US Disney Parks to Offer Faster Entry for a Fee

LOS ANGELES, Aug. 18 (Reuters) – Tired of long waits for the Haunted Mansion or the Millennium Falcon? Walt Disney Co’s U.S. theme parks will offer a payment option for faster access to some of the most popular rides, the company said on Wednesday.

The feature is part of the rollout this fall of Disney Genie, a digital tool designed to help park visitors maximize their time in U.S. Disney Parks, now operating at limited capacity due to the COVID-19 pandemic and requiring masks when visitors are inside.

Disney Genie will be free through the Disneyland and My Disney Experience apps, the company said in a blog post.

An upgrade called Disney Genie + will give access to “Lightning Lanes” for faster, on-time entry to over 15 attractions at Disneyland in California and over 40 rides at Walt Disney World in Florida.

Disney Genie + will cost $ 15 per ticket per day at Walt Disney World in Florida and $ 20 at Disneyland in California.

The company will also allow visitors to pay individually for Lightning Lane privileges for up to two selected rides per day. The price for this access has not been announced.

The new line options will replace the faster FastPass lines at both parks and the MaxPass lines at Disneyland. MaxPass, launched in 2017, allows Disneyland viewers to pay to reserve FastPass access from their phone for $ 20 per day.

The free Disney Genie service also aims to reduce wait times by guiding customers to their most coveted experiences at the optimal time. Disney chief executive Bob Chapek, who previously headed the theme parks division, told analysts last week: “Guests are going to spend less time waiting and more time having fun.”

Visitors can tell Disney Genie if they’re most interested in Star Wars, Princesses, Superheroes, or Pixar, for example, and what rides, restaurants, and shows they’d like to experience. The service will offer routes based on real-time information and provide updates as circumstances change, the company said. (Reporting by Lisa Richwine; Editing by Howard Goller)

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