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Tips for Dealing with Disney World Crowds

With the holidays quickly approaching, many families are planning a visit to Orlando to celebrate. Just like the summer months, the winter season is busy in Central Florida. Disney World fully embraces the magic of Christmas and each park presents festive ways to make your holiday vacation a memorable one. Even with the throngs of people, it’s possible to enjoy the parks if you follow these helpful tips for dealing with Disney World crowds.

Disney Copyright Family MK

Have a Plan
To make the most of your time, especially when crowds are involved, be sure to have a plan. Know what you want to do, what you can skip and try to avoid those people clogging sidewalks with a “What do we do now?” conference. With My Disney Experience, you can reserve FastPass+, dining and other activities up to 180 days in advance. Believe me when I say, being able to skip lines and eat without a wait will save your nerves you think they can’t be stepped on one more time before you lose it.

Disney PRINCESS_V5[2]Pack your Patience
Speaking of losing it—try not to! Pack your patience because no matter what you do you will still have to deal with throngs of people. Help keep Disney World Orlando the magical place on earth by keeping kindness at the forefront of your day, too. You’d be surprised how far a smile and a thank you will get you.

Embrace the Crazy
Instead of bemoaning your day at Disney because it’s not exactly like world depicted on commercials, embrace the crazy. There’s plenty of charm to be found in the crowds, as it kind of feels like you’re celebrating the holidays with thousands of your newest friends. Plus, you might think an empty park would be more enjoyable but really it’s rather boring. The mix and mingle of the crowds actually adds a bit of excitement as it feels like you’re part of something truly magical.

0918ZY_0886CG_RSZUpgrade Your Options
One surefire way to avoid the biggest crowds is by taking advantage of Extra Magic Hours offered to Disney Resort guests. The ability to arrive an hour early, or stay on hour later, than general Disney theme parks guests means you’ll have more of the park to yourself before the masses really start to pile in. If you’re staying at an off-property hotel, it still pays off to arrive early as crowds don’t really begin until late morning (10am).

Remember…It’s Vacation!
My Dad always says a day on the lake is better than any day at work. The same holds true for a day at a Disney World Theme Park. No matter how busy it is, I always walk away with a smile on my face and am happy to have got my Disney fix. As with any day, it is what you make it. And at Disney World, you can make it a really great one if you want to. Take a deep breath, relax and enjoy your vacation!

Do you have any tips to handling Disney World crowds? Tell me about them in the comments.


Ashley is Reserve Direct’s travel expert, visiting Orlando to find the best travel tips, money-saving deals and insider information. With over 10 years of experience in first-hand-travel adventures, she shares her stories, advice, and current events to help you stay in the know.
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