Almost every parent who has been to Walt Disney World has had a “magical day” go wrong and turn into a “meltdown day”. Maybe it was the hot sun of July or August, the snail like pace of the line on Dumbo, or one too many verses from “it’s a small world”, but the spot I’ve seen it happen most often is Fantasyland.
The trick to successfully going through Fantasyland, or any of Disney’s parks, is to have a plan, and to use fastpass to your advantage. On my most recent trip to Disney World I used this plan successfully on two days, over the Memorial Day weekend, so unless you go during Christmas, Easter or July 4th you shouldn’t have a problem getting it to work for you.
First off you’ll need to be in the park between 9:00AM and 9:30AM. When I say in the park I mean on Main Street, not on the monorail or ferry, not parking your white mini-van in Goofy aisle 53, and not sleeping in because gosh-darn it yore on vacation. As soon as you can go directly to Fantasyland, your first two rides will be It’s a Small World and Peter Pan, the order doesn’t really matter. After those two rides, head towards Dumbo in Fantasyland. At this point you’ll need to split up, one parent should take the kids and get on the line for Dumbo, The other parent will take all of the tickets over to Winnie the Pooh, and get fastpasses for everyone. You’ll need to resist the temptation to get on the ride now, you will be rewarded later. At this time of the day your fastpass should give you a ride time between 30 to 60 minutes after the current time. If you look at the picture you’ll see the fastpass was issued at 9:25 and the ride time is between 10:05 and 11:05. You should also notice the time down at the bottom that says you’ll be able to get another fastpass after 10:10, this is crucial. Go back and join your party waiting on line at the Dumbo ride. If any of your children are girls (I have two) chances are they will want to see Ariel, so get on line after Dumbo. If you haven taken a bio break this is good spot, as the bathroom is right next to Arils Grotto. You’ll need to do a time check at this point. It should be after 10:05 but you should still have enough time to ride the carousel before 11:05 (when your fastpass expires). Before you leave the area you’ll want to get a second set of fastpasses, this time for Mickey Philharmagic.
This is a key trick to maximizing your Disney Vacation, getting two fastpasses, whenever possible. Now you want to use your fastpasses, for the Winnie the Pooh ride. After Winnie the Pooh you want to head over to Mad Hatter’s Tea Cup Ride. This line can be fairly slow moving on busy days. After the tea cups it’s over to Snow White’s Scary Adventure. You’ll need to check the wait time and compare it to the fastpasses you still have for Philharmagic. If you have enough time go on Snow White then Philharmagic then do, otherwise go on Philharmagic first, then Snow White. I used this plan on two consecutive days and finished between 12:30 and 1:00 on both days.
You should be pretty tired and kind of hungry by now, so head on over to Cosmic Ray’s Starlight Café for lunch and well deserved rest.