Disney World Cheat Sheets – Maps, Touring Plans, and Wait Times

by josh on May 1, 2015

5/1/15 Update: Each Cheat Sheet has been updated with new maps, touring plans, strategies, and wait times.

Animal Kingdom:

Full Cheat Sheet: http://www.easywdw.com/cheatsheets/ak_cheatsheet_v3.pdf

Map Only: http://www.easywdw.com/cheatsheets/ak_map_v3.pdf

Epcot:

Full Cheat Sheet: http://www.easywdw.com/cheatsheets/ep_cheatsheet_v3.pdf

Map Only: http://www.easywdw.com/cheatsheets/ep_map_v3.pdf

Hollywood Studios:

Full Cheat Sheet: http://www.easywdw.com/cheatsheets/hs_cheatsheet_v3.pdf

Map Only: http://www.easywdw.com/cheatsheets/hs_map_v3.pdf

Magic Kingdom:

Full Cheat Sheet: http://www.easywdw.com/cheatsheets/mk_cheatsheet_v3.pdf

Map Only: http://www.easywdw.com/cheatsheets/mk_map_v3.pdf

Open up Magic Kingdom and follow along.

The first page is a map that’s been color-coded based on the best time to visit the various attractions. Red attractions are your top morning priorities or best saved for the very end of the day. Yellow attractions are best visited in the first/second hour of operation or in the last two hours. They’re a lower priority than the red attractions because waits build slower and peak lower.  Green attractions are designated “anytime,” which is another way of saying they’re best saved for the afternoon when waits at the higher priority attractions are longer.  Most shows are designated “green” because you want to save them for the afternoon or evening when waits are longer at the major attractions. Occasionally a show will be “yellow,” which means it’s more likely to fill to capacity and seeing the first or last showtime is more important. Attractions that offer FastPass+ are followed by a +. FastPass+ kiosks are noted with the FP+ symbol. Also included are bathrooms, quick services, restaurants, and the larger stores.

Moving along to the next page…

General Touring Philosophy: With 60+ attractions, Magic Kingdom is best toured over two or more days. The best plans compartmentalize the park by visiting two or three Lands each day. Visit the character and attraction priorities in one Land before moving on to the next. Have lunch and then head back to the same Lands visiting the “anytime attractions.”  This minimizes both waiting and walking. One-day touring will require more walking. You can still accomplish a lot by touring intelligently, but some attractions will need to be skipped.

This is a very brief introduction to Park touring. Magic Kingdom is so complicated that I could go on about touring for 1,000 or more pages. But you don’t need to know all that. In the case of Magic Kingdom, the best approach is to visit half of the Park on two separate days. You want to move quickly in the morning, visiting the red and yellow attractions, before taking it easy in the afternoon and evening.

Characters: Unlike the other three parks, there are characters that need to be prioritized ahead of the priority attractions. If you’d like to visit Anna/Elsa, Merida, or Cinderella/Rapunzel, you need to visit first thing in the morning, in the last hour they’re scheduled to appear, or use FastPass+ to avoid 30 to 75+ minute waits.

Characters are probably the most important and most overlooked attractions at the Parks. If you don’t have kids or otherwise don’t have any interest in meeting a college kid pretending to be Aurora – congratulations.  Things are much easier. If you do, certain characters need to be prioritized over Space Mountain or Peter Pan’s Flight.  That’s because the characters can only meet one person/group at a time. So 100 people in line for Merida is going to take an hour. Whereas 2,000 people an hour can ride Space Mountain. Fortunately, FastPass+ makes it easier to meet several priority characters.

Rope Drop: Magic Kingdom opens its ticketing gates 60 minutes before official park open. Guests are held just inside the entrance in the courtyard in front of the train station. The opening show featuring Mickey and the gang arriving via steam train, begins about 13 minutes prior to park open and lasts about six minutes. The best viewing area is front and center, but this puts you at a disadvantage entering the park as everyone off to the sides will enter before you. To minimize morning waits, make your way to the far left or right of the courtyard in front of one of the entrances. At the conclusion of the show, the park is opened and Cast Members walk guests slowly up Main Street and through the Castle. Break off from this group as early as possible. If you’re headed to Adventureland or Frontierland, make a left after passing Casey’s Corner. If you’re headed to Tomorrowland, take a right after passing Plaza Ice Cream Parlor. If you’re headed to Mine Train, veer right of Cinderella Castle toward Mad Tea Party and take a left at Mad Tea Party toward the Mine Train’s entrance across from Winnie the Pooh.

