Best way to get to a park early with no car?

mousedroid

Member
Original Poster
Hi. My finacee and I are heading to Disney World in May. We've heard that you have to get to Hollywood Studious crazy-early to be able to get on Smuggler's Run or Rise of the Resistance in Galaxy's Edge.

The problem is, we are staying at Pop Century Resort and we won't have a vehicle on the premises. I don't believe the buses or Skyliner run as early as we would need to head to the park (between 5 and 6 AM), so what would you say is the best way to get there? Taxi?

Thanks in advance!
 

Weather_Lady

Well-Known Member
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Hi. My finacee and I are heading to Disney World in May. We've heard that you have to get to Hollywood Studious crazy-early to be able to get on Smuggler's Run or Rise of the Resistance in Galaxy's Edge.

The problem is, we are staying at Pop Century Resort and we won't have a vehicle on the premises. I don't believe the buses or Skyliner run as early as we would need to head to the park (between 5 and 6 AM), so what would you say is the best way to get there? Taxi?

Thanks in advance!
Hello and welcome! FWIW, you do NOT need to get to Hollywood Studios crazy early. You just need to be inside the park -- tapped through the gates with phone at the ready -- before official park opening time, as boarding groups don't become available until the exact moment of official park opening, and crowds are held on the main drag right up until that time. Getting there earlier than that may put you toward the front of the crowd if your plan is to rope drop Slinky Dog Dash or the Millennium Falcon (for which you can now, as of today, get Fastpasses, so if you want one, you'll need to get on that right this minute!), but there's no advantage to arriving early in terms of Rise of the Resistance. The person who gets there 3 hours before the park opened and the person who strolled in 3 minutes before opening time will have the same chance to try and get a boarding group via the My Disney Experience app -- although the one with the most accurate clock, fastest phone and fastest fingers will have an advantage.

Onsite transportation (Skyliner gondolas excepted) begins running about 2 hours before park opening time. (Disney's official word is "1 hour" before park opening time, but in actual practice, they start much earlier.) If you ever get antsy, there's always rideshares available, or even Minnie Vans.

Of course, this advice assumes that when you visit four months from now, boarding groups will be the operative procedure. That may change at any time: keep an eye on these forums for updates.
 
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mousedroid

Member
Original Poster
Thank you for the info, Weather_Lady. So if I understand this correctly...
  1. Folks arrive at the park prior to opening and stand in a crowd outside the "turnstiles".
  2. At some point prior to the official park opening time, the crowd is allowed to scan their magic bands and move through the turnstiles, but not yet enter the park.
  3. The park officially opens at 9 AM (or whenever).
  4. As long as you have scanned your magic band and gone through the turnstile by 9 AM, you can use the app to try to get a boarding group.
Does that sound right? If so, I guess the only risk to arriving later is not being able to get through the turnstiles before 9 AM.

Once everyone in your group (in my cases two of us) is through the turnstiles, does each person in the group have to try to get a boarding group, or can one person get a boarding group for the whole party if they are "linked"? In other words, my fiancee and I are liked through My Disney Experience, so does my registering for a boarding group get her registered too, or does she also have to start frantically clicking at 9 AM? :)

Thanks again!
 

Rob562

Well-Known Member
Once everyone in your group (in my cases two of us) is through the turnstiles, does each person in the group have to try to get a boarding group, or can one person get a boarding group for the whole party if they are "linked"? In other words, my fiancee and I are liked through My Disney Experience, so does my registering for a boarding group get her registered too, or does she also have to start frantically clicking at 9 AM? :)

Thanks again!
If you're able to make FastPasses for someone, you're linked and are also able to secure them a Boarding Group.

-Rob
 

Eamethyst

Active Member
Hi. My finacee and I are heading to Disney World in May. We've heard that you have to get to Hollywood Studious crazy-early to be able to get on Smuggler's Run or Rise of the Resistance in Galaxy's Edge.

The problem is, we are staying at Pop Century Resort and we won't have a vehicle on the premises. I don't believe the buses or Skyliner run as early as we would need to head to the park (between 5 and 6 AM), so what would you say is the best way to get there? Taxi?

Thanks in advance!
You are not able to enter any of the parks that early. The entrances are closed to the public that early. Disney allows their visitors to enter 30 mins before the scheduled opening time. Vistors are allowed to enter Hollywood Boulevard. Disney has transportation to all of the parks, resorts, hotels, Disney springs.
 

mousedroid

Member
Original Poster
You are not able to enter any of the parks that early. The entrances are closed to the public that early. Disney allows their visitors to enter 30 mins before the scheduled opening time. Vistors are allowed to enter Hollywood Boulevard. Disney has transportation to all of the parks, resorts, hotels, Disney springs.
Understood, and thank you. My concern is that if Disney begins to allow the crowd through the turnstiles 30 minutes prior to the park opening and there is a large crowd, if you are at the back of that crowd, you may not get through the turnstiles prior to the park opening, which would kill your chances of getting a "boarding party" for RotR.

That's why we are thinking of getting there more than an hour in advance of the park opening - so we're not at the back of the line.
 

Weather_Lady

Well-Known Member
Understood, and thank you. My concern is that if Disney begins to allow the crowd through the turnstiles 30 minutes prior to the park opening and there is a large crowd, if you are at the back of that crowd, you may not get through the turnstiles prior to the park opening, which would kill your chances of getting a "boarding party" for RotR.

That's why we are thinking of getting there more than an hour in advance of the park opening - so we're not at the back of the line.
For what it's worth, when we were there 3 weeks ago (President's Day break week), we rope dropped HS twice. We arrived around 7-7:15am (for 8:00am opens) and in both cases, the front gates had just begun admitting guests, and were allowing them to congregate not only on the main street, but further along (right up to the attraction entrances), where cast members had set up separate queues for people heading to particular spots.

Even though we were arriving on the heels of the pre-opening crowd, in both cases it didn't take us more than 10-15 minutes to tap into the park (that was with bag check, as we had bags with us the first day, or without, as we went bagless the second time). While it feels like forever when you're inching forward in that line to tap in, the lines really move pretty efficiently.
 

bunnyman

Well-Known Member
Family member was staying at an All Star in January, and had no problem using internal transportation to get to HS in time to get into a boarding group.
 

mousedroid

Member
Original Poster
The other thing factoring into my concern over getting to the park early is that we are going on May 4th. For anyone who doesn't know, May the fourth is unofficially known as "Star Wars Day," which makes me think the HS and Galaxy's Edge will be particularly crowded that day.

I was however able to reserve a FP for Smuggler's Run even though that's the second day of our trip, so fingers crossed for RotR Boarding Passes too.
 

LizzyDragon

New Member
Understood, and thank you. My concern is that if Disney begins to allow the crowd through the turnstiles 30 minutes prior to the park opening and there is a large crowd, if you are at the back of that crowd, you may not get through the turnstiles prior to the park opening, which would kill your chances of getting a "boarding party" for RotR.

That's why we are thinking of getting there more than an hour in advance of the park opening - so we're not at the back of the line.
When I did RotR in February, I rolled into the parking lot at 7:30am for an 8am open. I was able to clear security, tap in and was waiting in the crowd outside Toy Story Land by 7:50am.

That said, this was pre-covid- any additional health screenings or new procedures may add a few minutes to getting in. I wouldn't try getting to the park much more than 45 minutes in advance- Disney is good about moving the crowd into the park, and getting there much earlier means you're standing around with nothing to do.
 
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