I’ve Used Genie+ 20+ Times in Disney World — These are the Rides You Should Prioritize

Hey everyone! Molly here!

Hi!

If you’ve been paying attention to Disney news over the last 4 or so months, you know there’s one thing everyone’s talking about: GENIE+.

This is Disney’s new “skip-the-line” service, which essentially replaced FastPass+. There are a LOT of differences between the two systems — most notably is that FastPass+ was free and Genie+ services come at a cost.

If you need more basic info on Genie+ — head to our Ultimate Guide! 

 

But the SECOND biggest difference is WHEN you can reserve your return times at the rides and experiences. With FastPass+, guests could start booking return times 30-60 days in advance. With Genie+, guests can’t start booking until 7AM THAT DAY. This is to provide a more equal opportunity for guests — regardless of where they’re staying or when they booked their trip (to clarify, we’re just talking Genie+ right now, not Fancy Rides.)

Booking a Genie+ Selection at 7am ©Disney

As you can imagine, this leads to certain attractions being HIGH DEMAND right at 7AM, often with times for the entire day booking up within minutes of becoming available. So which rides to prioritize? After you’ve booked that first must-ride Lightning Lane (this is the name for the physical expedited line at the attraction), what comes next? Are any rides a WASTE of a Lightning Lane?

That’s what we’re here to discuss today! I’ve used Genie+ in the Disney parks A LOT at this point (20-30 times at least), both for work and on personal visits. I’ve discovered a lot of tips and tricks for using the system — and it’s my job to share those with you so you can maximize using Genie!

Here is my guide to which attractions you should prioritize with Genie+ at each Walt Disney World Park! 

©Disney

A quick note before we get into this — obviously everyone has different priorities when visiting Walt Disney World. These suggestions are based on the rate at which they run out of return times, average wait times, and general popularity. If you have no interest in my #1 priority suggestion — just book the alternative or something else ranked high first!

If something I put as a third-tier priority is your child’s FAVORITE ride and they’ll have a meltdown, then it may be a higher priority for you to book. No matter what, I highly recommend booking a pass at 7AM to maximize your day. The beauty of this system is you can use it where YOUR family wants to, and hopefully use these tips and tricks to have a good day.

Lightning Lane entrance for Jungle Cruise in Magic Kingdom

I also want to state that I know Genie+ is horribly complicated. It’s my least favorite thing about it. It’s tricky to remember all the rules, and frustrating when it seems like nothing is available. That’s why we’re here! If you prioritize the top rides early, ideally you’ll be able to use the Lightning Lane at most of your must-rides throughout the day. Plus — refresh, refresh, refresh. (AKA FIDDLE FADDLE.) You should absolutely prioritize attractions, but if nothing looks appealing — don’t forget you can refresh the screen a few times to see if new options pop up.

And finally, this is JUST talking about Genie+ rides, not Fancy Rides. The two systems are essentially independent of each other, so the booking rules don’t apply between the two.

Cinderella Castle

MAGIC KINGDOM:

#1 Attraction to Book at 7AM: Jungle Cruise

Alternative: Peter Pan’s Flight

Jungle Cruise

TOP TIER PRIORITIES:

  • Jungle Cruise
  • Peter Pan’s Flight
  • Splash Mountain
  • Haunted Mansion
  • Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
  • Pirates of the Caribbean
  • Space Mountain (between February 25th and August 7th, 2022, this ride is available on Genie+)

SECOND-TIER PRIORITIES:

  • See Princess Tiana and a Visiting Princess at Princess Fairytale Hall
  • See Cinderella and a Visiting Princess at Princess Fairytale Hall
  • The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh
  • “it’s a small world”
  • Buzz Lightyear Space Ranger Spin
  • Dumbo the Flying Elephant
  • Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade
  • See Mickey at Town Square Theater

THIRD-TIER PRIORITIES:

  • Mad Tea Party
  • Mickey’s Philharmagic
  • Monsters Inc. Laugh Floor
  • Tomorrowland Speedway
  • Meet Mickey at Town Square Theater
  • Under the Sea ~ Journey of the Little Mermaid
  • The Barnstormer
  • The Magic Carpets of Aladdin
Spaceship Earth

EPCOT:

#1 Attraction to Book at 7AM: Test Track

Alternative: Frozen Ever After (between February 25th and August 7th, 2022, this ride is available on Genie+)

Test Track

TOP TIER PRIORITIES:

  • Test Track
  • Soarin’ Around the World
  • Mission: SPACE Orange (note you can only use Lighting Lane on ONE version of Mission: SPACE per day)
  • Frozen Ever After (between February 25th and August 7th, 2022, this ride is available on Genie+)

SECOND-TIER PRIORITIES:

  • Spaceship Earth
  • Mission: SPACE Green (note you can only use Lighting Lane on ONE version of Mission: SPACE per day)

THIRD-TIER PRIORITIES:

  • Living with the Land
  • The Seas with Nemo and Friends
  • Turtle Talk with Crush
  • Journey into Imagination with Figment
  • Disney-Pixar Short Film Festival
Chinese Theater

Disney’s Hollywood Studios:

#1 Attraction to Book at 7AM: Slinky Dog Dash

Alternative: Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run

Slinky Dog Dash

TOP TIER PRIORITIES:

  • Slinky Dog Dash
  • Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run
  • Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster
  • The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror
  • Toy Story Mania
  • Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway (between February 25th and August 7th, 2022, this ride is available on Genie+)

SECOND-TIER PRIORITIES:

  • Indiana Jones EPIC Stunt Spectacular
  • Alien Swirling Saucers
  • Meet Olaf at Celebrity Spotlight
  • Beauty and the Beast Live on Stage
  • See Disney Stars at Red Carpet Dreams

THIRD-TIER PRIORITIES:

  • Star Tours: The Adventures Continue
  • Muppet-Vision 3-D
  • For the First Time in Forever: A Frozen Sing-along Celebration
  • Disney Junior Dance Party
Tree of Life

Disney’s Animal Kingdom:

#1 Attraction to Book at 7AM: Na’vi River Journey

Alternative: Kilimanjaro Safaris

Na’vi River Journey

TOP TIER PRIORITIES:

  • Na’vi River Journey
  • Kilimanjaro Safaris
  • A Celebration of Festival of the Lion King

SECOND-TIER PRIORITIES:

  • DINOSAUR
  • The Animation Experience at Conservation Station
  • Kali River Rapids

THIRD-TIER PRIORITIES:

  • It’s Tough to Be a Bug
  • Feathered Friends in Flight
When you successfully use every Lightning Lane in Magic Kingdom.

Well, there you have it! Each park is broken down — prioritized by their Lightning Lanes.

Truly, the best way to use the system is to use BOTH standby and Lightning Lanes. Continue to book new Genie+ reservations as soon as you can throughout the day (ideally at the top, then second-tier attractions), and fill in the gaps with “filler” attractions (often the third-tiers on this list), dining, and shows. You likely don’t need Genie+ for a full day at JUST Animal Kingdom or EPCOT, but I’ve found it very helpful in Magic Kingdom and Hollywood Studios.

Hopefully, this guide will be a helpful resource when you’re planning your Disney World trip! And if you’d like a downloadable PDF version, just click the link below!

Join the AllEars.net Newsletter to get the free list of Rides to Prioritize with Genie+! Click here to get started!

Click below to subscribe

What other Genie+ questions do you have for me? Drop yours in the comments, and I’ll share answers, plus more tips and tricks, in upcoming AllEars posts and videos!

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Molly is a lifelong Disney enthusiast, and former Walt Disney World Guest Relations Cast Member and tour guide. Her Walt Disney World favorites include Festival of the Lion King, Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, Fantasmic!, Mickey-shaped pretzels and rice krispie treats, and anything with Buzz Lightyear! She lives in Orlando with her husband (who she met in Guest Relations) and their two rescue dogs, Kronk and Cruella de Vil (Ella for short!)

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42 Replies to “I’ve Used Genie+ 20+ Times in Disney World — These are the Rides You Should Prioritize”

  1. All the years I spent using the system at Disneyland made transitioning to Genie+ much easier. Your lists are fantastic and similar to my thoughts after using the system in February. Thanks for validating my thoughts. Did you leave off Expedition Everest because it is a lightening lane plus?

    I hated the prior fast pass system and love the Genie+. We budget for the extra cost so we don’t feel like we are paying more…just like we’ve been doing at Disneyland for years.

  2. Hi! For early park entry do you suggest sticking to this or changing it up a bit? If so, what should be the first early entry ride/first genie+ rides to prioritize? Thanks!

  3. Genie+ often can work for you by yourself. We are a family of 7. Would it work the same or do fiddle faddle spots tend to open 1-2 at a time? It’s an extra $1000 for us for a full week with adding fancy rides.