“Rope drop” is the colloquial term used for theme park opening and this section discusses how it works at each Park. You generally want to arrive 30 to 45 minutes before official Park open to position yourself at the front of the Mickey Readers that replaced the turnstiles. This guarantees that you’ll be among the first people to enter the Park once it opens. Arriving 45 minutes prior to open is most important at Hollywood Studios, where waits at Toy Story Mania build quickly and Jedi Training Academy spots quickly fill. Arrive closer to Park open and you’ll find yourself 30 or 40 people back, resulting in longer waits at the attractions all day. Worse, you can bet the family of 80 in front of you have all forgotten which finger they used last time, delaying things further.

FastPass+ Priority:

  1. Anna and Elsa at Princess Fairytale Hall
  2. Seven Dwarfs Mine Train
  3. Peter Pan’s Flight
  4. Space Mountain
  5. Splash Mountain (when high temperatures are 80+ degrees)
  6. Cinderella and Rapunzel at Princess Fairytale Hall
  7. Enchanted Tales with Belle
  8. Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
  9. Ariel at Ariel’s Grotto
  10. Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin
  11. Tomorrowland Speedway
  12. Jungle Cruise
  13. Haunted Mansion
  14. Splash Mountain (when high temperatures are less than 80 degrees)
  15. Pirates of the Caribbean
  16. The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh
  17. Mickey at Town Square Theater
  18. Barnstormer
  19. Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade (Doesn’t save any time and the location is in the sun, but there are a limited amount available)
  20. Main Street Electrical Parade (Prioritize first/only parade only. Second parade on the same night sees light crowds)
  21. Wishes
  22. it’s a small world
  23. Tinker Bell at Town Square Theater
  24. Dumbo the Flying Elephant
  25. Under the Sea Journey of the Little Mermaid
  26. Magic Carpets of Aladdin
  27. Mad Tea Party
  28. Monsters Inc. Laugh Floor
  29. Mickey’s PhilharMagic

This list is a lot less ridiculous at the other Parks, where there are fewer choices and the priority attractions are much clearer. The best use of FastPass+ is at the attractions that have long, unpleasant afternoon waits in the afternoon and early evening. Using FastPass+ at Anna and Elsa in the afternoon helps bypass the rope drop crowds and reduces your total experience time from as long as three hours to under 15 minutes. Using FP+ at Mine Train also means you can move away from the rope drop clump and head elsewhere instead of jostling for position with thousands of other people as your first experience of the day. Peter Pan’s Flight, with its long, mostly boring 60+ minute wait in the afternoon is another priority. Moving down the list, you’ll find attractions that otherwise have the longest afternoon waits, limited FastPass+ availability, or are more difficult to experience. With the recent update, I’ve dropped the priority of the nighttime shows. The Wishes FP+ viewing area is jammed so tight that it offers little benefit. Most guests can easily file into another area close to showtime. I’ve also dropped the Electrical Parade farther down the list because it’s a less desirable location than the viewing area in front of the Castle and it’s too far back to offer desirable views of Celebrate the Magic or Wishes after.

FastPass+ Kiosks:

  1. Adventureland: Jungle Cruise’s old FASTPASS machines to the left of the entrance
  2. Adventureland: Breezeway to the right of Diamond Horseshoe across from Swiss Treehouse
  3. Fantasyland: To the right of Mickey’s PhilharMagic
  4. Tomorrowland: To the left of the Stitch’s Great Escape entrance

Fortunately, this list is far less important than it used to be now that all guests can schedule FastPass+ reservations in advance and change times/attractions via DisneyWorld.com or the mobile app. Still, you may not have access to a smartphone or otherwise need help with something and you currently need to visit a kiosk to select a 4th, 5th, 6th, etc. FP+ experience after you use your initial three.

