Genie+ is one of the newest updates in maximizing your visit to Walt Disney World. This optional upgrade, which does come at a cost, lets you jump ahead of the line for many popular attractions. But which rides and experiences should you reserve via Genie Plus? Well, in this article, I’m going to share with you the best Genie Plus rides at Magic Kingdom, which will hopefully help you make an informed decision.
Best Genie Plus Rides at Magic Kingdom
Let’s begin with Space Mountain, which is a Disney classic.
#1 – Space Mountain
Space Mountain is one of the most popular attractions at Disney World. This space-themed roller coaster consistently has some of the highest wait times at Magic Kingdom.
Unfortunately, the queue in Space Mountain has been lacking for some time. Before the COVID-19 pandemic, the line had games you could play against other guests while waiting in line, which helped pass the time. Now, waiting in line at Space Mountain is more tedious than entertaining since Disney removed that experience. I prefer to skip the wait and head right to what I am there for—the thrills of rocketing through space.
Genie+ passes may be hard to come by. If classic attractions and roller coasters are on your list, I suggest booking your time as soon as possible.
#2 – Splash Mountain
Another popular attraction, especially in the summer months, is the ride that takes you into the world of Br’er Rabbit and Br’er Bear: Splash Mountain. While this ride is refreshing, the queue is one you can avoid. The switchbacks have some quaint scenery and quirky signs, especially compared to Space Mountain, but the twang of country music can get a little old if you’re in a 75-minute wait.
Splash Mountain is also seeing a retheme to a Tiana-based ride, and many people are trying to visit the Laughing Place one more time before the new version opens, so wait times are higher.
#3 – Jungle Cruise
Who has two thumbs and loves dad jokes? It’s me. This punny adventure with your Skipper takes you through the wonders of Africa and Asia, where you can see wildlife and a story involving a group of explorers whose trip has taken an unfortunate turn.
While wait times used to be lower, the attraction has seen some updates and new theming which has everyone buzzing about this amusing ride. You can likely save upwards of 90 minutes with a Genie+ booking.
Big Thunder Mountain Railroad is considered the “wildest ride in the wilderness” and is a great family-friendly roller coaster that is sure to please. We’ve noticed that this attraction can reach up to 40 to 50 minutes in the summer.
Some aspects of the queue are interactive and fun, such as detonating the dynamite along the ride track, but not all of the elements are available right now. But, if you are not a fan of standing in the sun or prefer not to feel sandwiched during those busier wait times, then Genie+ might be a good option for you.
#5 – Festival of Fantasy Parade
I love parades. But, what I don’tlove is trying to find a spot for them. The current parade offering at Magic Kingdom, the Festival of Fantasy, is popular due to its performers, catchy song, and the giant Maleficent dragon. Some people will wait over an hour for this show!
The parade travels from Frontierland by Splash Mountain through Liberty Square and over to the Fire House on Main Street, USA. If you’re like me and prefer maximizing your time in the park by riding Haunted Mansion (over and over), eating churros, and not waiting for a parade, then booking Genie+ can help save you precious time.
#6 – Meeting Mickey Mouse
Is a visit to Magic Kingdom complete without saying hello to the big cheese himself? Meeting Mickey Mouse is a typical bucket list item, especially if it is your first visit. But, the wait times can be a little long for little ones (upwards of 90 minutes). On busy days, such as summertime or the holidays, the Genie+ passes are booked quickly. But, when I last visited, there were still spots open throughout the day.
If you feel meeting Mickey is vital to your trip, then I suggest looking for availability after completing your absolute must-dos. You might be able to sneak this meet and greet in during peak park times, like lunch or dinner time, without Genie+.
#7 – Meeting Princesses
At Magic Kingdom, you can currently meet two separate groups of princesses. First, you can meet Cinderella and a visiting princess or Tiana and a visiting princess. The visiting princess can vary. When I was there last, Rapunzel made an appearance with Tiana. Typical wait times vary from 30 to 60 minutes for princess visits.
While this might not be on everyone’s list, similar to meeting Mickey Mouse, the Genie+ windows can book quickly during peak seasons. If you or a little princess or princess in your party wants to meet these royal characters, and the trip would be ruinous if not, then consider booking this experience to save some time.
