How NOT to Wait in Line: Get there at Rope Drop!

One of the most successful strategies for navigating Disneyworld in the time that you have is to have a real plan about how you are going to do everything, and minimize waiting in line.

Here is the best tip I know:
Run, don’t walk to your computer– (Wait you are already there!) and order this book:

It has hundreds of tips about how to make the most of your time in the Magic Kingdom.  Well worth the price of the book!

I think the #1 tip that worked for us was getting there at Ropedrop.  Ropedrop is the term for the moment when the park opens.  While it may seem antithetical to get up early when you are on vacation, it ends up working out, because you have more time having fun, and less time waiting in lines.  And getting up early isn’t SO bad…
Each morning we hauled our butts out of bed early, went to one of the three parks that wasn’t having Early Extra Magic Hours (which are explained in the book, but are basically times when the park is open only to Disney Resort guests) and got there about 1/2 an hour before rope drop. We’d wait, then we’d run to the attractions we wanted to get on, ride them and fast pass them, (so we’d ride them at least twice) and have a great time.  Because we were near first in the park, we rarely had to wait more than ten minutes for the first ride, and the second ride on the popular attraction was fast-passed.  In between, we’d go on several other rides that hadn’t quite gotten up to full capacity.  We waited no longer than 20 minutes for a ride (if the time to wait was more than 20 minutes, we went to a different attraction.

Around 1 or 2 pm, just as the crowds are getting thickest, we’d eat lunch, go back to the hotel, chill out, nap, etc, and then come back to a different park (one that was having LATE Extra Magic Hours) and eat dinner, and then ride rides late. Other than the opening 1/2 an hour that we waited, we rarely waited in lines more than 20 minutes long (and we were there July 4 weekend, one of the busiest times of the year!)