Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run

For those who are curious about the NEW ride at Disney, here you go. At this time, Star Wars Land has only ONE ride and WAS it worth the wait?

Hey Fans, this week has been a bit crazy. Between the opening of Galaxy’s Edge and Dorian…life at Disney has been a bit of a roller coaster. The opening week of Star Wars Land wasn’t as crowded as expected and many were able to explore the land in peace, thanks Dorian. I am a bit jelly over this. Of course the big draw to this NEW land was the Millennium Falcon ride and as someone who has ridden it 5X so far, here is what I have to say about Millennium Falcon, Smugglers Run.

Millennium Falcon!!
The Wait:

So I think the biggest worry for this ride, this experience, is the wait and is the wait, as in the line, worth it. Basically how long would you wait for this ride? Many, many people have waited hours and hours before for a ride. This is just not something I understand. Perhaps its because I have kids or have other things to experience, but not sure I could or would wait longer than about 60+ mins for any ride (especially with kids, as a mom). As far as the Falcon goes and with it being NEW…I was willing to wait about 1.5 hours. Luckily I didn’t have too, the most we waited was 60 mins and that was per the kids. They decided after riding it at Rope Drop that 45-60 mins was the most they would wait for this attraction. And I think that’s a good number, especially considering the bathrooms aren’t easy to come by.

The queue:

So to touch on my last point, bathrooms…I want it noted that once you enter the building, the front main entrance to the ride…you are kinda locked in. We didn’t see a cast member again until we were ready to see Hondo (READ On). So if anyone has to use the bathroom, you are stuck; no one to tell, no where to go and really no place to exit. And if you do exit, how will you get back into the line. GO TO THE BATHROOM FIRST, lol!! So the line goes back and forth, in and out of the ride queue, there isn’t much to see when outside, other than the backside of the falcon, which is very cool. But you are weaving in and out until you get inside. Once inside you enter a hanger like area with random droid parts, a staged table of sabacc, pilot lockers, etc. Its on theme and fun to look at. You go back and forth inside this area for a while, climbing higher and higher until you reach another doorway.

Once in this doorway, you are again seeing the backside of the Falcon, but higher up. Being able to see the Falcon so close is amazing. The details and colors will blow your mind. I once had to paint a decent sized model of the Falcon and I remember painting all those areas, those colors, those aged and distressed markings. AMAZING!! After this doorway, you are close. Soon you will finally see a Cast Member at another entrance, this is when you get filed into a room to meet Hondo. He welcomes you, explains the situation, you see Chewie and get a lowdown of the mission. Then you are filtered into another hallway before given your positions. Pilot, Gunner or Engineer. SEE VIDEO…

The Falcon:

Once you have your job and color card, you wait in the center of the Falcon, the same area where Chewie was playing his Cyber Chess Game, Same area where Luke got his first Jedi Training Lessons. Get your camera out fast for a quick pic as soon you will be flying the Falcon. Make sure to look for Luke’s Training helmet and get a pic around the “Chess” table. Position rundowns: Pilots “fly” the Falcon complete with Light Speed and trying NOT to crash. The Gunners shot everything and anything. And the Engineers fix the systems by pressing the right buttons at the right time. All 3 jobs work together to complete a favorable outcome; not to die and to collect as many bottles of coaxium as you can.

The Ride:

Once your RIDE COLOR is called, you are off. You quickly get in your seats, buckle up and you are off. Lights are going off like crazy and depending on your job, you just react and push. After riding it 5Xs, I can say that what you do or don’t do DOES matter. The ride is different, shorter or longer depending on the skills of your team. I also found that flying with pilots who crash less (aka NOT my kids), the ride was more smooth, lol. As a Gunner I was pressing buttons like crazy and as Pilots, my kids crashed often and even didn’t push the lever to Light Speed quick enough…this all mattered. In the end, we still made it make safe and got at least 1-2 containers of coaxium, which was Hondo’s goal. Being in the Falcon and flying to Lightspeed was amazing!! It was a Family HIT!

