How to Shorten Your Wait Time at Disney World WITHOUT Genie+

Disney World has gone through quite the transformation throughout the last several years — and we’re not just talking about a physical transformation either.

Spaceship Earth

As technology and innovation evolve, so does the need for Disney to keep up. Over the past few years, we’ve said goodbye to Disney’s “skip-the-line” FastPass to make way for FastPass+, and even more recently said goodbye to FastPass+ to make way for the paid Disney Genie+. But, is paying to skip the standby line the only way to shorten your wait time in Disney World? NOPE! We’re sharing our top tips for how to shorten your wait time at Disney World WITHOUT Genie+!

Disney Genie+ is a new paid feature available in the My Disney Experience app that replaced FastPass+ in Disney World. Guests can access Lightning Lanes and bypass the standby lines for $15 per person, per day in the parks.

Gone are the days of skipping the lines for free in Disney World, but have no fear! We’re here to share our best tips for shortening your wait time in Disney World without having to pay for Genie+.

Disney Genie+

Get to the Parks Early

You’ve probably heard us talk about being at the parks for “rope-drop” before, and that’s because it’s still one of our best tips! Being at the park for rope-drop means that you’re there right when the park opens, giving you a good opportunity to head straight to your number one attraction with a shorter wait.

Rope drop crowds at Magic Kingdom

But, there’s also a way to get into the parks even before they open — through Early Theme Park Entry! Guests of Disney Resorts can take advantage of this offering and head to the parks up to thirty minutes before they open. This means that you might be able to experience your top attraction before the rest of the crowds arrive.

In either case, we recommend getting to your chosen park at least 30 minutes before you’re officially allowed in.

Early entry crowds

How Early Theme Park Entry Has CHANGED Rope Drop in Disney World — Click Here

Stay Late in the Parks

Have you ever been in a mad rush to exit a park after fireworks and think to yourself, “Why?” Us too, which is why we recommend staying in the parks even after the fireworks have ended. It’s a common misconception that Disney World shuts down immediately after fireworks, so next time you’re feeling like a night owl, stick around, and you might be able to walk right onto some popular rides.

Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind at night

Along the same lines as Early Theme Park Entry, select Disney Resort hotel guests can also take advantage of Extended Evening Hours throughout certain Disney parks on select nights. This benefit comes with the hefty price tag of a Deluxe Resort room. Granted, you’ll probably spend significantly more money on that room than you would on Genie+, but if you’re staying at a Deluxe Resort anyway, you might as well reap the benefits.

Animal Kingdom Lodge lobby

Click Here for More on Extended Evening Hours at Walt Disney World

Ride Attractions During Fireworks and Parades

Disney parades and fireworks draw huge crowds! The more people there are watching fireworks, the FEWER people there are in lines for attractions. We recently used this tip on our own and only waited 25 minutes for Seven Dwarfs Mine Train!

Disney Enchantment

The 5 Ways You’re Wasting Time in Disney World — Click Here!

Use the Single Rider Line

Although Disney only offers the single rider option at four attractions throughout the entire Disney World property (Expedition Everest, Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster, Test Track, and Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run), this can still be a great way to cut down on your time spent in line. As long as you don’t mind being seated separately from the rest of your party, the single rider line might just be the way to go.

Single Rider Line

Click Here for Our little-Known Disney World Transportation Tips That Will Save You Time!

Use Disney Genie (the free version)

We went over the basics of Genie+, but Disney offers a FREE planning tool to all users of My Disney Experience. Guests can answer a few short questions in the app, and Disney Genie will give them a tailored experience complete with attraction recommendations. It can even make suggestions based on your schedule and forecasted wait times!

Cinderella Castle

6 Walt Disney World Disney Genie Tips You Probably Haven’t Heard — Click Here!

Plan Your Trip During Off-Peak Times

Although “off-peak” times may be a thing of the past in Disney World, there are certain times throughout the year you may want to avoid if you’re trying to wait in the shortest lines possible. Holidays like Halloween and Christmas often draw the largest crowds and wait times. So, if you don’t need to plan your trip around the holidays, you might luck out with lower crowds.

Christmas Decorations in Hollywood Studios

There’s no foolproof way to shorten your Disney World wait times, but hopefully these tips might just do the trick! For the latest Disney news and more, don’t forget to stay tuned to AllEars.

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What’s your best tip for avoiding long lines in Disney World? Let us know in the comments!

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2 Replies to “How to Shorten Your Wait Time at Disney World WITHOUT Genie+”

  1. The single rider line is the greatest secret in all of Orlando, period. It’s great for the three coasters listed in this article. For Millennium Falcon, you will likely get stuck with engineer and not pilot or gunner. While joy a Disney park, we have used the single rider line to walk on to Forbidden Journey in the Wizarding World several times in a row!

    I would not suggest using the free Genie service to plan a day though. It’s has been shown to send people to where lines are short, but to minor attractions like Tom Sawyer’s Island or the Riverboat at ropedrop, and those attractions have short lines all day anyway. Genie sends you to where Disney wants you to go to evenly disperse crowds.

  2. If you happen to be walking by a ride that is temporarily shut down, it doesn’t hurt to wait outside the attraction for a short time to see if it reopens. This has worked for me at Rise of the Resistance, Toy Story Mania and Runaway Railway. Don’t linger too long; you could be waiting hours. This idea seems to annoy cast members, they don’t like you watching and waiting. Sometimes they even tell you to move along. Plus, large groups of guests bunched up in a small mob blocks walkways. I say try it for fifteen minutes or so, then move on. You might just get lucky