If you’re planning to hit up Hollywood Studios, knowing how to maximize the Hollywood Studios FastPasses is a must! The FastPass+ system at Disney World allows you to skip some of the waits and maximum your time in the parks. Hollywood Studios FastPasses, similar to the FastPasses available at the other Disney World parks, are included with the price of your ticket, so there is no reason to miss out on your “must do” attractions and shows.
From February through April 2020, Hollywood Studios FastPasses are going through a revamp! Check out the new Tiers and updates below! Be sure to note that Hollywood Studios will now have only three Tier 1 FastPasses and 12 Tier 2 Fastpasses; read on to learn more about the Tiers!
Utilizing a day of FastPasses for Hollywood Studios may seem like a lot of advance preparation for a park with fewer attractions than neighboring Magic Kingdom, but FastPass+ is worth every minute of preparation and allows you to experience Hollywood Studios has to offer in a short window.
Hollywood Studios FastPass is no different from the other Disney World park FastPasses so not only should you book in advance, but you will need to know what attractions and shows at Hollywood Studios have FastPass available and know the Hollywood Studios FastPass Tiers.
This article will tell you everything you need to know about Hollywood Studios FastPasses; but, if you are new to Disney, FastPass+, or need a refresher, I recommend checking out our post on the our favorite FastPass Secrets to help you master the system.
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15 Best (and Worst!) Hollywood Studios FastPass Options
First, let’s start with some of the basics!
What is FastPass+?
FastPass is a free service included with your park ticket for Disney World, including your ticket into Hollywood Studios. It holds your place in line for rides and attractions and allows you to pre-book the fun. The concept is to free guests up to enjoy the most rides and attractions in a shorter amount of time. FastPass also allows for you to typically bypass long lines for rides, attractions, and character meets.
At the attractions that participate, you will get in a separate FastPass line, and those lines do bypass the interactive queues for most rides. Your FastPasses are linked to your MagicBand or to your card style ticket. The most recent version of FastPass is FastPass+, and this system is more of a virtual reservation and scheduling system versus the old school paper system was more of a queuing system that didn’t allow for pre-booking.
In case you didn’t know, you get your first three Fastpasses at Disney entirely for free! If you want to read more, we have an entire post on Disney Fastpass Cost which includes the breakdown of the free options as well as the potential upgrades. YES, you can pay more and get more Fastpasses than come free.
How Do You Get FastPass+ at Hollywood Studios?
Once you have booked your trip with park tickets, or you have an annual pass, you can then book FastPasses. You can use the My Disney Experience app, the My Disney Experience section of the Disney World website, or from a FastPass kiosk in the parks. Your phone, and access to My Disney, will be critical for using your FastPasses at Hollywood Studios so be sure to prepare your phone for your Disney trip.
If you are staying on property at a Disney World hotel, and at most of the Good Neighbor hotels, you can book your FastPass beginning at 7 am EST 60 days from the day of check-in. If you aren’t staying on property, then you can book at 7 am EST 30 days out from the day of check-in. Many guests are no joke when it comes to booking FastPass so some of the best attractions and shows may actually run out of FastPasses shortly after “going live,” so being ready to go on the day you can book is highly recommended.
Utilize the Tap and Grab Technique For The Ultimate Disney FastPass Secret
We have said it once and we will say it again – this may be the best Disney FastPass secret. It will save you a lot of time in line and you’ll get to ride even more rides, and experience more attractions, using this strategy. It does take a little bit of work and understanding the “trick,” but bear with us.
You can continuously modify your FastPasses while in the park in order to maximize your time and ride the most rides. By using the My Disney Experience app while in line at your rides, you get a heads up of what other FastPasses are out there and it negates the “overlapping” window problems you usually encounter when you book your 3 FastPasses.
