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Disney’s Controversial Service Claims Another Victim, Adding to Criticism

The bane of many guests’ existence, the paid services of Disney Genie+ and Lightning Lane have officially claimed another victim.

Going to the Walt Disney World Resort in Central Florida or the Disneyland Resort in Southern California is a dream come true for many visitors. The magic of these iconic destinations is unparalleled, with each park offering a unique blend of excitement, wonder, and nostalgia. Whether you explore the enchanting Magic Kingdom or the adventurous Disney’s Animal Kingdom theme park, there’s something for everyone to enjoy at a Disney Park.

disneyland resort pixar pier
Pixar Pier, Disney California Adventure Park, Disneyland Resort / Credit: Disney

Beyond the enchanting attractions and thrilling rides that Disney is renowned for, guests also have the opportunity to use the new version of the FastPass system, i.e., the Disney Genie system, to make their Disney vacation easier. Lightning Lane provides a way to skip the regular lines and enjoy expedited access to some of the most popular rides and attractions.

The introduction of Disney Genie+, Lightning Lane, and Individual Lightning Lane was intended to offer visitors a new level of flexibility and control over their park experience, allowing them to maximize their time and make the most of their visit. This said, many fans would agree, that hasn’t quite been their experience with the service at all.

Space Mountain Disneyland
Space Mountain, Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort / Credit: Disney

Despite the many benefits of lightning lanes, delays have occurred and impacted the overall Disney experience for many. These can be caused by various factors, such as ride maintenance, unexpected technical issues, or high demand during peak times.

Most recently, the Lightning Lane service once again failed to live up to expectations and claimed another victim. However, this is in a slightly different vein. Rather than LL impacting a guest who had purchased the Disney Genie+ Lightning Lane service, in this case, LL impacted a guest who hadn’t purchased it.

The guest took to Reddit to explain, “Got in line at Space Mtn. Standby line. Said 80 minutes. 90 minutes later and I was still in the old Starrcade building. Got on the ride at 163 minutes. There were no delays or stoppages. One CM said they were running in “slow mode” today. Not sure what that means. Anyways, longest extra wait time I’ve ever experienced.”

disneyland jungle cruise
Jungle Cruise, Disneyland Resort / Credit: Disney

One guest jumped in to explain what might have caused this sudden change, and the culprit was simple: Lightning Lane.

The guest wrote,

Two words:

Lightning Lane

The slow mode the CM was referring to is most likely the ratio they were running at the Lightning Lane and Stand By merge point.

Normal operations is 20 Stand By guests for every 80 Lightning Lane guests. When the LL gets backed up, they can increase that ratio all the way to 1 Stand by guest for every 99 Lightning Lane guests.

Delays are expected and reasonable in an environment as hectic and packed as the Disney theme park, of course. That’s reasonable in and of itself. However, Disney Resort guests are particularly frustrated about this being the case for Disney Genie, considering its paid nature.

the walt disney company
The Walt Disney Company / Credit: Disney

Another guest also added that the Disney Genie system can be impacted, and this kind of situation is even more likely to arise if, for example, the park experiences a ride shut down.

A third added,

Yep. Its a broken system.

Never had these issues with paper FastPass before they went digital. If you held a FastPass for a ride that was down during your time slot, then that FP would be valid ONLY at that ride for the rest of the day, and only if it came back online. There were no “Multi-Experience Passes” to wreck other FP and Stand By queues. The only time you were given an MEP was if you were evacuated from an attraction.

FP/LL queues were never this impacted or backed up like they are today.

Ultimately, Disney has made clear many times that Genie+ and Lightning Lane are not going anywhere and that the product has served them well. However, it would certainly be helpful to iron out these kinks in the future for guests who end up doubling their wait times because of understandable mechanical issues at the parks.

This post Disney’s Controversial Service Claims Another Victim, Adding to Criticism appeared first on Disney Fanatic.

Priyanka Kumar

Priyanka is a writer, artist, avid reader, and travel enthusiast based in Chicago. In her free time, she is probably walking by the lake, catching up on the latest releases on TV, or spending inordinate amounts of time rewatching Moana, Encanto, and her Disney Channel life-long favorites Zack and Cody wreak havoc on the Tipton.

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