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View Full Version : Fastpass+ Testing at Epcot



Wendy
22-12-2012, 07:25 PM
A FASTPASS+ test for IllumiNations at Epcot, is being carried out this month. Preferred viewing locations will be available in World Showcase Plaza and near the Germany Pavilion.

The FASTPASS+ system is designed to allow guests to plan out their day, choosing the time they wish to experience attractions, shows, parades and fireworks.

I really don't like the idea of the Fastpass+ it seems to be aimed at onsite guests everytime and day visitors are being treated as if they aren't as important :(

Britchick
22-12-2012, 07:37 PM
And who wants to be in Germany? Much better to be nearer the exit. Germany has my favourite snack though lol

Vikki
22-12-2012, 08:58 PM
I really don't understand fast pass plus. Is it true you can only get them at deluxe resorts? Sometimes I confuse myself with rumor and fact! I listen to too many podcasts and read too many forums ;)

Wendy
22-12-2012, 09:34 PM
At the moment it is given to random guests in all resorts, Value, Moderate and Deluxe. From what I've been reading, Disney are hoping to bring it in within the next 6 months.

No-one really knows for sure who will eventually be able to get Fastpass+ but at the moment it is definitely aimed at onsite guests only :nono:

keith
22-12-2012, 11:16 PM
I really don't understand fast pass plus. Is it true you can only get them at deluxe resorts? Sometimes I confuse myself with rumor and fact! I listen to too many podcasts and read too many forums ;)

You should stick to the good ones ;-)

I spoke to some people at the contemporary about this in some detail. It's all tied into the RFID "key to the world" cards which every onsite resort will eventually be going to. The contemporary/beach club etc already have them.

The idea is that everything will go paperless and your room key truly will do everything. Access to parks, FP+ preplanned and so on. The current fastpass system is, so I was told, scheduled to be removed once FP+ gets going properly. So you'll preplan your fastpasses and that's it, no more running around the park getting them.

I asked if it was deluxe only and they laughed and said no, it'll be replacing fastpass for all onsite guests.

I was shown how the current room keys could wirelessly "touch to pay" up to $50 already at shops, any more than $50 needed a PIN number which was assigned by the guest at checkin. It worked well for us MOSTLY but some CMs on checkouts just didn't know how to use it properly.

Likewise going into parks, it was just a swipe of the card against the mickey as we walked through.

I asked about annual passes and was told they couldnt currently put them on the room key but WOULD be able to. I grinned and said, I've heard THAT before.. but they promised it would be happening.

I then asked what happens to off site guests particularly those loyal guests (like me!) with an AP ESPECIALLY if the regular fastpass was going to disappear. The two people I was talking with looked nervously at each other and said we can't say right now but there are some very nice features of the system which we can't discuss right now which will answer all the current problems people are raising.

I said oh come on, gimme something :/ cos at the moment it sounds like if I'm offsite, I wont be able to get FPs and the lines are going to be stupid? They had a brief look at each other and then one said "hows the new in park wifi working for you?" I said yeah it's been great, he said "these new phones are amazing aren't they? < wink >".

So I'm kinda guessing that there's going to be a lot of stuff we can all access via smartphones when the full nextgen system goes live.

Britchick
22-12-2012, 11:29 PM
We found the wifi and apps really useful in working out what to ride etc, even booking new dining reservations.

We tried the payment things in the contemporary but they didn't always work, I think the teller thought I was pretty sad for requesting to use it.

keith
23-12-2012, 12:05 AM
We found the wifi and apps really useful in working out what to ride etc, even booking new dining reservations.

We tried the payment things in the contemporary but they didn't always work, I think the teller thought I was pretty sad for requesting to use it.

yeah agreed!

We were shown the system and then later on we met a couple of the guys who were training the staff on it (CMs kept saying to one of them hey you were in the video!!). They were desperate to see people try it and asked us if we'd try it and keep a log which we did.

When the CMs were comfortable with it, it worked great! more often than not though the CMs didn't know what to do. Particularly bad at the contempo cafe when the guy kept buzzing the card and the mickey would go green suggesting it had charged, but because what he didn't see on screen was what he expected, he did it again and finally ended up running the card normally. Of course you guessed it, that transaction went through multiple times.