Here’s an example: You’re headed to Hollywood Studios for the day and you have pre-booked your 3 FastPasses for 10 am, 11:15 am, and 12:45 pm. Once you get in line for your 10 o’clock at your first attraction and have tapped your MagicBand, check the app to modify your 11:15 am FastPass.
You see a 10:35 am for your second attraction instead of the original 11:15 am and you snag that new time! And then once you scan your MagicBand for your second attraction, check to see if there’s an earlier FastPass than your 12:45 pm for for your third attraction. If there is, modify again! Say you snag an 11:45 am for it, and you are done riding your first three FastPasses before you were even supposed to be in line for your third!
Rides and Attractions at Hollywood Studios That Take FastPass+
- Alien Swirling Saucers
- Beauty and the Beast – Live on Stage
- Disney Junior Dance Party!
- For the First Time in Forever: A Frozen Sing-Along Celebration
- Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular
- Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway
- Muppet*Vision 3D
- Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith
- Slinky Dog Dash
- Star Tours: The Adventure Continues!
- Star Wars: Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run
- Toy Story Midway Mania!
- The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror
- Voyage of the Little Mermaid
Rides and Attractions at Hollywood Studios That Do Not Take FastPass+
- Lightning McQueen Racing Academy
- Meet Mike and Sulley
- Meet the Incredibles at Pixar Place
- Star Wars Launch Bay Theater
- Star Wars: A Galatic Spectacular
- Wonderful World of Animation
- Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance
Although we would love to see Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance with FastPasses, the other shows, experiences, and character greetings at Hollywood Studios do not really need them. If you plan your Hollywood Studios FastPasses correctly, you should have no problem hitting everything there is to do at Hollywood Studios in a single day.
For Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance, be sure to check out my guide to Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance before your visit to Hollywood Studios and arrive early to snag your space on the virtual queue!
Know the Tiers for the Rides Before You Book
If you are new to the FastPass+ system, FastPass tiers are a somewhat confusing component to understand, but the Hollywood Studios FastPass tiers are very obvious when you are booking on My Disney Experience as it will not allow you to book inconsistently with the tier rules.
Hollywood Studios FastPasses are divided into Tier 1 and Tier 2 (Epcot and Animal Kingdom use the tier system too). Rides that are in Tier 1 are the most popular and in demand, and typically the harder to score a FastPass for. Tier 2 rides and attractions are just about everything else. When you pre-book your 3 FastPasses, only 1 of the 3 can be for a Tier 1 attraction.
Here is a quick guide to the Hollywood Studios FastPass Tiers:
- Tier 1 – Slinky Dog Dash; Star Wars: Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run; Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway
- Tier 2 – Alien Swirling Saucers; Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster; Toy Story Midway Mania!; Twilight Zone Tower of Terror; Beauty and the Beast – Live on Stage; Fantasmic!; For the First Time in Forever: A Frozen Sing-Along Celebration; Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular; Muppet*Vision 3D; Star Tours: The Adventure Continues; Voyage of the Little Mermaid
Since you can only book one from Tier 1, plan accordingly! Our advice for the best Hollywood Studios FastPass strategy is book your 2nd, 3rd, and 4th choice attractions for the sweet spot of time from 10am-3pm, and try to get in line for your 1st choice at rope drop. You could also book a Tier 1 FastPass as your first ride of the day, and then choose another once you’ve tapped your MagicBand.
As you can see, a quite a few FastPass options at Hollywood Studios, six to be exact, are actually shows. In order to plan the perfect FastPasses, be sure to pay attention to run times. Although FastPasses come with a very small grace period, you do not want to miss a FastPass because you are still enjoying another show or movie.
Also, try not to waste your FastPass on rides with Single Rider lines! At Hollywood Studios, although it has a Tier 1 FastPass, Star Wars: Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run also has a Single Rider line. It may be best to hop in line for the Single Rider for Star Wars: Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run and use your Tier 1 FastPass for Slinky Dog Dash or Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway instead.
