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VQ/BGs (Virtual Queues/Boarding Groups)... Yay or Nay? (Better alternatives?)

MisterPenguin

President of Animal Kingdom
Premium Member
Original Poster
This thread is for the discussion of whether BGs are a good or bad idea. When should FP be introduced if at all?

This is to keep this discussion out of the thread reporting on BG status.

Anyhoo... have fun. Here were my ideas on the subject...

I would think a lottery system in which every day you can put your group in for a chance "to board" seven days later with a portion set aside for resort guests that can put in for the lottery two days advance. If you "win" you receive a time to show up. Winners blacked out from winning again for a month.

Resort guest have access to the seven day and two day lotteries. Locals have access to the seven day lottery year round.

Not totally perfect, but very fair.

No problem of gate rushers trying to beat everyone else so they can ride. No promises to be broken about opening time. No need to open early unexpectedly. No system of "to the hardy go the spoils."

First-come-first-serve has issues:

1. Where do you put the thousands of people showing up earlier and earlier to beat out one another? What if that crowd is keeping the gondola from being unloaded? If you hold them in the park... what do you do with several thousand people in the park and not open any attractions for them? You open early... oops.. no, that would mean not opening at the time as advertised, and that would by lying. And guests would just show up even earlier the next day.​
2. 8-10 hour lines are fun to boast about, but they're a nightmare for guests... and for ops as they now have to manage that huge herd. Bathroom breaks, line-cutting and the ensuing fights, the need to get food and water to them so as not to have them pass out (for some folk).​
3. You're basically saying, "Hey kids, this ain't for you. It's for the adult nerds who can set up a base camp for eight hours." One may not like the part of the mantra "more family friendly"... but that is a significant part of Disney's bread and butter. So, this system excludes families with kids. "First to the gate" is fair... for people hardy enough to endure it.​

I still think a lottery is the way to go...

Indeed, this.

When you have more people wanting to ride it than it can handle, then there will be people who can't ride it. And no matter what system you use to determine who those losers will be, they will think the system unfair.

There is no perfectly fair way to handle this. Only systems that favor one group over another based on reasons for favoring those groups. The groups that get left out will argue that your priorities are wrong. And thus... no perfectly fair system that everyone will be happy with.

And, as @DarkMetroid567 mentioned, the system in place is to favor Operations. They schedule a known amount of guests that they presume they can handle, and if they can't, they get comped. Then they schedule a known amount of guests that they may not get to and call them "backup". If they don't get to them or only a part of them, they don't have to comp them because they're "backup."

They use a virtual electronic lottery system by having everyone slam a server all at the same time. Again, this is for Ops, because at DHS, people were showing up earlier and earlier to win the lottery, and they had to stop that before they wound up opening at 3 AM.
 

jt04

Well-Known Member
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Offer a BG choice between RotR and MMRR to attempt to take some of the pressure off of RotR. Eliminate back-ups. If somebody does not get their choice it should default to an "any attraction Fast pass" at WDW.

If successful roll it out to all 4 parks. Reward early arrivals with at least the fast pass mentioned above.

If this goes smoothly, roll out 'day of' paid fast passes to FoP, RotR, MMRR, and Ratatouille through the Disney App to everyone. (Available after BGs have been procesed through the ride). Also, early arrivals who received an any ride fast pass complimentary ticket, could be admitted with paid fastpass holders.

Everyone lives happily ever after. 😊📨
 

SourcererMark79

Well-Known Member
In the Parks
No
Has anyone considered that if it was only SB, would the same people be there early to wait in a 3 or 4 hour line, or 5 hours? Is the VQ bringing people to the park at 6am who normally would not be there (locals and AP, I'm looking at you)
 

TrainChasers

Well-Known Member
as I said, FP and standby boarding should be implemented as soon as the ride is actually ready to go. It should be running exactly like fop is. How late did they keep DAK open that first summer.... was it midnight every night? That seemed fair. You could rope drop and ride it in the morning, you could try to get a fastpass, you could wait 3 hours, or you could go at the end of the night and get in line like I did.

But for now? I think MisterPenguins lottery (can we call it that? I mean it would need an IP associated with it... they could have the Poppins penguins sorting out the lottery names in the app!) is a good idea.

I actually think an in park lottery could work... meaning if you have scanned into the park you can enter and have an equal shot. That way no matter when you enter the park you can try to enter the lottery.
 

UNCgolf

Well-Known Member
Offer a BG choice between RotR and MMRR to attempt to take some of the pressure off of RotR. Eliminate back-ups. If somebody does not get their choice it should default to an "any attraction Fast pass" at WDW.

If successful roll it out to all 4 parks. Reward early arrivals with at least the fast pass mentioned above.

If this goes smoothly, roll out 'day of' paid fast passes to FoP, RotR, MMRR, and Ratatouille through the Disney App to everyone. (Available after BGs have been procesed through the ride). Also, early arrivals who received an any ride fast pass complimentary ticket, could be admitted with paid fastpass holders.

