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Disney world summer vs December trip...


New Member
Original Poster
So the family is thinking about taking a trip to Disney world in 2021. We did about 5 years ago to Disney so this would be our second trip. The first trip was fun but as you know, we made a lot of those first timer mistakes... lol. So we were talking about making another trip either in July or the first week of Christmas break because obviously those are the times adults and kids both get time off. So basically the debate is, going in July means being in that summer heat. Being from Texas, the heat is nothing new, it’s just a different kind of heat. During December, oh boy, I’ve seen the videos of what magic kingdom gets like during Christmas week. We thought it’d be nice to see the Christmas decorations and to go at a time where the heat isn’t too bad. I know these 2 months have their pros and cons, but what would you do? Summer heat or Christmas week crowds?

Queen of the WDW Screne

Well-Known Member
If its between July and Christmas week I'd go with July.
I've been both and as much as I enjoy Disney at Christmas time I would not choose to go during the busiest week of the year.
Instead for Christmas time I'd choose some time between Mid November and Mid December.
Also the heat isn't too terrible since you get sweaty walking from place to place but then you cool down in the ride/show/shop/restaurant.
And you know exactly what to pack in the summer. In late December you just never know. Last year we went the second week of December and we were absolutely freezing and that's coming from folks that live in the Buffalo NY area. The humid cold is just a bone chilling cold.


Well-Known Member
I would take the crowds over the heat. If you are looking at going the week prior to Christmas, expect the crowds to build some everyday till Christmas. If you plan and get moving early each morning, you can get a lot done even with crowds. The Christmas decorations and all make such as wonderful time. We enjoy the special shows and such at each of the countries at Epcot, they are usually fun and don't require a wait.


Well-Known Member
We have done WDW vacations during the last 3 Julys and last 3 Christmases, so we have recent experience with both.

Christmas Day at the Magic Kingdom is insufferable. Don't do it. (Disney Springs is also terrible Christmas night.) The other parks are more manageable, if you are used to WDW crowd levels. For us, Christmas Day means visits to the Animal Kingdom and Epcot.

If you can time a trip to finish before December 25, crowds are not too bad.

Being from Texas, you indicate that you are used to heat. One thing to recall is that it rains most afternoons in July at WDW. Rain is more tolerable in the heat. We've never had a rainy day in December. But with daytime highs typically in the 70s, I can imagine rain ruining the day.

For me, the toughest part of Christmas trips is dressing for the weather. It's cool in the morning, even cold. By noon, I'm switching to shorts. But once the sun goes down, it's back to long pants and a light jacket. The weather usually is chilly later in the evening.

July is about keeping feet (socks and shoes) dry during the rain. Shirts and shorts dry out but wet feet can result in blisters. We handle this by visiting a park in the morning, a pool in the early afternoon before the rain comes, relaxing in the room during the rain, and then another park at night.
My family and I have visited the last 8 years in December anywhere from the 17th and have been leaving on the 24th the last 4 years. The crowds do build a bit every day but there has only been one year (2016) that the MK was just awful after the 22nd. All other parks were just fine. I’m from Texas as well but the heat and humidity in July is much worse in Florida as it never lets up. At least here we get a little break in the mornings and evenings typically. However, if you can’t go until the actual week of Christmas, I would take July in a heartbeat.


Well-Known Member
It sounds like your family has not been there during December to see the Christmas decorations. If not, I would pick that over July just for the experience. Yes, it will be crowded but if you prepare it can be an awesome experience. We've been there when as soon as we walked in under the train station you were single file to get towards Main Street and the castle. However, we were prepared for the crowds and have an experience to remember. Not to mention it makes every other time of year seem tame! We've done July as well and same thing, if you are prepared for the heat and plan accordingly you're going to have a great time. You can also try and squeeze in a water park as well to get that experience also.


Well-Known Member
Christmas at WDW is exceptional. Everyone should go at least once to experience the wonderful decorations, atmosphere and holiday joy Disney brings. Too bad youve missed the Osborne light show... that was phenominal. Crowds will be there both times, July doesnt add anything extra to make it stand out. If you are a Christmas person youll really love everything Disney surrounds you with and it adds so much to your holiday spirit. That spirit is catchy too, it is the one time of year that Ive experienced when the majority of other guests in the parks are in pleasant moods to one another and exhibiting less temper flare ups. It also gives you the chance to do some great Christmas shopping for those who love Disney.


Well-Known Member
We have done both and enjoyed each one. Today I was looking to go in July next year, but seeing that the price for an All-Star room is 197.00 for preferred or 179 for standard it's not going to happen. I know there will probably be some discounts coming, but now they are not enough to justify staying onsite. We will still go, as we have AP's and want to get our moneys worth out of them, but we will stay someplace cheaper. And future AP's???? Not happening.


Well-Known Member
We go during the 1st or 2nd week in December while the kids are still in school. All the holiday perks and low crowds. Daytime temps are usually warm enough for swimming. I don’t like extreme heat so I would avoid the summer months at all cost.

Kingdom Konsultant

WDWMAGIC Board Sponsor
Premium Member
I would go in July any day over Christmas week. The crowds are at peak and the park will be at full capacity early in the day. I went a few weeks ago to see the Christmas decorations and to go to the party.
If you can go earlier in Dec or even the first couple of weeks in Nov, you will get the decorations, etc with less of a crowd.

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