Entry to EPCOT was easier with it too although I don't know if that was because the finger print scanners were just newer.

Wendy
23-12-2012, 10:35 AM
So it sounds like it will be a 2 tier system :(

If my money isn't good enough for them because I don't stay on site and I can't use fast pass+ then there are a lot of places I would like to visit in the US. Maybe my times at Disney will be coming to an end :sigh: I would be truly sad but if this goes the same way as the dining plan then, what would be the point :(

keith
23-12-2012, 11:45 AM
So it sounds like it will be a 2 tier system :(


Just don't know yet. I think Disney look at universals onsite only frontofqueue and must be thinking yeah that's what we should've done. They really do seem to want everyone onsite and on the dining plan.

Question is, will they suffer the bad pr by removing FP from everyone offsite given that people have had access to it for so long.

It would be easy enough to give offsite people say 3 FP and onsite 5 :/

I don't know, we'll have to wait and see I guess

Tink
23-12-2012, 01:26 PM
Disney has come under fire for some time now, by the "local contingent." It is a strongly held belief here that if it weren't for the local population, WDW would never have gotten off the ground. It was NOT popular when it first opened and the locals kept it going (albeit with specials).

Now, of course locals are not needed. :shrug: Also, people staying off site were courted to be sure they came to WDW and spent time and money.

It seems that Disney is moving away from the off property visitor to the onsite visitor. Yep, it is true that's where the money is. Stay onsite, pay higher than off site rates, eat on site, pay higher than off site prices and in many cases receive less than offsite service.

If that is the economic plan going forward then I hope it works for them because WDW is a huge employer here in central florida (after all, who really wants to be here other than 'gators and mosquitos) and it would cause a huge depression if they pulled out.

So many of us have a sense of loyalty to WDW, and when it feels (or is demonstrated) that the loyalty is not returned, we are not pleased.

I know we have really cut back on our visits. This used to be our Friday routine: Park at BW. Walk in through the BW, stopping at the Screen Door to get some drinks. We'd have a drink and then go in through the IG. Walk around the WS, do this, do that, and then decide where we wanted to have dinner. Have dinner on property, and leave by stopping at the Screen Door, buying another drink or two and strolling the BW before we left. It used to be that a little single serving wine, or beer was much less than you paid in the park. Sometimes we'd get a drink from Spoodle's walk up window.

Now, we park at the EPCOT parking lot (the prices of drinks on the BW are the same as in the park, so no reason to enjoy a little price cut drink there any longer). Walk around the park. Leave when we are hungry and dine elsewhere if not home. :shrug: We don't bother going when crowds are high anymore. Too much trouble. We don't eat on property any more. Can't get in without a reservation. Even if we could the prices are stupid and the quality has dropped off markedly.

So, in our estimation, WDW is doing just fine without our pennies... no matter. We do other things with our Fridays now. :shrug:

Disney carries on... and we long for the fun of the past.

Wendy
23-12-2012, 02:01 PM
I remember when you used to post photos from your weekly trips to Epcot :sigh: How things have changed and sadly not for the better.

I know at the end of the day Disney are a business and they are only there to make money, but it is a shame that they are treating the locals the way they do.

I guess I want the old days back when I was amazed at how clean the toilets were, the parks were spotless and the cast members were all friendly :sigh:

I hope Disney think carefully about this fastpass+ I really do, I can see them losing a lot of people who stay offsite. At the end of the day, if I wanted second rate service and wanted a Disney fix, I could go to Disneyland Paris :shrug:

Johnie
23-12-2012, 03:45 PM
I don't see how on earth they could compete with Universal and their FOTL. Universal only has 3 hotels. That's why it works!

Well if I'm going to have to stay onsite for anything then Disney may very well become a once a year vacation spot :-(

Slowhand
23-12-2012, 05:01 PM
So I'm kinda guessing that there's going to be a lot of stuff we can all access via smartphones when the full nextgen system goes live.

