Tips to Beat the Lines at Disneyland
These are some of the best tips to beat the lines at Disneyland.
Also check out the Rides Tips, which includes helpful tips like height restrictions, which rides are best for toddlers, and so on.
- Lines 13, 20, or 21 move fastest at the Disneyland entrance.
- Adults with kids don't have to stand in line if the ride is only for the adult.Example 1:
If Mom wants to ride Space Mountain but Dad and kids do not, tell the
guy working the ride and show him your family. He will let Mom go in a
special, shorter line.Example 2: Mom and Dad both want
to ride Space Mountain but they have an infant who can't. All 3 wait in
line and when they get to the front, tell the staff you want to trade
off. Mom rides first while Dad and baby wait; when Mom is done, Dad
takes her seat and rides immediately.
- Lines that move quickly
even though they look crowded: Haunted Mansion, Buzz Lightyear, Pirates
of the Carribbean, Jungle Cruise, Indiana Jones, and Tower of Terror.
- When the park opens, work your way backwards through the rides instead of stopping at the first attraction you get to. You will beat most of the crowds.
- When the park opens, pick a popular ride that does NOT offer a FastPass. This is your only chance to get in line while it's still relatively short.
- ToonTown: Go right when the park opens.
- Adventureland: Go at night.
- Matterhorn Tip 1: The line that wraps around the Tomorrowland side is almost always shorter.
- Matterhorn Tip 2: The righthand track lasts 19 seconds longer than the ride on the lefthand track.
- New Orleans Square: Go a couple hours before closing.
- The line for Dumbo takes forever but you just have to do it or your kids will never forgive you. Go right when the park opens for the shortest wait.
- Ride at dinnertime. Most people eat dinner between 4:00 pm and 6:00 pm, so lines will be shorter.
- Ride during parades. Catch the parade at some point but take advantage of the shorter lines too.
- Use a Ride Planning program to map out your ride schedule for minimum time in line. Two good ones are TouringPlans.com and RideMax.com.
- FastPass. It's a free ticket system within Disneyland that will save you tons of time. Learn it!
- Enter early. Show up at least a half hour before opening and bring something for your kids to do while you stand in line.
- Take an afternoon break.
Spend the afternoon at your hotel, when the park is most crowded. When
you return, the lines for the small children's rides will be much
- The Disneyland Train does a circle around the park, so use it for transportation.
- Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday are the least crowded days at Disneyland.
- Bathroom lines are usually smaller at the facilities behind the Carnation Cafe on Main Street.
- Don't get stuck in the parade! Know what time they start so you can get out of there if you don't plan to watch it, or you'll be trapped.
- Split up for a coffee run.
If you arrive when the park first opens, have part of your group get
in line for a ride while the other gets coffee-and-muffins-to-go at the
Carnation Cafe on Main Street. When the coffee buddy joins the ride
buddy, everyone wins! Thanks to Kayla from Aptos, CA for that tip!
- Start with Adventureland and go clockwise.
Says tipster Jennifer, "This helps prevent criss-crossing the park so
many times because it will usually plant you near parades, shows and
restaurants around the times you need them. Also, most people tend to go
counter-clockwise (i.e. starting with Tomorrowland), so you somehow
seem to encounter less crowds going clockwise." Thanks Jennifer!
Got more tips to beat the lines?
Send them in!