Planning When to Go.

Deciding when to go is an important part of planning. There are a few things to take into consideration when making this decision. Crowds, weather, special events…

Crowds

Crowd levels vary according to many different criteria. You can bet that any day during the summer will be packed, as will any day during winter break or spring break. But there are other times, too.
The best time to visit would be when crowds are the thinnest, but sometimes that is not possible. If you are flexible with planning, you can definitely find a decent time to go. Certain months are generally less-crowded than others. January 2 – Presidents Week, Week after Labor Day through a week before Thanksgiving, and early December. Every weekend will be more crowded than a mid-week day. It can actually vary from day to day based on Extra Magic hours, too!

Weather

Weather can be unpredictable, but there are certain times of the year that you can pretty much guarantee that it will be hot and humid. The hurricane season can be pretty stormy, but some years it’s quite calm. The average temperature during the late fall through early spring is in the 70s.
The warmer months average between 80-90 degrees, which doesn’t sound too bad -until you factor in the high humidity. It can be really uncomfortable most days during the summer/early fall. This time of year they usually have afternoon thunderstorms, too, which adds to the fun. Wintertime in Florida is pretty calm for the most part. 60-70 degrees during the day.

Special Events

On any given day there is probably some special event going on. Some will impact you, some wont. Some you will want to participate in, some you wont.

Can’t possibly list all the special events here, so please check the Disney website for up-to-the-date event listings. Some of the most popular are the Epcot Flower and Garden Festival held each Spring, Food & Wine Festival held each fall, Not-So-Scary Halloween Party, Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party, various marathons, various Christmas holiday celebrations, and many tours and other events.

Holidays

Any major holiday will be more crowded than a normal day, but some are much more crowded. Of course you are working around your kids school schedule, or the time available for you to take off work, and you may not have much flexibility. There are strategies to help when you visit the parks during a holiday.
The week between Christmas and New Years is crazy crowded. Parks fill to capacity, and to be honest – it’s not that enjoyable. Spring break is also super crowded! If a holiday like Labor Day falls on a Monday, that will impact crowds for a couple days prior and a couple days after. People say going a full week after any given holiday will be a way to avoid holiday crowds.

Park Hours

Another planning tool is the Park Hours listing. If you want to spend a lot of time in the parks, you dont want to plan your vacation during a time when they close early. Check out the Disney website park hours listing for the most accurate and up-to-date hours for any particular day. Keep in mind, the hours are subject to change, so check them often.

  • Typical Magic Kingdom hours for Late Winter (January)
  • Typical Magic Kingdom hours for Early Spring (April)
  • Typical Magic Kingdom hours for mid-summer (July)
  • Typical Magic Kingdom hours for Fall (October)

Next step – Tickets!

Not as many choices, but there still are decisions to be made!

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