Father and son walking through BOG
  • On Jan 21, 2023
    Theresa from NY Asked Please note that experiences, policies, pricing and other offerings are subject to change and may have changed since the date of this answer.

    I am a DVC member who hasn’t been to the parks since 2015. How do I start my ticket planning and is there any standing in line for rides any more?

    Hiya Theresa!

    Welcome Home!  I am so happy you are coming to your home away from home to immerse yourself in the magic of the Walt Disney World theme parks.  This year is a special one, with the opening of Tron Lightcycle and the return of the fan-favorite "Happily Ever After" nighttime spectacular to Magic Kingdom Park, just to name a few of the exciting things happening at Walt Disney World Resort this year. You can also join the party celebrating 100 years of Disney by picking up some of the special anniversary merchandise while you are there.

    So, let's get planning your exciting vacation, Theresa.  First, make sure you have a My Disney Experience account and have downloaded the My Disney Experience app to your phone. It will be your Fairy Godmother during your trip, helping your wishes come true every day.

    At this time, to enter the theme parks, you need both a valid theme park entry ticket and a theme park reservation. I recommend checking the theme park reservation availability first for the dates of your visit, then purchasing the tickets, and then immediately reserving your spot for the theme parks of your choice on your ticket dates.  You need two steps because you can't make the reservation without the ticket, and you want to buy a ticket for an available park. You will need BOTH to enter the park.

    You CAN still do Park Hopper tickets, and at this time you do not need a reservation for the second park, as long as you visit the park you have the reservation for FIRST. You can enter your next park as early as 2:00 p.m. and stay until the park closes, but keep an eye on the Hours & Events Calendar as times can change. 

    If you are staying at a Disney Vacation Club Resort, or any Disney Resort, you have access to Early Theme Park Entry, which will give you entrance to the theme park 30 minutes before it opens for general admission.  Deluxe Resort Guests (which includes Disney Vacation Club Resorts) can also enjoy Extended Theme Park Entry at specific parks on specific dates, so be sure and check those so you can maximize the magic.

    Now, once you have all of those pieces in place, you can make Advance Dining Reservations 60 days out from your Check-In date, which as a Disney Resort Guest, you can make for the duration of your stay.  There are a few new restaurants, and I recommend Space 220 which is my overall favorite both for the theming and the food. It's literally out of this world.

    Walt Disney World Resort also now uses the Disney Genie+ Lightning Lane and Individual Lightning Lane for getting one jump ahead of the lines for select attractions.  You can purchase this option at the time of purchasing tickets or, for one day, beginning at 12:00 a.m. on the day you are visiting.  However, you can't select your attractions until 7:00 a.m. on the day you are entering the park (for Disney Resort Guests.) The Disney Genie+ option gives you access to select rides, and each park has one or two that are Individual Lightning Lane, which is a separate fee. You can do either or both.

    I hope this helps, Theresa! If you have more Disney planning questions, stop back here at planDisney.

    See ya real soon!

thumbnail image for Keri

Meet the Panelist: Keri, Massachusetts

Hi there, I'm Keri from Massachusetts, a wife and mom to preteen twins and a teen. Since my first magical visit to Walt Disney World at age three, I've loved all things Disney. My husband found his passion for pixie dust on our honeymoon and his first visit to a Disney park. Soon after, we joined Disney Vacation Club, which has afforded us unforgettable family vacations for the last 20 years. Disney Vacation Club has helped us create our most magical vacation memories. I can't wait to help you plan yours. Learn More About Keri

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