written by Christina O’Neill, Travel Specialist
Don’t let the Ride lines at Walt Disney World get you down!!!
We all associate Walt Disney World with fun character meets, yummy food, family adventures, fun rides and of course, ride lines. Pretty sure we enjoy all but the last! Those ride lines don’t have to make everyone be like Grumpy! There are ways to pass the time and keep everyone acting like Happy instead! Here’s a countdown of my family’s personal ride-line-coping-mechanisms!
10. Open your My Disney Experience app and start making plans for what comes next. Check out wait times, book your next FastPass, plan your next food stop, see what rides or shows are nearby, or parades and characters you might like to meet. Get the whole family involved in the planning!
9. Keep a secret stash of snacks and candy in your park bag reserved for lines only and take this time to open it up and thrill your kids. I keep a little tin of mints or gum, or small hard candies in my bag and only hand it out in ride lines. Cheetos,too, which my kids never get, thanks to that messy orange powder! The nice thing about this is it keeps my kids from groaning when we enter a long ride line, but rather they get a bit excited because they know it’s a chance for them to get a special treat. Or if you know you’re about to enter a long wait, grab a cotton candy, Mickey bar, Mickey pretzel or other snack before heading in. Food always helps pass the time.
8. Use your wait time to take silly selfies! Instagram, Snapchat and Facebook all have fun filters to have fun while you wait. Even better, post them to social media and let your kids watch peoples funny responses to their posts. Or take pics of your favorite pair of ears while waiting and have your friends guess where your ears are on social media!
7. Look for Hidden Mickey’s while you’re just standing around! I guarantee you’ll find a few.
6. Take in the your surroundings while you’re looking for those Hidden Mickey’s! The Imagineers are some of the most creative minds in the world and the tiniest little details they come up with and add to the attractions and around the park are always so amazing. For example, the submarine in the rocks at Journey of The Little Mermaid, a nod to the extinct ride 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea. Look down at the sidewalks in the lines for horse shoes, boot prints, jewels or the fabled engagement ring at Haunted Mansion. Speaking of Haunted Mansion, spend some time in line reading the tombstones! They’re super fun. Look for Madame Leota, she’s looking for you! And Mr. Toad, too in the pet cemetery. There is a chemical makeup detailed on pipes in Dinosaur. Do you know what those ingredients actually make? Or while you’re waiting in line for the Royal Carousel, be on the lookout for Cinderella’s horse, the one with a gold ribbon on her tail. So many fun things to notice and see while you wait!
5. Speaking of details, some of the rides around the parks have interactive queues. These are always a big hits with kids and adults alike! From the dripping honey or musical garden at Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh to the giant playground awaiting you in the Dumbo queue, there are some attractions whose lines are almost as entertaining as the ride itself. Peter Pan, Space Mountain, Journey of the Little Mermaid, Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, Big Thunder Mountain, Frozen Ever After and Soarin’ all have interactive queues too. Take advantage of the entertainment and use these fun queues!
4. SING! Just start belting out your favorite Disney tune! I promise not only will your kids have fun, but you might just start a chorus when others fighting boredom join in too.
3. We like to play games during our wait times. The Heads Up app is always a hit with my kids. You can play any sort of alphabet game, like naming things you see in order of the alphabet, characters that start with A, B, C, etc. If you have any games you like to play to pass the time in the car, use them here too.
2. Checkout the new Disney Play app! Disney introduced this super fun new feature the summer of 2018 and it is such a great little secret. I see so many iPads being used in queues but the Play app allows everyone to participate. You can play Disney trivia at anytime in the app, just pick your favorite land and get started with the trivia button. The Play app unlocks games in certain rides that don’t activate until you have entered the Ride queue. Some even allow you to play with others waiting in line. There are ride playlists for great Disney music, rewards for using a fastpass or even getting in line, ride specific games. It’s just all around fun throughout the park and good for everyone to play. It’s nice to be able to use the electronics as a time-killer, but in a way that involves the whole family. We LOVE this new Play app and just in the few months we’ve been using it have seen lots of new additions. I hope it only continues to grow and just add more fun to our park days! My daughter insists I keep it on my phone and she still plays music and trivia at home, while wishing to be back at Walt Disney World of course!
1. Use this time to TALK to each other!! I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen whole families with everyone on a different screen, noses in the iPads and phones. Ask about favorite rides, best experience of the day, what to do next, what do you think your friends are doing back home? Use this time to find out what your kids will remember the most from this trip. Ask your spouse or whoever you are traveling with what has been their best moment. And don’t stop there. Get to know your line neighbors! Maybe you’re from the same town. Maybe you will learn something new about the parks, get a good tip, find out that a ride is down or that something has a really short line. And take it even further! Talk to the Cast Members! We love love love to do this. We always enjoy talking to the Cast Members. And they enjoy being acknowledged as more than just the person checking your magic band! We have had such fun conversations in the lines waiting for attractions. I even once met a woman who had decided on an impromptu weekend road trip for her kids first Walt Disney World visit and basically showed up the day before with a new hotel reservation. She hadn’t booked any fast passes or done any research. She was so confused and we stood in line at Small World and booked all her fast passes for the weekend. She was thrilled and we kept bumping in to them around the parks. Make a new friend and have a little fun!
The ride lines don’t have to be the worst parts of your trip! Find what works for your family and turn the waiting into a memory too!