It's one of the most eagerly-anticipated attractions in Disneyland's history. For years before it opened, fans were hyped for Star Wars: Galaxy's edge and the theme park responded accordingly anticipating massive crowds and investing large sums of money to ensure not only a thrilling experience for visitors, but one that would accommodate the expected crowds. Now that Galaxy's Edge is open to all visitors -- as opposed to those with reservations which had been the case for three weeks after it's opening in late May -- however, the attraction isn't exactly seeing the crowds Disneyland expected.
According to AZ Central, crowds for Galaxy's Edge since its wide opening on June 24 have been lighter than expected, so much so that the virtual queue created to handle expected high demand has only been activated a few times. That means that the park has been open without limits and the one ride in Galaxy's Edge, Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run has even had what the report calls manageable wait times -- between 30 and 60 minutes.
With all the anticipation and hype for Galaxy's Edge, it begs the question -- what gives? By all reports and accounts, the park is an exciting one with a lot of details that fans of the Star Wars universe will enjoy but so will the more casual park goer. The answer ultimately may not have anything to do with Galaxy's Edge itself, but rather matters of timing. The report suggests that part of the lower turnout may simply be a product of expectation of how popular the attraction was going to be. That means that many visitors may have been waiting for the initial crowds to subside in order to maximize their own enjoyment. Others may be waiting for the Rise of the Resistance attraction to open. Rise of the Resistance will take riders on a Star Destroyer and doesn't yet have an opening date, though it is expected later this year.
There's also the financial consideration as well. Disneyland's ticket prices increased significantly ahead of Galaxy's Edge opening this year, with ticket costs inflating by up to 25 percent. For some, that may have led to a shift in what tickets they purchased, and the least expensive annual pass options aren't valid through July and most of August.
Of course, while things may be a little lighter than expected now, that doens't mean things aren't still busy and popular, though perhaps not in the ways Disneyland would prefer. Items from Galaxy's Edge, such as coasters from Oga's Cantina and cards handed out to guests on Smugglers Run that determine your position on the Millennium Falcon have all been popping up on eBay. It was reported by The OCR last month that even menus for Oga's Cantina had popped up on the auction site.
"The wildly popular Oga's Cantina has been the hardest hit," The OCR notes. "The postcard-sized cards visitors receive when they return to join the cantina's virtual queue are now showing up on eBay bundled with packages of other Galaxy's Edge loot. Oga's name is spelled out on the card in a stylish Aurebesh font. Hosts are supposed to collect the cards as patrons enter the bar."
The outlet added, "The laminated menus for Oga's Cantina started showing up on eBay for $40 during the Disneyland employee previews before regular visitors were even allowed into the park. Oga's employees now hand out the ragged-edge menus more selectively and collect them more quickly once you've placed an order."
Are you surprised by the lighter-than-expected crowds at Disneyland's Galaxy's Edge? Let us know in the comments below.