On Tuesday, the Anaheim parks began enforcing the 60-minute window on each ticket.
For more than a decade, Disneyland and Disney California Adventure have issued passes for certain attractions, allowing visitors to wait in a shorter line by returning within a designated 60-minute window.
But savvy visitors knew that employees laxly enforced the hour window stamped onto Fastpasses, letting guests board rides with the passes even after the time expired. Not anymore.
Starting Tuesday, the parks began requiring visitors to use Fastpasses within the hour period. Earlier this month, the parks put up signs at the rides to remind guests to return during the time window.
"As more guests take advantage of Disney Fastpass service, we want to offer everyone the same opportunity to use this popular service," Kevin Rafferty Jr., a Disneyland Resort spokesman, said in a statement.
Fastpasses are available at 13 rides.
Visitors scan their entrance tickets into machines that print out Fastpasses with a time to return, for example, between 1:30 and 2:30 p.m. Visitors can get only one Fastpass at a time. When the window expires, they can get a Fastpass for another ride.
Fastpasses for the extremely popular Radiator Springs Racers in Cars Land have regularly run out by early morning, but some visitors waited until night to use them. The Anaheim parks have about 1 million annual-pass holders, many savvy enough to know about the lax enforcement.
Attendance at the Anaheim parks appears to have dramatically increased since the June opening of Cars Land in Disney California Adventure.
In Florida, Walt Disney World began enforcing the Fastpass time windows about a year ago.
Locally, the switch had mixed reactions.
Emmanuel Elefante of Torrance figured enforcement will mean that the Fastpass lines don't get clogged.
Jenn Fujikawa of Los Angeles, who visits the parks twice a week, said the leeway on Fastpass times had been helpful, especially with children's schedules and unexpected waits in food lines.
"I understand why they are doing it, but it's definitely going to change up the way I plan out my own day at the park," Fujikawa said in an email.