November 2014 Walt Disney World Crowd Calendar

by josh on May 3, 2014

11/18/14 Update: Magic Kingdom opening at 8am on November 30.

11/16/14 Update: Animal Kingdom opening at 8am every day from November 16-22.

11/13/14 Update: 8am openings at Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom most days over Thanksgiving week as listed here. 10pm closes at Hollywood Studios over most of Thanksgiving week and extensions at Magic Kingdom on November 18 and 19 as listed here. Magic Kingdom also extended to 8am-7pm on November 16th and 21st.

10/15/14 Update: Crowd Calendar updated with the changes listed here.

7/16/14 Update: Crowd Calendar updated with the changes listed here.

6/27/14 Update: Crowd calendar updated with the changes listed here. Note the changes in Extra Magic Hours at Magic Kingdom.

5/22/14 Update: Crowd Calendar updated with minor changes listed here.

This is the Free November 2014 Disney World Crowd Calendar that shows the Recommended Parks to Visit, Overall Crowd Level Estimation, Cost, Historic High/Low Temperature, Historic Chance of Precipitation, Extra Magic Hours Schedule, Fantasmic Show Times, Holidays, and Special Events.

Make sure you first read my month-by-month overview of visiting Disney World, located here. The overview will give you an idea of what to expect in terms of cost, crowds, weather, and special events on a broader scale. Once you figure out when you would like to visit, you can move on to this more detailed look.

Here’s a quick explanation of how to read the calendar and what the numbers mean. It may seem like it’s a little long, but you’ll only need to read the explanation once.

  • The first line in each box is the date.
  • The second line shows the cost to book a room at a Disney-owned resort. $ = Value Season, $$ = Regular Season, $$$ = Summer Season, $$$$ = Peak Season, and $$$$$ = Holiday Season. Occasionally there will be a + or – after the $$$ to show that the cost is slightly higher or lower than usual, but not by enough to raise it another $ notch.
  • The third line is the average high and low temperature and the chance of precipitation. All data is based on the last 15 years. I wouldn’t read too much into the precipitation percentages for each day because just one or two additional days of rain in the last 15 years can raise the percentage substantially. I included it so you can look at the precipitation trends throughout the month(s) and take it into consideration when deciding when to book your vacation. For a broader overview of the month, read the month-by-month overview I linked to above.
  • The fourth line is an estimation of the overall crowd level. A “5″ refers to average crowds. Numbers above 5 refer to a larger than average overall crowd level and numbers below 5 refer to lower than average overall crowds. A day with an overall crowd level of “1″ means that the crowds are expected to be the absolute lowest of the year and a “10″ means crowds are expected to be at their largest of the year. In other words, the overall crowd level estimation will give you an idea of how many people are in the entire Disney World complex, including the four major theme parks, water parks, Downtown Disney, golf courses, resorts, etc. Individual theme parks can have smaller or larger crowds than the overall estimation, which is where the theme park recommendations come in.
  • The fifth line shows the theme parks I recommend visiting in green and the theme parks I recommend avoiding in red. There is also a | sign that splits up the recommended and not recommended Parks for the color blind or those printing in black and white (the Parks to the left of the | sign are recommended). I use the usual abbreviations for the Parks; AK is the Animal Kingdom, EP is Epcot, HS is Hollywood Studios, and MK is the Magic Kingdom. In addition to the colors, the Park on the far left is the most recommended Park to visit that day. The Park second to the left is the second most recommended and so on. For example, if the line reads AK EP | HS MK then the Animal Kingdom is the most recommended and Epcot is the second most recommended. On the other side of the | sign, Hollywood Studios is not recommended and the Magic Kingdom is expressly not recommended even more. If possible, I would strongly recommend you visit the Park that is most recommended each day. Please read below the calendar for an overview of how I’ve selected the recommended Parks and also a day-by-day explanation.
  • The sixth line lists which Parks have Extra Magic Hours and at what time they start. Morning Extra Magic Hour lasts one hour and usually starts at 8am. Evening Extra Magic Hours last two hours from the start time. For example, if you see AK:8am EP:9pm, that means the Animal Kingdom has a morning Extra Magic Hour from 8am-9am and Epcot has evening Extra Magic Hours from 9pm-12am.
  • The seventh line lists the Fantasmic show times at the Hollywood Studios.
  • The eighth line lists the start time of Main Street Electrical Parade (MSEP:) and Wishes Fireworks at Magic Kingdom(W:). For example, if you see, MSEP: 9pm & 11pm W: 10pm, it would mean that Main Street Electrical Parade begins at 9pm and 11pm and Wishes begins at 10pm.

The Calendar is also available in an easy to view and print PDF file, Here.

Click the image to enlarge it.

Saturday November 1

Animal Kingdom: 9am – 6pm (Most Recommended)

Epcot: 9am – 10pm (Not Recommended)

Illuminations: 10pm

Hollywood Studios: 9am – 8:30pm (Not Recommended)

Morning Extra Magic Hour: 8am – 9am

Fantasmic: 7:30pm and 9pm

Magic Kingdom: 9am – 12am (Not Recommended)

Evening Extra Magic Hours: 12am – 2am

Festival of Fantasy Parade: 3pm, Main Street Electrical Parade: 9pm and 11pm, Wishes Fireworks: 10pm

Animal Kingdom is the most recommended Park. We don’t have Extra Magic Hours, special events, evening entertainment, or anything else to attract on-site or off-site visitors. Those leaving tomorrow after a traditional weeklong vacation are unlikely to visit Animal Kingdom on their last full day and most arriving today won’t head out to Animal Kingdom as their first destination. We’re also coming off a morning Extra Magic Hour yesterday that will be much more popular with resort guests. Magic Kingdom and Hollywood Studios will be attracting the bulk of the resort crowd and Epcot will be far more popular with locals for the Food and Wine Festival. As always, you’ll be best off if you arrive prior to Park opening and head straight for Kilimanjaro Safaris and Expedition Everest. Wait times will only get shorter after 4pm, so stay through close if you have more you’d like to accomplish. Head to DinoLand after 4pm and Asia after 5pm to find much lower waits than the afternoon.

Epcot will be considerably busier than usual due to the incredibly popular International Food and Wine Festival. The event attracts tons of locals, especially in the afternoon and evening in the World Showcase where the majority of the Food and Wine events take place. Although the effect on Future World and the headlining attractions isn’t as great, we’re still much better off waiting until Monday to visit. Expect incredibly heavy crowds from 1pm through IllumiNations. If you can’t visit Epcot any other day, make sure you arrive prior to Park opening and visit Test Track, Sum of All Thrills, Mission Space, and Soarin’ immediately in the morning or follow a touring plan. Use FastPass+ in the late morning and afternoon when crowds and waits peak. Move up through the Mexico and Norway Pavilions in the World Showcase at 11am if you can’t get to the World Showcase on another day. The World Showcase will be buzzing from 1pm through close and it will be very difficult to move around with the heavier crowds, even if the attractions won’t necessarily be that much busier than usual. Try to move through World Showcase as quickly as possible and then return to Future World. If you’re trying to decide between visiting Epcot on Friday, Saturday, or Sunday, I would recommend Friday and then Sunday over Saturday.

Hollywood Studios is not recommended. The sizable Disney resort contingent numbers 75,000+ people. Because Disney sells the Extra Magic Hour program so well in its marketing materials, many of these Disney resort guests follow the Extra Magic Hours schedule because they think it’s Disney telling them where they belong each day. While you can have success if you are Extra Magic Hours eligible and arrive by 7:15am, most people will want to visit another day. Tomorrow would be significantly better. Avoid it unless you can’t visit any other day or are certain you’ll arrive by 7:15am and plan to hit Toy Story Midway Mania, Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster, Tower of Terror, and Star Tours first thing in the morning.

Saturdays are naturally the busiest day of the week at the Magic Kingdom. We have longer hours of operation, visiting locals, and a lot of vacationers who will be visiting the Magic Kingdom for a second time before returning home tomorrow. On top of that, Disney added evening Extra Magic Hours, attracting even more resort guests. On top of that, Main Street Electrical Parade is only scheduled on a limited number of nights this week. Because the Parade is so popular, a lot of people will visit on a day that they can see it, like today. Yesterday will be much less crowded with the 7pm close and lack of nighttime entertainment. Yesterday, tomorrow, and next Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday will be much better days to tour, but you can have a moderate amount of success today if you arrive prior to 8:30am and head straight for the headlining or Fantasyland attractions. You may elect to prioritize another low capacity attraction or character instead. The afternoon will be busier than any other day this week and you’ll either want to take a break and return for the Electrical Parade and Wishes or visit the less popular attractions from 1pm – 7pm. The relatively late night is also a good time to tour with short waits at most attractions after 10pm. If you’re planning to visit during evening Extra Magic Hours, begin in Adventureland or Frontierland because most people will head straight for Tomorrowland or Fantasyland. Visit Tomorrowland or Fantasyland in the final hour to find shorter waits. While it is possible to have a decent day here if you arrive early and tour efficiently, there are much less crowded days to visit during the week.

Sunday November 2

Animal Kingdom: 9am – 8pm (Most Recommended)

Epcot: 9am – 9pm (Not Recommended)

Illuminations: 9pm

Hollywood Studios: 9am – 7:30pm (Not Recommended)

Evening Extra Magic Hours: 7:30pm – 9:30pm

Fantasmic: 6:30pm and 8pm

Magic Kingdom: 9am – 10pm (Tentatively Recommended for Nighttime Entertainment)

Festival of Fantasy Parade: 3pm, Main Street Electrical Parade: 8pm and 10pm, Wishes Fireworks: 9pm

Animal Kingdom is the most recommended Park. Disney resort guests are more likely to visit tomorrow for morning Extra Magic Hour and it’s unlikely anyone arriving over the weekend will begin their vacation with Disney’s least popular theme park. Epcot will be busier with the Food and Wine Festival, Epcot will be busier with evening Extra Magic Hours, and Magic Kingdom will continue pulling crowds with both nighttime spectaculars. Despite the relatively short operating hours, you should be able to do just about everything the Park has to offer if you arrive prior to Park opening. Focus on riding Kilimanjaro Safaris and Expedition Everest as early as possible and/or use FastPass+. After getting those out of the way, move on to DinoLand USA or one of the more popular shows – either Finding Nemo the Musical or Festival of the Lion King and you’ll be set for the rest of the day. Keep in mind that crowds disperse in the afternoon and the last hour of operation will only have diminishing waits. End the day in Asia with Kali River Rapids and Expedition Everest and waits will be nearly nonexistent.

Epcot will be busy again for the International Food and Wine Festival. Many locals know how busy Saturdays are and they wait until Sunday to visit. Others will wait until Sunday to visit because they’re more interested in the special events scheduled that day. Because the Food and Wine Festival runs every day during the week, there’s really no benefit to visiting over the weekend if you have flexibility in which day you visit, unless you’re planning to attend a special event or workshop that is only offered on the weekend. For most locals, visiting on the weekend is much more convenient than trying to swing a weekday visit. You can find success if you arrive by 8:15am and head straight for Test Track, Sum of All Thrills, Mission Space, and Soarin’, but you would be much better off waiting until tomorrow to visit when you won’t need to worry as much about Food and Wine crowds. The World Showcase will be busier than usual in the afternoon and evening.

Hollywood Studios will be busy due to the evening Extra Magic Hours that are popular with Disney resort guests and the second Fantasmic and later close, which will attract off-site guess as well. The morning will be an okay time to tour, but crowds will increase around 11am as more and more Disney resort guests arrive. Unfortunately, I’m not too fond of evening Extra Magic Hours at Hollywood Studios. There are only a few attractions open and the waits for Toy Story Mania, Rock ‘N’ Roller Coaster, Tower of Terror, and Star Tours will likely be just as long as they were during the day, at least until 9pm when people begin to give up and exit. In addition, 9,000+ people will exit Fantasmic at 7pm and again at 8:30, right as evening Extra Magic Hours gets underway. The Fantasmic Theater is located right on Sunset Boulevard, across from the entrances to Tower of Terror and Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster. While not everyone seeing Fantasmic will be a Disney resort guest, many of them will be, and a ton will be headed to Tower of Tower and Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster because they truly believe it’s the best time to get in line. Unfortunately, they’ll find themselves lined up with a few thousand of their new best friends. If you’re staying for evening Extra Magic Hours, your best bet is always to save these headlining attractions for the very end of the night and visit Toy Story Mania last. While you could theoretically have success if you arrive prior to Park opening and head straight for the headliners, the same will be true later in the week and you won’t have to deal with the significantly heavier afternoon and evening crowds. Several dates later in the week are better.

Magic Kingdom is tentatively recommended now that the close has been extended and it has added two Electrical Parades. Today is the best day this week to enjoy Wishes and the Electrical Parade and remains recommended because of it, but it will be considerably busier than a Party date with a 7pm close. Fortunately, we’re sandwiched in between a more popular Saturday yesterday with evening Extra Magic Hours and tomorrow offers a similar schedule, which will also help pull people away. An efficient touring plan is the most important step toward a successful day in low crowds and short waits. Arrive by 8:25am with your priorities in mind, whether it be Mine Train, Space Mountain, a popular character, or whatever else. Plan an afternoon break from around 1:30pm to 6pm or so when crowds and waits peak. Return in the evening for dinner, some nighttime attractions, Wishes, and the later Electrical Parade. The second Electrical Parade is significantly less crowded than the first because so many families leave immediately after Wishes, if they even make it that far. See it in Liberty Square or Frontierland where crowds are even lower. If you’re not interested in the entertainment, visit Tomorrowland after 8pm and Fantasyland after 9pm to find shorter waits than the afternoon.

Monday November 3

Animal Kingdom: 9am – 6pm (Not Recommended)

Morning Extra Magic Hour: 8am – 9am

Epcot: 9am – 9pm (Most Recommended)

Illuminations: 9pm

Hollywood Studios: 9am – 7:30pm (Highly Recommended)

Fantasmic: 6:30pm

Magic Kingdom: 9am – 10pm (Not Recommended)

Festival of Fantasy Parade: 3pm, Main Street Electrical Parade: 8pm and 10pm, Wishes Fireworks: 9pm

Animal Kingdom will be moderately more popular than recommended days due to the morning Extra Magic Hour that will attract a decent number of Disney resort guests. Mondays at the Animal Kingdom aren’t wildly popular because of the fact that morning Extra Magic Hours aren’t as popular as evening Extra Magic Hours and because it’s early in the week and few people that just arrived over the weekend will be looking to visit Disney World’s least popular theme park. Still, there are better days to visit the Animal Kingdom than today, including tomorrow and Thursday. While the morning Extra Magic Hour is an excellent time to tour, it’s difficult to get out to the Animal Kingdom by 7:45am to take full advantage of it. If you’re staying at a Monorail Deluxe Resort, you’re looking at a 20+ minute drive to the Animal Kingdom, plus time for the bus to arrive – not to mention getting multiple people up and ready early in the morning with just one shower and limited space. At 6:30am. If you’re absolutely certain that you’ll arrive by 7:45am, then you can have a lot of success because the crowd level won’t be that high, but it will be busier in the afternoon than other recommended days this week due to a higher number of Disney resort guests than usual. You’re much better served holding off for a recommended day if you’re not going to arrive until 9am or later.

Epcot is the most recommended Park. We don’t have Extra Magic Hours, special evening entertainment, or anything else that will draw people toward Epcot specifically. Disney resort guests will be more likely to visit tomorrow or Wednesday for Extra Magic Hours and off-site visitors on a weeklong vacation will be headed to the Magic Kingdom for their first full day at the world’s most popular theme park. Disney resort guests are more likely to head to Animal Kingdom for the Extra Magic Hour. We’re also coming off a much busier weekend thanks to the Food and Wine Festival. To have the most success, arrive prior to Park opening and head to Test Track, Sum of All Thrills, Mission: Space, and Soarin’ or follow one of the two-day compartmentalized touring plans. With the Food and Wine Festival, World Showcase will remain much busier than it would be otherwise. Head up immediately at 11am to dodge most of the crowds. The evening will be busier than usual in World Showcase. Plan to return to Future World after 5pm to avoid the congestion. Just keep in mind that a lot of the Future World attractions close at 7pm. Usually, just Soarin, Test Track, Mission: Space, Spaceship Earth, The Seas with Nemo and Friends, and Character Spot continue to operate after 7pm. If Character Spot is on your itinerary, try to visit after 7pm when waits times are much lower than the afternoon. Overall, it’s a great day for Epcot and an excellent opportunity to spend time in both Future World and World Showcase.

Hollywood Studios is highly recommended as we come off two busier days in a row with Extra Magic Hours. It’s also early enough in the week that most guests just arriving will be intent on visiting Magic Kingdom with its nighttime entertainment and long hours of operation. As always, it’s imperative that you arrive by 8:15am and take care of Toy Story Mania first thing. The Studios has a severely limited number of rides and wait times rise quickly even on the most recommended days with the lowest crowds.

Magic Kingdom is going to be busy today. Mondays are usually the second busiest day of the week at the Magic Kingdom, second to only Saturdays, for a variety of reasons. First, a lot of people travel over the weekend and visit Magic Kingdom on their first full day. In most instances, that day is Monday. Second, Mondays often feature longer hours, Wishes Fireworks, and Main Street Electrical Parade, when other days during the week have shorter operating hours and don’t offer the Electrical Parade. Anyone who wants to see the evening entertainment will have to visit on a day when it’s offered, like most Saturdays and Mondays. Magic Kingdom will be significantly busier than the average crowd level indicates and is best avoided. You can do okay if you arrive at the gate by 8:30am and tour efficiently in the morning, but 11am – 9pm is going to be busier than any day this week other than Saturday.

