• On Dec 17, 2019
    Allen from AL Asked Note: This answer was provided prior to the change to planDisney and may still contain references to Disney Parks Moms Panel.

    Experiences, policies, pricing and other offerings are subject to change and may have changed since the date of this answer.

    What time do we really need to depart our hotel to arrive at the front of the line for rope drop? What time for bus? What time is we drive ourselves?

    Hi Allen!

    I remember the first time my husband visited Walt Disney World with my family and we were waiting at the train station at the Magic Kingdom for the park to open. On that first day, he thought I was crazy for doing rope drop, and told me he wanted to sleep in the next day. Well, guess who is now all about the early mornings at Disney?

    The best answer would depend a little bit on when your trip is scheduled. If you will be visiting next week, the most popular time of the year to visit, you may want to add a few extra minutes to this plan. Also, you mention being “at the front of the line for rope drop.” Being the very first, at the front of the line, can be a bit more challenging and while I cannot guarantee you will be FIRST, I can give you some tips for getting to the parks for rope drop.

    For the Magic Kingdom I always plan to leave my resort room one hour before park opening and use Disney bus transportation. Typically resort buses begin 45 minutes before park opening, but sometimes they do arrive earlier. You can now use My Disney Experience Mobile App to check bus times from your resort! If you are going to drive, I would still leave an hour in advance, leaving time to take the Monorail or ferry to the park entrance. I recommend always taking the bus to the Magic Kingdom because of this issue.

    For Epcot, taking the bus one hour before is also recommended. If driving, I would leave 45 minutes before park opening.

    If you’ll be heading for Avatar Flight of Passage at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park, I recommend driving, and leaving your hotel 1 hour and 15 minutes before park opening, to arrive before resort Guests using the bus system. If you won’t be heading to Avatar Flight of Passage, and just want to enjoy the rest of the park, taking the bus an hour in advance should be fine.

    For Disney’s Hollywood Studios, you should anticipate large crowds, due to the popularity of Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance. I would not recommend the bus, and I would drive, leaving your hotel 1 hour and 15 minutes before park opening. The all-important Boarding Group needed to access Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance will not be distributed until official park opening time, but you’ll need to be inside the park to be able to sign up for one.

    I hope this helps you make your plan for each day, Allen. I love the excitement of rope drop. May the Force be with you!
    - Kate
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Meet the Panelist: Kate, Indiana

"Welcome Home!" I'm Kate, a mom and nurse from Indiana. A lifelong Disney fan, Disney Vacation Club opened a world of vacation possibilities for our family. I’ve traveled with young children and those young at heart, planned romantic trips for two and made FastPass+ reservations for an entire marching band! Whether dining with Mickey, surfing in Hawaii, or relaxing around the pool we make the most of our Disney Vacation Club Membership. For this nurse, every day is better with a little dose of Disney! Learn More About Kate

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