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Old 08-27-2013, 10:28 PM   #1
brymolmom
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My experience with FP within assigned hour

Hi all.

Sitting here on my last night at WDW. I had quite a big break (for us) between trips this time around so this was our FIRST trip with the FP time enforcement. I thought I'd share my experience for those, like me, who weren't sure how significantly this would impact our touring and trip.

I'll start with a summary- YES, it did impact it and definitely not in a positive manner. But it wasn't quite the pain in my side I anticipated.

Honestly it just made my trip more stressful...I was SO CONCERNED with the exact time at all times (if you're like me and don't like to wear your phone right on you on rides - you might want to wear a watch - I CONSTANTLY had to be checking the time on this trip and calculating in my head - do we have time for a bathroom break AND walking over and doing Star Tours and gettign back before 1:20?). It was difficult to figure out what you CAN do in between rides. For example, you just get off TOT and your FP for RNR start time is in 20 minutes...We decided to walk over and do standby at Great Movie Ride. Great movie ride wait time is 35 minutes...By the time we got over there and on the ride...Assuming the estimate is either exactly right or too high...It meant hustling over (and checking my watch constantly to see if we would make it still) to make sure we got there in time for the FP's. We wanted to wait for the next show to do the Cowboy theme but would have been VERY close to missing our window so had to skip that. We ended up running across the park at least 3 times. I knew we'd end up criss-crossing more...and we did - I just didn't expect it to actually be tough to make it back in time as much as it was.

Ended up having to leave Nemo the Musical early....Was cutting it close with the end time of the show - then they had a few technical difficulties that delayed the show at the beginning by a few minutes...Between that and trying to get through the bows and getting through the crowd - we wouldn't have made it, so had to leave early to get to the Dinosaur FP's in time. We only had 2 Nemo shows to choose from that day because we had to leave the park for a lunch ressie.

Speaking of lunch - that was the other tough part. Since we get a lot of FP's in the morning...between trying to go get the next one and needing to use them within the time - Some days I found it tough to squeeze in lunch.

With the extra criss-crossing the park and needing to get somewhere to get the next FP's - I would say we were able to get almost as many FP's per day as our 'usual' - but it maybe went down by 1 fewer. But this is moot with FP+ coming around the corner anyway. I guess on the bright side when we're only getting 3 - 4 FP's per day there will be PLENTY of time to eat lunch and wait in long standby lines before the next FP window.

Definitely will take some getting used to.
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Old 08-28-2013, 07:22 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by brymolmom View Post
But this is moot with FP+ coming around the corner anyway. I guess on the bright side when we're only getting 3 - 4 FP's per day there will be PLENTY of time to eat lunch and wait in long standby lines before the next FP window.
The eating is great, but don't forget to go shopping while you're between FP+ windows...
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Old 08-28-2013, 07:41 PM   #3
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The eating is great, but don't forget to go shopping while you're between FP+ windows...
You totally did it wrong...you are supposed to SHOP when you are waiting for your return time, not do more attractions.
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Old 08-29-2013, 09:54 AM   #4
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Shoot for using your fastpass near the beginning of the time window.

Quote:
... you arere supposed to shop ...
What you are describing (and countless others have run into without knowing the term) is time fragmentation which might well be one of the intended consequences of the fastpass rules. If you think you would be cutting things close then you would report to the ride whose fastpass is maturing sooner and mill around the area, and Mickey will be even happier when you buy a chocolate covered vanilla ice cream bar in his likeness and referred to by his name, or buy a Dole Whip.

And I dare say that those who partake of advance ride reservations under Fastpass Plus will run into time fragmentation more frequently.
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Old 08-29-2013, 09:59 AM   #5
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Shoot for using your fastpass near the beginning of the time window.

What you are describing (and countless others have run into without knowing the term) is time fragmentation which might well be one of the intended consequences of the fastpass rules. If you think you would be cutting things close then you would report to the ride whose fastpass is maturing sooner and mill around the area, and Mickey will be even happier when you buy a chocolate covered vanilla ice cream bar in his likeness and referred to by his name, or buy a Dole Whip.

Quote:
... found it hard to squeeze in lunch ...
How about a turkey leg (drumstick)? Heck, you could hide it in a plastic bag and nibble on it while waiting in line.
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Old 08-29-2013, 10:04 AM   #6
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As I spent almost 3 hours trying to pick FP+ options last night and plan our days out, what you are describing is exactly what I was worried about and what was totally stressing me out. As long as regular FP is still an option to use with the system, I'm okay with it. If they yank that, I think FP+ is going to be miserable. I'm pretty sure now that our trips are going to become few and far between if that happens, or if once they roll it completely out it becomes hard to get regular FPs in the park or if getting the FP+ is like trying to scramble for ADRs. I discovered that I absolutely HATE having to plan out a whole day in advance. I like being able to get a top headliner set that I usually have to make a FP run for the minute we get in the park though (like TSM or Soarin)
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Old 08-31-2013, 12:56 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by seashoreCM View Post
Shoot for using your fastpass near the beginning of the time window.

What you are describing (and countless others have run into without knowing the term) is time fragmentation which might well be one of the intended consequences of the fastpass rules. If you think you would be cutting things close then you would report to the ride whose fastpass is maturing sooner and mill around the area, and Mickey will be even happier when you buy a chocolate covered vanilla ice cream bar in his likeness and referred to by his name, or buy a Dole Whip.