Tuesday November 4

Animal Kingdom: 9am – 6pm (Most Recommended)

Epcot: 9am – 9pm (Not Recommended)

Morning Extra Magic Hour: 8am – 9am

Illuminations: 9pm

Hollywood Studios: 9am – 7:30pm (Recommended)

Fantasmic: 6:30pm

Magic Kingdom: 9am – 10pm (Highly Recommended)

Festival of Fantasy Parade: 3pm, Main Street Electrical Parade: none, Wishes Fireworks: 9pm

Animal Kingdom is the most recommended Park. We don’t have special events, Extra Magic Hours, or anything specific drawing people toward it. Yesterday’s morning Extra Magic Hours will be more popular with Disney resort guests. It’s early enough in the week that many people on weeklong vacations will be saving Animal Kingdom for later in the week. To have the most success, arrive prior to Park opening and head straight for Kilimanjaro Safaris and Expedition Everest. You’ll have no trouble riding both with very low waits before 10am. Once you get through these two attractions, you have little to worry about other than trying to get to the scheduled shows. Finding Nemo and Festival of the Lion King do get busy during the afternoon shows, so try to see the first or last show of the day. You’ll also want to get to DinoLand USA before 10:30am to ride Primeval Whirl and DINOSAUR because those two attractions are popular. Still, they aren’t necessarily your top morning priorities. You should have no trouble experiencing most everything Animal Kingdom has to offer in one day, provided you arrive early in the morning, tour efficiently, use FastPass+ intelligently, and keep an eye on the time in order to see the scheduled stage shows. Finally, crowds disperse in the afternoon. Plan to stay through close because waits will only get shorter as it gets later in the evening. Visit DinoLand after 4pm and Asia after 5pm to find much lower waits than the afternoon.

Epcot is not recommended. We have the morning Extra Magic Hour attracting the majority of Disney resort guests and a lot of off-site visitors who will naturally visit Epcot after the Magic Kingdom yesterday. Skip it unless you can’t get there any other day or are certain you’ll arrive prior to 8am for the morning Extra Magic Hour and plan to either Park Hop elsewhere or take a break in the afternoon.

Hollywood Studios is recommended. We have Epcot attracting resort guests with the morning Extra Magic Hour and Magic Kingdom will continue pulling people away with decent hours of operation and Wishes. This coming Thursday is the best day of the week to visit with Magic Kingdom pulling people away with the morning Extra Magic Hour and Electrical Parade.

Magic Kingdom is highly recommended. We’re coming off a busy day with the Electrical Parade and the fact that Mondays are more popular with guests traveling over the weekend. If you’re looking for the absolute lowest crowds, a recommended Christmas Party date would be better, but you won’t have the opportunity to see Wishes in the evening. If you do visit today, take advantage of the relatively low crowds by arriving prior to Park opening and head straight for Fantasyland (Mine Train, Peter Pan’s Flight, Winnie the Pooh), the headlining Mountain rides (Space Mountain, Big Thunder Mountain, Splash Mountain), or other time sensitive attractions (Astro Orbiter, Tomorrowland Indy Speedway). Popular characters that don’t offer FastPass+ may also be a priority. You’ll be able to accomplish a ton of attractions in a short amount of time if you make efficient use of the morning and use FastPass+ at the priority attractions in the early afternoon or evening. Consider taking a break from 1pm to 6pm or so when crowds and wait times peak. Return in the evening for dinner, some late night attractions, and Wishes. Overall, Magic Kingdom is an excellent choice, especially if you’d like to see Wishes and only plan to visit Magic Kingdom one day. Tomorrow is slightly better.

Wednesday November 5

Animal Kingdom: 9am – 6pm (Recommended)

Epcot: 9am – 9pm (Not Recommended)

Evening Extra Magic Hours: 9pm – 11pm

Illuminations: 9pm

Hollywood Studios: 9am – 7pm (Recommended)

Fantasmic: 6:30pm

Magic Kingdom: 9am – 10pm (Most Recommended)

Festival of Fantasy Parade: 3pm, Main Street Electrical Parade: none, Wishes Fireworks: 9pm

Animal Kingdom is recommended for a number of reasons. We don’t have special events, Extra Magic Hours, or anything specific drawing people toward it. Epcot will be attracting the bulk of the resort crowd with the popular evening Extra Magic Hours. To have the most success, arrive prior to Park opening and head straight for Kilimanjaro Safaris and Expedition Everest. You’ll have no trouble riding both with very low waits before 10am. Once you get through these two attractions, you have little to worry about other than trying to get to the scheduled shows. Finding Nemo does get busy during the afternoon shows, so try to see the first or last show of the day. You’ll also want to get to DinoLand USA before 10:30am to ride Primeval Whirl and DINOSAUR because those two attractions are popular. Still, they aren’t necessarily your top morning priorities. You should have no trouble experiencing most everything Animal Kingdom has to offer in one day, provided you arrive early in the morning, tour efficiently, use FastPass+ intelligently, and keep an eye on the time in order to see the scheduled stage shows. Finally, crowds disperse in the afternoon. Plan to stay through close because waits will only get shorter as it gets later in the evening. Visit DinoLand after 4pm and Asia after 5pm to find much lower waits than the afternoon.

We’ll want to avoid Epcot. Its evening Extra Magic Hours will lure the majority of Disney resort guests, which will lengthen waits times at the attractions for the entire afternoon and evening. Epcot is almost always at its busiest and lines are the longest when it has evening Extra Magic Hours. This is due to the fact that many Disney resort guests head to whichever Park has Extra Magic Hours, even if they don’t plan to take advantage of them. Without Park Hopper, Disney resort guests must stay in the Park with Extra Magic Hours for the entire day. The increased crowds lead to longer lines, heavier congestion in common areas, and an overall less pleasant touring experience. I would urge you to visit a different Park. If you want to head to Epcot today, despite my strong objections, your best chance to ride the headlining rides is from 9am-10am. Most Disney resort guests will sleep in and arrive around 10:30am in anticipation of staying until around 10pm. The morning will be an excellent time to tour Epcot, but you’ll probably want to Park Hop elsewhere after lunch or you’ll be stuck in significantly larger-than-usual crowds. You might also consider an afternoon break from 2pm-6pm when crowds will be at their largest. You could then return in the early evening for dinner and Extra Magic Hours. Alternatively, you could also Park Hop over in the evening for Extra Magic Hours, provided you’re aware of how busy it will be. The last hour of Extra Magic Hours is always the least crowded, so plan to stay until 11pm and head back to Soarin’ and Test Track after 10pm. Skip Illuminations if you’ll be here on another night because it will be more crowded than usual.

Hollywood Studios comes recommended with Epcot being attractive to resort guests. To have the most success, you’ll still want to arrive by 8:15am and head straight for Toy Story Mania, Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster, and Tower of Terror. Because Toy Story Mania has such a limited capacity, wait times are almost always 60+ minutes in the afternoon, even with some of the lowest crowds of the year. You’ll want to make it your top priority. Your second priority is Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster, which also sees long afternoon waits and limited FastPass+ availability. Tower of Terror and Star Tours should be easier to ride, but also remain priorities. If you can get these attractions done in the early morning, you’ll be in great shape for the rest of the day. The only other problem most people run into is trying to schedule all of the stage shows that run on a set schedule. You may also want to prioritize characters that will have longer afternoon waits. The Toy Story characters across from Toy Story typically meet beginning at 9am and have the longest afternoon waits. Sofia the First usually has the second longest waits and meets in Animation Courtyard beginning at 9:30am. Phineas & Ferb also see long lines. They typically begin appearing at 9:30am, which means you’ll have time to ride Toy Story Mania before heading over to the Toy Story characters and then over to Sofia or Phineas & Ferb, which are located near Mama Melrose’s Ristorante Italiano and across from the exit to Muppet Vision 3D. Check the week’s Times Guide to verify appearance times. Two other popular characters appear in the Animation Building in the Animation Courtyard. Sorcerer Mickey in particular has long afternoon waits and The Incredibles characters also tend to have decent lines. Since both characters meet indoors and their lines aren’t usually over 20 minutes long, you should be able to find them with decent waits later in the day if you have other morning priorities. Finally, you’ll find some characters in the morning near Mickey’s Sorcerer’s Hat that won’t appear later in the afternoon. Daisy Duck, Donald Duck, Chip, Dale, Stitch, Goofy, and Pluto are all common, but no specific character is guaranteed to appear. For Fantasmic, consider the Fantasmic Dining Package that guarantees everyone on the reservation a seat in the reserved section of the theater. You’ll still need to arrive at least 20 minutes early, but it’s better than the 60+ minutes early you’ll need to arrive without the package. The Dining Package makes the most sense on the Disney Dining Plan because it only costs one table service credit (except at Hollywood Brown Derby, which still costs two credits as it would otherwise) and includes the appetizer. As far as general seating is concerned, the best seats are about half way up in the center sections. Sit any closer and you run the risk of getting wet and it’s more difficult to see what’s happening on the water.

Magic Kingdom is the most recommended Park and the best day this week to see Wishes in the evening. Friday will be less crowded if you’re looking for the lowest crowds this week, but the Park closes at 7pm and the Electrical Parade and Wishes aren’t scheduled. Plan to arrive by 8:30am and hit Fantasyland or other priorities first thing. Take a break from 1pm to 5pm or so when crowds and temperatures peak. Return in the evening for dinner, some nighttime attractions, and Wishes. If you’re not planning to see Wishes, hit Tomorrowland with two hours to close and Fantasyland in the final hour to enjoy much shorter waits than the afternoon. You can do very well, but the afternoon will be moderately busy and is best avoided if possible.

Thursday November 6

Animal Kingdom: 9am – 7pm (Recommended)

Epcot: 9am – 9pm (Highly Recommended)

Illuminations: 9pm

Hollywood Studios: 9am – 7pm (Most Recommended)

Fantasmic: 6:30pm

Magic Kingdom: 9am –10pm (Not Recommended)

Morning Extra Magic Hour: 8am – 9am

Festival of Fantasy Parade: 3pm, Main Street Electrical Parade: 8pm and 10pm, Wishes Fireworks: 9pm

Animal Kingdom is recommended with the amount of things going on elsewhere and the popularity of tomorrow’s morning Extra Magic Hour with resort guests. Today, we have morning Extra Magic Hour/Main Street Electrical Parade attracting crowds toward the Magic Kingdom. As always, you’ll find the most success if you arrive prior to Park opening and head straight to Kilimanjaro Safaris and Expedition Everest. If you’re not riding the thrill rides (Expedition Everest, Dinosaur, Primeval Whirl), you’ll want to attend the first showing of Finding Nemo and/or Festival of the Lion King because they will be popular in the afternoon. Also consider arriving for the popular characters about five minutes before they’re scheduled to appear to cut down on wait times. Rely on FastPass+ for attractions you either want to ride again or couldn’t make it to in the morning and you should be able to do just about everything the Animal Kingdom has to offer. Stay through close if there’s more that you want to accomplish because wait times will only decrease from 4pm onward. After completing your itinerary, you may want to Park Hop to Magic Kingdom for Wishes and Main Street Electrical Parade, Hollywood Studios for Fantasmic, or Epcot for dinner and IllumiNations. Keep in mind that crowds disperse in the afternoon. Without Park Hopper, consider transferring to the Animal Kingdom Lodge for dinner at one of its excellent restaurants. There’s also a public observatory where you can gaze out at the Animal Kingdom Lodge’s private savannas and enjoy the same view many guests are paying a premium to have right outside their balconies. A trip to Downtown Disney or the BoardWalk for dinner and shopping also makes a lot of sense.

Epcot is highly recommended. Yesterday’s evening Extra Magic Hours will be more attractive to Disney resort guests and the next four days are guaranteed to be busier with the Food and Wine Festival. We also have morning Extra Magic Hour and Main Street Electrical Parade pulling people towards Magic Kingdom. Plan to arrive prior to Park opening and head straight to Test Track, Sum of All Thrills, Mission: Space, and Soarin’ or follow a more compartmentalized two-day touring plan if you prefer. If you arrive later, plan to use FastPass+ at Soarin or Test Track because they will have 60+ minute waits for most of the day after 10:30am due to popularity and relatively low capacities. Getting in line right before Park close will also result in a short wait if you can’t ride any other time. Move on to the World Showcase beginning around 11am if crowds begin to build in Future World. Return to Future World after 5pm if you have more to accomplish and to ride/re-ride the headliners with FastPass+. It’s also a great day to stay for dinner and IllumiNations.

Hollywood Studios is the most recommended Park. Magic Kingdom will be a much bigger draw with morning Extra Magic Hour and Main Street Electrical Parade drawing off-site and on-site visitors alike. Tomorrow will be busier with Magic Kingdom attracting few people and Saturday is busier with the morning Extra Magic Hour. Still, touring efficiently is more important than “picking the right day,” especially at Hollywood Studios. That means arriving prior to Park opening and taking care of Toy Story Mania, Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster, and Tower of Terror first thing in the morning or with FastPass+ later in the day. Toy Story Mania will hit 60+ minutes in the afternoon due to its limited capacity. Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster also sees decent afternoon waits, likely in the 50-70 minute range, with limited FastPass+ availability. Plan to head there second or rely on FastPass+ later in the day. You may also want to prioritize characters that will have longer afternoon waits. The Toy Story characters across from Toy Story Mania typically have the longest waits. They usually begin greeting at 9:15am, so you’ll have time to ride Toy Story Mania at least once before heading over. Sofia the First is also popular and meets in Animation Courtyard, across from Voyage of the Little Mermaid. She typically begins appearing at 9:30am, giving you enough time to ride Toy Story Mania and meet the Toy Story characters before heading over by 9:25am. Phineas & Ferb tend to have the third longest lines in Hollywood Studios and they meet outdoors in an uncovered area, making them a high priority as well. They typically begin appearing at 9:30am, which means you could head there after the Toy Story characters or after the Toy Story characters and Sofia. They’re located near Mama Melrose’s Ristorante Italiano and across from the exit to Muppet Vision 3D. Check the week’s Times Guide to verify appearance times. Two other popular characters appear in the Animation Building in the Animation Courtyard. Sorcerer Mickey in particular has long afternoon waits and The Incredibles characters also tend to have decent lines. Since both characters meet indoors and their lines aren’t usually over 20 minutes long, you should be able to find them with decent waits later in the day if you have other morning priorities. Finally, you’ll find some characters in the morning near Mickey’s Sorcerer’s Hat that won’t appear later in the afternoon. Daisy Duck, Chip, Dale, Goofy, Stitch, and Pluto are all common, but no specific character is guaranteed to appear. Overall, you can do well at the Studios if you arrive early and tour efficiently, but afternoon crowds will be decent. Arrive at 10:30am with everyone else and you’re looking at long lines at Toy Story Mania and Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster. You can still enjoy the various shows, but it’s going to be more difficult to experience those two attractions. Thankfully, Tower of Terror and Star Tours see shorter waits and plenty of FastPass+ availability. Still, Tower of Terror will hit 40-60 minutes in the afternoon and Star Tours should see 20 minute waits.

The morning Extra Magic Hour at Magic Kingdom will lure a lot of Disney resort guests and we also have the first Main Street Electrical Parade since Monday. Combined, this will make Magic Kingdom significantly busier than yesterday or tomorrow. You can have success provided you take advantage of the morning Extra Magic Hour by arriving no later than 7:30am and heading straight to Fantasyland or other open attractions in Tomorrowland. Move on to the headlining Mountain rides or character meet and greets when they open and you’ll be in excellent shape. However, you will find that crowds are heavier than recommended days in the afternoon. You’ll probably want to take a break from 1pm to 5pm or so and return in the evening to ride some major attractions with FastPass+, have dinner, see some high capacity attractions, and enjoy the evening spectaculars. Keep in mind that you would be much better off visiting on a recommended day if you aren’t Extra Magic Hours eligible or won’t arrive until 10am or later because it will be busier than recommended days from 11am onward.

Friday November 7

Animal Kingdom: 9am – 8pm (Not Recommended)

Morning Extra Magic Hour: 8am – 9am

Epcot: 9am – 10pm (Not Recommended)

Illuminations: 10pm

Hollywood Studios: 9am – 8pm (Recommended)

First night for Osborne Lights

Fantasmic: 6:30pm and 8pm

Magic Kingdom: 9am – 7pm (Most Recommended)

Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party

Festival of Fantasy Parade: 3pm, Main Street Electrical Parade: none, Wishes Fireworks: none

Animal Kingdom is not recommended today, thanks to the morning Extra Magic Hour that will attract Disney resort guests and the much later close than most other days this week, which will attract off-site visitors that equate longer operating hours with additional opportunities to visit the attractions. It’s also late enough in the week that many Disney vacationers will already have had an opportunity to visit the other Parks and they’ll naturally save Animal Kingdom for later in the week. With no special evening entertainment scheduled and no evening Extra Magic Hours to speak of, a lot of people will have Animal Kingdom on their minds. With so many recommended days during the week, there’s really no reason to visit today. You can still make today work if you’re Extra Magic Hours and arrive by 7:30am to take advantage of it. And crowds will be relatively low from 4pm to close should you wish to Park Hop over for a few hours to hit your favorites.

Epcot isn’t recommended, though it will be less busy than either of the next two days. If you’re trying to decide between today, tomorrow, and Sunday, then today would be best. However Fridays, particularly in World Showcase in the evening, are crowded. Most people will want to take advantage of the lower crowds at Magic Kingdom because it’s going to be much, much, much busier there tomorrow. If you are headed to Epcot today, you’ll want to arrive before Park opening and take care of Test Track, Sum of All Thrills, Mission: Space, and Soarin’ first thing in the morning. Plan to move up through World Showcase right at 11am if you have business up there, whether it be the attractions and shopping or the Food and Wine Festival booths. Crowds in World Showcase are only going to get larger as it gets later in the day. Plan to return to Future World at or before 5pm to avoid the heavy congestion in World Showcase. Overall, there are going to be a lot of people in Epcot, but you can “beat” them by arriving early and touring efficiently. If possible, try to see IllumiNations on another night because crowds will be thick in World Showcase from 5pm through close.

Hollywood Studios is recommended, though yesterday would have been better. Most people will want to take advantage of some of the lowest crowds of the week at Magic Kingdom. Fortunately, Animal Kingdom will be pulling more Disney resort guests and Epcot will be incredibly popular for the International Food and Wine Festival. The Studios will be busier tomorrow with the morning Extra Magic Hour attracting resort guests. As always, it’s much more important to arrive by 8:15am and take care of Toy Story Mania and Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster first thing than it is to simply “pick the right day” and show up at 11am. With the above average overall crowd level and recommendation, Toy Story Mania will see 90+ minute waits in the afternoon and Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster won’t be far behind. There’s no way around that with their limited capacities and the few number of rides in the Park. Arrive early and tour efficiently and you can do very well. While this is the first night for Osborne Lights, it shouldn’t impact wait times and crowds during the day. The Lights will be crowded in the evening, as they will be most every night from now until January.

