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TRIP REPORT: Solo Visit, W 7/14 & TH 7/15

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  • TRIP REPORT: Solo Visit, W 7/14 & TH 7/15

    I got back yesterday from a quick 2-day Solo Trip Park Hopper to bother parks. Day One I started at DL and Day Two I started at CA. I made reservations about 10 days earlier as reports of lower park attendance appealed to me. In the meantime, I read many reviews of rising attendance but was hoping that taking advantage of Single Rider Lines (SRL) would work to my advantage. More on that later...

    On Wed. 7/14, I walked across the street to the Harbor Entrance at 6:35AM and estimated about 200 people in front of me. I got Rise BG 106 @ 7AM and security opened up at 7:15AM. At 7:30AM, I was about halfway down Mainstreet for Rope Drop. (Rope Drop was at the end of Mainstreet.)

    I walked on to Star Tours and did SR on Space Mountain (first time and I highly recommend it as I don’t know how many hundreds of people I passed! Matterhorn was still closed so I went to Galaxy’s Edge for the first time. The queue for Smuggler’s Run was 10 min and I went through SRL immediately afterwards. From there, I headed over to Haunted Mansion with about a 15 min wait. From there I met up with some friends that were coincidentally at the parks for their first time back in 19 months @ Olga’s Cantina. I was allowed in once my friend was able to come out and get me; otherwise there was a quite a standby wait.

    From there, I headed back over to SLR Matterhorn and about a 10 min wait. Then, over to Jungle Cruise and about a 25 min wait. After that, I had my first Dole Whip ever (after 6 previous visits to the park) and watched a show at the Tiki Room (also a first for me) as it was getting hotter and the AC and a chance to rest were in order.

    By that time it was Noon and I mobile ordered from Plaza Inn. From there, I went over to Big Thunder that posted a 30 min wait, but was only actually 18 min. Then, it was getting closer to my BG being called for Rise, so I did SRL at Smuggler’s Run again. About 20 min later, @ 2:30PM, BG 106 was called (Rise went down several times in the morning) to give you an idea of the BG number and how long it took to get called. I entered the SRL for Splash Man @ 3:15PM. Posted time was 75 min, but it took me a full 40 min before I could board the ride.

    Indy was my next stop but it was down so I went on Snow White for the first time. Posted time was 30 min, actual 20 min. Indy was still down (and not accepting Single Riders at any point during my two days as they said it was “too busy” for single riders which I thought was odd) so I waited for the DL Railroad. I waited over 40 min to board as it was very busy.

    At that point, it was after 6PM and I went over to CA and Radiator Springs Racers which was posted as a 90 min wait, but single rider was 30 min wait. Incredicoaster was next on my list and I joined the SRL which was easily over 100 people long and went all the way back to the ice cream stand. The line for ice cream and Incredicoaster conjoined! After about 5 minutes, a CM informed us that the line was really not moving and it would be best to join standby with the 45 min wait, which I did. Actual wait time was 30 min. All wait times were super long for everything else and I wanted to make it back over to DL or fireworks. I got a root beer float from Ghiridelli’s and headed back over and rode Big Thunder 2x in a row. Posted wait time was 25 min but only actually a 5 min wait.

    Finally after Mix Magic Fireworks, a nighttime ride on Matterhorn. Posted time was 35 minutes, SR was 15.


    DAY TWO: CA

    I arrived at the same point on Harbor as previous day and ended up with BG 66 for Webslingers (more on that later). First stop was Guardians and they were only running 2 gantry lifts out of 6! <I find that inexcusable and don’t know if it was as a staffing issue or something else. They kept admonishing the line to move along.>. It took me 50 min to get through the queue on the first ride of the day! A quick breakfast at Pym’s and then on to Toy Story, posted wait time of 40 min, but actual was 20.

    Then over to Soaring with a posted wait time of 45 min, but actual was 25.

    Then back to RSR with a 105 min wait time and the longest SRL I’ve ever seen: all the way back to the entrance of the standby queue! Actual wait time was 45 in SRL.

    Ordered lunch and visited Ariel’s Undersea Adventure to pass the time. Posted and actual was 15 min. After lunch and with WS still down (it was 11:40AM and they were still stuck at BG29 which is where they were at 9AM, I opted to throw away that pass and hope for the Rise Noon pass. I was successful with BG 171 (which ended up being called at 4PM for reference). CA was packed and many rides were down so I opted to go back to my hotel for a break.

    I returned at 4PM for Rise and then HM with posted and actual wait time of 25min. Indy was posted at 30 and would have been actual, but a 15 min ride shut down while I was in the queue made it 45 min overall. Then Jungle Cruise (with a much better skipper than the day before) and a 15 min actual wait time. Finally, a 15 min wait at Star Tours and then Fireworks and back to my hotel.


    Overall General Thoughts: Glad I went, but was a little underwhelmed by the whole visit. Both parks were very busy.


    Originally, I wasn't too concerned as I thought I could knock out many single-rider line rides, multiple times. Instead, the parks were so packed or understaffed, that I was only able to get in a single ride once on several attractions! Speaking of Guardians, it never got any better the rest of the day (or the day before that based upon checking wait times on the app)! When I got off the ride @ 9AM, they had closed the gates and were no longer allowing any more guests to queue up and had a 2 hour wait time posted. The parks are crowded enough as it is. They weren't even allowing Single Riders on Indy because "it was too busy" (which is what several CM's told me throughout the day whenever I checked). Galaxy's Edge is a wide open space dedicated more to selling overpriced merchandise than anything else. Avenger's Campus is the same. There was one garbage can literally overflowing with trash and a bunch of trash piled up around it in the queue for Incredicoaster. Something just felt off about this visit. The MixMagic Fireworks show was cool. The character interactions that I observed were lame. Not sure there is much risk of contamination being protected by full costuming in most cases (not counting any character not already wearing a mask such as princesses, etc). I felt bad for the little kids that had to have their picture taken with characters 20 feet away and in the background. Not sure I feel the need to go back to DL anytime soon. I cannot imagine the experience will get any better.

