Magic Kingdom Genie+ Survival Strategies for the Week of October 19th

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Genie+ is rolling out on October 19th and you already had a trip planned for that week. (You may be ready to say some un-Disney-like words when you heard that!)

TouringPlans is good, but we can’t magic data out of nowhere. The fact of the matter is that we won’t really know how you can best tour with or without Genie+ starting October 19th. We have guesses about what will happen to standby times, how you’ll be able to use (or avoid using) Genie+, etc. But we can’t time travel (yet), so we can’t test them out until the 19th. We’ll be testing and gathering data and getting it back to you as quickly as we can. But if you’re travelling that week of the 19th … we can’t help you. At all. Article over. . . I’m just kidding.

While we can’t give you absolute truths or the same predictions that we’re normally very certain about, we can give you some tips and advice based on hypotheses. This week we’ll be providing you with strategies for each park based on the predicted crowd levels for the week of the 19th. One strategy will assume you want to avoid using Genie+, and the other will guide you through how to take the most advantage of Genie+ if you want to purchase it. In neither strategy will we assume or suggest that you pay for the Individual Lightning Lane Access. If you decide to do that, you just do it when you want and remove those attractions from other parts of the plan. The strategies here can give you a sense of direction and should be workable most days from Oct. 19-26, except for maybe Saturday the 23rd. Crowds may be heavier that day, so you could follow the same strategy, but cut out a few of the attractions if you run short on time.

How do I tour Magic Kingdom without Genie+?

Seven Dwarfs Mine Train car rushing past on the track
It’s a fun ride. Don’t rope drop it. You’ve been warned.

If you have early entry, you should have an easy morning of touring Fantasyland. Even without early entry, that’s still probably the spot to go. Just don’t try to rope drop Seven Dwarfs Mine Train. That will be a mass of humanity, and it’s likely that if you’re in the back of the rope drop back, you’ll actually have one of the longer waits of the day. Instead, zig when they zag. Do the following first thing, in any order that seems good (or optimizes well in the app), ideally with Peter Pan’s Flight as early as possible.

By 10:45, wrap up the above list, and check the Lines App and see if the wait for Seven Dwarfs Mine Train is reasonable. If it is, go ahead and hit that up while you’re in the area. Then, if you still have time before lunch, work in Mad Tea Party, Dumbo, and Tomorrowland Speedway.

The back of a small child is in the foreground as she points across a bridge toward Cinderella Castle, which dominates the background.
You’ll be going from Tomorrowland or Fantasyland to the other side of the park after lunch. A picturesque lunch at Sleepy Hollow might be an excellent choice.

After lunch, spend time in Frontierland, Adventureland, and Liberty Square. Save the mountains for later in the day, but go ahead and try to hit the following in whatever order makes sense:

Make your way to Tomorrowland by about 3 or 3:30 pm and experience what you would like over there before dinner:

Grab some dinner, then hit up Splash Mountain and Big Thunder Mountain before grabbing a spot for Enchantment. If you had to skip anything earlier in the day (or want to re-ride a favorite), you should have time to hop in a line or two before park close as everyone else just bails for the exit.

Note: Depending on how much demand for Genie+ exists during the first week, standby queues may slow down by a bit compared to our predictions. Follow the generic times proposed above, but if you start falling behind, you may have to skip a ride or two in the morning and in the afternoon.

How do I tour Magic Kingdom with Genie+?

You can fly (if you wake up at 7 am to get yourself a reservation)

Genie+ will be like FastPass on steroids, as far as how to take advantage of it. You’ll want to balance getting return times for rides where it will really make the most difference with getting as many return times as you can reasonably take advantage of. Since we don’t know exactly what availability or wait time savings will look like yet, this plan is generated with data we have from FastPass.