The next section is touring plans:

Two-Day Morning Plan Day 1:

  • Use FastPass+ at Mine Train (12pm-1pm), Enchanted Tales with Belle (1pm-2pm), Anna and Elsa at Fairytale Hall or Alternate (2pm–3pm)
  1. Ride Space Mountain: 9am – 9:20am
  2. Ride Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin: 9:25am – 9:35am
  3. Ride Astro Orbiter: 9:37am – 9:55am
  4. Ride Tomorrowland Speedway (if desired): 10am – 10:20am
  5. Ride The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh: 10:25am – 10:40am
  6. Ride Dumbo: 10:45am – 11am
  7. Ride The Barnstormer: 11:03am – 11:20am
  8. Ride Journey of the Little Mermaid: 11:25am – 11:45am
  9. Have lunch:Be Our Guest and Pinocchio Village Haus are closest.
  10. Ride Seven Dwarfs Mine Train with FP+: 12:45pm – 1pm
  11. Visit Enchanted Tales with Belle with FP+: 1pm – 1:30pm
  12. See Mickey’s PhilharMagic and/or Prince Regal Royal Carrousel: 1:35pm – 2pm
  13. Visit Anna and Elsa at Princess Fairytale Hall with FP+: 2pm – 2:15pm
  14. Visit Fantasyland FastPass+ kiosk to schedule a 4th FP+ for after the Parade
  15. See Festival of Fantasy Parade in Frontierland or Liberty Square: 2:30pm – 3:15pm

Afternoon and Evening: Consider an afternoon break or visit the anytime attractions in Fantasyland and Tomorrowland like Mickey’s PhilharMagic, Prince Regal Carrousel, Monsters Inc. Laugh Floor, Tomorrowland PeopleMover, Carousel of Progress, and Stitch’s Great Escape.

Additional Afternoon FastPass+ Availability: Unlike the other parks, Magic Kingdom has plenty of FP+ enabled attractions and 20 or more will still have availability around 2pm. Schedule a high priority attraction with limited availability for after a break or schedule several lower priority experiences back to back if you plan to stay in the park. Check easywdw.com/waits or the My Disney Experience app to verify wait times are long enough to make searching out a kiosk and booking a FP+ worthwhile.

Two-Day Morning Plan Day 2:

  • Use FastPass+ at Peter Pan’s Flight (10am-11am), Jungle Cruise (11am-12pm), and Pirates of the Caribbean (12pm-1pm)
  1. Ride Big Thunder Mountain Railroad: 9:10am – 9:20am – Ride again if desired
  2. Ride Splash Mountain: 9:23am – 9:45am
  3. Ride Haunted Mansion: 9:55am – 10:15am
  4. Ride it’s a small world: 10:17am – 10:40am
  5. Ride Peter Pan’s Flight with FastPass+: 10:42am – 10:55am
  6. Ride Jungle Cruise with FastPass+: 11:05am – 11:25am
  7. Have lunch. Tortuga Tavern and Pecos Bill are closest. Columbia Harbour House, Liberty Tree Tavern, and Casey’s Corner are relatively close.
  8. Ride Pirates of the Caribbean with FastPass+: 12:30pm – 12:50pm
  9. Visit the Adventureland Breezeway FP+ kiosk to select a 4th experience

Afternoon and Evening: Consider an afternoon break or visit the anytime attractions like Tom Sawyer Island, Hall of Presidents, Liberty Square Riverboat, Country Bear Jamboree, Enchanted Tiki Room, and Swiss Family Treehouse.

Two-Day Character-Centric Morning Plan Day 1:

  • Use FastPass+ at Seven Dwarfs Mine Train (11am-12pm) Enchanted Tales with Belle (12pm-1pm), Anna and Elsa at Fairytale Hall (1pm-2pm)
  1. Meet Mickey in Town Square Theater: 9am – 9:10am
  2. Ride Peter Pan’s Flight: 9:15am – 9:30am
  3. Meet Ariel at Ariel’s Grotto: 9:35am – 9:50am
  4. Ride Journey of the Little Mermaid: 9:52am – 10:05am
  5. Meet Gaston outside Gaston’s Tavern in New Fantasyland: 10:07am – 10:15am
  6. Meet Daisy and Minnie at Pete’s Silly Sideshow: 10:20am – 10:30am
  7. Meet Donald and Goofy at Pete’s Silly Sideshow: 10:31am – 10:40am
  8. Ride The Barnstormer: 10:42am – 10:55am
  9. Ride Dumbo the Flying Elephant: 11am – 11:20am
  10. Ride Seven Dwarfs Mine Train with FastPass+: 11:25am – 11:40am
  11. Have lunch. Pinocchio Village Haus and Be Our Guest are closest. Cosmic Ray’s is nearby.
  12. Experience Enchanted Tales with Belle with FastPass+: 12:40pm – 1:10pm
  13. Meet Anna and Elsa in Princess Fairytale Hall: 1:15pm – 1:35pm

4th FastPass+ Selection: Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh or Tinker Bell are your best choices.