Everyone lives happily ever after. 😊📨
That would be a disaster for Disney operations. There's no way they want thousands of people showing up at each separate park prior to opening every single day just to try to get a BG for whatever ride they want most.
 

mbc342

New Member
My husband is battling lyme disease and has a complicated morning protocol he has to follow. If he doesn't follow it, he'll feel horrible and the rest of his day will be ruined. He cannot physically be anywhere by 7 AM. We schedule all of our fastpasses after 10 or 11 AM. The only time we can rope drop is at Disneyland because we live on the east coast -- so he stays on east coast time and is awake 3 hours early the whole time we're in California. That way he has time to follow his morning protocol. If BGs are always gone in the 7 AM hour, we will never ever get to ride RotR. I wish they had just done Fastpass+ like every other popular ride. Then we'd have the same chance as everyone else to ride. We're coming to Disney next month for 8 days, and I've already resigned myself to the fact that we just won't get on RotR.
 

jt04

Well-Known Member
That would be a disaster for Disney operations. There's no way they want thousands of people showing up at each separate park prior to opening every single day just to try to get a BG for whatever ride they want most.
Pretty sure thousands won't show up that early except the most motivated who should be the priority anyway. I admit this will work best once Tron and Guardians is open. Which is why I suggest implementing it in phases.
 

jt04

Well-Known Member
My husband is battling lyme disease and has a complicated morning protocol he has to follow. If he doesn't follow it, he'll feel horrible and the rest of his day will be ruined. He cannot physically be anywhere by 7 AM. We schedule all of our fastpasses after 10 or 11 AM. The only time we can rope drop is at Disneyland because we live on the east coast -- so he stays on east coast time and is awake 3 hours early the whole time we're in California. That way he has time to follow his morning protocol. If BGs are always gone in the 7 AM hour, we will never ever get to ride RotR. I wish they had just done Fastpass+ like every other popular ride. Then we'd have the same chance as everyone else to ride. We're coming to Disney next month for 8 days, and I've already resigned myself to the fact that we just won't get on RotR.
Paid fast passes after BGs are processed is a catchall for those who can't arrive early. Yes it is an extra fee, but there have to be some accommodations due to limited capacity.

Sadly there are people who would take advantage of an 'exceptions' list and ruin it for others. Guest services might be able to help you.
 

MJJME

Active Member
Offer a BG choice between RotR and MMRR to attempt to take some of the pressure off of RotR. Eliminate back-ups. If somebody does not get their choice it should default to an "any attraction Fast pass" at WDW.

If successful roll it out to all 4 parks. Reward early arrivals with at least the fast pass mentioned above.

If this goes smoothly, roll out 'day of' paid fast passes to FoP, RotR, MMRR, and Ratatouille through the Disney App to everyone. (Available after BGs have been procesed through the ride). Also, early arrivals who received an any ride fast pass complimentary ticket, could be admitted with paid fastpass holders.

Everyone lives happily ever after. 😊📨
1) nobody would choose or want MMRR over ROTR. If they do it means they've ridden ROTR too much already and should be blocked from joining or receive a free lobotomy for choosing a cheap child's ride over the most expensive and largest project Disney has ever done
2) "any attraction fast pass" makes zero sense. FP are used as a perk for whatever Disney deems important to sell (resort rooms) so then would never give up that right as a "consolation" to not get on the most popular ride in America, especially when they dont have to
3) early arrivals cost Disney major money and security risk. They just changed ROTR rules weeks after it opened because it was a huge problem, makes no sense.
4) day of paid fast passes work in DL because there are no hotels to sell. Disney gives a 30 day advantage to resort guests for a reason. The hotels they sell are worth WAY more than a $15 max pass fee (they have over 30,000 hotel rooms and that's growing every year)
 

pfistermd

New Member
Whatever system Disney puts in place, there needs to be a way to guarantee (as much as possible) a way to ride ROTR on the day you are at the park. If you are visiting from out of town and only have one day at HS, I wouldn't want it left up to the luck of a lottery on whether or not I get to ride. I would like to option to get up early for a BG, stay at a disney resort to get a 60d advance FP, or wait in a 4hr line, if that is what it takes.
 

HoustonHorn

Well-Known Member
It seems that until the ride is running close to its THRC and without the constant breakdowns, standby is a truly terrible option. I've read the folks here who say they'll stand in a 6-10 hour line - perhaps the only thing they do in a day - and still possibly not get to ride. Assuming they mean it and aren't just keyboard commandoing, that's great for them. But for the average tourist, who makes up the majority of the guests at WDW, that isn't an option.

It seems that a hybrid FP+/BG system would help visitors who already have to plan based on Disney's rules while giving locals/APs/offisite guests a chance to ride. Open a limited number of FP+ for prebooking per current rules (paid for club level at 90 days; on-site at 60+ days; offsite at 30 days). Yes, these will all book up 65-70 days out, but that isn't different than SDD or FoP.

Then every day, have the BG as it is today. So if you're local or an AP or staying offsite or didn't get a FP, you can participate in the BG process.

Disney can manipulate the BGs as they currently do (changing the size, the start of backups, etc) based on operational realities. And if the ride becomes more stable, they can always drop additional FPs.

As a visitor, I'd love a chance at an FP. But as someone who arrived at 3:50 AM on opening day, I'm also cool with the BG process.