At 7 am, try to get a Genie+ pass for Peter Pan’s Flight, ideally with a return time around 10 am. This will free you up to rope drop Space Mountain in case it backs up later in the day. Around 9 am (2 hours after you got the Peter Pan’s Flight return time), try to get a Genie+ pass for Jungle Cruise or Big Thunder Mountain for the next available time, ideally opening sometime between 11 and noon. After Space Mountain, work your way toward Peter Pan, hitting any of these Fantasyland attractions as you have time:

  • Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh
  • Prince Charming’s Regal Carrousel
  • Under the Sea ~ Journey of the Little Mermaid
  • Mickey’s PhilharMagic

Ride Peter Pan’s Flight when your return time opens, and then finish off any Fantasyland attractions that you haven’t experienced, along with the Haunted Mansion.

Splash Mountain usually has wait times that peak in the afternoon, so that’s a good time to try to find a Genie+ reservation.

When your next return time opens (at Jungle Cruse or Big Thunder Mountain), tap in there and search for another Genie+ pass while you’re in line. You should likely prioritize Splash Mountain, if there are return times left for early-to-mid afternoon. Grab lunch and spend the early afternoon doing other Frontierland or Adventureland attractions, like the following:

  • Enchanted Tiki Room
  • Country Bear Jamboree
  • Jungle Cruise or Big Thunder Mountain (whichever you didn’t get a Genie+ for)
  • Pirates of the Caribbean

You should be eligible for another Genie+ pass sometime around 1 or 2 pm, 2 hours after you got the Splash Mountain one. Pick the next available time for Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin so that you can use it in the late afternoon or early evening.

Finish up Liberty Square, Frontierland and Adventureland until your return time for Splash Mountain opens. This could include experiencing:

  • Tom Sawyer’s Island
  • Liberty Square Riverboat
  • Hall of Presidents

By 3 or 4 pm, you should be available for another Genie+ return time. Pick something that you haven’t experienced yet, ideally in Tomorrowland or Fantasyland. Make your way to Tomorrowland to use your Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin Genie+ return time, and also experience the following:

  • Monster’s Inc Laugh Floor
  • Carousel of Progress
  • PeopleMover

Around 6 pm, eat dinner and you should be eligible for one final Genie+ return window if you can and want to use it. Just make sure that it doesn’t overlap with getting spots for Enchantment if that’s a priority for you. After dinner, check the line for Seven Dwarfs Mine Train. Wait times should be going down, and you’ll hopefully have time to experience it in the early evening before heading to the Hub for Enchantment.

 

Are you planning on being in the Magic Kingdom the week of October 19th? Do you have any ideas about whether or not you’ll try out Genie+? Let us know in the comments!

 

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Becky Gandillon

Becky Gandillon was trained in biomedical engineering, but is now a full-time data and analytics nerd. She loves problem solving and travelling. She and her husband, Jeff, live in St. Louis with their two daughters and they have Disney family movie night every Saturday. You can follow her on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/becky-gandillon/ or instagram @raisingminniemes

23 thoughts on “Magic Kingdom Genie+ Survival Strategies for the Week of October 19th

  • October 12, 2021 at 2:15 pm
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    Boiling it it down, instead of getting a new one as soon as you use the previous one like with Fastpass+, you can get one every 2 hours. Start at 7 for Resort guest and opening time for everyone else? Do you have to be in the park after opening?

    Reply
    • October 12, 2021 at 2:39 pm
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      Hi Cheri! You can still get a new one as soon as you use the old one, but if you start at 7 am and accumulate them, this strategy guesses that more frequently the 2 hours will pass compared to just using the old one. But it _is_ whatever happens first, 2 hours passing or using the first one.

      Reply
      • October 12, 2021 at 6:06 pm
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        Always love your articles Becky! This is the content I am here for. Any rumors on when Genie+ will hit DLR?

      • October 12, 2021 at 10:26 pm
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        That’s so kind, Tiffany, thank you! No official word on a Disneyland release, but since you asked for rumors … a few credible sources have cited “2-3 weeks after WDW, if all goes smoothly there.” Knowing Disney IT, I give the chances of everything going “smoothly” at about 5%, but there’s chance.

  • October 12, 2021 at 8:18 pm
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    Not sure this is worth it for older folks like us who can’t really do a whole morning-to-night day in a park. I assume the later you first pick your first slot, the later your time to ride will be, and then 2 hours a pop after that.

