If you’re looking to cover the most ground in your park days at Walt Disney World, Park Hopping may be the right move for you! This popular way to experience the parks is looking a bit different than it used to pre-pandemic, so today we’re sharing a quick guide to all things Park Hopping.
What is Park Hopping?
Park Hopping is when a guest visits more than one Walt Disney World theme park in one day. For example, if a guest starts in Magic Kingdom they can Park Hop to EPCOT, Disney’s Hollywood Studios, or Disney’s Animal Kingdom. This feature is only possible with a Walt Disney World Annual Pass, a standard ticket with the Park Hopper Option, or a standard ticket with the Park Hopper Plus Option.
For now, Park Hopping doesn’t begin until 2 PM each day, which means you’re visiting the initial park you made a theme park reservation for from the park open through 2 PM before you can move on to your next Park Hopping destination. Once you’ve scanned in at your initial park and the clock strikes 2 PM, guests have the freedom to Park Hop as they please. This means you could potentially visit all four parks in one day, just as long as you hustle once it hits 2 PM! The only Park Hopping restriction you may run into would be lack of availability for a park due to capacity. The My Disney Experience app offers the most up-to-date Park Hopper hours for reference.
What if I don’t start my day until after 2 PM?
If you haven’t scanned into your theme park reservation for the day and it’s after 2 PM, you still need to trek over to that park and scan in before you can Park Hop elsewhere. This is a piece of information that is often overlooked, but can make or break your Park Hopping experience!
Since modifying theme park reservations is still a bit tricky, it’s still likely in your best interest to visit the initial theme park, scan into the gate, then park hop to your next location. Instead you may find yourself theme park reservation-less if you cancel your existing one to try and make a theme park reservation at a park elsewhere! These Park Hopping practices may change back to the old methods in time, but for now this is the way of the Park Hopping world at Walt Disney World.
Reservations & Virtual Queues
A reservation for a dining experience or other pre-booked experience like Droid Depot or Savi’s Workshop does not guarantee you access into a park when you’re planning to Park Hop. A theme park reservation to a specific park is the only way to guarantee access through the gates, but with the help of the Park Hopper availability on My Disney Experience, you can keep an eye on things!
Virtual Queues are only available for guests with a theme park reservation to the park. Since Virtual Queue windows open at 7 AM and 1 PM daily, only guests with a theme park reservation for the eligible park will have the opportunity to attempt to join a boarding group. Right now, Walt Disney World is offering a virtual queue for Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind in EPCOT, so if you’re planning to grab a boarding group for this popular coaster you’ll need a theme park reservation to EPCOT!
Whether you’re experiencing all the Walt Disney World parks in a few short days or you’re looking to ride some of your favorite attractions again and again, Park Hopping is a great way to visit as many parks as possible. With the right ticket and an understanding of the new Park Hopper system, you can’t lose on your next Walt Disney World vacation!