Walt Disney World’s newest ride is not only their most popular ride, but it can also be the hardest to get on right now! Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance in Disney World’s Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge uses an entirely different system than any of Disney World’s other attractions, so you’ll need to essentially “reserve” a spot to ride it. Disney calls it a “Virtual Queue” now, but you’ll also hear it referred to as a “boarding group” or “boarding pass”. As of right now, you will have to have a boarding group in order to ride the attraction (even if you use the Disability Access Service), and you’ll have to go through the Virtual Queue process in order to (hopefully) get a boarding group assigned to your party.
These boarding groups are given out at random and are on a first-come-first-serve basis, so everyone will have an equal chance at getting one. During one of our visits, we received group 16 and the party standing nearest to us received group 1, so there is no rhyme or reason as to how they are given out beyond who is faster at clicking through the screens and how well the app responds.
Because of limited capacity and high demand, not everyone is guaranteed to get a boarding group. If you don’t get one, you unfortunately won’t get to ride Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance, but we’ve put together a complete guide with our best tips to help you have a much better chance at securing a group and actually getting to ride!
While we can’t say that you will absolutely get a boarding group or get on the attraction (unfortunately with the way the Virtual Queue system works there’s no way for anyone – not even Disney – to guarantee that you’ll get to ride), we can say that we have personally had good success going through all of these steps below.
We’ve broken down all of the main points and given a little detailed info for each so you’ll have a good idea of what to do before you go and once you arrive at Hollywood Studios:
Before You Get There
There are a few things that you will need to have ready to go before you arrive at Hollywood Studios and attempt to get a boarding group for Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance. In addition to having a valid theme park ticket and a park reservation for Hollywood Studios on the day you want to visit, you’ll will also want to make sure you have an up-to-date My Disney Experience account. If you don’t already have a My Disney Experience account, you will want to set one up on Disney’s website.
1. Download The My Disney Experience App
While it is technically possible to get a boarding group by visiting Guest Services in the park, a much better option is to use the My Disney Experience app on your mobile device. Since any available boarding groups for the day go within a matter of minutes (sometimes even in a matter of seconds depending on how busy the park is!), you won’t want to wait in line at Guest Services if you can help it.
You’ll want to download the My Disney Experience app on your mobile device before you arrive and make sure you have the most current version of the app. The app can be glitchy, so you’ll want to make sure everything is set up correctly long before you visit the parks. We recommend that everyone in your travel party has their own My Disney Experience account and their own app on their own mobile device so you each have access to your linked plans.
TIP: Depending on the device you have, once you download the app it may simply be called the “Disney World” app on your home screen or app menu.
– Set Up Your My Disney Experience Account In The App
Once you’ve downloaded the app to your mobile device, you’ll want to sign in to your My Disney Experience account and get everything set up in the app. Remember to do this for each person in your travel party with their own apps and accounts.
– Make Sure Your Tickets Show Up In Your Account
If you already had a My Disney Experience account and were signed in when you purchased your theme park tickets, your tickets should automatically show up in your account. We always recommend double checking your profile in the app just in case, though, to make sure everything is in order before you get to the parks. If for some reason they aren’t showing up, you should be able to link your purchased tickets with your account.
– Link Your Account With All Travelers In Your “Family & Friends List” Under “My Profile”
Once you’re logged into your account in the app, click the three lines on the bottom menu and scroll down to “My Profile”. On the “My Profile” page, click “Family & Friends List” and add the rest of your travel party into this list. You’ll have to connect with them by choosing one of the available options listed after selecting “Add Guest”.
TIP: When we did this on the app, we only saw “Find through my connected Guests” or “I’ll enter their name and age”, but when we signed into our accounts on the computer we also saw a third option of “Import from a Walt Disney World Resort hotel reservation”.
When You Arrive
Once you do all of the above before your trip, there’s a few things you’ll still have to do once you arrive if you want a good chance at getting a boarding group for Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance. Like we said above, boarding groups are on a random, first-come-first-serve basis, so there’s always a chance you may not get one at all (that’s the unfortunate downside of a Virtual Queue system like this). But, following all of these steps may at least help you to have a better chance at getting one… so long as that pesky app doesn’t crash!