How about a turkey leg (drumstick)? Heck, you could hide it in a plastic bag and nibble on it while waiting in line.
I did TRY to shoot for the beginning of the window after it happened the first time. But I found what many of the posters here are saying to be true - it was nearly impossible to shoot for the start time of the FP window without standing around doing NOTHING for 20 - 30 minutes at a time just hanging 'in the area' of our FP attraction. Don't get me wrong, we do some shopping and buy PLENTY on our trips - but I have no intention or desire to spend hours MORE time in their shops (figure 6 FP's per day times 30 minutes 'waiting' time per FP = 3 hours in more shops), not to mention - with an additional 3 hours spent just hanging around that probably equates to 3 - 5 fewer rides/attractions that we will experience on that day which for me = a much less successful trip. So it wasn't really possible to shoot for the start time...Which then leads to me watching the clock and sprinting across the park to make it back before the end time - which made a more stressful trip.
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Old 08-31-2013, 03:37 PM   #8
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I can only remember one time on our last trip where we had to mill around for about 10-15 minutes waiting for our Fast Pass time. And it worked out to our benefit. We were waiting on some benches near TSM when the Star Wars parade got over. All the costumed characters had to pass us to get to the back. It was like having our own parade.

We never really crisscrossed or stressed out about time. You have an hour to return. It was more than enough time for us.
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Old 08-31-2013, 03:42 PM   #9
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I went Easter week and we didn't have much trouble either. We just did other attractions in the area with little to no wait and them headed to our fast pass ride.
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Old 08-31-2013, 05:45 PM   #10
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See... I spent my last trips not knowing I could use my FP after the time (at that time). So I was always doing it the current way and getting back within the hour. Never felt stressed or rushed. Never stood around for any amount of time waiting for my FP time (well, expect when we were waiting 5 minutes for our Safari time because we wanted to ride and then leave the park and were otherwise done).
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Old 08-31-2013, 07:11 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brymolmom View Post
I did TRY to shoot for the beginning of the window after it happened the first time. But I found what many of the posters here are saying to be true - it was nearly impossible to shoot for the start time of the FP window without standing around doing NOTHING for 20 - 30 minutes at a time just hanging 'in the area' of our FP attraction. Don't get me wrong, we do some shopping and buy PLENTY on our trips - but I have no intention or desire to spend hours MORE time in their shops (figure 6 FP's per day times 30 minutes 'waiting' time per FP = 3 hours in more shops), not to mention - with an additional 3 hours spent just hanging around that probably equates to 3 - 5 fewer rides/attractions that we will experience on that day which for me = a much less successful trip. So it wasn't really possible to shoot for the start time...Which then leads to me watching the clock and sprinting across the park to make it back before the end time - which made a more stressful trip.
Well, no...Aiming for the beginning of you time window means that you just aim for it you don't have to be exactly on it. If you have a 3:00 beginning on your FP window and it's 20 minutes before 3:00 that means that you have 1 hour and 20 minutes to get there. It doesn't mean that you stand around and wait for the magic number of 3 oclock to arrive. If you aim for the end, say 4:00 and you don't pay much attention until 3:40 then you have to go right away because you don't have any leeway to do something else and if you plan it wrong you have no room to make up for bathroom breaks, late running lunches or unforeseen delays. Just tell yourself that your time is at the beginning, if you can make it without hassle, do it. If you can't you still have an hour to get there. Sure, it's not as easy as the old whenever you get there, but it isn't all that difficult to do and having a watch is probably a good idea anyway. You have no idea how many years I've been relying on the little mechanical marvel to get me places on time. I don't even have to push buttons to wake it up. I lift of my arm and glance at it and like magic...there's the information I required.

I never do any shopping, I go to attractions between FP's and never stand there for even a minute to use my FP. I just do stuff until I have to be there or it is convenient to be there. If that's in the beginning, so be it, if the middle..same, if the end...that works too. The only unacceptable times as far as I am concerned are before the window opens and after it closes. An hour really is a long time. You can do a lot in that hour.
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Old 08-31-2013, 09:01 PM   #12
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We just returned from a 10 day trip with just regular FP, no FP+. This is exactly the thing that I have a problem with the new enforcement windows. Disney is asking you to plan your days very carefully in order to make those FP times, however their current method for calculating wait times is very inaccurate. Add FP+ to the mix and you have the makings of a very stressful vacation.

It seems to me that with all the new technology they should be able to come up with a way to estimate the wait times more accurately. Heck, we could look at the que many times and tell that the posted times were way off.
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Old 08-31-2013, 09:16 PM   #13
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Mickey will be even happier when you buy a chocolate covered vanilla ice cream bar in his likeness and referred to by his name
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Old 08-31-2013, 09:27 PM   #14
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Might be increased business for the Unofficial Guide touring plans. I always follow these in the parks and their timing is spot on .. do this then get this fastpass, then do this, then do this, now go back an use your fastpass. We've always been in the windows with them even when they weren't enforced.
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Old 08-31-2013, 09:32 PM   #15
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Might be increased business for the Unofficial Guide touring plans. I always follow these in the parks and their timing is spot on .. do this then get this fastpass, then do this, then do this, now go back an use your fastpass. We've always been in the windows with them even when they weren't enforced.
But, I see it as also maybe cutting down on these. Fastpass as we know it is most likely going away, so booking fastpass+ won't be as easy as following a guide. Who knows how availability will be and what options they will have when it goes live. Just my two cents.

We try them out in two weeks. Kinda nervous, but luckily it's during low crowd times...so we technically don't NEED them to ride our favorites.
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