The force apparently is strong with Disney’s new Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge attraction. The theme park giant announced Thursday that the new land will open ahead of schedule: May 31 at Disneyland in southern California and Aug. 29 at Disney World in Orlando.
However, only one of the two cutting-edge rides will be available when the Disneyland location opens in May, and guests will need reservations if visiting May 31-June 23.
Visitors booking rooms at one of Disneyland’s three on-property hotels will automatically get reservations. Reservations are needed in addition to a park admission ticket.
The theme park made the announcement Thursday on the Disney Park’s blog.
How to visit Disneyland’s Star Wars: Galaxy Edge
Each guest planning to visit Galaxy’s Edge must have a reservation, officials said. There is no charge for reservations.
Supply will be limited, and Disney did not say how many reservations would be issued each day. But it’s likely that those who get into the sprawling 14-acre land won’t feel exceptionally crowded so everyone can have the kind of experience carefully planned by Imagineers.
What you can ride on opening day
Take a sneak peak into Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, opening this summer at Disneyland.
Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run, in which six people will fly the iconic Han Solo ship on a daring mission, will be open on Day One.
The more ambitious Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance, in which guests are captured and taken aboard a hostile star destroyer, will open as part of Phase Two later this year, officials announced.
Park officials previously revealed the restaurants, shops and Disneyland’s one and only cocktail bar (Oga’s Cantina).
Disney did not reveal what other features would not open until Phase Two, saying in a release only that it wanted to allow guests in sooner to experience the not-quite-finished land.
How will Disneyland handle the crowds?
Demand for the new Star Wars land is expected to be overwhelming. The temporary (as of now) reservations system partially addresses that.
Crowds are a concern because Galaxy’s Edge is an immersive experience where visitors will interact with droids and cast members dressed as Star Wars characters. Using the Play Disney Parks app, guests may join either the First Order or the Resistance, aid a smuggler and access other secrets planted around the Black Spire Outpost.
Some fans and insiders are wondering whether Disney may start charging for its skip-the-line Fastpass.
In January, Disney allowed certain high-end guests at Disney World to purchase three Fastpasses for $50. At Disneyland Paris, guests may buy a Star Wars package for 59 euros ($67) that includes Fastpasses to Hyperspace Mountain and Star Tours.
It begs the question: Will Disney ask parkgoers to pay above and beyond admission for an exclusive Fastpass to Galaxy’s Edge? If so, will it lead to a rise of guest resistance, particularly among those who believe the theme park shouldn’t favor those with deep pockets?
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