Have you ever visited Disney World and pushed your way through an impossibly enormous crowd only to discover that the standby line for Haunted Mansion -- an attraction that you and your theme park posse really wanted to ride -- was snaking out into Liberty Square? And the wait time was over two hours? Yeesh.
Have you ever wished that you could just sashay up to the front of the line and walk right into the famous stretching room?
Or skip all the infernal lines at the popular resort? Well, you can.
I'm not talking about Fastpass+, Disney's ingenious ride reservation system. Yes, you can use My Disney Experience to reserve some rides in advance of your visit and, in fact, skip to the front of the line of Haunted Mansion and many other attractions. But there are all kinds of restrictions and limits. And no matter how much planning you do, you're bound to end up waiting in at least a few -- if not many -- lines.
But what if I told you that you could forget about Fastpasses, MagicBands, and all of the other line management technology and strategies that Disney offers, but still walk right onto nearly every ride your heart desires? All you need are some bucks -- lots of 'em.
Disney World doesn't trumpet it too loudly, but the resort offers something it calls VIP Tour Services. It allows participants to hop right onto most rides of their choosing as well as a bunch of other benefits.
In 2016, the fee to book a premium tour is -- brace yourself -- $400 to $600 per hour, depending on the time of the year. There is a minimum 7-hour duration, so a tour could cost as much as $4,200. Yikes! And note that the cost does not include theme park admission.
On the positive side, each guide can accommodate up to 10 guests, so the per-person price for a fully loaded tour starts at about $280.
That's still plenty of money, but at least it might be within the realm of possibility for folks of modest means. (If you're among the moneybags class, I guess price would be less of a concern.)
Other VIP Tour Service features include door-to-door transportation, VIP seating for parades and shows, and the insight of the trained guide. (You may have seen the guides at the parks; they're the ones wearing the tartan vests.) Despite the price, the program is quite popular and availability can be limited. Make reservations well in advance if you want to take advantage of the service.
To learn more about the program: