How long do you think Disney will use boarding groups for ROTR

Just wondering if anyone has any educated guesses on how long the boarding group system will be used for ROTR? And also if you think park hours will be extended beyond February 1st. I assume it’s mostly wait and see, but I’m new to this and thought maybe others would have guesses based on previous new rides etc.

We’re just going the first week of February so am interested as to how it may work out thanks!

I’d say the consensus among us “experts” (lol) is that they will continue to use BGs for the foreseeable future - meaning no less than 2-3 months and more likely a year. Based on what continues to happen with FoP I wouldn’t be surprised if the kind of fanaticism you see in the mornings at HS right now continues for 2-3 years. Hopefully 1) the timing will shift back an hour or so eventually; and 2) the ride will become more reliable so they will be able to issue and get through more BGs. But I wouldn’t expect any of that by February.


As you’ve stated, it’s going to be a “wait & see” situation. The next three weeks will give no accurate info for what “normal” operations will be like since it’s the busiest time of the year.

As far as Boarding Groups go, WDW is stating publicly that they’ve been highly successful at both DLR & WDW. I don’t see them going away anytime soon. IMHO - It’ll be months, probably mid to late Spring, at the earliest before FPP is put into place and BGs leave.

Operating Hours in February - IMHO: It’ll be after the MLK weekend - 1/21/19 - before WDW / DHS announces any more changes to their hours.That’s the last holiday weekend after the Christmas / New Years rush. They typically post the updated hours about 10 - 14 days in advance.

I think they’ll continue to open as soon as possible each morning even with announced extended / early opening park hours.

It looks like EEMH were needed. They just did them too soon. I’ll wager WDW / DLR never “soft open” another new Land again. It was a way for WDW to try to sell the same park / Land to the same customer at least twice and it flopped. Seems like people really were waiting for the entire new Land to be available before going.


Or the premier ride. I suspect that if RofR opened August 29 and MFSR opening December 5, the results may have been different even though the entire land wasn’t opened at the same time.


idk… IMHO even as awesome as RotR is there would still be a majority of people who would wait for both to be open. The majority of people only go to WDW every 2 - 5 years and would want to make sure they do both in the same trip. Everyone would have been, “Wow! I hear RotR is amazing! I bet MFSR is going to be as good!!”

It’s all just conjecture / hindsight / guessing though


Thank you everyone, that’s really helpful,

My family are early risers, so my ideal situation would be that they are still doing boarding groups, but that the demand has eased off a teeny bit that We could go early - but not EARLY lol

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Did they have crowds lining up that early for anything on the west coast? I don’t seem to recall people getting there 2 hrs. before super early park opening.

There was madness on opening day - people showed up super early and were camped out in line. But after that first day it basically returned to normal. I expect madness again for RotR though.

ETA: during the one month preview period people were showing up two hours before park open if they had the first set of boarding passes. But I had one and found that unnecessary - I showed up about 30 min beforehand and got through just fine. Didn’t make it to the Cantina or lightsaber but didn’t want to do that the first time anyway.

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i’m going to be keeping an eye on this too! we are heading there Feb 9th. I hate not knowing!

When it opened in DL you had to have a reservation to get into Galaxy’s Edge, and you had a limited time there. Those that lined up early presumably had early reservation slots and wanted to be at the front of the line for maximum time.

There was no reason for others to line up early as there was no stand-by entry.

Update from this morning - 12/18/19

Even if the park opens early, BGs will not be distributed / available until the official park opening time. Also, other rides & attractions are not guaranteed to be operating until the official park opening time either.

Guests were allowed into the park at 6:30am today. Boarding Groups started right at 7am. All BGs ran out before 7:30am. The new “back-up” BGs were gone by 8am.

Looks like WDW / DHS is trying to curb people from arriving 2+ hours early. However, if BGs are gone in the first 30 mins this doesn’t seem to be working.


Jeff, you are the resident AZ DLR expert…if not I appoint you :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:
What method (BG or Fps) is DL using for SM and the future ROTR?
This Bay Area resident (former 45 yr SoCAL resident) hasn’t been keeping up with the latest.

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None of these, just standby. It works just fine there. I assume you are talking about Smugglers Run (SR), not Space or Splash (SM)?

No announcement yet. They had boarding groups in place for the first public day in late June (after the first month where they restricted to onsite guests), but they removed them as they were never needed after day 1. They could bring them back if needed. I think they are watching WDW to figure out what to do.


Agree with @Wahoohokie’s response. I suspect they will use BGs for RotR because it’s worked so well at WDW (well, mostly). I wouldn’t be surprised if they tweak their procedure for the west coast culture (maybe similar to what they did today). But you can bet I’ll be all over it on January 17th! Maybe at the expense of my WDW coverage - sorry Florida. Lol


Yes SR not SM? Lol


I was thinking about this some more - BGs are very similar to MaxPass. The primary difference is you pay for MaxPass (though they still have paper FP for people who don’t want to pay), so people who pay have an advantage. In contrast to WDW, you can’t apply for a return time on MaxPass before the day of your visit (which is why WDW needs a distinct system from FPP). So I wonder if they will just open MaxPass / Fastpass for RotR rather than using BGs?

The contrapoint to that is that they might want to give the impression that RotR is still a “separate” experience that is too good for MaxPass, so to speak. The BG system has already been tested at DL, it wouldn’t provide an advantage to those who paid for MaxPass, and it would pop up on your home screen instead of having to dig through the app for MaxPass. So that’s why I bet they will use BGs.

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It wasn’t crazy over the summer, but there were lots of factors there, including blackouts for a lot of Passholders and non-locals staying away because they feared the crowds. More importantly, Rise of the Resistance, still hasn’t opened out west yet. Disneyland has a history of ridiculous waits for highly-anticipated new attractions, including Star Tours, Indiana Jones, etc. having people waiting hours every day for quite a while after opening.

WDW; my guess is that Disney is motivated to move RotR to the FP+ system sooner rather than later. I can’t imagine Disney has the appetite for ongoing complaints from their guests who are not allowed to ride because they didn’t scan into the park earlier than 7:30ish. It’s one thing to have a 2 to 5 hour wait; the guest can choose whether or not to get into that line. But to refuse Disney’s own resort guests any opportunity to ride if they arrived later than the early morning edition of BG Quest, that’s another matter altogether.
Disclaimer: I am PRO BG, and I hope it’s still in place in April when I go, because our family will arrive early, and we’ve thoroughly enjoyed every episode of Big Guess Quest thus far! Disney’s secretive script keeps us guessing each morning, and @Jeff_AZ has been such an amazing host of the show!

Having said all that, my guess is that FP’s won’t come until the ride gains greater stability and capacity… as of right now, the BG’s afford Disney the ability to control crowds on a day to day basis. At “some point”, they’ll get most of the bugs worked out, and the capacity will increase to an acceptable level, and then… in the still of the night…FP’s will open up for RotR (and with no communication from Disney > This Is The Way). Then the real fun begins…
Forum boards will explode.
The FP+ system will crash.
Cats & Dogs will begin living together.
The chaos will be beautiful man, sniff , just beautiful.
Timing? My money is that FP’s will be available for RotR in early March. You know, to really pile on top of that stress that’s going on during the opening of Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway. Plus, MMRR won’t “quite” be ready for prime time at it’s own opening, so it will need to take over the BG system from RotR :astonished:


I nearly just spit coffee all over my keyboard. :rofl::rofl::rofl:

This is the way.


I’ll work harder.