The Best Disney Fast Passes for 2019 - Real Mom Recs

The Best Disney Fast Passes for 2019

If you’re trying to figure out the best Disney Fast Passes for a seamless 2019 Disney vacation without waiting in long lines, then pull up a chair and start taking notes!

I truly love helping people plan their ideal Disney vacation. I’ve brainstormed with friends who are 2 years away from booking a trip, and I’ve jumped in to help friends who are leaving in a week and haven’t booked a thing.

The mistake I see again and again that makes me die a little inside is people not using Fast Pass! (Cue horror movie sound effects.)

Almost as bad- when people book Fast Passes, but they chose rides that really don’t warrant it or weren’t the best use of their selections.

Since you’re here, I know you won’t make any of those mistakes!

Disney Fast passes 2019

 

Disney Fast Pass FAQs

Let’s start with some of the questions I hear over and over again about booking Fast Passes.

Do you have to pay extra for Fast Pass?

No, no, and NO! Unlike Universal, Disney includes 3 Fast Passes per day for EVERY ticket. You don’t need to be staying on site and you don’t need to pay extra. And after you use those 3 (or let them expire), you can book more one at a time.

Is it really necessary to book Fast Pass ahead of time?

It not a requirement to schedule ahead of time, and most attractions will have Fast Passes available on the day of. However, if you want the best chance at those extremely popular attractions, you absolutely should book your Fast Passes as soon as you possibly can.

There are a limited number of Fast Passes for each attraction, and the most popular rides do run out of Fast Passes well in advance.

When can I book my Fast Passes?

If you are staying onsite at a Disney resort, you can book your Fast Passes 60 days before the start of your trip (and you can book your entire trip on that day). If you are staying offsite, you can book 30 days in advance. You will need to book each day of your trip one by one, abiding by the 30 day window.

The booking window opens at 7am EST, so sit down at your computer at 6:50 on the day your booking window opens and log on to MyDisneyExperience to book!

What’s the best time of day to schedule my Fast Passes for?

There are two schools of thought on this, and it depends on your touring strategy.

Personally I’m in the rope drop crowd (arriving before the park opens to take advantage of the early morning low crowds). With this strategy, I recommend booking Fast Passes starting at 11am. You can take advantage of the low crowds prior to that time while still having them scheduled early enough in the day to then use a 4th, 5th and 6th Fast Pass after your initial 3.

family in matching Disney shirts meeting Mickey at magic kingdom

How can I get extra Fast Passes?

Once all your pre-booked Fast Passes have been used (or expire), you can book another using the MDX app or at Kiosks located throughout the parks. You may only book one at a time with this method. Once you use your fourth Fast Pass, you can book a 5th.

For 4th Fast Passes and beyond, you can repeat one of the attractions that you already FastPassed and you can choose a different attraction from the Tier One category. Just remember these are subject to availability so it’s not incredibly likely that those will be available. People do change plans and cancel Fast Passes last minute however, so it’s worth checking.

What’s this I hear about “tiers”?

At Epcot, Animal Kingdom, and Hollywood Studios, Fast Passes are selected within a tiered model.

This means you may only select ONE of the two or three most popular attractions in that park. You can then select two of the Tier 2 attractions. My recommendation is to choose your most desired Tier 1 attraction and use Fast Pass for that. You can then prioritize the other Tier 1 attraction to be your first ride of the morning if you arrive at rope drop, or your last ride of the night if you take the late shift (both good times to ride a popular ride without a Fast Pass).

Want to know how I afford to go to Disney every year without going broke? Don’t miss this post that dishes all my secrets on how to save on Disney World!