Unless of course you want a group photo, since all parties will be separated if using the Single Rider line, or if you want to experience all of the pre-ride attraction rooms and shows. Rock ‘n’ Roller Coast is another Hollywood Studios ride with a Single Rider Line, so you may not want to waste a coveted Tier 2 spot on this ride.
Best Hollywood Studios FastPass+ Options
Best Choice for Tier 1: Slinky Dog Dash
Best Choice for Tier 1: Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway
Mickey And Minnie’s Runaway Railway is easily one of the best rides at Disney. While it replaced the Great Movie Ride and I was very salty about that, it isn’t trying to imitate the Great Movie Ride in any way!
It utilizes the same technology as Rise Of The Resistance above but has no height requirements and is a family-friendly ride! Family-friendly does NOT mean boring in any way, shape, or form! The latest technology, sites, and sounds means that this ride is here to stay!
I recommend getting in line for Mickey And Minnie while you are trying to grab your Rise Of The Resistance Boarding Pass. You will already have a Slinky Dog Fastpass so no worries! If you cannot get a Slinky Dog Fastpass, then go ahead and reverse the strategy!
New attractions at Disney World are usually hits, but there have definitely been some misses. You do not have to worry about that with Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway. It is straight-up delightful from start to finish.
Worst Choice for Tier 1: Star Wars: Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run
I know I will get a lot of hate for this, but I am NOT a Smuggler’s Run fan. As evidenced by the usually shorter waits, most other people aren’t either. I recommend either Slinky Dog OR Mickey And Minnie before you EVER use a Fastpass for Smuggler’s Run.
Compared to the other two rides, it is just pretty average and nothing special.
Star Wars: Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run is a family-friendly, interactive, motion simulator. It is literally nothing more than a simulator and shouldn’t be used over the other AMAZING tier 1 options.
If you want to ride it, I recommend using the Single Rider line!
Hollywood Studios FastPass Tier 1 Conclusion
Best Choice for Tier 2: Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster
Best Choice for Tier 2: Toy Story Midway Mania!
Best Choice for Tier 2: Tower of Terror
Best Tier 2 Choice: Alien Swirling Saucers
If all other Tier 2 choices are gone, and you need to pick more Tier 2 FastPasses for Hollywood Studios, Alien Swirling Saucers is your final best option. Located in the new Toy Story Land, this spinning ride allows you board your own saucer for a spin through outer space with the aliens! Riders must be 32″ or taller to ride and this gentle whirl is a good choice for those with young kids, or those who are a bit more ride-adverse.
Now for the Worst Tier 2 Choices!
Worst Choice for Tier 2: Star Tours – The Adventures Continue!
Worst Choice for Tier 2: For the First Time in Forever: Frozen Sing-Along Celebration
Worst Tier 2 Choice – Fantasmic!
Fantasmic! is Hollywood Studios’ nighttime show and unlike many other nighttime shows, FastPasses are available for the show, which is currently occurring only once per night and only select nights only! FastPasses to shows at Disney World allow guests to have guaranteed entry along with reserved seating areas. Fantasmic! consumes an entire amphitheater and lagoon and is an entirely outdoor show (which means it could be cancelled due to inclement weather). Fantasmic! will take you through Mickey’s dreams, and nightmares, including Disney songs, stunning sets, and extravagant special effects. Keep in mind, if you do not use your FastPass for Fantasmic! you can still attend the show, as the theater is very large, but people have the ability to arrive as early as 90 minutes before the show so you may want to go early if you have a large group, or want a special seat.
Worst Tier 2 Choice – Voyage of the Little Mermaid
The Voyage of the Little Mermaid is a good Tier 2 choice for your Hollywood Studios FastPass if you have small children in your group or just love Ariel! Similar to many attractions at Hollywood Studios, the Voyage of the Little Mermaid is a live performance show. This show runs 17 minutes and is indoors, so it has air conditioning and runs in all weather. You will venture under the sea to experience Ariel’s adventure with songs, dancing, and special effects. This show runs much more frequently than other shows, so you will have ample opportunity to check it out during your visit to Hollywood Studios, even without a FastPass.
