6 Things to Consider While Planning the Best Time to Go to Disney World

First things first. Planning Your Magical Dates.

I am so excited to hear that you are planning a magical vacation to Walt Disney World!

Disney World is my happy place which is what keeps me coming back multiple times each year.

The first thing to do when you decide to go on a magical vacation to Walt Disney World is to pick the time of the year you would like to go.

Each season at Disney World is so different that you really need to consider the pros on cons of each before booking your trip

Keep in mind that you can start making table service restaurant reservations 180 days in advance. If where you eat is important to you then you should consider booking your trip more than 180 days out so that you have the chance to research restaurants and book your reservations at 180 days.

In this article I will go over the main points you should consider while deciding when you want to visit the happiest place on earth!

Things To Consider When Choosing the Best Time to Go to Disney World

  • Work Schedules
  • School Schedules
  • Weather
  • Crowds
  • Holidays
  • Disney Events

 

Work and School Schedules

This is self-explanatory. You will need to consider your schedule as well as your children’s schedules. Don’t overlook your many different activities such as sports, scouts, 4-H, etc. I have overlooked a competition when I scheduled a vacation before. Don’t do what I did! Take out a calendar and write everything down before deciding on your dates.

 

Florida Weather

Another major consideration when planning your trip to Walt Disney World is the weather.

We all know that Florida is known as the “Sunshine State”, but did you know during most summer months between June and September it rains just about every day between 2 pm- 4 pm? This is because of sea breeze showers that may pop up from time to time and most often do.

Rain every day may seem like a reason to not visit during the summer, however, the rain could be a good thing. The rain showers most often are short-lived and can often cool things down for the rest of the day. If you plan to visit during these months don’t let the rain get you down, just prepare for it. Make sure you always have a poncho for everyone in your group. Also, don’t forget one for your stroller if you have a little one you are pushing around the parks. We typically bring our own ponchos that we purchase for 1 to 3 dollars at a local dollar store or department store. You can also pick one up in the park. The one in the park will be more expensive, however, higher quality and if you rip it you are able to exchange it with your receipt.

During the summer, if it hasn’t rained, it will be hot, very HOT. Average temperatures during the summer months are in the lower 90’s. You may think to yourself “That’s not so bad. Here in Kansas City, it gets almost 100 in the summer.” Don’t be fooled. Those lower temps coupled with the humidity in the 80 to 90 percent range makes it feel like it is over 100 degrees most days. Many of the rides and ques are inside, however, you are still outside for most of your day. Depending on your heat tolerance this may or may not be a big deal. If you would like to visit during the summer plan to go at a slower pace, take breaks during the hottest times of the day and drink lots of water. 

You may also want to consider hurricane season, but I wouldn’t worry too much about it. Hurricanes do hit Florida, but in the last almost 47 years Walt Disney World has only been closed five times due to hurricanes. Most of the five times they closed were for no longer than a day, and some of the times were only for part of the day.

Are you now thinking about going in the Spring or Fall to avoid this crazy heat? That may be a very good plan, maybe.

Spring and Fall in Florida are very short and really only offer you slightly milder temperatures. The humidity still makes the milder temperatures seem hotter than normal. The best part is you are less likely to see large amounts of rain. Even with less chance of rain, I still keep my poncho handy year-round and you should too.

What about Winter? Winter has to have better weather, right? Winter is tricky. Some days could require a light to medium jacket, while other days you are sneaking off to the pool to cool off after a day at the parks. Make sure you pack both shorts and pants as well as a swimsuit and a hooded sweater for a winter trip. You never know what you are going to get. You can be sure, though, that it isn’t going to be nearly as hot as the summer months. 

Crowds

If you are trying to avoid crowds, keep in mind that crowds typically are heaviest when schools are out of session, and lighter when school is in session.

History has shown moderate crowds throughout the spring, except for mid-March through mid-April when many schools go on Spring Break and crowd levels go up.

Surprisingly, in the last couple of years, the summer crowd has been moderate rather than heavy on most days. Disney has been doing a great job of leveling out the crowds throughout the year by using different specials, events, etc. to bring people in during the slow times. Disney has been doing such a good job of leveling things out that during the last couple years there hasn’t really been a slow time at Walt Disney World.

If you are looking for a slow time I would suggest early to mid-September.  The last couple Septembers have been relatively slow, and many are predicting this September to be a slow time as well.

There are a few days each year which crowd levels spike, especially in the Magic Kingdom. These are the actual day of a major holiday such as the Fourth of July, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years. The week between Christmas and New Years can actually be the busiest time out of the entire year. The week of Thanksgiving gets pretty busy as well. If you would like to visit during a holiday don’t let crowds get you down, just plan to visit a park that isn’t known to have as heavy of a crowd during that holiday. We spent the last fourth of July at Hollywood Studios, and even with Toy Story Land opening just a few days before, Hollywood Studios was almost empty. Everyone wanted to be at the Magic Kingdom or Epcot that day for the fireworks.

Now speaking of holidays, this leads me to my next topic.

Holidays & Special Events

Visiting Walt Disney World during your favorite Holiday season may be your dream come true. Disney goes all out when it comes to decorating for Halloween and Christmas and has special events for the holiday season as well. Read below for a list of events, parties, and festivals to consider while planning your magical vacation. Each event has been scheduled for the past several years, however, there is no guarantee they will happen every year. I will include the most recent or upcoming dates I have for each event.

 

January

Epcot International Festival of the Arts January 12 – February 19, 2018. (2019 dates TBA)

Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend January 9 – 13, 2019

 

February

Epcot International Festival of the Arts January 12 – February 19, 2018 (2019 dates TBA)

Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival February 28 – May 28, 2018 (2019 dates TBA)

Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend February 21 – 24, 2019

 

March

Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival February 28 – May 28, 2018 (2019 dates TBA)

 

April

Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival February 28 – May 28, 2018 (2019 dates TBA)

Star Wars Rival Run Half Marathon Weekend April 4 – 7, 2019

 

May

Star Wars Galactic Nights May 27, 2018 (2019 dates TBA)

Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival February 28 – May 28, 2018

 

August

Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party August 17 – October 31, 2018 (select nights)

Epcot International Food & Wine Festival August 30 – November 12, 2018

 

September

Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party August 17 – October 31, 2018 (select nights)

Epcot International Food & Wine Festival August 30 – November 12, 2018

 

October

Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party August 17 – October 31, 2018 (select nights)

Epcot International Food & Wine Festival August 30 – November 12, 2018

 

November

Epcot International Food & Wine Festival August 30 – November 12, 2018

Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon Weekend November 1 – 4, 2018

Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party November 8 – December 21, 2018 (select nights)

 

December

Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party November 8 – December 21, 2018 (select nights)

Epcot International Festival of the Holidays – Candlelight Processional – November 22 – December 30, 2018

 

Thank you for reading my blog post on the six major things to consider when choosing the best time to go to Walt Disney World. I hope that this article helped you to narrow your dates down. If you are still trying to decide please leave your questions in the comments below and I would be more than happy to help you pick the perfect dates. Also, if this post has been helpful to you, I would be forever grateful if you would help to spread this article by sharing this post on your social media account. Just click one of the buttons below!

If you are interested in learning more about taking your very first Disney vacation click the banner below! Choose your location, fill out the form, and I will email you a no-obligation quote.

 

 



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