Guests Worried Disney is Inflating Wait Times for Profits

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genie surprised from Disney Aladdin

Credit: Disney

When visiting Walt Disney World, Disneyland, or any of the Disney Parks and Resorts worldwide, there’s one thing you can count on doing, which is waiting in line. Because of the popularity of the Disney Parks, millions of Guests visit each year, meaning you’ll more than likely have to wait in a few lines to ride and experience your favorite attractions. But after Disney released Genie+ into the Disney Parks, many are starting to wonder if Disney makes a profit off of its long lines.

disney world crowds
Credit: Thrill Geek

Related: Multiple Construction Projects Coming Soon to Walt Disney World’s Fantasyland

Disney Genie+ and Lightning Lane were released last year to much criticism and frustration, leaving many Guests feeling confused by the service. In theory, this paid service should enhance Guests’ experience at the Parks, but in practice, it seemed to just be an expensive itinerary planner. These paid services allow Guests to skip lines for a price, meaning Disney now has a financial incentive to have long lines. At Disney World, for $15.00 per day per Guest, you can skip the long standby queue by making a Lightning Lane reservation (new FastPass) and returning at that time.

disney genie question
Credit: Disney

At each Park, however, there are two attractions that Guests would need to purchase a separate Lightning Lane ticket for if they wanted to skip those lines. Those attractions are: 

  • Seven Dwarfs Mine Train
  • Space Mountain
  • Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure
  • Frozen Ever After
  • Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance
  • Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway
  • Avatar Flight of Passage
  • Expedition Everest

Related: Universal Throws Shade at Disney Over Insane Popcorn Bucket Lines

A recent post on Reddit, a popular social media site, highlighted these concerns from Disney Guests. See the full post below:

Reminder: Disney now has financial incentive to inflate wait times. Check out the queue length before buying LL or Genie+

There have been tons of reports of wait times posted significantly higher than actual waits, outside the margin of error. Yes they have been doing it for years, but that doesn’t really change my point. If you see a 60 minute wait, it could actually be 30 or less. Be careful in letting that influence your purchase decisions!

Reminder: Disney now has financial incentive to inflate wait times. Check out the queue length before buying LL or Genie+ from WaltDisneyWorld

User u/jrtasoli commented:

Can confirm lines are moving waaaaaaaay faster than posted times. And the parks were packed when we went last week.

We were in a posted-70 rise queue for around 30 minutes. A posted-60 minute Test Track was also around 25-30.

Also, separately: Genie+ is objectively just … bad. If I can’t get my first LL until noon, why can’t I make another reservation for another attraction sooner? Absurd shit.

ILL’s are actually decent.

User u/OSULugan commented on Disney’s DAS system:

And a reminder to those that think getting a DAS is just a free fastpass: return times are based on the posted wait time. So, use of the DAS can make your wait times longer, when the posted time is longer than the actual standby line time.

User u/MikeandMelly talked about how COVID-19 has affected this issue, saying:

Disney has been doing this on the extreme end since COVID started to keep lines from being any more of a super spreader situation than they already are. Will it help with LL? Undoubtedly. But I am tiring on the devilish narratives about how Disney is just looking to screw you.

rise of the resistance stormtrooper room
Credit: Inside the Magic Rebekah B.

Many Guests notice this issue the most with the newer rides, especially at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. With insanely-popular rides like Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance and Slinky Dog Dash, lines at Disney World have never been longer. While the issue of seemingly inflated wait times isn’t necessarily new to Walt Disney World or any of the Disney Parks, with Disney now offering a paid service to skip line, the concern of Disney making money off this issue continues to rise.

That being said, we have written on Cast Members speaking out on this issue and defending Disney against these claims. Read more on that here. 

What do you think of Disney Genie and Lightning Lane? Have you used either one? Let us know in the comments below!

Let the expert team at Academy Travel help you plan your next magical vacation to Disney World’s water parks, four theme parks — Magic Kingdom, EPCOT, Disney’s Animal Kingdom, and Disney’s Hollywood Studios — and the Disney Springs shopping and dining district!

While you are at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, you can enjoy Tower of Terror and Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith on Sunset Boulevard. By the Chinese Theater, Guests prepare to ride Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway. In Toy Story Land, Slinky Dog Dash always boasts a long line with others shooting their shot on Midway Mania or spinning their brains out on Alien Swirling Saucers. Of course, you have to visit Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge for some blue milk or green milk, and ride Rise of the Resistance and Smuggler’s Run! 

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