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Old 09-30-2014, 09:35 PM   #1
Muckbeast
Earning My Ears
 
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Can we talk about how bad FastPass+ is?

I am in the middle of my first trip with FastPass+ only (when I was here last November you had the FastPass+ as well as the old system).

This makes me really sad because the original FastPass system was very well designed. Furthermore, I really miss the fact that a Disney vacation used to be something magical you could enjoy without planning every single second of your vacation months in advance.

The MagicBands are wonderful, but the FastPass+ system is abysmal. This is the New Coke of Disney. This is a staggeringly bad idea and even worse implementation.

1) Too control freak. From observing the system and talking to Disney cast members about it, there is a philosophy of controlling how people want to enjoy their vacation. This is unacceptable. Some things I have been told:

"People were only riding the same attraction multiple times, or would go to a park and only ride a couple favorite attractions and leave."

Yeah... so? You mean people were happy and doing the things they enjoy? It is their money and their vacation.

2) Spontaneity is being destroyed and replaced by making vacation feel like a job. I understand that some people like to plan things in advance. That's fine. But the entire park should not be designed to require that.

3) Micromanagement feels like a job. The complexity and limitations along with the reliance on limited kiosks + smart phone app makes this feel like work, not vacation.

4) Lines and waits are much longer. There may be a number of reasons why this happens. I suspect one reason is people are riding crap they don't really want to ride just to burn through their first 3 FP+ and then be allowed to FP with a little more freedom (or FP the same attraction).

5) People are even more stressed. Watching and talking to people they are even more stressed out than ever about when and what they can ride. This is connected to #1, #2, #3, and #4.

6) Stop and smell the roses? Ain't nobody got time for that! I'm late, I'm late, for a very important date! Stopping to look at flowers, watch a street show, take a cool photo, sit down to talk or people watch, or anything fun and unstructured barely exists now. You're constantly on a schedule. I am using the same software I use at work to keep track of where I need to be at what time. Miserable. My vacation experience is the same as being at work.

7) Slave to the smartphone, like at work. I have to check my smartphone many times a day to keep things on track and reschedule things if needed. Of course every time I check there are work email notifications I see that are then harder to avoid. This again makes vacation feel like work. Terrible.

8) ??? I'm only scratching the surface here.

Does Disney know how despised this system is?

Is there any hope of it either being dumped or massively overhauled?

Last edited by Muckbeast; 09-30-2014 at 10:12 PM.
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Old 09-30-2014, 09:38 PM   #2
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Let me jump in with the gist of most of the next umpteen responses...

Quote-
We LOVED it cuz we didn't have to get to the park early, and we didn't have to walk ALL THE WAY to the attraction to get a FP.
-Unquote

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Old 09-30-2014, 09:39 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Muckbeast View Post
I am in the middle of my first trip with FastPass+ only (when I was here last November you had the FastPass+ as well as the old system).

The MagicBands are wonderful, but the FastPass+ system is abysmal. This is the New Coke of Disney. This is a staggeringly bad idea and even worse implementation.

1) Too control freak. From observing the system and talking to Disney cast members about it, there is a philosophy of controlling how people want to enjoy their vacation. This is unacceptable. Some things I have been told:

"People were only riding the same attraction multiple times, or would go to a park and only ride a couple favorite attractions and leave."

Yeah... so? You mean people were happy and doing the things they enjoy? It is their money and their vacation.

2) Spontaneity is being destroyed and replaced by making vacation feel like a job. I understand that some people like to plan things in advance. That's fine. But the entire park should not be designed to require that.

3) Micromanagement feels like a job. The complexity and limitations along with the reliance on limited kiosks + smart phone app makes this feel like work, not vacation.

4) Lines and waits are much longer. There may be a number of reasons why this happens. I suspect one reason is people are riding crap they don't really want to ride just to burn through their first 3 FP+ and then be allowed to FP with a little more freedom (or FP the same attraction).

5) People are even more stressed. Watching and talking to people they are even more stressed out than ever about when and what they can ride. This is connected to #1, #2, #3, and #4.

6) ??? I'm only scratching the surface here.

Does Disney know how despised this system is?

Is there any hope of it either being dumped or massively overhauled?
This topic never, ever comes up.
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Old 09-30-2014, 09:49 PM   #4
Muckbeast
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Originally Posted by Praying Colonel View Post
This topic never, ever comes up.
Sorry. I did a topic search, and people would cursorily talk about it, but mostly I saw people just trying to figure out how to make the best of it.

I understand that, but I guess I wanted to commiserate with other Disney fans who see how terrible this system is, and maybe hope someone had heard something about it being changed/dumped in the future.
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Old 09-30-2014, 09:51 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robo View Post
Let me jump in with the gist of most of the next umpteen responses...

