What if I told you there was a ride that really makes you feel like you're in a "Star Wars" movie? You can find this ride far, far away at the edge of the galaxy. The good news is that it's not really that far because it's at Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge in Disneyland. The adventure begins in a Resistance hiding spot deep in the forest and caves on the planet of Batuu. Welcome to Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance at Disneyland.
Now that there is no longer a virtual queue requirement, you'll need some tips for riding Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance at Disneyland without waiting in a long line. We have updated strategies to get you to the secret base.
If you're a "Star Wars" fan, you don't want to miss this immersive ride! Even if you're not a huge "Star Wars" fan, your mind will be blown. Popularity comes at a cost, and that cost is a long wait time. But we can help you find the shortest wait of the day! Here are our tips for skipping the lines for Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance at Disneyland.
How to Find the Shortest Wait for Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance at Disneyland
Before we get started, we need to say that this very complicated ride — utilizing four different ride systems — is highly volatile (not unlike the First Order), and it can break down. We call this ride the plan wrecker because it's so unpredictable and can really disrupt the Force (or our carefully laid-out plans for the day). But it's toadally worth the effort it takes to ride it. You just have to roll with it.
So listen up, recruits! You'll want to be as flexible as possible and be ready to act if things don't go as planned. Keep ALL these options in mind just in case your first method of choice does not work out. May the Force be with you always.
Hop in Line at Park Opening
One of the shortest wait times of the day is when the ride first opens, but you will need to follow orders to do this properly.
Arrive at Disneyland turnstiles at least 30-45 minutes before park opening (you'll have better luck if you are there an hour early and are one of the first people in the park). At the Hub, join the crowd forming near the Frontierland entrance ropes. Follow the instructions of your cast member leaders. At rope drop, they will send all recruits to the ride. It's usually through the Frontierland entrance to Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge. You are not supposed to run but people definitely run (be careful if the ground is wet).
Trust us ... if you head through Adventure Land, over the Pirates bridge to the (now open) Critter Country entrance, you need to be at the front of the crowd and very fast. Why? Since most people head through Frontierland, if a growing line extends outside the ride, you'll have to pass the ride entrance and search for the end of the line that extends toward Droid Depot. Actual details are subject to change, but be sure to follow the cast members and you will be fine.
Early Entry Tips for On-Site Hotel Guests
Rise of the Resistance is not open during Early Entry. However, people with Early Entry benefits have a shorter walk than others do. If you are staying at a Disneyland Resort hotel and are in the park during Early Entry, you can line up in Fantasyland near the gate to Frontierland to head to Rise at rope drop. It's located to the right of Red Rose Taverne, by the restrooms. At rope drop you can head through either entrance of Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge to get to Rise. The Frontierland (second) entrance, near Big Thunder Mountain, is the most popular and closest to the ride. Walkers from Fantasyland will hit the land entrance before or about the same time as the first rope drop runners coming through Frontierland but ahead of most of the crowd.
The Downside of Rope Drop
So here's the potential issue with the rope-drop plan: Sometimes the ride does not open right away. That happened to us on more than one occasion. We rushed all the way to the ride to find out that it was not open, and they were not letting us get in line. Boo!
If it is open but you are not at the front of the crowd, you may still have a long wait. We love the first hour of park opening when we can ride multiple other rides during the least crowded time of the day. We don't want to waste that time waiting for one ride to open up. We'd rather skip the lines for three or four rides early in the day and then come back and wait for Rise of the Resistance about an hour or two after park opening. Or we wait until later at night. That's why we prefer the next tip, riding at the end of the ride's opening hours.
Hop in Line Just Before the Ride Closes for the Day
Are you arriving late or staying until the evening? Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance at Disneyland has shorter hours than most other Disneyland attractions. Check the app or Disneyland site for the hours on the day of your visit. Let's say the ride closes at 9 p.m. Then hop in line just before 9 p.m. We tried it on a Sunday night at holiday time. The app said the ride closed at 9 p.m. and had a 60-minute wait. We hopped in line at 8:43 p.m. and were at the door for the first pre-show experience 17 minutes later at 9 p.m. We exited the ride at 9:22 p.m. so our combined wait time and ride experience came in under 40 minutes, which is significantly less than the posted wait time of 60 minutes to ride.
What can go wrong with this plan? The ride could break down at the end and you lose your chance to ride it. Something else in the park could delay you from making it in time, so if you go this route, give yourself a safe window of time to get there in the last hour. You might miss fireworks or other nighttime shows.
On a Saturday night when the ride closed at 9 p.m., we hopped in line at 8:42, waited 30 minutes and just as we were about to board, the ride went down. No ride for us, as they cleared the line and the ride did not reopen (being after hours). But we did get a multiple experiences pass, so we rode Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run instead. But this is why we only recommend the end-of-the-night plan for guests who have already ridden Rise of the Resistance.