1. Arrive Before Official Park Opening Time
Beginning November 3, 2020, you are no longer required to be inside the park in order to try to secure a boarding group when the initial (first batch) of boarding groups are released in the morning (at park opening time). At this time, the first round of boarding groups for the day go live at 7:00AM ET (this is true no matter what time the park officially opens). For more info on this recent change to the Virtual Queue rules, see our article – Changes for Rise of the Resistance Virtual Queue.
The following info that does not pertain specifically to the first batch of boarding groups at park opening is still accurate (you’ll still need to be in the park in order to try to get a group in the second round at 2PM).
Make sure to check the park times each day during your visit and be aware of the “official” opening time for Hollywood Studios, because this is when the first round of boarding groups will go live. Anyone who wants a chance at a boarding group is required to be through the park gates and physically in Hollywood Studios park in order to get one, so this means you will want to arrive well before official park opening time to make sure you are inside the park on time (this is no longer the case as of November 3, 2020 – see the above statement and our other article about this change for more info). If park opening is 10:00AM, you’ll want to arrive at least by 9:30AM (they usually open the parking lot thirty minutes to an hour before park opening, so keep this in mind). That way you can get through the required temperature screening, security checkpoint, and ticket scan before 10:00AM.
At this time, there are two times per day that you can try to get a boarding group (10:00AM and 2:00PM). We highly recommend trying to get a boarding group in the first round at park opening (10:00AM) if possible, because there may be very few available at 2:00PM (depending on how many people are there that day and if the ride has had any downtime). If you aren’t able to get one at 10:00AM, you can always try again at 2:00PM if there are any available. You can only get one boarding group per party per day, so if you do get one at 10:00AM you won’t be able to get another one at 2:00PM.
– Scan Your Tickets And Enter The Park
Once you get through the temperature and security screenings, you’ll walk up to the Mickey silhouette pedestals at Hollywood Studio’s front gate and scan your ticket card or MagicBand to enter the park. As we mentioned in step one above, you’ll want to make sure you’ve used your ticket to enter the park before official opening time. This process usually only takes a few seconds, so you should be through the gates pretty quickly.
2. Find A Spot To Wait And Have Your App Ready
We always try to find a good spot to sit/stand and wait to try to get a boarding group. You’ll find that a lot of people will head to the lands/attractions they want to ride first and try to secure a boarding group for Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance while they wait in line for another ride, but others will wait along the sidewalks and pathways throughout the front of the park. We always head to the corner next to Keystone Clothiers (the second block on the left with the greenish blue building on the corner).
We don’t suggest using Disney’s WiFi if possible because many people do and it can cause internet slow downs. Since boarding groups can often “sell out” within 30 seconds to a few minutes, you won’t want to deal with a fickle WiFi connection. During our last trip, one of the Cast Members we talked to suggested using our cell service rather than WiFi for a better chance at getting a boarding group.
Once you’ve found your spot to wait, try opening your app a few times to make sure it’s running fine and that your account remains signed in. You’ll need your app to be running smoothly and for it to recognize that you’re physically in the park in order to go through the Virtual Queue process.
– Have More Than One Person Try To Get A Boarding Group With Their Own Apps If Possible
With a combination of a random, first-come-first-serve system and a glitchy app, you’ll have a much better chance at securing a boarding group if you have more than one person in your party attempting to get one (just make sure that everyone in your party has their account signed into their own app and you’re all connected through “Family & Friends”).
The last two times we tried to get a boarding group, we both tried on our own apps at the exact same time, which was good, because both times one of our apps ended up experiencing an error and the other was able to get a group. That’s not to say that you won’t get a boarding group if you’re the only person to try to get one in your party, but your chances are likely better if you have more than one person trying with their own app at the same time as you are. Whoever is able to secure a boarding group will do so for the entire party, so once one of you gets one, the others will automatically be notified on their apps.
TIP: If your app gives any kind of error message during the process, immediately refresh the screen or go back to the prior screen and try the process again.
– Open The App Right Before The Official Boarding Group Reservation Time
Sometimes the app may not refresh fast enough if you’ve had the app open for a while, so it’s a good idea to reopen it a minute or two before the Virtual Queue goes live just to make sure it’s ready to go. If your app tends to crash a lot, however, you may want to open it five or so minutes before. That way if it repeatedly crashes you can try reopening it again until it stays up and ready to go.