The Skinny:

Ride it, enjoy it. It’s the worth the wait. At least the 60 mins or less we rode it for. After doing it a few times, we might have waited less, but since its still so new…we weren’t being too picky. For motion…I found it was best to NOT be a pilot, to not look at the screen and just concentrate on my flashing buttons. I was very pleased that I didn’t get sick, but also knew that looking up and out would have changed that outcome. Its similar to Mission Space, but not as intense for the motion. Its almost like Star Tours was BEFORE the 3D glasses, but with buttons and levers to press. As far as the wait for the land itself, it was a FUN ride…but I am waiting to see what Rise of the Resistance is like. I do wish I was able to fly more or control more within the Falcon ride, but I get it; Disney needed to make it appropriate for littles too. After seeing my son have a hard time reaching the levers, I realized this.

How about you? What did you think? Have you ridden it yet?

Mahalo for READING and FOLLOWING along – Nina

As usual I am a FREE Magical Vacation Planner (Travel Agent), Booking ALL Disney Destination Vacations (Disney & Beyond) – Contact me TODAY!!

Rope Drop at Disney

Have you ever done Rope Drop at Disney. Do you even know what I am talking about? READ to learn about this Popular Time.

Hey guys, First I want to mention that if you like this blog, these posts…make sure to SUBSCRIBE. SCROLL all the way down and add your email address to get updated every-time I post. I will no longer be linking this blog to Facebook, FB just doesn’t circulate them 🙁 Ok, now back to Rope Drop. We love Rope Drop, especially for when a NEW experience is open. But for those who are scratching your head…let me explain ALL about Rope Drop at Disney.

Years Past:

Years ago, like back when I was youngish…they would let people into the parks, slightly early. You would show your ticket and wait behind an actual ROPE. They (the Cast Members and sometimes Characters) would slowly walk the rope back, allowing more and more guests to enter the park but it also allowed you to get closer and closer to your first destination. This process was known as Rope Drop. It basically meant you were first in line, first in the park and were actual there when they dropped the rope and you got to RUN (I mean walk at a proper pace) and get your first fastpass or ride your first ride of the day.

What happened:

Like all good things, someone ruined it. Actually it was a bunch of people that ruined it. As Disney got more and more popular and certain experiences came out, people would RUN, knock others over, race and trip and fall to get to the MOST Popular NEW thing. This of course became a trend and was deemed unsafe. Imagine herds and herds of people running, knocking over strollers, little kids, etc. I admit, I did this, I remember being apart of this. I, of course, did it safely as I grew up doing this “race” (quick Nina get a fastpass to Haunted Mansion, hurry). But others, not so much. So Disney stopped, for the most part, doing this.

Magic Kingdom:

Then for a while, they would do a “Rope Drop” where people went through the turnstiles and got to wait in-front of the train Station, but actually IN the park. They would welcome you into the park and you could watch them introduce the Family of the Day. Then character after character would arrive on the train. Thats right, the Walt Disney World Railroad would bring a whole celebration of amazing characters for all to see and wave at. Rope Drop became a FUN thing to witness, not just a “first in the park” event. But, of course…that ended too 🙁 They realized that as much as people loved that Welcome Show, that space between the turnstiles and Main Street just wasn’t big enough. AND people would still RUN through the entrance halls and it caused issues. People, aka guests, just can’t contain their excitement. Especially once Elsa and Anna arrived to the Magic Kingdom, lol. Something about those Frozen sisters got everyone a little crazy.

What if they DROPPED the Rope?
Rope Drop for a NEW Land/Ride:

Rope Drop for a NEW experience can often be a completely different “rope”. It could mean that they let you into the park as normal, but hold you in an area within the park to prepare you into a certain land or NEW ride cue. They might actually use a rope as the area might be smaller and easier to contain. This happened for Rope Drop of Galaxy’s Edge in Disneyland. We got into the park a little before opening. Then they held us at the entrance into Adventureland, which is a narrower space. We all gathered and waited. Once the rope was dropped, we all raced to the NEW land. Some ran, some walked and some looked very confused, lol. Either way, we were all going to the same location, had the same goal…but some wanted it more than others I guess. And yes, I ran. I was filming and holding my kids’ hand all at the same time. WE rode the Falcon within 10 mins and it was worth it. We loved the rush, the adrenaline flow and the excitement.

So basically, the moral of the story is this…when I say to arrive at Rope Drop, I mean arrive BEFORE the park actually opens and wait. I mean you should calmly get to your destination at a brisk pace. There may or may not be an actual rope and there may or may not be a little show, a welcome party, etc. It may just mean that you enter the park before all the other sleeping people do. Grab a coffee and a muffin and just do it.

