Millions of Guests dream of and enjoy a Walt Disney World Resort vacation each year, which is no surprise, as the property is filled with unforgettable experiences throughout the Disney Parks, Disney Resorts, and Disney Springs. With so many Guests visiting throughout the year, there is truly no slow season anymore and crowds have just become the norm and are to be expected. While crowds can definitely be a bummer and lead to busy pathways, long wait times, and overall frustration, there are some easy tips and tricks to follow to help avoid the chaos.
Looking to avoid the crowds? We’ve got you covered with these easy steps!
Enjoy Early Mornings & Late Nights
One of the easiest ways to avoid crowds is by strategically visiting the Magic Kingdom, EPCOT, Disney’s Hollywood Studios, and Disney’s Animal Kingdom, either first thing in the morning or later at night. While a Walt Disney World Resort vacation can be exhausting, it is still a vacation and many Guests enjoy sleeping in or calling it an early night to get some rest. This can result in lower crowds during the early mornings or very late at night, leading to lower wait times and quieter areas of the Parks. Visiting first thing in the morning or late at night is also wonderful in that temperatures are cooler, making exploring each Disney Park much more enjoyable than in the high heat and humidity of the afternoon.
Go Against the Crowds
When each Disney Park opens in the morning, crowds of Guests tend to head straight to popular attractions to get a jump on their day. While this isn’t a bad idea and can lead to crossing off a major experience first thing, it often creates a bottleneck and controlled chaos getting to the attraction from the entrance. Guests who want to avoid the rush to popular attractions should intentionally plan instead on going against the crowd and hitting up less popular options that tend to be very quiet in the mornings. For example, instead of heading straight to the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train or Space Mountain in the Magic Kingdom, Guests could instead visit Adventureland and enjoy attractions like the Jungle Cruise and Pirates of the Caribbean with no waits. Another example would be to head straight to Na’vi River Journey instead of Avatar Flight of Passage in Disney’s Animal Kingdom.
Dine During Off Times
Dining at the Walt Disney World Resort is one of the top experiences that Guests can enjoy while on vacation, and table service and quick service restaurants can be extremely crowded during popular meal times, leading to long lines and no available reservations. A great way to avoid the crowds and still enjoy wonderful dining options is purposely choosing to eat at off times. Have a late breakfast or an early dinner and the quick service restaurants will be much quieter than normal meal times and table service restaurants will likely have available reservations.
This should go without saying, but holidays are always way more crowded at the Walt Disney World Resort. Whether school holidays like summer or spring break where the kids are off or popular holidays like Halloween and Christmas when all Guests love to enjoy the celebratory festivities, the holidays are always notably busier. By planning a vacation specifically to avoid vacations, crowd levels will definitely be lower, leading to less stress and less time spent waiting in lines. Some great non-holiday times to visit are late January, early May, and early November.
Enjoy Events during the Week
Throughout the year, the Walt Disney World Resort is home to many special events including a series of festivals held in EPCOT, mainly in World Showcase. The EPCOT International Food & Wine Festival, EPCOT Flower & Garden Festival, and more have become extremely popular with Guests and offer up unique experiences, dining opportunities, and more that Guests can literally spend days enjoying. Each year, the festivals seem to have longer and longer run times, which is great in that more Guests are able to enjoy the fun. While visiting a festival at EPCOT is always going to be memorable, the weekends can be extremely crowded, thanks to many locals who love to get in on the fun as well. Guests who are looking to enjoy the festivals without the crazy crowds should absolutely plan on doing so from Monday through Thursday.
Skip the Bus and Use Uber
This one might be a little controversial, but it does help to avoid crowds. Disney Transportation is a complimentary service that can be enjoyed by Guests throughout the entire Walt Disney World Resort. Guests can easily travel from one point to another via various types of transportation including the monorail, boats, Disney Skyliner, buses, and more. Buses are the busiest form of Disney Transportation as they are offered at every Disney Resort and are even the only form of Disney Transportation at some. This results in buses being particularly crowded at busy times, like just before each Disney Park opens or closes for the day. A way to avoid these crowds is to instead opt for an Uber or Lyft, which obviously will cost Guests a fee. But typically takes a fraction of the time, is much calmer than a crowded bus, and can drop Guests off close to the main entrance of most Disney Parks. Guests who are running late or are set on getting to a Disney Park in a more relaxed way during busy times should definitely consider using a car service.