Disney released the January 2016 operating schedule at the usual link: http://media.disneywebcontent.com/StaticFiles/ParkHours/WDWTravelAgent_january.pdf. Click refresh on your browser to load the newest version. You’ll notice that there are no Extra Magic Hours listed. I haven’t been able to confirm whether the lack of EMH is an oversight or it’s finally the end. Nothing has been communicated to cast members or travel agents. Long time readers may remember this gem from a couple of years ago now:
At this link. Or like a lot of things at Walt Disney World, this may just be a contract thing and Disney is negotiating with the various unions about hours and pay.
On the plus side, Main Street Electrical Parade is scheduled every day in January. Last year, it wasn’t scheduled on ten dates. January is more crowded than past years as predominantly South American visitors continue to prop up attendance. Long time readers may also remember “January 28 Walt Disney World Wait Times and the Reality of the Lowest Crowds of the Year,” which is my fifth or sixth favorite post of all time though nobody has taken me up on my offer to pay them $100. Much of January continues to be the second least crowded time of year at Walt Disney World, though September remains considerably less crowded overall.
The Christmas festivities at Magic Kingdom continue through the third and Christmas-level crowds should continue until then, before dropping off considerably on the 4th. Christmas level crowds have continued further into January over the last couple of years with the way school schedules have worked out, but everything is pointing to considerably lower crowds beginning on the 4th. Attendance is a little higher heading into Marathon Weekend from the 8th to 11th. And we see spring-break-level crowds over Martin Luther King Jr. weekend from the 15th to the 18th. But any time from then through the first week in February will be among the least crowded times of year to visit. And with arguably more pleasant weather, is my favorite time to visit.
We’ll see if Disney elects to continue the Extra Magic Hours campaign. If not, focusing on what you do instead of which day you do it will only become that much more important.