Opinion: Running at Rope Drop


Aug 23, 2019
How do you feel about people running at RD in DW parks?
How do CM's react to it?
I don't mean a brisk walk... I mean a full on sprint. At DL, my kids and I start off with a strong pace down main street, and when there are less CM's, we make a mad dash to Space Mountain. I'm curious what people do for FoP and (eventually) RotR.


Jul 23, 2019
I usually do a brisk walk but I didn't really have an opinion on it until our last Disney trip in Sept 2019, during the RD for FOP. I was pushed from behind by someone running and fell. I was fine but pretty annoyed. If you're going to run at least have some common courtesy and don't push people. The person didn't even stop. No CM's told people to stop running during that but not sure if that is common or not. I thought it was "frowned" upon, but not sure if there is a written rule on running or not.
  • Craig Larson

    Jan 15, 2018
    Personally, I think it's ignorant and self centered. If you wanted to be in the front of the pack, get up and to the park earlier like everyone else in front of you.

    I do like that for the most part it is orderly since the have a cm lead you to the popular rides. But do wish they did more to keep people from running and trying to go around the pack by finding small openings to go around.

  • Day-Day

    DIS Veteran
    Mar 9, 2009
    Some people starting farther back will run until they catch up with the CMs or get to the beginning of a line entering the attraction and are finally forced to stop.


    DIS Veteran
    Oct 4, 2016
    It's rude and dangerous. If you want to be at the rope, get there early. And the CM's generally discourage it. Also rope drop at WDW isn't the same as DL. They will let people into the park's hub and then after a bit, walk people to the popular rides. They don't just start letting people in the gate to go for it.
  • Mzpalmtree

    DIS Veteran
    Dec 27, 2018
    I detest it and think it is beyond rude. We are rope droppers and I understand it will happen and does happen every time but it still gets under my skin. I would never do it and I would not allow my children to either. We do get there super early and try to be at the front of the pack because we know we’ll be pushed and shoved by these runners and inevitably fall further behind. I also detest when family members of the runners push and shove through the crowd to “catch up” with them once the crowd comes to a stand still. I agree with other posters that it’s dangerous and I hate when I see parents modeling this behavior for their children.


    It's a WDW realty that not every moment is magical
    Mar 18, 2008
    I don't think it saves more than 1 minute over another party that didn't run. With the major rides having multiple sides operating (think FOP or Soarin') and that they will have to wait for their side to load before the ride starts. I would say 2 parties 100 people apart would exit within a very short time apart. But, if it makes them feel better, I really don't care. I know it can be more than exciting to arrive & finally be in a park & ready to ride something!!


    DIS Veteran
    Apr 2, 2009
    @WonkaKid you might have some thoughts on this :)
    Plenty! ;-) But where to begin?

    Well, yes: running is against Disney rules. When CMs see it, they'll asks guests firmly not to run. But that's about all they'll do. Once -- once -- about six months ago I saw a security CM step out if front of a guest who was full-on sprinting at the rope drop for PP at DL. The guest simply ran around him and into the line for PP (he was first). This was the only time I've seen running have any consequences. The security dude pulled him out of line and demanded his AP. He scanned it and, I believe, the guest's name was entered into Disney's "Treasured Guests" database. Or at least I hope it was. He was not asked to leave the park but he had to go to the end of the line if he wanted to ride PP. That is, he was not allowed to profit from running. He lost his first-place spot.

    There's tons more to say but I'll only make a few points:

    • When guests run at rope drop, it often encourages other guests to run and soon there's a New York Marathon headed into Fantasyland at 8:00:07 on a Sunday morning. Regularly I'm with friends and we're the first into the park and at the front of the rope. I've always been a fast walker and as I/we approach PP and we hear another guest as he/she gallops up behind us, we'll either move to block said guest or, sometimes -- and I'm not proud of this -- we'll run ourselves to stop them from stealing our first-place spot in the last few seconds. We don't like doing it, but there are rarely consequences for runners so if we don't take steps (pun intended) to protect our spot, we'll often lose it to cheaters (i.e., runners). Guests who follow the no-running rule, in effect, are penalized.

    • There's often a lone child who bolts from the rope to Peter Pan. People often cut them slack because, well, they're kids and they're excited and enthusiastic. In fact, some people think it's just darling. But when they arrive in first place at Peter Pan, their family of 16 then joins them. It's like they all ran. Suddenly it's decidedly less darling.

    • Yes: running at the park isn't cool. In fact, just this morning I spoke with two CMs at the rope. I asked them how often they see guests fall at rope drop. They both said that it's pretty common. The majority of those who fall are runners. There's a good reason for the rule. I wish everyone obeyed it. In fact, I'd say that it's unusual when no one runs at rope drop. We go nearly every Sunday and we only see it about once a month.

    • Last observation: while it seems that Disney does nothing to combat running, my guess is that they've been in this business for more than sixty years and in that time, surely they've experimented with all manner of strategies to address the scourge of runners. It's my guess that, after all of this time, they've learned that there is no effective solution to the problem and asking guests not to run appears to be ineffective, it's possibly the most effective thing they've found that isn't also accompanied by negative outcomes -- such as parents screaming that the rule has been applied unfairly to their child, children screaming that the rule has been applied unfairly to their parents and so forth. In the long run, while it may not really work, it also does little harm. They don't have any good choices and they have to make one. This appears to be it.


    DIS Veteran
    May 2, 2018
    I think it's dangerous, plain and simple. You can accidentally hurt someone else, or you can fall or twist something yourself. And while a fall may not be a big deal to one person, it can be more likely to cause a serious injury to someone else. Plus, in a crowd situation, a fall always brings with it a bit more of a risk because you are surrounded by people, strollers, and ECVs that could hit you/run into you/fall over you.

    I figure no one wants to start off their day at the park by falling or getting hurt, so it's just probably better for everyone if all guests refrain from actually running.


    Wait for it.
    Dec 9, 2014
    People running is why I don't RD big headliners or Epcot. We almost got bowled over by people running to Frozen when we had been the very first people at the IG. Very rude. I swore I would never do it again.


    DIS Veteran
    Jul 16, 2017
    I wouldn't do it because I find it pointless, but it definitely doesn't bother me when I see others doing it. If you want to, go for it.


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