PlanningThe ParksTips

Changes to Be Aware Of Before Your Disney Trip

Have a Walt Disney World vacation coming up in 2022 or thinking about getting a trip planned for summer or fall of this year?  We have some big changes that have happened in Walt Disney World that you will want to be aware of before you head down.

EPCOT Garden
Credit: Disney

Park Pass Reservations

Walt Disney World now requires Guests to make Park Pass Reservations for each of the four main Theme Parks (Magic Kingdom, EPCOT, Disney’s Hollywood Studios and Disney’s Animal Kingdom).

If you haven’t been to Walt Disney World since 2020, you might not have made these before.  Once Guests purchase a Walt Disney World Theme Park Ticket, they can log into their My Disney Experience app and choose which of the four Disney Parks they are going to visit each day.

Although this might seem frustrating at first, remember in the past we were already doing this by choosing our dining and fastpasses 180 and 60 days ahead of time.  Now instead of choosing rides, you are choosing an overall park.

We highly recommend getting these park passes made as soon as you have your tickets bouts as they do fill up.

Credit: Disney

Disney Genie, Genie+ and Individual Attraction Selections

In October 2021, Disney introduced a new feature to the My Disney Experience app with Disney Genie.  This is a free planning tool that helps Guests navigate the Disney Parks during their vacations (see more here).

As part of this new feature, Guests can also choose to purchase Genie+ at $15/day/person giving them access to over 40 Lightning Lanes therefore bypassing the regular lines and saving time in line.

If you haven’t used Genie+ yet, take some time to learn more about it.  We have a lot of articles about this feature as well as the top rides we would use it on in each Park HERE, frustrations you might have with it HERE and what dates in 2022 we think it would be beneficial to purchase it HERE.

Another feature that was added was Individual Attraction Selections.  In each of the four Disney Parks there are currently two rides that are not included with Genie+ but can be purchased al-a-carte.

The pricing for these rides are date based and range from $7/person to $15/person.

Be aware of all these new offerings and take some time to read those pieces above so you can determine if these features are ones that would benefit your family or not.

Early Entry and Extending Evening Hours

Walt Disney World previously offered extra magic hours to Walt Disney World Resort Guests both in the mornings and evenings at one specific Theme Park.  This has recently changed and we appreciate the options.

Guests staying at a Walt Disney World Resort hotel or a Good Neighbor Hotel can take advantage of early entry at all four Theme Parks each day.  All four Disney Parks open a half hour early to Resort Guests giving them a jump on the day.

If you are staying on property, we highly recommend looking into this option as it is a fantastic way to get ahead of the crowd and save some time in line later in the day.

Disney also is offering extended evening hours to Guests staying at Deluxe and Deluxe Villa Resorts.  These are offered on specific days at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, EPCOT and Magic Kingdom.

Guests are given two extra hours in the specific park after Park closes.  This again is a fantastic time to experience the Parks with low crowds.

Be aware of these options and figure out how they fit into your plans.

WaltDisneyWorld Bus
credit: Disney Tips

No Magical Express

A big change for many Walt Disney World Guests is the ending of Disney’s Magical Express.  This was a free transportation service from Orlando International Airport to Walt Disney World Resort hotels.

If you are heading down in 2022, you will need to figure out your transportation options from the airport to your hotel.

Although there are a variety of options, each of them will cost you money so make sure to budget that into your plans.

From Mears Connect and Sunshine Flyer to private transportation and ride share, there are a variety of choices, but make sure you plan ahead so you are at the airport trying to figure out what to do next.

Remy's Ratatouille Adventure
Credit: Disney

Everything New

If you haven’t been to Walt Disney World in a while, there are a lot of new and exciting experiences to explore.  From new rides and attractions to fun dining options and character interactions, Disney has so much magic to offer.

Before you head down, take time to see what new experiences you might want to take advantage of while on vacation.

Space 220 in EPCOT and Steakhouse 71 in Disney’s Contemporary Resort and new dining options that are all the rave right now.  With amazing atmospheres and excellent food, Guests are extremely pleased with these new options

Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure and this summer Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind are two new rides that will be in EPCOT bringing both a family-friendly option and a little more thrill to this Disney Park.

Credit: Disney

Make sure to take some time to enjoy the cavalcades in Magic Kingdom or the new stage show.  Disney Enchantment and Harmonious are two amazing nighttime spectaculars that also shouldn’t be missed.

We love that there is so much constantly opening and coming back to Walt Disney World making our trips exciting and magical each and every time.

If you are preparing for a trip to Walt Disney World or thinking about a trip later this year, we hope that this helps you be aware of some of the big changes and how they might impact your planning and your trip.

Use these tips and our others to have a magical time in Walt Disney World.

Jennifer Retzlaff

Jennifer became a lifelong Disney fan during her first trip to Walt Disney World in 6th grade. From that moment, Disney became a big part of her life. She quickly started to introduce her love of Disney to her family with a Disney honeymoon and then family trips when her youngest was 18 months old. She loves the magic that Disney brings to people through theme parks, cruises, and adventures. As a teacher, she tries to bring Disney magic into her classroom to help kids believe that “If You Can Dream It, You Can Do It.” She is also part of the Magic Vacation Planner team as a personal travel advisor. With this team, she can now help others plan magical vacations. She loves bringing her love to Disney to readers with How to Disney.

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