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Animal Kingdom Gets Centralized FASTPASS Tests

7/24/09 Disney is testing out a new, centralized FASTPASS distribution system at our favorite park. The FASTPASS kiosks for It's Tough to be a Bug!, which haven't been operating for several months now, have been tagged with the logos for three of the theme park's remaining FASTPASS attractions - Expedition Everest, Dinosaur, and Kilimanjaro Safaris.

The early word on the service is mixed. Obviously, the ability to grab a FASTPASS on Discovery Island beats running - I mean, walking - to the far corners of the park. This is ideal for those on hand at park opening, as we recommend getting a FASTPASS for either Everest or the Safaris on the way to Dinoland U.S.A., so eliminating the extra trip really saves time and energy.

However, a drawback is that the FASTPASS return time is not posted. This is not a deal breaker first thing in the morning, but in the afternoon, it could cause problems. For example, at 12:30 an Everest FASTPASS may have a return time of 4:30, but you were planning on leaving the park before the parade. Since you can't see the return time before getting the FASTPASS, you might lock yourself out of getting a FASTPASS for the Safaris until 2:30, at which time they will be gone (or have a similarly late return window). Of course, if there's someone else in the queue ahead of you, you can always ask. Don't be shy.

No word on the permanence of this test. The feature is not on the guide map, so it might be only temporary for the busy season.

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