Afternoon and Evening: Consider an afternoon break or visit the anytime attractions in Fantasyland and Tomorrowland like Mickey’s PhilharMagic, Prince Regal Carrousel, Monsters Inc. Laugh Floor, Tomorrowland PeopleMover, Carousel of Progress, and Stitch’s Great Escape.

Two-Day Character-Centric Morning Plan Day 2:

Use FastPass+ at Buzz Lightyear (12:15pm-1:15pm), Space Mountain (1:15pm-2:15pm), and Cinderella/Rapunzel (2:15pm-3:15pm)

  1. Meet Merida in Fairytale Garden: 9am – 9:25am
  2. Meet Aladdin and Jasmine at Agrabah Bazaar: 9:30am – 9:45am
  3. Ride Jungle Cruise: 9:50am – 10:15am
  4. Ride Big Thunder Mountain Railroad: 10:25am – 10:45am
  5. Ride Splash Mountain: 10:47am – 11:15am
  6. Meet Chip and Dale across from Diamond Horseshoe: 11:20am – 11:35am
  7. Have lunch. Pecos Bill and Tortuga Tavern are closest. Columbia Harbour House and Liberty Tree Tavern are nearby.
  8. Ride Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin with FastPass+: 1pm – 1:15pm
  9. Meet Buzz Lightyear at the exit to Space Ranger Spin: 1:17pm – 1:40pm
  10. Ride Space Mountain with FastPass+: 1:45pm – 2:05pm
  11. Meet Rapunzel/Cinderella at Princess Fairytale Hall with FP+: 2:15pm – 2:30pm
  12. See Festival of Fantasy Parade in Frontierland or Liberty Square: 2:40pm – 3:20pm

4th FastPass+ selection: Town Square Tinker Bell, Tomorrowland Speedway, it’s a small world, Haunted Mansion are good choices.

Afternoon and Evening: Consider an afternoon break or visit the anytime attractions like Tom Sawyer Island, Hall of Presidents, Liberty Square Riverboat, Country Bear Jamboree, Enchanted Tiki Room, and Swiss Family Treehouse. Visit it’s a small world, Haunted Mansion, and any other skipped attractions as late in the evening as possible. Check Times Guide for missed characters (Tiana in particular) and visit them in the last hour they’re scheduled to appear.

1-Day Plan

  • Use FastPass+ at Seven Dwarfs Mine Train (9am-10am), Jungle Cruise (10:30am-11:30am), Space Mountain (11:30am-12:30pm)
  1. Ride Peter Pan’s Flight: 9am – 9:10am
  2. Ride The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh: 9:15am – 9:25am
  3. Ride Seven Dwarfs Mine Train with FastPass+: 9:27am – 9:40am
  4. Ride Big Thunder Mountain Railroad: 9:55am – 10:15am
  5. Ride Splash Mountain: 10:17am – 10:40am
  6. Ride Pirates of the Caribbean: 10:50am – 11:20am
  7. Ride Jungle Cruise with FastPass+: 11:22am – 11:45am
  8. Ride Space Mountain with FastPass+: 12pm – 12:20pm
  9. Visit Stitch’s Great Escape FP+ kiosk and select Buzz Lightyear that includes 1:15pm
  10. Have lunch. Cosmic Ray’s is nearby.
  11. Ride Buzz Lightyear with FastPass+: 1:15pm – 1:30pm
  12. Visit Stitch’s Great Escape FastPass+ kiosk and select Haunted Mansion that includes 2:15pm
  13. Ride Tomorrowland PeopleMover or see Monsters Inc. Laugh Floor: 1:35pm-2pm
  14. Ride Haunted Mansion with FastPass+: 2:15pm-2:35pm
  15. Visit the Fantasyland FastPass+ kiosk and select it’s a small world that includes 3:30pm
  16. See the Festival of Fantasy Parade from Liberty Square or Frontierland: 2:40pm – 3:15pm
  17. Ride it’s a small world with FastPass+: 3:30pm – 3:50pm
  18. Visit the Fantasyland FastPass+ kiosk and select another attraction of interest
  19. See Mickey’s PhilharMagic: 4pm – 4:30pm
  20. Ride Prince Regal Royal Carrousel: 4:32pm – 4:45pm
  21. Have dinner: Pinocchio Village Haus is closest. Be Our Guest Restaurant would be perfect if you’ve snagged reservations.

