For the most part, theme park hours are straightforward. There’s an open time—when guests are let in the park—and a closing time—when the last guests are allowed to line up for rides. But as with all things, Disney makes things a little more complicated, with changing hours and a variety of ways to get early and late access to the parks. In this post we discuss the typical hours at Hollywood Studios and how to access early and late hours at the park.
Typical Hours at Hollywood Studios
As with pretty much all of our content, we want to note that with multiple big changes happening at Hollywood Studios over the next several months—Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge opening (Aug. 29), Rise of the Resistance opening (Dec. 5), Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway opening (2020)—everything in the park will be in a large state of flux into mid-2020.
Hollywood Studios’s typical hours are 9AM to 9PM, but hours do vary. You can view the official Disney hours for Hollywood Studios by clicking this link.
Here’s what the schedule roughly looks like through the end of 2019 (again, you must consult the official Disney link to confirm the times for your day, these times can change on short notice).
Specific Ride Hours
Note that not all the attractions open and close with the park. For example, Muppet*Vision 3D often opens late and closes early.
There’s no way to predict ride opening times in advance other than to look at the ride hours in the days before your visit and assume they’ll stay the same. You can either check the My Disney Experience app yourself (clicking into an attraction will tell you its hours for today), or you can visit TouringPlans—the purple, “observed wait times” line will reveal when the right started and ended operations on that day.
It is really important that you check the closing times of anything you’re thinking about visiting late. You can check the closing times in the My Disney Experience app. You don’t want to plan to visit a ride in the last hour of the day only to get there and find it closed two hours early.
When To Arrive
We cover when to arrive at Hollywood Studios in our Hollywood Studios Rope Drop Strategy post. Because the arrival times are highly contingent on what rides you’re starting with, we recommend you read that post in full.
Staying Late at Hollywood Studios
Like all of Disney’s parks, just because Hollywood Studios closes at some time doesn’t mean you have to exit the park at that time.
The closing time is the when guests will stop being allowed to line up for rides. In most cases, you will be able to get in line for a ride right up until closing time. Because there can be exceptions to this—due to capacity issues or ride breakdowns—we don’t recommend you rely heavily on this. Rather, this is a good time for a “bonus ride” you would otherwise skip or a re-ride on something big.
While the last people are allowed into line for the rides at closing time, some stores will remain open and anyone still in the queue for a ride will get to ride and then leave. The stores at the front of the park will be open latest.
Depending on the precise schedules for the day, the nighttime shows Fantasmic! and Wonderful World of Animation may begin or end right around park close.
While Disney buses will run until the last guest leaves the park, they’ll do so on a significantly more limited schedule as it gets later, and the later exits almost always have to share buses.
Extra Hours Access to Hollywood Studios
There are several options for getting early or late access to Hollywood Studios.
We have a post dedicated specifically to Extra Extra Magic Hours at Hollywood Studios, occurring daily between September 1 and November 2.
Our Hollywood Studios rope drop strategy includes a discussion of Extra Magic Hours strategy. All the rides at the park—Millennium Falcon Smugglers Run, Slinky Dog Dash, Alien Swirling Saucers, Toy Story Mania!, Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster, Tower of Terror, and Star Tours—are open for Extra Magic Hours.
Remember, you must be a guest of a hotel with Extra Magic Hours access to take advantage of this perk. You also must have park admission for the day to use Extra Magic Hours.
Early Morning Magic — Toy Story Land
Early Morning Magic is a ticketed event that offers guests all-you-can-eat breakfast and access to the three Toy Story Land attractions before the park opens to regular guests. The event typically allows access to the park at 7:30AM on days with a 9AM open, and with breakfast served until 10AM.
Tickets are $79+tax for adults and $69+tax for children. You must also have regular park admission for the day in order to use Early Morning Magic. You’re basically paying for breakfast and the chance to avoid the hassle of fitting these rides into your FastPass+ and rope drop plans.
Early Morning Magic is not scheduled or expected to occur between September 1 and November 2, when the park has daily Extra Magic Hours. We expect it to return in some form after November 2, but this hasn’t been confirmed as of this update.
Hollywood Studios After Hours
Update: As of July 23, 2019, no future After Hours events at Hollywood Studios are scheduled.
For the evening hours, there is Hollywood Studios After Hours. Unlike Extra Magic Hours, this is not a perk offered to certain guests, but is instead a ticketed event held on select evenings. We reviewed Hollywood Studios After Hours here.
When it occurs, After Hours allows ticketed guests access to the park from 7PM to 3 hours after park close. You do not need regular park admission to access After Hours, you just won’t be allowed into the park until 7PM. Tickets cost around $130 per person and are available for purchase on the Disney World website.
