By the co-author of The easy Guide to Your Walt Disney World Visit 2018, the best-reviewed Disney World guidebook series ever.

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yourfirstvisit.net—Disney World Instructions for the First-Time Visitor



Disney World Crowds in 2015



By Dave Shute

December  January   February  March   April   May   June   July

2015 CROWDS AT WALT DISNEY WORLD

Walt Disney World Crowds in 2015 from yourfirstvisit.netThe chart lower on the page shows my forecasts for 2015 crowds by week at Walt Disney World.

Dates in it are the beginning of the week, and the forecast covers the recommended Saturday-Sunday 9 day stays.

(For 2016 crowds, click here, and for 2017 crowds, see this.)

Crowd levels are ranked by week from 1-11 in the following way:

1: Lowest of the year

2: Lower

3: Low

4: Low-plus

5: Moderate-minus

6: Moderate

7: Moderate-plus

8: High-minus

9: High

10: Higher

11: Highest
Final 2015 Walt Disney World Crowd Calendar v2

HOW TO INTERPRET THE 2015 DISNEY WORLD CROWD CALENDAR

Dates are the beginning of the week.

The “low crowd” weeks–those colored green, and rated 1-4–represent the only crowd levels a family visiting for the first time, and unsure if it will ever return, should consider.

However, lower crowds, especially lowest crowds, do not always mean a better week. The lowest weeks are low for a reason–typically because they are in the hurricane or the ride closure seasons.

The “moderate crowd” weeks–those in black and rated 5-7–have crowd levels I would not recommend to first time visitors. However, I’d go during such weeks myself with no hesitation, and think these levels are OK for returning visitors who don’t need to see everything and already know how to work Walt Disney World.

The “high crowd” weeks–those in red, rated 8-11–should be avoided by everyone. They aren’t, which is why they are so high.

MY DISNEY WORLD CROWD CALENDAR GOES UP TO “11”

The influence of the Unofficial Guide  and TouringPlans.com has led almost all Disney World crowd calendars to top out at 10.

However, I’ve always thought that the really nastiest weeks of the year deserved an 11 for emphasis.

So, in homage to Spinal Tap, I assigned 11 to “highest.”

MORE ON WHEN TO GO TO WALT DISNEY WORLD

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153 comments

1 Mike { 04.13.15 at 7:20 am }

Thinking of attending the MVMCP on the first day. That would be Nov. 8th. Have been to it on other days and it was crowded. Is the first day of the party crowded or normal crowded?

2 Dave { 04.13.15 at 5:13 pm }

Mike it should be “normal”!!

3 Tonya { 04.13.15 at 3:20 pm }

I am planning on taking my 11 year old daughter May 30 – June 6. I know this is busy time but when we could go. We have never been before. Wanting to know if you have any suggestions to make this a smooth trip? Is it worth it to do park hopper passes? Any help is appreciated.

4 Dave { 04.13.15 at 5:24 pm }
5 Mal { 05.15.15 at 11:23 am }

We will be at Disney Oct 29-Nov 6th. Going to MNSSHP on the 1st. Any recommendations on which park which day? Or any other good tips for us 1st timers???? Thanks so much!
P.S. We have 2 LO’s w/ us.

6 Dave { 05.16.15 at 11:43 am }

Mal, I do have a few thousand good tips for first timers on this site lol! Start at the home page and work your way through its topics.

October 29 avoid Epcot
October 30 avoid AK and Epcot
October 31 avoid HS and Epcot
November 1 avoid HS and Epcot
11/2 avoid MK
11/3 avoid Epcot
11/4 avoid MK and AK
11/5 avoid Epcot
11/6 avoid AK and Epcot

7 Mike { 06.18.15 at 2:53 pm }

Dave, thank you! your site has helped us plan two great family vacations. avoiding crowded weeks significantly increases everyones enjoyment. Understandably, you rate the week of Thanksgiving a “10” . In sharp contrast, the week prior to this is rated a “2”. how about the weekend in between? e.g. Sat Nov 21st, Sun 22nd and Mon the 23rd and Tue the 24th ? closer to 2 or 10? when do the “10” crowds tend to arrive ? Sun, Mon? or not until Wed? We are considering flying out Thur Nov 19th and spending 6 full days at the parks. flying back to LA Thanksgiving day (a much quieter travel day compared to Wednesday before Tgiving). thanks again! -Mike

8 Dave { 06.19.15 at 7:19 am }

Mike it used to be that Weds and following were the worst bits of Thanksgiving week, but now it’s pretty much all week–beginning Sunday the 22nd. The 20th and 21st should be fine.

