TRON Lightcycle / Run -difference between day and night and how to ride and experience both!
Updated: Apr 13
On April 4th, the new coaster in Magic Kingdom officially opened and Castle Coaches Travel was there to experience it all! With the attraction came new Tron-themed food, tons of fun TRON merchandise, and a new interactive experience called TRON Identity Program. With the TRON Identity Program you will be able to customize a “Program” action figure that looks and sounds like you and an identity chip that will interact with other merchandise as well! This includes the Identity Discs and Remote Control Lightcycles. But one of the coolest things we got to experience was the lit canopy that shines in blues and oranges at night, representing Team Blue and Team Orange, while the lightcycles speed by underneath. So does that mean that TRON is a much better experience at night? We were lucky enough to ride a few times so we are bringing you all the details.
Seeing as the canopy is only lit up at night, you might be thinking that you have to ride it late — but there are actually a few things to keep in mind when trying to figure out when you should ride.
Riding TRON at Night
We were able to ride TRON a total of three times, twice during the day and once at night. While both were great, we preferred night. Why? The lit up canopy! The lit-up canopy is so pretty, and getting to ride at night comes with a few benefits. The portion of the ride that goes under the canopy is thrilling where you get to see the hexagon lights follow you as you battle Team Orange under a color-changing canopy. It is definitely a fun thing to get to see, but keep in mind it is a super-quick experience (like few seconds quick). If you time it out right, you might also get to see the fireworks while you ride! There’s a clear view of the castle through the canopy, so while it would be a quick window that you view them — it would be pretty magical! Another reason we enjoyed riding at night....the two PhotoPass opportunities! You can physically hold an Identity Disk and partake in a fun Magic Shot recreating the famous TRON: Legacy poster pose. The Light Disc that you pose with lights up at night, so it has much more of the TRON vibe that you’ll see throughout the indoor portion of the ride. If you are only able to ride during the day, no worries....you can still stand under the canopy and get the night-time photos, even if you’re not riding it then. Additionally, you can relive your race through the computerized world of TRON when you preview an onboard photo and video automatically linked to your My Disney Experience account through one of the following methods:
Use your eligible mobile device, enable Bluetooth for the My Disney Experience app before riding, ensure you’ve logged into the My Disney Experience app sometime earlier that day, and keep your device out of low power mode. Make sure your mobile device boards your Lightcycle with you and is safely stored in the small Lightcycle compartment to use this method.
Wear a MagicBand or MagicBand+ that’s linked to your account.
The ride photo and video will look the exact same no matter what time of day you ride.
Riding TRON During the Day
Even though we preferred TRON at night, this coaster is thrilling no matter when you ride it. Especially since the outdoor portion is so quick, what you see is what you get, so it might not make sense to rearrange your day to ride at night. The ride starts indoors, so you’ll launch out into the sunshine after being inside for a while, which means your eyes might need to adjust to the bright atmosphere and then adjust again when the ride goes back inside.
Can I Pick When to Ride?
So let’s talk about how you actually get to ride TRON. There is no standby line, so strategy is involved and important. You’ll have 2 options to ride — Virtual Queue and Individual Lightning Lane Purchase. You will have 2 chances during the day to request to join the Virtual Queue, sometimes three on nights with Extended Hours for Deluxe Resort Guests. Important to remember, guests must have a valid theme park admission and a theme park reservation for Magic Kingdom to join the virtual queue.
Virtual Queue Times to Know
7 a.m.: Can join from anywhere onsite or offsite
1 p.m.: Must be in Magic Kingdom to join and park hopping doesn't start until 2pm!
6 p.m.: Only available to Deluxe Resort Guests and on nights when Magic Kingdom is hosting Extended Evening Theme Park Hours (currently Wednesday)
Because you are requesting to join the Virtual Queue, you don’t get to decide when you’ll ride and sometimes you might not even get to at all. Spots fill up fast! While requesting a spot during the 1PM slot is more likely to get you a later time, there’s no guarantee! Not to mention, it would be risky to wait to request one then, since you might miss your chance and then be out of options. However, if you’re staying at a Deluxe Disney Resort, Disney Deluxe Villa, or select other resorts, you’ll have an additional chance to get a spot at 6PM on days when Extended Evening Hours are offered at Magic Kingdom — so this is absolutely something to consider when booking your resort! If riding at night is important to you, this might be a solution. Another option to ride at night is with the purchase of an Individual Lightning Lane through Disney Genie+. This paid option offers more flexibility, as you will be able to select an actual time slot that works for you. While the virtual queue opens up to all guests with a Magic Kingdom theme park reservation and valid theme park admission starting at 7 a.m. (no matter if a guest is staying onsite or offsite), Individual Lightning Lane purchases begin for onsite guests ONLY starting at 7 a.m. Offsite guests can’t book an Individual Lightning Lane until park opening, which is usually one hour after onsite guests have already snagged all, if not most, pay-to-ride availability. Another very important factor to consider when booking your resort. Opening week, Individual Lightning Lane was $20 per person and sold out within minutes. Pricing is always subject to change, especially during busier times of the year. Important to keep in mind that the virtual queue system is completely separate from Individual Lightning Lanes, meaning if you can book both, you could end up riding TRON twice. Potentially three times if you’re an eligible Deluxe Resort guest with access to Extended Evening Theme Park Hours.
Ultimately, though, we loved TRON during the day and at night — either way, it’s an incredible experience and one we can't wait to do again. We know you won't be disappointed if your only opportunity to check out this new attraction is during the day.
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