This ultimate guide will help you plan ahead your DisneySea Tokyo visit, to ensure you can cover all the popular rides, and still have enough time to immerse yourself in the magical presence of just being inside a Disney theme park.
1. First thing first, DisneySea or DisneyLand
The main differences are,
DisneyLand is the classic Disney theme park, of which the shows and parades are more extravagant in comparison. More suitable for younger children, and it has the trademark “It’s a small world” puppetry attraction.
DisneySea on the other hand has more rides, e.g. Tower of terror, Indiana Jones etc. More suitable for older kids, and not limiting to young-at-heart-adults.
This ultimate guide will discuss specifically on DisneySea.
2. Plan your trip
When to go: Avoid weekends and Japanese public holidays (check Japanese school holidays: end Mar to early Apr, end July to end Aug, and Christmas week)
Public holidays especially will be crazy. Locals from out of town, and student tours will flood the park like a tsunami.
Buy your tickets: Online! We like to use Klook website, which is reliable and easy to use. Be sure to get the Direct entry option which doesn’t require you to exchange for a physical ticket before entering the park (this can save you a lot of time at the entrance).
Use my Klook invitation link to get discount as soon as you sign up.
Note that there’s another option on Klook which includes transfer from Tokyo city to DisneySea. However, this will require you to exchange for a physical ticket from a different counter before entering the park.
3. Visit the Official Tokyo DisneySea Attractions website, and select the rides you want to cover
I strongly recommend to go through the attractions list on the Official website, to select and prioritise the rides you want to cover.
We ranked our list by Must-do(s), Optional(s), and Don’t-bother(s).
The Don’t-bother(s) list was basically the rides we regarded as a bit childish, e.g. The Whirlpool (spinning teacups), and that we were very sure we don’t want to do.
Our Must-do(s) list has: Tower of terror, Indiana Jones, Journey to the center of the Earth, Sinbad’s storybook voyage, Big band beat (show), and Out of shadowland (show).
Optional(s) list has: 20,000 leagues under the sea, raging spirits, King Triton’s concert (show), and Toy Story mania.
Having gone through this mental model will definitely help save a lot of time discussing with your group on what to do next, where to go etc.
4. Develop your Fast Pass game plan
First, you need to understand how the FASTPASS work.
Unlike Universal Studios theme parks, there is no option to pay for an Express pass in Disneyland theme parks. Instead, you queue for a FASTPASS (only on popular attractions).
On FASTPASS attractions, you will see two queues, i.e. Standby queue (which is the normal queue until you get your turn), and the FASTPASS queue (where you will get a FASTPASS with a designated time period printed on it).
Now, the rules are,
- Each FASTPASS admits one guest only. So, have everyone’s tickets ready when you are queuing for the FASTPASS.
- After you get your first FASTPASS, you cannot get a second FASTPASS to the same attraction before the designated time period on your first FASTPASS ends.
- You may get a second FASTPASS to another different attraction, but only after 90 minutes from when you got your first FASTPASS.
If you ace your Fast Pass game plan, you can maximise the number of FASTPASS used. My record was 4 FASTPASS in a day. How did you do?
5. Before heading out
Few tips before heading out,
- Pack light. Unless you are prepared to pay for coin operated storage locker, otherwise you will be carrying whatever you bring for the whole day (be it back pack, hand bag, camera bag etc.).
- All rides will have a pouch under your feet where you can place your personal belongings, but it is not very big.
- You may want to bring some snacks, especially if you are not ready to burn a hole in your wallet spending on food inside DisneySea.
- Note that for the Klook tickets, it doesn’t include the train connection from Maihama station to the park entrance (Disney Resort Line), which costs 520 yen return for adults, 260 yen for children.
6. Be there early, and stay through the night
Now, you are all ready to take on DisneySea. Your perfect DisneySea trip shouldn’t be wasted all in lines of long queue. I hope this ultimate guide will help you make the most out of your DisneySea visit.
The following is my actual itinerary,
|0820||Arrive at park entrance (40 mins before park opens)|
|0900||Park opens, we entered around 0910|
|0945||Take FP #1 for Tower of terror (time period 1045 to 1130 hrs)|
|1000||Standby queue for 20,000 Leagues under the sea|
|1045||Take FP #2 for Journey to the center of the Earth (time period 1305 to 1405 hrs)|
|1100||Use FP #1||Tower of terror|
|1130||Single rider for Indiana Jones|
|1145||King Triton’s concert|
|1310||Take FP #3 for Sinbad’s storybook voyage|
|1330||Use FP #2||Journey to the center of the Earth|
|1430||Big band beat|
|1515||Take FP #4 for Tower of terror|
|1530||Use FP #3||Sinbad’s storybook voyage|
|1715||Out of Shadowland|
|1800||Magic lamp theatre|
|1900||Use FP #4||Tower of terror|
If I can do it, you can too! Looking forward to hear your stories!