The ONLY 3 Times You Should Avoid the Disney World Skyliner

The Disney Skyliner is just one of the many ways to get around Walt Disney World. While on board the gondola, you get fantastic views of Disney World and a convenient way to move between Disney’s Hollywood Studios, EPCOT, and select resorts.

When should you avoid the Skyliner?

The Skyliner could be considered an attraction in itself as you soar up to 60 feet in the sky while traveling at 11 miles per hour. Three different lines connect you to various parts of the Walt Disney World resort. But watch out — there are three situations when you’ll actually want to AVOID this impressive transportation system.

The Disney Skyliner has been open since September 2019 and provides a convenient way for guests staying at Disney’s Art of Animation Resort, Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort, Disney’s Pop Century, and Disney’s Riviera Resort to access both Hollywood Studios and EPCOT.

Disney Skyliner

Other guests can utilize this transportation method to travel between Hollywood Studios and EPCOT (or to the resorts, of course, if they want to visit!). Overall, the Disney Skyliner is an efficient and easy way to move around Disney World. But are there any times you should avoid the Skyliner?

Disney Skyliner

There are three main times when you may want to choose a different Disney Transportation method. Don’t worry though, you have lots of options, including buses, monorails, boats, Minnie Vans, and more. Let’s take a look at when the Disney Skyliner may not be your best option.

Stormy Weather

This is the main time when you will want to choose a different transportation method. Mainly because the Skyliner will shut down during severe weather. If there is lightning within a 10-mile radius the Disney Skyliner will need to shut down (once it gets all guests on board safely to the nearest station, of course).

Use a different transportation method during stormy weather.

When the Skyliner is down, there will be bus services provided at the front of EPCOT and Hollywood Studios for guests who are staying at a Skyliner resort. Don’t worry, Disney World won’t leave you stranded at the parks. The good news is once the storm has passed and the Skyliner is cleared to begin operation again, they are quickly able to start loading people again.

Certain Times in the Morning

We did a bit of an experiment at the Skyliner station between Pop Century and Art of Animation. We watched and timed the lines, and also spoke with some Cast Members at the station.

Right before rope drop will be crowded.

We learned that the busiest time of the morning tends to be around 8:15AM until 8:30AM, since EPCOT and Hollywood Studios open at 9AM (and 8:30AM for early entry). The peak time will vary a bit depending on when those two parks open. The Cast Member said this is the time of the morning to expect the biggest backup, but it is still nothing crazy. At peak crowds, you will likely only be waiting about 10-15 minutes to make it through the line. There will be some additional back-up at the Caribbean Beach transfer station though, too.

Pop Century Resort

We learned a lot from Skyliner Cast Members. For one, the Skyliner system can load three monorail cars worth of people in just one minute. They are very efficient, and since they have been open for a while, they are now experts at the operation. The Cast Members said even when the line looks long, it moves quickly.

Disney Skyliner

So, while this may be one of the busiest times for the Skyliner, and you may want to plan to arrive at the Skyliner at a different time, the line does move quickly, and you can expect to be on your way in no time.

Right after Luminous or Fantasmic!

The last time that you may consider skipping the Skyliner is right after Luminous or Fantasmic! When these shows are over and everyone else is trying to get out of the park, you will likely see a back-up at the Skyliner.

Climb aboard the Skyliner!

However, according to Cast Members, the wait may not be as long as you might expect. Like we said before, the Skyliner is pretty efficient at moving people. A Cast Member we spoke to said that you could expect to wait about 20 minutes at Hollywood Studios after Fantasmic! lets out to board the Skyliner. While it is a bit longer at EPCOT after Luminous, where you can expect to spend about 15-45 minutes waiting to board.


After the nighttime shows is one of the busiest times for the Skyliner. However, this is also true for other modes of transportation. You will likely find yourself waiting a bit longer for the Skyliner after a show lets out but know that most transportation options will also have an influx of people.

To avoid those long waits, you can take your time exiting the parks after the shows. Usually some gift shops will stay open for a while as guests leave the park, so you can take the time to do some shopping while you wait for crowds to die down!

Expect back-ups after the nighttime shows.

These are the three main times that you may consider a different transportation option. During lightning you will need to opt for a different transportation method, but the other two times are not as necessary. You will see a longer queue, but with the efficiency of the Skyliner, you will likely not be waiting too long.

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2 Replies to “The ONLY 3 Times You Should Avoid the Disney World Skyliner”

  1. This article doesn’t take into account that Disney does not always run buses to/from resorts and the parks. If the Skyliner is running, the chances are that there is no bus. I recently tried to get a bus back to Caribbean Beach from Hollywood Studios after I saw the very long line for the Skyliner. No bus. It was only a 15 minute wait for us to get a gondola, which can be quicker than waiting for a bus at the end of the day.

  2. Yes! Love the Skyliner. Sometimes when we are at our Disney Resort, we take the Hollywood Studios bus when we want to visit Epcot. We get off the bus at Hollywood Studios and get on the Skyliner. We take Skyliner to Epcot. It leaves us off right near France and England , or the Epcot rear entrance. Just another option if you want to avoid a long walk from where the bus leaves you off at Epcot traditional entrance. Plus, you get an extra high ride in the sky!