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I can't wrap my head around rider swap...

jade karl pavilion

New Member
Original Poster
#1
I'm not sure why I get so confused about this process. Please let me know if I have this correct. (My wife and I will be traveling with a 4yo and 8yo for clarification).

We all have FPs for ride ABC.
We approach the greeting Cast Member at the ride and ask to use Rider Switch.
My wife and my 8yo choose to go first (Party 1), I will go second (Party 2).
The Cast Member scans my (Party 2) Magic Band to assign me a rider switch pass.
Party 1 gets in the FP line and Party 2 goes to a designated area outside the attraction and waits.
After Party 1 rides, they collect my 4yo.
I scan my (Party 2) Magic Band and get in the FP line.
After Party 2 rides, everybody reunites and lives happily ever after.

Is this correct? If we're all going to wait in the FP line anyway, why even get a rider switch pass? Why doesn't Party 2 just wait until Party 1 is done riding and then goes in after (as long as it's obviously within the FP time window). What benefit does rider swap give us? Just the ability to extend out our FP window an extra hour?

When we used rider swap long ago, we would all wait in line until we were up to the ride and one parent would ride while the other stepped aside. When the first parent got off the ride, the next parent would get right on and there was no extra waiting time. I suppose all rides may not be able to work this way since the ride exit isn't always in the same location as the entrance. And maybe things have changed considerably since then.

Any clarification anyone can give is appreciated. Thanks!
 
#2
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I'm not sure why I get so confused about this process. Please let me know if I have this correct. (My wife and I will be traveling with a 4yo and 8yo for clarification).

We all have FPs for ride ABC.
We approach the greeting Cast Member at the ride and ask to use Rider Switch.
My wife and my 8yo choose to go first (Party 1), I will go second (Party 2).
The Cast Member scans my (Party 2) Magic Band to assign me a rider switch pass.
Party 1 gets in the FP line and Party 2 goes to a designated area outside the attraction and waits.
After Party 1 rides, they collect my 4yo.
I scan my (Party 2) Magic Band and get in the FP line.
After Party 2 rides, everybody reunites and lives happily ever after.

Is this correct? If we're all going to wait in the FP line anyway, why even get a rider switch pass? Why doesn't Party 2 just wait until Party 1 is done riding and then goes in after (as long as it's obviously within the FP time window). What benefit does rider swap give us? Just the ability to extend out our FP window an extra hour?

When we used rider swap long ago, we would all wait in line until we were up to the ride and one parent would ride while the other stepped aside. When the first parent got off the ride, the next parent would get right on and there was no extra waiting time. I suppose all rides may not be able to work this way since the ride exit isn't always in the same location as the entrance. And maybe things have changed considerably since then.

Any clarification anyone can give is appreciated. Thanks![
I'm not sure why I get so confused about this process. Please let me know if I have this correct. (My wife and I will be traveling with a 4yo and 8yo for clarification).

We all have FPs for ride ABC.
We approach the greeting Cast Member at the ride and ask to use Rider Switch.
My wife and my 8yo choose to go first (Party 1), I will go second (Party 2).
The Cast Member scans my (Party 2) Magic Band to assign me a rider switch pass.
Party 1 gets in the FP line and Party 2 goes to a designated area outside the attraction and waits.
After Party 1 rides, they collect my 4yo.
I scan my (Party 2) Magic Band and get in the FP line.
After Party 2 rides, everybody reunites and lives happily ever after.

Is this correct? If we're all going to wait in the FP line anyway, why even get a rider switch pass? Why doesn't Party 2 just wait until Party 1 is done riding and then goes in after (as long as it's obviously within the FP time window). What benefit does rider swap give us? Just the ability to extend out our FP window an extra hour?

When we used rider swap long ago, we would all wait in line until we were up to the ride and one parent would ride while the other stepped aside. When the first parent got off the ride, the next parent would get right on and there was no extra waiting time. I suppose all rides may not be able to work this way since the ride exit isn't always in the same location as the entrance. And maybe things have changed considerably since then.

Any clarification anyone can give is appreciated. Thanks!
i think it works like this

mom and 8yr old ride while dad and 4yr old wait in rider swap area

ride is over mom jumps off dad jumps on, 8yr old rides twice back to back.

i’ve never did it so i may be wrong
 
Last edited:

lazyboy97o

Well-Known Member
#3
I'm not sure why I get so confused about this process. Please let me know if I have this correct. (My wife and I will be traveling with a 4yo and 8yo for clarification).

