MaxPass vs FastPass+
Disney isn’t about rides it’s about waiting in lines. It doesn’t have to be, though, if you follow Bite-Sized Disney’s tips and tricks. The best one is to skip the lines entirely using MaxPass at Disneyland and FastPass+ at Walt Disney World.
At Disney resorts, FastPasses are available at select attractions to skip the stand-by line and wait in a (usually) much shorter line with priority boarding to the ride. In Disneyland and DCA, FastPasses are available through purchase of MaxPass. An additional $15 per day per ticket is required for MaxPass but also gives you access to the PhotoPass for unlimited downloads of special park photos. At WDW, FastPass+ is included with park tickets for no additional fee.
Making FastPass reservations is easy but significantly differs between the two Disney coasts. At Disneyland FastPasses cannot be made until entering the park – all reservations are made the same day. With Park Hopper tickets reservations can be made at two different parks on the same day. Once a FastPass is scheduled, another can be made once the first has been used during the return window noted on the FastPass or once the time shown to make another FastPass has elapsed. This means that guests can make multiple reservations throughout the day by watching return times and new pass times. FastPasses can be made, changed, and tracked on the Disneyland Mobile App. Beware of battery drainage, however! Check our post on what to pack to keep your phone alive for all the magic!
The FastPass+ process at WDW is completely different. Guests can make FastPass+ reservations 30 days in advance or 60 days in advance if hotel guests from the MyDisneyExperience App. Three FastPass+ reservations per day can be made in a single park. Additional reservations can be made after the first set of FastPass+ selections have been redeemed, one at a time. If you have Park Hopper tickets, additional FastPass+ selections can be made in another park. You can also use kiosks in the park to check for available FastPass+ selections or change one of yours. We found it easier to use the app on our phones.In Epcot, Animal Kingdom, and Hollywood Studios, tickets are based on a tiered system meaning guests cannot make all of their FastPass+ selections for the E or D ticket attractions. Park crowds are spread more evenly throughout the park minimizing FastPass+ line times using a tiered system but guests will have to prioritize their favorite rides or those that have the longest stand by waits throughout the day.
No one wants to wait in lines during their vacation. Despite the additional cost of MaxPass at Disneyland Resort it is worth it to skip the standby line and enjoy more Disney ride magic in your day. Plus you get all the downloaded from Cast Member photographers at the perfect park photo spots. Planning ahead with FastPass+ at WDW is great to get priority position in line at the most popular attractions (*cough Seven Dwarves Mine Train cough*).