Afternoon and Evening: Your evening depends greatly on when Magic Kingdom closes, when Wishes  is scheduled, and ultimately how long you want to stay. Visit attractions marked anytime on the map until about 30 minutes before Wishes then move to Main Street to see the show. Return to Liberty Square or Frontierland for the Electrical Parade, keeping in mind the second Parade (when offered) is far less crowded. Return to Tomorrowland with two hours to close and Fantasyland in the last hour to find much shorter waits than the afternoon, ending the day with Peter Pan’s Flight and Mine Train if desired.

The website’s opinion is that you should enter the theme parks with a solid plan of what you want to accomplish in the first two to three hours. After that, you’re free to slow down and take things as they come, knowing you’ve already visited the attractions that will see long afternoon waits. The nice thing about the morning plans is that they always work – regardless of anticipated crowds later in the day.  I’ve included expected times you’ll arrive at and depart each attraction. Don’t fret too much if you’re a few minutes ahead or behind schedule. It will all work out. The plans work during morning Extra Magic Hour or with an 8am open. Just subtract an hour.

Other Parks offer a variety of unique plans. For example, Animal Kingdom includes a late arrival plan a plan that doesn’t use FastPass+. Hollywood Studios includes a standard 1-day plan and a second 1-day plan that focuses on characters.

The next section discusses the major entertainment options that need to be planned around:

Late Arrival and Nighttime Crowds: Crowds only diminish most nights after 9pm as families invariably leave early with small children. The later it gets, the lower wait times will be, particularly if close is 11pm or later. Use FastPass+ when you arrive when wait times are longest. Visit the green anytime attractions until two to three hours before close. Then move on to the yellow attractions like Buzz Lightyear and Big Thunder Mountain and finish the night with the highest priority attractions like Peter Pan’s Flight, Mine Train, and Space Mountain.

Main Street Electrical Parade is scheduled on between 3 and 7 nights per week, usually between 7pm and 11pm. It begins on Main Street and exits to the left of Splash Mountain. The best viewing locations are near Pecos Bill and outside Hall of Presidents in Liberty Square. Two Parades are often scheduled with the second beginning two hours after the first. If this is the case, see the later Parade as it will be far less crowded. Arrive 20 to 30 minutes early if there’s one Parade or 10 to 15 minutes early for the second Parade. The FastPass+ viewing location is around the Flag Pole in Town Square on Main Street for both the Electrical Parade and Festival of Fantasy. It provides a decent view, but the viewing area is directly in the sun and the parades are easy enough to see without FastPass+ in most situations.

Celebrate the Magic and Wishes: The Castle Projection Show usually begins 15 minutes before Wishes. Position yourself on Main Street just in front of Casey’s Corner for the best view of the show, which is almost immediately followed by Wishes Fireworks. Arrive 30 minutes before Wishes is scheduled to start. The Wishes FastPass+ viewing areas are on both sides of Main Street in gated areas. Seeing Wishes with FP+ is not recommended due to how crowded the area becomes. Most guests can see it just as easily, or potentially even more easily, from a non-reserved location. If you’re exiting after the show, try to use the Main Street bypass in between Plaza Restaurant and Tomorrowland Terrace.

Exit: Consider getting in line for Mine Train, Peter Pan’s Flight, or another attraction with a few minutes until close. Main Street stores will remain open for about an hour after park close. Linger a bit while others exit in front of you. The Express Monorail is the fastest way to the Transportation and Ticket Center (parking lot) unless the line is significantly backed up. The ferry is often a more comfortable ride with more room to spread out, particularly up the stairs on the second level.