On this basis it won`t be long before you need a masters degree in technology in order to get on any of the rides. :lol:
[It may well be Blackpool for me instead of WDW next year!]

keith
23-12-2012, 06:38 PM
On this basis it won`t be long before you need a masters degree in technology in order to get on any of the rides. :lol:
[It may well be Blackpool for me instead of WDW next year!]

:lol: yeah a very fair point indeed. If they make it conditional on technology people may not even have, then it'll be even less inclusive and unfair.

They're very very VERY excited about the NextGen project which includes the wifi/rfid cards and so on. I guess we'll have to wait and see how it goes

Vikki
24-12-2012, 10:08 AM
You should stick to the good ones ;-)

:lol:

I was listening to one of my favourite podcasts the other day and they were saying they're intending on bringing in a system where you can book your fastpass 60 days prior, much like the 180 day ADR system.

Wendy
24-12-2012, 10:29 AM
:lol:

I was listening to one of my favourite podcasts the other day and they were saying they're intending on bringing in a system where you can book your fastpass 60 days prior, much like the 180 day ADR system.

:yes: I think thats the plan :lol: how anyone is supposed to know what they want to ride on Wednesday at 2pm, 60 days in advance is beyond me :lol:

Vikki
24-12-2012, 10:46 AM
I totally agree. I think the only way I'd be tempted to use it was I'd I knew I was going to be in a park due to an ADR, I might book one of the big attractions that are hard to get, like soarin for example....

keith
24-12-2012, 11:00 AM
That's right, it'll include prebooking for sure.

The problem is, like the dining plan, if everyone else is booking x days out, it forces you to do the same and again, bang goes being able to make a decision on the day.

Vikki
24-12-2012, 11:10 AM
That's the thing..... as with all these things, there's pros and cons I guess. Then again, that is the whole point of a discussion forum ;)

Johnie
24-12-2012, 02:28 PM
Ugh I can't preplan so much!!

Britchick
24-12-2012, 05:44 PM
at least i'd get a chance at riding toy story mania, only made it once in 2 visits :rotfl:

keith
24-12-2012, 05:50 PM
at least i'd get a chance at riding toy story mania, only made it once in 2 visits :rotfl:

Ive yet to ever try it!!!!

Britchick
24-12-2012, 06:03 PM
Ive yet to ever try it!!!!

phew... i was feeling a complete failure!

Slowhand
26-12-2012, 05:06 PM
Ive yet to ever try it!!!!
Same here!
Whever we get to that ride, the Fastpass return time is already several hours away, at which time we would be getting ready for dinner!

I`m darned if I am going to get there at park opening though, just for that one ride, :nono:

Vikki
26-12-2012, 07:20 PM
I`m darned if I am going to get there at park opening though, just for that one ride, :nono:

Totally agree!

We've only ridden it once.

keith
26-12-2012, 08:14 PM
Same here!
Whever we get to that ride, the Fastpass return time is already several hours away, at which time we would be getting ready for dinner!

I`m darned if I am going to get there at park opening though, just for that one ride, :nono:

Exactly my feeling! :yes:

Britchick
26-12-2012, 08:20 PM
We do usually get to parks for opening just don't spend a lot of time at DHS

catrancher
07-01-2013, 12:57 PM
In a post by Tom Staggs over on the Disney Parks Blog today, they're making a big deal out of this new system. I made the following comment on his post:


While I applaud the effort, Iíve got concerns about the FastPass+ system.

Just like the dining plan, unless I book my dining way in advance of my trip, I stand a good chance of not being able to get the reservations I want. Personally, I donít know months in advance what I want to eat.

Iím afraid the FastPass+ system is going to end up the same way. Unless I book my FastPasses months in advance, I may not be able to find an available time to ride specific attractions. To some degree, this happens today. Just look how many times you try to get a FastPass to an attraction like Soariní and find out there arenít any.

Perhaps Iím just missing something in this but for me itís a bit of a concern. And itís going to take away a bit of the carefree spontaneity that has long contributed to the fun of a Disney vacation.

Tom

It will be interesting to see if my comments make it pass the moderation stage or if they basically tell me to sit down and shut up. :shocked:

Tom (:macwave:... awaiting moderation...)