Rookies have no fear! We here at DisneyLists have your back! While planning a vacation to Walt Disney World may seem like a daunting task, trust that your planning and preparation will make for one spectacular trip. Whether you’ve never been to Disney’s Hollywood Studios or you haven’t been since all the newer attractions and experiences, this is the article for you! Here are nine rookie mistakes at Disney’s Hollywood Studios and how to avoid them.
1 – Not Downloading the My Disney Experience App
Ok, rookies, first things first! As you begin to plan your visit to Disney’s Hollywood Studios, you’ll NEED to download the My Disney Experience App. It’s a FREE Disney app that will be your guide in all Disney parks, including Hollywood Studios. This app is crucial to making dining reservations, FastPass selections, mobile ordering food, joining a boarding group, and checking on attraction wait times. It also serves as your virtual map! Download this now if you haven’t already. Then, let’s keep going!
2 – Missing the 60-Day Window for Dining Reservations
Disney allows guests to book dining reservations for table-service restaurants 60-days in advance. You may be thinking, 60 days? That seems like a lifetime before the trip! BUT – it’s not. Many Disney restaurants fill up at the 60-day mark, so it’s definitely a day you want to make a note of. Hollywood Studios has some of the very best themed table-service restaurants, and many of them fill to capacity quickly. Book these restaurants via your My Disney Experience App 60-days in advance right when the 6:00 am booking window opens.
3 – Sleeping In & Missing A Boarding Group in the Virtual Queue
Editor’s Note: Disney recently announced that the Virtual Queue for Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance will be “paused” beginning September 23, 2021. We do expect that the Virtual Queue will return.
Hollywood Studios has one oddball attraction you’ll want to be aware of! This is Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance in Galaxy’s Edge. It’s an absolutely incredible attraction…and we mean INCREDIBLE! With that being said, there is no way to wait in line to ride this attraction. It has a virtual queue. This means if you plan to arrive and walk straight to the attraction, you won’t be able to get on. There are two chances to join the virtual queue: at 7:00 am and 1:00 pm. At 7:00 am you can be anywhere, you no longer need to be in the park to secure a boarding group. Use your My Disney Experience App to join a boarding group for Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance. You’ll be assigned a boarding group number, and your app will tell you when your boarding time is coming. It’s essential you are ready to join a boarding group the moment you can. The groups fill up in seconds. Note that for the 1:00 pm opening time you need to be in the park to join. It may be stressful, but it’s worth the hassle.
4 – Not Exploring the Park Layout in Advance
By now, you likely understand the importance of having the My Disney Experience App! As mentioned above, this app can serve as your virtual map through Hollywood Studios. We do, however, see many rookies wait until they are IN the park to find things. Unfortunately, this is a time-waster. Study the park layout before your trip. Using the app, you’ll be able to learn boulevard and land names to help with finding your way around the park. Study different landmark attractions that will set you on the right path. No need to waste time in the park trying to figure out where you’re going!
5 – Skipping the Shows
It’s Hollywood, after all! You won’t want to miss the incredible entertainment and shows available in the park. A couple of our favorites include Fantasmic! (a nighttime spectacular), Beauty and the Beast – Live on Stage, and For the First Time in Forever: A Frozen Sing-Along Celebration. You can expect impressive entertainers, costumes, stage work, and more. You won’t want to skip these popular shows.
6 – Avoiding the Classics
While much of the excitement at Disney’s Hollywood Studios revolves around Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, Toy Story Land, and other thrilling attractions, you won’t want to pass on some of the Hollywood Studios’ “classics.” We especially recommend taking a stroll through Walt Disney Presents. Visit the Muppets at Muppet Vision 3D. And take in all the action with Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular!
7 – Not Stopping for Snacks
Slow your roll! We get that there is a LOT to squeeze in at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. BUT – we also recommend you slow your stroll whenever possible. There are many outstanding snacks at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, including blue or green milk, ice cream sandwiches, specialty cupcakes, funnel cakes, lunch box tarts, and so much more. Slow down and enjoy a little Hollywood Studios’ goodness!
8 – Missing the Nighttime Excitement
Editor’s Note: At this time, both Fantasmic! and Star Wars: A Galactic Spectacular are temporarily suspended.
It’s likely been a long day. You arrived well before the park opening. You’ve scurried through crowds. And you’ve braved the Florida heat. Before you call it a night, be sure to hang around and experience all the nighttime excitement Hollywood Studios has to offer! Two nighttime spectaculars include Fantasmic! and Star Wars: A Galactic Spectacular. On top of those experiences, you’ll want to check out Toy Story Land and Galaxy’s Edge at night! While they are stunning during the day, at night, these spaces transform and absolutely glow. Arrive early and stay late! Trust us; it’s worth it.
9 – Skipping out on the Disney Skyliner
The Disney Skyliner is the newest form of Disney transportation and is like an attraction all in itself! Hollywood Studios guests have a chance to experience the Skyliner as it is located just outside of the park. If staying at Disney’s Riviera Resort, Art of Animation, Pop Century, or Caribbean Beach Resort, you can take the Skyliner to and from your resort to Hollywood Studios. You can also park hop to EPCOT from Hollywood Studios on the Skyliner. If you don’t need to get to any of these destinations, you are still welcome to ride on the Skyliner for free to simply check out the aerial views it has to offer. The Skyliner is a great way to begin or end your Hollywood Studios day.
Alright, rookies! You’re ready to be a Disney pro. Have a fantastic time at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.
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