The 20th, avoid AK
The 21st, avoid MK and HS
The 22nd, avoid HS
The 23rd avoid MK
The 24th avoid Epcot
The 25th avoid MK and AK

9 maria { 07.16.15 at 7:11 am }

Hi Dave,
So just to be sure, before making reservations….i live abroad and i’m taking my 11 yr old daughter for the first time (for her) this year. Should we go Dec. 11 – 19, or Dec. 12-20. I’m afraid the 19 will get very crowded already. What’s your advice? this is a good time to go right?
Thanks so much. Maria

10 Dave { 07.16.15 at 7:36 am }

Yes, Maria, the 11th-19th will see one fewer day of high crowds than the 12th to 20th!

11 Michele V { 08.10.15 at 8:07 pm }

Hello,
Do you know why it is so busy during the first 2 weeks in October? We usually go the 3rd week in Sept but the last 2 years have been very rainy. We thought we would try Oct.
Thanks so much!

12 Dave { 08.13.15 at 8:47 am }

Michele, it’s not very busy then, but the uptick in crowds you see comes from fall breaks being focused on Columbus Day.

13 KAREN { 08.20.15 at 6:30 pm }

Hi, first trip next two weeks starting Monday 24th Aug. I have been checking the live crowd sites this week and the major rides still have lon waits.
will they go down alot next week?

14 Dave { 08.21.15 at 12:08 pm }

Karen, the major rides always have long lines. They are simply much less long during quieter periods–as the week of the 24th will be. But you still need a plan, good FastPass+ selections, etc to minimize waits.

15 Lynn { 08.26.15 at 6:52 pm }

We are finding that all the hotels at Disney even Marriott are sold out for December 1 – December 11th. This is rated slow time. What is going on? Anyway you can answer ASAP? Thank you!!!!

16 Dave { 08.27.15 at 6:38 pm }

Lynn, this happens every year at this time of year. Don’t worry about it. I’ll write a more detailed post early next week on this topic, but the short version is that Disney’s hotels are always highly booked, and don’t serve as a crowd calendar.

17 Lynn { 08.28.15 at 9:20 am }

Thanks Dave, however it is all the hotels. It is every Marriott and all the hotels are packed for some reason like we have never seen before last two weeks in November/beg. of December time frame when it is not supposed to be too busy yet to have all those chains and Disney tells me something very busy is going on and don’t want to stand in at least 45 min lines for each one. That is why I wanted to check. Thank you!

18 Dave { 08.29.15 at 8:49 am }

Lynn, November is a different issue–Thanksgiving is always a zoo, and sees hotels everywhere in Orlando booked up. There’s also two 20,000 person conventions in town (which don’t affect WDW crowds) one before and one after Thanksgiving.

I checked Marriott for 11/29 to 12/5 and found three pages of Orlando availability in its various brands. At WDW, rooms were bookable then at Pop, Sports, Music, CB, the Cabins at FW, AKL, BC, SS, OKW, BLT and VGF.

So I think what’s hurting you is an 11 day trip. At 90% occupancy at WDW (and 80% in the rest of the 100,000 rooms in Orlando), and rooms booked up to 500 days ahead, it will be hard to find a room available at this late date for 11 nights, and you may have to break your hotel reservations into chunks. A travel agent can do this perhaps more easily than you can…

19 Lynn { 08.29.15 at 9:58 am }

Thank you Dave! What about Dev 1-Dec 11 vs Nov 5- Nov 20 which would be more busy at Disney? Your the best for looking into this!!!!!

20 Dave { 08.30.15 at 8:45 am }

Lynn, they are about the same, but the November dates will be harder to book as they are closer.

21 Kristin { 09.03.15 at 8:16 am }

Hi Dave! We’ll be in Orlando 9/5-9/11. We are only visiting the Magic Kingdom for one day with our 2 year old. I’m assuming the Magic Kingdom will crowded Sat-Mon because of Labor Day. Would you recommend visiting the park Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday? Thanks!

