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Warning: Disney is Changing its Protocol for Ride Breakdowns

Warning: Disney is Changing its Protocol for Ride Breakdowns

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Do you have a Disney trip planned? This new protocol could affect your day if you experience a ride breakdown.

When Rides Break Down

Credit: KtP

A Disney vacation has the potential to be one of the most magical experiences on Earth. But, every now and then things go wrong.

One of the most unmagical experiences is waiting and waiting for an attraction only to get near the front and find something undesirable has happened. The attraction has gone down. Be sure you follow these tips for what to do when a ride stops or goes down.

Apparently, guests aren’t the only ones who can have melt downs in Disney World. The rides have melt downs of their own from time to time.

Credit: Monica

This can be especially true for older coasters like Space Mountain. On the flip side, it also seems to strike newer trackless rides such as Rise of the Resistance and Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure with relative frequency.

So, what are you to do when this occurs? Sources say Disney is changing your options.

The Old Way

fast passes returning disney world
Credit: Kenny the Pirate

Typically when a ride goes down for an undetermined time at Disney, guests are notified that the ride has temporarily stopped. They are then given the option of waiting in their places or exiting the queue.

If you selected the “exit” option, typically a Cast Member would direct you to another Cast Member near the attraction’s entrance or exit. This Cast Member would typically greet you with an iPad.

The magical Cast Member would then scan your Magic Band and provide you with an Anytime Experience pass for the attraction that you could redeem upon the reopening of the ride. This was known as a Recovery Pass.


You could go enjoy the park elsewhere, and when the attraction reopened, you could use the FastPass line, now called the Lightning Lane, to renter the attraction. It was a pretty easy process.

However, inside sources report that this practice is no more!

The New Protocol

Credit: Jamie F

Now, when a ride breaks down, guests will still be given the option to stay in the queue for the attraction or exit the line. However, exiting will be a different experience.

Disney is reportedly no longer offering guest recovery passes unless they are evacuated from the attraction or the queue. This means that once you exit, if the ride comes back, you will have to wait in line all over again.

Again, if guests are evacuated, those guests will be offered a recovery pass. But if Cast members provide the option of remaining in the queue or exiting, guests exiting will not receive a pass.

Credit: Jamie F

Inside sources say Disney is no longer offering guest recovery passes unless they are evacuated from the attraction or the queue

Time will tell how long this protocol lasts. But, be prepared for it if you have a trip in the new future.

What do you think about this jarring new development? Let us know in the comments below or on Facebook.

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Thursday 21st of July 2022

Same experience - waited in line for 40 minutes, ROTR breaks down - waiting another 60 minutes and left. Went to the front office and they did not comp for wasting 2 hours of my day at a premium ticket price. Customer service is gone. Years ago, Disney always took care of the customer. Horrible experience now.


Wednesday 20th of October 2021

Erin, it's time for all DVC members to band together and protect Disney's original values (basically what all of us DVC members bought into).

We, as a group, likely own more of Disney's assets than does the top stockholder, yet we have no say in the protection of our assets/investment.

This needs to change. We need voting rights to protect our assets from being destroyed by poor management.

Hopefully one of our DVC members understands the SEC rules on this.....

Erin Moore

Wednesday 20th of October 2021

They were doing this the beginning of September already... was disappointed in several changes. Kind of sealed the deal we won't be expanding our dvc points and possibly selling our existing points. Genie sounds like a money grab on top of an incredibly expensive vacation already. Ready to move onto different vacations instead.

Linda Costello

Wednesday 20th of October 2021

You know Melissa, neither have I. I've only been offered a now defunct fast pass for any other ride in that particular park.


Wednesday 20th of October 2021

Land or World? At Land this is how it has always been. You didn't get a pass unless you were already in a row waiting to board. We had 1 time that Peter Pan went down where they were announcing they stay or exit options but we were at a place in the queue that we literally couldn't move from without a lot of others moving as well. No one that left got a pass no one that left expected a pass. Only once they decided it wasn't coming back online and they removed everyone from the line did the passes come out, but that was the only time I remember getting a pass in the line itself.


Saturday 23rd of October 2021

This is for Walt Disney World.

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