Monday January 23, 2017
Predicted 4-Park Crowd Level: 4.
Sum of Predicted 4-Park Average Wait Times: 112 minutes.
Actual 4-Park Crowd Level: 4.
Sum of Actual 4-Park Average Wait Times: 114 minutes.
Weather: High of 70 and low of 61. This is about the average high and low for January though the day was cooler than it had been for a couple of weeks.
Saturday ended up being considerably busier than expected with the tornado warning on Sunday pushing people to the day with nicer weather. Overall, weekend attendance was lower than expected even if wait times were so much higher on Saturday. Let’s see how the beginning of the week shaped up.
Waits at the non-recommended Animal Kingdom were longer than expected with downtime at three major attractions, including 6+ hours at Expedition Everest from around 1:30pm through close at 7:30pm, pushing up standby waits. When a FastPass+ attraction goes down at Animal Kingdom, guests can use their FastPass+ at that same attraction once it becomes available again OR any other FastPass+ attraction for the rest of the day. Combined with lower staffing, that puts a lot of strain on other attractions, which is why we see Kilimanjaro Safaris hitting 75+ minutes in the afternoon with the second loading platform out of service for most or all of the day.
Epcot was the most recommended Park coming off a busier weekend and the 23-minute predicted wait ended up being precisely what happened. This is what below average wait times at the Park look like – waits that at times may be surprisingly long. But such is life with so much capacity given to FastPass+. It does not take a lot of people waiting in standby at The Seas with Nemo to push up waits there in the early afternoon. On the other hand, it’s a walk-on for 75% of the day.
Hollywood Studios was supposed to come in at 42 minutes but ended up with a 38-minute overall average wait, thanks to Tower of Terror staying at full capacity for much of the day and the average overall wait at Toy Story Mania. Capacity still comes into play at Star Tours and The Great Movie Ride, but that’s built into the predictions. For whatever reason, the Studios typically sees some of its highest waits of the week on Mondays. That may be a sign that Disney’s marketing is working and people are expecting a large Star Wars presence at the Park or capacity is ramped up as the week progresses. But either way, wait times will be considerably lower tomorrow when the Park is recommended.
We were expecting 27 minutes at Magic Kingdom and ended up with 26 minutes as we see what may well be the best operating day of the year at Magic Kingdom with absolutely no downtime at major attractions. This day is more than doable, but do check the posted wait times early in the morning as they may increase faster than you’re expecting if you haven’t visited in the last couple of years (or even if you have).
We’ll see if we get a slight drop in crowds as we move one more day away from the weekend.