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A Guide to Disney Genie, Genie Plus & Lightning Lanes

What is Disney Genie? What about Genie+? And Lightning Lanes? When are FastPasses coming back?

With so many changes in the way you plan your day at Disney World or Disneyland, it can be confusing to sort it all out and know how to make the most of your visit.

That’s where I come in.

If you’re planning a trip to Disney World or Disneyland, read this guide to learn more about Disney Genie, Disney Genie Plus, and Lightning Lanes, so you can plan the best day ever.

What is the Disney Genie app?

Photo of a woman checking into a dining reservation using her mobile phone.
Photo by Matt Stroshane, courtesy of Disney.

Disney Genie is technically not an app, it’s a service. It’s an update to the existing My Disney Experience and Disneyland apps that helps create your most magical day. 

This Disnified algorithm provides personalized tips and itineraries, working off of your park, ride, and dining reservations, as well as your occasional check-in from the app.

Disney Genie is available free of charge as part of the Disney World My Disney Experience and Disneyland apps.

What is Disney Genie+?

Photo of the Toy Story Mania! ride entrance at Disney World's Hollywood Studios.
Photo by Matt Stroshane, courtesy of Disney.

Disney Genie+ is an add-on to a park reservation that provides entry to the Lightning Lanes of select rides and attractions. 

It’s basically the new version of FastPasses, except it isn’t free. So yes, friends, that means free FastPass are not coming back.

The Disney Genie Plus price depends on which resort you’re visiting. At Disney World, Genie Plus is $15 per day per person, plus tax. At Disneyland, Genie Plus is $20 per day per person, plus tax.

Wait, what are Lightning Lanes?

Lightning Lanes are the new version of FastPass lines. Think of them like VIP lines with a shorter wait than the regular attraction line – or no wait at all.

So how does Genie Plus work?

Photo of a dad and his son at Disneyland, looking at the Disney World app.
Photo courtesy of Disneyland Resort.

At midnight on the day of your park reservation, you can purchase Genie+ for that day. However, you can’t select your first Lightning Lane ride until 7 AM.

After you access your first Lightning Lane ride OR after 2 hours, whichever comes first, you can select another Lightning Lane ride.

In my opinion, this is the worst feature of Genie+, as it forces you to be on your phone all the time, disconnecting you from your experience. 

I’m hoping in the future Disney will allow guests to pre-select 3 lanes like with the FastPass system. That way guests can be more present with their friends and family while at the parks.

How many Lightning Lanes do you get per day?

Photo of Princesses Anna & Elsa at the Frozen Sing Along show at Disney World's Hollywood Studios.
Photo by Meg Frost, all rights reserved.

If you’re a rope drop to fireworks kind of visitor, you can really minimize wait times by staying on top of your Lightning Lane reservations. 

Otherwise, Disney estimates guests should be able to get 2-3 ride selections out of Disney Genie Plus (source).

That said, you also have the option of purchasing individual Lightning Lane passes. More on that in the next section!

Can you purchase individual Lightning Lanes?

Photo of a family on the Ratatouille ride at Disney World's Epcot theme park.
Photo by Matt Stroshane, courtesy of Disney.

Yes, you can purchase individual Lightning Lane passes for up to 2 rides or attractions per day.

You do not have to purchase Genie+ in order to purchase individual Lightning Lanes.

The catch is, the price varies depending on the ride and the day. On one day, a pass might be $7 and on another day it might be $15. This helps keep the Lightning Lanes from overfilling!

Overall, if you purchase Genie+ AND 2 individual Lightning Lanes, you should be able to access 4-5 Lightning Lanes per day.

Which rides work with Genie Plus?

Each park boasts a good number of rides you can choose from. 

Like FastPasses, however, as the day goes on, selections will run out. So if you have your heart set on certain rides, choose them in your preferred priority order if you can.

The list of rides available for individual Lightning Lane passes differs slightly, as some rides are only available for individual passes and vice versa.

To learn about which rides are available for Disney Genie+ and individual Lightning Lane passes, check out the blog posts for your favorite Disney resort below.

Genie Plus at Disney World

Photo of BB-8 at Star Wars: Galaxy Edge.
Photo by Matt Stroshane, courtesy of Disney.

Headed to Disney World? Check out the guides below about the best rides and attractions at Disney World, including which ones are available with Genie+ and individual Lightning Lane passes.

  1. The Best Animal Kingdom Rides & Attractions
  2. The Best Epcot Rides & Attractions
  3. The Best Hollywood Studios Rides & Attractions
  4. The Best Magic Kingdom Rides & Attractions

Genie Plus at Disneyland

Closeup of the entrance to Grizzly River Run standby and lightning lane entrances at Disneyland in California.
Photo by Christian Thompson, courtesy of Disneyland Resort.

Hang tight while we create our guides about the best rides and attractions at Disneyland and California Adventure, as well as which ones work with Genie+ and Lightning Lane.

Is Disney Genie Plus worth it?

Overall, I think Genie+ can be a helpful add-on, especially if you don’t visit often. 

On the other hand, it’s also not necessarily in order to have an enjoyable day at Disney World or Disneyland.

At the end of the day, whether it’s worth your hard earned money and vacation time, is up to you!

Will you be purchasing Genie+ or Lightning Lane passes for your next visit? Let me know in the comments below!

This post was published April 27, 2022. It was last updated on May 19, 2022.

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Jeff Nissley

Saturday 30th of April 2022

I think you are making it too complicated and add stress to a family experience by adding additional tasks to do on the day of a visit that are never a good idea. Fast passes allowed families to plan better and map out the day of how they would navigate a park. Both these passes make this a 7am decision on the day of your visit.

Meg Frost

Wednesday 4th of May 2022

Jeff, I'm not making it more complicated - Disney is! I too would very much prefer the old Fastpass system over Genie+ any day. That said, I doubt Disney will go back to the old system when this one makes them more $$.

Comments are closed.