Mahalo for READING and FOLLOWING along – Nina

As usual I am a FREE Magical Vacation Planner (Travel Agent), Booking ALL Disney Destination Vacations (Disney & Beyond) – Contact me TODAY!!

Travel Day: Waking up to Day ONE of Vacation

Today is the day, the day you have been waiting for…but now what? Did you sleep? Packed and ready for the plane? Are you Travel Day Disney Vacation Ready?

Hey guys, Now that Galaxy’s Edge has opened and crazy opening day stress is over, I can get blogging about our trip. Like all trips, its starts with trying to sleep, trying to pack it all, trying to be ready. And then…the flight. How will you make it through? You’re thinking, just get me to Disney, just get me to my resort and I will be good. As someone who travels for a living, as someone who books travel for others, I can tell you…even the expert gets nervous. Even the expert can lose sleep. Yep, even I just want to get to my hotel room already 🙂 Are you Travel Day Disney Vacation Ready?

Sleep:

Like most trips, before I go to bed that night, I am PACKED. I am fully, 100% packed. Even my toiletries are packed. I set my alarm, try to go to bed at a decent hour and sleep OR do I. It seems no matter how many times I do this, I always have a hard time sleeping. So much to the point that my husband knows…to just let me be on Travel Day. I usually am SO tired when I actually have to get up that I am basically a zombie trying to check all the boxes. Shower, check. Repack toiletries, make-up, pillows, check. Stay quiet, check. Make kids snacks/lunches, check. Load car, check.

The question is, why? Why can’t I sleep, I’m not nervous for anything. I might worry I forgot to pack something but with the amount of lists I make, not likely. I think I mostly have a hard time sleeping as I am afraid we will miss the plane. Perhaps, subconsciously, I am afraid my alarm won’t work and we will be late. Of course with 2 alarms going off, this is unlikely. I know I am not alone, who else can’t sleep and wakes up like a character from the night of the living dead??

The Airport:

So, we are up, bags are packed and we drive to the airport. We unload the car, get on the shuttle and get to the airport. After checking in like 100 bags we make our way to security. This is where I get a little nervous. Remember Nina, whose bag has the tablet, whose has the laptop, whose has food?? Are all the water bottles emptied? Anyone else? At this point I have learned to put all that stuff in the same bag. But this time I got stumped as they wanted me to remove ALL food. This was new. So all our packed snacks, kids lunches, other random food needed to be removed. I had to remove items from EVERY single bag. Ugh. Ok, done. Now we have to put it all back and make our way to our gate. Easy. I got this. We all go to the bathroom, fill up on fresh water and wait.

The Plane:

Boarding time! We board early as usual and wiped down our seats; the trays, the seatbelts and basically anything that we can. Then we wait and wait. Luckily our seats had individual screens, so the kids start watching. I got this!! The pilot alerts us that we are taking off soon. So I dig for my gum, check. Get the kids something to suck on, check. Then we take off. 4.5 hours later we are there. But we made 4 bathroom trips, 1 kid felt nauseous and gave me a minor panic attack on the plane and my husband slept through it all. He is SO lucky, lol. We land and RACE to the bathroom. We grab our bags and call our car service. The sigh of relief sets in. Now to get to the resort and in our room.

The Resort:

We are in our car driving down the highway and start seeing signs for Disney, you know those advertisements for what’s ahead. Then the kids start noticing buildings that they exclaim are Disney, but aren’t lol. Finally we see it, its Guardians of the Galaxy (Tower of Terror). Oh look, Carsland (the back side of Radiator Springs). Then the car turns into our Resort Parking area. It’s like the sight of heaven. We made it. The lack of sleep, the motion sickness kid, the potty breaks, the hunger, the nervousness…all for this. All my months of planning, organizing, researching and secrets…for this moment. And it all comes back to me, I am a child again. Disney is HOME, we are home. And to make it even better, our room was ready! They upgraded us to a nicer view and our room was ready. After unpacking…we can relax. Eat, Pool, Chill and Enjoy.

How about you? I know I am not alone. Who else can’t sleep or dreads the travel part and just wants on vacation already. And for the record, traveling solo is 100% easy for me, its the addition of the kids and husband that usually get me frazzled.

Mahalo for READING and FOLLOWING along – Nina

As usual I am a FREE Magical Vacation Planner (Travel Agent), Booking ALL Disney Destination Vacations (Disney & Beyond) – Contact me TODAY!!