Genie, Genie+, & Lightning Lane Replacing FastPASS for Disneyland and Walt Disney World

Genie, Genie+, & Lightning Lane Replacing FastPASS for Disneyland and Walt Disney World

Well…the genie is out of the bottle, and it offers phenomenal additional costs with itty bitty value. We look at this new Genie program, what is known as Genie+ as well as Lightning Lane, along with it’s two options. We compare this to the previous Disney programs of FastPass, FastPASS+ and MaxPass. We talk about changes and additions to the apps, what’s happening to virtual queues, and how Disability Access Service guests are impacted. Then we’ll project what this means to annual pass holders. It’s big, it’s complicated, and it’s expensive, but Disney keeps reassuring you that it is designed with it’s Superfans in mind. Is it? We have a comprehensive list of the advantages and disadvantages. When this launches, will your wish be that none of this ever happened in the first place? We’ll explore that reality and more in this very involved Disney at Play podcast.

Notes are shown below but our podcast carries narrative of the entire experience. You can find the podcast here on PodbeaniTunesSpotify,  and ListenNotes. Please subscribe! 

Special AR Imagery

In case you’re not sure what these Special AR lenses means at Walt Disney World, consider the following:


  • Should be able to find some way to get on a ride—no complete guest denial
  • It’s more day of instead of months before
  • It utilizes more technology
  • It somewhat simplifies the advance planning chaos of Walt Disney World
  • Paid Lightning Lane selections can be made across attractions
  • You can ignore all of this and go to the standby line (unless there is only virtual queues)
  • You can still identify softer times to be in the park when you don’t need Genie+ or Lightning Lane.
  • I have not used these options in Hong Kong or Shanghai and they haven’t made a difference to my day.
  • If no one uses paid options, standby will be great


  • How it’s being rolled out has poor optics
  • It’s harder to make sense of—especially to first-time or seldom visiting guests
  • It will be frustrating to learn that once you pay for Genie+ it doesn’t include rides like Ratatouille in the multiple experiences.
  • Conversely, you may not understand that you’ll have to pay for Genie+ as well to then pay extra for selected experiences like Ratatouille.
  • Not offering greater incentive to stay on Disney property
  • I may be annoyed being “sold” by Genie on lesser options when greater options are blocked off.
  • Not all parks offer the same value for $15 (WDW) and $20 (DL)
  • You get greater value when you park hop—but that costs you more money
  • You have to put out a lot more money to visit Disney
  • Not sure how it’s combining or impacting dining reservations
  • Genie+ is not being made available as part of Annual Passes
  • Complimentary PhotoPass will probably go away to Annual Passholders
  • It is NOT maximizing flexibility when there is no standby option
  • It may be disadvantageous for Disney Cast Members as well
  • A Superfan should not be defined as one who is willing to put money to the table


  • It’s not fair that a ticketed guest has to pay or have luck of the draw to get into a virtual queue to visit an attraction—It’s sticking the knife in and twisting
  • Genie+ should be included with Disney annual passes
  • The only way to put the genie back in the bottle is to not use Genie+ in the first place

Ready to Visit the Disney Parks?

Hopefully this podcast has made you realize you need help and support in planning your next trip to Disney. David and Leah with Out the Door Travel know Disney in ways few do and they can make your next trip on land or sea an exciting one–or at least less stressful! Be sure to contact them as you explore your next vacation. There is no charge to utilize their services, but it will save you enormous time getting all the details right, and with their insight you can be assured you’re going to experience the best trip possible. Contact them today!

David and Leah Zanolla
(309) 863-5469
Instagram: @otdwithdavid

J. Jeff Kober

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