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Fans fume at Disney World’s change to Genie reservations

Visitors to Walt Disney World will soon be able to reserve seats for attractions up to a week in advance, a change that has only sparked anger among some theme park fans.

of Announced by the House of Mouse The company said Tuesday it will rename its “Genie+” feature, which gives customers access to “Lightning Lanes” that allow them to skip lines and shorten wait times, to “Lightning Lane Multi-Pass.”

Starting next month, the paid service will allow visitors to reserve up to three attractions a week in advance at one of four theme parks: Magic Kingdom, Hollywood Studios, Animal Kingdom or Epcot.

The Genie+ system, introduced three years ago, requires guests to log into the site every morning to reserve a spot on a ride, and many guests have complained about having to wake up at 7 a.m. for this tedious ritual.

In a statement, Disney said the change was made to allow guests “more time to plan their visit to the parks.” During peak travel seasons, Disney guests can wait up to 85 minutes for attractions.

Disney has announced changes to its “Genie+” feature, which allows guests to skip lines at attractions. Reuters

However, reservations made one week in advance are only available to Guests staying at Disney Resort Hotels; all other Guests can make reservations from three days in advance.

Disney World visitors will pay an extra $15 for each “Genie+” ride, while Disneyland guests will pay $20. The prices for the revised tiers will vary depending on when guests book their trip to the theme parks.

Visitors to the Magic Kingdom can choose from a variety of rides and experiences, including Peter Pan’s Flight, Space Mountain, It’s a Small World, Aladdin’s Magic Carpet Rides, Pirates of the Caribbean, Dumbo the Flying Elephant and Mickey’s PhilharMagic.

Epcot attractions that can be reserved in advance using the MultiPass system include Mission: Space and The Secret Adventures of Nemo and Friends.

On social media, some Disney fans vented their frustration at the new plan, calling it confusing and expressing outrage that the tiering meant some of their favorite rides were excluded.

Disney visitors who select the Lightning Lane Single Pass (previously known as Individual Lightning Lane Entries) can purchase up to two tickets per day in advance to popular attractions like Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind and Tron Lightcycle.

Theme park visitors will be able to reserve ride timeslots up to one week in advance. Tribune News Service via Getty Images

“They don’t even let you pick the three you want…the whole ‘different tiers’ thing of choosing is rubbish.” A user wrote to X.

Others pointed out that advance ride reservations were once part of “Fastpass,” the precursor to the “Genie+” system, and Disney offered it for free. The old “Fastpass+” system allowed guests staying at Disney resorts to reserve rides up to 30 days in advance.

Disney guests have long complained about long wait times for rides and attractions at the Orlando theme park. TNS via Getty Images

“They’re still charging for things that were previously offered for free.” Another X user wrote: Ann X users added: “So it’s like FastPass+, but now you have to pay for it?”

Others, however, say the revised system will put annual passholders at a disadvantage.

“This is a real disadvantage to pass holders.” Written by 1 user Xadded, “There won’t be many seats left for AP… this is the worst.”

Disney has made numerous tweaks to its theme parks in recent years to reduce crowds and increase revenue, including reservation requirements and other restrictions put in place because of the pandemic, though the company has recently been relaxing some of those rules.

Disney’s Magic Kingdom Resort near Orlando, Florida, recorded more than 17 million visitors in 2022, making it the world’s most-visited theme park.

The system was designed to allow guests to avoid standby lines and reduce wait times.

A Disney spokesperson referred questions to the company’s blog post about the changes.