Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run Wait Times from Galaxy’s Edge Opening Day

Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge opened with much fanfare yesterday at Disneyland, and by all accounts the reservation system Disneyland is using to allow access to this new Star Wars land from now through June 23rd is a huge success.

If you’re lucky enough to have a reservation for a four-hour visit to Galaxy’s Edge before it opens to the general public on June 24th, you might be wondering when is the best time to visit the only open ride in this new land, Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run.

Since we have a pretty keen interest in wait times here at RideMax, and thanks to the fact that Disney makes posted wait times available in their app, we tracked waits throughout the day yesterday, and the chart below reflects the result (click the image for a larger view).

Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run Wait Times on Opening Day

As you can see, the results here were pretty impressive, with wait times peaking at 2 hours right around 3:00pm — not bad for such a groundbreaking new addition to the park. It’s also pretty amazing that there were VERY LOW posted waits of only five minutes just before 11:00am, and ten minutes just before 8:00pm.

If you’re wondering what the orange lines on the chart represent, these are the times at which each of the reservation slots began. (The four-hour time slots overlapped by an hour on each end with the previous and next group to be admitted.) So guests holding reservations were assigned time slots beginning at 8am, 11am, 2pm, 5pm, and 8pm.

Looking at the chart, if you plan to visit the ride during the reservation phase, it’s pretty clear that the best time to get in line for this ride is just before the next group is to be admitted, or just before the three hour mark into your reserved time slot. (And if you’re a RideMax subscriber, we’ll have more specific advice for getting around the land in the RideMax “Tips & Hints” pages, which you’ll see on the main page after logging into RideMax.)

All in all, this is a pretty impressive set of wait times for the opening day of the largest Disneyland expansion in park history. Congratulations to the entire Disneyland operations team for making this such a huge success!

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IMPORTANT REMINDER: Reservations for Disneyland’s Galaxy’s Edge Open TOMORROW, May 2nd!

Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge will open May 31, 2019 at Disneyland, and Aug. 29, 2019 at Disney’s Hollywood Studios at Walt Disney World. (Photos courtesy of Disney.)

This post is a quick reminder that if you plan to visit Disneyland between May 31st and June 23rd, YOU WILL NEED A RESERVATION if you plan to visit the new Star Wars land, aka, Galaxy’s Edge.

Just as important, RESERVATIONS OPEN TOMORROW, MAY 2nd!

Given the anticipation for this new addition to Disneyland, our guess is that these reservations will sell out within minutes of becoming available. So be sure to act quickly if you’re visiting during this date range. The registration site will open on May 2nd at 8:00am PDT, and the site will start accepting reservations at 10:00am. You can read all about it on Disney’s site here.

If you plan to try and take advantage of this, be sure to set up your Disney account in advance. It also isn’t clear from their FAQ, but if you don’t yet have park tickets for your visit, we’d suggest buying them in advance via the Disney website or app, just in case you need an actual ticket number to secure your reservation.

Millennium Falcon is pictured under development for Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run at Stars Wars: Galaxy’s Edge.

For those of you using RideMax to plan your trip to Disneyland on these dates, given that your access to Star Wars Land (as it often seems to be called) will be restricted to a certain time slot, we recommend setting up a “break” in your RideMax plan to cover the time of your reservation. Just set the break location to “Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge,” and make the duration long enough to cover the time you expect to spend there.

Of course, if you plan to visit Disneyland after June 23rd, you don’t need to worry about reservations — you’ll just need to plan to arrive REALLY early in the morning if you want to visit Galaxy’s Edge. (This is a topic for another post!)

I hope this helps… and when it comes time to actually get those reservations, may your fingers be quick, and may the force be with you!

(Sorry — I couldn’t resist.)

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REMINDER: Yes, You CAN use Disneyland’s MaxPass System with RideMax!

In reviewing some recent customer support emails, it’s apparent that not everyone is aware that when you set up your RideMax plan for Disneyland and California Adventure, you can tell RideMax how you intend to make your FastPass reservations.