We all have FPs for ride ABC.
We approach the greeting Cast Member at the ride and ask to use Rider Switch.
My wife and my 8yo choose to go first (Party 1), I will go second (Party 2).
The Cast Member scans my (Party 2) Magic Band to assign me a rider switch pass.
Party 1 gets in the FP line and Party 2 goes to a designated area outside the attraction and waits.
After Party 1 rides, they collect my 4yo.
I scan my (Party 2) Magic Band and get in the FP line.
After Party 2 rides, everybody reunites and lives happily ever after.

Is this correct? If we're all going to wait in the FP line anyway, why even get a rider switch pass? Why doesn't Party 2 just wait until Party 1 is done riding and then goes in after (as long as it's obviously within the FP time window). What benefit does rider swap give us? Just the ability to extend out our FP window an extra hour?
It is pointless if you have FastPass+ for the attraction. It’s for attractions where you do not have FastPass+ that you want to do the whole scanning situation you described. Party 1 will wait in the Stand By queue while Party 2 does something else (you don’t have to wait in a designated area). Then after Party 1 rides, Party 2 enters the FastPass+ queue. You’re also allowed some overlap in groups, so your eldest could ride twice.
 
#4
It is pointless if you have FastPass+ for the attraction. It’s for attractions where you do not have FastPass+ that you want to do the whole scanning situation you described. Party 1 will wait in the Stand By queue while Party 2 does something else (you don’t have to be in a certain place). Then after Party 1 rides, Party 2 enters the FastPass+ queue.
now im confused...so party 1 (mom & 8yr old) can ride lets say space mountain while party 2 (dad & 4 yr old) ride Dumbo...then when either ride is over they wait for the other party to “swap” places? so mom then gets on Dumbo and dad rides space mountain?
 

nickys

Well-Known Member
#5
Remember the whole rider swap was set up in the days before pe-booking FPs. And it was designed to allow both parents to ride if they had a wee one who couldn’t.

You can use it with or without FPs.

So in your case, you all approach the CM at the entrance to the ride and ask for a rider switch. They will ask who is riding in group 2, and scan their bands adding the rider switch to it. In this case, if Mom and DS8 are riding first, then Dad and DS8 can ride in group 2. You then go off with the little one and do something, whilst Mom and DS8 ride. Then you return with DS8 and scan in for an FP as normal.

If you have FPs, your return time will be a one hour window from when the first group will expect to get off the ride. So for FoP the window will start about 30 minutes from “now”, for most rides it will start in about 10 minutes. The real benefit here is that the riding child(ren) get to ride with both parents. Up to 3 people can ride in the second group.

If you don’t have FPs, then the return window will be roughly the posted stand-by wait time. The benefit here is that the second group effectively get FPs.

There used to be certain rides where everyone needed FPs to get a rider switch. 7dmt and FoP were the most common ones. But this was inconsistent, it seemed to be up to the CMs on duty. Since the electronic system started, there don’t seem to be many reports of this happening. So you and DS4 could have another FP booked, say Dumbo at the same time as Mom and DS8 have FPs for 7dmt.


No one without an FP or who is too small to ride will be allowed in the FP line. So it isn’t like the Universal way of doing things, where you swap out at the point of boarding the ride. It is all done before the first group get in line, and the CMs need to see the little one not riding.

In theory if someone is too afraid to ride, a rider switch can be given. But I wouldn’t bank on this, especially if they are technically old enough to wait alone - the CM may well say everyone needs an FP to get a rider switch in this case.
 

nickys

Well-Known Member
#7
It is pointless if you have FastPass+ for the attraction. It’s for attractions where you do not have FastPass+ that you want to do the whole scanning situation you described. Party 1 will wait in the Stand By queue while Party 2 does something else (you don’t have to wait in a designated area). Then after Party 1 rides, Party 2 enters the FastPass+ queue. You’re also allowed some overlap in groups, so your eldest could ride twice.
Not pointless, the child gets to ride with both Mom and Dad. And it can technically double the number of FPs you can get - as long as the CMs allow it.
 

