Galaxy Edge - Planning for Capacity

So now that it’s been announced, I can start planning my already booked trip for 6/29-7/1. Been to WDW several time but this is our first time at DL. We are fully prepared to skip GE but I do have 2 questions about planning:

  1. How does the park work if/when it hits capacity? Our first day we will not arrive until noon so I’m sort of planning on going to DCA. We will have an early night after dinner to be well rested for the next 2 days. We will rope drop day 2 and 3 (park order not decided yet) but I plan on taking an afternoon break at the hotel (Best Western Plus across the street) so we can stay out late. Will we run into issues getting back into the park late afternoon? Or once we scan in the morning, are we safe to leave and come back? What is a good time to leave/come back into the parks?

  2. I’m reading that I don’t really need a TP and to just follow the MP but I’m used to WDW and my plans have never failed me there. I can go off script when needed but I’ll feel better walking into the park with a plan. One of my days(Sunday) shows the CL at DL is a 5…I can’t believe this at this point. Should I just plan all my days for CL 10?

I am used to WDW so if anyone can give me general planning tips/differences between the two I would appreciate it!

I have only been there once for capacity, but didn’t leave the park. if you leave and are not an onsite guest, it may be an issue getting back, but likely only temporarily.
I have not been since MP was started. I will be there this July as well (19th to 23rd, staying at DLH). My plan is to still make a touring plan, and veer off of it as I acquire fastpasses. Use it more like a structure/outline. I figure I’ll at least know approx where to be when.
We were at WDW last year, and using FPP has me very excited for MP. Start early and you can do anything you want each day. good luck!

I’m glad you’ll have enough time get some things in order to make plans around the opening of GE! I think it’s a wise move to be prepared to skip GE and I think the best advice that can be given in this situation is to be as flexible as you can with your plans. This summer Disneyland and GE have so many question marks (when will Rise of the Resistance be up? will Disneyland expand the reservation system past June 23? How will one even start to obtain a reservation? Will there be a physical location where guests will be allowed to line up to access the land after reservations are no longer needed? and so on). Until a lot of these questions can be answered, there’s just a lot of guesswork going on, but here’s my 2 cents on the questions you’ve asked:

  1. Today when Disneyland is nearing capacity they’ll first stop selling 1-day tickets at the ticket booths, then as you leave security & line up to enter the park, they will have temporary queuing areas (usually just taped down marking the queue since right now capacity is rarely hit). There may be several different queue areas and CMs will ask you questions like “Have you already been in the park today? What time? What time did you leave?” and based on your response they’ll direct you to the appropriate queue where you’ll eventually be let in, capacity allowing. The only time we have had to do this was for the 24 hour day to kick-off the Disneyland 60th celebration (in case you are interested, we had been in DCA from park open to just before 1pm and then went into Disneyland for just 30 or so minutes at 1pm. Then took a VERY brief midday break at the hotel & were back at Disneyland around 3pm. We JUST barely made it back in the park before they closed to capacity as many report not being able to get in that afternoon until 3am but that day was a little unusual as it was the debut of the Paint the Night Parade and fireworks & so many of the crowds were camped out in Main St creating a huge cluster right at the entry probably creating a big old fire hazard, so even though other areas of the park may have had capacity bc Main St was so chalk full they kept entry closed for SO long. Usually when they close to capacity it’s only for a few hours) . I imagine if they don’t expect you to enter the park within the very near future based on your responses, they’ll let you know that capacity doesn’t allow you to enter and allow you the option to wait it out or head to DCA. I would always just head to DCA in that event & come back to check on Disneyland as it gets a little later in the evening & some crowds leave for the evening/dinner. The hours that seem to be generally the peak crowds are 1-3pm so if you can take your break a little early to avoid those but be back early enough to potentially get back in in the event of nearing capacity, that would be my strategy.

  2. Always create a TP. Even though they aren’t as accurate on the DL side, I like having the knowledge of what I want to accomplish better established by doing one that just winging it. Just know that wait times after the first hour or so tend to be off, and often lower than what they actually are BUT the plans also underestimate (by a lot) the amount of FastPasses you can get, especially if you have MaxPass (or a really, super efficient energetic runner). As for the CL of 5 that you are seeing is a Sunday with all but the 2 highest levels of APs blocked & 4th of July is closer to the following weekend so & we have been & had friends go that last week of June say that it is a fantastic time to go & tends to be a nicer, quieter time in the summer season (again, this is pre-GE so for it to be nice & quiet again will depend a lot on how Disney corrals the GE crowd). TP released crowd level updates & posted the following blog that gives some good insights on what they expect, what they’re waiting on to hear more about as well as a few suggestions on how to strategize your day. So definitely worth a read for your trip!