Magic Kingdom is our best choice as far as crowds are concerned. This may seem like an odd statement, considering that the operating hours are just 9am to 7pm, but that’s precisely why crowds will be so low. The great majority of Disney vacationers would prefer to visit the Parks when the hours are longer because it seems like more time in the Parks equates to higher value for your money. That seems logical considering the cost to enter the Parks is the same, regardless if Magic Kingdom is open from 8am to 1am or 9am to 7pm. However, crowds are so much lower on Mickey’s Christmas Party days that you’ll actually be able to get more done in a shorter amount of time. Most off-site vacationers will hold off until tomorrow for the longer hours, Main Street Electrical Parade, and Wishes and a lot of Disney resort guests will have visited yesterday for the morning Extra Magic Hour and the Electrical Parade. Tomorrow’s evening Extra Magic Hours will attract even more resort guests. All of this leaves us with ample opportunity to get on the headlining and Fantasyland rides with minimal waits. As always, you’ll find the most success if you arrive prior to opening and head straight for Space Mountain, Fantasyland, or another priority. Use FastPass+ in the afternoon when wait times peak and you should be able to do just about every major ride and many of the secondary attractions as well. If you would also like to see the Main Street Electrical Parade and Wishes, consider spending a second day at the Magic Kingdom when those nighttime spectaculars are scheduled. Ideally, you would Park Hop over to the Magic Kingdom in the afternoon or evening, after spending the majority of your day at a Park with lower crowds. Either way, focus on getting the most popular attractions out of the way today and return to the Magic Kingdom for the nighttime spectaculars on another date. With only one day to spend at the Magic Kingdom, you’ll need to decide whether seeing Wishes and the Main Street Electrical Parade are worth spending the day in heavier crowds.

Saturday November 8

Animal Kingdom: 9am – 8pm (Most Recommended)

Epcot: 9am – 9pm (Not Recommended)

Wine and Dine Half Marathon

Illuminations: 9pm

Hollywood Studios: 9am – 8pm (Not Recommended)

Morning Extra Magic Hour: 8am – 9am

Fantasmic: 6:30pm and 8pm

Magic Kingdom: 9am – 11pm (Not Recommended)

Evening Extra Magic Hours: 11pm – 1am

Festival of Fantasy Parade: 3pm, Main Street Electrical Parade: 9pm and 11pm, Wishes Fireworks: 10pm

Animal Kingdom is the only expressly recommended Park. The morning Jingle Jungle Marathon that begins at 7am is a bit of a concern, but it’s still your best choice. The race starts at 7am and will be long over by 9am. The problem is the number of people that will arrive, run the race, and then stick around for opening. It’s going to mean more people in the Park at opening than there would be otherwise, but it will still be more than manageable over the course of the day. Yesterday’s morning Extra Magic Hour will be more popular with Disney resort guests and we have a lot going on elsewhere. Magic Kingdom is going to be attracting a ton of people with the longer operating hours, Main Street Electrical Parade, Wishes, and evening Extra Magic Hours. Hollywood Studios will be busy with the morning Extra Magic Hour to attract Disney resort guests. Epcot is going to be incredibly crowded with the Food and Wine Festival and Marathon. Animal Kingdom is overwhelmingly your best choice. To have the most success, arrive by 8:15am and head straight for Kilimanjaro Safaris and Expedition Everest. Once you get through these two attractions, you have little to worry about other than trying to get to the scheduled shows. Finding Nemo and Festival of the Lion King do get busy during the afternoon shows, so try to see the first or last show of the day. You’ll also want to get to DinoLand USA before 10:30am to ride Primeval Whirl and DINOSAUR because those two attractions are popular. Finally, crowds disperse in the afternoon. Stay through close finishing the day in Asia to find much shorter waits than the afternoon.

Epcot will be considerably busier than usual due to the incredibly popular International Food and Wine Festival and the addition of the after-hours Marathon. The Marathon specifically won’t bring in a ton of people, but it will only add to already heavy crowds. The Food and Wine Festival attracts tons of locals, especially in the afternoon and evening in the World Showcase where the majority of the Food and Wine events take place. Although the effect of the Food and Wine Festival crowds on Future World and the headlining attractions isn’t as great, we’re still much better off waiting until Tuesday or Wednesday (ideally) to visit. Expect incredibly heavy crowds from 1pm through IllumiNations. If you can’t visit Epcot any other day, make sure you arrive by 8:15am and visit Test Track, Sum of All Thrills, Mission Space, and Soarin’ in the morning or follow a touring plan. Move up through the Mexico and Norway Pavilions in the World Showcase at 11am if you can’t get to the World Showcase on another day. The World Showcase will be buzzing from 1pm through close and it will be very difficult to move around with the heavier crowds, even if the attractions won’t necessarily be that much busier than usual. If you’re trying to decide between visiting Epcot on Friday, Saturday, or Sunday, I would recommend Friday and then Sunday over Saturday.

Hollywood Studios is not recommended, thanks to the morning Extra Magic Hour that will attract enough Disney resort guests to cause wait times to be much longer than recommended days. With Toy Story Mania’s hourly capacity under 1,000 riders and a total of five rides in the Park, it doesn’t take many more people to increase wait times substantially. You can have success from 8am – 11am if you are Extra Magic Hours eligible and arrive by 7:20am, but the afternoon and evening are going to be busier than just about any day this week. Avoid it unless you can’t visit any other day or plan to arrive by 7:30am to take advantage of low crowds in the morning. With Magic Kingdom and Epcot attracting so many people, you can have a viable day at the Studios. But tomorrow would be considerably better.

Whoa nelly. Saturdays are naturally the busiest day of the week at the Magic Kingdom. We have longer hours of operation, visiting locals, and a lot of vacationers who will be visiting the Magic Kingdom for a second time before returning home tomorrow. On top of that, Main Street Electrical Parade is only scheduled on a limited number of nights this week. Because the Parade is so popular, a lot of people will visit on a day that they can see it, like today. AND THEN ON TOP OF THAT, we also have the extremely popular evening Extra Magic Hours at Magic Kingdom to attract Disney resort guests. As if Disney needed to do anything to increase already naturally heavy crowds. It’s by the far the busiest day of the week at Magic Kingdom, especially with the higher overall crowd level for the holiday, marathon, and New Jersey crowds. However, you can have a moderate amount of success today if you arrive prior to 9am and head straight for the headlining or Fantasyland attractions. The afternoon will be busier than any other day this week and you’ll want to take a break from 2pm to at least 7pm when crowds peak. You can also do very well in the late evening, particularly after 10pm when most families are already gone. While it is possible to have a decent day here if you arrive early and tour efficiently, there are much less crowded days to visit during the week. If you are staying for Extra Magic Hours, begin in Adventureland because most people will head to Tomorrowland and Fantasyland first. Next, move up through Frontierland and Liberty Square on your way to Tomorrowland. Save Fantasyland for last because most families will be long gone from the Park and Fantasyland will be nearly desolate. Save Peter Pan’s Flight and Mine Train for the very end of the night. Stay through close because crowds will only get lower as it gets later in the evening. While tomorrow is also not recommended, it will be less crowded overall and a better day to visit overall.

Sunday November 9

Animal Kingdom: 9am – 8pm (Tentatively Recommended)

Morning Extra Magic Hour: 8am – 9am

Epcot: 9am – 9pm (Not Recommended)

Illuminations: 9pm

Hollywood Studios: 9am – 8pm (Most Recommended)

Fantasmic: 6:30pm and 8pm

Magic Kingdom: 9am – 11pm (Not Recommended)

Festival of Fantasy Parade: 3pm, Main Street Electrical Parade: 9pm and 11pm, Wishes Fireworks: 10pm

Animal Kingdom is tentatively recommended now that it’s hosting a morning Extra Magic Hour. If you are Extra Magic Hours eligible, you can have a tremendous amount of success if you arrive by 7:40am and tour efficiently. You’ll find short waits nearly everywhere through 9:30am and be able to attend the first  and least crowded Festival of the Lion King or Finding Nemo show after moving through the priority attractions like Kilimanjaro Safaris, Expedition Everest, Adventurer’s Outpost Mickey and Minnie Meet, Primeval Whirl, and DINOSAUR. If you’re not eligible for Extra Magic Hours or plan to arrive after 9am, tomorrow and Tuesday would be easier touring experiences because you won’t have to contend with people already inside the Park before you’re even allowed to enter. Wait times decrease beginning around 3pm and the final two hours of the day see short waits. Visit DinoLand after 6pm and Asia after 7pm to find lower waits than the afternoon.

Epcot will be busy again for the International Food and Wine Festival. Many locals know how busy Saturdays are and they wait until Sunday to visit. Others will wait until Sunday to visit because they’re more interested in the special events scheduled that day. Because the Food and Wine Festival runs every day during the week, there’s really no benefit to visiting over the weekend if you have flexibility in which day you visit, unless you’re planning to attend a special event or workshop that is only offered on the weekend. For most locals, visiting on the weekend is much more convenient than trying to swing a weekday visit, particularly over a holiday like this one. You can find success if you arrive by 8:15am and head straight for Test Track, Sum of All Thrills, Mission Space, and Soarin’, but you would be much better off waiting until tomorrow to visit when you won’t need to worry as much about Food and Wine crowds. The World Showcase will be busier than usual in the afternoon and evening.

Hollywood Studios is the most recommended Park. We’re in between yesterday’s morning Extra Magic Hour and tomorrow’s evening Extra Magic Hours, both of which will be more popular with Disney resort guests. We also have Main Street Electrical Parade and Wishes at Magic Kingdom to draw people in that direction and a morning Extra Magic Hour at Animal Kingdom attracting a few resort guests. Finally, Sunday is a popular travel day and few people arriving will head out to the Studios for Fantasmic this evening. Those that arrived yesterday are also unlikely to begin their first full day at Hollywood Studios. With the higher overall crowd level due to the holiday, today will be busier than other days surrounding it with lower overall crowd levels, but the Studios still is the best choice today. In order to find the shortest waits, you’ll need to arrive by 8:15am and head straight to Toy Story Mania to ride and/or rely on FastPass+ later in the day. Because of its popularity and extremely limited capacity, Toy Story Mania almost always has afternoon waits of 60 or more minutes. It’s always your top priority. The second attraction with the longest peak wait is Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster, which should be ridden immediately after Toy Story Mania in the morning or with FastPass+. Other priorities are Tower of Terror, Great Movie Ride, and Star Tours, though FastPass+ are more plentiful at both attractions and standby waits are usually lower. After you get through these four headliners, it’s just a matter of arriving in time to see the various stage shows that run on a set schedule and getting over to the Studios’ high capacity attractions. You may also have characters to visit before lines get longer. For the first Fantasmic, you’ll want to arrive about 60 minutes early to guarantee good seats together. If that sounds like it’s about 30 minutes too long, consider the Fantasmic Dining Package that guarantees everyone on the reservation a seat in the reserved section of the Fantasmic theater. It will still require you to arrive at least 20 minutes early, or you run the risk of Disney opening the reserved section up to the general population, but it saves the stress of having to decide when it’s time to line up and decreases the overall wait. The Fantasmic Dining Package makes the most sense on the Disney Dining Plan because it costs the same one table service credit at Mama Melrose’s Ristorante Italiano or Hollywood & Vine and two table service credits at Hollywood Brown Derby that you would pay otherwise. Plus, it includes the appetizer, which you normally wouldn’t receive on the Disney Dining Plan. If the Package isn’t available or you’re not interested, see the second Fantasmic because it will be less crowded. While it’s officially a recommended day, arriving prior to Park opening and hitting the headliners first thing is more important than which day you pick. Arrive at 11am, no matter the recommendation or the overall crowd level, and you’ll be looking at long lines at Toy Story Mania and Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster. This coming Tuesday and Wednesday are also recommended.

Magic Kingdom is not recommended. The long operating hours and both nighttime spectaculars will attract on-site and off-site visitors alike and we only have a lowly morning Extra Magic Hour at Disney’s least popular theme park to otherwise attract resort guests. Few people will be looking to visit tomorrow with the 7pm close and lack of nighttime entertainment during regular Park hours. Now that evening Extra Magic Hours have moved to Saturday, you can do well in the morning from 9am-11am and in the final two hours of operation, but the afternoon from 11am-7pm will be considerably busier than recommended days during the week, especially tomorrow and Friday. With elevated crowds for the Veterans Day holiday, your time is best spent elsewhere, but Magic Kingdom still works with an intelligent touring plan.

Monday November 10

Animal Kingdom: 9am – 6pm (Highly Recommended)

Epcot: 9am – 9pm (Not Recommended)

Illuminations: 9pm

Hollywood Studios: 9am – 8pm (Not Recommended)

Evening Extra Magic Hours: 8pm – 10pm

Fantasmic: 6:30pm and 8pm

Magic Kingdom: 9am – 7pm (Most Recommended)

Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party

Festival of Fantasy Parade: 3pm, Main Street Electrical Parade: 9pm, Wishes Fireworks: 10pm

Animal Kingdom is highly recommended. Hollywood Studios will be attracting the resort guest crowd and it’s early enough in the week that few people will be visiting Disney’s least popular theme park this early in their vacation or over a short holiday trip. We’re also coming off a morning Extra Magic Hour yesterday that will be more attractive to resort guests.

Epcot isn’t recommended with this being the last day of the International Food and Wine Festival continuing to bring in crowds. Today would be better than any day over the weekend, each which will be busier with the Marathon and holiday crowds. You can still do very well by arriving by 8:15am and taking care of the priorities first thing. Move up through World Showcase as close to 11am as possible to beat the impending crowds if you’re interested in anything World Showcase. Return to Future World after 5pm when most people will have moved up through Mexico and Canada.

Hollywood Studios will be busy due to the evening Extra Magic Hours that are popular with Disney resort guests and later Fantasmic, which will attract some resort guests as well. The morning will be an okay time to tour, but crowds will increase around 11am as more and more Disney resort guests arrive. Unfortunately, I’m not too fond of evening Extra Magic Hours at Hollywood Studios. There are only a few attractions open and the waits for Toy Story Mania, Rock ‘N’ Roller Coaster, Tower of Terror, and Star Tours will likely be just as long as they were during the day. In addition, 9,000+ people will exit Fantasmic at 7pm and again at 8:30pm, right as evening Extra Magic Hours gets underway. The Fantasmic Theater is located right on Sunset Boulevard, across from the entrances to Tower of Terror and Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster. While not everyone seeing Fantasmic will be a Disney resort guest, many of them will be, and a ton will be headed to Tower of Tower and Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster because they truly believe it’s the best time to get in line. Unfortunately, they’ll find themselves lined up with a few thousand of their new best friends. If you’re staying for evening Extra Magic Hours, your best bet is always to save these headlining attractions for the very end of the night and visit Toy Story Mania last. While you could theoretically have success if you arrive prior to Park opening and head straight for the headliners, the same will be true later in the week and you won’t have to deal with the significantly heavier afternoon and evening crowds. Tomorrow is a much better day to visit.

While the traditional advice is to avoid Magic Kingdom on holidays, we don’t need to be too concerned about Veterans Day with the short hours of operation and lack of nighttime entertainment during regular Park hours. We’re coming off an extremely popular day at Magic Kingdom yesterday, with longer hours of operation and both evening spectaculars. Today, we have Mickey’s Christmas Party and the 9am to 7pm hours that accompany it. Historically, Veterans Day Monday is an excellent day to visit and there’s nothing this year to indicate that will change. The abbreviated schedule will cause many people to wait until tomorrow, Wednesday or Saturday to visit and we shouldn’t see elevated crowds specifically due to the holiday. I have no qualms about recommending it wholeheartedly. As always, plan to arrive prior to Park opening, head to the most popular attractions immediately after Park opening, use FastPass+ in the afternoon, and visit the less popular attractions in the afternoon when lines to the headliners are longer. 9am – 10:30am in particular will see incredibly low crowd levels and afternoon crowds won’t be unmanageable.

Tuesday November 11

Animal Kingdom: 9am – 6pm (Most Recommended)

Epcot: 9am – 9pm (Tentatively Recommended)

Morning Extra Magic Hour: 8am – 9am

Illuminations: 9pm

Hollywood Studios: 9am – 8pm (Recommended)

Fantasmic: 6:30pm

Magic Kingdom: 9am – 10pm (Not Recommended)

Festival of Fantasy Parade: 3pm, Main Street Electrical Parade: 8pm and 10pm, Wishes Fireworks: 9pm

Animal Kingdom is the most recommended Park. We don’t have special events, Extra Magic Hours, or anything specific drawing people toward it. Yesterday’s morning Extra Magic Hours will be more popular with Disney resort guests and we have another tomorrow that will be even more popular. It’s early enough in the week that many people on weeklong vacations will be saving Animal Kingdom for later in the week. A lot of people will also be visiting Magic Kingdom with the longer hours of operation, Wishes, and a rare Electrical Parade. To have the most success, arrive prior to Park opening and head straight for Kilimanjaro Safaris and Expedition Everest. You’ll have no trouble riding both with very low waits before 10am. Once you get through these two attractions, you have little to worry about other than trying to get to the scheduled shows. Finding Nemo and Festival of the Lion King do get busy during the afternoon shows, so try to see the first or last show of the day. You’ll also want to get to DinoLand USA before 10:30am to ride Primeval Whirl and DINOSAUR because those two attractions are popular. Still, they aren’t necessarily your top morning priorities. You should have no trouble experiencing most everything Animal Kingdom has to offer in one day, provided you arrive early in the morning, tour efficiently, use FastPass+ intelligently, and keep an eye on the time in order to see the scheduled stage shows. Finally, crowds disperse in the afternoon. Plan to stay through close because waits will only get shorter as it gets later in the evening. Visit DinoLand after 4pm and Asia after 5pm to find much lower waits than the afternoon.

Epcot is tentatively recommended because it’s the first day since mid-7September that the Food and Wine Festival won’t be going on and World Showcase crowds in particular will be much lower. Magic Kingdom will be attracting more people than usual with the long hours of operation and both nighttime spectaculars. If you’re eligible for morning Extra Magic Hour, you can have a tremendous amount of success if you arrive by 8:25am and head straight to Soarin’ or Test Track. If you’re not eligible or won’t be arriving until later, then tomorrow or Thursday would be significantly better because resort guests won’t have a head start.

Hollywood Studios is recommended with Epcot attracting the resort contingent and Magic Kingdom pulling in a lot of people with the longer hours of operation and both nighttime spectaculars. As always, it’s more important to arrive by 8:15am and tour efficiently than it is to “pick the right day.”