Watch out for early closing times for this ride during some Disneyland After Dark party nights. Sometimes both this ride and Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge are closed for special events that take place outside of party hours. For example, for Throwback Night and Star Wars Nite, Rise of the Resistance closes at 7:30 p.m., which is 30 minutes before the park closes those nights. The land is open for Star Wars Nite. The ride may reopen, however, Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance is subject to availability, which may vary and is not guaranteed, throughout the event. The bottom line is not to purchase an After Dark event with the expectation of getting to ride Rise with a short wait. If it hoppens, great!
Look for Surprise Extended Hours
A couple of nights when we visited, we were surprised by the ride's extended hours. Earlier in the evening, the ride was listed as closing at 8 p.m. We checked the Disneyland app at 8:01 p.m. to see if the ride was listed as closed, and it turns out the app showed that the ride was open until 9 p.m. We asked a cast member who told us the closing time can get extended. Don't count on that, but if you missed riding the ride during the day and think it's closed, it's worth checking again. Or maybe you want to ride a second time. You might get lucky! And since other people aren't planning on riding that late, the line should be manageable.
Ride During the Parade
While we can see wait times reach 90 minutes throughout the day, during the parade the wait times may drop to 50 minutes. They'll shoot back up after the parade watchers head to the ride. So take the hopportunity to ride while the parade is still running for one of the shortest waits of the day. Most days there are two parade showtimes (often 3:30 and 6:30 p.m.), giving you a chance to see the parade and ride Rise during the other parade.
Hop in Line Just After the Ride Reopens After a Closure
Since Rise is subject to breakdowns, some people will leave the line when the ride breaks down, shortening the wait for others once it comes back up. You never know when it will come up, but being down for an hour is common. If you hoppen to be in the area as the ride reopens, hop in line.
This is harder to predict, of course. Also, there could be a surge of people accessing the Lightning Lane, which can slow down the movement of the standby line. Keep in mind that wait times can be inflated. Our actual waits have usually been less than the posted wait time. However, a breakdown while you are in line can change that. Recently, even with a breakdown, our wait was shorter than posted, but that may be due to a lot of people ahead of us leaving the line.
Here's how to assess the line. If the line is not visible from the outside and mostly in the building, the line is pretty short. Even if it is weaving outside but still contained in the official outside queue area, it's manageable. But if the line leaves the official queue area and extends down the path toward Critter Country, it's likely more time than you want to spend waiting. Use a different strategy.
Buy Your Way In to Rise of the Resistance at Disneyland
Here is the newest way to skip the line, but it will cost you. You can purchase an individual Lightning Lane (LL) selection for Rise of the Resistance in the Disneyland app. It's usually $25-30 per person. You'll receive a one-hour window during which you can use the Lightning Lane to skip the standby line. You can read up on individual Lightning Lanes in our guide to Genie+ at Disneyland.
What could go wrong? As you may have guessed, this ride could break down in your reservation window. So what hoppens? If the ride breaks down and you aren't able to use your Lightning Lane selection as scheduled, you'll see a change to your plan in the app. The time constraints get lifted and you can use your individual Lightning Lane selection any time that day until the ride closes for the night. That part is convenient. If there is a breakdown and you are unable to ride before you need to leave the park that day, your unused individual Lightning Lane reservations will be automatically refunded to your credit card in two to five days.
When this ride breaks down and you have an individual Lightning Lane for it, the purchase limitation of two individual Lightning Lane selections per person per day is lifted, allowing you to purchase a third ride if you wanted to. So if you were looking to purchase an individual Lightning Lane for Mickey & Minnie's Runaway Railway and for Radiator Springs Racers, you can purchase both of them instead of just one of them. Without a Rise breakdown, you would have to choose just one of them to buy.
Other Potential Ways to Access the Line
There is another way to access the line that applies to limited guests.
Disability Access Service (DAS)
If you have someone in your group who has disabilities that prevent them from waiting in a standard queue, you may qualify to use the Disneyland Disability Access Service. Our DAS post has all the details on how to sign up. If you use DAS, you can get a return time for Rise of the Resistance. You will still wait to ride, but you can wait in an alternate location. Your return time does not expire until the ride closes for the day or you use it, whichever comes first. You can only reserve this ride after entering the park that day. It is not an available choice for DAS Advance (two rides you may reserve before you arrive).
Are you excited to potentially ride Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance at Disneyland? Prepare to have your mind blown! You'll want a multi-day ticket for multiple chances to join. Good news! Your favorite froggy friends have discount multi-day Disneyland Resort tickets and hotel bookings to save you some green.