– As Soon As The Clock Strikes 10:00AM (or 2:00PM), Click “Join” On The App Home Screen
You should hear an announcement over the park speakers a few minutes beforehand that boarding groups are about to go live, so make sure you’re ready to go. Open your app right before 10:00AM (or 2:00PM if you’re trying for the second round of groups), then scroll down on the app’s home screen until you see the section that says “Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance – Request Access with Virtual Queue”. Watch the clock at the top of your phone screen closely, and as soon as it changes to 10:00AM (or 2:00PM), immediately click “Join”.
If there is a second person in your party trying at the same time with their own app, there’s a second option they may want to try. Once they open the app, click the “Check Status” option next to the “Join” button on the home screen, and then on the next screen keep refreshing the page by pulling down on the screen repeatedly until the “Join” button shows up. (They can also do this by navigating to the three line menu, going to “Virtual Queues”, and then doing the exact same thing until the “Join” shows up.)
TIP: If you don’t get a boarding pass right away, refresh the page by pulling down on the screen. The app may glitch, so if it doesn’t go to the next step in the process right away, you may need to refresh and try again. Just try to go as quickly as possible and keep trying to get one until you do or they are all gone. It can sometimes take a literal second or two to go to the next screen/step, but if it takes longer than that you may want to go back and try to join again right away until it works.
– Follow The On Screen Prompts As Quickly As Possible To Try To Secure A Boarding Group
The app knows what to do, so just click through each screen without taking the time to read each one (many people going through this Virtual Queue process have already gone through it multiple times before, so they will be moving through the screens very quickly). The faster you go, the better chance you’ll have of getting a boarding group.
Since the recent My Disney Experience app update, the app should know to connect your entire party together automatically, but if this doesn’t work, quickly choose the people in your party that show up on the screen (or “Select All” if everyone in your list wants to ride with you that day).
If your party is assigned a boarding group, you’ll be given a group number and an estimated return time, which will be connected to your ticket card/MagicBand.
If your app simply states your boarding group number, you should get to ride so long as the ride doesn’t go down for the whole day for any reason. If you’re given a “backup” group (your app will let you know this), then you may or may not get to ride depending on if they get through all of the main assigned groups for the day.
– Find Your Group Number And Return Time In The “Check Status” or “Virtual Queues” Section In Your App
You can find “Check Status” on the home screen of the My Disney Experience App in the same area where you clicked “Join” (scroll down and look for the section labeled “Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance – Request Access with Virtual Queue”).
This is where you can find your boarding group number and return time information. You can also find this same information by clicking the three line menu in the app and then clicking “Virtual Queues”.
3. Head To The Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance Attraction Entrance When Your Group Is Called
Once it’s time for your group to board, you’ll be notified with your return time (don’t forget to turn notifications “ON” for your My Disney Experience app on your device) and you’ll be able to go straight to the attraction entrance and enter the line for the ride. As of right now, you have one hour from your given return time to make your way to the attraction entrance and tap your ticket card or MagicBand at the entrance to the ride, but we suggest getting there as soon as possible once your group is called so as not to miss your window.
TIP: If your utilizing Disney’s Disability Access Service, you can let the Cast Members at the entrance to Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance know and then you may be able to use a shorter queue line.
So to summarize:
- Download The My Disney Experience App
- Set Up Your My Disney Experience Account In The App
- Link Your Accounts Together In Your “Family & Friends List”
- Arrive Before Official Park Opening Time (Now you only need to be in the park for the 2PM boarding groups – see our article about the recent changes to the Virtual Queue system to learn more about this)
- Scan Your Tickets And Enter The Park
- Find A Spot To Wait And Have Your Apps Ready
- As Soon As Boarding Groups Go Live, Click “Join” On The App Home Screen (Remember To Refresh If Needed)
- Follow The On Screen Prompts As Quickly As Possible
- Find Your Group Number And Return Time Under “Check Status” or “Virtual Queues”
- Head To The Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance Attraction Entrance When Your Group Is Called
Have fun and thanks for reading! Take a look at these articles for more info and updates about the Disney parks:
As always, we encourage you to visit Disney’s website for all official information and to make sure that none of this information has changed since this article was written. Disney frequently makes changes and updates to their parks and offerings. Because of this, the information in this post was current at the time of publishing and is subject to change at any moment. We update our website and articles as often as we can, but it is always a good idea to double check Disney’s official website before planning your trip or visiting the Walt Disney World Resort.
Last Updated on November 10, 2020