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Today we are talking about holidays at Disney Parks. Not holiday seasons, actual holidays. It is a whole other beast to spend an actual major holiday in Walt Disney World. The crowds are crazy, the lines are long, the crowds are crazy, the days are long and did I mention that the crowds are crazy?
When we say holiday, we are talking July 4, Christmas, Halloween, New Years, Thanksgiving and special events, like openings of new land’s or big marketed events. Those are the major holidays that typically fill to capacity, the lines start to form for the fireworks show at Magic Kingdom about three hours prior to the start of the show; the lines for attractions that don’t usually have lines, magically get to 45 minutes and more.
Hubby and I don’t do holidays in Walt Disney World. We do holiday seasons in Walt Disney World but we typically stick to live streams and having major FOMO (fear of missing out) for the major holidays.
If you are going to brave major holidays at Walt Disney World, we are going to give you some tips and tricks on how to navigate the parks on some of the busiest days of the year.
Get there early! On the busiest days of the year, there is always a chance that these parks will fill to capacity. Get to the park of your choice early and have a plan. Then throw that plan out the window if need be and take the day in stride.
Get your Fast Passes! It is really important to be on top of booking fast passes, 60 days out from the start of your trip. This is the first opportunity that you have to book your fast passes and these holiday times will go fast and furious right at 7 a.m. EST. Set an alarm, turn that computer on, have the website site and have a plan. Have a plan for the entire trip; know what park is planned for what day and know which fast passes are top priority.
Be sure to also know if the park you are booking at does tiered fast pass so you know whether or not you can only book more than one tier one, or really popular ride, at which park. Know which tier one’s you want and get that done as quickly as possible.
For us, we have a plan for which days we are doing which parks and go after the most popular rides first. For example, if we are doing Epcot on day 1, Animal Kingdom on day 2, Hollywood Studios on day 3 and Magic Kingdom on day 4. We will book Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom first, I will take one park and hubby will take the other. If I take Animal Kingdom, I will go directly for Flight of Passage or Nav’i River Journey and at Hollywood Studio we will grab Slinky Dog Coaster.
Book Your Dining!
As we’ve mentioned in numerous other blog posts, dining can be booked out 180 days prior to the first day of the stay. If a person is looking to book a popular character meal or restaurant be sure to be on that as soon as that option becomes available. These high profile reservations include Be Our Guest, Cinderella’s Royal Table, ‘Ohana, Tusker House, Chef Mickey’s and Garden Grill.
There are going to be a lot of people in the parks; the lines are going to be long for everything. Things that don’t typically have a wait, will have a wait. Be patient, stay calm and go into it with the mindset that everyone else is fighting the same crowds, you made this decision to come during the busiest times of the year and you are still at the happiest place on earth so enjoy it.
I know that I keep stressing that a plan is a must and that is true! But, stuff can happen. Rides can breakdown, rain can happen (and probably will), people have meltdowns so be flexible and be willing to change the plan and go with something else. There is so much to do in Disney World; so many things that are off the beaten path and that maybe weren’t taken into consideration when the original plan was made.
So, that’s it! I hope that this helped in the planning of your next Disney trip! Be sure to check out our other posts that may help in your planning journey! Thank you for stopping by, and for the love of the mouse, never forget, that it all started with a mouse.