134 responses

  1. Marie
    March 8, 2019

    Dave, patiently waiting your new predictions now that Galaxy’s Edge is opening EARLY.
    Our trip is 9/14/19….. I thought we were safe from the mayhem

    Reply

  2. Sarah
    February 27, 2019

    How much less crowded will the week of Nov. 16 be compared to Nov. 2, 2019?

    Reply

    • Dave
      February 28, 2019

      Hi Sarah, if Star Wars has not opened yet by either date, the week of the 16th will be more comfortable–but either week will require a good plan, and with a good plan either is quite do-able

      Reply

  3. Heather
    January 25, 2019

    First, thank you! It is evident that you love Disney by all the information and hard work you have done to provide such an amazing website for the rest of us to learn from. Secondly, I would greatly appreciate your opinions, concerns, and recommendation on which of the following dates would be best for my family’s WDW trip!

    My family is looking to take our first trip to Disney World. I am having a difficult time making a final decision. I have read your website through and through as well as several others. I have narrowed our trip down to 3 different times to go. I have already looked at room reservations and they are currently available for these times. My priorities are avoiding high temperatures (into the 90s) and avoiding the crowds. However, I am still thinking about hurricane season, swimming weather, and missing out on reservations for shows.

    Some info that I think may impact your recommendation. My husband and I have twin boys, currently 5 years old and they will be 6 in September of this year. They are both under 44’ inches so no “big” rides for them this trip. On this trip to WDW we would like to go to Magic Kingdom, The Animal Kingdom, Hollywood Studios and Epcot. We most likely will return when they are about 10 to do the “big” rides, to do EVERYTHING Star Wars at WDW, as well as add Universal Studios to the trip. My husband is in the military and so this year we will buy the Armed Forces Salute 4-day Park Hopper tickets and plan to stay at Shades of Green for 6 nights/7 days. (The dates below are still available at Shades of Green.)

    My dates of consideration are the following.

    1. May 13- May 24:
    Pro: I have read that this time frame would provide low crowds. And would avoid the Memorial Day Crowd.
    Con: The temperature is high 80s and creeping into the 90s. It may be too late to reserve shows like Hoop-Dee-Doo Musical Revue (my twins LOVE cowboys) or a character meal.

    2. September (anytime):
    Pro: Low crowds as children are back in school. I have time to reserve shows and meals. My twins birthday is September 24th and they could celebrate their 6th birthday at Disney.
    Con: The temperature is still in the high 80s and low 90s. It is hurricane season so, a hurricane could throw a wrench into our WDW plans.

    3. November 2-23:
    Pro: Low crowds. The temperature is no longer in or creeping into the 90s. Time to reserve shows and meals.
    Con: The temperature may be too low for the children to enjoy going to the pool (which they love). The Star Wars land could open and as I have read, create much larger crowds than typical at that time. YIKES! (hmmm…is it worth the RISK of the pro; typical low crowds suddenly becoming a con; HIGH crowd levels?)

    Reply

    • Dave
      January 25, 2019

      Hi Heather! First you have done a great job at identifying the pros and cons, and all are legit.

      A couple of further points in response:

      Re May, an advantage vs Sept is that (especially during your earlier dates) humidity may be low. There is typically a point in May when Orlando shifts from the dry to the wet season, adding both humidity and rain, which is not perfectly forecastable but typically happens later in the month rather than earlier.

      Also on May, you can check dining availability this second–and book it. You don’t need a hotel or tickets to do that. I tested Hoop Dee Doo and for example it’s available for 4 folks on May 15 and May 16–that’s all I checked, other dates may be available as well. For Hoop you have to pre-pay, and others require either a pre-pay or a credit card number so that you can be charged a non-show penalty. But you can book, and then cancel if you pick another date, and your no show will be waived and your pre-payments refunded. Here’s a link to the hoop reservation page: https://disneyworld.disney.go.com/dining/cabins-at-fort-wilderness-resort/hoop-dee-doo-musical-revue/

      On Sept, the heat and humidity are real, and while the risk of hurricanes is low, you need to think about refundability. The tickets are not refundable–you can use them at a later eligible date if that works for you folks, but you can’t get your money back. See http://www.militarydisneytips.com/Disney-Armed-Forces-Salute.html#themepark Shades has a thirty day canellation policy–if you cancel closer to your dates, you may lose your deposit. See http://www.militarydisneytips.com/Shades-of-Green/Shades-of-Green-Roomrates.html. You would want to look into trip insurance, especially if you are flying, but I don’t know if it would cover the tix/deposit.

