Avoiding crowds at Walt Disney World is a very difficult task, especially for first timers. So here are a few tips to help with crowd control:
1. Time of year. Disney is going to be less crowded in January-February than June-July. (January is usually pretty cold, even for Florida. I’d go more toward February.) May is a lovely time to go! You might get to see the Epcot Flower and Garden Festival, which is just stunning! The only time when Disney gets really crowded in May is during Star Wars Weekends at Hollywood Studios. That can work in your favor too, because there’s less people at the other parks during that time.
March Break is wicked crowded! March is probably Disney’s busiest month! I’ve been to Disney twice during that time, and it was horrible! I remember being at Epcot by the Norway pavilion. The rest of my family was in the washroom, so me and my mom were going to find a bench to sit and look at the map. There wasn’t even a place to lean on a wall!! So let your kids skip school for a few days and take them some time when the parks are less crowded, it’s more enjoyable for everyone!
2. Extra Magic Hours. This works well for anyone staying on Disney property. Park is closing and all the locals or people staying off site have to leave, but Disney resort guests get to stay longer on select nights (or on site guests can go to the park in the morning before it opens to the rest of the public)! It’s way less crowded since there’s about 2/3 less people there. (The only exception to this is the Epcot World Showcase, which opens to everyone at the same time.) Another perk of staying at a Disney Resort!
3. Schedule. This is very important! The night before, sit down with a map of the park your going to spend the next day at, and plan how things are going to go. Lay out everything. This also helps make sure everyone does everything they want to do, without running around the park looking for something to do next.
4. Character Dining. Character meet and greets make for long lines and lots of people. Most characters can be found at character dining, where you can sit down, enjoy a Disney meal, and the characters come to you! You can get all the pictures and autographs that you could get at a meet and greet without the line! Except you can do it with four characters instead of one! Make reservations ahead of time.
5. Main Street USA. Moms, I know your excited to hit the gift shops on Main Street, but there will be time for that later. As soon as the park opens, most people are going to be heading straight for the gift shops first. Get a head start on the rides. You will have time to shop later!
Hopefully these tips will help lessen the crowds on your Disney vacation!