Single Riders to the front – and more TSPL experiences

Toy Story Playland is not yet even open for 10 days but with the first weekend and several buy summer season weekdays of regular operation under its belt its time to sum up the first opinions and report about the first adjustments that the operational team has introduced in response to what can only be called an overwhelming guest response to the new are of the Walt Disney Studios – one of which is a real positive surprise…

The impact of the new Toy Story Playland becomes obvious already prior to entering the park as the lines on the entrance gates prior to the official opening of the park have considerably grown. However, once the gates open a large number of guests still head to the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror and in particular Crush’s Coaster, where a massive line still forms and stays in place throughout the day. So the effect of reducing the line at Crush’s Coaster that some fans had hoped for hasn’t shown up.

Guests heading straight into Toy Story Playland at opening time though are rewarded with a relatively empty land giving them plenty of photo opportunities (while e.g. Rex will turn into something like a childrens’ climbing toy later during they day) and short lines. However, those short lines only last for a couple of minutes.

RC Racer usually seems to attract enough guests to create lines between 60 and 90 minutes. This also means that the queue line is not(!) fully used. Unfortunately at this time guests are asked to walk fast through the themed, winding race-track part of the queue outdoors and then queue for about 60 minutes in the station building in long switchbacks (sometimes also called “cattlepens”) where themeing is rather limited considering the amount of time spend here. It needs to be seen whether the operation will be adjusted to hold the queue in the more entertaining outdoor segment on days with good wheather in the future. However, at this time the cast members have other priorities as the ride still saw several longer lasting technical break downs during the past week (which can never be ruled out when finally starting regular operation on a new attraction).

Slinky Dog ZigZag Spin and Toy Soldiers Parachute Drop also had their share of technical problems but those usually did not last as long as at RC Racer. Slink Dog ZigZag Spin so far is sporting queue lines of 45 to 60 minutes frequently as well. The real surprise though are the wait times at Toy Soldiers Parachute Drop. Not only is the ride thanks to its interesting, kinetic ride experience attracting many guests just looking on, but there is also a clearly unexpected amount of guests wanting to go on the ride. The result are lines that are not only equal to the wait times at RC Racer but have repeatedly exceeded the wait times at RC Racer. Apparently during the past weeks a wait time of up to 120 minutes was reported at Toy Soldiers Parachute Drop (even so the long line seemed to have formed during one of the longer closures of RC Racer for technical reasons).

One of the reasons of the long lines at Toy Soldiers Parachute Drop is not only its popularity in itself but also the seating configuration: each of the six parachutes offers six seats, in two rows of three seats, with both rows placed back to back. Especially in the first days of operation frequently one seat per row was left empty due to the size of the guest groups. RC Racer offering five rows accomodating four guests each also sees some empty seats, but to a lesser extent. Therefore, cast members in the loading position at RC Racer have started to call out for single riders every now and then. The much larger number of empty seats at Toy Soldiers Parachute Drop combined with the (it seems under-estimated) popularity of the ride has prompted the operations team to opt for a more substantial solution: the introduction of a single rider line!

At this time photocopied, temporary DIN-A4 sheets are used as signs indicating where guests can line up for the single rider line. It needs to be awaited whether themed, durable signs will be put in and the single rider line will remain as a permanent fixture. Current wait times certainly would make it a reasonable decision. Toy Soldiers Parachute Drop is only the second attraction in the whole resort ever with a single rider line – the other attraction was Indiana Jones and the Temple of Peril in Disneyland Park (however, the latter has closed down the single rider line in the meantime again).

With the single rider line waiting times for Toy Soldiers Parachute Drop seem to be between 5 and 10 minutes most of the time (or in other words just very few ride cycles). When making decisions based on the displayed waiting times guests should take into consideration that those tend to be less accurate in the early weeks of operation until the park has been able to get more experience. There have been reports were the actual wait times were up to 50% shorter than claimed by the signage.

Did you already visit Toy Story Playland? If so let us know what you think – either here in the comments or over on the Mousekingdom Forum! Also: don’t miss to head over to the Mousekingdom Blog for a first person report of a visit to Toy Story Playland on the past weekend by Andy including many observations and his first review!

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