Are you planning a Disney World family vacation? There is so much to see and do at Disney World’s Hollywood Studios. Here are tips for families visiting Hollywood Studios.
11 Tips for Families Visiting Hollywood Studios
1. Book Savi’s Workshop ASAP
If your family are big Star Wars fans and your main objective for visiting Hollywood Studios is to do everything Star Wars then you need to get yourself on the list for Savi’s Workshop to build custom lightsabers. Savi’s Workshop is an experience- you will be ushered into a secret workshop where you will build your custom lightsaber.
Walk-ins are not accepted and reservations are hard to come by. You need to book as soon as you buy your Disney World tickets. Reservations typically sell out.
It may seem like a hefty price tag at $220 for a custom lightsaber but it is worth the experience. When you go to Hollywood Studios Galaxy’s Edge, you will soon learn that lightsabers are expensive. Legacy Lightsabers start at $150 so a $220 price tag for building custom lightsabers will feel like a good deal!
2. Book Build a Droid ASAP
Building a Droid at Droid Depot is another experience not to be missed if your family is big on Star Wars. Your kids will enjoy building their own custom Astromech droid. It’s not cheap to build a droid. But for $100, I think it is worth it. The experience is a lot of fun plus you will bring home a high-quality remote-controlled droid.
Due to its popularity, Build a Droid is another Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge experience that needs to book in advanced. I suggest you make your reservations right after you buy your Disney World tickets.
3. Buy the Star Wars Rise of the Resistance Individual Lightning Lane
Star Wars Rise of the Resistance is the most popular ride at Hollywood Studios. It is a next-generation trackless dark ride that should not be missed. If you plan to wing it by waiting in line at the Standby Line for Star Wars Rise of the Resistance- don’t!
Standby Line for Star Wars Rise of the Resistance is typically over 100 minutes long (2-3 hours of wait time). It is worth buying the Individual Lightning Lane pass for Star Wars Rise of the Resistance. At $15 per person per ride, it is worth the Individual Lightning Lane purchase because it will save you hours of standing in line!
Know that the individual Lightning Lane for Star Wars Rise of the Resistance sells out by mid/late morning. You need to buy it as soon as it’s available for you to buy. If you are a Disney World resort guest, you can buy individual Lightning Lane starting at 7 am (set your alarm!). If you are not staying at Disney World Resort, you can buy individual Lightning Lane when Hollywood Studios opens (set an alarm for this). You don’t want to regret not buying it and being stuck in line for hours. Or worst, going home without riding Star Wars Rise of the Resistance!
Check out our Beginner’s Guide to Disney World’s Lightning Lane and Is It Worth It to Buy Lighting Lane at Disney World?
4. Buy Disney Genie+ Lightning Lane at Hollywood Studios
If you are on the fence about whether to buy Disney Genie+ Lighting Lane for Hollywood Studios or not- buy it! It is worth it to pay the $15 per person per day for Disney Genie+ Lightning Lane. Hollywood Studios has some of the most popular rides at Disney World. Standby lines for popular rides like Millennium Falcon: Smuggler’s Run and Slinky Dog Dash are really long. Time is money at Disney- your $15 will be worth it if you can save a few hours with Lightning Lane at Hollywood Studios!
Check out my Hollywood Studios Lightning Lane Tips and Strategies
5. Build a Lightsaber at Tatooine Traders
If you can’t get a reservation to build a lightsaber at Savi’s Workshop or if you think the $220 Savi’s Workshop price tag is too high, you can build a custom lightsaber at Tatooine Traders. The custom lightsaber at Tatooine Traders is only $30 which is a lot less expensive than Savi’s Workshop. Tatooine Traders is not located in Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge, it is a gift shop in Hollywood Studios next to Star Tours.
Know that you will be getting a lower-quality lightsaber and the experience is not authentic Star Wars. If you have young children, you can probably get away with building customer lightsabers at Tatooine Traders. But for diehard Star Wars fans, this is a poor substitute for Savi’s Workshop.
6. Wake Up Early to Start Booking Lightning Lane Reservations at 7 am for Hollywood Studios
Lightning Lane reservations for popular rides at Hollywood Studios do sell out. Slinky Dog Dash, Millennium Falcon: Smuggler’s Run, Star Wars Rise of the Resistance typically sell out. You need to set your alarm and book the Lightning Lane for these rides at 7 am.
I suggest you buy Star Wars Rise of the Resistance Lightning Lane as soon as you can (7 am for Disney Resort guests and when the park opens for non-Disney Resort guests). Then book lightning lane reservations at 7 am for Slinky Dog Dash. After that wait, 2 hours after the park opens to book your second lightning lane reservation- Millennium Falcon: Smuggler’s Run. Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway Lightning Lane can also go quickly so book that as your 3rd Lightning Lane option. Or get on the single rider line for Millennium Falcon and book Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway as your 2nd Lightning Lane reservations.
7. Go to Backlot Express or ABC Commissary for Unlimited Soda and Coffee Refills
Unlimited soda refills are a big plus when it’s hot out and you need a break from your physically demanding theme park workout. Backlot Express and ABC Commissary are two quick-service restaurants at Hollywood Studios that has self-serve unlimited soda and coffee refills. For Star Wars fans, both restaurants are located outside Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge but it may be worth one meal there just for the unlimited beverage refills. Plus both restaurants have indoor air-conditioned seating! And there is plenty of seating at both restaurants. Get the Wookie Cookie at Backlot Express- buy one for the whole family to share!
8. Don’t Miss Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway
Don’t miss Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway at Hollywood Studios. It is a family-friendly trackless, dark ride that is a lot of fun. It’s similar to Star Wars Rise of the Resistance but Mickey-themed!
9. Download Disney Play App to play Star Wars: Datapad
Download Disney Play App at home or in your hotel before you go to Hollywood Studios. Your kids will enjoy exploring Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge using the Disney Play App. They can translate Aurebesh signs throughout Black Spire Outpost, scan objects and even hack droids and devices using the App. My 10-year-old son happily scanned and played with the Star Wars: Datapad.
10. Food at Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge is Not the Most Kid-Friendly
Once you try the food at Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge you will realize that it’s not the most kid-friendly fare. Some adults may also find the Star Wars Galaxy Edge food a little “different”.
My kids were not big fans of Ronto Wraps which are hotdogs with slaw wrapped in Pita bread. At Docking Bay 7, the food offering is a bit too “fancy” with too many spices and vegetables. My son did like the Fried Chicken Tip Yip meal, which is basically cube-shaped Fried Chicken with plain white rice.
Even the drinks at Hollywood Studio’s Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge are a little too unique- the green and blue milk at Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge were too floral and fruity for our taste. I’m not saying you don’t try the food, but if you want more kid-friendly fare, venture outside Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge (especially if you have picky eaters!)
11. Preferred Parking is Not Worth it at Hollywood Studios
If you thinking of upgrading to preferred parking at Hollywood Studios- don’t. Preferred Parking is not worth it at Hollywood Studios. The standard parking at Hollywood Studios gets you pretty close to the Hollywood Studios entrance. In fact, you can just walk from Standard Parking to the Hollywood Studios entrance (no tram needed).
Check out my Disney World Tips for Families:
Tips for Families Visiting Epcot
Tips for Families Visiting Magic Kingdom
Tips for Families Visiting Animal Kingdom
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