    Suppose I try for ride X and get a time I don’t like. Am I now locked into that selection or can I immediately cancel it and try for ride Y? Or wait 20 minutes and try for ride X again? With FP+ you could dump one and get a different one, or try for a better time for one you’d already picked.

    Being able to immediately cancel the slot you’re given is particularly important if you discover it conflicts with a dining reservation. It will suck if your only option in that instance is to forfeit that slot and wait two hours to try for another one.

    Reply
    • October 12, 2021 at 10:28 pm
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      Hi Mike, as far as we know right now, it looks like Genie+ selections will not be modifiable or cancellable. This may change as the system matures and evolves, and it’s something we’ll be testing and asking questions about on the 19th. We’re also going to be testing the specific case of having a dining reservation that overlaps with a Genie+ reservation – so stay tuned and hopefully we’ll be able to answer your questions.

      Reply
      • October 12, 2021 at 10:43 pm
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        Ugh. Ok, thanks, Becky!

      • October 13, 2021 at 8:13 am
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        I wonder if it will account for dining reservations

  • October 12, 2021 at 9:59 pm
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    We will be at Magic Kingdom on Saturday, October 23. I think we will get Genie + simply because I have a four year old and it might be difficult to wait in the longer lines. We had a pretty reasonable touring plan for that date, so my biggest question right now is how to strategize for the Genie+ experience on top of my existing touring plans. For example, at 7 am, should the first ride I choose be the ride we’d like to ride earlier in the day, or one of the rides in our touring plan for the afternoon with the heftiest wait time (since we can get new reservations every 2 hours)? Much to consider.

    Reply
    • October 12, 2021 at 10:30 pm
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      I feel your planning pain, Amanda. If it was me and my 3 and 5 year olds, I’d be going for whatever would minimize our wait. Of course, for us that would probably mean starting with Jungle Cruise or Pirates of the Caribbean and trying to grab Genie+ for the Fantasyland spots later in the day. And that would feel _totally_ weird because we always do Fantasyland in the morning. So I don’t know if I could emotionally bring myself to follow my own advice.

      Reply
      • October 13, 2021 at 8:40 am
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        Thanks so much! I think we’ll put together a list of absolute must-dos for him and use that to plan our Genie+. Jungle Cruise and Pirates will definitely be top of the list, and maybe we’ll snag Buzz Lightyear for the afternoon.

    • October 13, 2021 at 8:32 am
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      I wish a fast pass system would not return to the parks. It has been nice without it. All it does is add stress to the day.

      Reply
  • October 12, 2021 at 10:32 pm
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    Thank you for this! Becky, in your Genie+ example above, can you explain why you didn’t get another return after tapping into Peter Pan? Couldn’t someone do that (and essentially have two Genie+ ride timelines going at the same time)? Or is that not possible, because you’ll have booked either JC or Thunder less than two hours earlier?

    Reply
    • October 12, 2021 at 10:45 pm
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      Hi Jill, yeah – I think because you’ve just booked one, you wouldn’t be able to get another until 2 hours have passed or you use that one. I believe it resets the timeline. (Thankfully, it doesn’t _prune_ the timeline – if you’re a Loki fan). But I could be proven wrong – we’ll make sure that we test it out.

      Reply
      • October 13, 2021 at 10:56 am
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        You made me LOL with the prune comment— thanks for that!

        I can definitely see what you’re saying; and I’ll anxiously await more details once it’s actually been rolled out. Thanks so much for all the work you and the TP team are doing on this!

  • October 12, 2021 at 11:29 pm
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    I’m even more confused now. I thought the 2 hour window worked as follows: Only one reservation at a time. The only exception is if you get a return time more than 2 hours away. In that case you can get and use a second one. (If this understanding is correct, in your example you could have gotten another reservation at 7:59 am prior to your Peter Pan flight but not at 9am). And you don’t have to wait 2 hours to make another reservation….you can do it as soon as you use you current reservation. It sounds like my understanding may be way off.

    Also, I heard that you can cancel and modify Genie+ reservations but not the special single ride purchased lightning lanes.

    So confusing. My trip is in December so I can come back once more is known.

