Walt Disney World uses a Virtual Queue Boarding Pass System to control crowds as new rides open in the parks. Currently used for Guardians of the Galaxy Cosmic Rewind in EPCOT park, and for TRON Lightcylce/ Run in Magic Kingdom. Here you can find all the tips and tricks for the My Disney Experience App to help you snag a boarding group. You can do this twice a day, and don’t need a Lighting Lane when you use Virtual Queue. Here’s what you need to know to make sure you get a boarding pass and actually get to ride these Virtual Queue Rides at Disney World.
How to Ride TRON at Walt Disney World with Virtual Queue
TRON Lightcycle/ Run promises to be the best thrill rollercoaster yet! TRON uses a virtual queue, allowing guests the opportunity to experience the attraction later in the day and enjoy all that Magic Kingdom Park has to offer while they wait to enter the Grid. Guests with a valid ticket or pass and a theme park reservation( only needed through 2023) for Magic Kingdom Park on the same date will have the opportunity to request to join the virtual queue via the My Disney Experience app.
Does TRON Have a Standby Queue?
A standby queue is not be available for TRON Lightcycle/ Run.
Do You Need a Lightning Lane Pass to Ride TRON?
No. TRON is available via Virtual Queue and can be accessed WITHOUT purchasing Lightning Lane.
However, Guests may choose the option to purchase individual – or à la carte – Lightning Lane in the My Disney Experience app. On the day of their visit, Team Blue recruits with a valid admission and a park reservation for Magic Kingdom Park on the same date may visit the Disney Genie Service Tip Board in the app to choose an arrival window and make their purchase before joining the high-speed race against Team Orange. Guests may check the app on the day of their visit for pricing and availability.
TRON Locker System
New to TRON Lightcycle / Run, a double-sided and digitized locker system will be used to store bags and loose items while you race your Lightcycle. Inside the attraction queue, these complimentary lockers pair directly with your MagicBand, MagicBand+ or ticket media so you can easily lock and reopen your locker with a quick tap. Guests without a MagicBand or other ticket media (such as a card) will be provided with a card to assign their locker. All items must be placed either in a locker before you board your Lightcycle, or in a small compartment located on the attraction vehicle that can hold items such as cellphones, glasses or wallets.
How to Get into the Virtual Queue at Walt Disney World
Wondering how to get in the Virtual queue line for these rides at Walt Disney World? Here are all the tips and tricks, and answers to the big questions so you can go prepared. From how to have your family party in the Friends and Family part of the app ahead of time to how long you can expect to wait, here are all the details.
Which Rides Use Virtual Queue at Walt Disney World?
Guardians of the Galaxy Cosmic Rewind in EPCOT Park, and TRON Lightcycle/Run in Magic Kingdom, open April 4, 2023.
Do you need a Lightning Lane or Genie+ to Use Virtual Queue at Disney World?
NO! You can access the Virtual Queue line via your My Disney Experience App for FREE at select times to get your boarding pass.
What Times Can I Get a Disney Boarding Pass?
Ride Boarding Passes now drop at 7 am and 1 pm. With these separate distribution times, guests will have more opportunities to grab a pass. Access to a boarding pass is subject to availability and not guaranteed.
- Starting at 7 a.m. on the day of their Park reservation, Guests with a valid ticket or pass and a Disney Park Pass Reservation for EPCOT® will be able to check for an available boarding group and request access to the virtual queue. This can be done before you leave your Resort hotel or on your way to the Park.
- Another opportunity to enter the virtual queue will be released at 1 p.m. for anyone who wasn’t able to join a boarding group earlier in the day. Keep in mind, Guests must be inside EPCOT® to access this second virtual queue opportunity. Access to a boarding group is subject to availability and not guaranteed.
NOTE: the passes only load on the My Disney Experience at 7 am, 1 pm, and 6 pm (for Disney Deluxe Resort Guests). Refreshing the screen for a pass outside of these times is unnecessary. Simply log in to your account, choose the “Join virtual Queue” button and you’ll either get in, or you won’t. Refreshing the screen ahead of time won’t matter since the passes only drop at the exact times of 7 am, 1 pm, and 6 pm. In order to give as many Guests as possible the opportunity to save the galaxy, each Guest can enter the virtual queue no more than once per day during regular Park hours.
