FoP and AK EMH Bus or Drive?

Discussion in 'Theme Parks Attractions and Strategies' started by RllngRckBrw, May 17, 2018.

  1. RllngRckBrw

    RllngRckBrw DIS Veteran

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    ...because the boards don’t have enough FoP threads, I figured I’d start one more.

    We are going June 22 and part of the AM EMH (8:00 am). We are staying at Pop. My question is, what time to the busses start to run? Would it be more beneficial to beat the crowds by driving or is it a non factor? I prefer to take the bus but would drive if it came to some kind of advantage with getting early enough for FoP. I was planning to be to the park at 7:00 (which we figure is a bus line up of 6:30-6:40) as that seems to be the ideal time to get on FoP in the am.
     
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  2. ShadeDK

    ShadeDK Permanently Staying in Room 237

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    It’s a nonfactor. I did this twice recently from Pop and was on FoP both times within the first 2-3 groups and off the ride shortly after 8am. Caught the first bus out of Pop (6:55 to 7:00), at AK gates by 7:20 and in line. The crowd will seem much worse than it is - once in the park and at FoP, the ride sucks up the early crowd very quickly.

    You could drive to ensure that you’re first in line at the first security hold at the ticket booths - but you’re only waiting longer without buying yourself any particular advantage. Additionally, because of the set up most of the first people there aren’t necessarily the first ones onto the ride. There are too many places for people to bump ahead - whether it’s the release from the ticket booths to the turnstiles - or getting through the turnstiles - or having your MB checked at the path into AK to make sure you’re a resort guest - or the security hold at the bridge - or the walk to the ride - or the choke points once entering Pandora - etc. Both times I saw people who’d been at the front at the gates end up behind 50 other people or more by the time we all got to the ride. Both times I considered taking an Uber to AK - both times I was glad I didn’t waste the money.
     
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  4. gharter

    gharter DIS Veteran

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    Personally, when we go to AK, if we have a rental car, we drive. It seems to take much longer by bus. As we are staying on site, we don't pay anything more to park and we can get there faster than the bus. YMMV.
     
  5. Laura's Dad

    Laura's Dad DIS Veteran

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    We are wondering the same thing. We are going next Saturday with a 7 am opening for EMH. We will have our car there. We are staying at Coronado Springs and are wondering what time the first bus will be buy to pick us up. We, too, usually drive to the AK. Any help would be appreciated.
     
  6. Robo

    Robo 1971 Castle in the Hub: Your lights are on!

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    I never drive at WDW anymore...
    however, since you said, "We, too, usually drive to the AK"
    then, you should drive to AK.

    AKA, why change now?
     
  7. Laura's Dad

    Laura's Dad DIS Veteran

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    Because for this time we are going back to our hotel before returning for ROL with the dining package and the AK at night. I figured it would be easier to just shuttle on the bus.
     
  8. Robo

    Robo 1971 Castle in the Hub: Your lights are on!

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    Sounds fine to me.
    As I said, I never drive at WDW.
    (USED to... not any more.)

    But, some guests prefer to drive.
     
  9. Beer Me

    Beer Me DIS Veteran

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    We stayed at BC last summer and planned to bus to AK for EMH to rope drop fop. We did have a car though.
    I don't remember the exact times but we got to the bus stop early and the posted wait time for an AK bus kept increasing. We got antsy and ended up driving ourselves. It worked out but I'm willing to bet the bus would have been ok too if we had been a little more patient. It can be comforting though to put destiny more in your own hands
     
  10. SuzGM84

    SuzGM84 Mouseketeer

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    We're doing AK that same day! We have a FP for FOP for 955, so i'm still debating if I want to RD for Navi River.
     
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  11. isabellea

    isabellea Combining beach and Disney!

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    What we like to do is drive to the park early in the morning so we get a parking spot very close to the entrance. Then we take the bus for our resort break. That way, when it’s time to leave when the park closes, our walk to the car is short and no waiting with sleepy kids at the bus stop.
     
    Last edited: May 19, 2018
  12. SaintsManiac

    SaintsManiac DIS Veteran

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    Jumped on a bus from POP at 6:40am for 7am EMH at AK. Got there in 10 minutes. Walked on NRJ. You'll definitely want to get there much earlier for FoP.
     