nickys

Well-Known Member
#8
now im confused...so party 1 (mom & 8yr old) can ride lets say space mountain while party 2 (dad & 4 yr old) ride Dumbo...then when either ride is over they wait for the other party to “swap” places? so mom then gets on Dumbo and dad rides space mountain?
Rider switch isn’t given on all rides. I don’t think Dumbo would be included because you could take a baby on the ride. But certainly the 1year old could ride Dumbo with one parent with an FP, whilst everyone else gets to ride Space Mountain. One parent would have to entertain the little one whilst the second group ride Space.
 

jade karl pavilion

New Member
Original Poster
#9
There used to be certain rides where everyone needed FPs to get a rider switch. 7dmt and FoP were the most common ones. But this was inconsistent, it seemed to be up to the CMs on duty. Since the electronic system started, there don’t seem to be many reports of this happening. So you and DS4 could have another FP booked, say Dumbo at the same time as Mom and DS8 have FPs for 7dmt.
Chatting with a Disney Cast Member, they said that FPs are required in order to do rider switch. Also, it seems that there is a general (fairness?) consensus that every person should have FPs for the ride we are using the switch for. I am doing it mainly to be better safe than sorry in case we end up getting a cast member that is a stickler for the rules and then we won't both be able to ride.

So it seems like if we follow the rules to all have FPs and to be fair to other folks that don't have younger children, it makes rider switch pointless like I mentioned previously?
 

Gitson Shiggles

There was me, that is Mickey, and my three droogs
Premium Member
#10
now im confused...so party 1 (mom & 8yr old) can ride lets say space mountain while party 2 (dad & 4 yr old) ride Dumbo...then when either ride is over they wait for the other party to “swap” places? so mom then gets on Dumbo and dad rides space mountain?
Rider Swap swaps riders for the same ride. It does not mean you swap rides (e.g., Dumbo and 7DMT).
 

nickys

Well-Known Member
#11
Rider Swap swaps riders for the same ride. It does not mean you swap rides (e.g., Dumbo and 7DMT).
I think he meant he and toddler get FPs for Dumbo while Mom and DS8 get FPs for Space. And then both get rider switch. That won’t work for 2reasons: 1) I don’t think Dumbo does TS and 2) Even if they chose another ride, the CMs would need to see the whole group before group 1 enter the line. Since they can’t be in two places at once it doesn’t work!
 
#12
I think he meant he and toddler get FPs for Dumbo while Mom and DS8 get FPs for Space. And then both get rider switch. That won’t work for 2reasons: 1) I don’t think Dumbo does TS and 2) Even if they chose another ride, the CMs would need to see the whole group before group 1 enter the line. Since they can’t be in two places at once it doesn’t work!
not to steal this thread but how does swap work with a single child? Say mom and DD2 ride Dumbo but dad also wants to ride with her does DD2 stay on the ride when it is over, mom jumps off and dad jumps on? thus giving DD2 back to back rides?
 

lazyboy97o

Well-Known Member
#13
Chatting with a Disney Cast Member, they said that FPs are required in order to do rider switch. Also, it seems that there is a general (fairness?) consensus that every person should have FPs for the ride we are using the switch for. I am doing it mainly to be better safe than sorry in case we end up getting a cast member that is a stickler for the rules and then we won't both be able to ride.

So it seems like if we follow the rules to all have FPs and to be fair to other folks that don't have younger children, it makes rider switch pointless like I mentioned previously?
That’s not a rule outside of select circumstances. Just go ask the greeter at the Stand-By entrance to do child swap.

not to steal this thread but how does swap work with a single child? Say mom and DD2 ride Dumbo but dad also wants to ride with her does DD2 stay on the ride when it is over, mom jumps off and dad jumps on? thus giving DD2 back to back rides?
It wouldn’t be allowed with Dumbo. All three would just ride together. The whole point of child swap is for swapping the child who cannot ride.
 

CaptainAmerica

Well-Known Member
#14
now im confused...so party 1 (mom & 8yr old) can ride lets say space mountain while party 2 (dad & 4 yr old) ride Dumbo...then when either ride is over they wait for the other party to “swap” places? so mom then gets on Dumbo and dad rides space mountain?
Dumbo has nothing to do with it. It only applies to Space Mountain.

8 year old can ride again with dad if he or she wants to.
 

jade karl pavilion

New Member
Original Poster
#15
The whole point of child swap is for swapping the child who cannot ride.
But you can still swap without a rider switch. I.e. one parent watches the little one while the other rides and then switches when done. This can be done with the standard lines or FP lines. So how does this magical rider switch pass that gets added to my Magic Band give me special powers to accomplish things that no mere mortal can accomplish without it? :)
 

lazyboy97o

Well-Known Member
#16
But you can still swap without a rider switch. I.e. one parent watches the little one while the other rides and then switches when done. This can be done with the standard lines or FP lines. So how does this magical rider switch pass that gets added to my Magic Band give me special powers to accomplish things that no mere mortal can accomplish without it? :)
I don’t understand what you’re asking.
 

nickys

Well-Known Member
#17
But you can still swap without a rider switch. I.e. one parent watches the little one while the other rides and then switches when done. This can be done with the standard lines or FP lines. So how does this magical rider switch pass that gets added to my Magic Band give me special powers to accomplish things that no mere mortal can accomplish without it? :)
If you have an older child and a younger one, then the older child gets to ride twice, once with each parent.

And with some careful planning both parents can get in rides which neither child will do? Say you think 7yo won’t like FoP, get Mom an FP for it whilst Dad and kids get Navii. Get a RS for Dad only for FoP, then Dad takes kids to ride Navii whilst Mom rides FoP; switch and Mom takes kids for an ice cream or a stand-by ride somewhere.

If you just have a baby, both parents get to ride, albeit alone. And you can double up the FPs, since in the vast majority of cases it won’t matter.
 

jade karl pavilion

New Member
Original Poster
#18
I don’t understand what you’re asking.
Pretend Rider Switch doesn't even exist. I can still take turns with my wife watching the little one and riding rides separately. So what does Rider Switch give us that we can't do already?

I think previously, the Rider Switch passes were good all day, so it offered more flexibility (basically a FP that could be used all day long?). But now that it needs to be used within an hour, does it make it even worth it to request it?

I can see one benefit from nickys post above saying that my older one can go in the FP line twice so essentially he would get 1 free FP, but other than that, I still don't see much benefit to it unless I use it to skirt around the FP system.
 

lazyboy97o

Well-Known Member
#19
Pretend Rider Switch doesn't even exist. I can still take turns with my wife watching the little one and riding rides separately. So what does Rider Switch give us that we can't do already?

I think previously, the Rider Switch passes were good all day, so it offered more flexibility (basically a FP that could be used all day long?). But now that it needs to be used within an hour, does it make it even worth it to request it?

I can see one benefit from nickys post above saying that my older one can go in the FP line twice so essentially he would get 1 free FP, but other than that, I still don't see much benefit to it unless I use it to skirt around the FP system.
The benefit is not having to individually wait in the Stand By queue. Whoever is riding second gets to use the FastPass+ queue.
 

trojanjustin

Well-Known Member
#20
Pretend Rider Switch doesn't even exist. I can still take turns with my wife watching the little one and riding rides separately. So what does Rider Switch give us that we can't do already?

I think previously, the Rider Switch passes were good all day, so it offered more flexibility (basically a FP that could be used all day long?). But now that it needs to be used within an hour, does it make it even worth it to request it?

I can see one benefit from nickys post above saying that my older one can go in the FP line twice so essentially he would get 1 free FP, but other than that, I still don't see much benefit to it unless I use it to skirt around the FP system.
No, that is just incorrect. Rider Swaps were really more prominent before FP/FP+, but they are still handy...

Let's say you're a family of four who wants to ride FoP but don't have FP+. Two of you get in line to ride, while one parent and the too-small child wait at the exit. Without a rider swap pass, parent 1 would have to wait in the entire standby queue while parent 2 waited outside. After the ride, parent 2 would have to wait in that entire queue, essentially doubling the wait time. Instead the swap pass gives parent 2 an instant Fastpass, so they may enjoy the attraction since they already technically 'waited' once, even though it wasn't actually in the queue.

With FP+, there is a question of what happens if TWO of the four members have a Fastpass for that attraction. Let's say Parent 1 takes the child on FoP via FP+, while Parent 2 (plus the too-small child) have a Fastpass+ for Na'vi. Some attractions will allow Parent 2 to get a rider swap pass, without originally having a FP+ to that attraction.
 
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