Magic Kingdom is not expressly recommended. With fewer people headed there yesterday with the short hours and lack of evening entertainment, today will look similar to the typical Monday. Mondays are usually busier due to the longer hours of operation, fact that a lot of people arrive over the weekend and want to visit the Most Magical Place on Earth on their first full day, and rarer evening entertainment. Since that isn’t offered on this particular Monday, Tuesday will be a fill-in. While Epcot will attract some on-site visitors with the morning Extra Magic Hour, it won’t do much to sway the off-site contingent. You can still do well today if you arrive prior to Park opening, take care your priorities first thing, take an extended afternoon break from 1pm to 5pm or so, and return in the evening for dinner, some late night attractions, and the nighttime entertainment. But yesterday and this coming Friday are the least crowded days to visit. Take that into consideration.

Wednesday November 12

Animal Kingdom: 9am – 6pm (Not Recommended)

Morning Extra Magic Hour: 8am – 9am

Epcot: 9am – 9pm (Most Recommended)

Illuminations: 9pm

Hollywood Studios: 9am – 8pm (Recommended)

Fantasmic: 6:30pm

Magic Kingdom: 9am – 10pm (Recommended)

Festival of Fantasy Parade: 3pm, Main Street Electrical Parade: none, Wishes Fireworks: 9pm

It’s the busiest day of the week at Animal Kingdom. The morning Extra Magic Hour will attract the bulk of the Disney resort crowd and there’s no evening Extra Magic Hours or special evening entertainment going on at the other Parks, which will cause a lot of off-site guests to visit as well. With both yesterday and tomorrow recommended, there’s no reason to visit today. However, if you are Extra Magic Hours eligible and able to arrive by 7:30am, you can have a tremendous amount of success from 8am – 10am. But the afternoon is going to be busier than any other day this week.

Epcot is the most recommended Park. We’re coming off a popular morning Extra Magic Hour yesterday and most Disney resort guests will be waiting to either return or visit for their first time this Friday. Disney resort guests are more likely to head to Animal Kingdom and Magic Kingdom will be attracting crowds with the later hours of operation and Wishes. As always, follow my broken-record advice – arrive by 8:15am and head straight to Test Track, Sum of All Thrills, Mission: Space, and Soarin’. You may also want to take a more compartmentalized two-day approach, which gives you the benefit of enjoying the lowest possible crowds in both Future World and World Showcase each day. Plan to use FastPass+ at Soarin’ or Test Track later in the day when waits are longer. The single rider line at Test Track often has an actual wait shorter than standby or FastPass+, so consider that as an option. You may also want to get in line for Soarin’ or Test Track right before Epcot closes to find shorter waits than the afternoon, but only if you’re willing to give up seeing IllumiNations. Mission: SPACE should have nominal waits before 11am or after 7pm and is a lower priority. If you’re planning just one day in Epcot, try to move up through the World Showcase right at 11am. These are the only two attractions in World Showcase that will see wait times. Return to Future World after 5pm to visit any attractions that you skipped in the morning. Keep in mind that some Future World attractions close at 7pm. Expect Ellen’s Energy Adventure, Journey into Imagination with Figment, Captain EO, Living with the Land, Circle of Life, and both Innoventions buildings to accept their last guests of the day at 7pm. Overall, it’s a good day to visit Epcot and a fine day to stay for dinner and IllumiNations, provided you tour efficiently in the morning.

Hollywood Studios comes recommended with Magic Kingdom drawing more guests with the later close and Animal Kingdom being attractive to resort guests. Arriving prior to Park opening and touring efficiently is more important than picking the “right” day. To have the most success, you’ll still want to arrive by 8:15am and head straight for Toy Story Mania, Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster, and Tower of Terror. Because Toy Story Mania has such a limited capacity, wait times are almost always 60+ minutes in the afternoon – expect peak waits in the 90-minute range. You’ll want to make it your top priority. Your second priority is Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster, which also sees long afternoon waits and limited FastPass+ availability. Tower of Terror, Great Movie Ride, and Star Tours should be easier to ride, but also remain priorities. If you can get these attractions done in the early morning, you’ll be in great shape for the rest of the day. The only other problem most people run into is trying to schedule all of the stage shows that run on a set schedule. You may also want to prioritize characters that will have longer afternoon waits. The Toy Story characters across from Toy Story typically meet beginning at 9am and have the longest afternoon waits. Sofia the First usually has the second longest waits and meets in Animation Courtyard beginning at 9:30am. Phineas & Ferb also see long lines. They typically begin appearing at 9:30am, which means you’ll have time to ride Toy Story Mania before heading over to the Toy Story characters and then over to Sofia or Phineas & Ferb, which are located near Mama Melrose’s Ristorante Italiano and across from the exit to Muppet Vision 3D. Check the week’s Times Guide to verify appearance times. Two other popular characters appear in the Animation Building in the Animation Courtyard. Sorcerer Mickey in particular has long afternoon waits and The Incredibles characters also tend to have decent lines. Since both characters meet indoors and their lines aren’t usually over 20 minutes long, you should be able to find them with decent waits later in the day if you have other morning priorities. Finally, you’ll find some characters in the morning near Mickey’s Sorcerer’s Hat that won’t appear later in the afternoon. Daisy Duck, Donald Duck, Chip, Dale, Stitch, Goofy, and Pluto are all common, but no specific character is guaranteed to appear. For Fantasmic, consider the Fantasmic Dining Package that guarantees everyone on the reservation a seat in the reserved section of the theater. You’ll still need to arrive at least 20 minutes early, but it’s better than the 60+ minutes early you’ll need to arrive without the package. The Dining Package makes the most sense on the Disney Dining Plan because it only costs one table service credit (except at Hollywood Brown Derby, which still costs two credits as it would otherwise) and includes the appetizer. As far as general seating is concerned, the best seats are about half way up in the center sections. Sit any closer and you run the risk of getting wet and it’s more difficult to see what’s happening on the water.

Magic Kingdom is recommended today and it’s your best opportunity to visit and see Wishes in the evening. We also have a morning Extra Magic Hour tomorrow that will be more attractive to Disney resort guests. We’re also coming off a busier day yesterday with both nighttime spectaculars. If you’re looking for the absolute lowest crowds, Friday would be better, but you won’t have the opportunity to see Wishes in the evening. If you do visit today, take advantage of the relatively low crowds by arriving prior to Park opening and head straight for Fantasyland (Mine Train, Peter Pan’s Flight, Winnie the Pooh), the headlining Mountain rides (Space Mountain, Big Thunder Mountain, Splash Mountain), or other time sensitive attractions (Astro Orbiter, Tomorrowland Indy Speedway). Popular characters that don’t offer FastPass+ may also be a priority. You’ll be able to accomplish a ton of attractions in a short amount of time if you make efficient use of the morning and use FastPass+ at the priority attractions in the early afternoon or evening. Consider taking a break from 1pm to 5pm or so when crowds and wait times peak. Return in the evening for dinner, some late night attractions, and Wishes. Overall, Magic Kingdom is a good choice if you’d like to see Wishes, but it will be busier than tomorrow or Friday with the later close and entertainment.

Thursday November 13

Animal Kingdom: 9am – 7pm (Not Recommended)

Epcot: 9am – 9pm (Most Recommended)

Illuminations: 9pm

Hollywood Studios: 9am – 8pm (Not Recommended)

Fantasmic: 6:30pm

Magic Kingdom: 9am –7pm (Tentatively Recommended)

Morning Extra Magic Hour: 8am – 9am

Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party

Festival of Fantasy Parade: 3pm, Main Street Electrical Parade: none, Wishes Fireworks: none

Animal Kingdom is not expressly recommended, though it won’t be a terrible day there. We have few people headed to Magic Kingdom with the short hours of operation. The morning Extra Magic Hour at Magic Kingdom won’t draw nearly the same number of people as usual with the short hours of operation and lack of evening entertainment during regular Park hours. We also don’t have evening Extra Magic Hours scheduled anywhere. You can still do well by arriving prior to Park opening and taking care of the main priorities first thing in the morning, but it will be busier than the many recommended days during the week. Most people will want to take advantage of the better days at Epcot or Magic Kingdom.

Epcot is the most recommended Park. Tomorrow’s evening Extra Magic Hours will be more attractive to Disney resort guests. Magic Kingdom’s morning Extra Magic Hour will help pull resort guests and Fantasmic at Hollywood Studios continues to draw crowds. Plan to arrive prior to Park opening and head straight to Test Track, Sum of All Thrills, Mission: Space, and Soarin’ or follow a more compartmentalized two-day touring plan if you prefer. If you arrive later, plan to use FastPass+ at Soarin or Test Track because they will have 60+ minute waits for most of the day after 10:30am due to popularity and relatively low capacities. Getting in line right before Park close will also result in a short wait if you can’t ride any other time. Move on to the World Showcase beginning around 11am if crowds begin to build in Future World. Return to Future World after 5pm if you have more to accomplish and to ride/re-ride the headliners with FastPass+. It’s also a great day to stay for dinner and IllumiNations.

With no evening entertainment at Magic Kingdom, short hours at Magic Kingdom, no evening Extra Magic Hours anywhere, and nothing special happening at Epcot or Animal Kingdom, Hollywood Studios is going to be busier than recommended days during the week. Plus, it’s later in the week, which means most people on a weeklong vacation will already have visited Magic Kingdom and Epcot and they’ll be looking to spend a day at one of Disney World’s less popular theme parks. With nothing specific drawing people to the Studios, it’s not going to be crazy crowded, but it is going to be busier than other recommended days during the week and should be avoided if possible.

Magic Kingdom is tentatively recommended today, which is rare for a day with a morning Extra Magic Hour attached. However, the 9am to 7pm operating schedule and Mickey’s Christmas Party in the evening make the Magic Kingdom significantly less crowded. While the Extra Magic Hours schedule is a major deciding factor for Disney resort guests because many of them feel like it’s Disney’s way of dictating where they belong each day, the short hours will be a bigger turn off. Over the past several years, Thursdays with a morning Extra Magic Hour and a 7pm close have not been much busier than other Mickey’s Party dates over the course of the week. Days with longer hours of operation and nighttime entertainment remain much more popular. In other words, the morning Extra Magic Hour will attract some Disney resort guests, but the short hours of operation will cause many of them to head elsewhere. Off-site visitors are much more likely to visit on a day with longer operating hours and both nighttime spectaculars. If you are Extra Magic Hours eligible, you can have a huge amount of success if you arrive by 7:40am and head straight for Fantasyland or other priorities. You should have no trouble riding all Fantasyland attractions in the first hour and you can move to the headlining Mountain rides or popular characters after that. If you aren’t Extra Magic Hours eligible or don’t arrive until after 9am, head straight for Fantasyland or Tomorrowland where you should find short standby waits at most attractions. Tomorrow will be slightly less crowded overall. If you’re not Extra Magic Hours eligible or don’t plan to arrive until after 9am, then Friday would be the better choice.

Friday November 14

Animal Kingdom: 9am – 7pm (Recommended)

Epcot: 9am – 9pm (Not Recommended)

Evening Extra Magic Hours: 9pm – 11pm

Illuminations: 9pm

Hollywood Studios: 9am – 8pm (Not Recommended)

Fantasmic: 6:30pm and 8pm

Magic Kingdom: 9am – 7pm (Most Recommended)

Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party

Festival of Fantasy Parade: 3pm, Main Street Electrical Parade: none, Wishes Fireworks: none

Animal Kingdom comes recommended. Epcot will be more popular with Disney resort guests with evening Extra Magic Hours and Hollywood Studios will be busier than tomorrow with the later close and Fantasmic. Arrive by 8:25am and take care of Kilimanjaro Safaris and Expedition Everest first thing and you’re set for the rest of the day.

We’ll want to avoid Epcot. Its evening Extra Magic Hours will lure the majority of Disney resort guests, which will lengthen waits times at the attractions for the entire afternoon and evening. Epcot is almost always at its busiest and lines are the longest when it has evening Extra Magic Hours. This is due to the fact that many Disney resort guests head to whichever Park has Extra Magic Hours, even if they don’t plan to take advantage of them. Without Park Hopper, Disney resort guests must stay in the Park with Extra Magic Hours for the entire day. The increased crowds lead to longer lines, heavier congestion in common areas, and an overall less pleasant touring experience. I would urge you to visit a different Park. If you want to head to Epcot today, despite my strong objections, your best chance to ride the headlining rides is from 9am-11am. Most Disney resort guests will sleep in and arrive around lunch in anticipation of staying until 10-11pm. The morning will be a decent time to tour Epcot, but you’ll probably want to Park Hop elsewhere after lunch or you’ll be stuck in significantly larger-than-usual crowds. You might also consider an afternoon break from 2pm-6pm when crowds will be at their largest. You could then return in the early evening for dinner and Extra Magic Hours. Alternatively, you could also Park Hop over in the evening for Extra Magic Hours, provided you’re aware of how busy it will be. With Extra Magic Hours only being two hours now, wait times at Soarin’ and Test Track won’t ease much until after 10:30pm. However, other attractions will see nominal waits and it’s a great time to take in Epcot’s natural ambiance and hit a few of the less popular/high capacity attractions. Skip Illuminations if you’ll be here on another night because it will be more crowded than usual. Overall, there’s no reason to visit Epcot today because crowds will be higher than any other day during the week and waits at Soarin’ and Test Track will be just as long as they were during the day until at least 10:30pm.

Hollywood Studios is not recommended. We have short hours and no evening entertainment during regular Park hours at Magic Kingdom, Disney World’s most popular theme park. While Epcot will be popular with Disney resort guests, a lot of off-site visitors will be saving the Studios and Fantasmic for tonight. While there’s nothing specific drawing people towards the Studios in particular, we can still expect to be busier than any of the past three days. It should be avoided unless you can’t visit another day. Tomorrow will be busier with the morning Extra Magic Hour, so take that into consideration if you need to visit today or tomorrow.

Magic Kingdom is our best choice as far as crowds are concerned. This may seem like an odd statement, considering that the operating hours are just 9am to 7pm, but that’s precisely why crowds will be so low. The great majority of Disney vacationers would prefer to visit the Parks when the hours are longer because it seems like more time in the Parks equates to higher value for your money. That seems logical considering the cost to enter the Parks is the same, regardless if Magic Kingdom is open from 8am to 1am or 9am to 7pm. However, crowds are so much lower on Mickey’s Christmas Party days that you’ll actually be able to get more done in a shorter amount of time. Most off-site vacationers will hold off until tomorrow for the longer hours, Main Street Electrical Parade, and Wishes and a lot of Disney resort guests will have visited yesterday for the morning Extra Magic Hour and the Electrical Parade. All of this leaves us with ample opportunity to get on the headlining and Fantasyland rides with minimal waits. As always, you’ll find the most success if you arrive prior to opening and head straight for Space/Big Thunder/Splash Mountains or Fantasyland. Use FastPass+ in the afternoon when wait times peak and you should be able to do just about every major ride and many of the secondary attractions as well. If you would also like to see the Main Street Electrical Parade and Wishes, consider spending a second day at the Magic Kingdom when those nighttime spectaculars are scheduled. Ideally, you would Park Hop over to the Magic Kingdom in the afternoon or evening after spending the majority of your day at a Park with lower crowds. Either way, focus on getting the most popular attractions out of the way today and return to the Magic Kingdom for the nighttime spectaculars on another date. With only one day to spend at the Magic Kingdom, you’ll need to decide whether seeing Wishes and the Main Street Electrical Parade are worth spending the day in heavier crowds.

Saturday November 15

Animal Kingdom: 9am – 7pm (Recommended)

Epcot: 9am – 9pm (Most Recommended)

Illuminations: 9pm

Hollywood Studios: 9am – 8pm (Not Recommended)

Morning Extra Magic Hour: 8am – 9am

Fantasmic: 6:30pm and 8pm

Magic Kingdom: 9am – 11pm (Not Recommended)

Evening Extra Magic Hours: 11pm – 1am

Festival of Fantasy Parade: 3pm, Main Street Electrical Parade: 9pm and 11pm, Wishes Fireworks: 10pm

Animal Kingdom is recommended. We don’t have Extra Magic Hours, special events, evening entertainment, or anything else to attract on-site or off-site visitors. Those leaving tomorrow after a traditional weeklong vacation are unlikely to visit Animal Kingdom on their last full day and most arriving today won’t head out to Animal Kingdom as their first destination. As always, you’ll be best off if you arrive prior to Park opening and head straight for Kilimanjaro Safaris and Expedition Everest. Wait times will only get shorter after the crowds disperse in the afternoon, so stay through close if you have more you’d like to accomplish, visiting DinoLand after 5pm and Asia after 6pm.

Epcot is the most recommended Park as we come off of a much busier day yesterday with evening Extra Magic Hours attracting the bulk of the Disney resort crowd. Magic Kingdom and Hollywood Studios will be attracting the majority of off-site and on-site visitors with long hours and plentiful evening entertainment. Take full advantage by arriving prior to Park opening and head straight to Test Track, followed by Sum of All Thrills, Mission: Space, and Soarin’. If Character Spot is a priority, visit after 7pm when waits will be shorter than the afternoon and you won’t have to waste precious morning time. It’s also an excellent day to stay for IllumiNations and enjoy the World Showcase in the afternoon because a lot of people will have their eyes on the Electrical Parade and Fantasmic.

Hollywood Studios is not recommended. The sizable Disney resort contingent numbers 75,000+ people. Because Disney sells the Extra Magic Hour program so well in its marketing materials, many of these Disney resort guests follow the Extra Magic Hours schedule because they think it’s Disney telling them where they belong each day. While you can have success if you are Extra Magic Hours eligible and arrive by 7:15am, most people will want to visit another day. Avoid it unless you can’t visit any other day or are certain you’ll arrive by 7:15am and plan to hit Toy Story Midway Mania, Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster, Tower of Terror, and Star Tours first thing in the morning. This past Thursday was the best day of the week to visit.

