Change to Anna & Elsa

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Allie's picture
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Change to Anna & Elsa

Have any of you heard about the new change to the Anna & Elsa standby line? Apparently starting either today or within the next day or two, they are going to be managing the standby line by only allowing it to be 1/2 hr in length. Anyone that attempts to get in line after it has already reached 1/2 hour will be given a return time from a cast member (obviously up until they run out of return times and then the standby line will be closed). So basically it is like Anna & Elsa have only a FP+ and a legacy fastpass line since that's essentially what the new standby line has become.

What do you think about this? Do you think Disney will start doing this for other big name attractions as well, namely TSMM, Soarin, Space Mountain, etc?

ETA: Apparently this is only a test and so may not be a permanent change.

The Watchmaker's picture
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Personally I think this " Frozen " thing has took Disney by surprise..It's gonna be the biggest money spinner in Disney's history..Yes I think it's a great film,with a great soundtrack, and some funny characters, but it just seems to have exploded beyond belief..As far as this idea goes of 30 minutes queue, only time will tell..

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It seems like a good idea to me - better than standing in line for several hours.

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If you are standing in line, you are not spending money.

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AnnielovesDisney's picture
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Here's a link from Kenny the pirate that shows you the return cards

http://kennythepirate.com/2014/07/23/anna-and-elsa-test-eliminates-traditional-stand-by-line-at-the-magic-kingdom-in-favor-of-lower-wait-times/

Allie's picture
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The downside though is if you don't get one of those return time cards before they run out, you don't get to do the meet & greet no matter how long you're willing to wait. I feel for the parents that were willing to wait in line 5+ hours because it was maybe the one thing their child wanted to do more then anything at Disney World. Now even if they're willing to wait 5+ hours they may not get to if they don't get there early enough.

crazycatperson's picture
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That's something I didn't think of...people who are not willing to wait hours in line will happily snatch up some of those return-time cards, so the folks who would wait in line might never get the chance now.

This is insane. I've got FP+ for the sisters in September, but now I'm thinking I should cancel so some little girl can have the chance to meet them. It will mean a lot more to her than it will to me.

Yeah, probably not gonna cancel. But there has to be something WDW can do to get more little girls in to see the sisters. Like, have them back at Epcot as well. Maybe at Epcot AND DHS as well. At least until the mania dies down.

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I think its a good idea in theory but I don't like that once the passes are out that you aren't even given the option to see them. Not all parents of young kids can get to rope drop or even to the parks super early and if the cards are really running out as fast as I imagine it will mean some disappointed kiddies. I guess if parents have kids that MUST see Anna and Elsa that they will just have to be up at midnight 60 days out and snag those fastpasses

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Sounds to me that it's FP+ or bust from Anna and Elsa, a bit of nightmare scenario for some planners. The procedures for Anna and Elsa meet and greets are always changing and that has to be frustrating for people who planning their trips. You have to think rope drop will be modified again because we've seen how people would literally run towards the line for Anna and Elsa at Epcot and the Magic Kingdom in the past just to avoid the long wait. With this new procedure given how not everyone uses FP+ for whatever reason maybe, I do feel this test could be asking for more trouble. But it's a three day test so we'll see how it goes.

Like I said earlier, Frozen has become a victim of its own success and it's really a Catch 22 situation as of now. And as much as we keep saying to Disney to add a M&G in Epcot, the Studios, etc, people don't realize how much manpower and resources is needed for that. You not only need for more friends of Anna and Elsa, but you'll need more photopass photographers and character attendants or greeters as I call them. And you need to makeshift an area in the park with all the necessary backgrounds and such and be able to adequately support a line without having a giant mob develop. I, like most of us, don't have a single clue what exactly is the budget in every respective aspect of a meet and greet but given what Disney has done with Frozen meet and greet procedures, you have to think it's not exactly superfluous.

I would not be surprised down the road, if they give one of the sisters the cold shoulder and only have Anna or Elsa do meet and greet just by themselves because in the past, look at Flynn Rider, a popular character in Tangled and had long lines for the meet and greets with Rapunzel but he got the shaft and only appears at special events. And if I recall, Anna was doing meet and greets on the Disney Cruise ship and it was just herself so to an extent, it's not something new Disney has done. What is tricky is if Disney had the nerve to cut one sister from Frozen, it'd be a hard decision. If not, I would expect some characters to go so that more friends of Anna and Elsa can be in the parks.

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Allie's picture
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crazycatperson wrote:
That's something I didn't think of...people who are not willing to wait hours in line will happily snatch up some of those return-time cards, so the folks who would wait in line might never get the chance now.

This is insane. I've got FP+ for the sisters in September, but now I'm thinking I should cancel so some little girl can have the chance to meet them. It will mean a lot more to her than it will to me.

Yeah, probably not gonna cancel. But there has to be something WDW can do to get more little girls in to see the sisters. Like, have them back at Epcot as well. Maybe at Epcot AND DHS as well. At least until the mania dies down.

