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Old 02-11-2013, 08:33 PM   #46
Canooknic
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We are here now and haven't had any problems with the cheerleaders. They've been very sweet and considerate from what I've seen - the "fifteen" group from Argentina however are a completely different story!!
They almost trampled one of my boys on his way to Haunted Mansion, barged through everyone most of the day at MK on Thursday and on Sunday at Universal grouped right between my family and the US photographer at the globe while he was taking our picture (which is how I found out where they were from - he was really unimpressed with their behaviour all day and gave them a mouthful about their lack of manners!)
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Old 02-11-2013, 08:50 PM   #47
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We are here now and haven't had any problems with the cheerleaders. They've been very sweet and considerate from what I've seen - the "fifteen" group from Argentina however are a completely different story!!
They almost trampled one of my boys on his way to Haunted Mansion, barged through everyone most of the day at MK on Thursday and on Sunday at Universal grouped right between my family and the US photographer at the globe while he was taking our picture (which is how I found out where they were from - he was really unimpressed with their behaviour all day and gave them a mouthful about their lack of manners!)
Saw a large group yesterday being severely reprimanded in Epcot by a CM. It was interesting to me that the tour guide at the time was standing on a bench speaking to the group in Spanish with a heavy American accent.
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Old 02-11-2013, 09:18 PM   #48
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I was at MK on 2/7, a touring plan rated "4" day at a neutral park. We are local so we usually avoid EMH days as we don't stay at hotels. This time we did stay on property so we took advantage of the early EMH and got everything done by 11 or so. But for those of you that doubt the OP's experience, here's a couple of pictures for you. 3:48, Thursday afternoon. As they say, a picture is worth a thousand words. I call the second picture, "Look Ma! No smiles."





And for those that wonder about TP vs EasyWDW, TP had MK as "neutral" while Josh had it as "avoid" due to the EMH. We only went to that park on that day because we had a family reunion of sorts happening and that was the only day that worked for us. For an idea of other times, at 2:30, Mermaid was 70 minutes, SM was 70 and Jungle Cruise was 55.

Last edited by eticketride; 02-11-2013 at 11:02 PM. Reason: Just realized Thursday was the 7th, not the 8th.
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Old 02-11-2013, 09:46 PM   #49
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Was at MK on 2/3. Longest line I waited in was the dole whip line. Haha! Such a nice day with great weather.
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Old 02-11-2013, 09:58 PM   #50
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I, for one, don't doubt the OP!
I am a firm believer in the fact that people tend to follow the same patterns on their vacations and that is why you can go the exact same week and have 2 very different crowd experiences.
I believe it was Thursday, the 7th that those pictures are from? That was the day that the park had EMH and MSEP. (There was no MSEP on T, W, or F) Talk about a recipe for disaster! The irony is, I've seen pics of the MK from Tues. the 5th and the wait times were so low!
So, yes, it is very believable that the OP had horrible crowds and I feel badly about that. But, the fact is, this past week still was one of the quietest times at Disney all year. Because of that, WDW adjusted hours and schedules accordingly thereby causing a larger percentage of the guests to follow the same pattern.
OTOH, over the next 2 weeks, Disney has MSEP showing 2x every single night because of the Mardi Gras/ President's week crowds. The hours at the parks will be extended etc...So, the crowds will space themselves out much better making it seem like it's not that much more crowded even though that is not the case.
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Old 02-11-2013, 10:04 PM   #51
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Yikes. I will be there in two weeks. I hope it has calmed down. The calm before the Spring Break storm, if you will.
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Old 02-11-2013, 10:09 PM   #52
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Weekend volume at MK was unbelievable!

We were there February 5-11 and knew we were going against park recommendations, visiting Epcot during the week as we were staying (and attending a conference) at Beach Club, then switched to Magic Kingdom on the weekend as we moved to the Poly (geographically, it made sense to visit the park nearby).

I agree with OP. The parks were a madhouse! We have travelled in May, September and October and have never seen it as busy as MK on the weekend. It was packed. We waited 40 minutes for a Dole Whip Float. The wait times OP listed were accurate and the counter service lineups were nuts. We have never had to queue for Pirates in the area out front, which has been used for stroller parking on all of our visits. This time, there was a snaking lineup.

