I went to Galaxy’s Edge on opening day and here is what to expect if you go during the early first few days. First of all, be prepared to be amazed at all of the intricate details of the land. (I posted a link to my YouTube video of my stroll through the land at the end of this blog.) This land is big, but it seems even bigger than it is. They not only made mountains, they used our sense of depth perception to make it look like the mountains go on for miles. If you are only caught up in the close details, which are also very intricately designed, you may not even notice. You can’t see the rest of Hollywood Studios once inside the land, so you truly are transported to another world.
Second, be prepared to wait. The wait to get into the land is not that bad. During the first few days the park will open to all guests at 6 AM. A lot of people are showing up at that time and there are major lines to get through parking, security, etc. If you can be there early enough to get in the front part of that, go for it. I wasn’t able to get there that early because I had to drop my daughter off at the airport in Sanford at 6 AM. So, let me tell you how it went down for Marty, my wife, and me.
Marty used the My Disney Experience app to join up with a “boarding party” while I was driving us to the park. Boarding parties are what Disney is using to allow people into the land once it reaches capacity (see my photos of the handout they gave us in the park for instructions). You can join a boarding party before you get to the park. Once they are ready for your boarding party to enter the park, they will send you a notification through the app. You then have two hours to come to the entrance of Galaxy’s Edge to enter the land. Be sure you have updated your app and have notifications turned on. You would not want to miss that notification. There are also several electronic signs in Hollywood Studios showing which parties are boarding and the expected time you will be allowed to enter if you are just joining a boarding party.
So, we arrived to the park around 7 AM and I was pleasantly surprised to find that there was no traffic jam at the entrance to the parking lot. We did not have to wait on a single car in front of us. I actually started thinking that something was wrong. We then parked in Mickey 313 which, if you are familiar with the parking lot, is unreal because it is close enough to walk to the entrance without taking the tram. We really began thinking something was wrong at that point. We then got to the bag check and, again, no wait. We went in the park and it didn’t appear to be that crowded. We found the sign that shows which boarding parties they are taking. We were party 65 and they were currently boarding parties 5-12. We thought it was going to be a while so we decided to stand in line for the posted 50 minute wait for Slinky Dog Dash. We didn’t time it, but it seemed like it only took about 30 minutes. From there, we noticed Star Tours was basically a walk on ride, though it said it had a 5 minute wait. Then we decided to get some breakfast, which is really lacking in options in Hollywood Studios. As we were eating we were pondering where everyone was on the opening day.
About 9:20 AM I got the notification on my app that our boarding party could enter. That is when we found were everyone was hiding. There were a lot of people in Batuu. However, it wasn’t so bad that you couldn’t move around. This is the point, however, where the real waiting begins. There were queue lines for everything, even getting into the gift shops. The wait for Smuggler’s run had been 300 minutes at one time that morning, but was 220 minutes when we entered. There had been a single rider line, but that was temporarily closed when we got there. Since we were exhausted from getting up at 3:45 AM to get to the airport on time, we only took a stroll around the land and filmed it for you. I hope you enjoy the video. (I posted a link to it rather than embedding it into the blog. YouTube doesn’t give us credit for views when people watch embedded videos.)