Even though Cars Land opened almost two years ago, the crowds can still be pretty intense, especially for this new land’s centerpiece attraction, Radiator Springs Racers.
Here are three tips to reduce your wait.
Tip #1: Use FastPass (duh!)
This may seem obvious, but using the FastPass system is a good way to reduce your wait on this ride. The trick, however, is that because the attraction is still so popular, FastPass tickets can run out very early in the day. So in order to take advantage of this tip, you’ll need to get in line for the FastPass machines no later than about 40 or 50 minutes after the park opens. You might get away with later than this on days of very low attendance, but why push your luck?
Another less-obvious point here is that the lines can start out very long just to get a FastPass ticket, with the line forming near the Carthay Circle Theater even before the park has opened for the day. After about 30 or 40 minutes though, the line to get FastPasses will normally start to die down. As a result, if you’re using RideMax to plan your visit, you may find that the plan doesn’t have you get in line for the FastPass tickets until after you’ve already visited another attraction, while you wait for the FastPass line to die down a bit here.
Tip #2: Use the Single Rider Line
A perhaps less well-known fact is that Radiator Springs Racers offers a separate “single rider” line. For those unfamiliar with the single rider concept, you can use this line to avoid most of the wait, but the cost is that your party will most likely be split up, so that you ride in separate vehicles. The picture above shows the entrance to the single rider line, which is just to the left of the main attraction entrance.
The single rider line likely won’t be an option for you if you have very young children who would be uncomfortable riding with strangers. But for older children and adults, it offers a very viable alternative to standing in a very long standby line. We’ve sometimes found ourselves even lucky enough to either ride in the same vehicle with someone else in our party, or — and this is even more fun — racing against someone in our group who happened to be seated in the car we “competed” with as part of the ride experience.
Tip #3: Arrive Early on a Tuesday, Thursday, or Saturday
You may have read this tip and thought, “OK, I can see the logic in arriving early, but what is so special about Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday?”
Disney offers “Extra Magic Hours” (EMH) to its hotel guests, where they are allowed to enter DCA one hour before the “official” park opening time. EMH for DCA takes place on Sundays, Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. So even if you arrive early on one of these days of the week hoping to beat the rush to Radiator Springs Racers, you’ll find hotel guests already in the park, many (most?) of which will try to visit RSR during the EMH hour, making for a long line right at park opening time.
One common misconception here is that park-hopper “bonus” ticket holders sometimes think that their one-day “Magic Morning” privileges apply to DCA — they don’t. Magic Morning is ONLY available for use at Disneyland. If you want access to DCA’s EMH, you’ll need to stay at one of the Disney hotels.
You know I have to save something for subscribers, so if you’re a RideMax subscriber, please also be sure to check out our “Tips & Hints” pages within RideMax itself, where we give some very detailed advice — complete with pictures — regarding this particular tip, including where to position yourself once inside the park. That advice can help you further beat the crowds to Radiator Springs Racers right at opening time.
For those of you who have visited DCA since Cars Land opened, what did you think? Do you like the new attractions? What is your favorite?
Leave your thoughts in the comments below!