2017 CROWDS AT WALT DISNEY WORLD
The chart lower on the page shows my forecasts for 2017 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 2018 Disney World crowds, see this, and for 2019 crowds at Disney World, see this.)
Crowd levels are ranked by week from 1-11 in the following way:
1: Lowest of the year
HOW TO INTERPRET THE 2017 DISNEY WORLD CROWD CALENDAR
Dates are the beginning of the week.
As is the case in every good Disney World crowd calendar, the forecasts are about wait times on rides–not about how crowded the areas outside the rides might be.
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 often best avoided by first timers who may never return because they are in the peak hurricane or the ride closure seasons.
The “moderate crowd” weeks–those in black and rated 5-7–have crowd levels I would not particularly recommend to first time visitors, though the crowds can be managed with careful planning. 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.”
Follow yourfirstvisit.net on Facebook or Google+ or Twitter or Pinterest!!
Dave – You saved our trip! I can’t find my Dec. 19 post, but I asked you for your thoughts on our itinerary. (MK Dec. 21, AK Dec. 22, HS Dec. 23, MK Dec. 25, & EPCOT Dec. 26). You suggested we flip our last two days and go to EPCOT on Dec. 25 & MK on Dec. 26. Boy, were you right! It made all the difference in the world. The crowd at EPCOT on Christmas day was finee, and we were able to do everything we wanted to do, while MK stopped admitting new guests at noon that day. Also, bookending our trip with MK was a great idea. The crowd difference between Dec. 21 at MK and Dec. 26 at MK was huge. We had done everything we wanted at MK on Dec. 21, so everything we got to do on Dec. 26 was gravy. We stayed for the fireworks that night, and they were amazking! Your book suggested not getting the park hopper, and that was a great idea. We didn’t have time to park-hop, & it saved us hundreds of dollars. Thank you so much for your advice!
Cynthia, so glad to have helped!! BTW a five-star review of the book on Amazon would always be welcome 🙂
Hi! Great site! I’m wondering what the crowd levels are over thanksgiving and black friday days? this year it is November 24 and 25?
Andrius, it’s pretty heavy most years, so I’d expect the same this year.
We normally go early in the summer but this year are planning for the week of 8/20 and hoping for lower crowds. Thoughts?
Jeff, the differences will be more heat and humidity, a (slight) increase in hurricane chances, but better crowds.
I was hoping you could help chose the best Friday in September for MNSSHP? Me and my friend really want to go this year and I was wondering when the crowds will be the lightest?
Kallie, the earlier in the month, the better.
Hi! Love this site- so many great tips! I will be traveling with my family during 4th of July week :/ What should I prepare myself for? How long do you think the wait times will be like?
Dani, a good plan and judicious pre-booked FastPass+ will help a lot. See this for how to think about FastPass+, and this (and its daily links) for an example of a good plan
Random question…if i buy Disney gift cards at BJ’s wholesale club and use them to pay for dinner at Table service restaurants, will i be able to put the tip on them as well or will i have to use cash for the tip?
Donna, you can use the gift card–see this.
Now that the holiday party schedule is out, wondering if you would recommend going to MK on a party day and also purchasing tickets and staying that night for the party? We only have one day to be at MK this trip and are looking at Sunday, Nov. 26. How will the crowds be the Sunday after Thanksgiving? Thanks!
Jen, that will make for a long and expensive day. It might be easier to spend the morning at a park you have less interest in, take a break and then go to the party, saving another full day for MK. Either way, a mid-day break for a nap will help people stay up. Crowds that Sunday will be just fine!
My family (3 adults 2 children 11 & 6) will be traveling to Florida May 27-June 2. We want To spend one day at Magic Kingdom and one maybe two days at Universal Studios. Can you recommend the best days to go?
Dominique, the best Magic Kingdom days will be May 30 and June 1.
Looking to go the week before Thanksgiving to see it decorated for Christmas! What’s your opinion on the crowds? I have been mid-June, October, & the March before.
Amber, as the chart notes this is a lower-crowd week.
Our family of 8 have recently booked for the last 2 weeks in October, do you know what the crowds will be like. We will be taking 4 children ages are 10, 6, 2 and 3months (yes we are mental) so would like to plan ours days to avoid large crowds.
Thanks in advance
Hi Sarah! How many days to you mean to spend in each park (see this for help if you don’t know).
Hi, I love your site! We were planning to go to Disney the week of Thanksgiving only because we are trying to have our son miss as little school as possible. We have been to Disney three times before. All three times, we went mid-November and loved the weather and, what seemed to be, low crowds. What is your honest opinion of going Thanksgiving week?