Why I Will Never Use MaxPass Again!

This post details my experience using MaxPass for the first time. Many Disneyland Guests buy a ticket and buy MaxPass as an add on or do not have this as a perk of their pass. They are not familiar with MaxPass. Many people love MaxPass. I understand that my opinion may not be popular. My review is as a first time user of MaxPass. 

As a Disney blogger I will endorse anything I believe will enhance your experience. Even if that endorsement means you spend more money I will endorse that. I said in the past MaxPass is not worth your money. MaxPass is nothing but a fancier version of FastPass. Disneyland offers free ways to get on rides faster for a great experience.

The park was busy but not at capacity I visit the 17th every year. I have been to Disneyland when it was much busier. I have been to Disneyland over 1,000 times as I visit weekly. My son is a Cast Member, and I have discussed using MaxPass in detail with Cast Members before I bought it.

Cast Members and other people tell me Disney improved MaxPass. That MaxPass is so much better. You can book your MaxPass and before you get on that ride you can book another one. So I decided  to try MaxPass.

My husband and I went on July 17 which is Disneyland's anniversary and my wedding anniversary. Long story short Disney's MaxPass sucks. 

Because my husband Self Admits I cannot buy the MaxPass in the car on the way to Disneyland. Self Admission for Disneyland is when you get a complementary ticket. Every time you visit your ticket number is different. We entered the park in Downtown Disney. We took the monorail in and it took the entire monorail ride for me to buy the MaxPass.

You click get FastPass with Disney MaxPass to start. You must find every ticket in your party. If you have a pass and are saving tickets for Mickey’s Halloween party, you have a lot of tickets to scroll through. If you have a credit card saved the app will still ask for your CVC code from the credit card on file. That is a pain in the butt. 

My main gripe is the app itself. Once I paid for MaxPass, the app did not show me how to reserve a MaxPass. We figured out on our own and MaxPass is not user-friendly. There are several steps to get ride reservations.

You must click on the get FastPass with Disney MaxPass when you want a new ride time. Every single time you must select the party members. You must pick which park you want to reserve a ride time in. Once you make a ride selection, you must confirm the selection. MaxPass cannot remember every person. I guess if your party wants to split up MaxPass is a great feature but if you are together all day; it is an extra step.

I hope they can improve MaxPass to show all attractions in one list rather than divided by parks. I want to know without taking extra steps there are more options at California Adventure.

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At 10:00 AM I tried booking a MaxPass. A MaxPass ride was not available for two hours. Here is the frustrating part MaxPass doesn’t give you any extra special perks. MaxPass is a FastPass. With a standard FastPass, you ride at the same time. If the attraction is giving out at 12 o’clock in the afternoon, a FastPass for 10 PM you don’t get to go on that ride until 10 PM. If you book a MaxPass, you can’t reserve more MaxPasses.


So let me give me an example my husband wanted to go on Space Mountain. At 12:30 in the afternoon we tried to book a MaxPass for Space Mountain. The only option is to return several hours later. Which ties up our MaxPass. Do you understand where I’m going with this? The system is flawed. Disney should offer separate return times for people with MaxPass. 

If paying $10 for convenience, you should be able at 12:30 in the afternoon book a 1:30 return time for Space Mountain. Or book a ride that is no longer is handing out FastPasses. Star Tours throughout the day never offered a FastPass for us. We paid extra for MaxPass so why should we stand in the standby line. 

My husband, and I rode Splash Mountain as our first ride and that wasn’t our plan. As I mentioned we rode the monorail and disembarked in Tomorrowland to enter Disneyland. We wanted to go on Space Mountain or Matterhorn first. A return time within a reasonable period for both rides was not available. We had to walk across the park. Using MaxPass does not mean less walking.



Because I paid $20 total for MaxPass ($15 per person as of 2019) and did not want to waste that money, I did ridiculous things. I went back-and-forth between the theme parks to go on rides with available MaxPass times. After the Incredicoaster at California Adventure we wanted to return to Disneyland. But we felt trapped.

We stayed at California Adventure. The only MaxPass attraction we could ride in a reasonable amount of time was Grizzly River Run. So we waited two hours. I found myself beholden to the system because I paid money for it.

We are here having a kid free experience and find ourselves with little options. The standby rides with the short wait were kids rides. Now my husband and I had a choice. We wait 2-4 hours and kill time on kids rides or go back to the other park and go on a ride in an hour. We will change parks. Hence we walked a lot more than usual.

On, a normal visit I get a FastPass and pair it with Single Rider lines. For example, I’m in the New Orleans Square and Frontierland area I will get a FastPass for Big Thunder Mountain. I then ride Indiana Jones. You can cut through the gift shops to get there faster too.

I use the Single Rider line. To kill the time before my FastPass on a nearby ride that has a short standby line or hang out in Tarzan's Treehouse. I stay close to the attraction the FastPass is for but knock out a few other attractions while waiting. I can go on over a dozen rides in less than 5-6 hours even on crowded days.

One of my favorite things to do is get a FastPass for the Haunted Mansion. I ride Winnie the Pooh and then use Single Rider line for Splash Mountain. By then I can use my Haunted Mansion FastPass. This is how I ride three plus rides in under an hour. Even when it's crowded.

Another combo I love is FastPass for Small World or Roger Rabbit. Then I use the Single Rider option for the Matterhorn. Then go on the Tea Cups and King Arthur Carrousel which even on busy days the line goes fast. I never wait over 10 minutes for each ride. Sometimes Casey Junior and the Storybook Canal Boats have a small line so I will ride those.

I get MaxPass cannot stop me from doing that but the point of having MaxPass is so I do not wait or walk around. The fact is, you get off one ride and cannot always get another return time soon after that ride. For, someone like me aiming for E Ticket experience MaxPass is a letdown. Sticking to my old method would not work well on Single Rider attractions. My husband and I wanted to sit together.

The bottom line is MaxPass has fans who endorse MaxPass. Many MaxPass users are Annual Pass Holders and this is a perk of their pass. Many are happy to book a FastPass on the app. To them that is enough. They do not care if they must wait.

When paying for MaxPass things are different. If you want a specific experience or have made dining reservations, this is not the best option. With dining reservations to consider MaxPass can be a hinderance. Many times MaxPass offered me the chance to book an E Ticket during dining reservations.

After, over twelve hours we used MaxPass for three rides. Overall, the MaxPass offered no convenience for me at all. MaxPass saved no time. It did not help us walk less. In fact I walked more yesterday than I had before. MaxPass did not help us go on more rides. Until Disneyland fixes the system, we will not be using it again.

I recommend you read my previous post on MaxPass.

If you are traveling with a baby or toddler here is a guide to Disneyland with babies.

Bringing preschool-aged children to Disneyland

How to avoid losing your kids at Disneyland

Wondering if a MaxPass is worth the cost?

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2017 Mickeys Halloween Party

Line Tips

Why I Dislike MaxPass as an add on. #Disneyland #MaxPass