a better way to wait

William Liao
2 min readJan 5, 2022

Waiting has always been a quintessential part of the Disney Park experience.

Whether getting on a ride or grabbing food, you usually have to wait close to an hour in a physical line, if not longer.

The price to experience the park’s amenities isn’t just temporal; the limitations a customer agrees to by waiting in a physical line also run the gamut: you can’t explore other parts of the park, you can’t grab a snack (yet another line), and you can’t sit down. Your hands are tied.

In an era where so much technology is available, you might be thinking that there’s a better solution to the stone-age problem of waiting in a physical line.

And indeed, there is: Disney launched a service called Disney Genie in December of 2021 that allows users to preorder food at certain locations and secure a spot in the digital line so that you only need to show up for the ride when you’re close to the ‘front.’

For all practical purposes, you’re still getting in a line — you’re still waiting. The difference, though (a major one), is that you can now do other things while you wait.

Waiting itself isn’t necessarily the primary source of pain; it’s the inability to do anything else.

The magazines in the lobby, the arcade outside the theater, and the peanuts at the bar are not accidental designs.

If you require space from your customers, the happiest will probably be those that feel like they have a choice of how to fill it in.



William Liao

Taiwanese American, daily blogger of ideas about impactful work in service of others, photographer (ephemera.photography)