Flik card times are always lagging behind. If you get in line for Space Mountain at 4pm, wait an hour and get on the ride at 5pm, and a Cast Member scans your card, it registers that the wait time is an hour.
In reality, an hour is what the wait time was at 4pm when you got in line. What if no one got in line behind you? Even though you waited an hour, someone coming in the queue at 5pm would wait 0 minutes,
but the time would say 60 minutes still.
This normally isn't an issue because it is rare for no one to get in line behind you. This mostly comes into play during parade times for some rides (especially near the route) and during fireworks.
For example, let's say Wishes starts at 9pm. Starting at about 8pm, people stop getting in line because they don't want to miss the fireworks. At 9pm, Space Mountain will likely have a very,
very short wait time. However, the sign can still say 30-40 minutes because the time reflected on the sign is from 8:20 or 8:30. In other words, it's misleading.
The other times of the day when discrepancies are more noticeable are first thing at open and just before close.
In the early morning, using Space Mountain as an example again, the very first people going in will have a 0 minute wait. However, due to popularity, a large number of people run to Space Mountain as their first
thing to visit for the day. So, at 9:05am, when several hundred people have gotten in line, the sign out front says 5 minutes because of the wait the first people had, but the large number of people who have
gone in since have inflated the wait time to perhaps 30 minutes or more. Also, that first surge only lasts for a short while. After about 30 minutes, once the first rush is over, the wait time will go back down
to 5-10 minutes or so and then slowly climb throughout the day. So again, at 9:30, the wait time may say 30 minutes, but it will really be only 5.
Near closing time, Cast Members want to discourage people from getting in line. The longer the line at closing time, the longer they have to work. So, prior to park closing, you may see times of
45-60 minutes at Space Mountain when it is really a walk on.