Coaster nerd wants to know best seats on coasters

I am more of a coaster nerd than a Disney nerd and, to me, it makes a huge difference on most roller coasters whether I sit in the front or back.

Does anyone have opinions on the best seats on RnRC, EE, SDD, SDMT, SM, or BTMRR? I think I really like back seat on EE and front on RnRC last time. I liked front on Space at DLR and HKDL but don’t remember it from WDW . I also don’t remember having a strong opinion about BTMRR.

I find that for most slower coasters, the back is the best, which is definitely the case for BTMRR. In the front, you drop really slow down the hills. For 7dmt though, I like the middle so you can see the animatronics better when you are sitting and waiting at the end. For SM, the front is best, as it’s less jerky.


I generally prefer front seats in most traditional coasters as I like to see the track race past. For SM and RnRC, it’s so dark the visual element isn’t that important, and I find both to be smoother in the front. On BTMRR I prefer closer to the back. The engine essentially blocks any forward view from the front, and it’s definitely a “wilder” ride in the back. Just about any seat on EE is good; you can see the visuals better from the front, but the ride is wilder in the back. Again, because of the engine, I prefer mid to back on 7DMT. Haven’t been on SDD, but as the front view is mostly blocked by SD’s head, I would think mid to back would be better.

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Both BTMRR and 7DMT seem really slow if you are in the front. The back makes for a much more thrilling ride.

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I tend to prefer the back seat on most coasters, though mid-to front is often better on loopers.

I have mostly no preference on the WDW coasters, in general; aside from RnRC, none seem to have a high enough speed to excite me much. Though I have not yet been on SDD.

Front is definitely best on Space at DLP.

Frankly, I haven’t found a huge difference on WDW coasters. But my general principles are as follows:

  1. For older coasters, or wooden coasters, which tend to be rough, it is better to be toward the front.
  2. Front seat is great for more extreme/tall coasters because the view is unobstructed. But I don’t think this really applies to any coasters at Disney…and even something like BTMRR doesn’t have an unobstructed view anyhow, due to the engine.
  3. Back seat is better on smaller coasters (aside from rule 1 above) because you get pulled over the top of the hill, rather than creep over the top. Although, some might say there is something to be argued for the “suspend time” factor…but I think that applies more to taller coasters.

This is a source of some discussion in our house, but generally say that the front is best for RnR, And space mountain. The back is definitely best for thunder mountain. We are split on Everest - I prefer the front. My daughters the back. We have no strong preference on seven dwarves.

For something like RnR, front is great because it launches straight from the station instead of the slow climb up a lift hill followed by the “dangling” over the top of the hill waiting for it to start falling.

I don’t like the front at Space Mountain, because seeing what’s coming makes it less exciting for me.

We queued for ages for the front on RnRC and thought it was really tame. The next time we got back row and it was miles better. I like to be near the front on EE for pics at the torn up track, but I honestly don’t think there’s much difference wherever you sit.

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I agree on the back for most, especially BTMRR.

But we always wait for the front on EE. You can see past the track at the top out over the world, you are getting the combination of backwards and curving at top speed, and you get that view coming out of the mountain on the drop.

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I have strong opinions about this. For me, the best part of a roller coaster is the “free fall” or “hang time.” It’s why Tower of Terror is my favorite ride. So my placement on the train ideally maximizes the hang time - usually in the back third of the train. The second most important factor is the wind in your face (to increase the sensation of speed) - for which being in front helps. Third most important factor is the view, which also gives the edge to the front.

  • BTMRR: Front of the train crests the hills at too low a speed, so on many hills you are still accelerating even when you come out of the hill. Very back is best.
  • EE: Very front for the view and wind, or back third for hang time.
  • RnRC: Very front hands down - ride is mostly focused on speed rather than hang time. Also there is a little bit to look at and the front has the best view.
  • SM: Very front - cars are too short to make a big difference in hang time so wind is most important.
  • Incredicoaster (DLR): Back third of the train or very front.
  • 7DMT: Back third (but only ridden a few times so may need to revisit).
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My conclusions after having ridden:
RnRC - front row for sure. The wind and effects are much more pronounced in the front. Ride is also marginally smoother. No real benefit in the back.
EE - back row, but could go either way. Slightly more airtime on the big drop, slightly worse view.
Space - Front. Wind really amplifies the feeling of speed. Not much benefit to back.
7DMT - Front for the visuals. No other reason to be anywhere.
BTMRR - Back is a little whippier through the trick track (WDW), but really doesn’t matter.
SDD - Really doesn’t matter. The front is blocked by Slinky and there aren’t any big drops for the back to accentuate.


For the most part I’m a front seat guy, because I love the unobstructed view of the track; I also generally prefer the positive Gs at the bottom of the big hills to the negative Gs going over the tops. This holds true for almost all the Disney coasters, except for BTMRR and 7DMT, where the engine seriously blocks the view.