Fantasmic Fastpass at Disneyland

by Adrienne Vincent-Phoenix, staff writer
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Updated March 28, 2015

Disneyland's Fantasmic has been upgraded to include new effects and technology several times since it debuted in 1992, but a small piece of paper may represent the biggest change in the show's history.

Starting December 12, 2014, Fantasmic will move to a Fastpass system similar to the one used for the World of Color show in Disney California Adventure. With Fastpass comes a new Fantasmic Dining Package program, with four different options ranging from a grab-and-go picnic at Aladdin's Oasis, to a new 3-course table service dinner offering at River Belle Terrace.

All together, there will be 6 different ways to see Fantasmic, and as many as 6 different viewing areas. The workings of this new program are so detailed that Disney published a 6-page guide for cast members, including answers to 44 likely questions from guests.


Disneyland debuts a new Fantasmic Fastpass system on December 12. Photo © Disney.

Reservations for the new dining offerings begin online via Disneyland.com on Tuesday, November 12, so you have just a day to figure out how best to see Fantasmic if you're planning a visit during the holiday season. We've prepared this guide to help you navigate the options and make the best plan for your visit. Please note that some details are not yet finalized, and we'll update this information as soon as new information becomes available.

Starting from most-expensive and working down to the no-charge options, here are the six new ways to see Fantasmic at Disneyland after December 12, 2014, along with some general notes that apply to all viewing areas:

1) Reserve a Fantasmic dinner package at the Blue Bayou

The new Fantasmic dining package at the Blue Bayou is a 3-course prix fixe meal, with your choice of starter, entree and dessert. The package includes all of the entrees from the normal Blue Bayou dinner menu. Dinner service begins at 4 p.m. The restaurant will also accept regular (non Fantasmic dining) reservations.

This location can accommodate many dietary restrictions – be sure to note your restrictions when you make the reservation, and ask to speak with a manager or chef when you arrive to discuss specifics.

The cost is $61 for adults, $23 for ages 3-9. Tax and gratuity are not included. Premium and Premier passholders receive a 15% discount; all other passes receive a 10% discount.

Guests who book this package are expected to be assigned to the best viewing area, and are given a souvenir Fantasmic cushion to sit on during the show.

Four new dining packages are part of Disneyland's new Fantasmic program. Photo © Disney.

2) Reserve a Fantasmic dinner package at the River Belle Terrace

Starting December 12, River Belle Terrace will debut a new offering for Fantasmic dining packages. The restaurant will cease counter-service service at 2 p.m., and will reopen at 3 p.m. as a table service operation. The restaurant will offer a three-course prix fixe Fantasmic dinner, including starter, entree and dessert.

Bread service

Starter:

  • Mixed greens
  • Corn chowder

Entree – choice of:

  • New York strip steak and Cajun shrimp skewer
  • Rosemary grilled chicken breast
  • Hand-topped pasta Primavera

Dessert – choice of:

  • Caramel apple pie
  • Chocolate cake

The children's menu includes:

Starter – vegetable crudités with ranch dressing

Entree – choice of:

  • New York strip steak
  • Rosemary grilled chicken breast
  • Macaroni and cheese

Dessert – choice of:

  • Cupcake
  • Fruit skewer

This location can accommodate many dietary restrictions – be sure to note your restrictions when you make the reservation, and ask to speak with a manager or chef when you arrive to discuss specifics.

The cost is $41.99 for adults, $22.99 for ages 3-9. Tax and gratuity are not included. Premium and Premier passholders receive a 15% discount; all other passes receive a 10% discount.

Guests who book this package will be in a different viewing area than those who book the Blue Bayou package, and do not receive the souvenir Fantasmic cushion. Subject to availability, you may also request to remain in the River Belle Terrace seating area and watch the show from your table.

3) Reserve the Fantasmic Dessert Experience at the Hungry Bear Restaurant

This offering was discontinued in March, 2015.

This new offering includes a plated dessert assortment, live entertainment, and a separate reserved viewing area for Fantasmic.

The dessert assortment includes snack-sized portions of 8-layer Ghirardelli chocolate cake, chocolate opera cake, coconut macaroons, Madeleine cookies with dipping sauces, a chocolate truffle and a chocolate Sorcerer Mickey disc.

The package also includes your choice of hot coffee or hot cocoa, plus a "seasonal favorite" beverage.

A gluten-free dessert option will be offered upon request – be sure to note your request when you make your reservation. At this time, there are no plans for a sugar-free option, but that may change if there is enough demand.

The cost is $29.99 for ages 3 and up, and tax and gratuity are included. Premium and Premier passholders receive a 15% discount; all other passes receive a 10% discount.

Each dessert service begins 90 minutes before show time. Guests who book this package will be escorted to a separate reserved viewing area for Fantasmic prior to the show, and will not be seated with the Blue Bayou or River Belle Terrace customers.

4) Reserve a Fantasmic On the Go meal at Aladdin's Oasis

Similar to the World of Color picnics, the On the Go meal at Aladdin's Oasis offers a more flexible option for those who don't want to devote the time or money to one of the table service options.

Aladdin's Oasis will be open from Noon to 7 p.m. on Fantasmic nights, and customers select a pick up time when they make their reservation. Limited seating is available inside Aladdin's Oasis, or you can take your On the Go meal to any counter service restaurant seating area.

Adult entree options include choice of:

  • Herb marinated chicken breast with vegetables
  • Lasagna Bolognese
  • Vegetarian lasagna

Adult meals are served with mixed greens, a dinner roll and marble cheesecake for dessert. The package includes choice of beverage.