Saturdays are naturally the busiest day of the week at the Magic Kingdom. We have longer hours of operation, visiting locals, and a lot of vacationers who will be visiting the Magic Kingdom for a second time before returning home tomorrow. On top of that, Disney added evening Extra Magic Hours, attracting even more resort guests. On top of that, Main Street Electrical Parade is only scheduled on a limited number of nights this week. Because the Parade is so popular, a lot of people will visit on a day that they can see it, like today. Yesterday will be much less crowded with the 7pm close and lack of nighttime entertainment. Yesterday, tomorrow, and next Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday will be much better days to tour, but you can have a moderate amount of success today if you arrive prior to 8:30am and head straight for the headlining or Fantasyland attractions. You may elect to prioritize another low capacity attraction or character instead. The afternoon will be busier than any other day this week and you’ll either want to take a break and return for the Electrical Parade and Wishes or visit the less popular attractions from 2pm – 6pm. The relatively late night is also a good time to tour with short waits at most attractions after 10pm. See the second Electrical Parade because it will be less crowded than the first, particularly in Liberty Square or Frontierland.

If you’re planning to visit during evening Extra Magic Hours, begin in Adventureland or Frontierland because most people will head straight for Tomorrowland or Fantasyland. Visit Tomorrowland or Fantasyland in the final hour to find shorter waits. While it is possible to have a decent day here if you arrive early and tour efficiently, there are much less crowded days to visit during the week.

Sunday November 16

Animal Kingdom: 8am – 6pm (Highly Recommended)

Epcot: 9am – 9pm (Recommended)

Illuminations: 9pm

Hollywood Studios: 9am – 8pm (Not Recommended)

Evening Extra Magic Hours: 8pm – 10pm

Fantasmic: 6:30pm and 8pm

Magic Kingdom: 8am – 7pm (Most Recommended)

Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party

Festival of Fantasy Parade: 3pm, Main Street Electrical Parade: none, Wishes Fireworks: none

Animal Kingdom is recommended. Disney resort guests are more likely to visit Animal Kingdom tomorrow for morning Extra Magic Hour and it’s unlikely anyone arriving over the weekend will begin their vacation with Disney’s least popular theme park. Despite the relatively short operating hours, you should be able to do just about everything the Park has to offer if you arrive prior to Park opening. Focus on riding Kilimanjaro Safaris and Expedition Everest as early as possible or use FastPass+. After getting those out of the way, move on to DinoLand USA or one of the more popular shows – either Finding Nemo the Musical or Festival of the Lion King and you’ll be set for the rest of the day. Keep in mind that crowds disperse in the afternoon and the last hour of operation will only have diminishing waits. End the day in Asia with Kali River Rapids and Expedition Everest and waits will be nearly nonexistent.

Epcot remains recommended with the low overall crowd level and Hollywood Studios pulling resort guests. Most people will want to take advantage of lower crowds at Magic Kingdom and wait until Monday to visit when more is going on elsewhere. You can still do perfectly well by arriving prior to Park opening and heading straight for Soarin’ or Test Track. Use FastPass+ at the other and you’ll have taken care of the headliners in Future World. Move up through World Showcase as close to 11am as possible and you’re set for the day.

Hollywood Studios will be busy due to the evening Extra Magic Hours that are popular with Disney resort guests and the second Fantasmic, which will attract off-site guess as well. The morning will be an okay time to tour, but crowds will increase around 11am as more and more Disney resort guests arrive. Unfortunately, I’m not too fond of evening Extra Magic Hours at Hollywood Studios. There are only a few attractions open and the waits for Toy Story Mania, Rock ‘N’ Roller Coaster, Tower of Terror, and Star Tours will likely be just as long as they were during the day. In addition, 9,000+ people will exit Fantasmic at 7pm and again at 8:30pm, right as evening Extra Magic Hours gets underway. The Fantasmic Theater is located right on Sunset Boulevard, across from the entrances to Tower of Terror and Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster. While not everyone seeing Fantasmic will be a Disney resort guest, many of them will be, and a ton will be headed to Tower of Tower and Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster because they truly believe it’s the best time to get in line. Unfortunately, they’ll find themselves lined up with a few thousand of their new best friends. If you’re staying for evening Extra Magic Hours, your best bet is always to save these headlining attractions for the very end of the night and visit Toy Story Mania last. While you could theoretically have success if you arrive prior to Park opening and head straight for the headliners, the same will be true later in the week and you won’t have to deal with the significantly heavier afternoon and evening crowds. Tuesday and Thursday are considerably better days to visit.

Magic Kingdom is the most recommended Park. The short hours and lack of evening entertainment will cause a lot of casual vacationers to head elsewhere. We’re coming off a very busy day yesterday with the longer operating hours and both nighttime spectaculars. On top of that, Sunday is a major travel day for those on a standard weeklong Disney vacation. With the early close, virtually none of them will start out with an abbreviated day at Magic Kingdom. Few people that arrived on Saturday will also visit a theme park with a seemingly short day and no nighttime spectaculars. If you’re looking to visit Magic Kingdom over two days, then you may want to visit on a Mickey’s Party date and another day where you can enjoy the nighttime spectaculars. This coming Wednesday would be the least crowded day to take in the Electrical Parade and Wishes as well as enjoy the Magic Kingdom as it gets dark. If you’re planning just one day at Magic Kingdom, then you’ll need to weigh whether you’re willing to put up with heavier crowds in order to enjoy both nighttime spectaculars. While the 7pm close may seem like a truncated day, I can assure you that eleven hours is a long time to spend in a theme park. If you arrive by 7:30am, you’ll be able to accomplish an amazing number of attractions in a short period of time if you head straight for Fantasyland or other important attractions, use FastPass+ in the afternoon when crowds peak, and visit the less popular attractions in the afternoon. Crowds will only diminish from 4pm to 6pm as people leave for dining reservations and other activities. Around 6pm you will begin to see an influx of people arriving for the Christmas Party, but they tend to congregate on Main Street waiting for their Party to begin, rather than heading for the attractions. Stay through 7pm because wait times will only decrease from their afternoon highs as it gets closer to 7pm. One thing about staying through 7pm is that at exactly 7pm (and possibly a couple of minutes before), the special characters will begin appearing for the Party. If you’re not planning to do the Party and have kids, you may want to leave around 6:30pm. Otherwise, your children may encounter a bunch of characters that they won’t be allowed to visit because you must have a Party ticket to get in line. There are no exceptions. Other than those minor inconveniences, this is going to be one of the three least crowded days of the week at Magic Kingdom.

Monday November 17

Animal Kingdom: 9am – 5pm (Not Recommended)

Morning Extra Magic Hour: 8am – 9am

Epcot: 9am – 9pm (Recommended)

Illuminations: 9pm

Hollywood Studios: 9am – 8pm (Recommended)

Fantasmic: 6:30pm

Magic Kingdom: 9am – 7pm (Most Recommended)

Festival of Fantasy Parade: 3pm, Main Street Electrical Parade: none, Wishes Fireworks: none

Animal Kingdom will be moderately more popular than recommended days due to the morning Extra Magic Hour that will attract a decent number of Disney resort guests. We also have fewer people heading to Magic Kingdom than usual with the short hours. While the morning Extra Magic Hour is an excellent time to tour, it’s difficult to get out there by 7:45am to take full advantage of it. If you’re staying at a Monorail Deluxe Resort, you’re looking at a 20+ minute drive to the Animal Kingdom, plus time for the bus to arrive – not to mention getting multiple people up and ready early in the morning with just one shower and limited space. At 6:30am. If you’re absolutely certain that you’ll arrive by 7:45am, then you can have a lot of success because the crowd level won’t be that high, but it will be busier in the afternoon than other recommended days this week due to a higher number of Disney resort guests than usual. You’re much better served holding off for a recommended day if you’re not going to arrive until 9am or later.

Epcot is recommended though it isn’t the most recommended Park with Magic Kingdom drawing fewer people than usual. Fortunately, we don’t have Extra Magic Hours, special evening entertainment, or anything else that will draw people toward Epcot specifically. Disney resort guests will be more likely to visit Epcot tomorrow or Friday for Extra Magic Hours. Still, with the limited number of attractions, it’s still more important to arrive by 8:15am and tour efficiently in the morning than it is to simply pick a recommended day. To have the most success, arrive prior to Park opening and head to Test Track, Sum of All Thrills, Mission: Space, and Soarin’ or follow one of the two-day compartmentalized touring plans. You’ll also be in the best shape if you’ve moved on to World Showcase by 12pm. Should you have more to accomplish in Future World, return after 5pm when most of the crowd has moved on to World Showcase. Just keep in mind that a lot of the Future World attractions close at 7pm. Usually, just Soarin, Test Track, Mission: Space, Spaceship Earth, The Seas with Nemo and Friends, and Character Spot continue to operate after 7pm. If Character Spot is on your itinerary, try to visit after 7pm when waits times are much lower than the afternoon. Overall, it’s a great day for Epcot and an excellent opportunity to spend time in both Future World and World Showcase.

Hollywood Studios is recommended as we come off two busier days in a row with Extra Magic Hours. The only problem is the early close at Magic Kingdom which will be drawing few people As always, it’s imperative that you arrive by 8:15am and take care of Toy Story Mania first thing. The Studios has a severely limited number of rides and wait times rise quickly even on the most recommended days with the lowest crowds. Tomorrow would be better and Thursday is the best day of the week to visit crowd-wise, though the Studios closes early and doesn’t offer Fantasmic.

Magic Kingdom is the best Park to visit with the abbreviated operating hours and lack of nighttime entertainment. Tomorrow will be significantly busier with the longer operating hours and both nighttime spectaculars. As always, plan to arrive prior to Park opening, head to the most popular attractions immediately after Park opening, use FastPass+ in the afternoon, and visit the less popular attractions in the afternoon when lines to the headliners are longer. 9am – 10:30am in particular will see incredibly low crowd levels and afternoon crowds won’t be unmanageable.

Tuesday November 18

Animal Kingdom: 8am – 5pm (Most Recommended)

Epcot: 9am – 9pm (Not Recommended)

Morning Extra Magic Hour: 8am – 9am

Illuminations: 9pm

Hollywood Studios: 9am – 8pm (Recommended)

Fantasmic: 6:30pm and 8pm

Magic Kingdom: 9am – 10pm (Not Recommended)

Festival of Fantasy Parade: 3pm, Main Street Electrical Parade: 8pm and 10pm, Wishes Fireworks: 9pm

Animal Kingdom is the most recommended park as we’re in between two morning Extra Magic Hours that will be more popular with resort guests. We don’t have special events, Extra Magic Hours, or anything specific drawing people toward it. It’s early enough in the week that many people on weeklong vacations will be saving Animal Kingdom for later in the week. A lot of people will also be visiting Magic Kingdom with the longer hours of operation and both nighttime spectaculars. To have the most success, arrive prior to Park opening and head straight for Kilimanjaro Safaris and Expedition Everest. You’ll have no trouble riding both with very low waits before 9am. Once you get through these two attractions, you have little to worry about other than trying to get to the scheduled shows. Finding Nemo and Festival of the Lion King do get busy during the afternoon shows, so try to see the first or last show of the day. You’ll also want to get to DinoLand USA before 10am to ride Primeval Whirl and DINOSAUR because those two attractions are popular. Still, they aren’t necessarily your top morning priorities. You should have no trouble experiencing most everything Animal Kingdom has to offer in one day, provided you arrive early in the morning, tour efficiently, use FastPass+ intelligently, and keep an eye on the time in order to see the scheduled stage shows. Finally, crowds disperse in the afternoon around 3pm. Plan to stay through close because waits will only get shorter as it gets later in the evening. Visit DinoLand after 3pm and Asia after 4pm to find much lower waits than the afternoon.

Epcot is not recommended. We have the morning Extra Magic Hour attracting the majority of Disney resort guests and a lot of off-site visitors who will naturally visit Epcot after the Magic Kingdom yesterday. Skip it unless you can’t get there any other day or are certain you’ll arrive prior to 8am for the morning Extra Magic Hour and plan to either Park Hop elsewhere or take a break in the afternoon.

Hollywood Studios is recommended. We have Epcot attracting resort guests with the morning Extra Magic Hour and Magic Kingdom will be pulling a lot of people with the nighttime entertainment and longer hours of operation. This coming Thursday will be less crowded with the earlier close and lack of Fantasmic, but today is a great day to visit and see Fantasmic in the evening.

Magic Kingdom is not expressly recommended. With fewer people headed there yesterday with the short hours and lack of evening entertainment, today will look similar to the typical Monday. Mondays are usually busier due to the longer hours of operation, fact that a lot of people arrive over the weekend and want to visit the Most Magical Place on Earth on their first full day, and rarer evening entertainment. Since that isn’t offered on this particular Monday, Tuesday will be a fill-in. While Epcot will attract some on-site visitors with the morning Extra Magic Hour, it won’t do much to sway the off-site contingent. You can still do well from 9am – 11am, but it’ll be busier than any other day this week other than Saturday from 11am – 9pm. If you can hold off until tomorrow, you’ll find a less crowded day and still be able to enjoy both nighttime spectaculars. But yesterday and this coming Friday are the least crowded days to visit. Take that into consideration.

Wednesday November 19

Animal Kingdom: 9am – 5pm (Not Recommended)

Morning Extra Magic Hour: 8am – 9am

Epcot: 9am – 9pm (Most Recommended)

Illuminations: 9pm

Hollywood Studios: 9am – 8pm (Recommended)

Fantasmic: none

Magic Kingdom: 9am – 10pm (Tentatively Recommended For Nighttime Entertainment)

Festival of Fantasy Parade: 3pm, Main Street Electrical Parade: 8pm and 10pm, Wishes Fireworks: 9pm

It’s the busiest day of the week at Animal Kingdom. The morning Extra Magic Hour will attract the bulk of the Disney resort crowd and there’s no evening Extra Magic Hours or special evening entertainment going on at the other Parks, which will cause a lot of off-site guests to visit as well. With both yesterday and tomorrow recommended, there’s no reason to visit today. However, if you are Extra Magic Hours eligible and able to arrive by 7:30am, you can have a tremendous amount of success from 8am – 10am. But the afternoon is going to be busier than any other day this week.

Epcot is the most recommended Park. We’re coming off a popular morning Extra Magic Hour yesterday and most Disney resort guests will be waiting to either return or visit for their first time this Friday. Disney resort guests are more likely to head to Animal Kingdom and Magic Kingdom will be attracting crowds with the later hours of operation and both nighttime spectaculars. As always, follow my broken-record advice – arrive by 8:15am and head straight to Test Track, Sum of All Thrills, Mission: Space, and Soarin’. You may also want to take a more compartmentalized two-day approach, which gives you the benefit of enjoying the lowest possible crowds in both Future World and World Showcase each day. Plan to use FastPass+ at Soarin’ or Test Track later in the day when waits are longer. The single rider line at Test Track often has an actual wait shorter than standby or FastPass+, so consider that as an option. You may also want to get in line for Soarin’ or Test Track right before Epcot closes to find shorter waits than the afternoon, but only if you’re willing to give up seeing IllumiNations. Mission: SPACE should have nominal waits before 11am or after 7pm and is a lower priority. If you’re planning just one day in Epcot, try to move up through the World Showcase right at 11am. These are the only two attractions in World Showcase that will see wait times. Return to Future World after 5pm to visit any attractions that you skipped in the morning. Keep in mind that some Future World attractions close at 7pm. Expect Ellen’s Energy Adventure, Journey into Imagination with Figment, Captain EO, Living with the Land, Circle of Life, and both Innoventions buildings to accept their last guests of the day at 7pm. Overall, it’s a good day to visit Epcot and a fine day to stay for dinner and IllumiNations, provided you tour efficiently in the morning.

Hollywood Studios is recommended as we come off of a busier day with Fantasmic scheduled. Tomorrow is still a considerably better day to visit if you’re looking for the lowest crowds of the week, but the close is 4pm. Today is a better day to see the Osborne Lights and have dinner inside the Park along with nominal crowds and waits.

Magic Kingdom is tentatively recommended, though this will be the third busiest day of the week there with the longer hours of operation and nighttime entertainment luring more casual vacationers in the middle of the week than usual. With no Electrical Parade scheduled until Saturday, today will be more popular than either of the next two days. Anyone who wants to see Main Street Electrical Parade and doesn’t have Park Hopper (and many that do) will have to spend most of their day at the Magic Kingdom in order to see the Parade at night. While the Magic Kingdom may be busier than other days this week, many people do want to see the Parade and Wishes Fireworks show and this is your best opportunity to do both. Ideally, you would Park Hop over to Magic Kingdom in the late afternoon or early evening, after spending the majority of your day at a Park that’s recommended higher. This way, you can enjoy short lines and low crowds and still see the Magic Kingdom’s nighttime spectaculars. Without Park Hopper, you’ll want to arrive prior to 9am and head straight for the priorities on your itinerary. The 9am to 11am timeframe is always the best time to tour, regardless of overall crowd level or what day you visit. You’ll be able to get a lot done in those first two or three hours, but crowds will begin to build around 11am and will continue to be moderately heavy through Wishes. Plan to move on to some of the less popular attractions in the afternoon and/or take a lengthy afternoon break when crowds are at their highest. You can then return to the Magic Kingdom around 6pm for dinner, Main Street Electrical Parade, and Wishes. This is always the second best plan of attack (second to only the evening Park Hop) when you’re trying to see evening shows that aren’t scheduled often enough. Overall, Magic Kingdom is recommended if you tour during the recommended times and make efficient use of the morning and FastPass+ in the afternoon when waits peak. It will be more crowded in the afternoon than several other days this week. You’ll want to visit on a Mickey’s Party date if all you care about is low crowds. For the Main Street Electrical Parade, I recommend staking out a spot along the Parade route in Frontierland or Liberty Square for the second Parade. Both areas are significantly less crowded than Main Street and offer a similar view and the later Parade is less crowded because so many families leave immediately after Wishes, if they even make it that far.

Thursday November 20

Animal Kingdom: 9am – 5pm (Not Recommended)

Epcot: 9am – 9pm (Not Recommended)

Illuminations: 9pm

Hollywood Studios: 8am – 4pm (Most Recommended)

Fantasmic: none

Magic Kingdom: 9am –7pm (Tentatively Recommended)

Morning Extra Magic Hour: 8am – 9am

Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party

Festival of Fantasy Parade: 3pm, Main Street Electrical Parade: none, Wishes Fireworks: none

Animal Kingdom is not expressly recommended, though it won’t be a terrible day there. We have few people headed to Magic Kingdom with the short hours of operation and Hollywood Studios will be less popular than usual with the early close and lack of Fantasmic. The morning Extra Magic Hour at Magic Kingdom won’t draw nearly the same number of people as usual with the short hours of operation and lack of evening entertainment during regular Park hours. We also don’t have evening Extra Magic Hours scheduled anywhere. You can still do well by arriving prior to Park opening and taking care of the main priorities first thing in the morning, but it will be busier than the many recommended days during the week. Most people will want to take advantage of the better days at Hollywood Studios or Magic Kingdom.