Next, there’s a brief discussion on how to exit the Park with minimal hassle. In most cases, you’ll want to hang around for 30 to 45 minutes after official Park close. This is a great opportunity to shop or take pictures with fewer people around. And by the time you exit, there will be far fewer people waiting for the tram, monorail, or ferry boat. Where would you rather be? Standing on a crowded bus on the way back to All-Star Sports or shopping for Mickey Ears before taking a relaxing boat ride back to the Grand Flo DVC?  Right.

Finally, the last few pages are wait times charts. They assume that the Park specified is recommended that day. The Park hours and crowd level are in the upper left hand corner.  The attractions are down the left and the time of day goes across the top. This is not an exact science. I’ve stood in front of Tower of Terror and watched the wait go from 90 minutes to 30 minutes to 50 minutes over the course of just a minute or two. But this will give you an idea about what to expect over the course of the day depending on the crowd level. Make sure to note the Park hours and crowd level at the top of each chart.

So that’s that.  Despite the name of the website, I realize there is not a lot of “easy” content available.  I think this is a pretty easy way to get going on a solid plan of attack.  If nothing else, the map is colorful.

{ 273 comments… read them below or add one }

Cassie June 12, 2014 at 2:17 pm

Josh, thanks for the updates with the new tier system. I have less than a week until I schedule FP’s, perfect timing for me. I’ve said it before…you’re the best.

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Mike June 12, 2014 at 8:16 pm

Great updates. Particularly appreciate you keeping the FP+ kiosk locations up to date. Hear any rumors on when we may be able to book extra rolling FPs on phone app?

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Sarah June 13, 2014 at 12:22 pm

Josh, I would just like to say thank you. My husband and I are going to WDW together in the fall. I’ve been before, but this is my husband’s first trip and my first experience doing all the planning. Your recommendations are much appreciated, the updated information you’ve provided is invaluable, and I’m confident it will all end up being a huge help to us when the time comes.

As an added thank you, I also purchased your book. It’s available on Amazon, people!

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Jon June 13, 2014 at 12:45 pm

Josh – Taking the family in September to MK and Epcot. Question – As crowds are lower in September, would we be best suited sticking to the proposed itineraries or is there any flexibility? I assume the headliner attractions are always mobbed but wondering about the tier 2 and tier 3 attractions. Thanks for all the great advice!

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Anne June 14, 2014 at 4:53 am

Got my book yesterday!!!!!! Haven’t been able to read it yet. My 3 year old decided it was his book and carried it around last night saying he had to study and the book “is my special Mickey book.” Then he took it to bed with him. Of course he chooses today to sleep in so I’m not so patiently waiting to pry it out of his sweet little hands when he gets up. Clearly we could use a second copy. Thanks Josh for the most amazing blog OF ALL TIME!

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Bill June 14, 2014 at 5:26 am

great book
Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #649 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
#1 in Books > Travel > Specialty Travel > Theme Parks
#1 in Books > Travel > Specialty Travel > Tourist Destinations & Museums
This was on amazon this AM

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Jeremy L June 14, 2014 at 2:54 pm

We are going to be buying a copy. Congratulations on it being released Josh!

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Michael C June 29, 2014 at 11:29 am

Google Now just recommend your site, just had a quick skim over and wow already love it, going to WDW in less than two weeks with two young children, one of whom is autistic. Your guides and information is going to save a lot of stress, upset and us aimlessly wondering around. Time to get reading and planning

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Brandi H. August 14, 2014 at 1:09 pm

THANK YOU!! I was completely overwhelmed with planning our first trip back to WDW in 4 years…until I found this website! I am much more confident now and can’t wait!

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Ashley October 9, 2014 at 6:00 pm

Hello! Than you SO much for all of the information! We’re going to WDW in about a week or so. I have found mixed answers to this question. Can you take photos and get autographs with the Frozen cast, Little Mermaid Cast, or Beauty & the Beast Cast before or after the shows?

