Last update December 18th 2016 More important than what date to visit Disneyland is what time to visit Disneyland. Disneyland opens at 8am most days, you should be waiting at the gate at 7:55. The best way to get a lot done in Disneyland is to get there in the morning EARLY and power through as many attractions as you can. Most times you will be able to get more attractions done the first two hours of the morning than you will the rest of the day combined.
If you have a three day or more park ticket, ticket with “bonus” status, or CityPass Ticket, you also get a Magic Morning ticket that allows for you to enter Disneyland park an hour before it’s official opening.
Magic Morning is available on Tuesday, Thursday or Saturday.
The attractions included in Magic Morning are mostly in Tomorrowland and Fantasyland. Magic Morning is the perfect time to knock out all of Fantasyland or to ride Space Mountain or Star Tours many times. I have experienced times in the past where I have just stayed on attractions during Magic Morning more than five times in a row.
Be sure to show up to the entrance to Disneyland about an hour and fifteen minutes before the official opening time.
While you are waiting in line at Disneyland often times people need things to do. Especially if you hit a long long line, which you undoubtedly will.
We love both of these books that help us to pass the time as we wait in Disneyland’s lines.
My personal favorite book is Steven Barrett’s Guide to Disneyland’s Hidden Mickeys. Inside of the book you will find information on the camouflaged images of the Mickey Mouse the Walt Disney Imagineers hid throughout Disneyland as they were building it. (Great read!) Purchase it here.
Also checkout Lots to Do in Line: Disneyland Edition, which provides activities for everyone to do in each specific line. The goal of the book is to keep everyone in the group interested while pointing our the specific details of the different parts of the park. Purchase the book here.
Disneyland has launched their own mobile app that provides wait times, browse park maps, and locate characters in the park.
This app is now a necessary addition for planning out your day in the park. It makes it easy to check the official wait time for an attraction all the way across the park from you. This is also the most accurate source for information on where to find characters at Disneyland.
Did you know that you can access this site during your Disneyland vacation? MickeyVisit.com works on all smartphones (iPhone, Blackberry, Android…) making it easy for you to access information about events happening at the parks, dining reviews, and tips about touring the parks.
The site works wonderfully if you can access the internet on your phone. Be sure to use MickeyVisit.com in the parks.
Perhaps the easiest way to bring us on along on your trip is to add us to your phone’s home screen.
Cutting the Lines Legally
Every once in awhile, a teenager or other park guest will attempt to cut the lines and hop onto the attraction in front of you, this is obviously not allowed. But, there are a three ‘legal’ ways to jump the line and save a ton of time while doing so.
The Disneyland FastPass system is essentially a way to reserve access to shorter lines for Disneyland’s most popular attractions. This service is free of charge and only requires your ticket.
Also be sure to checkout the official Disneyland and Disney California Adventure social accounts designed to help guests in the parks. These accounts give out information and are a direct link to Disneyland Guest Relations. Ask them a question and they will quickly respond.
These social accounts can be very useful–find more information regarding them here.
Using SingleRider Pass
What is SingleRider?
Single Rider is basically a way to jump the lines of the best attractions at Disneyland. Your party is split up and put into individual ride cars for the attraction. This is the only downside to using the SingleRider line.
Why was it created?
Disney created the single rider line in order to make sure that every time they sent a ride vehicle into an attraction, it would have every seat filled. Because people often go to Disneyland in large groups, the numbers don’t always match the amount of people that fit into a ride vehicle. Therefore, Disneyland would fill up the ride vehicles with extra people or single riders that have are in the single rider line.
How to Use it?
Meet the Cast Member at the front of the attraction entrance and request to use SingleRider for the attraction. They will more times than not walk you over to the exit of the attraction or gesture to the SingleRider entrance. They’ll give each person a card then you walk to be seated on the attraction.
SingleRider is offered here:
Splash Mountain (Suggested-almost walk on)
Indiana Jones and the Temple of the Forbidden Eye (Suggested-Walk On)
Disney California Adventure
California Screamin’ (Suggested-Sometimes the wait is long. If the wait for the attraction is under 15 minutes, just get in line.)
Soarin’ Over California (NOT Suggested. Will waste lots of time. DO NOT USE! Most times the standby line is takes the equal amount of time. The only time to use SingleRider here is when the standby line is upwards of an hour and a half.)
Grizzly River Run (Highly Suggested On a Hot Day- The line for this attraction is very long on hot summer days.)
Goofy’s Sky School (Regular line isn’t usually that long.)
Radiator Springs Racers (Highly Suggested-This Line is SOOOO Long Without a Single Rider pass. Even with a Single Rider pass it can take upwards of forty minutes.)
Using the VIP Disneyland Tour Guides
The Disneyland VIP Tour Guides are an expensive service that completely changes the Disneyland planning process for the better. It relieves all stress by employing a Disneyland Cast Member to help you plan your vacation and escort you throughout your time at the resort. If you think that you would be interested in using the Disneyland VIP Tour Guide, see our full review on what to expect and what they include.
Even if you don’t plan on using the VIP Tour Guides, it is pretty fun to dream about the amazing service they provide.