The holiday season is upon us, and this is a busy time for Walt Disney World!
There are dozens of celebrations to enjoy around the resort during the season, from everything from snacks to decorations and entertainment. And during the holidays, the parks will be fuller to the brim, so how do you avoid these crowds? We have the best tips!
First of all, you will want to make sure that the days of the park arrive early. We recommend that you arrive at the parks for the rope drop, ie 30-45 minutes before opening time. You may need to add a few extra minutes as a buffer if you go to Magic Kingdom and plan to park, as you will need to take Disney transportation from the TTC. If you’re one of the first to arrive, you’ll be one of the first to line up for the big attractions and start removing things from your to-do list!
Use the benefits of the resort
If you are staying at a Disney World Resort hotel, there are some benefits that you should definitely take advantage of. All guests of the resort have the opportunity to enter each theme park 30 minutes before each day with the new early entry to the theme park. And if you stay in a luxury resort, you can stay up late at Magic Kingdom and EPCOT on select nights, which will save you an extra two hours of time in the park!
Eat during rest hours
If you want to avoid congestion when you eat, you should first plan your meals for the “rested” hours of the day. This means that you should not go to lunch between 11:00 and 13:00 or dinner between 17:00 and 19:00. During these hours, the vast majority of people will be flooded with fast food stalls and snacks, and you may have to wait a while to receive your order.
If you want to dine at a table service restaurant, make sure you make reservations before you go. At this time, your options may be limited if you are looking for the holiday season. For those who eat fast service, we recommend that you place your mobile orders in the morning and only choose one hour later in the day for your meal time. These time windows will quickly disappear on busy days.
Avoid obvious work times
Some parks will be especially busy on certain days. For example, Magic Kingdom is always the busiest on Christmas Day, and Magic Kingdom and EPCOT are usually packed on New Year’s Eve. EPCOT will also be busy on the weekends during the festivals, as many locals come to enjoy dinner at the World Showcase.
Anticipate the crowds
Some areas of the parks will be busier than others, such as Fantasyland, Toy Story Land, Galaxy’s Edge, and Main Street, USA. so you may need to bookmark a place in advance during the holiday season.
When shopping for souvenirs, you’ll want to make some smart decisions, avoiding big stores like World of Disney and The Emporium if you can. Instead, shop at the park’s smaller stores or shop at your resort. You also want to avoid buying at the end of the day, because that’s when the stores will be more crowded.
You’ll also want to make use of the mobile payment feature that is now available in various park gift shops. With this addition, you’ll be able to skip the paylines and use your phone, leaving the store much faster!
Consider using Genie + and individual attraction selections
Disney’s new skipping line system can be very useful when you’re visiting for a busy time. It will cost you $ 15 a day to use Genie +, and selections of individual attractions have their own pay-per-trip prices, but it may be worth saving a significant amount of time on a busy day.
If you buy Genie +, be sure to sign in at 7 a.m. to make your first selection for the day. For selections of individual attractions, guests at the resort can shop at 7 a.m., but off-site guests will have to wait until the park opens. You definitely don’t want to miss out on these windows; otherwise, you’ll be left with fewer (and possibly less desirable) options.
These are the important things to know if you are going to Disney World during the busy holiday season! We’ll make sure you keep up to date with all the news from the crowd, so stay tuned to AllEars.
Click here to see the crowds we saw during Thanksgiving Week!
Have you ever been to Disney World for a vacation? Let us know in the comments!
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