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How to Plan Your Disneyland Day – Disneyland Touring Plan – with Genie+

Last updated: May 23, 2024.  Please email us if you find any errors.

Are you planning your Disneyland vacation and feeling overwhelmed with the options and unsure how to navigate the parks?  Disney can often leave guests, first-timers, and repeaters, overwhelmed. Using our Disneyland touring plan in place will help to ensure your day’s success!  Let’s get started!

Disneyland Sleeping Beauty Castle at night

Disneyland is the original theme park, the iconic original if you will.  It’s the perfect place to start your love of Disney and return to each year.  While Disneyland and Magic Kingdom at Disney World are similar in layout and some attractions, the differences are glaring once inside.

Start your Disneyland vacation at Disneyland Park, you won’t be disappointed!Disneyland map

What You Need to Know About Genie+ and Lightning Lane Before Visiting Hollywood Studios


Genie+ is a paid service at Disneyland that replaced the old FastPass system and works a bit differently.

Genie+ Guide

Genie+ can be purchased each day of your trip, or added on when you purchase your tickets. It must be purchased for each person who wants to ride with Genie+.

Rides included in Genie+ are selected on the official Disneyland app with a specific return time when you can join the Lightning Lane line. You will have a one hour window to scan in at the Lightning Lane entrance. You can use Genie+ for each eligible ride once per day.

Everyone can choose their first Genie+ selection as soon as you scan in at either park. You can make a second selection either 2 hours later, or after you use your first Genie selection – whichever comes first.

Genie+ also gives you access to PhotoPass photos, which includes photos taken by Disney photographers, ride photos, and interactive PhotoPass lenses to use on your phone. This is a great benefit to have your vacation memories saved for you!Disneyland app Disney Genie+ Service

Lightning Lane

Some of the more popular rides in each park are not included with your Genie+ purchase.  However, you can purchase Lightning Lane access separately.  These few attractions are called “Individual Lightning Lanes”. Confused yet?  We know, the names make it extra tricky! But we promise, it will all come together for you!

Disneyland Lightning Lane on app

Individual Lightning Lanes can purchased, in your My Disney Experience app, as a per person, per ride add on – for each ride offered.

Those rides are: (Subject to change)

  • Rise of the Resistance at Disneyland Park
  • Radiator Springs Racers at California Adventure Park.

Pro Tip: Always set an alarm on your phone for the time you can pick another Genie+ selection! The app will always tell you exactly what time you can choose the next one. In some cases it’s 2 hours since your last selection, or when you scan in to use a Genie+ selection. Check the app each time you scan in for a ride to see if you can select a new ride.

Park Strategy with Genie+ for Disneyland Park:

Sleeping Beauty Castle Disneyland

Here’s your Disneyland plan. Let’s get started!

Arrive at least one hour before park opening. Park hours can be found in your Disneyland app or on the Disneyland Website.

As soon as you’re scanned into Disneyland:

Once scanned in, purchase Genie+ for each guest (if not purchased with your tickets)
• Select first Genie+ for Matterhorn
• Purchase Individual Lightning Lane for Rise of the Resistance, if wanted
• Line up for “rope drop” near Tomorrowland
• Ride Space Mountain standby
• Ride Star Tours standby
• Ride Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters standby
• Ride Matterhorn with Genie+
• Select Genie+ for Indiana Jones Adventure
• Ride Jungle Cruise standby
• Ride Pirates of the Caribbean standby
• If Genie+ for Indiana Jones is later in the day, get some Fantasyland rides done
• Ride Snow White’s Enchanted Wish, Pinocchio’s Daring Journey, Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride
• Select Genie+ for Big Thunder Mountain Railroad when new selection is available
• Ride Mad Tea Party, Alice in Wonderland, Storybookland Canal Boats
• Ride Indiana Jones Adventure with Genie+
• Select Genie+ for Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway
• Fill time with Mark Twain Riverboat, Disneyland Railraod, Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room
• Ride Big Thunder Mountain Railroad with Genie+
• Select Genie+ for Millennium Falcon: Smuggler’s Run
• Ride “it’s a small world” standby
• Use Genie+ for Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway
• Ride Millenium Falcon:Smuggler’s Run with Genie+
• If you want to ride Rise of the Resistance standby, get in line if you see it 60 minutes or under (usually closes around 8pm)
• Select Genie+ for anything you’d like to ride again: Space Mountain, Pirates of the Caribbean, or Star Tours
• Other rides on Genie+ that are usually easy to get throughout the day: Autopia, “it’s a small world”, Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters
• If Fantasyland rides are a priority, you can also get those done at “rope drop” and ride Space Mountain with Genie+ later in the day. Skip Peter Pan first thing in the morning.
*While Haunted Mansion is closed for refurbishment, Pirates of the Caribbean is offering Genie+ in its place*

For additional Park Touring plans visit the following:

For additional information on Genie+ and Lightning Lane search “Genie” in the top right.  Here are links to a few of our favorites.

Ready to book your next magical vacation?  Contact your favorite Love of the Magic Vacations Travel Advisor or email

Disneyland Touring Plan Pin

Jamie Rumph
Jamie Rumph
Hi, I'm Jamie, traveling mama, entrepreneur, and travel advisor. I'm addicted to Disney, traveling and exploring the world with my family, and have a passion for helping families experience the magic of travel. My home is filled with love and chaos, 2 crazy girls, 2 large dogs, and the most spectacular architect and Disney Cast Member I call my husband. We live in Florida and spend our weekends playing at Orlando's many theme parks and visiting the beach. In 2015, after helping numerous families plan their vacations to various Disney Destinations, I started a blog to answer all of the many travel questions I received daily. In 2016, the blog grew into a travel agency, and Love of the Magic Vacations was born. With a team of nearly 20, we spend our days creating family vacations around the world. What started as a blog is now a full service, worldwide vacation destination planning service. I create custom itineraries for each of my clients that not only meets but exceeds expectations. There is no greater gift than making memories while sharing the world and its cultures with your kids.


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