Here is the preview of the July 2012 Disney World Crowd Calendar:
Click to expand or click here for a more easily viewable/printable PDF file. If you’re not sure what the various numbers mean, click here and read below the updates at the top of the page, beginning with, “Here’s a quick explanation of how to read the calendar and what the numbers mean.”
The Crowd Calendar should be “finalized” along with the daily analysis in the next couple of days. There may be some small changes to the recommendations as I look over things more closely, but the general jist will remain the same.
Overall, July is the busiest month of the year in Walt Disney World, thanks to heavy attendance from South America and a heavier dose of Americans taking advantage of summer breaks in most school districts across the United States. Typically, there is less variance in crowd levels in July than any other month as well. In October, it’s not at all uncommon to go from seeing 30,000 people in the Magic Kingdom on a Mickey’s Halloween Party Friday with short hours and no nighttime entertainment to 60,000+ on a Saturday with much longer hours, Main Street Electrical Parade, and Wishes. In 2011, the biggest attendance swing from one day to the next was 37,982 people. Sorry, no decimal points on that one.
In July, crowds are similarly heavy most days. You’ll still find lower crowds and shorter waits should you visit the most recommended Park each day, but it isn’t the night and day difference that is commonly seen when there’s more variance in overall attendance, theme park hours, and nighttime entertainment. Add the heat, and the real success lies in arriving early, taking care of the attractions/characters that will have much longer waits in the afternoon first thing, and making efficient use of FASTPASS. Add in a lengthy afternoon break and a return to a theme park in the evening for some late night rides and the nighttime spectaculars and you’re golden.