Just added the below information to the lead post. If anyone has data to add to the weight limitations or morning transportation, let me know.
Weight Limitations: Lap belt rather than bar in ride vehicle; similar to Dinosaur - no issues noted
Ride Share: Ride share is the most reliable method for timeliness - drop off at HS (or use BWI as an alternate drop off you don’t mind walking 10 min)
Minnie Vans: Reported running at 6:30am
Parking lot: Reported open as early as 4:30am
Bus: Reported running starting at 6:30am but schedule varies
Boat: Boat schedule has varied - ask a boat operator the night before
Skyliner: Reported running at 7:30am - schedule may vary
Thanks Jeff_AZ for that info, Do you know if cars are waiting on long lines outside the parking lot, waiting to open, like it was happening on the opening day? Because if that is the case, I may just take an Uber.
There were long lines on opening day but I haven’t seen anyone mention that recently. If you arrive at 5:30am the parking lot should be wide open and you will still be among the first in the park, so I don’t see a need to arrive much earlier than that. I would just do whichever option is fits your budget and needs.
Hello All! First time poster!
I’m headed to HS on 1/29 and just got an update from TP that the park opening is changing from 9 am to 8 am. I’m a little bummed because I have a PPO reservation at Hollywood and Vine for 8 am that took some serious effort to get. What is the likely hood of Disney releasing additional reservations earlier than 8 am? And is it worth keeping this reservation now that it provides no PPO benefits?
I would be shocked if they add reservations earlier than 8. I think you are out of luck, sorry.
EDIT: And welcome to the forums!
The good(?) news is that if things continue as they have, they will open the park early (~6:30am) anyway and the PPO would have been useless. Or things will settle down and they won’t open the park earlier than the 8am scheduled opening, which at least will indicate that RotR is operating more reliably and things won’t be as chaotic as they are now.
Thanks Jeff_AZ, we were so happy when you mentioned that arriving at 6:00 should be ok, but now that I think that is a pattern for the park to open at 6:30 am. We should leave the Royal Pacific Hotel around 5:20 am, I think is a 35 minutes drive.
We are trying to avoid waking up at 4:00 am or even right at 5:00 am, if we don’t have to, because we are planning to stay until the fantasmic show, and the kids are going to be dead tired by then.
I’m trying to see how late can we show up to the park, and still be able to get an early boarding group, to make sure that even if the ride has issues, I would be able to ride it before the end of the day.
In the other hand getting a free park hopper and a fast pass, would be even better. lol
The other thing is that I want to enter when the park opens, so I can ride SDD, RoR and TT before those rides get busy. Someone told me that is better to wait until later during the day to line up for SR. So avoid Smugglers Run in the morning.
So getting in the car at 5:30 am will be a bit late for this?
Yeah, I was hoping for the latter. I’ll definitely be following the forums to see how things are operating as we get closer to our travel date. Thanks for all the info! It has been a great help!
If you are fine staying all day, it looks like you could arrive as late as 7am and still get a BG that has a high likelihood of getting called. If you get in the car at 5:30am, you will probably arrive by 6am, be let in the park at opening, and get a morning BG. So you have a little bit of a buffer. People who arrived after 6:50am this morning were already getting afternoon BGs.
Totally agree with this. MFSR is sucking up lots of guests in the morning. Instead, do SDD first, then TSMM, RnRR, ToT, and anything else you can knock out before heading to RotR. Only then should you ride MFSR, unless your BG is for later. Many guests have reported hitting all rides, including RotR, by 10-11am this way.
Thanks a lot Jeff_AZ , I’m ready for this lol
@Jeff_AZ I just got a TP hours update that HS will be opening at 7am Dec 12-14
We will be at WDW next week and the 7:00am opening for HS goes through, at least, the 20th. That being said, plans to get to HS should now be an hour earlier?? My husband is going to murder me but I MUST ride RotR !!
if opening is 7am i would get there 5:30am, but interested in others’ views
Oh lordy, I’m so glad I’m going in January. I couldn’t handle all this uncertainty. Of course, I won’t really have a good idea of what to expect until a few days before my trip anyways. I assume crowds are going to start getting insane next week through the holidays, and hopefully start to die down the first week of January. But who knows…
5:30am seems reasonable. A 7am opening is hard to predict. I mean, I don’t think everyone automatically shows up one hour earlier than they were going to. I think it’s more of a sliding scale. Some people just can’t get out of bed that early or get their kids out the door that fast.
So you still might be ok arriving at 6:30. But 6 or 5:30am would be better. Probably not necessary to get there before 5 still.
Keep watching this thread though! We’ll see what happens when the 7am openings start.
I would not keep an 8 am HV res if park opening was 8 am. We did a 10:15 am breakfast at HV so we could RD the park and then eat when the crowds started to build up. The said, my family thought the food (breakfast) at HV was not good. None of us ate very much including DS2 who is generally not too picky.
Wow I just saw it too, 7:00 am it is. I guess now we need to be at the car by 5:20 not questions ask
One thing to point out as they change park hours is that they often open up more FPP for the new hours. Liners on chat have been reporting snagging new FPP for SDD in January, for example.
Thank you! I was able to pick one up!