The FastPass options RideMax supports are:

  • You can use the traditional FastPass machines, located near each attraction which offers FastPass.
  • You can use the traditional FastPass machines, but rather than having your entire group walk to the machines, you will send a single “runner” from your group to pick them up for you (saving the extra walking for everyone else). And as an extra bonus, if you use this option, you can tell RideMax which (if any) attractions your runner is willing to skip while off gathering your FastPasses, possibly making an even more efficient plan for the rest of the group.
  • You can use the new MaxPass system.

I highlight this last option because, as I said, it appears that not everyone is aware of this.

Using MaxPass with RideMax

These options are found under the “FASTPASS Options” tab at the top of the main planning screen in RideMax, as shown in the picture above.

If you check the MaxPass option, RideMax will assume that you’ll be making your FastPass reservations from your phone, eliminating the time it would normally set aside to walk to and from the FastPass machines. It will also assume that you’ll only need to wait a maximum of 90 minutes after getting a FastPass before you can get your next FastPass, rather than the two-hour max for everyone else.

If you’re using RideMax to plan your visit but aren’t sure if you will use MaxPass or not, my suggestion is to create two versions of your plans, one with this option set, and another without. That way, when you’re actually at the park and are ready to decide whether you’ll purchase MaxPass or not, you’ll be set either way.

A final bonus to creating two plans this way is that you can also see how much time RideMax estimates you’ll save in waiting and/or walking with the use of MaxPass. I delve more into this comparison in a previous post, aptly titled, Disneyland’s MaxPass: Is It Worth It? Be sure to check this out if you’re on the fence regarding the extra cost for MaxPass.

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Disneyland’s MaxPass Popularity: An Upward Trend?

Disneyland - MaxPass or Traditional FastPass?
With the MaxPass system in full swing, how many guests are still using the traditional FastPass machines?

You may remember in a previous post that we examined¬†¬†Disneyland’s MaxPass system, using the plans created by RideMax customers to help us estimate how popular MaxPass might be among Disneyland guests. It’s been a month since that last post, so I thought it might be time to look at this again, to see if anything has changed recently.

As you’ll recall from my last post on this topic, up through April 7th, 48% of RideMax plans (which were still in the database and hadn’t been deleted) had been created with the MaxPass setting turned ON. There also seemed to be some seasonality to the data, with the low coming in October at 40% MaxPass use, and the high during the Christmas holiday period, at 60%.

It’s interesting to me that for plans created from April 8th until May 8th (again, of those which are still in the RideMax database),¬†57% were created with the MaxPass setting turned ON.

I’m a bit surprised by this number, since it’s a snapshot taken after the busy spring break period, when MaxPass use in RidMax plans was running at 55%. Even if you allow for some margin of error in the numbers, that the number has gone UP during a relatively quieter period at the park says something about the staying power of MaxPass.

One question for me is whether this upward move is a real trend. There may be an explanation for the numbers which I haven’t captured by taking such a high-level snapshot of the RideMax data. If you have any theories to explain the upward tick in usage, please share in the comments below.

In the meantime, at the very least it looks like MaxPass is a popular addition to Disneyland — and it may be getting even more popular as time goes on.

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Crunching the Numbers: How Popular is Disneyland’s MaxPass System?

Disneyland's MaxPass system in use

It’s no secret that if I had to choose between the FastPass+ system at Walt Disney World and the MaxPass system at Disneyland, I’d pick the Disneyland system as the hands-down winner. In fact, as I discussed in these pages recently, I consider Disneyland’s MaxPass system superior to Walt Disney World’s FastPass+ system in almost every possible way.

You might be wondering, though, just how popular is the MaxPass system among Disneyland guests? After all, MaxPass isn’t free — Disney charges $10 per-visitor, per-day to use the system, or $75 as an add-on to an annual pass.

Continue reading “Crunching the Numbers: How Popular is Disneyland’s MaxPass System?”

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