No need to feel guilty, I'm sure as heck not cancelling mine either! The people I just truly feel bad for are the ones who may not even know what FP+ is when they show up for their first trip to Disney. There is a large group of people that show up for their "once in a lifetime" trip and just have no idea what they're getting into. What if their daughter has their heart set on meeting Anna & Elsa, but like EmFord said, struggle to make it to rope drop. Now they just don't have any option whatsoever to meet Anna & Elsa? Even if that's maybe their #1 priority and would have been willing to wait all day for it? That kind of blows.

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As far as we know, it is a three day test. Disney is just trying to find a good way to shorten the line to meet the sisters. Which is why Snow White and Aurora got kicked out of Princess Fairytale. I do believe that eventually that they want to return the sisters to Norway for a meet and greet as long as the line can be under control. Honestly, ever since the Frozen Fun started at Studios, the wait for the sisters was mostly a 90 minute wait but it did get up to 120 minute wait.

I do think they are testing out the same system with Soarin' as well.

Heres what Doctor Disney has to say

alicemouse's picture
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There are pros and cons of course. FP+ now becomes even more valuable for this meet & greet. I think the return cards are great for the parent that would have previously gotten stuck waiting in the line.

As far as the issue of getting up to make it to rope drop, it's a matter of priorities. If it is important to you and your family to get up and go to rope drop to get those cards, then you will sacrifice other things like staying out late the night before or sleeping in on vacation to make it happen. If you aren't able to make it to rope drop and you didn't get up early enough to book your FP+ (or if you are in a category that doesn't get a 60-day window), then you clearly value other things over doing this meet & greet.

If you want to meet anna & elsa but it's not a huge priority, now you can do it with a minimal wait and not burn a FP orr still have the opportunity to see the princesses on a short wait even if you are not staying onsite (30 day FP booking window). I couldn't get a FP+ for our quick August trip because we're stay at the Dolphin (30 day window) for the first night of our trip and by the time the wind opened up for night 2 at BWV, only one FP was left and the time was for after our flight was scheduled to depart. I was able to get a FP for September, but if I can get one of these cards instead and use the FP for a non-meet & greet, that would be great!

Also, here's an opportunity returned to us. A lot of people used to get FP for very popular attractions first thing in the morning and then after the FP's were gone for the day, they would select a family at random and give them the unused FP's as a way of spreading the magic. This option may be available again if this test was successful.

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Mandy's picture
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So it was a three day test. I think it went over well for the most part. The one day I did work during the test, no one mentioned to me.

IsabelSnow

I feel that they need to have Ana and Elsa at one of the charcter dining meals. That way for those with little ones that are not big on standing in line can have a chance. Maybe we will see this in Epcot once the Frozen ride is complete.

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My two cents on this is disney LOVE the hype, by doing this it is building more hype around frozen and the parks but most importantly it's hyping up fast pass plus. You see out side of die hard fans and first timers fast pass plus isn't really known about or more importantly understood. By making this change disney is forcing parents to understand and get on board, they are forcing them to be awake and ready at 60 days to book it their plans.... Because my gut tells me in 2016 the new frozen ride will be the first queue less ride, using fast pass only. Disney will role this out park wide and WDW will be marketing as "capture the magic with no queues at all"

This is the future of theme parks, it will be a book it and ride it structure we can either get on board early, play catch up or stop visiting. I'm happy to change.

Also because CRT is fully booked every night regardless why would disney add Ana and elsa? They will do a premium dinner at Xmas. Remember it's about making money, Wdw want you to up grade to hoppers and extend your trip by days... This is why frozen is being spread around the parks, I imagion if a character meal is going to happen it will end up in animal kingdom "svens stable" lol. Next step frozen, blizzard beach overlay.... Olafs frozen summer land..... You read it here first...

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designedbydisney wrote:
Because my gut tells me in 2016 the new frozen ride will be the first queue less ride, using fast pass only. Disney will role this out park wide and WDW will be marketing as "capture the magic with no queues at all"
This is the future of theme parks, it will be a book it and ride it structure we can either get on board early, play catch up or stop visiting. I'm happy to change.

If your theory does become fact sometime in the future, then WDW would HAVE to change the AP FP+ window to 60 days out instead of 30 days. It is already impossible for local AP to get FP+ for Wishes, 7DMT, FoF, and several other very popular rides/attractions because everyone else got them at 60 days out. It's an interesting theory that remains to be seen.

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I say it all the time but disney doesn't care about annual pass holders, they do at disneyland but WDW is all about first timers, as long as they are happy, they don't care. They way they see it is annual pass holders are fans and are going anyway, they have you already.

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"if you are standing in line you aren't spending money"

excellent point! I also wonder how many instances there are of people 'snapping' after waiting in line for upwards of two hours.

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If there is anything that Disney has mastered it is "creating an experience".

Let's be honest: standing around in line is a lousy experience. Walking through a park to see people standing in line is a lousy experience. Disney understand EXACTLY how many people they can expect to move through an attraction in any given hour. By handing out return passes, they manage the length of time people spend waiting, they manage the aesthetic for people whom are not interested in the attraction but love the theming and atmosphere of the park, and they keep the line managed to a level for the people who will wait :30 for an experience but won't wait :45.

In the end, it's a better experience all the way around.