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  13. sking5844

    sking5844 Earning My Ears

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    How long is the bus ride from Contemporary over to AK early in the morning normally? Someone told me it can take an hour sometimes and that seemed crazy to me.
     
  14. shocker

    shocker DIS Veteran

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    Can you help with this bumping situation? I posted this ? in another thread & got no response. I've heard lots of talk of parties getting separated during the onslaught. We are a party of 4, the youngest is 15. I'm trying to prepare our group that WE WILL get separated at RD. I'm trying to pick a place we could regroup before proceeding. I'm thinking about a preshow/video area. Wondering if its after the groups are counted off to ride (like soarin') or just a room full of people with no particular order (like RNR or Dinosaur). I thought the first one to arrive could step aside & let others pass until #4 arrives, then go together. Will this work or do you have another suggested area? Really should be farther in where there is less potential for chaos.
     
  15. Robo

    Robo 1971 Castle in the Hub: Your lights are on!

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    14 min.
    But, that bus might stop at Poly and/or GF before leaving the MK resorts area, so that can add another 7-14 min. to the trip.
     
  16. jwolfpack

    jwolfpack Mouseketeer

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    If we have a PPO breakfast or are trying to get to an early EMH and be front of the rope drop crowd, we drive. I'd rather be in control of my own destiny. It's so simple early in the mornings and you can get a parking spot very close to the entrance. When we've bussed for things like this, we've always made it, however not without me getting stressed.
     
  17. DisDreaming4116

    DisDreaming4116 Mouseketeer

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    I feel better about taking Uber to AK for FOP RD and then taking the bus back to the resort whenever we are ready to head back for the night. I like the bus system but get worried about there not being a bus available early enough for RD.
     
  18. ShadeDK

    ShadeDK Permanently Staying in Room 237

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    While RD for FoP is not the most pleasant experience, it's also not as bad as some of the reports make it sound. I've done it numerous times in the past year - I feel it's gotten better (the months after it opened seemed much worse) and having EMH everyday at AK now through next month also helps thin the crowds (at least from what I've seen). Most parties can and do stay together during the walk over to Pandora - the ones that get separated are probably because some of the group is trying to race ahead. If you try to stay back to stay together (and accept that there will some people who just MUST get ahead of you no matter what) you shouldn't have too many problems. It's not a sea of people the entire way where part of your group will get carried away.

    One of the reasons it's easy to stay together is that the pathways after entering AK are pretty wide most of the walk to the ride and you can keep everyone around you. The problem is that the walkways steadily get narrower as you head towards and enter Pandora. That creates bottlenecks and funnels - and is the area where people crowd in and most likely where you could get separated (particularly on the trails right before FoP and as the CMs direct you to file down into a line 2 people wide). Unfortunately, that also makes it difficult to find a regrouping spot before you get on the ride if you do get separated - it's cramped once you're in Pandora. If you do get separated, my recommendation would be to enter the line separately, and then meet up in the outside part of the queue as the walkway goes across the bridge that overlooks the waterfall (lots of people end up stopping there anyway for pictures and you can wave people around until the rest of your party shows up).

    The preshow areas with Dr. Stephen's videos are part of the ride and after your group of 16 has been counted off for the ride (not like Dinosaur). So you'll have to meet up before then. There also aren't many areas after the outside part of the queue to meet up - the cave gets cramped and the CMs will be taking your "tickets" (that they hand out at the ride entrance for your party - if you get separated, each separate group should take one). You might be able to wait up after entering the concrete hallway, but it's a short walk from there to the FP/Standby merge where you'll be directed to a specific line (and you could end up being directed to different lines, or even different theaters, if you haven't met up by then).
     
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  19. ghtx

    ghtx DIS Veteran

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    There used to be a thing with AK where the parking lot didn't open as early as the lots at the other parks, so it made it a problem to drive there if you wanted to arrive earlier than RD. But I don't think that's been true for a while.
     
  20. RJstanis

    RJstanis Negative, I am a meat popsicle

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    This is the way to do it! We made the mistake of taking the car on the break before and that was a grim mistake. We (would) do it this way for now on, as it makes perfect sense, as long as you don't need your car for anything during the break.
     
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