Best Disney Fast Passes For Each Park

Magic Kingdom (no tiers)

Seven dwarfs Mine Train is the top pick for fastpass at Disney Magic Kingdom
Seven dwarfs mine train: the best Fast pass choice for Magic Kingdom

Top 3 Picks

  1. Seven Dwarfs Mine Train
  2. Space Mountain
  3. Splash Mountain

Other Solid Choices

  1. Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
  2. Peter Pan’s Flight (personally I think it’s overhyped, but the lines get VERY long so if you choose to ride, do it with Fastpass or at rope drop)
  3. Winne the Pooh (slow load times = long lines)
  4. Enchanted Tales with Belle
  5. Meet Mickey and Minnie at Town Square Theater (sadly this Mickey no longer talks)
  6. Pirates of the Caribbean
  7. Buzz Lightyear Spaceranger Spin

Epcot

Spaceship earth at Disney's EPCOT is a fun ride you may want to use tier 2 fast passes on
Inside that giant ball is Spaceship Earth, one of my favorite rides

Tier 1 (choose ONE of these)

  • Frozen Ever After
  • Soarin’ Around the World
  • Test Track

If you have a Frozen fan on your hands, go with that as the lines are longest. Otherwise, choose Test Track. Don’t miss Soarin’- ride it first thing in the morning or last at night, or grab it as a 4th Fast Pass if you’re lucky.

Character spot is Tier 1 but probably not your best use of FastPass.

Illuminations is also a Tier 1 choice but nobody should choose it, there are plenty of spots all around the lake with great views of the show.

Also note-worthy is that Illuminations will be replaced by a new nighttime spectacular show at Epcot sometime in 2019. It remains to be seen whether or not this new show will alter the best choice of Fast Pass, but I will keep this updated if it does!

Tier 2 Solid Choices

The other attractions rarely get long lines so Fast pass should not be necessary.

Animal Kingdom

Everest at Disney's animal kingdom is a good use of fastpass
If you’re brave enough for Everest, you’ll want to ride it with a FP!

Tier One (must choose one)

  • Avatar Flight of Passage- The most sought after Fastpass in WDW. Get one of it you can!
  • Na’vi River Journey (only pick this if you can’t ride Flight of Passage due to height or other restriction!)

Tier Two Solid Choices

Hollywood Studios

Child and mother in front of tower of terror- tier 2 fastpass choice for Hollywood studios
Tower of Terror: A great choice for your Tier 2 FP

The addition of Toy Story Land has completely rearranged the Fast Pass tiers for this park. I imagine that, after the newness wears off, they will restructure the tiers again. For now, they look like this:

Tier One (must choose one)

  • Slinky Dog Dash
  • Alien Swirling Saucers
  • Toy Story Mania

Your best bet is to get a Fast pass for Slinky Dog and try to ride the others standby or with a 4th Fast pass or higher. The wait times for Alien Swirling Saucers have died down recently so should be the most reasonable of the three. Also, the queue for Toy Story Mania is a fun one, which helps if you choose to ride it standby.

Tier Two Solid Choices

  • Rockin’ Roller Coaster
  • Tower of Terror
  • Star Tours

Check out this post for a closer look at the best rides at Hollywood Studios!

Still have Fast pass questions? Leave them in the comments and I’ll do another Fast pass FAQ in my next Disney post.

If you are planning the ultimate family Disney vacation, don’t miss my picks for kids’ favorite Disney resorts and kid’s favorite Disney restaurants!

And don’t forget to follow me on Pinterest:

 

Author

Adoptive mom, biological mom, slacker mom, Disney mom, and above all things a REAL mom. Fan of blogging, sleeping, and pretending not to hear my kids fight.

33 comments

  1. I’ve never used the fastpass system, my last trip to disney world was before they started (soon long i know!!) what kind of strategy do you think is best? we have a tentative schedule of which park we’ll be in each day. do i go day by day? or ride by ride?

    1. I recommend booking one day at a time but instead of starting with day 1, start with your animal kingdom day for flight of passage! There aren’t any others as hard to get as that. Have a wonderful trip!

    1. Kelly, As a rule of thumb, pregnant women are safe to ride anything without a height restriction. Those rides are safe for babies to ride, so they pose minimal risk to a baby in the womb. Flight of Passage has a height restriction of 44 inches so is not considered safe for pregnant women. You can always check with your doctor to see if he or she has different advice though!

