Disney finally announced when the Genie will emerge from its magical digital lamp – Tuesday, October 19th, is now certified as doomsday, at least if you work in Disney IT or don’t want to run into 1,000 vloggers. I’m not sure which would be worse. If I were working in the IT division, I would probably come down with “c*vid” that week. The website can supply the necessary documentation. I’ve been getting out of writing these blog posts for years doing the same thing. Jada Pinkett Smith must be exuberant as she’ll reunited with the sort-of live action blue ghoul, Will Smith, from the film, but there is only one true genie. And he’s the late and great Robin Williams.
The Chapek “led” company also confirmed which attractions will be part of regular Genie+, and which attractions will be a la carte, which must be French for, “costs extra.” We had been calling these attractions, which aren’t part of Genie+ whatsoever, “Individual Attraction Lightning Lane selections,” but “a la carte” is easier to type, and sounds more bourgeoisie, so we will just use Disney’s nomenclature from now on, so there isn’t any (more) confusion about this thing. Remember, we’re expecting people to be able to purchase the a la care selections without also springing for the cost of Genie+ on that date. And if you’re Park Hopping, you can make your a la cart selections in two separate Parks, so you could theoretically book Flight of Passage and Rise of the Resistance on the same day. What a world that would be.
In this post, we’ll discuss which attractions are likely worth the extra cost of paying a la carte Lightning Lane Prices. We’ll also briefly discuss which attractions are likely worth using Lightning Lane on via standard Genie+, if any, in priority order. The latter priority list will likely look similar to or the same as the FastPass+ priority list we used to use, since Lightning Lane is basically the same system as FastPass+, only for money! Yeah! (We stockholders still aren’t getting paid dividends *womp *womp.* Maybe by The Mandalorian season 5 the company will be profitable. Just don’t ask the guy who actually played Darth Vader in Star Wars and has seen about negative four Lightning Lane Passes out of that role over the years. Read your contracts, kids. If you missed our detailed Animal Kingdom series, complete with well over a hundred pictures inside the Park, plus plenty of charts and graphs backing up our numerous claims, you can check out Parts 1, 2, 3, and 4.
We’ll take a (surprisingly brief) moment to check in on wait times and whether they’ve increased now that the 50th anniversary proceedings are underway. The Disney Genie+, which is the company’s new version of paid FastPass, is yet to be unveiled. But I suppose when you are stuck inside of a magical lamp for a few thousand years, a couple more weeks probably doesn’t register as being too much more punishment. Especially when we’ll be the ones getting punished once it’s finally unveiled.
We can’t say definitively that the Genie technology isn’t ready (it’s not), or if Disney doesn’t want the beginning of its celebration of 150+ new food items marred by that pesky 50th anniversary that’s basically a celebration of what’s launched on Disney+ in the last two years, but the Genie crashes harder than Baloo during KiteTails. We’re still waiting to see how much the reintroduction of priority boarding affects wait times, or what the Individual Attraction Lightning Lane selections are at each Park. But we can at least reestablish where we’re at, so we have a solid baseline on where we are currently.
We can say with certainty that wait times remain low as we head into what are traditionally two of the busier weeks of the fall with the holiday weekend and fall breaks in parts of the south. Here’s a graph that shows the weekly average among our usual 17 attractions at Magic Kingdom since the Park reopened in July of 2020:
We continue from *checks watch* Part One, Part Two, and Part Three, as we ideally finish up another Animal Kingdom series. I know there is some frustration with the lack of future guidance, but there is not much the website can do before Genie+ goes live and we see what kind of Lightning Lane adoption rates we’re looking at, what priority boarding will do to increase wait times, what effect early and late entry to the Parks will have on crowd flow, how much the Individual Lightning Lane Attraction selections cost, what the rides will even be, or when any of that will actually debut.
Disney likely wanted to show off the Genie’s capabilities at this weekend’s 50th anniversary media/travel agent extravaganza that’s only costing you money while no-names dine on shrimp and watch the one time Harmonious actually worked from their private walled off vantage points. Those “straight on” views are not a coincidence as “media” set up their point and shoots and try to figure out how to set it to video mode.
We continue from Part One, where we reacquainted ourselves with what to expect from Early Entry, and the 50th Most Magical Legacy Celebration Marvel The Mandalorian Pixar Soul Disney World Anniversary. That isn’t the name of the celebration, but I have 18 months to get it right, and I plan to take each and every day to get one step closer. Actually, we’re probably here from Part Two.
Here’s a handy banner reminder of the actual name:
That doesn’t seem that difficult to remember, so we may be able to get it right in a mere 12-14 months. But we both know you still call it MGM Studios and Downtown Disney, so cut me a little slack here. I am one of you after all.
We continue from Part One of this series, where we reacquainted ourselves with what to expect from Disney’s 50 Year Happiest Magical Legacy Celebration Brought to You By Lyft, or whatever they are calling the 50th Anniversary based on where the darts lodged into the board this time around. I’m partial to Disney’s 50-Year Marvel Pixar Star Wars Empty Your Wallet Live Action Remake Spectacular 2, but for some reason they voted me off the Board of Directors during the last fiscal year. But I’ll make my triumphant return, even if it is via hostile takeover that has absolutely nothing to do with stock options. This isn’t a threat of violence. I’m just going to ask nicely and flash my Pixie Dust Pass. “I’m an Annual Passholder!”
Fortunately, we’re afforded an opportunity to enjoy Disney’s Animal Kingdom at the same time, although perhaps less so here in Windtraders in Pandora, where you’ll only find about a third of the merchandise as you might have seen when the new Land opened. On the plus side, the pathway to the exit is far more open.