Epcot is not expressly recommended with few people headed to Magic Kingdom with the early close and Hollywood Studios being unattractive to virtually every casual vacationer with the short hours of operation and lack of Fantasmic. With nothing specific drawing people towards Epcot, it won’t be wildly crowded, but it will be busier than recommended days during the week. Visit if Epcot fits into your overall itinerary better and you’re able to arrive by 8:15am to tour efficiently in the morning or have an afternoon arrival based around using FastPass+ at the priority attractions.

Hollywood Studios is the most recommended Park. It will be less crowded than other days this week with the earlier close and lack of Fantasmic turning most casual vacationers off. To have the most success, arrive by 7:25am and head directly to Toy Story Mania, and then Rock ‘N’ Roller Coaster, and Tower of Terror. Do this, and you’ll be in great shape for the rest of the day. Don’t arrive until 10am and you’ll end up with a 60+ minute waits at Toy Story Mania, Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster, and potentially Tower of Terror. After getting through the headliners, focus on the Studios’ stage shows and high capacity attractions like Muppet Vision and Star Tours. Popular characters like Woody/Buzz and Sofia the First may also be a morning priority. After 4pm, you could bus or boat over to nearby Epcot or plan a meal and a look around a resort.

Magic Kingdom is tentatively recommended today, which is rare for a day with a morning Extra Magic Hour attached. However, the 9am to 7pm operating schedule and Mickey’s Christmas Party in the evening make the Magic Kingdom significantly less crowded. While the Extra Magic Hours schedule is a major deciding factor for Disney resort guests because many of them feel like it’s Disney’s way of dictating where they belong each day, the short hours will be a bigger turn off. Over the past several years, Thursdays with a morning Extra Magic Hour and a 7pm close have not been much busier than other Mickey’s Party dates over the course of the week. Days with longer hours of operation and nighttime entertainment remain much more popular. In other words, the morning Extra Magic Hour will attract some Disney resort guests, but the short hours of operation will cause many of them to head elsewhere. Off-site visitors are much more likely to visit on a day with longer operating hours and both nighttime spectaculars. If you are Extra Magic Hours eligible, you can have a huge amount of success if you arrive by 7:40am and head straight for Fantasyland or other priorities. You should have no trouble riding all Fantasyland attractions in the first hour and you can move to the headlining Mountain rides or popular characters after that. If you aren’t Extra Magic Hours eligible or don’t arrive until after 9am, head straight for Fantasyland or Tomorrowland where you should find short standby waits at most attractions. Tomorrow will be slightly less crowded overall. If you’re not Extra Magic Hours eligible or don’t plan to arrive until after 9am, then Friday would be the better choice.

Friday November 21

Animal Kingdom: 8am – 5pm (Recommended)

Epcot: 9am – 9pm (Not Recommended)

Evening Extra Magic Hours: 9pm – 11pm

Illuminations: 9pm

Hollywood Studios: 9am – 8pm (Recommended)

Fantasmic: None

Magic Kingdom: 8am – 7pm (Most Recommended)

Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party

Festival of Fantasy Parade: 3pm, Main Street Electrical Parade: none, Wishes Fireworks: none

Animal Kingdom comes recommended. Epcot will be more popular with Disney resort guests with evening Extra Magic Hours. Arrive by 7:30am and take care of Kilimanjaro Safaris and Expedition Everest first thing and you’re set for the rest of the day.

We’ll want to avoid Epcot. Its evening Extra Magic Hours will lure the majority of Disney resort guests, which will lengthen waits times at the attractions for the entire afternoon and evening. Epcot is almost always at its busiest and lines are the longest when it has evening Extra Magic Hours. This is due to the fact that many Disney resort guests head to whichever Park has Extra Magic Hours, even if they don’t plan to take advantage of them. Without Park Hopper, Disney resort guests must stay in the Park with Extra Magic Hours for the entire day. The increased crowds lead to longer lines, heavier congestion in common areas, and an overall less pleasant touring experience. I would urge you to visit a different Park. If you want to head to Epcot today, despite my strong objections, your best chance to ride the headlining rides is from 9am-11am. Most Disney resort guests will sleep in and arrive around lunch in anticipation of staying until 10-11pm. The morning will be a decent time to tour Epcot, but you’ll probably want to Park Hop elsewhere after lunch or you’ll be stuck in significantly larger-than-usual crowds. You might also consider an afternoon break from 2pm-6pm when crowds will be at their largest. You could then return in the early evening for dinner and Extra Magic Hours. Alternatively, you could also Park Hop over in the evening for Extra Magic Hours, provided you’re aware of how busy it will be. With Extra Magic Hours only being two hours now, wait times at Soarin’ and Test Track won’t ease much until after 10:30pm. However, other attractions will see nominal waits and it’s a great time to take in Epcot’s natural ambiance and hit a few of the less popular/high capacity attractions. Skip Illuminations if you’ll be here on another night because it will be more crowded than usual. Overall, there’s no reason to visit Epcot today because crowds will be higher than any other day during the week and waits at Soarin’ and Test Track will be just as long as they were during the day until at least 10:30pm.

Hollywood Studios is recommended. Tomorrow’s morning Extra Magic Hour and Fantasmic will prove more popular and today is a great opportunity to take in the Osborne Lights, which won’t be turned on yesterday.

Magic Kingdom is our best choice as far as crowds are concerned. This may seem like an odd statement, considering that the operating hours are just 8am to 7pm, but that’s precisely why crowds will be so low. The great majority of Disney vacationers would prefer to visit the Parks when the hours are longer because it seems like more time in the Parks equates to higher value for your money. That seems logical considering the cost to enter the Parks is the same, regardless if Magic Kingdom is open from 8am to 1am or 8am to 7pm. However, crowds are so much lower on Mickey’s Christmas Party days that you’ll actually be able to get more done in a shorter amount of time. Most off-site vacationers will hold off until tomorrow for the longer hours, Main Street Electrical Parade, and Wishes and a lot of Disney resort guests will have visited yesterday for the morning Extra Magic Hour and the Electrical Parade. All of this leaves us with ample opportunity to get on the headlining and Fantasyland rides with minimal waits. As always, you’ll find the most success if you arrive prior to opening and head straight for Space/Big Thunder/Splash Mountains or Fantasyland. Use FastPass+ in the afternoon when wait times peak and you should be able to do just about every major ride and many of the secondary attractions as well. If you would also like to see the Main Street Electrical Parade and Wishes, consider spending a second day at the Magic Kingdom when those nighttime spectaculars are scheduled. Ideally, you would Park Hop over to the Magic Kingdom in the afternoon or evening after spending the majority of your day at a Park with lower crowds. Either way, focus on getting the most popular attractions out of the way today and return to the Magic Kingdom for the nighttime spectaculars on another date. With only one day to spend at the Magic Kingdom, you’ll need to decide whether seeing Wishes and the Main Street Electrical Parade are worth spending the day in heavier crowds.

Saturday November 22

Animal Kingdom: 8am – 7pm (Recommended)

Epcot: 9am – 9pm (Most Recommended)

Illuminations: 9pm

Hollywood Studios: 9am – 8pm (Not Recommended)

Morning Extra Magic Hour: 8am – 9am

Fantasmic: 6:30pm and 8pm

Magic Kingdom: 8am – 12am (Not Recommended)

Evening Extra Magic Hours: 12am – 2am

Festival of Fantasy Parade: 3pm, Main Street Electrical Parade: 9pm and 11pm, Wishes Fireworks: 10pm

Animal Kingdom is recommended. We don’t have Extra Magic Hours, special events, evening entertainment, or anything else to attract on-site or off-site visitors. Those leaving tomorrow after a traditional weeklong vacation are unlikely to visit Animal Kingdom on their last full day and most arriving today won’t head out to Animal Kingdom as their first destination. Tomorrow will be busier with the morning Extra Magic Hour pulling some resort guests. As always, you’ll be best off if you arrive prior to Park opening and head straight for Kilimanjaro Safaris and Expedition Everest. Wait times will only get shorter after 3pm, so stay through close if you have more you’d like to accomplish.

Epcot is the most recommended Park as we come off of a much busier day yesterday with evening Extra Magic Hours attracting the bulk of the Disney resort crowd. Magic Kingdom and Hollywood Studios will be attracting the majority of off-site and on-site visitors with long hours and plentiful evening entertainment. Take full advantage by arriving prior to Park opening and head straight to Test Track, followed by Sum of All Thrills, Mission: Space, and Soarin’. If Character Spot is a priority, visit after 7pm when waits will be shorter than the afternoon and you won’t have to waste precious morning time. It’s also an excellent day to stay for IllumiNations and enjoy the World Showcase in the afternoon because a lot of people will have their eyes on the Electrical Parade and Fantasmic.

Hollywood Studios is not recommended. The sizable Disney resort contingent numbers 75,000+ people. Because Disney sells the Extra Magic Hour program so well in its marketing materials, many of these Disney resort guests follow the Extra Magic Hours schedule because they think it’s Disney telling them where they belong each day. While you can have success if you are Extra Magic Hours eligible and arrive by 7:15am, most people will want to visit another day. Avoid it unless you can’t visit any other day or are certain you’ll arrive by 7:15am and plan to hit Toy Story Midway Mania, Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster, Tower of Terror, and Star Tours first thing in the morning. This past Thursday was the best day of the week to visit.

Saturdays are naturally the busiest day of the week at the Magic Kingdom. We have longer hours of operation, visiting locals, and a lot of vacationers who will be visiting the Magic Kingdom for a second time before returning home tomorrow. On top of that, Disney added evening Extra Magic Hours, attracting even more resort guests. On top of that, Main Street Electrical Parade is only scheduled on a limited number of nights this week. Because the Parade is so popular, a lot of people will visit on a day that they can see it, like today. Yesterday will be much less crowded with the 7pm close and lack of nighttime entertainment. You can have a moderate amount of success today if you arrive prior to 7:30am and head straight for the headlining or Fantasyland attractions. You may elect to prioritize another low capacity attraction or character instead. The afternoon will be busier than any other day this week and you’ll either want to take a break and return for the Electrical Parade and Wishes or visit the less popular attractions from 2pm – 6pm. The relatively late night is also a good time to tour with short waits at most attractions after 10pm. If you’re planning to visit during evening Extra Magic Hours, begin in Adventureland or Frontierland because most people will head straight for Tomorrowland or Fantasyland. Visit Tomorrowland or Fantasyland in the final hour to find shorter waits. While it is possible to have a decent day here if you arrive early and tour efficiently, there are much less crowded days to visit during the week.

Sunday November 23

Animal Kingdom: 8am – 8pm (Tentatively Recommended)

Morning Extra Magic Hour: 7am – 8am

Epcot: 9am – 9pm (Recommended)

Illuminations: 9pm

Hollywood Studios: 9am – 8pm (Most Recommended)

Fantasmic: 6:30pm and 8pm

Magic Kingdom: 8am – 12am (Highly Recommended)

Celebrate a Dream Come True Parade: 3pm, Main Street Electrical Parade: 9pm and 11pm, Wishes Fireworks: 10pm

Animal Kingdom is tentatively recommended now that it’s hosting a morning Extra Magic Hour. If you are Extra Magic Hours eligible, you can have a tremendous amount of success if you arrive by 6:30am and tour efficiently. You’ll find short waits nearly everywhere through 9:30am and be able to attend the first  and least crowded Festival of the Lion King or Finding Nemo show after moving through the priority attractions like Kilimanjaro Safaris, Expedition Everest, Adventurer’s Outpost Mickey and Minnie Meet, Primeval Whirl, and DINOSAUR. If you’re not eligible for Extra Magic Hours or plan to arrive after 8am, tomorrow and Tuesday would be easier touring experiences because you won’t have to contend with people already inside the Park before you’re even allowed to enter. Wait times decrease beginning around 3pm and the final two hours of the day see short waits. Visit DinoLand after 6pm and Asia after 7pm to find lower waits than the afternoon.

Epcot is also recommended. We have a lot going on at the other Parks and nothing specific to draw crowds to Epcot. It’s a particularly excellent day to see IllumiNations and have dinner in the World Showcase because both Hollywood Studios and Magic Kingdom offer popular evening entertainment. Despite the strong recommendation, you will still have the most success if you arrive prior to opening and head straight to Test Track, Sum of All Thrills, Mission: Space, and Soarin’ or follow a more compartmentalized two day touring plan. With the crowd level well above average, Epcot won’t be empty, despite the high recommendation and you’ll still want to arrive early and tour efficiently. If Future World seems to be getting crowded by 11am, move up through the World Showcase as soon as it opens. If you have more to accomplish in Future World, return after 5pm to visit any non-headlining attractions. Most people will have moved up through World Showcase by this time, decreasing crowds and waits. If you’d like to ride Soarin or Test Track again in the afternoon or evening, plan to rely on FastPass+. Check your Times Guide to see which Future World attractions remain open past 7pm – it’s usually only Spaceship Earth, Mission: Space, Test Track, Soarin’, Character Spot, and The Seas.

Hollywood Studios is the most recommended Park. Monday’s evening Extra Magic Hours will be more popular with the predictable Disney resort guests and we’re coming off a busier day yesterday with the morning Extra Magic Hour. Finally, Sunday is a popular travel day and few people arriving will head out to the Studios for Fantasmic this evening. Those that arrived yesterday are also unlikely to begin their first full day at Hollywood Studios. In order to find the shortest waits, you’ll need to arrive by 8:15am and head straight to Toy Story Mania. Because of its popularity and extremely limited capacity, Toy Story Mania almost always has afternoon waits of 60 or more minutes, even when crowds are relatively low and the Studios is recommended. When crowds are well above average, as they are today, afternoon waits will hit 90 to 120 minutes. There’s no way around that with its limited capacity and the even more limited number of things to do with kids. It’s always your top priority. The second attraction with the longest peak wait is Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster, which should be ridden immediately after Toy Story Mania in the morning or with FastPass+. Other priorities are Tower of Terror, Great Movie Ride, and Star Tours, though FastPass+ are more plentiful at both attractions and standby waits are usually lower. After you get through these four headliners, it’s just a matter of arriving in time to see the various stage shows that run on a set schedule and getting over to the Studios’ high capacity attractions. See the later Fantasmic because it will be less crowded. You may also have characters to visit before lines get longer. While it’s officially a recommended day, arriving prior to Park opening and hitting the headliners first thing is more important than which day you pick. Arrive at 11am, no matter the recommendation or the overall crowd level, and you’ll be looking at long lines at Toy Story Mania and Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster. If you have other plans today, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday are recommended.

Magic Kingdom is highly recommended as we look at a very busy week for the Thanksgiving holiday. Yesterday will be busier with evening Extra Magic Hours and tomorrow will be busier as a lot of guests arrive and head out to Magic Kingdom on their first full day. The morning is a particularly excellent time to tour. You’ll have the most success if you arrive by 7:30am and tour efficiently in the morning followed by intelligent FastPass+ usage in the afternoon. The late night is also a good time to tour. Visit Tomorrowland after 10pm and Fantasyland after 11pm to find much shorter waits than the afternoon.

Monday November 24

Animal Kingdom: 8am – 8pm (Highly Recommended)

Epcot: 9am – 9pm (Most Recommended)

Illuminations: 9pm

Hollywood Studios: 9am – 10pm (Not Recommended)

Evening Extra Magic Hours: 10pm – 12am

Fantasmic: 6:30pm and 8pm

Magic Kingdom: 8am – 1am (Not Recommended)

Celebrate a Dream Come True Parade: 3pm, Main Street Electrical Parade: 9pm and 11pm, Wishes Fireworks: 10pm

Animal Kingdom is highly recommended. Hollywood Studios will be attracting the resort guest crowd and it’s early enough in the week that few people will be visiting Disney’s least favorite theme park this early in their vacation. We’re also coming off a morning Extra Magic Hour yesterday that will be more attractive to resort guests. Tour very early or very late to have the most success.

Epcot is the most recommended Park. We don’t have Extra Magic Hours, special evening entertainment, or anything else that will draw people toward Epcot specifically. Disney resort guests will be more likely to visit tomorrow or Friday for Extra Magic Hours and off-site visitors on a weeklong vacation will be headed to the Magic Kingdom for their first full day at the world’s most popular theme park. Disney resort guests are more likely to head to Hollywood Studios for the Extra Magic Hour. Still, it will be crowded with the above average overall crowd level. To have the most success, arrive prior to Park opening and head to Test Track, Sum of All Thrills, Mission: Space, and Soarin’ or follow one of the two-day compartmentalized touring plans. You’ll also be in the best shape if you’ve moved on to World Showcase by 12pm. Should you have more to accomplish in Future World, return after 5pm when most of the crowd has moved on to World Showcase. Just keep in mind that a lot of the Future World attractions close at 7pm. Usually, just Soarin, Test Track, Mission: Space, Spaceship Earth, The Seas with Nemo and Friends, and Character Spot continue to operate after 7pm. If Character Spot is on your itinerary, try to visit after 7pm when waits times are much lower than the afternoon. Overall, it’s a great day for Epcot and an excellent opportunity to spend time in both Future World and World Showcase.

Hollywood Studios will be busy due to the evening Extra Magic Hours that are popular with Disney resort guests and Fantasmic that will keep crowds heavy all day. The morning will be an okay time to tour, but crowds will increase substantially around 11am as more and more Disney resort guests arrive. I’m looking towards Tuesday or Thursday as better days to visit and yesterday was also highly recommended. Because of that, there’s really no reason to head in that direction today. Plus, there are only a few attractions open during evening Extra Magic Hours and the waits for Toy Story Mania, Rock ‘N’ Roller Coaster, Tower of Terror, and Star Tours will likely be just as long as they were during the day, at least until after 11pm when people begin to give up and exit. Remember, the Hollywood Hills Theater where Fantasmic is shown is located right on Hollywood Boulevard, across from Rock ‘N’ Roller Coaster and Tower of Terror. There are going to be 9,000+ people, most of them Disney resort guests, funneling out of the theater to these two attractions and Toy Story Mania at 7pm and again at 8:30pm. If you’re staying for evening Extra Magic Hours, your best bet is always to save these headlining attractions for the very end of the night and visit Toy Story Mania last. You can have a moderate amount of success if you arrive early and get out by 1pm or 2pm, but it’s going to be busy from 11am through 10:30pm and you’re in trouble if you don’t arrive until 10:30am or later.

It’s going to be an extremely busy day at Magic Kingdom today, despite the lack of Extra Magic Hours and the fact that we have Main Street Electrical Parade and Wishes scheduled every night this week. The problem is that a lot of people travel over the weekend and naturally head to Magic Kingdom on their first full day, regardless of what’s going on at the other Parks. That’s partially why Disney usually schedules Extra Magic Hours at Animal Kingdom and Hollywood Studios on Mondays. It’s an effort to pull people away from where they would naturally go. It does help, but not enough that Magic Kingdom won’t be incredibly busy, especially with the high overall crowd level for Thanksgiving Week. If possible, try to put the Magic Kingdom off until tomorrow. If you do end up going to the Magic Kingdom today, you can have success if you arrive by 7:15am and head straight for Fantasyland and the headlining Mountain rides, but you’ll want to move on to the less popular attractions by 11am and make use of FastPass+ in the late morning and afternoon. Consider taking a break in the afternoon and returning in the evening for the nighttime Parade, Wishes, and some late night rides. Plan to catch the 11pm Electrical Parade in Frontierland or Liberty Square because both areas are much less crowded than Main Street and the second Parade is significantly less crowded than the first. The late night is also a great time to tour. Most families leave soon after Wishes, making the Park much less crowded and causing waits at the major Fantasyland attractions to be much shorter from 10pm through close. Plan to visit Tomorrowland after 11pm and Fantasyland after 12am to find the shortest waits in the evening.

Tuesday November 25

Animal Kingdom: 8am – 8pm (Most Recommended)

Epcot: 9am – 9pm (Not Recommended)

Morning Extra Magic Hour: 8am – 9am

Illuminations: 9pm

Hollywood Studios: 9am – 10pm (Recommended)

Fantasmic: 6:30pm and 8pm

Magic Kingdom: 8am – 12am (Recommended)

Celebrate a Dream Come True Parade: 3pm, Main Street Electrical Parade: 9pm and 11pm, Wishes Fireworks: 10pm

Animal Kingdom is our best Park to visit today. We have Fantasmic attracting a lot of off-site and on-site visitors, morning Extra Magic Hour at Epcot luring Disney resort guests, and the Magic Kingdom is a big draw in and of itself. To take full advantage of the relatively low crowd level, arrive prior to Park opening and head to Kilimanjaro Safaris and Expedition Everest first thing. After that, head to DinoLand USA for Primeval Whirl and DINOSAUR and you won’t have anything to worry about for the rest of the day. Use FastPass+ in the afternoon when waits will be longer. If possible see the first or last Finding Nemo and Lion King shows because they will be the least crowded. You may also want to prioritize characters that will have long afternoon waits. If you can’t get to Animal Kingdom early, stay through 8pm. A lot of people leave in the afternoon and the major attractions have much shorter lines in the last hour of operation. The 7pm-8pm hour will be a great time to return to Expedition Everest, Kali River Rapids, and others. Check your Times Guide to see when Kilimanjaro Safaris and the animal exhibits close – it may be earlier than the rest of the Park. After you complete your itinerary, you might consider Park Hopping over to Epcot for dinner and Illuminations, Hollywood Studios for Fantasmic, or Magic Kingdom for a few evening attractions, Main Street Electrical Parade, and Wishes. Without Park Hopper, consider transferring to the Animal Kingdom Lodge for dinner at one of their three excellent restaurants – Boma, Sanaa, or Jiko. The resort is amazing and there is a fun and free public observatory where you can look at the same private savannas that many guests are paying a premium to have right outside their rooms. Nighttime trips to Downtown Disney and the BoardWalk are also popular and both have great dining and shopping “opportunities.”  Because Animal Kingdom is recommended so highly on Thanksgiving, you may want to hit Magic Kingdom today and wait for Thursday for Animal Kingdom.

Epcot isn’t recommended due to the morning Extra Magic Hour that will attract Disney resort guests and the natural progression of weeklong Disney vacationers that will naturally head to Epcot after the Magic Kingdom yesterday. While the morning Extra Magic Hour will be an excellent time to tour, Epcot will get progressively busier as more and more Disney resort guests arrive. You could have success if you arrive at 7:15am, head straight for the headliners, and move up to the World Showcase around 11am, but afternoon crowds will be heavier than recommended days and you’ll likely want to Park Hop elsewhere or take a break around 2pm. A lot of Disney resort guests think that Disney dictates where they should go each day with the Extra Magic Hours schedule. Even though this isn’t true, it doesn’t stop thousands upon thousands of Disney resort guests from visiting the Extra Magic Hours Park, even though they have no intention of arriving in time to take advantage of their extra hour. Yesterday, tomorrow, and Saturday are the best days of the week to visit.

Hollywood Studios is recommended. Yesterday’s evening Extra Magic Hours/Fantasmic combo will be a bigger draw and the addition of Fantasmic to every day this week spreads crowds out more evenly. Because of that, your touring plan is more important than which day you decide to visit the Studios. Arrive by 8:15am, head directly to Toy Story Mania, and then visit Rock ‘N’ Roller Coaster and Tower of Terror. Do this, and you’ll be in great shape for the rest of the day. Don’t arrive until 10am and you’ll end up with a 75+ minute wait at Toy Story Mania and Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster. The other headliners will also be busy from 10am through 9pm. After getting through the headliners, focus on the Studios’ stage shows and high capacity attractions like Muppet Vision 3D and Great Movie Ride. Return to the major attractions after 9pm to find shorter waits than the afternoon, finishing with Toy Story Mania.

Magic Kingdom comes recommended today. A lot of people will have visited yesterday and they’ll be looking toward Thursday to return for Thanksgiving and the morning Extra Magic Hour. We have Fantasmic at Hollywood Studios and morning Extra Magic Hour at Disney World’s second most popular theme park to attract people away from the Magic Kingdom. Take advantage by arriving prior to Park opening and head straight for Fantasyland, the headlining Mountain rides, or whatever time-sensitive characters/attractions on your itinerary you deem most important. Despite the recommendation, you’ll still want to make efficient use of the morning, use FastPass+ efficiently, and take a lengthy afternoon break when crowds peak. We’re still in the midst of a very busy week and Magic Kingdom will be far from empty. Plan to see the 11pm Electrical Parade in Frontierland or Liberty Square because those areas are much less crowded and the later Parade is much less popular. Close the night out with popular rides in Fantasyland, ending the day by getting in line for Mine Train right before close. You will ride no matter what the posted wait says.

Wednesday November 26

Animal Kingdom: 8am – 8pm (Not Recommended)

Morning Extra Magic Hour: 7am – 8am

Epcot: 9am – 9pm (Highly Recommended)

Illuminations: 9pm

Hollywood Studios: 9am – 10pm (Not Recommended)

Fantasmic: 6:30pm and 8pm

Magic Kingdom: 8am – 12am (Most Recommended)

Celebrate a Dream Come True Parade: 3pm, Main Street Electrical Parade: 9pm and 11pm, Wishes Fireworks: 10pm

It’s the busiest day of the week at Animal Kingdom. The morning Extra Magic Hour will attract the bulk of the Disney resort crowd and there’s no evening Extra Magic Hours or special evening entertainment (since Main Street Electrical Parade and Fantasmic are scheduled every night this week) going on at the other Parks, which will cause a lot of off-site guests to visit as well. Most people prefer to visit the other Parks when they’re open longer, offer evening Extra Magic Hours, or have rare evening entertainment. When none of that is available, they’ll default to the Animal Kingdom. Plus, a lot of people will be headed to Magic Kingdom or Epcot tomorrow for Thanksgiving, which means they’ll be headed elsewhere today. With both yesterday and tomorrow recommended, there’s no reason to visit today unless you’re Extra Magic Hours eligible, absolutely certain that you’ll arrive by 6:40am, and plan to leave by noon.

It’s an above-average day at Epcot. Yesterday’s morning Extra Magic Hour will have been moderately attended by Disney resort guests and they won’t be looking to return today. We’ll also have a decent number planning to visit tomorrow for Thanksgiving. This past Monday and this coming Saturday are the best days to visit, though today is also recommended if it fits into your schedule better. If you do go, plan to arrive as early as possible and either follow a touring plan or head straight to Test Track, followed by Sum of All Thrills, Mission Space, and Soarin’ or follow a more compartmentalized two-day plan. You’ll be in good shape if you’ve moved to the World Showcase by 12pm. It’s a good day to see IllumiNations and have dinner in World Showcase, but it will still be busy with the high overall crowd level.

Hollywood Studios is not recommended. It won’t necessarily be far and away busier than other days this week, but it has a few things working against it. For one, we don’t have evening Extra Magic Hours scheduled anywhere and only a morning Extra Magic Hour at Disney World’s least popular theme park. Second, a lot of people will be heading to Magic Kingdom or Epcot tomorrow and they’ll naturally visit another Park today. While Animal Kingdom will be popular with Disney resort guests, we also need to be concerned about the sizable off-site contingent that would prefer to see Fantasmic and ride Toy Story Mania. All in all, the Studios will be busier than yesterday or tomorrow and you’ll want to visit on one of those days if you’re flexible with your itinerary. If you already have today selected, you can still have success if you arrive by 8:15am and take care of Toy Story Mania and Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster first thing, but it’s going to be crowded in the late morning through close.

Magic Kingdom is the most recommended Park, even though it will be far from empty with the high overall crowd level. Tomorrow will be much busier for the Extra Magic Hour and the fact that people naturally visit Magic Kingdom on major holidays. This week, smart touring trumps picking the “right” Park to visit. You’ll want to arrive prior to Park opening, head straight for the priorities on your list, and rely on FastPass+ at the major attractions in the afternoon. Most people will want to start with the Fantasyland priorities, Space Mountain or something in Tomorrowland, or a priority character. If you do that and visit on a recommended day, you’ll find shorter lines and easier touring than you would in any other scenario. If you arrive around noon and want to ride Space Mountain in the standby line, you’re going to run into long waits no matter which day you visit this week. There’s simply no way around that when the overall crowd level is so high. I also recommend taking an afternoon break back at your resort to relax, enjoy each other’s company, and hop in the pools (weather permitting). Return in the evening for dinner, some late night attractions, to enjoy Wishes, and see the 11pm Main Street Electrical Parade in Frontierland or Liberty Square. Many families leave soon after the first Parade and Wishes and lines in Fantasyland will be much shorter than they were in the afternoon. If you couldn’t get to Fantasyland (or other popular attractions) in the early morning, plan to stick around to close, visiting Tomorrowland after 10pm and Fantasyland after 11pm, particularly if you’re happy to skip the nighttime spectaculars. Remember that Disney will let you get in line and ride any attraction so long as you enter the queue by the stated close. Consider getting in line for Mine Train around 11:55pm if you’d like to experience it with a shorter wait in standby than any other time outside of absolute first thing in the morning.

Thursday November 27

Animal Kingdom: 8am – 8pm (Most Recommended)

Epcot: 9am – 9pm (Not Recommended)

Illuminations: 9pm

Hollywood Studios: 9am – 10pm (Recommended)

Fantasmic: 6:30pm and 8pm

Magic Kingdom: 8am – 12am (Not Recommended)

Morning Extra Magic Hour: 7am – 8am

Celebrate a Dream Come True Parade: 3pm, Main Street Electrical Parade: 9pm and 11pm, Wishes Fireworks: 10pm

Animal Kingdom is the most recommended Park today. Animal Kingdom is always the least crowded Park (both literally and relatively) on major holidays like Thanksgiving, Easter, and Christmas. It doesn’t exactly “feel” festive and most people naturally would prefer to visit the “most magical place on earth.”  Others will have heard how well Epcot handles large crowds and they’ll head in that direction instead. All in all, few people will be considering Animal Kingdom and it is by far your best choice as far as crowds are concerned. Take advantage by arriving prior to Park opening and heading straight for Kilimanjaro Safaris and Expedition Everest (or follow a touring plan). You should have no problem riding both multiple times during the day, especially with the help of FastPass+ in the late morning and afternoon. If you don’t arrive early in the morning, use FastPass+ and/or head to the headliners you missed or would like to ride again after 6:30pm. A lot of people leave in the afternoon, which lowers waits at just about every attraction until close. After you complete your itinerary, I would recommend heading to a resort for dinner rather than trying to Park Hop elsewhere. You could theoretically head to Hollywood Studios for Fantasmic, Epcot for dinner and IllumiNations, or Magic Kingdom for Main Street Electrical Parade, Wishes, and some late night rides, but all three Parks will be very crowded in the late afternoon and evening. It would be more relaxing to transfer to a nearby resort for dinner. You might consider heading to Animal Kingdom Lodge for dinner at one of their three excellent restaurants – Sanaa, Jiko, and Boma. Mara, the resort’s quick service, is also well above average and a cheaper alternative. There’s also plenty to see and do at the Animal Kingdom Lodge, including a visit to the amazing public observatory where you can look out at the same private savannas that guests of the resort are paying $300+ a night to enjoy from their balconies. You can also book a reservation at one of Animal Kingdom’s table service restaurants right up until 8pm. Disney will run buses for at least 90 minutes after close, making it easy to return to your resort or another destination should you stay for a late dinner.

Epcot will be busy today, despite the fact that there’s nothing special going on. Casual Disney advice is to head to Epcot on holidays because it handles crowds better than the other Parks. While it’s true that there is physically more space in Epcot to stand than the other Parks, there are really only two major headlining attractions and a few upper-tier attractions in Epcot. Because of this, the lines at Soarin’ and Test Track will be extremely long (120+ minutes most of the day) and other attractions that are usually empty will see significant waits. Imagine a 40 minute wait for Journey into Imagination and 60 minutes for The Seas with Nemo and Friends. Because of the limited number of attractions, you’ll also see a ton of people milling about Future World and World Showcase. While you could have success if you arrive by 8:15am and head straight to Soarin’ or Test Track, there are much less crowded days available.

Hollywood Studios is recommended today because of the popularity of Magic Kingdom and Epcot. The addition of Fantasmic to every night this week also makes tonight’s show significantly less attractive because there are so many opportunities to visit. People won’t visit the Studios in order to see Fantasmic, but will default to it when they aren’t interested in visiting Epcot or Magic Kingdom. Animal Kingdom remains the best choice, but Hollywood Studios is not a bad choice if you have other plans for the animals. As always, you’ll have the most success if you arrive by 8:15am and head straight for Toy Story Mania, Rock ‘N’ Roller Coaster, and Tower of Terror. You’re in good shape after you get through these four rides because most of the Studios’ other attractions are high capacity stage shows and rides. Like any other day when crowds are this heavy, you’ll run into lines and waits if you don’t arrive until after 10am. You can still have success if you use FastPass+ and visit the less popular attractions in the afternoon, but the standby waits are going to be long, despite the recommendation. There’s just no way around that on a major holiday. If you’re planning to see Fantasmic, you’ll want to consider the Fantasmic Dining Package that will guarantee everyone on the reservation a seat in the reserved section of the theater if you’re planning to see the 6:30pm show. If you’re not interested in the Fantasmic Dining Package or it isn’t available, wait for the second show because it will require a shorter wait. Still, plan to arrive 30 minutes early for the second show to secure good seats together. For the first show, you’ll want to arrive 30 minutes early with the Package or 60+ minutes without it. Finally, consider taking a break in the afternoon from 1pm – 5pm when crowds are at their highest and return around 5pm for dinner, some late night attractions, the Osborne Lights, and Fantasmic. Return to the headliners after 9pm when waits decrease, finishing the day with Toy Story Mania.

Like most major holidays, Magic Kingdom will be extremely crowded today. Unless you plan to arrive prior to Park opening for some early rides or merely want to visit for the ambiance, Magic Kingdom will be expressly not recommended. This will be one of the busiest days of the year and we obviously don’t want to be caught in crowds of that magnitude. Like any day this week, you can have success if you arrive prior to opening and head straight for Fantasyland or other priorities, but crowds will be heavy from 11am through 11pm. Tomorrow will be much less crowded and I would highly recommend holding off until then.

Friday November 28

Animal Kingdom: 8am – 8pm (Highly Recommended)

Epcot: 9am – 9:30pm (Not Recommended)

Evening Extra Magic Hours: 9:30pm – 11:30pm

Illuminations: 9:30pm

Hollywood Studios: 9am – 10pm (Recommended)

Fantasmic: 6:30pm and 8pm

Magic Kingdom: 8am – 12am (Most Recommended)

Celebrate a Dream Come True Parade: 3pm, Main Street Electrical Parade: 9pm and 11pm, Wishes Fireworks: 10pm

It’s another excellent day at the Animal Kingdom. If you haven’t yet made it, today is your day. While we are sometimes apprehensive about visiting this late in the week, people will be much more likely to be headed to Epcot for the Candlelight Processional, evening Extra Magic Hours, and Holiday IllumiNations or Hollywood Studios for Fantasmic and Osborne Lights. To take full advantage, arrive prior to Park opening and head straight to Kilimanjaro Safaris and Expedition Everest. Get those two attractions out of the way early and head over to DinoLand USA for Primeval Whirl and DINOSAUR. After that, you’ll be in excellent shape to get over to the first Festival of the Lion King and Finding Nemo the Musical shows of the morning. These are always the least crowded shows of the day. You may want to prioritize characters that have long afternoon waits as well. Use FastPass+ in the late morning and afternoon should have no trouble experiencing just about everything Animal Kingdom has to offer in just one day. Finally, keep in mind that crowds disperse in the afternoon and it’s usually a great time to return to the major attractions from 6pm through close. Check your Times Guide to see if Kilimanjaro Safaris will close down before the rest of the Park. It often does in November, depending on sunlight and the weather.

