Mickey in front of Castle
Credit: Disney

Good-bye 2021, Hello 2022!

As we head into the new year, we want to take a minute to say goodbye to 2021. We also want to say hello to 2022 as we prepare for the next 12 months.

In 2021 we said goodbye to a few of our favorites, but we are excited and hopeful for all that we will be saying hello to in 2022.

Credit: Mears

Goodbye Disney’s Magical Express, Hello New Transportation Choices

A big goodbye in 2021 is to Disney’s Magical Express. This free transportation service from Orlando International Airport has been taking Guests to and from the airport and their Walt Disney World Resort for many years now.

We are sad to say goodbye to this free service as it will no longer be provided starting January 1st, 2022.

As we move into 2022, however, we are looking forward to saying hello to new transportation options. A few companies such as Mears Connect have stepped up to offer transportation services for Guests.

Although none of these services are free or offered directly by Disney, we look forward to seeing how they work for Guests in 2022.

Disney Genie Logo

Credit: Disney

Good-bye FastPass+, Hello Disney Genie

A big surprise came when Disney announced that FastPass+ would not return to the Theme Parks but would be replaced by Disney Genie+.

We are extremely sad to say goodbye to this free service that allowed us to book three rides per ticket day in our Theme Park of choice.

As we move into 2022, we will say hello to Disney Genie, Disney Genie+, and Individual Lightning Lanes even more. Although they have been around since October, many of us will experience this new function for the first time during our 2022 vacations to Walt Disney World.

Guests will need to determine if they want to add Disney Genie+, a $15/person/day cost, to their tickets for access to over 40 Lightning Lanes in the four Theme Parks.

Another decision will be if Guests want to purchase Individual Lightning Lanes for specific rides such as Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance over in Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

As we said goodbye to FastPass+ and hello to Disney Genie+ and all it has to offer, we are taking time to learn the new system and how it can help add magic to our upcoming 2022 vacations.

Credit: Paula K

Goodbye Primeval Whirl, Hello Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind

When Disney’s Animal Kingdom closed back in 2020, we didn’t know that Primeval Whirl would close for good.

Even when the Park reopened in July 2020, this roller coaster ride found in DinoLand U.S.A. remained closed. It wasn’t too long after that Disney announced that Primeval Whirl would remain closed for good.

Quickly we saw the ride taken down and the vehicles removed. Now there are construction walls all around what used to be the ride location.

Although it is always sad to say goodbye to a ride, we are excited that 2022 will be bringing a new ride in Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind.

Disney has announced that this new roller coaster in EPCOT will open in the summer of 2022. We have seen a lot of progress lately and are hopeful that this timeframe will be achieved without issues.

This new coaster will bring the first ever reverse launch to a Disney Theme Park. It will also be an omnicoaster, which will rotate Guests 360-degrees to keep them in the action at all times.

We are thrilled to have a new attraction coming to EPCOT and can’t wait to experience it!

Goodbye Finding Nemo: The Musical, Hello New Finding Nemo: The Big Blue and Beyond

We are big fans of Finding Nemo: The Musical in Disney’s Animal Kingdom. It has been missed since the Park reopened in July 2020.

It was disappointing to hear that the original show is not returning; however, when Disney quickly announced that an updated show is in the works, it gave us hope for 2022.

Disney announced that Finding Nemo:  The Big Blue & Beyond will be an updated musical that features our beloved friends from ‘Finding Dory’.

We have been assured that some of our favorite songs will return, as will the amazing puppets.

Although we are sad to see the original version leave, we are excited to see what the updated show brings in 2022.

Credit: Disney

Hello 2022!

We are excited about all the new and magical experiences coming to Walt Disney World in 2022. There are many things to look forward to as we head into the new year.

Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser will welcome Guests on board starting in March, 2022. This all inclusive experience will be one of a kind. Guests will become part of the ‘Star Wars’ universe as they travel to a galaxy far, far away.

Also returning in 2022 are numerous entertainment options. Fantasmic will return to Disney’s Hollywood Studios, bringing nighttime excitement to the Park once again.

Over in Magic Kingdom, we can look forward to the Festival of Fantasy Parade, as well as Mickey’s Friendship Faire returning.

This is just some of the excitement coming to Walt Disney World in  2022. What are you looking forward to the most?

About Jennifer Retzlaff

My name is Jennifer Retzlaff and I became a lifelong Disney fan during my first trip to Walt Disney World in 6th grade. From that moment, Disney became a big part of my life. I live in Iowa with my husband and two kids who are growing up too quickly for my liking. I started introducing my love for Disney early to my family with a Disney honeymoon and then trips when our youngest of 18 months. Since then, our family has been to Walt Disney World over five times and we continue to plan and dream for the next trip. I love the magic that Disney brings to people through the theme parks, cruises, adventures and movies they create. As a teacher, I try to bring that magic into my classroom to help kids believe that “If You Can Dream It, You Can Do It.” I recently reached a dream of mine as I joined Magic Vacation Planner as a personal travel advisor. With this team, I can now help others plan magical vacations. As a passionate writer, I also have my own blog at magicalvacationsbyjen which is also where you can follow me on instagram for trip reviews along with tips and tricks for your next magical vacation.