Quote-
We LOVED it cuz we didn't have to get to the park early, and we didn't have to walk ALL THE WAY to the attraction to get a FP.
-Unquote

I felt the same way! We were able to sleep in once or twice without fear of missing out. And not being fast pass hoarders I felt relieved knowing the few we REALLY wanted each day were accounted for.
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Old 09-30-2014, 09:52 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Muckbeast View Post

1) Too control freak. From observing the system and talking to Disney cast members about it, there is a philosophy of controlling how people want to enjoy their vacation. This is unacceptable. Some things I have been told:

"People were only riding the same attraction multiple times, or would go to a park and only ride a couple favorite attractions and leave."

Yeah... so? You mean people were happy and doing the things they enjoy? It is their money and their vacation.



Does Disney know how despised this system is?

Is there any hope of it either being dumped or massively overhauled?

These particular observations caught my eye.

1. The cast member comments are indeed out of place. Yes, people visit theme parks for a variety of purposes and limiting their options makes no sense at all. Very good observation by the way.

2. No. Disney relies on guest feedback from flawed survey and believes the majority of their guests give FP+ "two thumbs up".

3. Chances of this being dumped or massively overhauled are slim.
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Old 09-30-2014, 09:54 PM   #7
Muckbeast
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robo View Post
Let me jump in with the gist of most of the next umpteen responses...

Quote-
We LOVED it cuz we didn't have to get to the park early, and we didn't have to walk ALL THE WAY to the attraction to get a FP.
-Unquote

I know you're being sarcastic/funny, which I appreciate.

But addressing such points in advance: those parts could have been accomplished in a far better manner with very minor tweaks/improvements to the old system that wouldn't have introduced all the problems listed in the OP.
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Old 09-30-2014, 10:03 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Muckbeast View Post
Some things I have been told:

"People were only riding the same attraction multiple times, or would go to a park and only ride a couple favorite attractions and leave."
This point doesn't even make any sense. FP+ actually encourages this touring style. You can book FP+ in the middle of a busy afternoon for all 3 mountains at Magic Kingdom back to back to back, ride them all in about an hour, then leave. No way that was happening with the old system.

BTW, I love to plan and really like the FP+ system.
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Old 09-30-2014, 10:06 PM   #9
Praying Colonel
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Muckbeast View Post
Sorry. I did a topic search, and people would cursorily talk about it, but mostly I saw people just trying to figure out how to make the best of it.

I understand that, but I guess I wanted to commiserate with other Disney fans who see how terrible this system is, and maybe hope someone had heard something about it being changed/dumped in the future.
No worries. I'd say those of us who believe FP+ is of the devil have worked our way through the 5 stages of grief over the course of the year and are now more or less at the "Acceptance" stage. If you looked back earlier in the year you saw more discussion of the level of suckitude many of us thought FP+ carried. Those in that camp were more at the Anger/Bargaining/Depression stages of the grieving process.
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Old 09-30-2014, 10:09 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Muckbeast View Post
Sorry. I did a topic search, and people would cursorily talk about it, but mostly I saw people just trying to figure out how to make the best of it.

I understand that, but I guess I wanted to commiserate with other Disney fans who see how terrible this system is, and maybe hope someone had heard something about it being changed/dumped in the future.
If you want to commiserate with posters who agree with you, I could give you a list of a dozen or so who have a total of about 300,000 posts and many of their posts over the last year and a half have said exactly what you have said over and over and over again.

As you have noted, most posters have moved on and decided to focus on how to use the system, but there are several who apparently are going to need a few more years to get there.
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Old 09-30-2014, 10:14 PM   #11
Muckbeast
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Muckbeast View Post
6) Stop and smell the roses? Ain't nobody got time for that! I'm late, I'm late, for a very important date! Stopping to look at flowers, watch a street show, take a cool photo, sit down to talk or people watch, or anything fun and unstructured barely exists now. You're constantly on a schedule. I am using the same software I use at work to keep track of where I need to be at what time. Miserable. My vacation experience is the same as being at work.

7) Slave to the smartphone, like at work. I have to check my smartphone many times a day to keep things on track and reschedule things if needed. Of course every time I check there are work email notifications I see that are then harder to avoid. This again makes vacation feel like work. Terrible.
I just added these.
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Old 09-30-2014, 10:15 PM   #12
Shaden
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Muckbeast View Post
I am in the middle of my first trip with FastPass+ only (when I was here last November you had the FastPass+ as well as the old system).

This makes me really sad because the original FastPass system was very well designed. Furthermore, I really miss the fact that a Disney vacation used to be something magical you could enjoy without planning every single second of your vacation months in advance.

The MagicBands are wonderful, but the FastPass+ system is abysmal. This is the New Coke of Disney. This is a staggeringly bad idea and even worse implementation.

1) Too control freak. From observing the system and talking to Disney cast members about it, there is a philosophy of controlling how people want to enjoy their vacation. This is unacceptable. Some things I have been told:

"People were only riding the same attraction multiple times, or would go to a park and only ride a couple favorite attractions and leave."

Yeah... so? You mean people were happy and doing the things they enjoy? It is their money and their vacation.

