Genie+ and Lightning Lanes are headed to Disneyland and Disney’s California Adventure (DCA) very soon. Perfecting the Magic is here to help you understand how Genie+ and Lightning Lanes work so that you can budget accordingly and make the most out of your Disney park days!
How to Use the Free Disney Genie App in Disneyland
Disneyland and DCA are bringing Disney Genie to their parks very soon. This free digital service offers in-app planning tools, suggested itineraries, mobile ordering, and attraction wait times. The base service, included in the price of your park ticket, is “designed to create your best Disney day” by offering “tips that can help you reduce time in lines, discover magic around every corner, and take the guesswork out of “what’s next.” But, does it really?
While the standard Genie feature may be helpful for Disneyland novices, the vast majority of Disneyland and DCA visitors are returning locals. We’re unsure that seasoned Disney visitors will get much out of the free features provided as the projected wait times tend to be inaccurate, and experienced Disneyland fans tend to know the parks inside and out. We can’t see this demographic benefiting much from guides.
Still, Disneyland newbies may find value in this complimentary service, and we will say that Disney Genie makes mobile ordering more straightforward, and that’s something we’re happy to see. But, generally speaking, the Genie app doesn’t bring much to the table.
What about the paid options?
For an additional $20 per day, per person, per park ticket, Disneyland and DCA offer Disney Genie+. But, how does Genie+ work at Disneyland?
Genie+ is an add-on service allows park-goers access to Lightning Lanes (special attraction entrances), with shortened available wait times for select rides and experiences.
Genie+ also includes unlimited PhotoPass downloads on the day of your visit. It’s important to note that you may only make one selection at a time when using Genie+ but may book another attraction as soon as you can into your Lightning Lane, which can be confusing. We’ll cover this more later.
In Alphabetical Order, Genie+ Disneyland Attractions Include
o Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
o Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters
o Haunted Mansion
o Indiana Jones Adventure
o “it’s a small world”
o Matterhorn Bobsleds
o Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run
o Roger Rabbit’s Car Toon Spin
o Space Mountain
o Splash Mountain
o Star Tours
Genie+ DCA Attractions Include
o Goofy’s Sky School
o Grizzly River Run
o Guardians of the Galaxy, Mission: Breakout!
o Monsters, Inc. Mike + Sulley to the Rescue!
o Soarin’ Around the World
o Toy Story Midway Mania
Circling back to Lightning Lanes and attraction selection—while it’s true that you may only select one ride at a time, it’s essential to plan your time wisely. Once you’re scanned in for a Lightning Lane, begin looking for another return time opening with Genie+. If you forget to check in and are worried you’ve wasted time, don’t be. You can select another attraction 120 minutes after your first selection.
Be sure to plan your day accordingly, and don’t be afraid to order a Monte Cristo or take a break while you wait for your next attraction to open. Sure, you’ll want to get your money’s worth, but you shouldn’t ruin your Disneyland park day by spending every second scrolling through Genie+. Trust us; the Disney vibes fall way off if you’re ignoring the atmosphere around you.
Overall, Genie+ makes sense if you hate standing in lines and want to ride a ton of rides. However, it gets expensive quickly. Especially if you’re paying for more than yourself. Families using Genie+ will be hit the hardest and should only pay for Genie+ on days they know they want to ride as much as possible.
Individual Attraction Selection
Of course, the most popular rides are excluded from Genie+ at both Disneyland and DCA. Want to ride Rise of the Resistance or Radiator Springs Racers? Looking to visit Web Slingers: A Spider-Man Adventure? You can skip the line by paying for an Individual Attraction Selection.
This option is available on up to two selections a day, and you can expect they’ll cost between $15-20 per ride with a limit of two per day. This can be cost-prohibitive, but if you’re itching to ride Rise, it has its benefits. Just prepare yourself now so you don’t suffer sticker shock later.
What This Means for Disneyland Park Days
Genie+ and Individual Attraction Selections come at a higher price than just their fees alone. Standby lines increase when more visitors choose to pay to skip the lines, and this impacts everyone. This will be especially true at night when Key Holders show up to make the most of their passes after work. Expect nights to be crazy and wait times to increase across the board.
While it’s your choice to buy Genie+ and Individual Attraction Selections, they may be the only viable choice on busy park days. There are benefits here, but drawbacks too, especially if you remove yourself from the magic of the Disney experience by burying yourself in your phone to maximize value.
Is Genie+ Worth It?
Will you be paying for Genie+ and Individual Attraction Selection at Disneyland and DCA? Tell us in the comments below.
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