How To Use Disney’s Rider Switch
Is your child too short or simply too scared to take part in some of Disney’s headline attractions? Disney’s Rider Switch allows parents of even the smallest of children the option of experiencing all the thrills Walt Disney World has to offer, while still minimizing time standing in line. However, in the last year Disney has implemented some changes to their Rider Switch system that has left some adults confused as to how it works.
Here are the “ins and outs” of Disney’s Rider Switch and what you need to know in order to utilize this service:
- Not all rides and attractions at Disney offer Rider Switch but most with height requirements, or any sense of thrill, do. Ask the cast member at the front of each attraction if it is available.
- When you arrive at the attraction your entire party must be present. This is important as many families split up before arriving at the ride. The cast member will only give the Rider Switch pass when they see the non-riding child present with the group.
- Next, you will need to designate to the cast member which members of the party are riding first and which will be staying with the child and riding later. Only two adults in each party can receive a Rider Switch pass, so send all other adults to ride with group one. It is important to note that if the first group is using a Fastpass on the attraction, then all members of the second party must also have a Fastpass. The cast member will scan all Magic Bands or tickets to verify. This has changed from years past where only the first group needed a Fastpass.
- The cast member will then scan group two’s Magic Bands or tickets and a Rider-Switch pass for the attraction will pop up in the Fastpass section on your phone’s My Disney Experience app. It will then be attached to your Magic Band. For many of the rides you can return at any point in the day to use the Rider Switch pass. However, on some of the more popular attractions, the Rider Switch pass will specify a specific time window you have to use the Rider Switch pass. Typically, it’s the hour following the first check-in. Also, adults can only hold one Rider Switch pass at a time, so although you don’t necessarily have to ride back-to-back, this if often the best option so you can get another Rider Switch pass for other rides. This should be taken into account when initially booking advanced Fastpasses. Rider Switch may take more time so please plan accordingly. While group one is riding, group two is free to enjoy another attraction. Please don’t feel you must hang around the ride entrance waiting for group one to finish! If group one is riding Space Mountain, group two can have fun riding Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin or the People Mover, for example.
- Once group one has experienced the attraction, they can meet back up with group two and trade off the non-riding child(ren). Then group two can scan their Magic Bands in the Fastpass line and experience the attraction for themselves. If an older, or braver, child rode with group one, they can return and ride again with group two, as Rider Switch allows up to three people to re-enter the attraction. This is a great benefit allowing both parents to experience the ride with their children, and the children the freedom to ride twice!
Disney’s Rider Switch system really is a great way to allow families with young children to experience all that Disney has to offer. With some planning the system can really allow you to maximize your time in the park. Please ask your Wishes Family Travel agent if you have further questions or want to incorporate Rider Switch access into your customized touring plans. Or contact me today to start planning your next Walt Disney World vacation! I would love to help!
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