#8 – Peter Pan’s Flight
Peter Pan’s Flight is an attraction at Magic Kingdom that often sees high wait times. This fantastical trip through London and into Neverland is less than a minute long, but I’ve seen people wait in 90-minute queues. Yes, this ride is a cute, classic Disney ride, but is the time spent waiting worth the amount of time on the ride?
The saving grace is that the queue has seen some updates. The line is nice because it takes you further into the home of the Darling family. It has elements with Tinkerbell flying through the room and the interactive shadows. So, there are still fun aspects to the wait if you decide not to book this attraction through Genie+.
I enjoy Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin. It’s fun to battle your buddy in this intergalactic shooting-style game in an epic showdown.
The queue can start outside depending on the wait, which is nice to feel the Tomorrowland ambiance, and then you head inside, where Buzz is waiting to send you on your mission. While it is neat to see an animatronic Buzz Lightyear overall, the queue is lacking and can get a little tiresome with the lights and sirens. The wait can be long – I’ve seen times up to an hour. You can still see the famous Space Ranger in Lightning Lane, so I suggest skipping the rest and heading straight for the ride.
#10 – Pirates of the Caribbean
Honestly, this ride tied on the list with the Haunted Mansion. But, the Pirates of the Caribbean edges the Haunted Mansion out by a little because it does not have an interactive queue like its ghoulish partner. If the wait is longer than 30 minutes on Pirates of the Caribbean, see if there is a Genie+ time available. You’ll still enjoy all the theming and fun this classic ride offers while saving a little time in your day.
How Genie+ Works
Genie+ goes beyond the basics of the My Disney Experience app and gives you a personalized itinerary for your day based on interests chosen upon purchase. You tell Genie what you’re interested in, whether you want to see shows or book a dining reservation, and a list shows everything from wait times to when you should place your mobile order. You must have a theme park ticket and a reservation for the park if you want to use Genie+.
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Genie+ is $15 per day per guest. So, if you are in a group of four, you’re paying $60. Individual Lightning Lanes are an additional cost and range between $10 to $20 based on the day and ride. For example, an Individual Lightning Lane for Seven Dwarfs Mine Train on Labor Day weekend is $12.
Do note that prices are always subject to change at Disney World.
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Similarities to FastPass+
For those who remember, Disney used to have a system called FastPass+. At Disney World, you could book up to three attractions up to 60 days in advance. You would book your ride in a specific window and return to the queue when your time showed up.
Sound familiar? Genie+ offers a similar experience, where you can book an attraction on the day of your visit to pass through the line within your chosen window. It’s worth noting that you may still have a bit of a wait, sometimes 5 to 10 minutes, depending on the ride.
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Differences to FastPass+
There are many differences between Genie+ to FastPass+, and we could write a whole article about them. But, the top three differences are the cost, booking window, and personalization.
FastPass+ was a free service to anyone who had a Disney World ticket. You could make your three choices all at once and then book more after you finish those first three. Genie+ is a paid service, and you need to pay for each person in your group that wants to use it. FastPass+ also used to have kiosks throughout the park to help you make selections, but now you can only access them through the My Disney Experience app.
The booking window is vastly different from FastPass+ to Genie+. With Genie+, you can only purchase it on the day of your park visit at midnight, and your booking window opens at 7:00 a.m.
You can only choose one attraction, one time per day with Genie+. You can choose another experience after you check in to that first choice or two hours after the park opens. For FastPass+, you set your three rides up to 60 days in advance and could rebook rides. Disney changes the Disney+ rules frequently, so it’s worth looking for updates closer to your trip date.
Genie+ prides itself on offering you a completely personalized experience. It will show you a list of recommended activities to do throughout the day. For example, when I mentioned I wanted to see the shows at Magic Kingdom during my last trip, the app provided more detail about showtimes and experiences like cavalcades. It will also show you a park map based on your chosen offerings and reservations. FastPass+ did not have that type of customization, which made you rely more heavily upon your research before your visit.
Waiting in lines at Magic Kingdom can quickly take up most of your time. There are pros and cons to the program. For me, the benefit was riding almost every ride at Magic Kingdom without a long wait. I understand that not everyone wants to pay for Genie+, and it’s not a requirement for you to have a great time. But, if you are at Disney World primarily for rides, this list of the best Genie+ rides at Magic Kingdom can help you prioritize your day.
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