Something not announced as a part of celebrating Walt Disney World’s 50th anniversary was the Disney Genie, Genie+, and the accompanying lightning lanes. However, this anniversary present cannot be returned. The Genie system went through significant time and money in development, but that does not mean everyone likes it.
You may decide for your WDW vacation that the $15 (plus tax)per person is an unnecessary expense on top of your high-priced admission tickets. That is not a decision I can make for you. However, if you decide to purchase Genie+ on a day where you have a Magic Kingdom reservation, I want you to make wise choices.
Magic Kingdom may have the most value in purchasing Genie+. If you want more info about Genie+ process, please check article about Disney’ Hollywood Studios Genie+ suggestions.
The value in getting Genie+ at Magic Kingdom is there are 17 attractions available.
The math tells you that you have a far better chance to enjoy a lower wait time in the lightning lane at Magic Kingdom. Based on people’s experience and reports during early days of Genie+, you can expect to enter plenty of lightning lanes at Magic Kingdom on a moderate crowd level day. Depending on your park touring style, you could “ropedrop” a few additional attractions early to add to this total of low wait queues.
Like Disney’s Hollywood Studios, there are few Genie+ attractions that you probably do not need a lightning lane to enjoy with a low queue wait. The obvious ones so far are Tomorrowland Speedway, Barnstormer, Magic Carpets of Aladdin, Mad Tea Party, and Mickey’s Philharmagic. That does not mean you should not do these attractions but they tend to have low wait times and has not been worth using a lightning lane to enjoy them. Now if you go on New Year’s Day, that may be different but grace and peace if you go then because not even the Genie+ can save you now!
If we assume that you will not need lightning lane for those five attractions that leaves us 12 Genie+ attractions. There are still the two individual paid access attractions, Space Mountain and Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, but those are not included in Genie+. You will need to plan those in also, if desired. Hopefully, in upcoming weeks, we will publish a resource to help with those.
The twelve remaining are:
- Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
- Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin
- Dumbo the Flying Elephant
- Haunted Mansion
- “It’s a small world”
- Jungle Cruise
- Monsters Inc. Laugh Floor
- Peter Pan’s Flight
- Pirates of the Caribbean
- Splash Mountain
- The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh
- Under the Sea ~ Journey of The Little Mermaid
You may find some of those attraction choices to be undesirable or odd. I can appreciate that. You can need skip any attraction you want which frees up more time for the other attractions. For this resource, I am going to rank the priority order I would suggest based on current data for a general audience. You will need to adjust based on your preferences.
In other words, I would select these lightning lane attractions in this order if possible:
- Jungle Cruise– I am not sure why the queue waits have been longer recently with this attraction, but they have been. Also, this attraction has been running out of availability most days. In addition, like Slinky Dog Dash at Hollywood Studios, the early morning times are disappearing quickly.
- Peter Pan’s Flight– This should be no surprise to “Fastpass” veterans. This attraction has also been running out of return time slot most days.
- Monster’s Inc. Laugh Floor- I am very hesitant to recommend this one third. The sole reason is lightning lane slots have run out most days for this attraction. I have not seen long queue waits but if you want a shorter queue, this might should be higher on your list. Now, you may have no interest in this attraction but based on using Genie+, this is a proper slot for it.
- Splash Mountain- This attraction has been running out of lightning lane slots most days. Veterans of old system know this flume ride could run out of slots quickly.
5 & 6. Big Thunder Mountain and Haunted Mansion– both will have low waits in early morning and near park closing time. Still, they have been running out of lightning lane slot on some days.
- The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh– I am not sure what is going on here, but this has been running out of lightning lane slots on most days.
- Pirates of the Caribbean– The use of lightning lane could save you a significant amount of time over the standby queue, especially in afternoon.
The Remaining Four (It’s a Small World, Buzz Lightyear Space Ranger Spin, Under the Sea ~ Journey of the Little Mermaid, and Dumbo the Flying Elephant) These all seem to have same value with lightning lane so far. The lightning lane should save you some time but return times are not running out during the day. Once again, some of these could be skip-it attractions for you.
As I am writing this, modified character interactions have returned to Magic Kingdom. We do not know if those will eventually be lightning lane attractions. Also, Magic Kingdom has numerous attractions that rarely have a wait, like Hall of Presidents, that you will need to factor into your plan of touring Magic Kingdom.
Remember this is your theme park vacation! You are reading this to get information. People who go to Walt Disney World with adequate information have far better experiences than those that do not. You read this so you are well on your way to a great vacation. Now, only some of this data and suggestions may help you but every little but help. Thanks for reading!
Pirates & Princesses (PNP) is an independent, opinionated fan-powered news blog that covers Disney and Universal Theme Parks, Themed Entertainment and related Pop Culture from a consumer's point of view. Opinions expressed by our contributors do not necessarily reflect the views of PNP, its editors, affiliates, sponsors or advertisers. PNP is an unofficial news source and has no connection to The Walt Disney Company, NBCUniversal or any other company that we may cover.