If you thought waking up at 7AM to get a boarding group for Rise of the Resistance (back when the ride only used boarding groups) or (more recently) Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure was stressful, GET READY.
Recently, Disney World launched its NEW Genie, Genie+, and Individual Attraction Selection Services — the last 2 essentially serving as paid replacements for FastPass+. And on the launch day for these new services, 7AM became a whole other ball game.
As a quick recap, Disney Genie is a FREE planning service that helps you optimize your day in the parks.
Genie+ is essentially a paid FastPass+ replacement service that allows you to select a return time to ride an attraction using that ride’s Lightning Lane (the old FastPass+ lane). These return times can be selected one at a time throughout the day (with some exceptions).
Individual Attraction Selection is available for select, highly popular rides — and through this service you essentially pay individually to use a single ride’s Lightning Lane. You can get a maximum of 2 Lightning Lane selections per day.
Now, you might be wondering, why is 7AM such a big deal when it comes to Genie+? Well, it’s a big deal for 2 reasons.
First, when it comes to Genie+, guests can start selecting their first Lightning Lane arrival time starting at 7AM each morning.
Second, when it comes to Individual Attraction Selection, guests can typically make their first purchases when the park opens. BUT, if you’re staying at a Disney Resort Hotel, the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resorts, or Shades of Green, you can make your first Individual Attraction Selection purchase ALSO at 7AM.
OH, and if on top of Genie+ and Individual Attraction Selections, you’re trying to get a boarding group for Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure, the virtual queue sign-up for that ride ALSO starts at 7AM.
That’s 3 big things all happening at the exact same time. This morning, we were testing out Genie+ and its related services, and we logged into our My Disney Experience account just before 7AM to see how things would play out.
There were a few complications this morning, but overall things actually weren’t too terrible. One big thing to note is that at 7AM, the app didn’t seem to automatically refresh. So, if you’ll be booking those Lightning Lane selections or purchasing pay-per-ride options right at 7AM, be sure to manually refresh the page!
Right at around 7AM, one of our reporters tackled getting a virtual queue position for Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure, and they were able to get a group. Next, that same reporter worked on getting a pay-per-ride selection for Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure and they were able to get that selection for 10:10 AM ET, which was the first time available when they looked.
Right after, they picked their first Genie+ Lightning Lane selection and went with Test Track for 11:15 AM ET. Lastly, they looked through the app and booked Rise of the Resistance as their second pay-per-ride selection.
While this reporter had a LOT of things to do all at 7AM — virtual queue, Genie+ lightning lane selection, and 2 pay-per-ride selections — they were actually able to get it all done fairly easily.
But, there are some important things to note about this reporter. They came into 7AM well prepared. They had bought Genie+ ahead of the 7AM time frame (they purchased it around midnight on the day of their visit), and had already told Genie their interests, what they wanted to do for the day, etc.
They also made sure their My Disney Experience app was fully updated, ensured their tickets and park passes were all properly linked and set up, and logged into their account ahead of time. You’ll also want to make sure you’ve already got a payment method saved in My Disney Experience to help make things easier. When it comes to Genie, being prepared can really help things go smoothly.
Another big thing to keep in mind is that finding those pay-per-ride selections can be tricky. Many of our reporters noted that to buy these pay-per-ride selections, they had to go to the “Tip Board” section in Genie, select the park where the ride is located, and then scroll down to the attraction. Once you’re at the attraction, you’ll see the “Purchase for $XX” option, and you can click on that to select it and make your purchase.
That’s not necessarily as intuitive when you’re tapping away at 7AM, so it’s something to be aware of.
Also, be mindful of those Genie+ and pay-per-ride return times because they can fill up FAST! Right at 7AM, one reporter was able to get a Genie+ Lightning Lane return time for Slinky Dog Dash, but the first return time wasn’t until much later in the afternoon — around 4-5PM! Just a few hours later into the morning, pay-per-ride selections for Rise of the Resistance also filled up.
While it was smooth sailing for some of our reporters, others experienced a few issues. One couldn’t get the pay-per-ride option for Frozen Ever After to populate for them. To fix that, one reporter said they had to search for the ride itself, go to the page for the ride in My Disney Experience, and then select the “LL” (lightning lane sign) and purchase it from there. Another reporter attempted to do this but encountered an error. They were later able to book that reservation as it popped up in a separate search, so just be aware that you might encounter some bumps along the way.
If you do encounter an issue, try searching for the ride’s individual page and selecting the “LL” to purchase from there, or try looking through the Tip Board for the ride you want to buy the pay-per-ride selection for and see if you can purchase it from there.
Another good thing to note is that if you’re park hopping, Genie won’t let you buy a pay-per-ride selection for a ride that’s NOT at the park you have a park pass for (a.k.a. the park you’ll be hopping to) for any return time sooner than 2PM. That makes sense since park hopping doesn’t start until 2PM, but we just wanted to note that here.
So, it seems your 7AM wake-up call just got a little bit more hectic. We’ll be continuing to test out Genie+ so we can give you all of the tips and tricks you’ll need to master the service during your next trip. Be sure to stay tuned for more!
What do you think about the new Genie+ service? Tell us in the comments!