2) Spontaneity is being destroyed and replaced by making vacation feel like a job. I understand that some people like to plan things in advance. That's fine. But the entire park should not be designed to require that.

3) Micromanagement feels like a job. The complexity and limitations along with the reliance on limited kiosks + smart phone app makes this feel like work, not vacation.

4) Lines and waits are much longer. There may be a number of reasons why this happens. I suspect one reason is people are riding crap they don't really want to ride just to burn through their first 3 FP+ and then be allowed to FP with a little more freedom (or FP the same attraction).

5) People are even more stressed. Watching and talking to people they are even more stressed out than ever about when and what they can ride. This is connected to #1, #2, #3, and #4.

6) ??? I'm only scratching the surface here.

Does Disney know how despised this system is?

Is there any hope of it either being dumped or massively overhauled?
I agree with a ton of what you said.

It has changed the feel of the vacation, for the worse.

Now I too, enjoyed using FPs on arrival day in the afternoon, and even a day or two when I slept in, didn't have to worry about availability. Both cool features... though to be fair I didn't really have to worry about that before FP+ ... it is only FP+ that has increased the demands and wait times that now require that I secure my FP in advance.

Now people are going to come in and tell you you can still be spontaneous, that you don't HAVE to have FPs preselected, you can put the phone down, ride stand by ... blah blah. Its all garbage, terrible defense of Disney syndrome.

The fact is we didn't have to worry about this May 2013, or 2012, or 2011 ... we got much more for our vacation dollar on those trips, with less stress, planning, etc. Used a ton of FPs, didn't have to "run around" the parks (more absolute garbage usually tossed out there).

But hey, its STILL just testing right ?
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Old 09-30-2014, 10:23 PM   #13
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I agree with OP. It is a flawed system and some attractions just don't need FP. I mean MuppetVision 3D?! Monsters Inc. laugh Floor?! Come on.

I was there last week. The MDE app (or crapp as we called it) kept freezing or shutting down or said there were conflicts with booking FP s for certain members of our party. It was just frustrating. Then when rides went down you received an email with the choices for replacement FP. Buzz Lightyear or Pooh as a replacement for thunder mountain? How bout space splash of mine train?

Don't even get me started on saving a place on a sidewalk for a parade or fireworks show!!

I also miss the joy you bring others when you give away fast passes you aren't using. That was always a fun thing to do especially for the big ticket rides.

I miss the days of characters walking around the park without security, fast passes for disney resort guests only and extra magic hours with a small fee because you really felt like you had the park to yourself. WDW feels like a factory where we are placed on a conveyor belt and told where to look, what to do, and what times to do it. This is the first time in 20+ trips where I didn't feel the Disney Magic.

My next trip will be to DL because as of now these systems aren't in place and its a less restrictive environment.
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Old 09-30-2014, 10:24 PM   #14
Muckbeast
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ucfknight View Post
You can book FP+ in the middle of a busy afternoon for all 3 mountains at Magic Kingdom back to back to back, ride them all in about an hour, then leave. No way that was happening with the old system.
That is absolutely false.

Not only are they not available (not even at slow times like right now), but that requires a minimum of 3 hours. And at two parks (Epcot and Hollywood) that is utterly forbidden since you can only book *one* of their popular "Tier 1" attractions.

And if you want to ride the same ride twice, you need at least 4 hours to do that (assuming it is available, which it won't be) since you have to burn through 2 FPs you don't even want, just to be allowed by this control freak system to FP the same ride a second time.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ucfknight View Post
BTW, I love to plan and really like the FP+ system.
The only people this system is at all good for are type A people who want to plan every second of their vacation in advance to the detriment of everyone else.

This system feels like an insanely regimented job where everything has to be planned in extreme detail months in advance and slavishly followed according to preferences that are not your own.

It is a total disaster and a failure of anything resembling a "vacation."
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Old 09-30-2014, 10:26 PM   #15
Muckbeast
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Praying Colonel View Post
No worries. I'd say those of us who believe FP+ is of the devil have worked our way through the 5 stages of grief over the course of the year and are now more or less at the "Acceptance" stage. If you looked back earlier in the year you saw more discussion of the level of suckitude many of us thought FP+ carried. Those in that camp were more at the Anger/Bargaining/Depression stages of the grieving process.
Quote:
Originally Posted by wisblue View Post
If you want to commiserate with posters who agree with you, I could give you a list of a dozen or so who have a total of about 300,000 posts and many of their posts over the last year and a half have said exactly what you have said over and over and over again.

As you have noted, most posters have moved on and decided to focus on how to use the system, but there are several who apparently are going to need a few more years to get there.
I would love to hear more from those people.

We need to mobilize.

I've made sure to stop at Guest Relations a few times to explain how bad this system is.

I own a video game studio that has been making games for 20+ years. If there is one thing I know it is how to design complex systems for people's entertainment. This FP+ ain't it.
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