  2. Do you have to book all three fast passes in one park? What about your fourth? So if we used 3 in Hollywood studio could we hop back to MK and try for an afternoon FastPass?

    1. Hi Amelia! You do need to book all of your first 3 fast passes in the same park. After that, you can hop to a different park and get whatever is still available as your fourth FP (and fifth and so on). Most likely the very popular rides won’t have any left, but since there are so many rides at MK there should be some that are worth your while. Hope that helps!

  3. Hi. Thanks for all the useful info! I will be visiting first time so ur posts have helped tremendously! I have an 11 year old scared of fast roller coasters, mainly high drops, which rides do you think would be an issue for her?

    1. So glad to be of help to you, Sara! I also have a child who enjoys mild coasters but hates it if they are too intense! Three at WDW came to mind immediately- Expedition Everest (Animal Kingdom), Rockin Roller Coaster (Hollywood Studios), and Space Mountain (Magic Kingdom). Everest is so intense- plus it goes backwards- I vowed after last time not to ride it again myself! Rockin Roller Coaster is the only one to actually go upside down, and the beginning is VERY abrupt/fast so she probably wouldn’t love that. Space Mountain is borderline, but my son freaked out last time we were on it, so to play it safe you might want to avoid it. And Splash Mountain is another one to watch out for. It isn’t a coaster obviously, but it does have a huge drop.

  4. Any recommendations on our first trip? Going with my8 and10 year old boys. Any where I can get step by step directions on how to book everything? Have never been to Disney World only Disney Land and I was probably there age.tia

    1. Hm, I should probably write a post about that, shouldn’t I??? So if you know your date of travel the first thing I would book is your hotel. After that, you can do just about everything on https://disneyworld.disney.go.com/ . On that site you will buy your park tickets, make your dining reservations, and book your fast passes. The key dates are 180 days before the start of your trip, and 60 days before. At the 180 day mark you can make your dining reservations (yes, you will want to book all your sit-down meals as early as possible and ideally right at 180 days). As for fastpasses, you can book them 60 days in advance if you are staying at a Disney resort or 30 days in advance if you are staying off-site. I hope that helps some! Enjoy your trip!

  5. So I have a 4 yr old. Can my husband and I utilize rider swap and fast pass giving us extra passes?
    Ex) I schedule 3 and he schedules 3 different attractions
    Thanks for help!

    1. People used to do this all the time, but I have heard since ride switch went digital the second party may be asked to scan their band to make sure both parties have a FP. So that strategy *may* work, but it’s a bit of a risk.

  6. We have 2 full days in WDW Oct 2nd and 3rd this year just me and my husband. What would your plan of attack be. We want to eat and drink around the world one day at Epcot probably around later afternoon or evening one day. Is it possible to attempt all parks and ride the main rides or should we only pick 2? What are the must do rides? I’d love to hear what your ‘schedule’ would be😊 we have been to Disneyland once before with our kids but have never been to WDW thank!

  7. Thank you for your help, I had to pick some fast options for my honeymoon in June and you definitely helped me choose some good ones

  8. Hi! Great info… thanks! I haven’t seen anywhere about how far apart to book each FP+ from each other. Would 30 minutes be enough time? So like 10:30, 11, 11:30? Any suggestions are appreciated!

    1. Hi Carrie! Great question. When you book a FP, the time slot they give you is actually a one hour window. So you can’t make them closer together than an hour. When you are there in real time (on the app) if you finish your scheduled FP early you COULD move up the time of your next one, but it would be pending availability at that moment. Definitely no guarantee. So most likely your times would be 10:30, 11:30, 12:30 or a similar variation like that.

    1. Disney will only let you pre-book fastpasses in one park per day. If I am planning to park hop, my strategy is to do the first park as soon as it opens for the short line advantage of rope drop. Then I have my 3 pre-booked fastpasses waiting for me at the second park when I get there during the busy afternoon period. You can book additional fastpasses after your first three are used up, but the selection will be much more limited. Most of the top rides run out of fastpasses long before you will make it to the second park.

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