  4. Can you do a utube video where you use genie+ and book these priority rides first so we can what a day like this actually looks like?

  5. This now seems outdated since Disney has added Frozen, Expedition Everest, Space Mountain and Mickey and Minnie’s Railway to Genie +

  6. Hi Molly, I’m confused. You stated you can make your first Genie+ selection at 7am. I thought the 7am time to select your first selection was for folks staying at a Disney resorts and all others had to wait til park opening to make a selection. Please help set me straight. Thanks

    1. Hi Kathy! Guests can make their Genie+ selections at 7am, but for if you are staying off property, you will not be able to make Individual Access Selections until the park opens.

      1. Can you double check these facts? Others are reporting it does not matter if you are staying onsite or not, everyone can book at 7:00 am with a park reservation.

        1. Hi John! You are correct. All regular Genie+ Lightning Lane selections can be made at 7am on the day of your visit whether or not you are staying on site. For Individual Access Selections or “Fancy Rides” Guests at resort hotels can book these at 7am and non-resort Guests can book these at park opening.

  7. When you book a genie plus selection and it says 9:40 how long do you have to get there? Is there a 15 min window after 9:40 if you are running behind?

    1. Hi Emily! You have an hour to get to your Lightning Lane reservation, but if for some reason you can not make it there within that hour, you have up to an additional 15 minutes to scan in late.

  8. Hi All Ears,
    I read somewhere that soon the rides included for Genie plus and the individual lightning lanes will change with space mountain, mickey and Minnie runaway minetrain and some others being available as genie plus. Do you know if this is true? If so, will this change your recommendations please?

    1. Hi Joanne! These rides are only going to be included in regular Genie+ Lightning Lane selections for a limited time between February 25, 2022 and August 7, 2022 and are not permanent.

  9. When I click the “click here” to download the list it gives me the 109 thinks list not this genie + strategy list. Can this be fixed?

  10. You mention that we can only have two booked rides at at time. Did they get rid of ride stacking? We are doing Animal Kingdom one morning and was planning to use our Genie + bookings (every 120 minutes) to get stuff for that evening at Hollywood Studios.

  11. Hi Team,

    Former CPer (90’s) that’s very familiar with the parks and will be staying at the Swan Reserve and taking advantage of early entry hours in a few weeks.

    Here’s my strategy and welcome any feedback.
    EPCOT: Try for Test Track or Soarin’ at 7am virtual queue. Entering via International Gateway at 9:30am rope drop and plan on heading to Remy’s and then Frozen Ever After both as standby.

    Hollywood Studios: Try for Smuggler’s Run (or Toy Story Mania) at 7am virtual queue. Head for ROTR standby line at 8:30am rope drop.

    AK 1/2 day morning: Try for Na’vi in 7am virtual queue. Head for Flight of Passage standby line at rope drop. Stay in AK til around 3pm and then head to….

    MK 1/2 day afternoon/night: This is where my planning ahead gets tougher. If there are extended hours, i’ll have more time but confused whether I can/should get Genie+ reservations on MK rides while still hanging out in AK. Is it just a case of stopping AK Genie+ and focusing on MK to prep for once I get there? Do they even allow that as a park hopper and not pre-designating that i’ll be heading to MK vs EPCOT etc?

    Oh, i miss fastpass and the lack of monetization. 🙂

    1. Hi jay,
      Your plans sounds good. Just another all ears fan and you may have already done trip but since you didn’t get reply thought I’d try.
      If AK opens at 8 (7:30 early morning ) before other parks you’ll be able to do your second genie plus at 10 (2 hours after that park opens) rather than 11. Personally I think only Kilimanjaro and na’vi are worth using genie + and I’d use the rest to stack at mk.
      I haven’t done the late night but heard it can go fast and there still can be considerable lines, at least at the beginning, at something like Peter Pan. I also believe jungle cruise and splash mountain are not included in the late night so if that is true you might want to make them a priority for stacking lightning lanes.
      As much as I too hate the monetization, I must admit I succumb to paying for “fancy ride” at rise. It just goes down so much, and even last at night doesn’t seem to work consistently anymore. If you are committed to rope dropping it, I’d try to be there by 8 rather than 8:30 early morning. They often start running rise before official 8:30 early morning but not anything else in Hollywood.
      Admittedly even with fast pass I had problems getting flight, and I love it, so I also paid for that, rope dropped na’vi since the safari’s weren’t open for early morning, and used first genie+ on Kilimanjaro than started stacking at 10.
      Hope you have, or have had, a satisfying day.