The morning from 9am to 11am will be fine at Epcot, but it will begin to get more and more crowded as it gets later in the day. The evening Extra Magic Hours will cause a lot of Disney resort guests to sleep in, especially if they were battling the crowds at the Magic Kingdom all day yesterday. Nonetheless, they will begin showing up around 10am and more and more of them will trickle in throughout the late morning and early afternoon. Epcot will be extremely busy tonight because of the Extra Magic Hours and the first night of the popular Candlelight Processional show. Epcot will be significantly less crowded tomorrow and I would strongly recommend waiting until then to visit. If for some reason you must visit Epcot today, you will want to arrive by 8:15am and head straight to Soarin’ or Test Track after Epcot opens. In order to stay ahead of the incoming crowds, you’ll want to move on to the World Showcase when it opens at 11am. See the touring plans section for additional tips. For evening Extra Magic Hours, expect waits at Soarin’ and Test Track to be just as long as they were in the afternoon, up until at least 10pm. Many of the other attractions will be much less busy, but evening Extra Magic Hours are not a good time to visit the major headliners. Occupy your time with Captain EO, Finding Nemo, American Adventure, and others until 11pm when lines at Soarin’ and Test Track should ease. Just to reiterate, Epcot will be more crowded today after 11am than any day this week other than potentially Thanksgiving day. Avoid it if you can schedule it on any other day.

Hollywood Studios is recommended today, though yesterday would have been better. Epcot’s evening Extra Magic Hours will be a big draw and Magic Kingdom will continue to attract crowds, even if it will be better there than it has been over the last few days. Most people will want to take advantage of the lower crowds yesterday or plan to wait until next Monday, but today also works. Even with the recommendation, you’ll still have the most success if you arrive prior to Park opening and head straight for Toy Story Mania, Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster, and Tower of Terror. After you get through those attractions, it’s just a matter of hitting the various stage shows that run on a set schedule, getting to the character meet and greets, and visiting the other high capacity attractions. For Fantasmic, I always recommend the Fantasmic Dining Package, which guarantees everyone on the reservation a seat in the reserved section of the Fantasmic theater if you’re planning to see the 6:30pm show. While it still requires you to arrive at least 30 minutes early, it’s better than the 60+ minutes you’re looking at without the Package. On the Disney Dining Plan, you can book the Fantasmic Dining Package for one table service credit at Mama Melrose’s Ristorante Italiano or Hollywood & Vine and for two table service credits at Hollywood Brown Derby, which is the same cost as it would be otherwise. It also includes the appetizer, which is a nice bonus. Of you don’t want to Package or it’s no longer available, I highly recommend holding off for the second Fantasmic, which is always less popular. You’ll want to arrive 30 minutes early to secure decent seats together, but it’s more comfortable wait and the seats will ultimately be better. With a party of two adults, you may be able to sneak in right before the show begins and find good spots, but that’s more difficult with kids or larger parties. Finally, consider taking an afternoon break when crowds peak from 1pm to 5pm or so. Arriving early and touring efficiently is more important than picking the “right day.”  Plan to visit the Studios when you can do both.

If you haven’t been able to make it to the Magic Kingdom yet, today is a great day to do so. A lot of people will have visited yesterday and the long lines and giant crowds will cause them to look elsewhere for relief. Today is also Black Friday, one of the biggest shopping days of the year and many Florida locals will be out shopping rather than visiting the Parks. Despite the recommendation, Magic Kingdom will still be busy with the high overall crowd level. You’ll want to visit Fantasyland or the headlining Mountain rides first thing in the morning and use FastPass+ efficiently throughout the day. Plan to visit the less popular attractions in the afternoon. The 10pm – 12am timeframe is also an excellent opportunity to visit Tomorrowland, Fantasyland, or other popular attractions. Many families leave after the first Main Street Electrical Parade and Wishes, which lowers crowds in Fantasyland and the other lands late at night. If you couldn’t get to Mine Train, Peter Pan and Winnie the Pooh early in the morning, return after 11pm, ultimately getting in line for Mine Train a couple minutes before close. As usual, the second Main Street Electrical Parade will be less popular than the first. Plan to stake out a spot along the Parade route in Frontierland or Liberty Square at least 10 minutes before the Parade is scheduled to begin. Overall, Magic Kingdom is going to continue to be busy, but you can “beat” the crowds by arriving early and touring efficiently, using FastPass+ in the late morning and afternoon, taking an afternoon break when crowds peak, and returning in the evening for dinner, some additional rides, and the nighttime spectaculars.

Saturday November 29

Animal Kingdom: 9am – 8pm (Recommended)

Epcot: 9am – 9:30pm (Most Recommended)

Illuminations: 9:30pm

Hollywood Studios: 9am – 10

.

pm (Not Recommended)

Morning Extra Magic Hour: 8am – 9am

Fantasmic: 6:30pm and 8pm

Magic Kingdom: 8am – 12am (Not Recommended)

Evening Extra Magic Hours: 12am – 2am

Celebrate a Dream Come True Parade: 3pm, Main Street Electrical Parade: 9pm and 11pm, Wishes Fireworks: 10pm

Animal Kingdom comes recommended yet again, though visiting Epcot makes more sense in most situations. We don’t have Extra Magic Hours, special events, or longer hours of operation to attract Disney vacationers of any sort. Hollywood Studios will be popular with Disney resort guests and Magic Kingdom will continue to pull substantial crowds. To take full advantage of the low crowd level, arrive prior to Park opening and follow one of the Animal Kingdom touring plans. You’ll be able to get a ton done before 10am and be in a great position to get over to the first Festival of the Lion King and/or Finding Nemo Musical shows. Those shows do get popular in the afternoon, so seeing them in the early morning means you’ll have better seats and won’t have to show up as early. If you don’t arrive early, crowds will only dissipate in the evening. Visit DinoLand after 6pm and Asia after 7pm to find much lower waits than the afternoon.

Epcot is our best Park to visit. Last night’s evening Extra Magic Hours will have been wildly popular with Disney resort guests and they will be nowhere near Epcot today, especially in the morning. Take full advantage by arriving early and head straight to Test Track, Sum of All Thrills, Mission: Space, and Soarin’ or follow a more compartmentalized two-day touring plan. It’s also an excellent day to stay for IllumiNations and enjoy the World Showcase in the afternoon. World Showcase will be busier in the evening for the first weekend of the Candlelight Processional, but there’s no way around that this week. To have the most success, move up through World Showcase beginning around 11am. That will put you well ahead of the crowds until at least 3pm and you’ll be among the first people to enter each of the World Showcase Pavilions, until you make it to the American Adventure.

Hollywood Studios is not recommended. While the addition of Fantasmic to every night this week makes each show less appealing, it also makes today’s morning Extra Magic Hour more attractive to Disney resort guests because they’ll also have the opportunity to see Fantasmic and enjoy the same operating hours as most other days next week. Because most Disney resort guests will be arriving later in the morning, you can still have success if you are Extra Magic Hours eligible, arrive by 7:15am, and head straight to Toy Story Mania, Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster, and Tower of Terror. However, you’re in trouble if you arrive at 10am with everyone else. Make full use of the morning and you don’t necessarily need to change your plans, but it’s going to be busier than recommended days in the afternoon and you’ll likely want to take a sizeable afternoon break from 1pm to 5pm or so to rest up for Fantasmic, after arriving early in the morning. Luckily, Magic Kingdom will be attracting a lot of people and Epcot will be more popular with locals, so it won’t be a terrible day. Still, this coming Monday would be better.

It’s another busier than usual day at Magic Kingdom. Although we had long hours, Main Street Electrical Parade, and Wishes scheduled every day this week, we won’t next week. Plus, a lot of people who are visiting for Thanksgiving will be leaving tomorrow and they’ll want to head back to Magic Kingdom for one last go around. The evening Extra Magic Hours will only serve to attract more resort guests. The early morning from 8am – 10:30am and late night from 10pm – 2am will be great times to tour, but the afternoon from 11am – 9pm will be busier than most days over the last week and any day next week with the high overall crowd level.

Sunday November 30

Animal Kingdom: 9am – 7pm (Highly Recommended)

Epcot: 9am – 9:30pm (Recommended)

Illuminations: 9:30pm

Hollywood Studios: 9am – 8pm (Not Recommended)

Evening Extra Magic Hours: 8pm – 10pm

Fantasmic: 6:30pm

Magic Kingdom: 8am – 7pm (Most Recommended)

Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party

Festival of Fantasy Parade: 3pm, Main Street Electrical Parade: none, Wishes Fireworks: none

Animal Kingdom is recommended. Disney resort guests are more likely to visit Animal Kingdom tomorrow for morning Extra Magic Hour and it’s unlikely anyone arriving over the weekend will begin their vacation with Disney’s least popular theme park. You should be able to do just about everything the Park has to offer if you arrive prior to Park opening. Focus on riding Kilimanjaro Safaris and Expedition Everest as early as possible or use FastPass+. After getting those out of the way, move on to DinoLand USA or one of the more popular shows – either Finding Nemo the Musical or Festival of the Lion King and you’ll be set for the rest of the day. Keep in mind that crowds disperse in the afternoon and the last hour of operation will only have diminishing waits. End the day in Asia with Kali River Rapids and Expedition Everest and waits will be nearly nonexistent.

Epcot remains recommended with now below average overall crowd level and Hollywood Studios pulling resort guests. Most people will want to take advantage of lower crowds at Magic Kingdom and wait until Monday to visit when more is going on elsewhere. You can still do perfectly well by arriving prior to Park opening and heading straight for Soarin’ or Test Track. Use FastPass+ at the other and you’ll have taken care of the headliners in Future World. Move up through World Showcase as close to 11am as possible and you’re set for the day.

Hollywood Studios will be busy due to the evening Extra Magic Hours that are popular with Disney resort guests. The morning will be an okay time to tour, but crowds will increase around 11am as more and more Disney resort guests arrive. Unfortunately, I’m not too fond of evening Extra Magic Hours at Hollywood Studios. There are only a few attractions open and the waits for Toy Story Mania, Rock ‘N’ Roller Coaster, Tower of Terror, and Star Tours will likely be just as long as they were during the day, at least until 9pm when people begin to give up and exit. In addition, 9,000+ people will exit Fantasmic at 7pm, right as evening Extra Magic Hours gets underway. The Fantasmic Theater is located right on Sunset Boulevard, across from the entrances to Tower of Terror and Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster. While not everyone seeing Fantasmic will be a Disney resort guest, many of them will be, and a ton will be headed to Tower of Tower and Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster because they truly believe it’s the best time to get in line. Unfortunately, they’ll find themselves lined up with a few thousand of their new best friends. If you’re staying for evening Extra Magic Hours, your best bet is always to save these headlining attractions for the very end of the night and visit Toy Story Mania last. While you could theoretically have success if you arrive prior to Park opening and head straight for the headliners, the same will be true later in the week and you won’t have to deal with the significantly heavier afternoon and evening crowds.

Magic Kingdom is the most recommended Park. The short hours and lack of evening entertainment will cause a lot of casual vacationers to head elsewhere. We’re in between yesterday’s very popular longer hours of operation/both nighttime spectaculars and have a similar schedule tomorrow with evening Extra Magic Hours attached. On top of that, Sunday is a major travel day for those on a standard weeklong Disney vacation. With the early close, virtually none of them will start out with an abbreviated day at Magic Kingdom. Few people that arrived on Saturday will also visit a theme park with a seemingly short day and no nighttime spectaculars. Tomorrow will be significantly more crowded. If you’re looking to visit Magic Kingdom over two days, then you may want to visit on a Mickey’s Party date and another day where you can enjoy the nighttime spectaculars. If you’re planning just one day at Magic Kingdom, then you’ll need to weigh whether you’re willing to put up with heavier crowds in order to enjoy both nighttime spectaculars. While the 7pm close may seem like a truncated day, I can assure you that eleven hours is a long time to spend in a theme park. If you arrive by 7:40am, you’ll be able to accomplish an amazing number of attractions in a short period of time if you head straight for Fantasyland or other important attractions, use FastPass+ in the afternoon when crowds peak, and visit the less popular attractions in the afternoon. Crowds will only diminish from 4pm to 6pm as people leave for dining reservations and other activities. Around 6pm you will begin to see an influx of people arriving for the Christmas Party, but they tend to congregate on Main Street waiting for their Party to begin, rather than heading for the attractions. Stay through 7pm because wait times will only decrease from their afternoon highs as it gets closer to 7pm. One thing about staying through 7pm is that at exactly 7pm (and possibly a couple of minutes before), the special characters will begin appearing for the Party. If you’re not planning to do the Party and have kids, you may want to leave around 6:30pm. Otherwise, your children may encounter a bunch of characters that they won’t be allowed to visit because you must have a Party ticket to get in line. There are no exceptions. Other than those minor inconveniences, this is going to be one of the three least crowded days of the week at Magic Kingdom.

{ 30 comments… read them below or add one }

Amy May 3, 2014 at 4:18 pm

Thank you Josh! I have something to do tonight now! My husband will be just thrilled….

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Valerie May 3, 2014 at 4:38 pm

I always think you are awesome, but you are even more awesome when it is my month that you are breaking down! Thank you so much for all you do!!
Nov 17th–Why is MK closing at 7pm? Private event?

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Derek May 3, 2014 at 4:48 pm

Is there a MVMCP that tends to be the least crowded of the week?

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Lucy May 3, 2014 at 4:54 pm

We plan on hitting two non recommended park, DHS on the 16th and Magic Kingdom on the 18th. For DHS we’ll specifically attend EMH to see the Osborne Lights and we’re also doing EMH on MK because we always wanted to stay in the park til park closing. Our plan is to be there for hope drop (DHS arrival around 8AM and Crystal Palace reservations for 8AM), leave during the afternoon for a break and go back after sun down. Will that plan help us with crowds?

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Anonymous May 3, 2014 at 4:56 pm

Will you have the December calendar out by June 1st???

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Jennifer May 3, 2014 at 5:22 pm

Thanks, Josh! This is fantastic!

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Miranda May 3, 2014 at 6:12 pm

Thanks so much I have been waiting for this post. I noticed that MVMCP is no longer listed on Monday the 17th but MK is still closing at 7. That was the day I was planning to go so do I need to change my schedule to attend MVMCP another day?

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Stephanie May 3, 2014 at 7:11 pm

Thanks for the great info. On 11/20 Hollywood Studios closes at 6. Do you think that means they won’t do the osborne lights that night?

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Donna May 3, 2014 at 7:38 pm

Thank you Josh! :)

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elizabeth May 4, 2014 at 9:17 am

planning our first trip to wdw, 11/12-11/19. What time does the Osborne lights start? And do they do the show every night? Thanks for all of your help.

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Mona May 4, 2014 at 9:22 am

Hi Josh… Love your website. Have you heard anything about the Osborne Lights? Heard an ugly rumor that they may not be returning? Please, please, please let me know if you hear anything. Thank you very much.

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Jennifer May 4, 2014 at 10:01 am

Thank you!

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siskaren May 4, 2014 at 11:24 am

elizabeth,

The Osborne Lights turn on about 6:00 every night.

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Rick May 4, 2014 at 4:24 pm

Thanks so much for getting this posted this weekend! It’s perfect timing to get my plans finished before I have to make my ADRs!

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MJ May 5, 2014 at 7:41 am

With Hollywood Studios closing at 4 PM on 11/20 will we still be able to see the Osborne Spectacle of Lights? Thanks!

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Patrick May 5, 2014 at 9:07 am

If Fantasmic starts at 6:30, it’s over at 7pm, right? The guide says 9,000 people are exiting at 8pm. I’m assuming that’s a typo- I want a refund from this website!

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deb May 5, 2014 at 9:39 am

Hello!
Another site has AK closing at 5 pm and HS closing at 7 on November 29. Trying to finalize my ADRs and plans for week of 11/28-12/4, how likely is it that the hours will be extended? Any idea why HS would be listed as a 7 :00 closing for that date? Having trouble coming up with a viable plan for 28, 29 with a noon arrival on the 28th..we were going to hit EP just because of proximity, but having second thoughts due to this post- we always find your predictions to be right on target! Also wondering about Osbourne lights, we have never been and heard the rumors too.

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Jenn May 5, 2014 at 4:38 pm

Also wondering about Osborne Lights. Probably going to HS on Sun 11/9. Do you think they will be on that night? If so, what time? What about other nights that week? Thanks!!!! Planning my family’s 1st trip to Disney. This site has been so helpful. Thank you!!

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Robin May 6, 2014 at 9:03 am

Hi Josh! “Mona” asked a great question about the Osborne Lights! Any clue as to when their schedule will be posted? Nice pic of you, by the way, in the closet at Universal Studios!

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Robyn May 6, 2014 at 5:25 pm

Are the extra magic hours really keeping the magic kingdom open till 3 am on November 23. Has Disney made this official. This sounds awesome!

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Jessica Kelly May 13, 2014 at 5:59 am

Hello. 1st off, thank you so much for what you do! I planned our last trip entirely based on your site and we didn’t do the park hopper and it was one of the most relaxing and non-stressful experiences :) My question is this… this link is the official Disney inof I think, and they list the hours for HS as open until 8 the week of the 16th on the days you have it listed as closing at 7. Is this an old link I found and is your correct? Thanks in advance for any light you can shed on this :)

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Kari J. July 8, 2014 at 11:57 am

Is there a reason that MK is closing at 7 on Monday the 17th? Will this change or will they be adding a MVMCP that day?

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siskaren July 10, 2014 at 8:55 am
Kari J. July 10, 2014 at 7:05 pm

Thanks for the info!

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janell August 13, 2014 at 1:53 am

Tusker house just added dinners between 6 and 7 or 6 and 8 for many nights in November. What does this mean to have an adr after park hours and does it indicate a special event?

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Tiffany September 16, 2014 at 7:49 am

Hi! Can you tell me if Magic Kingdom is really going to be open until 3AM on Saturday, November 29? The Disney website is showing midnight. Thanks!

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Brad October 6, 2014 at 8:35 pm

Any answer to this question yet? I have been wondering the same thing. Not showing up on any apps that I have. Please let me know

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Brad October 12, 2014 at 7:13 pm

Hours just updated for MK 9am-12am EM 12am-2am

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Justin November 7, 2014 at 9:14 am

So helpful. Does the fact that Tuesday the 11th being the veteran’s day holiday change anything above? I believe above you mention the day off being Monday when it is in fact Tuesday. Would love to know if that changes any of the above reccomendations

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emily November 25, 2014 at 4:39 pm

ok, looking for advice here. we are going to MK on Thanksgiving (I know, I know) in the afternoon (I KNOW!) but it’s only because we somehow magically got an Anna and Elsa Fastpass. I’ve heard nightmares about trying to park at MK during the holidays. Any wisdom to maybe trying to park at epcot (in the 2-3pm area) and taking the monorail? or should we just go with mk parking? would love advice. thanks.

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