View Full Version : Crowd Theory
05-16-2012, 03:28 PM
Reading others' posts about current crowds have me thinking.
I have a bit of a crowd theory....I'd be interested to know what you experts think....
Sometimes, I find the crowds on moderate days to feel as bad as heavy days. Reason being that even though there may be fewer people in the park, rides are not running at full capacity. For example: Casey Junior is only running one train, making the line move at a snail's pace. Do other rides modify their ride capacity when smaller crowds are predicted? Making lines as long as a heavy day? Which ones? Would love to hear other thoughts on this....:)
05-16-2012, 03:29 PM
You are correct in your theory.. Hydroguy detailed it in one of his "super"threads here: http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?p=18462889
05-16-2012, 04:29 PM
Yeah; it's sort of like going to a restaurant when they aren't very busy and it taking longer than when they ARE busy because they don't have the staff etc. that they do during busy times.
05-16-2012, 04:41 PM
Yes! We were there on Monday, May 7th- a predicted crowd level of 1 out of 10. First of all, the line to get in at opening was longer than any peak day we'd been to due to less turnstiles open. Second, there were no fast passes being distributed for most of the day! Really threw us off. Had a crazy long wait for Jungle Cruise and It's a Small World- rides we usually have a 5-10 min wait for even on busy days. We did "walk-on" Space, but it literally took us 5 minutes to walk through the empty stand-by queue that zigzagged all over tarnation. Our conclusion, was that we weren't going to worry about crowd levels on future trips. We had been there during Spring Break in early April when crowd levels were at an 8, and there really wasn't a huge difference in our wait times because we could utilize fast pass.
05-16-2012, 05:11 PM
I don't know. I have been going to DL about 3-4 times a year for the last 10 years. I have been there when it is really crowded (crowd levels documented at 10) and not that crowded (more of a level of 4-5). I can tell you that there is a HUGE difference as far as crowd levels between those two catagories! For example, 2 years ago we went the few days prior to Thanksgiving, and it was beyond my wildest dreams crowded. Not just wait times (which of course were terrible), but just getting from point A to point B. Waiting in line for hot chocolate took an hour, and the corn dog line wrapped around the park. On that trip they closed the gates a few times due to crowds being at capacity. Then there is the just regular crowded times--like summer crowds. I know to expect these and just pretty much bring my patience with me. These are crowds of 9-10, but I am use to them. Then, I have been there on very low crowd days (we went in Feb. and Oct. of this year, and both times were great as far as crowds go!). To me, not crowded means that I can actually see down Main Street, walk around freely, and only wait about 5 minutes for a corn dog or churro. The crowd levels on these days are 4-5. To me, that is just heavenly!
So I don't really get it when people complain about crowds when the crowd level is under a 6. To me, this means something else is going on---like they are just frustrated with their trip or have had enough Disneylanding. It happens to the best of us!:)
05-16-2012, 05:13 PM
I've only been at low-moderate times and extremely busy times, ie X-mas-New Years, and coming up Carsland opening weekend!
I still prefer the low-moderate, even if my potential wait times were shorter in the very busy times because even though I hate waiting in lines, I hate being elbowed in crowds more. I love wandering through the parks and strolling and not having to navigate through a crowd of people. Something about the press of humanity is kind of bothersome during 8-10 days, although we did have some great random encounters during those times with strangers, I really rather enjoy the time where my party and I can walk elbow to elbow between attractions as a group of 4-6 without feeling like we're getting in anybody's way or going too slow or too fast.
Though, btw, I do sympathize that you went during a very low time and they decided not to staff enough to give you a decently short wait time. I'd be frustrated at that fact at Disney. We haven't really had that issue on our Sept-Oct-Nov trips, all FP machines have been up, etc. And we just 'duck' under the zigzagging ques at Space Mtn if nobody is standing in them.
05-16-2012, 06:19 PM
To some degree, you are correct.
On a busy summer day, Disneyland will have all tracks open on Autopia, for example. However, on a slower day, they may only have two tracks open.
Guests see a 20 minute wait and wonder why the additional tracks are not open. DLR sees 20 minute wait with two tracks running and thinks the Park is running with reasonable wait times and appropriate staffing. The goal (if you are running an operation) is reasonable expediting, while balancing expense (labor).
However, when the massive crowds hit and DLR staffs to the maximum (4 tracks open in our example) and there is a 60 minutes wait, they have done all that they can do, are running at maximum staffing for maximum expediting, but the volume of guests is such that the lines grow.
These two crowd types have occurred often on my visits.
1: Main Street, walkways, stores all empty, ride lines packed at 60+ minutes.
2: Main Street, walkways, stores all packed, ride lines walk on.
05-16-2012, 07:33 PM
We're going to be there from May 30-June 6, but I don't know where to locate the expected crowd levels for that time? Are you looking at Touring Plans? Because I purchased a subscription to this, but it doesn't seem accurate. It says crowd levels for my week are between 3 and 5, but it says the SAME THING for June 15 and the week after, which is when Carsland opens. I can't imagine that can be true!
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