 3 passes early in the day. The FastPass location is right at the entrance of World Showcase, so it’s a quick exist after the show is over to be first to head to the monorail or buses. We arrived well into the FastPass window and didn’t have an issue finding a perfect spot for all of us to see (including our 2 year old who was comfortable in her stroller). Big thumbs up from all of us!

2. Fantasmic: This one gets a big thumbs down for me! It was our 4th FastPass after using our first 3 before noon. Our Hollywood Studios plan is always to arrive before park open and accomplish all of the big stuff early in the day, so by 11:30 am our scheduled FastPasses were done. We took a nice long break after lunch for napping and swimming and headed back to DHS shortly before the Fantasmic show. Much to our surprise, the FastPass section was not only full, but was full of general admission guests as well. For me, the whole point of the FastPass was to not arrive so far in advance of the show so I didn’t have to entertain an antsy 2 year old for as long. The section is well off to the side. While no view in the show is bad, it’s not the best. If you want great seats for Fantasmic, book the dining package at one of the 3 restaurants available. Two thumbs down on this one!

3. Main Street Electrical Parade: This is another WIN for us! Another full disclosure: we had three Magic Kingdom

Our amazing view from the FastPass viewing area of MSEP!

Our amazing view from the FastPass viewing area of MSEP!

days and the first one was the lowest crowds I’ve ever encountered so we accomplished almost everything we wanted to do during our entire stay in a single day. That freed up a FastPass later in the week for Main Street Electrical Parade. I only booked it 1-2 days in advance for the first parade (showing how low the overall crowds were during our stay). The location was perfect: in the hub at the flagpole near the entrance of Magic Kingdom. You’ll be the first to leave or follow the parade back into the park if you want to stake your claim on a spot for Wishes! We arrived later than we would have linked but still found a spot right behind the folks that arrived early enough to find a seat on the curb. I was pleasantly pleased to see how few people were there. I wasn’t shoulder to shoulder to anyone else and got to lean comfortably against the railing while we waited for the parade to start.Another two thumbs up!

4. For the First Time in Forever: Frozen Sing-Along: This one gets mixed reviews from me. It was nice to have a guaranteed seat in the theater (something that is definitely helpful during busy times). We arrived about 10 minutes into the FastPass window and were surprised to see that they let in all of the general public before the window closed so we were stuck off the to side. I would have appreciated a bit more lead time to let those with FastPasses into the show first. Again, with a 2 year old in tow, I don’t want to have to entertain her for longer than I need to (over the course of 7 park days, the same books only work for so long!). The show itself was great. The location is moving during Frozen Summer Fun but the theater it was in seemed like the perfect size for the time of year.

5. Voyage of the Little Mermaid: One more for Hollywood Studios (it’s short on rides, so we tried lots of shows). I’m not big on the thrill rides of in Hollywood Studios…free falling, going upside down, and simulator rides….yuck. The show itself is worth seeing, but not worth the FastPass. Once you get through the line, you are all lead into one room and then it’s a free for all to get seats. Seating is no battle and all of the seats are good ones. Again, not worth a FastPass in my opinion. The show is cute for those that enjoy Ariel and the Little Mermaid and a great diversion with the “big kids” are off on Tower of Terror or Rock n Roller Coaster.

A free gift for your Disney vacation! The amazing and exciting Minnie Box! (subject to minimum vacation package)

A free gift for your Disney vacation! The amazing and exciting Minnie Box! (subject to minimum vacation package)

Ready to get started planning your Disney World vacation? Please contact me at any time for a free quote. The benefits to using an authorized Disney vacation planner include saving time before and during your vacation with itinerary planning which can help save you hours of standing in line each day. Plus you won’t have to watch for available discounts, research resorts, wake up early for dining reservations, or stay up late for FastPasses. The best part about using a travel planner instead of planning yourself? It’s totally FREE! Plus I’ll take away some of the stress and confusion of planning a Disney vacation (especially if it’s your first one!)It’s also a worry free opportunity. I’ll walk through through all of the steps to the process with a few little insider tips along the way! If you already have your vacation planned and are interested in transferring your vacation, ask me how!

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