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Candace October 10, 2014 at 4:09 am

Thanks for an awesome vacation! We’re just about to check out and followed most of your recommendations this week. It worked like clockwork! Fewer things are more fun than not having to wait more than 15 minutes for any ride at Disney World! Actually my favorite part was getting lost in an empty liberty square and still walking right up to Thunder Mountain and Splash Mountain one morning! Thank you!!! And I bought the book too! :)

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A. Devtt October 30, 2014 at 10:28 am

We planned our trip based on websites like this recommending an Oct. time frame. We were in Disney the week of Oct. 11-18. We could not believe the crowds. Every ride was at minimum 45-60 min wait time. We went to Magic Kingdom 3 different times, and each time the amount of people at the park made us want to leave. The workers said it reminded them of mid summer. The more popular rides had wait times of 90-120 minutes. (Peter pan, Snow white, Pirates) Needless to say we were extremely disappointed and wondered the accuracy of the crowds that were predicted.

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josh October 30, 2014 at 10:45 am

Check the crowd calendar to see you visited during above average crowds (5s to 7s): http://www.easywdw.com/category/calendar/10-october-2014-crowd-calendar/.

My guess is you also chose to visit Magic Kingdom on the least recommended days.

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John R. March 15, 2015 at 6:22 am

Josh, with all the changes/closures at the parks in the past few months, will you be updating the Disney World Cheat Sheets (Touring Plans) any time soon? Going in September and my family would like to follow your very practical touring plan(s). Awesome website! Thanks, John.

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Allison March 19, 2015 at 11:19 am

My family is also going to Disney for the first time in September of 2015 and I have purchased your book. Would love to see the park times/closures for September as I am booking dining reservations this weekend. Your advice has been awesome…don’t stop now please!!!!

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Rob G. May 1, 2015 at 9:57 am

Aaargh! You have *literally* ruined my planning binder with these updates. Now I’m going to have to print everything out again to get the “latest” info. I’m going to the DizzBoards and let them know in my Pre-Trip Report how you “ruined” my vacation.

Just joshin’ you. (See what I did there?) Thanks!

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Linda May 4, 2015 at 3:00 pm

We just got back from a 9 day trip and we could not believe the crowds. April 16th-25th was not necessarily a very busy time but the crowds and waits we encountered were unlike anything we had seen in 13 years. I believe that the combination of websites promoting “rope drop” and the opening of BOG for breakfast is what made the first hour at MK seem like early afternoon at just 9:15am. We remembered those first two hours being so lovely and empty but we didn’t see that at all. The restaurant brought so many people to the park early and wanting to get in before the regular crowds that it was so hard to any rides more than once. We used to enjoy Peter Pan, Space Mountain and Haunted Mansion several times each day but this time we did each just once.
I honestly think that the new suggestion needs to be to stay in the park during the later hours. This is when we saw a major reduction in crowds. We were in the recommended parks each day (sorry we missed you on 4/20!) so it must be something to do with FP+. Do you notice that even the mornings are now crowded? We truly miss the good old days and need to rethink a yearly visit. I also noticed a decline in the personalities of the CMs. Oh well…we will always treasure our wonderful trips and will of course, follow your suggestions when we do plan another visit!

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JayStemple May 5, 2015 at 7:18 am

I, too have notice cast members are less friendly than they were 5-10 years ago. Could be a generational thing. Most of them are college kids or recent grads who are so hooked to their social media and iphones that just a few minutes without looking at them can make them cranky

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Maria May 14, 2015 at 7:45 pm

Thank you very much for all the information you provide Josh! I had been to WDW long time ago, and now I had the opportunity to go with my husband and 7yr old daughter.
Your site helped us soooooooo much to plan our vacation! We were able to plan a great vacation from when to go, which parks to visit, our touring plan, attractions, character meeting, dining, everything we had it covered by reading your site. Our trip went great and we have great memories to treasure! Thank You very much! Sure we are buying your book!

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Lyv May 23, 2015 at 8:38 pm

Just found your website through a suggestion on disboards. You are truly a gift to so many of us who do not have the talent nor the patience to do what you do. Amazed and so grateful!

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Renessa May 24, 2015 at 4:23 am

Thanks for the updates!!! You rock!!

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Nicky June 19, 2015 at 7:06 am

Hi have just found this website when planning our trip in July – lots of helpful infirmation THANK YOU!
So far have printed off Epcot sheets and wondered if anyone could tell me what the different crowd levels are? I’m assuming Crowd Level 9 is the busiest time of year. Can anyone tell me which crowd level applies for second two weeks in July?
Thanks

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