Animal Kingdom Fastpass+ Tips and Strategies

Animal Kingdom Fastpass+ Tips and Strategies

Animal Kingdom Fastpass+

FastPass+ (FP+) is a great system that lets you reserve up to 3 attractions or entertainment experiences in advance for each day of your Walt Disney World vacation. You can find out more details about the FastPass+ system, including when and how you can make your reservations,  in our FastPass+ Guide.

FastPass+ Attractions at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Tips for using FastPass+ at Disney’s Animal Kingdom


FastPass+ Attractions

Currently, FastPass+ is available for the following Animal Kingdom rides, shows, and experiences:

Tips for using FastPass+ at Disney’s Animal Kingdom

Unlike Epcot and Disney’s Hollywood Studios, Animal Kingdom does not have any tiers for FastPass selection, so you can choose any three attractions you would like. Here are a few tips to help you decide which three experiences you will choose.

General Strategy

If you and your group are up for anything and just want to experience all that the park has to offer, the attractions for which Animal Kingdom Fastpass+ will save you the most time are generally Dinosaur, Expedition Everest, Kali River Rapids, and Kilimanjaro Safaris. If you plan on arriving right when the park opens, you can head straight to one of these and use FastPass+ on the others. See below for a discussion of the new nighttime show, Rivers of Light, and whether to use one of your FastPass+ there.

Groups with Small Children

When visiting the Animal Kingdom with small children, Kilimanjaro Safaris should still be your first Animal Kingdom FastPass+ selection, but after that your best bet is probably the Adventurer’s Outpost and then either Festival of the Lion King of Finding Nemo – The Musical. If you will be staying into the evening, you might want to get a FastPass for Rivers of Light, to ensure a space to see it. However, this show is presented in the evening, so choosing it would limit your ability to add additional FastPass+ after your initial three.

Thrill Seekers

For thrill seekers visiting the Animal Kingdom, Expedition Everest is definitely your first choice (bonus tip: schedule this FastPass+ first and then head straight there when the park opens and you can ride twice back to back). Dinosaur is a natural second choice, and then Kali River Rapids. If you don’t want to get wet, you could substitute Primeval Whirl for Kali River Rapids.


Disney’s Animal Kingdom features several fantastic shows, and you may choose to schedule one with a FastPass+ reservation. If you do so, there are a few things you need to know as you are planning the rest of the day.

First, the FastPass+ time listed for the show will be your arrival time, not the show time. For example, you may have FastPass+ time of 10:35 a.m.- 10:50 a.m. for Festival of the Lion King. This means you need to arrive between those times and will get seating for the 11:00 a.m. show. The show then lasts 30 minutes, so even though your FastPass+ time ends at 10:50 a.m., you will be busy until 11:30 a.m.

Second, this shorter FastPass+ time allows you to schedule your FastPass+ closer to each other, or finish your third FastPass+ earlier, thus allowing you to schedule additional FastPasses more quickly.

Rivers of Light

Since February 2017, nighttime visitors to the Animal Kingdom have been able to “embrace the magic of nature during a nighttime scene awash with captivating special effects, music and animal folklore” with the newest nighttime spectacular at Walt Disney World – Rivers of Light. This show is currently presented twice a night in a newly constructed theater that can hold around 5,000 guests.

With all of that in mind, the decision of whether or not to reserve a FastPass+ for Rivers of Light is a little different than the other nighttime shows using FastPass+ (Illuminations and Fantasmic!) in that both of those shows can accommodate many more guests and also take a valuable Tier 1 FastPass+ option. Because of that, if you want to see Rivers of Light anytime soon, the best way to insure a seat would be either to use a FastPass+ or reserve a Rivers of Light Dining Package (currently available at Tiffins and Tusker House). Please note, if you use a FastPass+ for Rivers of Light, you will not be able to reserve an additional FastPass+ until you enter the show and your MagicBand is scanned.

If you decide to use one of your three FastPass+ for Rivers of Light and still want to try to experience everything else Animal Kingdom has to offer, your best bet would probably be to use your other two FastPass+ reservations on Expedition Everest and Kilimanjaro Safaris.

Visit our FastPass+ Guide for more details on FastPass+, and great MouseForLess tips on how to use utilize this  tool to its fullest. Visit our MyMagic+ to get information about using MagicBand during your park visit.


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