But I really do not understand how anyone can be asking for a standby line that could mean spending a whole day in one line and still not getting to ride.
 

UNCgolf

Well-Known Member
1) nobody would choose or want MMRR over ROTR. If they do it means they've ridden ROTR too much already and should be blocked from joining or receive a free lobotomy for choosing a cheap child's ride over the most expensive and largest project Disney has ever done
MMRR isn't going to be a cheap child's ride (unless Disney really blows it). It sounds really impressive.
 

MJJME

Active Member
It seems that until the ride is running close to its THRC and without the constant breakdowns, standby is a truly terrible option. I've read the folks here who say they'll stand in a 6-10 hour line - perhaps the only thing they do in a day - and still possibly not get to ride. Assuming they mean it and aren't just keyboard commandoing, that's great for them. But for the average tourist, who makes up the majority of the guests at WDW, that isn't an option.

It seems that a hybrid FP+/BG system would help visitors who already have to plan based on Disney's rules while giving locals/APs/offisite guests a chance to ride. Open a limited number of FP+ for prebooking per current rules (paid for club level at 90 days; on-site at 60+ days; offsite at 30 days). Yes, these will all book up 65-70 days out, but that isn't different than SDD or FoP.

Then every day, have the BG as it is today. So if you're local or an AP or staying offsite or didn't get a FP, you can participate in the BG process.

Disney can manipulate the BGs as they currently do (changing the size, the start of backups, etc) based on operational realities. And if the ride becomes more stable, they can always drop additional FPs.

As a visitor, I'd love a chance at an FP. But as someone who arrived at 3:50 AM on opening day, I'm also cool with the BG process.

But I really do not understand how anyone can be asking for a standby line that could mean spending a whole day in one line and still not getting to ride.
I agree 100%. I mentioned on other post that they should adopt some blended version. I like the BG system but it has flaws. There are things they can do to tweak that others have suggested (fp pre booking, limit AP holders to 1 max per week, staggering BG releases etc ). But nobody wants to wait in 4+ hour lines. Hope they tweak to appeal to more people so they don't have to go to FP/standby
 
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jt04

Well-Known Member
1) nobody would choose or want MMRR over ROTR. If they do it means they've ridden ROTR too much already and should be blocked from joining or receive a free lobotomy for choosing a cheap child's ride over the most expensive and largest project Disney has ever done
2) "any attraction fast pass" makes zero sense. FP are used as a perk for whatever Disney deems important to sell (resort rooms) so then would never give up that right as a "consolation" to not get on the most popular ride in America, especially when they dont have to
3) early arrivals cost Disney major money and security risk. They just changed ROTR rules weeks after it opened because it was a huge problem, makes no sense.
4) day of paid fast passes work in DL because there are no hotels to sell. Disney gives a 30 day advantage to resort guests for a reason. The hotels they sell are worth WAY more than a $15 max pass fee (they have over 30,000 hotel rooms and that's growing every year)
Don't care about Disneyland. Both resorts operate uniquely and will require specific rules.

Security is a consideration. They are investing millions in crowd control and they might have to just accept this as part of operating costs.

The new E+ attractions (as I call them) are changing the dynamics. Systems that worked in the past might have to be rethought. The 50th anniversary will bring further challenges.

i came up with my best thoughts and welcome any critique. I always appreciate critics that post a better solution. And look forward to your ideas.

PS- my plan B is a pure lottery the day before. If you win, you are unable to reenter a new lottery for 7 days. (Per attraction) No exceptions.

Only one lottery per guest/party each day.
 

RSoxNo1

Well-Known Member
I threw this out there in another post but I'll repost here.

Because of the unreliability of the attraction, the boarding groups are absolutely necessary. However, I do feel there needs to be an option for guests not willing to get to the park before park opening. I think the backup boarding groups need to be distributed via a lottery. Tokyo Disneyland/DisneySea does this for Big Band Beat.

In short how it works is you enter in all of your group's tickets (already essentially done in MDE) and they tell you immediately if you are given a group. The reason against this is it creates an additional layer of complexity and you're getting a random selection for a non-guaranteed spot.

This is a bad situation for park ops and while there is debate on whether or not the boarding groups are the best option, I have yet to hear anyone present an alternative that is a slam dunk better choice.
 

MJJME

Active Member
Don't care about Disneyland. Both resorts operate uniquely and will require specific rules.

Security is a consideration. They are investing millions in crowd control and they might have to just accept this as part of operating costs.

The new E+ attractions (as I call them) are changing the dynamics. Systems that worked in the past might have to be rethought. The 50th anniversary will bring further challenges.

i came up with my best thoughts and welcome any critique. I always appreciate critics that post a better solution. And look forward to your ideas.

PS- my plan B is a pure lottery the day before. If you win, you are unable to reenter for 7 days. (Per attraction) No exceptions.
I agree wdw has a completely different set of challenges and that's why FP is way more important to wdw vs dl.
 

jt04

Well-Known Member
I agree wdw has a completely different set of challenges and that's why FP is way more important to wdw vs dl.
Just need a system to distribute them fairly and without locking out APs and day guests. Not easy.
 
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