The available attractions are: Slinky Dog Dash, Alien Swirling Saucers, Toy Story Mania!, Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster, Tower of Terror, Star Tours, and select character greetings.
WHAT IF I DON’T HAVE EXTRA HOURS ACCESS?
One question some people fail to consider is what to do if they don’t have extra hours access on a given day? Let’s go through the different extra hours events and how they impact ordinary guests.
Evening Extra Magic Hours, which mostly only occur at Epcot and Magic Kingdom these days, don’t need to be planned around if you don’t have them. You’ll simply have to leave the park near the scheduled closing time.
Similarly, After Hours events aren’t a huge problem. You’ll see an uptick in crowds when After Hours guests are allowed into the park, but by then you should mostly be through your itinerary for the day.
At Hollywood Studios, it’s really only morning Extra Magic Hours and Early Morning Magic that you have to be aware of.
Important Message For Visits August 29 Through November 2
This post is impacted by changes, some temporary and some permanent, at Walt Disney World beginning August 29. People visiting between August 29 and November 2 are highly encouraged to click here to read our dedicated post especially for those dates.
Planning Around Morning Extra Magic Hours at Hollywood Studios
Because guests with Extra Magic Hours will get in line for the big-name rides, guests without morning Extra Magic Hours won’t be able to rope drop these, and they’ll be walking into lines to start the day.
Through November 2, though, there’s no way to avoid Extra Magic Hours at Hollywood Studios, as they’ll be held daily. In short, we recommend guides without EMH target Slinky Dog Dash or maybe the pair of Tower of Terror and Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster to start the day, tabling Millennium Falcon Smugglers Run for mid-afternoon. We discuss this in our post on Extra Extra Magic Hours at Hollywood Studios.
Some sites advise against visiting parks with morning Extra Magic Hours at all if you don’t have Extra Magic Hours. We’re not that rigid, and we think your afternoon at a park with morning Extra Magic Hours will look more or less like any other afternoon.
Planning Around Early Morning Magic at Hollywood Studios
[Note: With Early Morning Magic not having occurred since Galaxy’s Edge opened, this section has not been updated.]
Early Morning Magic impacts your morning, but not completely in the way you expect. First, because most Early Morning Magic guests will ride first and then eat breakfast once the park opens to everyone else, we’ve never had a problem with those guests making lines in Toy Story Land longer right at rope drop.
The event does have two other side effects, though. First, lines for everything outside of Toy Story Land will increase much faster than usual because Early Morning Magic guests will head to those rides while the ordinary guests go to Toy Story Land.
Second, rope drop crowds from ordinary guests will typically be heavier than expected. This is because on most days, guests are let into the park before scheduled open. Since most guests come right around the opening time, you can often get two short waits in if you’re off the first ride before the park is scheduled to open.
On Early Morning Magic days, however, guests are not let onto rides early because that time is set aside for the Early Morning Magic guests. As a result, rope drop will be pushed until the scheduled park open, when crowds are high. By the time you’re off your first ride, all the lines will have grown substantially.
We only advise visiting on days with Early Morning Magic if you have FastPass+ for both Tower of Terror and Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster. Visiting with one of those is okay, but you’ll probably have a long wait at some point in the day. You’ll also want a full day at Hollywood Studios.
All Your Other Disney World Planning Questions Answered
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Just starting out? Check out our Walt Disney World planning guide! If you're still picking dates, we've got everything you need to know about Disney crowd calendars. For picking your hotel, check out our Walt Disney World hotels guide.
When it comes time to book we’ll help you find discount Disney World tickets. Decide whether you need a dining plan in our Complete Guide to Disney World Dining Plans! And at 180 days out it's time to book those Disney World Advance Dining Reservations!
Don't forget to master your Disney World FastPass+ strategy a few months in advance. We'll keep you out of long lines so you can maximize the magical time in the parks! We've got park-specific guides as well: Magic Kingdom FastPass, Epcot FastPass, Animal Kingdom FastPass, and Hollywood Studios FastPass.
Know what to ride with our guides to: Magic Kingdom rides, Hollywood Studios rides, Epcot rides, and Animal Kingdom rides! Plus learn about the water parks with our guide to Blizzard Beach and our guide to Typhoon Lagoon! And for some some fun prep, check out our Ranking of Every Ride at Walt Disney World.
Finally, before you head out, be sure to check out our to-the-point packing list, 10 essentials you forget to pack for every Disney trip. And if you're interested in saving, there's no better list than our 53 Ways to Save on your Disney trip from start to finish.