6 pm Virtual Boarding Pass for Deluxe Resort Guests
One of the newest changes is that Disney Resort Guests, staying only at Disney Deluxe Resorts, have the option to get an additional Virtual Queue Boarding Pass at 6 pm, when taking advantage of the Extended Evening Theme Park Hours. This means that right at 6 pm, you can join the virtual queue for the ride, and be given a boarding time for after the park closes to regular guests. On our last trip, we stayed at the Beach Resort and were able to join the virtual queue at 6 pm for a 9:30 pm ride. You do not have to be in the park, in order to join the queue, just registered as a Deluxe Disney Resort guest. So even if you don’t plan on staying out until midnight, your chances of getting in a boarding group are good!
Do you Have to Have Disney Park Pass Reservation to get a Boarding Pass?
YES. Park Pass Reservations are required through January 8, 2024. You must have a Park Pass Reservation for the park to get access to the Disney Boarding Pass Queue in the My Disney Experience App. If you have a Park Hopper Ticket only guests who have a reservation for the park that day can get access to the afternoon pass. So, if you’re going to another park- for which you have a pass first and then park hop over to the park with the ride, you will not be able to access the system. Check out the details and rules for when the Park Hopper returns to Disney World.
How Fast Does the Boarding Pass Virtual Queue Fill Up?
Pretty Fast. For TRON you can expect the queue in about one minute, which is what it was when Rise of the Resistance opened. Yes, you read that right. Within ONE minute the queue is full. This is why the strategies here are SO IMPORTANT. Because sometimes it’s just about getting your fingers to move fast enough. Other times it’s about where you’re standing in HS, or how “new” your phone is. There are lots of variables to take into account here so follow the tips for your best chance!
Does everyone in my family, and the kids, have to be in the parks to get a pass?
The 7 am Boarding Pass Group can be accessed OUTSIDE of the Parks- from your Disney Resort Room and you can get in the queue. But the 1 pm Boarding Pass requires that you be inside either EPCOT or Magic Kingdom when you make the reservation. Though there have been reports of being able to access the 1 pm pass from outside the park as well. Everyone in your party will need to physically scan in with their MagicBands and be inside the park in order for the app to access a pass at 1 pm timeslot.
Should we use multiple phones to try and get the boarding pass for our group?
No. While everyone can try to load the app to see which phone loads it fastest when you get to the “select travel party” screen, only one person in your party can do that and complete the process. And make sure that person has everyone in your travel party attached to the My Disney Experience account. From Disney: *Select one member of your party to access the virtual queue for everyone in your group. If multiple people in your party try to join the virtual queue simultaneously, that may complicate your ability to secure a boarding group.
Can we get a boarding pass later in the day?
Yes. If you miss the 7 am Boarding Pass call, you can retry at 1 pm. Truthfully, we RECOMMEND trying to get into the 7 am boarding pass first. and then if you can’t try again at the 1 pm slot. Practice makes perfect here. And if you’re unable to get into one, you have one more chance! They also assign “backup groups” for those unsuccessful in getting in within the first few minutes of the boarding groups being open.
When Will My Boarding Group Be Called?
This varies in both Walt Disney World and Disneyland and across days depending on crowds. Since Disney is still testing this whole process there’s no way to tell when you will be called- which is why it is CRITICAL to have your Disney app notifications turned on as we share in the steps above. For context, on the day we got our boarding pass, our boarding group #45 was called at 10:30 am. But in Disneyland on the same day, a friend of ours who had boarding pass #28 got called in at 6:30 pm, the ride broke and finally got to ride around 8:45 pm. So, it’s not consistent and at present, there is no way to tell when your number will be called ahead of time.
What’s the Best Thing to Do once you Get Your Boarding Pass?
Whatever you like, but stay in the park, or nearby. While we didn’t know what time boarding groups are going to be called, you can see in the app which boarding groups are “loading.” So, hopefully, this can help you plan out your day.
Can I rope-drop my favorite ride while waiting to get in a boarding group?
While you can do whatever you want, a standby line may not be available for new rides. Your first and only priority on the day you’re getting your Disney boarding pass is to get into a boarding group. This is made more difficult if you’re in crowds of people all waiting to get on a ride. It’s even harder if that ride is behind loads of trees or tucked in the corner of the park. Sure, it may seem like a good strategy to maximize your morning, but we recommend waiting until you have the boarding pass in your app before doing so.
Disney Virtual Queue Boarding Pass Tips
What if the Disney Ride is Broken or Down When My Boarding Group is Called?
Never fear, you will still be able to ride the ride once it’s back up and running. Rides are sometimes down throughout the day for maintenance, when it breaks, etc. As such, if the Disney Ride is broke down when you return for your Boarding Group, it will still be honored for the rest of the day. That said, if you don’t want to wait around or keep coming back to check, you can do the following.
