Ratatouille Makes a Big Change
The next time you visit EPCOT, you’ll have a much better chance of riding Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure.
Also, we have an interesting change at an All-Star Resort to discuss in today’s DVC update.
Ratatouille Switches to Standby
In late September, Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance at Disney’s Hollywood Studios dropped its Boarding Group system.
Presumably, Disney didn’t want to operate two different virtual queues at the parks.
This form of lottery system seems fair, but it also antagonizes unlucky guests. So, twice as many virtual queues meant double the unhappy customers.
When Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure opened on October 1st, it utilized a virtual queuing system nearly identical to Boarding Groups.
Through the end of 2021, EPCOT guests got two shots at the prize of a virtual pass to ride the newest attraction at Walt Disney World.
The unlucky ones turned around and purchased Lightning Lane reservations instead, grudgingly paying more for the same experience.
However, we’ve entered the slower January period on the annual calendar. As wait times decrease across the parks, Disney has made a change.
Starting on January 10th, Ratatouille will employ a standby line queue rather than the virtual queuing system.
Yes, as of tomorrow, this form of lottery-based ride reservations is no more.
Park officials have indicated that virtual queues could return as needed, possibly during the busy Spring Break season.
For the time being, you’ll ride Ratatouille the same way as any other attraction.
You’ll get in line, wait your turn, and then shrink down to Remy’s size and start creating mayhem in a Parisian kitchen!
For DVC Points users, this change comes with a secondary benefit. You can and should arrive for Early Theme Park Entry at EPCOT.
Once you’re inside the park, head straight for Ratatouille! This strategy all but guarantees you ride once before the park gets crowded.
Also, you can avoid paying for a Lightning Lane reservation this way.
A New Delivery Method in Beta
Disney’s All-Star Music Resort has turned into an unlikely guinea pig for a potential new hotel delivery system.
A few days ago, guests noticed something unexpected right behind the M-U-S-I-C sign outside the hotel lobby.
Disney had quietly added digital storage lockers in this spot. Many of you will recognize them if you use Amazon delivery pickup or the like.
The system works as you’d expect. You order items and have them delivered to All-Star Music.
I’m talking about Instacart, Amazon Prime, Uber Eats, or the like. Your delivery person will store your items in these lockers.
When you’re ready to pick them up, you’ll receive a QR code or five-digit pin number to access your locker.
You either scan the code or enter your pin. Then, the storage locker opens, providing you access to your items.
I’ve used a service called Luxer One for this sort of storage. After a few years of service, I’d describe it as generally good, depending on the delivery person.
From Disney’s perspective, this new methodology solves a big problem. As the situation stands, guests pay outside services to deliver to Disney hotels.
Disney receives no money from these transactions. In fact, stuff like restaurant and grocery deliveries actually take away from the company’s potential revenue.
You’re spending money at other places rather than paying Disney for the same stuff. Also, hotel workers spend valuable time taking care of these deliveries.
Disney had previously implemented a $6 delivery fee to account for the staffing aspect, which angered some guests.
This new free method should please most people. As such, if the All-Star Music test works, I fully expect an expansion to the other Walt Disney World resorts.
My one suggestion here is that you should think carefully about food and grocery deliveries. You don’t want them sitting in a storage locker for long.