The Best Time to Visit Disney World
One of the most asked questions I see is "when is the best time to visit Disney World?"
"And the answer is..."
What fun would it be if I told you the answer right off the bat. I'm going to save that for a little later.
There are some pretty Simple things to look at when trying to choose the Perfect Time to go to WDW. Those Simple things are Crowds, Events, Weather and Prices.
Pretty Simple right? This is going to be Fun, and maybe even Magic.
Let's start with...
Crowds at WDW
The crowds at Walt Disney World are legendary. Over 50,000,000 people visit WDW every year. When you're trying to choose the best time to visit Disney World, you need to know something about the crowds. That's pretty basic.
If you want to miss all of the crowds at Disney World, you will want to visit when the schools in the United States are in session. Usually the last week in January and the first week or two of February have the smallest crowds. September is another month will small crowds.
If you have to go when school is out, that's OK. Just know that you will have to deal with bigger crowds. Dad can help with that too.
Dad's 2016 WDW Crowd Calendars
Dad's Disney World Crowds page tell you all you need about dealing with Disney World Crowds. There are tips, advice and even Dad's Legendary Disney World Crowd Calendars.
Walt Disney World Events
The biggest thing that separates Walt Disney World from other theme parks (or at least one of the biggest things) is the incredible events that Disney puts on.
From the January 1 celebration of the New Year all the way through Christmas at WDW, there's almost always something special going on.
Dad's favorite time to visit WDW is during the Christmas season. There is always at least one week from Christmas on Dad's top 5 weeks to visit Disney World list.
But there are other great events to check out during the year. Here are the "biggies".
- Epcot's Flower and Garden and Food and Wine Festivals
- Sounds Like Summer Concerts
- runDisney Events
- Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party
Disney events are really, really special.
Weather may not be a big factor when you are choosing the best time to visit Disney World. There are a few things you should know.
Orlando (home of Walt Disney World), is in the smack dab middle of the state of Florida. Duh Dad. Tell us something we can't see on any map.
OK, did you know this. Orlando has tornadoes, hurricanes, droughts, famine, pestilence, fire and brimstone, people turning to dust in the streets... (No Dad, you're supposed to talk about Orlando, not Oklahoma.)
Oops, sorry. Back to Orlando.
Florida can have some funky weather and Orlando is kind of in the middle of all the funk. We've experienced freezing cold and foot burning heat on our trips. The humidity can be brutal.
Rain? Yes, it rains in Orlando. A lot. The rainy season starts January 1 and ends December 31. (Not really but it seems that way.) Rain can be a factor, but it can also be Fun. Check out the Rainy Day Cavalcade special parade picture above. Rain usually means smaller crowds, so grab a poncho and soldier on.
Summers are hot and muggy, winters are typically really nice but can get downright cold for a couple of days. Yes, there are hurricanes, but they rarely affect Walt Disney World. Only 2 have impacted operations in over 40 years.
To see all you need to know about the weather for your visit check out...
Walt Disney World Prices
"How much does it cost, I'll buy it..."
Probably the most important question to look at when picking the best time to visit Disney World is what is it going to cost?
WDW prices are all over the board. Hotel prices can change hundreds of dollars from one day to the next. Disney is even contemplating charging more for tickets depending on the crowds.
Even with all of that, Disney Prices are pretty Simple to figure out. The bigger the crowds, the higher the prices. Simple.
Christmas Week is the most expensive week of the year. September is probably the cheapest (usually the best discounts are in September). Weekends cost more than weekdays. Summer is not the time to save money.
It can be a lot of work to figure out the best time to visit WDW based on prices. I always recommend (and use) a good Disney Travel Agent when I'm doing my planning and booking. A good Disney Travel Agent will know the best dates and times and how to choose the best dates to save the most money.
Dad's Disney World Travel Agent is Destinations to Travel. I use them every trip and talk to them just about every day. I highly recommend you give them a shout and let them help you get started.
Of course, you could always go to Disney's web site and do the trial and error thing. That works, and sometimes you can find what your looking for, but it also can be a lot of work.
Resources to help
A lot of people talk about the best time to visit Disney World. Some of them even have some helpful advice.
Dad proudly recommends several resources as you try to choose.
- Touringplans.com - Dad highly recommends using Touringplans when you plan your trips. They have the best park by park crowd information available.
- WDW Magazine - Dad is the Publisher of WDW Magazine so every year he creates a crowds/best time to visit WDW issue. You've got to see these. They are great.
- YourFirstVisit.net - Dave is one of Dad's good Disney friends who has a great resource for first time visitors to help with planning.
Dad's Bottom Line - The real answer
So after we've looked at all the variables, what do you think "The Answer Is?"
Anytime you can
That's the correct answer, you are the new Jeopardy Champion.
And there was much rejoicing. Yeah.