- Open the My Disney Experience App
- Go to Wait Times from the top bar in the app
- Scroll to the ride you’re waiting on and see if it says “Temporarily Closed.” If so, then plan to get on with your day, and check the app periodically, until it says it’s available. The app updates in real-time, so using this strategy allows you to be anywhere in the park, or elsewhere, and still have the ability to check for the ride is running again. Once running, you can return and use your boarding pass to ride.
Prepare your Phone Ahead of Time
A day or two before you plan on trying for a Boarding Pass you have to prep your phone.
- Make sure it’s updated to the latest IOS or software
- Offload unnecessary apps that run in the background. You can always re-load them later.
- Double Check Settings on your Walt Disney World app.
- Make sure your Disney app is set to use data when available go to Settings-Cellular-Disney App-Toggle on.
- Make sure your Disney Notifications are on. Go to Settings- Notifications-Disney App-Toggle on.
- TURN OFF your wi-fi. Wi-fi will be too slow to get you a boarding pass.
- Give your phone a clean Turn Off and Turn On again after you make these changes. This forces a good reset of all the working parts that could gunk up the works.
The Phone that is the NEWEST phone in your group will have the best chance of loading the boarding pass.
Learn the My Disney Experience App
Everyone in your travel party will need a Disney Account, with tickets attached. Double-check your “Family and Friends” section of the app to make sure everyone is added, everyone has tickets… and there is no one unnecessarily attached to your account. The more people you have in the app means more scrolling when you get to the screen to choose your boarding group. This takes time and could slow down the process, losing you the pass.
Get Familiar with the Boarding Pass Process Ahead of Time
Again a day or two before you’re in the parks, it’s helpful to get familiar with how the app will work. Open the My Disney Experience App. Under the section that says ” Access Boarding Group”, click Find Out More. This will be a section in the app as you scroll. Once on this screen, you will see an option to check My Status or Join Boarding Group. Essentially when the time comes you will click the Join Boarding Group button, but if that’s grayed out clicking My Status also brings you to a boarding group button.
Be in the Park at 1 pm
If your aim is the 7 am timeslot then you can just Join the Virtual Queue from the comfort of your resort room. Remember everyone in your travel party should be in your Friends and Family list so you can select any of them riding. And if you’re aiming for the 1 pm timeslot, then they all must be scanned into the park where the ride is located.
Double-Check Park Hours
Always check Disney park hours before you go. As opening hours have been changing to accommodate the crowds. It’s best to try for the early spot and then again for the afternoon spot if you don’t get in. So just get there early. To bypass waiting in security, go without a bag. The only thing you really need is a phone. Note that some people have reported that they were able to access the boarding pass system from their Disney resort room. Try this ahead of time to see if it works for you.
Through the Gates and Where to Stand…
If you’re in the parks at 1 pm and trying to get into the virtual queue, your goal is to find somewhere with fewer trees, fewer buildings, and fewer people than anywhere else. Find an uncrowded spot and stand there.
When to Open the App
Open your My Disney Experience App and scroll to the section that says “Join Virtual Queue.” From here, you’ll see the screen that says “Confirm your Party”. Once your party is confirmed plan to refresh the page as needed until the virtual queue boarding pass shows up.
- Use your clock timer on another phone to count it down to the drop time (7 am or 1 pm)
- Click Join Boarding Group
- Select your Travel Party from your Friends and Family List
- The second the clock hits the 7 am or 1 pm timeslot access the virtual queue screen.
- Hold your breath in the hopes that you’ll get a spot!
Getting a Disney Virtual Queue Boarding Pass
If you’ve followed all the tips here, you should be successful with getting a boarding pass. Hopefully, this gives you a complete look at what it will take to get a Boarding Pass for any Virtual Queue Ride. Both Disneyland and Walt Disney World now have ride and boarding-systems in place. If you have more tips or questions on the Disney boarding passes for this ride, let us know!!! We’re hoping to make sure every Disney Vacationer knows about the system, so they’re not caught off guard.
Rochelle Mariah is a writer, designer and photographer with an MLIS in Information Science and a B.S. in Arch and Design. Determined to make Planning a DIY Disney Vacation easier she makes lots of lists and drinks lots of coffee. When not designing apparel at Polka Dot Pixie Shop, she's watching old movies and planning the holidays. She has been traveling to Disney destinations since 2010.