How to Deal with runDisney Disappointment


This week was a much-anticipated time in the runDisney community as it was the signup for the 30thAnniversary marathon weekend. For those who don’t know about runDisney, this included signup for a 5k, 10k, half marathon, marathon, Goofy Race and a Half Challenge, Dopey Challenge, and the Castaway Cay Challenge. Leading up to today, many in the running community were anticipating quick sell-outs due to the anniversary year and COVID shut down of races for previous races so of course the signup process went as disastrously as you think.

The race was supposed to open at 10am Eastern Time. By 9:40, some of the registrations links were live, and people could click in. By 10am, there was an apparent problem. For those not already in the queue, the page crash error appeared, and those in the queue were kept there but had no approximate wait time. 



This continued for two and a half hours until the new registration time was given of 12:30 Eastern with a message from runDisney to stay in the queue. Unfortunately the time you were added to the queue seemed to mean nothing, and all races sold out quickly. How did I fare? I was able to add the Dopey Challenge for myself and my husband, add my payment info, and hit submit… just to get a pop up that it sold out. 

The lesson here? My husband held me back, and I would be running through Walt Disney World if I only signed up myself. All joking aside, it was so disappointing to make it that far (and long) just to find out you’re not in the race, and I know I’m not the only one who had that. While I wish Disney technology performed better today, I know IT issues can’t always be avoided. So tonight I’ll drown my disappointment in a drink, but tomorrow I’ll move on and hope runDisney fixes their issues before the next race. 

For those like me that didn’t make the cut, remember that races normally pop open randomly, so keep checking the site. I wish Disney kept a waitlist for those who basically signed up only to find out it was sold out (to the point where cards were charged and then refunded). However, Disney is a business and as long as races sell out, they are achieving what they want.

If the luck doesn’t pan out for you this year, remember there is always next year (or next race if you’re not set on the marathon distance). Ever since the pandemic when the world shut down, it’s hard for me to have that “there’s always next year” mentality, but I do think we’re in a better spot. 

Finally, if we don’t get in I think we all can think about what we can do with all the extra money we have that we would have spent. RunDisney races are expensive! So I already told my husband we should book a different trip this year instead. 

My friends keep saying they can’t believe there are enough crazy people like me that want to run 48.6 miles to make it sell out, but they haven’t done a runDisney race. I never thought I’d ever consider running a marathon (let alone 48.6 miles in 4 days,) but here I am fighting for my chance to fork over an insane amount of money to do so. RunDisney races are such a fun experience, and though I’m disappointed, I have hope that I’ll get the chance to experience the Dopey Challenge one day.  


Sara is a Marketing Specialist by day, but her true passion is writing. She's been a freelance writer for 11 years and uses that side hustle money for traveling with her husband and three young children.

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