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runDisney Registration: 5 Tips for Using the new runDisney Registration System

Race registrations for the runDisney 2019 race weekends were held back for quite some time as Disney changed its registration system from making use of Active.com to being handled fully within the runDisney site. Registrations finally started to roll in again with Marathon Weekend becoming available in late July, and now runDisney devotees everywhere are clutching their aching wallets as we play catch up with a quick succession of race weekend registration openings:

  • Marathon Weekend (January 9 to 13, 2019): Registration Open
  • Princess Half Marathon Weekend (February 21 to 24, 2019):
    • Early registration: August 2, 2018
    • General registration: August 7, 2018
  • Star Wars™ Virtual Half Marathon (January 3 to March 31, 2019):
    • Early registration: August 23, 2018
    • General registration: August 28, 2018
  • Star Wars™ Rival Run Weekend (April 4 to 7, 2019):
    • Early registration: August 23, 2018
    • General registration: August 28, 2018

Having been through Dopey challenge registration and early registration for all three Princess Half Marathon Weekend races, I’ve seen the good, the bad, and the ugly of the new system and wanted to take a minute to pass along what I could. Here are my top 5 tips for handling the new runDisney registration system:

  1. The queue opens early: They might fix this soon, but as of right now the online queue for registration seems to be opening about 10 minutes before registration officially starts. So whether you’re on the DVC early registration link, which you’ll find here, the annual passholder registration link, which you’ll find here, or the general registration link, which you’ll find on the runDisney page for the relevant race weekend, start clicking that “register now” button early and wait for the window to pop up that warns you not to close or refresh it or you’ll lose your place in the queue.
  2. The queue is quirky: Once you’re in that queue, the real fun starts. The Dopey registration queue window gave me an approximate wait time of 10 minutes from the minute that I was in and never changed until it went through and allowed me to register. The queue for Princess Race Weekend early registration did not give me a wait time, but then sat there stagnant from 11:50 until 12:25, when it finally went through. There seems to be no real rhyme or reason to who gets in first. If you think you’ve found yourself stuck on a stagnant queue screen, you might want to try opening the link in another browser, or even on your phone, to test your luck. I have friends that were waiting in queue for Princess Race Weekend early registration for 30+ minutes before giving another browser a try and getting in almost right away.
  3. You can now register for more than one race/more than one person at a time: This is one of the biggest perks of the new system. When runDisney race registrations were through Active.com, you had to register separately for each race and for each person in your party. The new system allows you to register and pay for multiple races and people at one time. This is huge for convenience – and also for getting the races that you want before they sell out – but it also makes it that much more important that you be online early for popular races. With the first comers able to register for every race and every person in one round, the races are bound to sell out faster in the first minutes.
  4. You can still add proof of time later: No surprise here, but note that the new system still allows you to add proof of time after your initial registration. This is an option that I usually take advantage of, both because I’m a bit stressed in that moment just to get the registration itself done and also because I want to give myself the chance to score a better proof of time before the deadline.
  5. You can now pay with a Disney gift card: This might be my favorite thing about the new system. Now that it’s on the Disney platform, you can pay for races with Disney gift cards. This is big because, if you plan ahead, you can take advantage of discounted Disney gift cards for payment. For example, if you have a Target Red Card you can use it to purchase Disney gift cards at a 5% discount. Stores like BJ’s and Sam’s Club also sell discounted Disney gift cards. One thing to note here, though: the new system does not appear to allow you to use more than one form of payment. So if you want to take advantage of this payment option, make sure you have a card in hand with enough money on it to cover the entire amount of the race registration. You can combine balances of multiple Disney gift cards at this link.

And that’s it for the good and not-so-good of the new system!! We’ll see how it changes as they work out the kinks. What runDisney events are you planning to run in 2019?? Comment below and let me know!!

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