We arrived to Walt Disney World in August with no FastPass+ made for Flight of Passage in Pandora – The World of Avatar. I know, total former Disney Parks Moms Panelist fail. Those FastPasses go like hotcakes. If you don’t have FastPasses and you don’t want to wait in line for hours, then I’ll tell you how to Rope Drop Pandora- The World of Avatar and my best Disney Pandora tips. What is Rope Drop, you ask? It basically means park opening, and you want to get there EARLY.
How to Rope Drop Pandora- The World of Avatar
I had read a lot of different blogs and talked to other friends before I made a plan. I also scoped out Pandora a couple of days earlier to see if it was worth the effort to bring the rest of my family. The answer was yes, so I reluctantly set the alarm early on our Animal Kingdom Day. I knew my family would love it, but mama wanted to sleep! I just remembered all the advice I had shelled out as a Disney Parks Moms Panelist – get there early. You’ll accomplish so much in those first couple of hours. So we decided to get there early.
It was mid-to-end of August on a Sunday, non-Extra Magic Hours day. Ha! You following? It was still summer, but some schools were already in session like Atlanta and some Florida schools were starting the next day. Park opening was 9:00 a.m. Most buses at Disney hotels will start around 7:00 a.m. to get guests with early breakfast reservations. If we caught the very first bus (we were at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort), then we would be fine. We got to the bus stop at 7:00 a.m. exactly, I looked at the transportation monitors and it said the bus would arrive at 7:05 a.m. I got antsy and called an Uber. It cost us $14, and we arrived at Disney’s Animal Kingdom at 7:20 a.m.
I decided not to bring a bag, so I wouldn’t have to go to through bag check. If you do have to bring a bag, I recommend sending one person through the line, while the rest of the party goes straight to the gate to wait until they start letting Guests into the park. Also if you arrive and there’s a line forming on one side of bag check, they will open the other side as well, so get in line, even if there’s not someone ready to check bags.
Best Disney Pandora Tips
At around 7:55 a.m., they let us in to the gates where they held us until about 8:15 a.m. We were one of the first families there. Side note: while standing in line I witnessed two grown men pushing and cursing at each other in front of their families. It was uncomfortable and scary. People, it’s not that serious. Even if you’re behind 5, 6, or 15 families, you’ll still get to ride Flight of Passage in a timely manner. Once they start allowing people in to the next holding point, it’s a free for all.
Some people start running. My family and I were walking at a pretty fast pace, and we still ended up about 6 rows back outside of the entrance to Pandora – The World of Avatar. This is the next holding area.
At around 8:38 a.m., we were allowed in and were walked to Flight of Passage by Cast Members. This is a much more orderly process. We went into the main queue, but bypassed some of it to what I assume is the FastPass entrance. My family and I were in the first group of rides, because there are a lot of rooms. We walked off of Flight of Passage by 8:50 a.m.
After we were done, we walked around to take pictures and explore. If we had gone to Na’vi River Journey right after, we probably would have been able to ride with a 10 or 15 minute wait. Around 9:10 a.m., the wait was posted at 30 minutes, so we decided to ride other attractions in Animal Kingdom, because lines are shortest at park opening. We knew we were coming back in the evening and the wait would probably would have been the same or less.
Is Flight of Passage Worth the Wait?
As we left Pandora, the line was outside Pandora across the bridge with a posted wait time of 300 minutes. I think the wait time was probably inflated. My friend said she arrived recently (in September) about 10 minutes after park opening and the wait time said 250 minutes and they waited about an hour. However, remember that’s also in September and was right after Hurricane Irma, so wait times were lower everywhere.
If you arrive at park opening or later, one of my Disney Pandora tips is to check the wait times on the Disney app as you’re walking in. If it’s over 200 minutes, then I suggest riding other rides in Animal Kingdom first and returning later unless Pandora is the only thing you came to Animal Kingdom Park to accomplish. I would not get in line if it’s past where the queue starts, but that’s just me.
We rode at least 6 other attractions in the first 2 hours and then returned to Pandora later that night. We were able to ride Flight of Passage two more times with waits of about an hour in the evening. Pandora- The World of Avatar is stunning in the daylight and at night. Is it worth the wait? Absolutely!
In theory are you still waiting to ride if getting there early? Sure. But the difference is the number of things you’ve accomplished by the end of a couple of hours. My kids loved Flight of Passage and couldn’t stop talking about it. They were happy to wait in line again. The ride did make me motion sick, not as much as Star Tours, but I was able to take off my glasses during the ride to calm my stomach. The movement of the ride simulator did not make me sick.
More Disney Pandora Tips
The best Disney Pandora tip is to obviously get yourself a FastPass for Flight of Passage. However that’s proving to be difficult. I’ve heard of them opening FastPass+ reservations a couple days before 60 days in advance, so a lot of people miss the window. I’ve also heard people grabbing FastPass+ reservations a week before their trip. Keep trying, but if you can’t get one, then just get there early and have fun!
Take the time to explore! Pandora – the World of Avatar is one of my favorite spots. In a future post, I’ll talk about the food, because the FOOD!! One of my best Disney Pandora tips for food is eat at Satu’li Canteen! In my opinion it’s the best quick-service dining location in the Walt Disney World Resort. Happy Banshee riding!