Off-Site Reservation Entry

I have a trip to Disney World planned for the beginning on February, but only for 2 days. We are staying at an off-site hotel. I have been many times before, but it is my friend’s first time going and I’m trying to give him a “Best-of” tour for the 2 full days that we are there. We are doing Hollywood Studios the first day, with a focus on the bigger attractions and Star Wars, especially. He wants to build a lightsaber as well. I have not “super-planned” a trip, since my last solo trip in January 2020, when I attempted a 1 Day Speedrun of all 4 parks (The Parkeology/Every Ride Challenge, for those “in-the-know”.) As this is my first trip without Fastpass+, I am a bit lost on how to save as much time/achieve all of the attractions that we want to see, in 2 days. I have no clue on Genie/Genie+/Lightning Lane (though I am keeping the options open.) However, upon thinking about it, I realized that, when making his Lightsaber reservation, that it gives reservation time options that are prior to the park opening. (Example: First Day, Hollywood Studios opens at 8:30am to On-Site, 9am to Off-Site guests. I snagged an 8:25am Lightsaber reservation time.) My question’s for this, because it’s been a while since I’ve done this.

1.If we arrive early, I am assuming that they will let us into the park, as we have a reservation. If we finish with the reservation early (meaning before 9am, as we are off-site guests) are we able to go onto attractions before 9am (between 8:30a and 9a), since the park is open to On-Site Guests?

  1. If the answer to above is yes (which I believe it is, based on previous experience), are we able to instead get in line immediately for Rise of the Resistance PRIOR to the arriving at the reservation, but AFTER 8:30a? Say 8:31a. Our reservation time is 8:25a, but to my understanding, reservations have wiggle room, just like Fastpasses used to (5min before or 15min after your time), because even when you have a reservation in an optimized Touring Plan, it sometimes has you showing up 30 minutes AFTER the reservation time.

  2. If we do “miss” our reservation time to go to Rise, how late are we able to show up, to make the lightsaber, and they won’t have a problem with it?

  3. Since our reservation time is 8:25a and the park is scheduled to open at 8:30a, what is the earliest that the turnstiles will allow us inside, to go to our reservation?

  4. Will they let us start building the saber PRIOR to 8:25a, if we arrive at the shop earlier than that, depending on how early the turnstiles will let us in? In essence, is there a way that we could arrive at the shop at 8:15a, do a speed lightsaber build session to be finished with it right before 8:30a, so we can THEN immediately run to Rise?

If all else fails, I am also fine with actually going to our 8:25a reservation, finishing the lightsaber as we’re supposed to, and then going to Rise, since I’m sure that arriving at 8:45a will still be better than arriving at 9am, with the rest of the Off-Site. Or, if my assumption to #1 is wrong and they won’t let us on any rides prior to 9am, then still being the first of the Off-Site’s on, since we are already in that section of the park.

I don’t have answers…but keep in mind that the building of a lightsaber is an experience, not just something you do. That is, there is a show element to it. I don’t think you can “speed build” a lightsaber. It takes as long as it takes, and at specific “showtimes”, per se. It isn’t the same as the building a droid experience, which is basically start and finish at your own pace.


Dang it, I didn’t think of that. I have only done the Droid experience before, so that does make sense.

Plus the time of your reservation is for you to enter. There might be a few people in front of you. I think DH and DS took around 30 minutes in all, just building one.

I have noticed when there are pre park open reservations available that is a sign that park hours may modify to open earlier. I did that with a breakfast ADR once at HS, booking a time that was 30-45 mins before posted park open hours, and sure enough by the time we left for our trip the park hours changed to open an hour earlier.

Interesting! That is cool to know, since I’ve already got all of our park hours written down. I’ll put it on my calendar to check into it closer to/day of.

