Thoughts on Star Wars: Galaxys Edge Extra Magic Hours
Disney have announced extra, Extra Magic hours for Hollywood Studios, Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom throughout September 2019.
The focus here will be on Hollywood Studios, and Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge.
I love Star Wars, and I'm super excited for Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge. Although, I have no desire to be waiting hours and hours for the duration on and shortly after opening. I saw how crazy Pandora: The World Of Avatar was at Animal Kingdom, and I cannot imagine this will be any less crazy.
We planned our 2020 trip in a way where I get to see it relatively soon, but hopefully after the crowds have died down a little. We planned our September 2019 trip for one final semi-peaceful Disney World trip before the Star Wars madness begins.
Then Disney dropped the bombshell announcing it would open earlier than expected at the end of August, 2019.
As I said, I love Star Wars, and I'm very excited for Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge, but now my semi-peaceful September 2019 trip just got a lot more crowded. Some are speculating that crowd numbers are being overhyped, especially because the major attraction – Rise Of The Resistance – isn't opening until the end of the year, but we'll only know when opening day hits.
Extra Magic Hours
In summary, there will be Extra Magic Hours every day between 6 - 9 am at Hollywood Studios starting September 1, 2019 until November 2, 2019. This means that for every guest staying in any Disney World Resort hotel can get into Hollywood Studios at 6am every single day.
We're not sure if Disney are going to extend this past November 2, but overall, if you're staying at a Disney World resort hotel (like we do), this is fantastic. While Extra Magic Hours usually isn't much quieter these days, an extra hour or so in the park is always welcome (because let's face it, we've paid the premium for it staying on-site). With the new hours, guests will get 3 hours of Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge access every morning throughout September.
While I am on the side of excitement on this announcement, especially as overall it seems Disney want to be cutting back on things, I know some people, especially our readers, are left unsatisfied.
Through September, the reality will be if you're not there at 6am you are likely going to face hours of waiting just to get into the land, let alone actually doing anything in there. Families with small children getting up before 5am to to get at the parks in time for opening will be tricky. Personally, I can happily get up at the crack of dawn, and will be for some mornings of our September trip to experience this. But, it will be tough for some.
Another issue is whether the resort food courts will be open for food and coffee that early. It's not clear if they are, but I don't think Disney have ever extended opening hours of the food courts before (outside of hurricanes), but I'm hoping they will.
The reality of this situation that if you wanted to see Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge in the first month or so it opens, you have to stay on-site. Which makes sense from a business standpoint. Disney have spent a reported $1billion building this land, and they want to make that money back. I know many people like us already have these trips planned and the early opening of Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge has sent plans a little haywire, but if you're staying on-site it's not a real issue. If you're staying off-site, it's going to be really hard to enjoy it because by the time 9am comes when it opens to the public, it's already going to be completely packed. Whether the solution to book a single Disney hotel night just to get one 6am start to see it will be up to you, and that's what Disney are obviously trying to push here.
I'm looking forward to Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge, and even though I didn't plan to be there within the first couple weeks of it opening, it'll be an experience. Plus I'll get to build my lightsaber a little earlier than originally planned.