A guide to conquering Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance

January 17, 2020

So, you’re hoping to ride Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance on your next Disney trip, huh? If you’ve taken to Twitter recently, you’ve probably seen a lot of discussion about the ever-evolving boarding pass system Disney has implemented for this ride. Many guests are angry about not getting in the virtual queue and are confused by all the changes constantly being made to the system. 


Although frustrating, Disney has worked out a lot of the bugs of the boarding pass system over the past few weeks. We are here to break down how the system currently works and to give you tips on how to better your chances of getting on this amazing new ride.

Inside Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance | © Evelyn Morehead


Disney’s Hollywood Studios


At this time, Disney’s Hollywood Studios in Walt Disney World is utilizing a virtual queue in its every day operation. In order to join the virtual queue, guests must be scanned into the park (meaning they have gone through the touchpoints and activated their park ticket for the day). Once in the park, guests can either use the “My Disney Experience” app on their smartphone or see a member of the Guest Experience Team to enter a boarding group. You can only enter a boarding group once the park is officially open (not during Extra Magic Hours). So, if you have scanned into the park and are being held on Hollywood Blvd, you cannot join a boarding group until the moment park officially opens. Announcements will be played in the park and cast members are around to assist so that you know when you can board.


Every guest in the party must be in the boarding group in order to experience the attraction. Disney is currently also offering backup boarding groups, which are boarded the same way. However, these groups are not guaranteed to ride and are only called if all the other boarding groups ride before the park closes. This depends on how often and for how long Rise of the Resistance breaks down throughout the day. Even if you assigned to a boarding group that is not a backup one, ride access is not guaranteed, especially if you are in one of the later boarding groups. 


So, if you want to truly guarantee that you will get on the ride, we recommend that you get to Disney’s Hollywood Studios at least 30 minutes to an hour before the park opens. This way, you have the best bet of getting into the park before it opens so that you are scanned in by the time you are allowed to enter the virtual queue. But, don’t panic if you find yourself getting to the park soon after it opens. You will still likely get in a boarding group, especially as Walt Disney World enters its off season. (But getting there before park open is still strongly recommended!!!)



Rise of the Resistance is set to open on Jan. 17 at Disneyland, and Disney plans to implement a virtual queue system like the one seen currently at Walt Disney World. As far as we know, the system will work exactly the same as it does in Disney’s Hollywood Studios (please read above for more information). Guests can join a boarding group on the Disneyland app or at select locations throughout the park. It is expected that Rise of the Resistance will draw big crowds at Disneyland just as it has been at Walt Disney World, so do try to arrive before park open if you wish to experience the attraction.


Inside Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance | © Evelyn Morehead


I was lucky enough to score a boarding group a few weeks ago to ride Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, and I can assure you it is worth ALL the hype. I arrived at the gates at about 4:30 am when park opened at 7 am (no … I did not need to get there that early, but I was stressed OKAY). We were let through the touchpoints at around 6:30 am and were held on Hollywood Blvd. Right at 7 am, I refreshed the “My Disney Experience” app and joined boarding group 22! I was able to ride Slinky Dog Dash and stroll around for a bit before my boarding group was called. 


There has been a lot of debate on the effectiveness of the virtual queue system. Many are upset that they have to get up early if they want a chance of riding Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance. I personally really like the boarding group situation. I think it’s a great alternative to crazy ten hour long lines, which would be guest recovery nightmares, as the ride usually goes down at least once a day. You get to use the time you would have spent in line enjoying the rest of the park. So while, yes, the virtual queue is still working out some kinks, I think it will prove as good system in the end. 


So, if you are headed to Walt Disney World or Disneyland soon to ride Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance, hopefully this guide will help you plan your day. May the force be with you and til’ the spire!




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