Pop Century to EPCOT - recommendations to rope drop?

What would be the best transportation to get to EPCOT early for an 11am opening? From Pop Century, is it worth it to take the Skyliner all the way? I’ve also read someone’s suggestion of taking the Skyliner to HS and then walking to EPCOT? Are the waits for the Skyliner so long that it would be better to Uber to a nearby resort hotel and then walk? I’m assuming since they have the Skyliner that they don’t offer buses from Pop to EPCOT.

What do you think is the best way to rope drop EPCOT?

Skyliner is MHO. It opens later so you shouldn’t have a long wait to get on it

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I shared my Skyliner experience from last week here - Our MO/Resort Experience - Live Report 1/22-2/17. The CBR station does get pretty backed up at times, and I believe they start running the Epcot line an hour before. If you’re able to be there early, the Skyliner might be fine. If you’re running late or it’s important to you to beat other people into the park, I personally would Uber.

If I was doing it, I would probably Skyliner to CBR sometime after 9:30 (when they people trying to get to HS have gotten through and the line is mostly gone) and then walk to Riviera and get in their Epcot line. I don’t love how the CBR line is HS and Epcot people together.

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I’ve enjoyed reading about your visits! I remember reading about your experience with the Skyliner but hadn’t thought about it in relation to rope dropping EPCOT. Thanks!

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Glad I could help!

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Before last August, I was nervous to ride Skyliner due to my fear of heights…but we were booked at Pop Century. But once we were there, actually Skyliner ended up being a non-issue, despite my fear of heights. However, I quickly learned that week that Skyliner isn’t all that it’s cracked up to be…and, in fact, I think, in hindsight, it probably wasn’t a wise investment for Disney. That is due to how unreliable it was. On three of the mornings we were there, we had a voicemail on our phone informing us that the Skyliner would not be running and we would need to use buses. (In our case, these incidences happened to fall on days we weren’t going to HS nor Epcot, but if we had, it would have been frustrating.)

Then, one day in Epcot we had planned to take Skyliner back to Pop, but it was shut down due to wind. So, we walked to the front of the park where they were to have buses, but buses never came. After waiting a while, we looked…and Skyliner was back running! So we had to walk all the back to the IG again!

Another time, we BARELY made it back to our hotel on Skyliner when it was shut down for lightning in the area. If we had been just 3 minutes slower, we would have been “stuck” at the CBR station .

Finally, as all this relates to this point, when we attempt to RD HS from Pop, we got to the station early enough…but it ended up taking us 53 minutes! The major delay was at the CBR station, where you have a mixing bowl of folks from Pop, CBR, and Riviera all coming together to try to get on the HS leg of the trip. The Epcot leg was not open, but people were already queuing for it, so I imagine it would have a similar problem (although likely not as bad) as trying to RD HS.

All this to say…if I were to stay on property going forward, I do NOT see Skyliner as an advantage. The fact is, as unglamorous as they are, the buses are far more consistent and reliable, which to me makes non-Skyliner values and moderates the better choice.

Having said all that…the ride on the Skyliner was lovely when it was operating.

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Thanks for your thoughts, @ryan1! Last night we finally made the decision to Uber to Swan and then walk to Epcot. There just seem to be too many potential points where the Skyliner could delay us and since we’re only going to Epcot one day, we want to make sure we are there early for rope drop. We do think Skyliner will be fun to ride but see it as another ride and not so much as reliable transportation as you’ve pointed out.

Do you think that early morning crush of folks at CBR heading to HS is/was caused by people trying to get there for RotR boarding groups? One of the reasons we chose Pop was proximity to the Skyliner and the ability to get to HS and Epcot relatively hassle-free.

I was just at HS on 2/5 and we had about a 15 minute wait at the CBR station (stretched back to the Joeffry’s stand). We got in line a little after 8:30am for a 9am opening, and was in HS at exactly 9:01. For EP on 2/7 we had about a 20 minute wait at the Riviera station and got into EP just past 11am. One thing we noticed specifically about the CBR to EP line is that they left about every 3rd cab open to be filled by groups at the Riviera since they’re only boarding one party per cab; so it probably doesn’t save much time if you walk to Riviera to board the EP line there. They started running the Skyliner an hour before the official park opening times.