Highly Disputed Disney Service Deemed “Best” by Guests

Cinderella walking in front of Magic Kingdom castle
Credit: Disney

A guest recently spoke out in favor of one of Disney’s most controversial services, which fans have repeatedly slammed.

While guests certainly love their time at the Walt Disney World Resort in Central Florida and the Disneyland Resort in Southern California, not every aspect of the Disney experience is beloved by fans. In fact, in recent times, fans have noted particular irritations with paid alternatives to previously complimentary services

Yes, we’re talking about oft-disparaged Disney Genie+ service (including Lightning Lane and Individual Lightning Lane).

cinderella castle magic kingdom

Cinderella Castle, Magic Kingdom Park, Walt Disney World Resort / Credit: Greg Park, Unsplash

Genie+, Lightning Lane, and Individual Lightning Lane 

The Disney Genie service was introduced in late 2021 after the pandemic as a paid replacement for the previously free FastPass system. Disney Genie+ is a digital assistant that allows guests to skip lines to their favorite rides…for a price. The Genie service is comprised of two products: Lightning Lane and Individual Lightning Lane, each featuring different rides.

Slinky Dog Dash Rollercoaster

Slinky Dog Dash / Credit: Disney

Lightning Lane is the service that allows guests to skip the long standby wait lines. With rides for which guests can’t avail of a Lightning Lane reservation, they can choose to get an Individual Lightning Lane instead (think of a ride like Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind).

Common Lightning Lane attractions are the usual suspects: Jungle Cruise, Space Mountain, Haunted Mansion, the beloved Peter Pan attraction, Peter Pan’s Flight, Meet Cinderella and a Visiting Princess at Princess Fairytale Hall, and Meet Princess Tiana and a Visiting Princess at Princess Fairytale Hall are some examples in the Magic Kingdom

remy's ratatouille adventure

Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure / Credit: Becky Burkett

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On the other hand, Seven Dwarfs Mine Train and TRON Lightcycle / Run are not offered as part of Disney Genie+ and are instead each included as an individual lightning lane selection.

Few Disney services are as universally frowned upon by guests as Genie+ and Lightning Lane. Fans have expressed time and again that the service does not live up to expectations, especially considering it is paid. 

However, one fan commented recently that they didn’t understand the “hate” for the service, noting how using it significantly reduced their wait time at the Disney Resort.

Genie+ and Anger from Pixar Inside Out

Disney Genie+ / Credit: Disney and Canva

Disney guest MichaelFromTheAttic wrote on Reddit, “Last time I went to Magic Kingdom, I was able to grab around 10 Lighting Lanes for $29. And trust me, I’m not the kind of guy who likes to rush and run around the park, the only thing I did was wake up at 7, grabbed Jungle Cruise for around 11 and then for all the other LLs I was able to peacefully book them throughout the day. And we’re talking Pirates, [Big Thunder Mountain Railroad], Haunted Mansion, Space Mountain, Pooh, things like that.”

The fan continued, ” I got to the park at around 10:30 and left at night, shortly after the fireworks. Didn’t even close the park. Thanks to Genie, I was able to never wait in line, grab drinks, chill around the park, etc,” concluding with the question, “What’s up with the hate?”

The Tree of Life at Disney's Animal Kingdom

The Tree of Life at Disney’s Animal Kingdom theme park / Credit: Disney Parks

While many guests saw the OP’s perspective, some also took the time to explain why the service vexed so many guests: “It sucks for local passholders who don’t want to frequently pay $30 just to ride more than a single ride after work but I understand we’re lucky to enter as we please. I imagine it’s great for less frequent guests.”

guardians of the galaxy: cosmic rewind

Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind /Credit: Disney

Another opined, “…With Fast Pass I could plan my entire vacation and then for most of the day just keep an eye on the time at least until later in the day when I’d try to use additional passes after my ones were used up. Now with Genie+ I have to spend considerably more time ‘head down’ in my phone actively planning my day as it goes instead of ‘head up’ enjoying everything around me. I’m on vacation. I want to enjoy my surroundings.”

What do you think of Disney’s Genie+ service? Do you have a different perspective than the guest who began the discussion? Let Disney Dining know in the comments!

About Priyanka Kumar

Priyanka is a writer, artist, avid reader, and travel enthusiast based in Chicago. In her free time, she is probably walking by the lake, catching up on the latest releases on TV, or spending inordinate amounts of time rewatching Moana, Encanto, and her Disney Channel life-long favorites Zack and Cody wreak havoc on the Tipton.

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