Worst Tier 2 Choice – Muppet*Vision 3D
Muppet*Vision 3D is one of the classic Hollywood Studios attractions that has lasted through all of the revamping and expansions. This 15 minute show, set in a classic theater, will place you, and 563 of your closest friends, in a 3D live action and film story. Staring the famous Miss Piggy and Kermit, as well as the whole Muppet crew, you will learn all about their newest invention – Muppet*Vision 3D! This show runs continuously and is friendly for all ages and heights.
Worst Tier 2 Choice – Indiana Jones Stunt Spectacular
Indiana Jones Stunt Spectacular is a 30 minute action packed show full of stunts and special effects. Guests not only get to watch the magic, but also learn a bit more about what is behind the magic. If you have any grown-ups in your group, try to convince them to volunteer to be part of the action, but be sure to be on time if you want to get selected. The Indiana Jones Stunt Spectacular is a show and due to the large amount of set up, clean up, and cast member acting involved in the show, there are limited times each day. Be sure to check your App if you want to check out the show, especially if you do not have a FastPass with a set show time!
Worst Tier 2 Choice – Disney Junior Dance Party
Disney Junior Dance Party is a 25 minute show, but really dance party, with the best Disney Junior stars in town – Doc McStuffins, Vampirina, Timon, and the big man himself, Mickey. Although this show is geared towards kids and preschoolers, all of whom will have special sitting and viewing spots right up front, the show is enjoyable for all ages. DJ Deejay will have you up on your feet dancing along while you wait for Mickey’s big arrival. This show is also a great break from the heat since the theater is air conditioned and pretty comfortable, especially if you can grab a seat along the wall.
Worst Tier 2 Choice – Beauty and the Beast
Hollywood Studios FastPass Tier 2 Conclusion
I know what you are thinking, that is a lot of shows! But Hollywood Studios (formerly MGM) is a park built for the worlds of film, television, and theater and it continues to bring guests back to the Golden Age of Hollywood, so the shows are just the right fit. Since the shows are a bit easier to catch and coordinate, absent having a very large group, I recommend using your Tier 2 picks on the rides and checking out the shows via standby throughout the day!
Best Same Day Hollywood Studios FastPasses:
Disney’s Hollywood Studios FastPass+ Kiosks
Although the FastPass+ system is slowly transitioning to be almost completely web based, Disney World has left a few “old school” FastPass kiosks in the parks. The FastPass+ kiosks at Hollywood Studios are located at the following locations:
- Hollywood Boulevard: At the corner of Hollywood and Sunset
- Sunset Boulevard: At the split between Tower of Terror and Rock n Roller Coaster
- Pixar Place: Just to the right of the Toy Story Mania entrance
Best Use of Hollywood Studios FastPass+ Times
Now that you are a master of the Hollywood Studios FastPass+ system, be sure to maximize your experiences by planning out the times to use them. These are the times I recommend, but of course, take whatever you can get and pick each Tier based on your preferences!
Here is an example schedule, but do not forget the Tap and Grab technique!
Recommended FastPass+ Times
Star Wars: Millennium Falcon/Slinky Dog Dash/Runaway Railway – 9 am
Tower of Terror/Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster – 11 am
Alien Swirling Saucers or Your Favorite Show Option – After 12:00 pm
It’s official! You are now ready to enter the world created by Walt Disney and dedicated to Hollywood! There is not much at Disney World that costs you nothing, but the FastPass+ is just that. Whether you are walking around Echo Lake, down Grand Avenue, through Hollywood or Toy Story Land, or into Galaxy’s Edge, FastPass+ will help reduce the stress and allow you to enjoy every attraction, ride, and show Hollywood Studios has to offer!
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