The Imagineers hard at work on NextGen at Walt Disney World just wrapped up another phase of testing that ran from June 20-26, 2013.

According to sources, Disney invited guests staying at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge and Disney’s Contemporary Resort to participate in the test using MagicBands (the new wristband – with optional decorative accessories – that is rumored to hold your tickets, hotel room key, charging privileges, and FastPass-like access privileges).

FastPass vs. FastPass +

Today any part guest can use FastPass – where you put your admission ticket into a machine and get a piece of paper that tells you when you can return to the attraction with little wait. But as part of this test Disney also identified certain attractions for FastPass +.

At least for the purpose of this test, FastPass + differs from good old FastPass in three important ways:

1 – With FastPass + you make reservations in advance, just like you do for dining.

2 – With FastPass + you can reserve for both selected attractions and also selected experiences, like parades and evening spectaculars. FastPass doesn’t include parades and events.

3 – With FastPass + there is no paper ticket. Everything is tied into your MagicBand and is managed either using the My Disney Experience web site or mobile app.

FastPass + entrance sign at the Tomorrowland Speedway.

FastPass + entrance sign at the Tomorrowland Speedway.

Disney identified many different attractions as either FastPass or FastPass + as part of this test. Let’s take a look:


Magic Kingdom

FastPass FastPass Plus
The Barnstormer
Big Thunder Mountain
Buzz Lightyear Space Ranger Spin
Dumbo The Flying Elephant
The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh
Town Square Theater – Mickey Mouse
Town Square Theater – Minnie Mouse
Mickey’s PhilarMagic
Peter Pan’s Flight
Space Mountain
Splash Mountain
Under the Sea – Journey of The Little Mermaid
Enchanted Tales with Belle
Haunted Mansion
it’s a small world
Monsters, Inc. Laugh Floor
Pirates of the Caribbean
Stitch’s Great Escape
The Magic Carpets of Aladdin
Tomorrowland Speedway
Main Street Electrical Parade
Celebrate a Dream Come True Parade

Epcot FastPass Plus Test

FastPass FastPass Plus
Living with the Land
Mission: SPACE
Maelstrom
Soarin’
Test Track
Captain EO
Journey Into Imagination with Figment
Spaceship Earth
The Seas with Nemo and Friends
IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth
Character Spot

Disney’s Hollywood Studios FastPass Plus Test

FastPass FastPass Plus
Rock ‘n Roller Coaster
Star Tours
Twilight Zone Tower of Terror
Toy Story Mania
The American Idol Experience
Disney Junior Live on Stage
The Great Movie Ride
Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular
Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show
Muppet Vision 3D
Voyage of the Little Mermaid

Disney’s Animal Kingdom FastPass Plus Test

FastPass FastPass Plus
Dinosaur
Expedition Everest
Kali River Rapids
Kilimanjaro Safaris
Primeval Whirl
Adventurer’s Outpost Meet ‘n Greet
Festival of the Lion King
Finding Nemo The Musical
It’s Tough to be a Bug

Many of the attractions above used to be FastPass locations a while ago, but over time dropped from the FastPass lists. In addition, many other attractions in the above list were never part of FastPass at all. In fact, it seems like these lists identified a big percent of all Disney’s attractions and events at each park into either the FastPass list or the FastPass + list.

Will Disney Eventually Charge For This?

At this point nobody, perhaps even Disney itself, knows what – if any – of the pieces of NextGen will require extra payment or require a stay at a certain level of Disney Resort Hotel.  Many other parks like Universal Studios already charge for ‘line jumping’ privileges.

However, I think a comment that Disney’s Chief Financial Officer Jay Rasulo made a comment on a company earnings call was promising. He said that a big driver for NextGen was to get people to plan their Disney vacation in advance. When guests plan in advance, they stay at Disney longer (vs. heading to other Orlando parks) and spend more money at Disney.

But time will tell.

What do you think about this FastPass + test?