    Reply
    • October 13, 2021 at 8:14 am
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      In this example, we’re assuming that each time you pick up a Genie+ reservation, it resets the “2 hour or use it” timer. We’ll be testing that assumption next week, so you’ll definitely have more information by December! But this is a simplified version of how it might work:
      7 am: Pick up a Peter Pan reservation (let’s say the return time is 10 am – 11 am)
      9 am: Pick up a Jungle Cruise reservation (it’s 10:30-11:30) – this resets the timer, so I’m not eligible for another one until 11 am, or when I tap into Jungle Cruise
      10 am: Tap into Peter Pan
      10:30 am: Tap into Jungle Cruise, while in line, pick up a Splash Mountain reservation (return time 2:30 – 3:30) – this resets the timer, so I’m not eligible for another one until 12:30 pm, or when I tap into Splash Mountain
      12:30 pm: Pick up a Buzz Lightyear reservation (3:30 pm – 4:30 pm) – this resets the timer, so I’m not eligible for another one until 2:30 pm, or when I tap into Buzz Lightyear
      2:30 pm: Pick up a Dumbo reservation (4 pm – 5 pm) – this resets the timer, so I’m not eligible for another one until 4:30 pm, or when I tap into Dumbo
      3:30 pm: Tap into Buzz Lightyear
      4 pm: Tap in Dumbo; while line I pick up another reservation … etc
      2:30 pm

      Reply
  • October 13, 2021 at 12:50 am
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    There is some misinformation here. As a DL MP “expert” (I regularly got 15 MP in a full day), you can have more than one at a time, and you can get another not only after you’ve tapped in or 2 hours passed but also when your return time passes, without tapping in, so if you have a 10:30 return time, you could get another G+ at 10:30, thus holding 2 at a time, and tap in for the 10:30 ride at say 11:15. I often had 5 in the late afternoon/early evening as I got return times far out, waited 90 min (max time for MP @ DL), got another far out, waited 90 min and so on. I would have 5 MP for headliners to use from 4-6:30. It’s both an art and science to know which ones to get when.

    Reply
    • October 13, 2021 at 8:15 am
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      But this isn’t MP.

      Reply
    • October 13, 2021 at 12:35 pm
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      Hey Rose. I wouldn’t say “misinformation,” but the article is making some assumptions that may turn out to be untrue.

      Becky’s hypothetical timeline above reflects how the “extra” fastpass+ slots used to work, where you could reserve a 4th after using your 3rd, reserve a 5th after using your 4th, and so on. Tapping into the attraction was what allowed you to reserve another FP+.

      However, you are correct that under the legacy fastpass/maxpass system, you could reserve your next slot 2 hours after the previous one OR once the previous one became valid (whether or not you’ve used it). If you obtained a Big Thunder pass at 9:30am that was good from 10-11am, you could grab your next one at 10am (even if you didn’t actually show up to Big Thunder until 10:50).

      We’ll just have to see whether Genie+ follows the FP+ rules or the FP/MP rules.

      Reply
  • October 14, 2021 at 11:12 am
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    There is no way we are doing this. Fast pass needs to return. Ticket prices just went up again. We pay to be DVC, now adding $15/ person/ day is getting to be too much. Disney is working on pricing itself out Bob Chapel needs to go. He is too darn greedy.

    Reply
  • October 14, 2021 at 1:35 pm
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    Thanks for the great info!
    My question is about park hopping and Individual Lightning Lane passes.
    If we’re starting our day at DHS (we have a park reservation), but not buying an Individual Lightning Lane passes for the DHS rides.

    At 2 PM, we’re parking hopping to EPCOT which is likely too late to get a boarding group for Remy.

    Can we buy an Individual Lightning Lane pass for Remy at 7 AM that morning, or do we have to wait until we actually enter EPCOT before buying one?

    Reply
    • October 14, 2021 at 2:01 pm
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      Good question Ken, and I don’t know if we know the answer for sure. Intuitively, Disney has said that you can make ILL purchases for multiple parks in the same, which should mean that you can purchase them whenever you want. We’ll be attempting to make an ILL purchase for a “2nd park” early on the 19th, so we’ll report back that day with the results.

      Reply

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