What Are the Do’s and Don’ts of Standing in Line at Disney?

You’ll spend plenty of time standing in line when you’re at a Disney theme park. It’s unavoidable at any theme park on the planet.

I mean, even if you spring for the VIP Tour, you’ll only enter the Lightning Lane most of the time rather than skip to the front.

So, you’ll pass plenty of time in line no matter what. As such, you’d better know how to handle your downtime.

Here are the do’s and don’ts of standing in line at Disney theme parks.

theme park

Photo: Disneyplanning.com

Do: People-watch

You’ll discover so much activity while you’re standing in line for a theme park attraction.

At many attractions, you can watch other guests ride the same thing you’re about to experience.

Disney Vacation Club

Photo: Disney Vacation Club

You can also appreciate the excitement of others as they anticipate the upcoming ride.

Kids are particularly great for this, as they’re overflowing with joy during Disney trips.

Drink it all in and bask in the fact that you’re all in this together!

Disney balloons

Photo: Disney

Don’t: Stand So Close to Me

Let me be clear. Do NOT be a neck-breather. Personal space has always been a thing, whether you knew it before the pandemic or not.

We’re now in the post-social distancing era. Still, many people got used to having a lot of space, and they’re struggling to adjust to the new normal.

Please be respectful of these people rather than trying to trigger them.

If a sneeze or a cough would get germs on them, you’re standing too close. It’s not cool. Sting had this one right all the way back in the 1980s.

crowds

Do: Befriend People Near You

Some of my happiest memories at Disney theme parks happened because I made small talk with other guests.

I’m an introvert by nature, but I learned something from my father-in-law during my first marriage.

Magic Kingdom Walk

(Caitie McCabe, photographer)

He could sit down absolutely anywhere and make a friend. It was remarkable. So, I adopted that behavior for myself.

Now, when I notice someone wearing a team jersey of a sport I know, I’ll talk to them.

DisneySprings

Credit: Disney

Once, I started talking about an NFL football player with someone who busted up. It was a college teammate who still golfed with that player frequently!

Similarly, I’ll talk to video game fans, TV show fans, or anybody else I notice wearing something that opens up an avenue for conversation.

spirit jersey

Photo: Disney Springs

Often, people are really happy to have their passions acknowledged. It makes them feel seen.

Now, if someone gives off a strong “stranger danger!” vibe when you engage, it’s best to drop the attempt.

Credit: Disney

You’ll know when someone wants to talk vs. being left alone.

Don’t: Try to Cheat the System

Are you thinking about holding a place in line for someone? Have you considered hopping a chain to get 20 people ahead in line?

EPCOT

Please suppress those dark, antisocial thoughts. There’s a system in place for theme park lines, and we should all respect it.

If members of your party aren’t ready to get in line, either wait for them or be honest that you’ll ride before them.

lines

Do: Re-Apply Sunscreen

This one’s more of a general piece of advice than a specific one. You’ll have a few tasks to maintain throughout your park visit.

I’m talking about wearing sunscreen, charging your phone, and the like.

sunscreen

Photo: Coppertone

You’ll have plenty of time while standing in line to be productive. So why wouldn’t you use it to ensure that you’ll have a great time later as well?

You don’t want to mess up Future You’s day by having a sunburn or a dead phone, right?

phone

Photo: Disney

Don’t: Ignore Your Kids

You’d be shocked how many parents forget that they’re visiting Disney for their children’s entertainment!

Some parents enter a kind of “WIN NOW!” mode when they’re at the parks. They want to see and do everything and grow laser-focused on the process.

Christian Bale at Disneyland

Photo Credit: The Mega Agency

So, they zone out a bit and start ignoring their kids. Naturally, this leaves the children bored and desperate for attention.

Hey, what do kids do when they seek attention? That’s right! They act out!

airport

Photo: Family Veldman/Getty Images

Actually, that’s the best-case scenario. Some don’t throw a tantrum. They wander instead…and that can go from zero to terrifying in the blink of an eye.

Please don’t ignore your children at the parks! It’s irritating for others at best and potentially dangerous at worst.

Child Safety at Disney

Photo: Disney

Do: Plan the next thing

When the parks introduced Disney Genie, planning became more straightforward than ever at Disney parks.

However, you will need to study your phone often to plan your next move.

(Matt Stroshane, photographer)

That’s doubly true if you purchased Disney Genie+. You can schedule your next reservation while standing in line for your current one.

Similarly, you may want to eat later. If so, you should start a mobile order.

MagicMobile

Photo: Disney

Do not worry. Disney won’t start preparing the food until you signal you’re ready. So, there’s no reason to delay.

Don’t: Loudly Complain about Standing in Line

you know what This one doesn’t merely apply to Disney theme parks. It’s more of a universal thing.

lines

I don’t care if you’re standing in line at the movie theater or the DMV or the orthodontist.

The other people in line don’t want to hear about what a personal inconvenience this is to you.

Unless you’re currently hours away from a breakthrough in cold fusion, you’re not doing anything more important than anyone else.

EPCOT

If everyone else can wait without complaining constantly, so can you.

Thu: Pay Attention

Disney theming doesn’t start once you’re at the attraction. Instead, the line queues often display some of the most important details about the ride.

Rise of the Resistance Cue

Here’s an example of the impeccable theming at Frozen Ever After. You’ll never notice Oaken and all his items up for sale if you’re not paying attention!

Disney line queues feature everything from murder mysteries (Haunted Mansion) to Pixie Dust magic (Peter Pan’s Flight) to car design (Test Track).

  Photo: Disney

Photo: Disney

You’ll miss a lot if you’re watching TikToks rather than looking at your surroundings!

Don’t: Yell at Cast Members

Sometimes, a line stops moving at Disney. You never know what the cause is, and you should keep that in mind.

haunted mansion

Photo: Disney

For example, on Haunted Mansion, some handicapped guests cannot disembark unless the Omnimover briefly stops to give them the necessary time.

In other instances, a safety mechanism may have triggered a 101 error code, which shuts down the ride…to SAVE YOUR LIFE!

Cast Members

Photo: Disney

So, no matter how irritated you feel about the length of time you’re standing in line, PLEASE don’t yell at the cast members.

These are the kindest people who deserve your appreciation and respect. So, they really can’t do anything about it anyway.

Cast Members

Photo: Walt Disney World Cast and Community

You’re just yelling at somebody else to make yourself feel better, which isn’t the kind of person any of us want to be.

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