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Hurricane Season in Florida

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“Hi, My family and I are from California and we’re planning to visit WDW in early September 2018, recently we’ve heard that is peak hurricane season in Florida. Is that something we should be worried about? Any advice would be great.”

Scary looking clouds over Cinderella Castle during Hurricane season at Walt Disney World

Hurricanes can be scary, kind of like these clouds – Photo by Wayne Wood

Obviously, hurricanes happen at Walt Disney World. We just found that out this last weekend with Irma. Yes. Hurricanes do come. Yes. September and October are prime hurricane season.

What does that really mean? Let me put it in terms you might understand, being from California. It’s like saying, “February and March are mudslide season.” That’s when the rains come. That’s when the mudslides happen. But, do they happen every year? Not always. Same thing with hurricanes.

Irma was the first hurricane in 12 years, to actually make landfall in Florida. Matthew last year, scraped the coast of Florida but didn’t actually come ashore in Florida. So hurricanes don’t happen all that regularly.

Next month Walt Disney World turns 46 years old. And, in that 46 years, Disney World has been closed five times for Hurricanes. And a couple of them, they only closed for part of a day. So, it doesn’t happen all the time. You’ve got a one in nine, one in 10 chance of a year being effected by a hurricane. And, you don’t go back before last year, it was even worse odds, ’cause it’s two years in a row that they’ve closed due to a hurricane.

So, before last year, it was three in 45 years. So, it’s one every 15 years. So, the chances of it actually hitting Orlando, yeah, it could but, the pattern, the historical pattern tells you that it’s not very likely.

Would I worry about it? No. Right now, no. I would plan a trip next year, in September. Absolutely. I wouldn’t think another thing about it. ‘Cause the chances just are, well… They’re just not that great.

Could another hurricane hit Florida next year? Sure. But Florida’s a big state. Not all hurricanes that hit Florida impact Orlando. Irma just happened to be the worst case scenario. We really haven’t seen that kind of track before in Florida.

Destinations to Travel

Dad’s Bottom Line

So, the bottom line is, do hurricanes happen? Is September and October hurricane season? Absolutely. Is that something to worry about? Not at all. The chances are not real good that it will happen next year.


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Comments for

Jul 12, 2019 Disney world during hurricane season is the best!
by: Anonymous

We stayed in Disney world during hurricane Irma in 2017 and it was quite honestly the best decision we made. Parks were empty on the lead up to the hurricane, Disney property was fantastic and it hit when we were all sleeping. It didn’t even wake us up! The next day the parks were closed but the hotel did a excellent job keeping the young ones entertained! All in all a great experience. We have rebooked for this September to stay at the exact same time on Disney property!

Sep 07, 2018 Hurricane Irma
by: Kristina

We were in WDW for Hurricane Irma last year. We were staying at Saratoga Springs and chose to leave before land fall. I contacted the front desk about 4 days prior and received no help. Being a Midwesterner I had no experience with hurricanes and was seeking guidance.

Our flight was cancelled and we had already been there for a week so I didn’t know whether to stay or try to drive home and if we stayed if we were guaranteed a room or how much it would cost. Until we ultimately made the choice to rent a car and drive home, we had no help.

The day I checked out which was 1 day before the hurricane reached Orlando, Disney had representatives in the lobby to assist. We really could have used some help days before!! I later called to get help with our refund and I mentioned this and they said messages were left on our hotel phone. I guess next time we will check the phone! Considering a hurricane shutdown Disney the year before, I expected a little more preparedness or communication.

Mar 10, 2018 We’re gonna try it!
by: Anonymous

We love visiting WDW, even though we no longer have any kids living at home full-time. In order to quench our WDW thirst on a budget throughout the years, we have always stayed off property.

I have two things to say. First, we will be staying on property for the first time in September 2018. We are taking a chance, but the prices are enticing. If the forecast is dismal, we can still cancel a couple weeks out. Second, I agree with the previous comment about visiting during Thanksgiving/Christmas.

The best time is the two weeks right after Thanksgiving. We were there in 2017 during that time frame and the weather was a perfect upper-70’s to 80 degrees. The decorations and music throughout the properties are simply magical! We will continue to visit during that time every other year and again in the Spring, if the budget permits.

Jan 02, 2018 hurricanes
by: Anonymous

I was at Disneyworld for IRMA. We had a 7 day trip planned from september 2nd until the 9th. The news kept us on edge and kind of ruined the mood. By mid week our flight was cancelled and we ended up having to leave early and drive to Nashville to get a cheap flight. Its not worth it. I look back at the trip and it makes me sad. I was so excited for it and it was ruined. I recommend going in December before the holidays start(early) or in March/April. Just because September is cheaper does not mean it is better.

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