Early to bed, early to Rise of the Resistance. That’s how the old adage goes, right? Last month, Walt Disney World debuted Rise of the Resistance, their most immersive attraction yet, a captivating combination of four ride systems that transports guests to a galaxy far, far away. If you’re planning an upcoming trip to Disney’s Hollywood Studios, then you’ve likely questioned how you are going to obtain a coveted boarding group to join the rebel resistance. The good news is that you do not need to become one with the Force to snag your opportunity to experience Rise of the Resistance.

The Basics

The first order (see what I did there?) of business in acquiring a boarding group for Rise of the Resistance is to plan your arrival to Hollywood Studios. The attraction’s virtual queue will begin precisely at park open, and you must be physically located within the park to gain access to a boarding group. Currently, this process is the only way to experience Rise of the Resistance; there is no standby line nor access to a Fastpass for this attraction. Terms like “virtual queue” and “boarding group” might seem confusing at first, but if you stick with me for just a little longer, you’ll be able to Jedi master this process in no time.

The Process

A virtual queue is exactly as it sounds – you will find yourself waiting in a line to immerse yourself in the Rise of the Resistance storyline, but via a computerized system. And the order in which you are put into that queue is considered your boarding group, which will be denoted by a number. The quickest path toward securing a boarding group is to utilize the My Disney Experience app on your phone. Immediately upon opening the app, you should see a teaser that reads Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance – Access by Boarding Group. Click “Find Out More” and you’re set – this screen is saturated with information! As soon as the park officially opens, you will select “Join Boarding Group” and with a little luck, you’ll be assigned a boarding group number. As the day goes on, you will be able to view the current land status, the groups that are now boarding, and your own status.

Our Top Tips for You

Tip Number Obi-“One” – Rise and shine! You will want to arrive to Hollywood Studios early, but not too early. Plan to arrive at least an hour prior to official park open so you can accommodate any wait that might build up from bag check and the park entrance touchpoints. However, due to the virtual nature of the queue, arriving hours upon hours early may not be in your best interest as you simply need to be somewhere within the park to land that boarding group number. Being first to enter Hollywood Studios does not guarantee a lower boarding group number.

Tip Number Two – Speaking of when to enter the park, let’s talk about a tip for where to enter the park! After exiting the bag check lines, you will immediately file into line to scan yourself into the park. At this point in your rope drop journey, time is of the essence as you want to be in the park as quickly as possible to join a boarding group. So, keep in mind that multiple lines into the park exist and often the lines furthest to the right are shorter, which may get you in faster. Keep Skywalking your way to the right!

Tip Number Three – We’ve covered when and where to enter the park – next up is how. Since we’ve already discussed that arriving super early doesn’t necessarily equate to acquiring an earlier boarding group, then it should also be said that rushing toward the front isn’t necessary either. In contrast to a traditional Walt Disney World rope drop, being further into the park (and thus closer to Rise of the Resistance) is not going to aide your quest to experience the attraction any sooner than if you were standing behind hundreds of fellow Star Wars enthusiasts.

Tip Number Four –  If you don’t want to fight this battle solo, make sure you have connected via My Disney Experience with all members of your party prior to entering Hollywood Studios. Similar to the process you use when adding multiple guests to a Fastpass or dining reservation, once you choose “join boarding group”, you are able to add multiple members to your group. However, since time is of the essence when obtaining a boarding group, you will want to ensure you have linked with everyone before stepping into the park. As an extra note, everyone in your group must have scanned into Hollywood Studios to be eligible for your boarding group.

photo courtesy of Disney Parks

Hopefully, with this knowledge and a little luck, you can snag a Rise of the Resistance boarding group. Remember, once you’re in the virtual queue and have been assigned a group number, you are free to roam both inside and outside of Hollywood Studios enjoying other attractions and experiences until your boarding group’s return window opens. However, as there is no specific return time, be certain to periodically check the boarding group progress! May the Force be with you.