22 Dave { 09.03.15 at 12:28 pm }

Kristin, not much in the way of crowds over Labor Day. MK will be best Wednesday!!

23 Happyg { 10.08.15 at 12:36 am }

We are going to be at disney oct 25- 28 (oct 25 arriving around 2 and oct 28 leaving around 2). Plan is oct 25 pm hollywood studios and oct 26 mk and oct 27 tues mk and Oct 28 AK. I know that these are. Usirr times for the places selected but we dont have park hopper and dont need full day at hs or ak…will thia trip be super crowded all around if we flow this itinerary? Any suggestions (oct 26 is the only night MK open latw…we have a 6 year old so he wouldnt be out late but my husband and I might try). What are your thoughts? Thx!!

24 Dave { 10.08.15 at 7:53 am }

Happyg, where are you staying? Weds will be rough at AK unless you are staying at a hotel that does Extra Magic Hours. Use a good itinerary (and get your FastPass+ ASAP) and you can have a good trip otherwise. You can find good approaches to the parks in Chapter 6 of my book.

25 Happyg { 10.09.15 at 8:02 pm }

hanks for your response. We are staying at the Contemporary Garden Wing. Should I get FP for AK on Weds? We were at Disney a year and a half ago so this time, its just a quick trip.. but it seems like it is a busy week there (when I thought it would not be). So, not sure what I could switch up… I know HS is rec’d for Monday, but we really do not need that whole day there… will it be awful on Sunday (got FP for Toy Story, Star Tours and LM… we don’t want to do TT or RR), and want to see the Indiana Jones Show, and Lights etc.. if possible… and Fantasmic.
Will we need FP for AK on Weds if we only want Kilimanjaro Safari, Kali River Rapids (no Dinosuar or Expedition Everest)?

26 Happyg { 10.08.15 at 11:18 am }

Thanks for your response. We are staying at the Contemporary Garden Wing. Should I get FP for AK on Weds? We were at Disney a year and a half ago so this time, its just a quick trip.. but it seems like it is a busy week there (when I thought it would not be). So, not sure what I could switch up… I know HS is rec’d for Monday, but we really do not need that whole day there… will it be awful on Sunday (got FP for Toy Story, Star Tours and LM… we don’t want to do TT or RR), and want to see the Indiana Jones Show, and Lights etc.. if possible… and Fantasmic.
Will we need FP for AK on Weds if we only want Kilimanjaro Safari, Kali River Rapids (no Dinosuar or Expedition Everest)?

27 Dave { 10.10.15 at 9:49 am }

Happyg, with your FP+ and your lack of interest in TT and RR, you should be OK at HS. At AK, depending on the weather Kali may build long lines.

28 Happyg { 10.10.15 at 7:36 pm }

Thank you!! As of now i have fp for mk in case of bad weather for weds. If weather looks good perhaps nite before i can get fp… thx again!!

29 mike { 10.14.15 at 3:21 pm }

Hello Dave, our trip to the MK on Nov. 10 has the Christmas Parade taping. how crowded is it and how bad will it get ? Is there any good news with this surprise thrown at us. Thanks

30 Dave { 10.14.15 at 5:08 pm }
31 mike { 10.15.15 at 11:56 am }

Thanks Dave, don,t know if its a good thing or not. Thank You

32 Virginia { 10.20.15 at 5:03 pm }

My family of four has tickets to MNSSHP on Oct 31 with an ADR at BOG for 4:05pm. I have read that we will be able to enter the park at 4 o’clock. If I send my husband ahead of us will they still honor our reservation if he is possibly 15 minutes late?

33 Nick { 12.15.15 at 4:54 pm }

First Timers heading to Disney next week, with girls 8 and 5. We have 1-day tickets to Magic Kingdom, but might add a 2nd day. Do you recommend Sunday. Monday, or doesn’t matter as it will be crazy busy either way? Thanks!

34 Dave { 12.17.15 at 7:53 am }

Nick, it doesn’t much matter, but Sunday is a little better choice.

35 Chris { 01.02.16 at 7:41 am }

Dave,
I plan to be in Disney with family the following days. What parks should I avoid?
4.16.16-4.21.16

Thanks,
Chris

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