      On November–my experience with kids that young is that they will swim if the pool is open, no matter the weather, and typically the pools are only closed for thunderstorms or severe (and unlikely then) cold snaps. You and your husband may be miserable!! The Galaxy’s Edge issue is real. My forecast is that it will only overwhelm the rides at HS that yours are too young for anyway. But I might be wrong. My general advice to people is that if they are worried to avoid these dates.

      One semi-final note–for kids the ages of your boys on a four day ticket, I would not spend a day at each park. Rather, I’d spend two days at MK and skip one of the others. Epcot on average has the least appeal for kids that age, but if you pick November, it might be prudent to skip HS.

      Finally, my advice would be May–and the earlier the better–even if you need to miss a priority meal or two.

      Reply

  4. Tricia
    January 22, 2019

    We are planning a Disney/Universal trip for (potentially) November 16-23 2019. I’m thinking that this is looking like a good time weather and crowd wise from what I’ve read (correct?).
    My concern is the Star Wars opening. We do not plan to go to Hollywood Studios but I’m worried how this may impact the rest. When will the opening date be announced?

    Reply

    • Dave
      January 23, 2019

      Tricia, nobody knows. My thoughts on the opening are here, but recently rumors have been rampant that DIsney World is aiming for an October opening.

      If Star Wars troubles you, I would plan for a visit earlier in October, or in later April (4/18 or later) or May 2020.

      Reply

  5. Cindy
    January 12, 2019

    Hello,
    Sorry if this has already been asked, cant see all the comments. When does the next years list of best weeks come out? (2020)

    Reply

    • Dave
      January 13, 2019

      Cindy, my draft will come out probably next Sunday, and if not then, soon thereafter.

      Reply

  6. Amy
    January 9, 2019

    We are wanting to take a trip in the next year during a low crowd time. We were looking at Nov 15-20 to see Christmas decorations (first time) or Feb 2020. Is it usually crowded the days before Thanksgiving? I am getting mixed reviews on that. Or if we are worried about crowds should we stick to Feb 2020?

    Reply

    • Dave
      January 10, 2019

      Hi Amy, crowds are usually OK until the Sunday before Thanksgiving, so you should be OK. Not all the Xmas program will be in place those dates.

      Reply

  7. Richard
    January 6, 2019

    Hi Dave. Booked our trip to Wdw back in April…. was grateful for the info you provided then.
    It would appear that things have changed regarding busy weeks etc
    We are going for two weeks from 25th Feb… I was sure that, in April, these were pretty good weeks to go.
    I note that now the second of these weeks would appear to project as being very busy. Just wondering
    What’s changed?

    Reply

    • Dave
      January 7, 2019

      Hey Richard, every summer, after the full set of school year calendars is out, I update my crowd calendar for the upcoming year based on both that and on apparent trends. As noted here there’s been longer waits the first week of MArch the past couple of years, so I bumped up the crowd forecast for that week (the week beginning March 2, 2019) which led to that week being downgraded in the wek rankings.

      That said, since the introduction of FastPass+, most weeks of the year having a good plan and avoiding the “bad day” parks is much more important than the specific crowd level!!!

      Reply

      • Anonymous
        January 7, 2019

        Thank you Dave
        I think I should be ok…. looks as though the second weekend around 9 and 10 March will be busiest of the whole holiday.
        Will have a plan in place and FPs complete
        Cheers

        Reply

      • Dave
        January 9, 2019

        Great!!

