child with Mickey
  • On Feb 11, 2022
    Jackie from Hampshire Asked Please note that experiences, policies, pricing and other offerings are subject to change and may have changed since the date of this answer.

    Are the characters signing autographs at present ? Also I see there is a list of 8 individual Lightning Lane options over 4 parks. How do we book these ? Are these free ? The rest of the lightning lane options are listed as Genie+ which we can purchase.

    Hi Jackie! Welcome to planDisney!

    I hope you are as excited as I am for your upcoming Walt Disney World Resort stay! There are so many new and exciting experiences that are happening including the Walt Disney World 50th Anniversary Celebration! Make sure to check out both new nighttime spectaculars at the Magic Kingdom Park and EPCOT that are part of the celebration! Each show is captivating and incredible in its own ways. Along with the new shows, there have been some changes and additions to the park experience that may be different since your last visit.

    One of the biggest additions has been the introduction of Disney Genie, Disney Genie+, and Individual Lightning Lane services.

    • Disney Genie is a complimentary service that you can access using your My Disney Experience account that will provide tips and recommendations to help you navigate the parks efficiently.
    • Disney Genie+ is a paid service that you can purchase for your entire stay or just on individual days. Purchasing this service will allow you to make Lightning Lane reservations for specific attractions and bypass the standby queue. There are a number of attractions at each park that is a part of this service and you will have access to all of these upon purchase. Your first selection can be made prior to park opening starting at 7 AM EST the day of your visit. You will then select the next available time slot for your first attraction. Once you enter the park and ride that attraction, you will be able to book the next one of your choosing. 
    • Individual Lightning Lanes consists of two popular attractions at each of the four theme parks and are not part of purchasing Disney Genie+. To book a Lightning Lane for these attractions, you will need to purchase your time slot individually. The price will vary based on the attraction and your park date. You will also only be able to book at 7 AM EST for these attractions if you are staying in a Disney Resorts Collection hotel or other select hotels. Otherwise, you will not be able to make your purchase until the official park opening. For example, if you want to bypass the standby queue for Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance, you will need to log on to your My Disney Experience account when the time is appropriate to do so, and select this attraction under the "Tip Board". It will provide you with time slots throughout the day to ride this attraction.

    I just recently returned from a weeklong stay, and I utilized Disney Genie+ and Individual Lightning Lanes throughout the week. I found both services to be fairly easy to use and helped us maximize each of our park days by cutting down on wait times. The Individual Lightning Lane service was great because it allowed us to pick the time we wanted to experience that attraction. We were then able to set up the rest of our day around that time.

    Walt Disney World has started introducing modified character experiences again at many of the theme parks. Currently, you will need to wear a mask if the experience is indoors and keep a distance while visiting. You can take pictures with them but they are not signing autographs at this time. We had a great meet and greet with Mickey Mouse himself. He is meeting with Guests at the Town Square Theater decked out in his 50th Celebration costume. 

    Jackie, I hope this information is helpful for your upcoming stay. Have a magical vacation!

    See ya real soon!
    Greg 

thumbnail image for Greg

Meet the Panelist: Greg, South Carolina

Hello friends! Greg here from Charleston, SC. I am a Disney-loving husband and dad to two wonderful daughters. Walt Disney World Resort offers everything you want in a vacation and touches all the senses. From the sights to sounds and even the smells, there is something for everyone to enjoy! When our family is not riding "it’s a small world" or going on a Journey Into Imagination With Figment, we are readily planning our next Walt Disney World Resort vacation. Learn More About Greg

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