Waits in Pandora really 120 min @ 8am?

I’m planning our visit to AK on 1/5/19, using EMH. Haven’t gotten FPP yet, so I tried evaluating a Touring Plan with rides on FOP and NRJ at 8am. Touring Plans came back with a 120 minute wait for FOP at 8 am. How is that possible? Somebody has to be there first, right? How?

Someone will be there first yes, the person who has been waiting since 6.30am. The plan assumes you will arrive at the tapstyles at 8am and if you do that, you will very probably have a 2 hour wait.

I posted this on another thread earlier today but FWIW…

We RD FOP on Friday 10/26. Got to bus at WL at 735, bus arrived at 745 and then…they took us to pick up more passengers at Contemporary (only time that has ever happened to me). Arrived at AK, through bag check and tapstyles and heading to FOP at 830 (30 min later than we’d hoped). They had already let people past the bridge when we got there. Arrived at the queue at 836. We walked continuously through a snaking queue outside the attraction and then passed under the stand-by line indicator, which said 90 minute wait at 845. The line moved quickly. We really didn’t stop moving. Not sure exactly what time we got out but there was a 210 minute wait posted upon our exit. Based on photo evidence, we were already in line for Dinosaur by 930 and made it to EE before our FPP window ended at 1005.

ETA CL was a 5

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Oh my- I’d have a heart attack if they did that to me on my AK day- we only get one shot at it this next trip.:open_mouth: I’m actually planning for Uber since we’ll be at the BWI with its less-than-reliable bus service.
But it sounds like the line went quite a bit faster than you thought it would- thank goodness for small favors!

One thing we learned the hard way is that the park opening time is not really the park opening time. They let folks through security and the tapstyles about 1/2 hour early, then you wait with hundreds of your new best friends at a point INSIDE the park, typically behind a rope. At the posted opening time the CMs will allow you through to the rides. This is called “rope drop”.

The only way to be first is to be at the head of the pack, right at the rope.

If you show up to the park at 8, you’re already “late”. This is a hard thing for my family to understand but they are starting to come around…:grinning:

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We are planning 7:30 arrival for 9 AM opening in Jan. Precisely for this reason. We are off property so no hope for a FPP unless we catch a same day drop.

One TP tip that I am using for our scenario. I’m setting out TP to start at 9:30 and leaving FOP off it. Then in the notes I have the details about our RD plan. I’m doing something similar to accommodate our PPO BOG and 7DMT at MK. Can’t remember which liner gave me that tip, but THANKS!

When Pandora opened, they quickly realised they would need to have people waiting much closer to the Pandora entrance to avoid a massive stampede. So they started leading people in smallish groups much earlier than the posted opening time right to the line for FoP. And that has continued ever since.

They repeated that when TSL opened, allowing guests heading to TSL to get much closer than the usual point before posted opening.

Of course you still end up waiting as long, but the wait is mostly while the park is still closed, rather than wasting potential touring time queueing.