What is your plan for taking the lightsaber with you for the rest of the day, and handling rides where you can’t take it with you? That is one downside of an earlier reservation, you have to lug it around. If you are aiming to show your friend the best of, and want to get a jump on Rise, maybe an earlier Ogas reservation (as that seems to open when the park opens) and can be a quick visit if you don’t want to stay long. There is also helpful information on the unpublished true grace period time for LL and I believe ILL (it’s really 119 minutes after the window, not just 10) in other threads.

I was planning on carrying it with me/him on all rides. From my understanding, you can bring bags/carry-on’s onto all rides at Disney. Some are much more difficult, obviously, such as the roller coasters, where I can’t just tuck it between my legs, but it comes in a carrying case, with a strap, so I would do what I’ve always done, which is put my leg through the strap, make sure it is fully closed (or upside down, so it can’t just fall out), and most likely keep a hand on it for the entire ride. I’ve been on every single ride (except for MMRR, Guardians, Tron, and Remy’s, as those have all opened since the last time I was there, and the only other ride that we will be riding that day where the lightsaber will be an issue is most likely Tron, and to my understanding, they have boxes to keep your stuff in, for the ride, similar to FoP), so I know that I can essentially just hold it for the ride, as I’ve done before for things like Everest and Rock n Roller Coaster.

And we are actually not using Lightning Lane for Rise, as he is VERY frugal (I only got him to agree to LL for Tron), so we will have to do standby for that, and I really just want to avoid the 80-100 minute wait that Touring Plans is giving me for it later in the day, by getting to it immediately the second we’re in the park, if possible.

I will check into Oga’s, to see if that’s an option for us, that day. We do still have an 11:20a reservation for the Lightsaber, in case the plan for the 8:25a didn’t work out for us

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If you have the trip set up on your Touring Plans dashboard, you’ll get email updates whenever park hours change.

I doubt the light sabre will fit in those lockers. It wouldn’t fit in a large suitcase, even diagonally.

Yeah, but I guarantee that we won’t be the only people that day or probably even that hour, with a lighsaber when we come through so I will ask for Cast Member assistance closer to, so we’ll figure it out, I’m not too worried about it.

The Tron lockers are tiny. A light saber won’t fit. I can barely get a small sling bag in there.

Yep, if it doesn’t fit, then it doesn’t fit. I will ask the Cast Member’s what the best course of action for having the lightsaber in a safe spot would be. If my friend and I need to split up, where one of us goes on Tron and the other goes on another ride with the lightsaber, we can do that as well, since we will have Individual Lightning Lane for that, we can plan on that as well. We don’t have a car and we are staying extremely far off site (literally right outside of Universal), so we don’t have a way around it. We’re also on an EXTREME time crunch on our two Disney days, so don’t want to go out of the way for no reason.

Any way you could move your Savi workshop appointment to the END of the day, so you aren’t dealing with the Lightsaber in the other parks?

This has the added benefit of getting you in SWGE after dark when you can actually enjoy the lightsaber in full glory.

It would probably mean re-thinking the rest of your day, though.

Nope, won’t work for any other time, we’re doing Hollywood Studios for the first half of the first day, with Magic Kingdom for the second half, and we have to be in MK for the end of the day for Happily Ever After, because that was my one MUST for MK, so there’s no way around bringing it with us to MK. And we’re only in MK for the first hour of the next day, and I don’t want to chance not getting an early enough Tron time for the second day, because of how squished our days are.

Hmm. Another thought, then. Instead of going from HS to MK directly, take a HS bus to, say, The Contemporary. Then drop your lightsaber off at Bell Services and tip them well! They can hold onto it until you are done at MK. You can then walk back to Contemporary to pick it up.

Someone else might chime in on how do-able this plan actually is.

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That’s a good idea.

That is actually a very good point, especially since The Contemporary is on the Monorail stop. We might be able to fit a stop in to there, since we have to travel to the TTC to get an uber ride back to our hotel anyways. I have also literally walked to The Contemporary from MK before as well.