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Disney During Peak Season is Overrated, and This is Why


Original Poster
By Brooke Schuldt, Jul 28, 2016
WDWMAGIC Contributor

As a former cast member, I have been lucky enough to experience 365 days of Disney Parks magic. That’s right, I have been on Walt Disney property for every major holiday or travel time, and I’m going to tell you something that you may not hear from any other Disney lover.

I hate being in the parks during peak season.

Don’t get me wrong, there is nothing quite like seeing the parks dressed up for Christmas, or trick-or-treating in the Magic Kingdom. All of the guide books, travel specials, and Facebook photos from your co-worker’s recent trip to the parks will have you believing that you should be spending your holidays, summers, and spring breaks with Mickey Mouse. But there are really important, annoying side effects to Disney peak season travel that your co-worker didn’t photograph, and they could change how you plan your next Disney trip.

Continue reading at http://www.wdwmagic.com/articles/28...-peak-season-is-overrated-and-this-is-why.htm


Well-Known Member
We did do Magic Kingdom once for Christmas and once for New Years eve. It was crazy, we knew it would be but since we have been there more than 40 times we didnt care if we didnt ride everything. But yes i would not do it again. Go Jan 3 or 4 and it's great or the first 2 weeks of December. But I have to say we were there in Mid May and right before labor day this year and the parks seem slow.


New Member
This coming Christmas will be the second time visiting during the holiday season, the last time being Two years ago. Obviously, we know what we are in for. However, I'll be there for 3 weeks and my two kids will be there for 17 days, so we get some slower time in January to ride more rides. We have AP's, so there is no direct cost for admission to the parks. We have passes that include the water parks, so we will use them 1-2 days(unless the water is really cold). I'm not taking them out of school for 1-2 weeks to go to Disneyworld. This time, the 10 year old will miss 2 days to start the second semester and the one in college won't miss any classes. We are staying off site, so we can escape the crowd in the Disney bubble for much of the day. Having said all of this, more than likely, this will be our last time visiting during the Christmas rush. Twice is enough. We will have a great time because we know what to expect.


Well-Known Member
Agreed! My parents were teachers, so my childhood visits were always during a major holiday/vacation season, often Easter week (and back then, peak crowds were nothing compared with today's!). We had a wonderful time during those vacations, but it required a great deal of effort and planning, and a willingness to be up at the crack of dawn every morning.

Now that I'm an adult and able to schedule Disney vacations during the school year, I've seen the other side of Disney crowds, and I could never go back. Why pay more to visit during a peak time, and do less?


Well-Known Member
We always swore by scheduling our annual trip the second week of December. Weekdays during that time were great to be in the parks and experience wait times that were 10-20 minutes. That is not the case any longer. I've seen it start to get busier at that time around four years ago. Now we need to schedule our trips around our kids' college schedule which leaves us in a predicament. Last year we did the week after New Year's right before the kids went back to school. It wasn't a smart thing to do. Everyone else is still on their school breaks at that time so it was quite crowded. There just isn't a downtime anymore.


Well-Known Member
Totally agree with this article. Going to Disney on Christmas... hah. You think I would want to be stuck in this?

I couldn't imagine being there on Christmas. That is more like an 11 or 12 on the touringplans out of 10 scale. We have been some busy days, one or two 10/10's. Probably most crowded I've seen was the last season of the Osborne lights. Navigating with my mom in a wheelchair and my two young daughters was tricky. Thankfully we didn't need to move much.

The crowds around Hogwarts Castle for the Christmas projection show were quite intense, but Universal did a good job directing traffic into and out, and they did the shows every 15 or 20 minutes, so people were not there for long.


Well-Known Member
Christmas week and NYE is great if you’re a Disney pro and set your expectations accordingly. If you only go once a year or less I would never recommend it.
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Active Member
Would prefer to attend on off-peak times...but with kids in school, have limited options...like most of the others visiting during peak season.

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