        Reply

  8. Jessa Cintron
    January 4, 2019

    Hi Dave,
    I was wondering if you have any changes to this now based on the free dining promotion early release? We are looking at 11/3/19-11/9/19 or 12/01/19-12/07/19 but would love your feedback before we decide.

    Reply

    • Dave
      January 5, 2019

      Hi Jessa, no–no changes!

      Reply

  9. Jackie
    January 4, 2019

    Hi Dave,
    Will you please update us when/if you notice any evidence that WDW is possibly repeating the adjusted staffing levels vs. ride capacity issue that they experimented with last January and February (which seemed to cause increased wait times)? We’re a bit nervous about potential wait times for our upcoming trip the first week of February.
    Thanks so much!

    Reply

    • Dave
      January 5, 2019

      Hi Jackie, I will, but a good plan will make such changes–if they happen– barely noticeable.

      Reply

  10. Laura
    November 1, 2018

    Hi Dave, I am looking to return to DW for our 3rd and final time in 2020. (Pushed back from “late fall” due to Star Wars opening). We plan on doing Disney and Universal. We want to see Star Wars. We’ve have gone at low crowd times previously for 5-6 days. We plan on doing a full week this time. Question is… looking at presidents week winter break in February or right when we get out for summer vacation (June 13ish). Would you recommend one over the other regarding crowds, cost and Staw Wars chaos? Thank you.

    Reply

    • Dave
      November 1, 2018

      It’s a toss-up, Laura, so I’d pick based on weather and when you really need a break. Enough people are out of school Presidents week that I expect Star Wars to be mobbed then…but the hype will still apply to visits the summer of 2020 for folks who can’t go other than during their summer breaks…

      Reply

  11. Kelly B – Destinations in Florida
    October 15, 2018

    Hi Reese,

    I’m Kelly from Destinations In Florida. I would love to help you plan your upcoming vacation. If you could contact me at KellyB@DestinationInFlorida.com or 980-429-4499. We’ll start planning that magical vacation right away.

    Reply

  12. Reese
    October 13, 2018

    A package for a family of 8 in November / Thanksgiving Holiday 2019

    Reply

    • Dave
      October 15, 2018

      Hi Reese, are you looking for help from Kelly? If so, fill out the form here.

      Reply

  13. Lee B
    October 11, 2018

    Hi Dave! If that has been addressed before let me apologize first . I was wondering why Pop Warner week is a more favorable week than Dec 7. I have concerns of it being more crowded due to being right after TG as well as the all the cheer crowds etc. especially if they offer free dining again. We are planning 10 days. What are your thoughts?

    Reply

    • Dave
      October 12, 2018

      Hi Lee, the difference between the weeks is indeed slight. Those who track numbers, like me, know that Pop Warner has much less impact than many think it does–see this, and free dining is almost never offered during Pop Warner week. I give the week of the 30th the nod over the week of the 7th because those staying the whole 8 nights I recommend will pay higher prices at the end of the week of the 7th.

      Reply

  14. Dana
    October 10, 2018

    The week of February 23rd you have listed at #10. Will the Princess Run make the crowds bigger at the parks?

    Reply

    • Dave
      October 11, 2018

      Dana, it never has before.

      Reply

  15. Maria
    October 4, 2018

    Thanks for the prompt response! That link was exactly what I was looking for.

    Reply

  16. Load More Comments…

Leave a Reply

 

 

 

My response to questions and comments will be on the same page as the original comment, likely within 24-36 hours . . . I reserve the right to edit and delete comments as I choose . . . All rights reserved. Copyright 2008-2019 . . . Unless otherwise noted, all photos are by me--even the ones in focus--except for half a dozen from my niecelets . . . This site is entirely unofficial and not authorized by any organizations written about in it . . . All references to Disney and other copyrighted characters, trademarks, marks, etc., are made solely for editorial purposes. The author makes no commercial claim to their use . . . Nobody's perfect, so follow any advice here at your own risk.

Back to top
mobile desktop