  • #2
    On the Indiana Jones single rider line - the ADA line and the single rider line share the same elevator. The ADA line gets priority over running single rider, so if the ADA line is booked with maximum or close to maximum reservations, they don't run the single rider line and just let ADA guests go freely.

    Incredicoaster's single rider line is always a joke. 4-5 years ago the single rider for Screamin' was amazing - you'd wait 3-4 people MAX every time - even in peak season. About a year before it closed it started to get really long for screamin', and ever since Incredicoaster opened the single rider is almost always longer than standby. The standby for that ride does move incredibly fast though, so it's not that much of an issue.

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    • #3
      Thanks for sharing! So interesting hearing your thoughts on your trip just weeks after I took mine. And also interesting to note that you went on 2 weekdays, and not even on the weekend! My trip was 4th of July weekend, (a Saturday and Sunday respectively) and while it was busy and crowded as well, I didn't run into long queues hardly at all and if so I either waited until the line was shorter or did single rider where I could. Not what I expected for a holiday weekend and I was pleasantly surprised. Honestly the train was probably the thing I waited the longest for!
      Hooray for your Dole Whip and Tiki Room experience, I also took some time to relax and do that :-)


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      • #4
        Sounds similar to my trip, though it sounds like you hit more rides and re-rides than we did on the first day alone!

        The CM issue is a major problem, and it sounds like as days go by it's getting worse. It's not surprising how much it really affects a person's trip. Also, the overcrowding sounds like a return to the norm, which is a little ridiculous given how there was a lot of chirping about how Disney was charging top dollar to provide a premium guest experience. While it sounds like your crowded day was similar to my crowded day, it gets very close to intolerable at points, especially when you add the California heat.

        Regardless, it's a Disney day, and it sounds like you got some fun out of it. Thank you for sharing your trip with us!

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        • #5
          Thanks for sharing, Gaubster. Such a shame that trash cans were overflowing. On the plus side, you got your Dole Whip! I love the Dole Whip (both pineapple and the pineapple/raspberry swirl). A Dole Whip and the Tiki Room are a brilliant way to beat the heat.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Gaubster View Post
            Originally, I wasn't too concerned as I thought I could knock out many single-rider line rides, multiple times. Instead, the parks were so packed or understaffed, that I was only able to get in a single ride once on several attractions! Speaking of Guardians, it never got any better the rest of the day (or the day before that based upon checking wait times on the app)! When I got off the ride @ 9AM, they had closed the gates and were no longer allowing any more guests to queue up and had a 2 hour wait time posted. The parks are crowded enough as it is. They weren't even allowing Single Riders on Indy because "it was too busy" (which is what several CM's told me throughout the day whenever I checked). Galaxy's Edge is a wide open space dedicated more to selling overpriced merchandise than anything else. Avenger's Campus is the same. There was one garbage can literally overflowing with trash and a bunch of trash piled up around it in the queue for Incredicoaster. Something just felt off about this visit. The MixMagic Fireworks show was cool. The character interactions that I observed were lame. Not sure there is much risk of contamination being protected by full costuming in most cases (not counting any character not already wearing a mask such as princesses, etc). I felt bad for the little kids that had to have their picture taken with characters 20 feet away and in the background. Not sure I feel the need to go back to DL anytime soon. I cannot imagine the experience will get any better.
            Agreed on Galaxy's Edge. SO much wasted space just for retail. Yes, I understand how it's supposed to look like a market, and I love that part of GE, but then adding Droid Depot + Savi's + Dok-Ondar's + First Order Cargo, it starts to get comically sad. Such a cash grab. I'm hearing Avenger's Campus isn't as bad, but it sounds like you're saying it's similar, so that's unfortunate. At least the dining options look better. I can deal with lots of food offerings, but not merch ... that's just my personal preference...

            That's upsetting to hear about the overflowing trash cans.

            Based on your helpful report and what I'm seeing on YouTube, the parks are packed just as bad as always, and in this post-FastPass world, it's painful to get on some of the E-tickets. Sure the standby times are shorter than in the FP era, but if you're like me, you don't wait standby ... especially when you have two little kids like me. I'll take a 90 minutes stand by + FP over a 60 minutes standby and no FP any day!

            We decided to only do Oogie Boogie bash. I was tempted to buy the 3 day CA pass and go see HM in both forms, but we already have passes to Legoland, which is 10 minutes from my house. One of my kids is too scared to even get on the Ninjago ride (basically Webslingers), so it'd be a waste to go to DL where he'll be crapping himself on HM, PotC, etc. I'll wait until the excess cash burns off... and DL returns to more normal.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by brerphysicist View Post

              . I'll wait until the excess cash burns off... and DL returns to more normal.
              LMAO!!! dont hold your breath either...as I fear this is the new "Norm"

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              • #8
                Until then, we'll just do the ticketed special events such as Oogie Boogie Bash. Less people (for now ... I fear that could change), more entertainment, and an all-around better value.

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