Children's entree options include choice of:

  • Grilled chicken
  • Spaghetti
  • Macaroni and cheese

Children's meals are served with vegetables and a cookie. The package includes choice of beverage.

This location can accommodate many dietary restrictions – be sure to note your restrictions when you make the reservation, and ask to speak with a manager or chef when you arrive to discuss specifics.

The cost is $19.99 for adults, $13.99 for ages 3-9. Tax and gratuity are not included. Premium and Premier passholders receive a 15% discount; all other passes receive a 10% discount.

Guests who purchase this package will receive a Fastpass ticket for the show, but we do not know if there is a separate section reserved for the Aladdin's package, or if they will be mixed with the general Fastpass viewing.

5) Get a Fastpass the day you wish to see the show

Fastpass tickets will be distributed along Big Thunder Trail starting at park opening. Tickets will be distributed while supplies last, or up to one hour before show time., whichever comes first. The tickets will indicate the show time, return time and assigned viewing section.

As with World of Color, Fastpass distribution will begin with the first show. When those tickets are distributed, tickets for the second show will become available.

Your park ticket must have been used for admission before you can get a Fastpass ticket. This means you can't send one member of the family in to get Fastpass tickets for everyone, while the rest of the family sleeps in at the hotel. Likewise, passholders can not get Fastpass tickets for their entire family unless everyone has already entered the park. However, so long as all tickets and passes have been used for admission that day, you can send a runner to get tickets for your entire group.

The Fantasmic Fastpass is not linked to the Resort Fastpass system, and will not prevent you from collecting another Fastpass immediately.

6) Wait for a standby spot

A standby section near River Belle Terrace will provide "limited standby viewing" for people without a Fastpass ticket. This viewing area will open at the same time the reserved Fastpass areas open for each show.

Note: Disney will clear the entire Fantasmic viewing area before each show, so you no longer have the option of arriving hours before the show and camping out for a spot.

General notes:

  • The Fastpass system is in place for the first two showings of Fantasmic each day. If a third show is scheduled or added, the entire viewing area is open on a first-come, first-serve basis.
  • In the event the showing of Fantasmic for which you hold a Fastpass ticket is cancelled, you may not use that ticket for another show time or date. This applies to dining package tickets as well.
  • Children under 3 do not need a Fastpass ticket.
  • Dining package customers can select their preferred show time. when you make your reservation.
  • As with the World of Color packages, there is no refund of your dining package in the event your scheduled performance of Fantasmic is cancelled.
  • Dining packages can be booked via Disneyland.com, or by calling 714-781-DINE, starting November 12.
  • Same-day reservations may be made, subject to availability, up to one hour in advance via Disneyland.com or by calling 714-781-DINE.
  • Same-day walk up reservations may also be made at Blue Bayou, River Belle Terrace and Aladdin's Oasis, based on availability.
  • Walk-up reservations are no offered for the Hungry Bear dessert package, so be sure to make those in advance.
  • A credit card is required to reserve one of the dining packages, and there is a $10 per-person cancellation fee if you cancel the reservation less than 24 hours in advance, or no-show for your reservation.

I have a Fastpass - now what?

Your Fastpass will include your assigned viewing area, show time, and return time. You will also be told when and where to line up before the show. The earlier you join the line, the earlier you will enter the viewing area and the better your chance of grabbing a better spot.

We expect that Big Thunder Trail area will be used as the return queue for Fantasmic. The smoking section currently located along the trail will be moved closer to Fantasyland as part of this new program.

Sitting or Standing?

One of the things we've noticed is careful wording about sitting and standing, making it seem that there will be some standing-only sections for Fantasmic. Disney spokesperson Erin Glover confirmed this in a reply posted on the Disney Parks Blog article about the new offering, saying, "Some viewing areas offer seating on the ground, while others are standing-only sections."

At this time, the only thing we know for certain is that the Blue Bayou package will have a ground-seating area, as that package comes with a souvenir cushion. However, Glover also said, "Guests with special needs will be accommodated on an individual basis," so be sure to speak with the cast members in your assigned area for assistance.

Once you've read all the details of the new program, we invite you to share your thoughts about the changes.

 

Comments

  1. By spectromen

    As tempting it would be to complain that this is yet another price-gouging maneuver on DLR's part, I'm actually excited about this! It'll be great to eat a nice meal and then have a spot up close without waiting 2 hours.

  2. By corona

    I'm curious about how exactly the "FASTPASSES" will be distributed. Will there be machines set up along the Big Thunder Trail? Would some BTMRR \machines be re-purposed? Will these look like other FASPASSES or like the Frozen return tickets?

  3. By Jimbo996

    I will be glad to see the campers go away. Fastpass distribution at Big Thunder Trail is a long walk. I wonder why can't get a more central location. I would prefer they use the Jungle Cruise fastpass booth for Fantasmic. I guess this means Fantasmic will continue to be the hot ticket even after World of Color came along. People who miss out will have to see World of Color instead. Or wait for the 3rd showing of the night.

  4. By SteveMartin

    I think option #3 contains a typo; it states that tax and gratuity are included...the other options specifically state tax and gratuity are *not* included.

  5. By jcruise86

    THANK YOU for that article!

    Like Jimbo996, I won't miss the blanket city, especially the unattended blankets and those taking up too much real estate.

    I wouldn't want to be the CMs enforcing all of this, but I'll be glad to have reserved seats when the system runs smoothly.

    I wish the dessert options included a healthy fruit cup.

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