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Old 01-31-2013, 10:53 AM   #1
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Join Date: Oct 2012
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Thanksgiving 2013

Hello everyone! We will be at WDW from 17th November until 8th December and I would like some advice about the week of Thanksgiving. I have read that the parks start getting busy from the Wednesday (day before Thanksgiving) and are insanely busy until the afternoon of the Sunday after Thanksgiving. With this being our first family holiday and my husbands first ever time at WDW I am happy to make Thanksgiving and the Friday, Saturday and Sunday non park days (although I think we will check out a park on Sunday afternoon to see if its manageable or not with the stroller) What I would like are some suggestions for these days please. For example, would Thanksgiving day be a good day to do some resort hopping? Should I book our Cirque Du Soleil tickets for one of those days? Will Downtown Disney and Disney Quest be busy over these days? Would Animal Kingdom be quieter and a possible park option for us with the stroller? I know in reality it will be a case of being there and checking things out but even just the tiniest heads up would be greatly appreciated. After it taking me nearly 2 years to convince my hubby to come to WDW, I am not wanting him to be put off returning by running into huge crowds and as much as we would happily relax in the resort on these days, I do not think our 3 year old princess would be up for that! (after going in March last year at only just over 2 years of age she still asks me when we are going back on 'the pirate ship', 'Jasmine flying carpets' and 'the tree face boat ride' (Maelstrom ride) in Florida again!!) I guess I am looking for suggestions of things to do that will keep her amused and keep him away from massive crowds (he gets 'the panic' in overcrowded places) on these days. Thanks for reading my 'wall of text' and any suggestions will be most appreciated! xx
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Old 01-31-2013, 11:30 AM   #2
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Aw! Well hopefully your husband gets a little used to the crowds before that day. Honestly I'd just keep it cheery, don't stress getting to rides or reservations too much or else he might get a little worked up throughout the trip

Thanksgiving day I'd go to Epcot AT ROPE DROP. Check out the front of the park and then at 11 when world showcase opens just go around once or twice, maybe try a few snacks. Once it gets crowded go back to your hotel for a swim and a change of clothes if needed? Once you're all relaxed and refreshed go hotel hopping! Maybe have dinner at one of them and then go to Cirque du Soleil?
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Old 01-31-2013, 11:45 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by smallblackstars View Post
Hello everyone! We will be at WDW from 17th November until 8th December and I would like some advice about the week of Thanksgiving. I have read that the parks start getting busy from the Wednesday (day before Thanksgiving) and are insanely busy until the afternoon of the Sunday after Thanksgiving.
It certainly can be, but the weather can have a big impact in my experience and November weather in Orlando is unpredictable. We were there a few years ago, for example, and Thanksgiving Day in Epcot was one of the busiest days I have ever seen in any Disney park (and if you look at my sig you can see we've been at many peak times). But it was 85 degrees and beautiful that day and after a cold front came through on Friday and temperatures dropped into the 40s, DHS on Saturday was about as empty as I've ever seen a Disney park. The only line we saw all day was for hot chocolate.

My best advice for anyone traveling at Thanksgiving or any other peak-peak time is to get to the parks when they open. You should have no problem doing just about everything you want to do (maybe excluding parades and shows) in the first 2-3 hours if you have a plan (and it doesn't have to be a minute-by-minute commando plan) and use FP wisely. By 11 a.m. things are going to be crowded if the weather is nice and you can figure out if you want to stay or go at that time.
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Old 01-31-2013, 12:44 PM   #4
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We were in Animal Kingdom on Thanksgiving Day this year. It was totally manageable. The only crowded area we ran into was by Expedition Everest in the afternoon. By 3:30 PM, the park was really emptying out. If you follow the easywdw calendar for recommended parks, you shouldn't have much of a crowd problem.
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