  12. I have a question about using the lightening lane when you are park hopping. Can you book a tier one ride at Hollywood Studios at 7am for an evening time when you have a reservation at Epcot and are planning to park hop to Hollywood Studios after 2pm? Would it also allow me to book a ride at 11am at Epcot pending there was availability?

    1. Clarification: you can book up to 2 individual lightning lanes per day. There is no hard limit on the number of genie plus bookings you can make.

  13. Oh Molly how I wish you were able to do this for Disneyland. I’m headed there in 19 days for my first visit and I feel so confused.

  14. Thank you Molly! We are going to WDW for the first time in a decade TOMORROW!!!! So excited. Your videos have been instrumental in us learning genie+ and fancy rides, and prioritizing…So excited!!!

    We appreciate all of your work! Maybe we will see you at the parks (there from Sun – Fri).

    Chris & Lori

  15. What do you do when you want to book both a genie plus attraction and a fancy ride? Both can be booked right at 7, which should I book first?

  16. Heading there in May for 4 days. I am afraid I am going to spend the entire time staring at my phone and miss everything around me, AGAIN. In 22 years we have been 6 times. In December 2020, I feel like I spent a lot of time on my phone for mobile orders, looking at wait times. Now add Genie to it, how much more will I miss. When I get on ride, rather then enjoy the ride, I have to book my next ride, so what, I miss out on the ride I am on. I am not exactly a whiz with my phone and apps. Now I am stressing about learning how to use Genie. By the time May comes around, how many more times will the rules change. I missed out on RoR in 2020, so you know I am going to pay all cost’s involved to get on this trip. We said 2020 was our last trip, now I truly believe this trip will be our last. The total cost is just to much to go, plus the stress.

    1. Have your app open and everyone in your party added before 7am. 1-2 seconds before 7am, refresh, and immediately hit RotR all the way through as quickly as you can. You can get the pass, just have to do it immediately since they go quickly. I’d guess more quickly than before since a park pass for Hollywood Studios is no longer required. I wonder what they do when someone goofs and gets a pass for a park before park hopping starts. Are they just out of luck?

  17. I am already stressing about the our trip in June twice delayed by Covid. We promised three of our grandchildren we’d take them, but this will be the end of our frequent WDW trips. This Genie+ business is ridiculous and definitely not user friendly

  18. Do you have a post similar to this but a version of you are a Disney Resort guest? For example, “don’t book this at 7am, but rather, rope drop and book ___ instead”? I know Molly has said these tips in videos but having it all in one place in a post like this would be SO nice to reference back to!

  19. You had me until Na’vi River Journey. Except for the animatronic, I thought it was a black light version of Pirates.

  20. We were at WDW two weeks ago when weather was nice.
    I was surprised Smugglers Run had a single rider lane and I used it and was on the ride about five to ten minutes after I entered. Since the ride seats six I think there is a good chance that two in your party can get on the same ship.
    Also I used the single riders lane at Test Track and got in the car about ten to fifteen minutes after I entered the lane.

  21. This article is one of the most valuable I have seen. Thanks for such a useful and simple summary of your experience. The PDF version of the info is much appreciated. That will be next to me every day at 7:00 AM during our next visit.

  22. I’m so glad there is no stress in a WDW vacation anymore, says no one. Way, way to complicated for a family vacation with kids.

  23. If I want to book “Fancy Ride” for ROR at 7am but also LL for SDD at 7am, how do I do both at same time so I don’t miss out??

      1. I was told it is best to have the Genie stuff on one phone for all in your party and that way it is handled by the most tech savy person with you. That way less complicated. We are going in July! 5th trip in 10 years, seems more complicated and costly than ever! Possibly our last due to those reasons and not as fun to plan, it is like a miserable job!

      2. @ Katy, sue and Brittany. Just saw this posting so maybe to late a response from just another all ears fan but…
        When we went early in December I had my fast fingered 16 year old granddaughter working on slinky at 7 and me, with my 74 year old very slow fingers working on rise. We amazingly got both. I don’t know if it made a difference , but we were staying at dolphin for two nights and I upgraded to the faster WiFi service rather than the free one because at that point I thought in for a penny, in for a pound.
        My grand did the app stuff the rest of the day, luckily cause my phone was having connecting problems within park. Ended up a much less stressful day than I feared. Got there just before 9 ( some problems upgrading tickets)for early morning but still had fairly short waits for standby on runaway and tower. Hope you have or have had a great time.