When I asked a CM if this was normal for this time of year, he said he didn't know what was going on, but they were expecting a 60,000 guest day. I don't know at what point they close the park, but that didn't sound good. And, when I asked if we could extend our stay at the Poly if the snow storm in the north closed the airport, they told me I could not as they were at capacity, but would direct me to another hotel if needed.

I will say, however, that most table service reservations were running on time, and BOG lineup at 12:30 (prime time?) was only about 35-40 minutes, so not bad at all.

We had no issue with the tour groups or cheerleaders. For the most part, they moved around in small groups, and we did not witness any obnoxious or inappropriate behavior. The real issue was the strollers! I've heard people complain about them in past, and never really got it. This time, it was bad, probably because they had to really struggle to get through the throngs.

I took tons of crowd pictures as proof. To say it was crowded was an understatement. Another poster asked what OP was expecting travelling in February. I suspect, like I did, they expected low February crowds. What we got was summer crowds, based on photos I've seen. Not impossible, but not what you'd expect this time of year (perhaps they were all descending to try that Limited Time Magic Lobster Bisque at Magic Kingdom?!?).

Also unexpected was the weather - it was sunny and balmy. Shorts weather for sure. Couldn't beat that, although you did need a jacket most evenings and mornings, which also made for chilly swimming but nothing was keeping me out of Stormalong Bay!

We will not likely return in early February again.
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Old 02-11-2013, 10:12 PM   #53
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I was there 2/1-2/4 and thought it was busier than expected but not awful sorry it affected you so much.

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Old 02-11-2013, 10:21 PM   #54
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I went from 1/18 thru 1/26 and it was crazy busy. Lots of groups from South America. We had to wait in lines outside of counter service rest. And wait to get in to order food.
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Old 02-11-2013, 10:35 PM   #55
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I was there from 2/2-2/9. It was busy, but not too bad. We had a great time.
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Old 02-11-2013, 10:43 PM   #56
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I hope it doesn't appear that I am doubting the OP's experience. I've had a similar one in fact. In 2011 we went in February. It was quiet to moderate all week and we had no issues. One night after dinner I thought "How bad can it be if we head over to Wishes?"

It was BAD. It took us 30 minutes to get down Main Street. Cast members were directing people out service entrances. Wall to wall people and the CM's doing their best trying to keep the crowds moving.
It was a Friday night, a not recommended park and people were rolling in to start their Presidents Week vacations. I was so surprised. And it was then that I realized why MK was not recommended that evening. So sometimes hitting the wrong park on a seemingly moderate week can be mayhem.
I don't do much planning of my actual day, but I always follow the crowd calendar recommended parks for the day now and it seems to help quite a bit.
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Old 02-11-2013, 10:52 PM   #57
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Yep, we were there 2/1 to 2/3 for my days off that week, went to MK on friday... easywdw crowd calendar said it was a 3 that day and MK was the suggested park.

Wait times were NUTS and not very accurate. Which goes back to the theory that they are fiddeling with fast passes and the ammount given out. It didn't slow down the entire day.

We'll be back the 27th through 3/1 hopefully things will have slowed down a little by then.
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Old 02-11-2013, 10:57 PM   #58
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I was there 1/26 to 2/1 The only really crowded day at MK was fri 2/1 but it wasn't jammed...just busy. We had 10 minutes and under waits on most every ride....even character meet lines were short.....the BTG were rude, pushy and annoying !!!!!
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Old 02-11-2013, 11:03 PM   #59
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Just got back - 2/1 thru 2/10 trip - never will go in February. Couldn't believe the crowds - especially on Saturday. Couldn't move. And the "15" groups from South America were untolerable. I use a scooter and was trying to get on a bus at EPCOT when 4 groups converged and started chanting and they wouldn't let me get to the ramp to the bus. They were so rude! Cheerleaders were there on the weekends but they were well behaved. Downtown Disney was a zoo especially with only 1 bus stop. Any questions I'd be happy to answer. Weather was great though.
I will always go in February. But I sympathize with the fifteens problem. I am very straightforward with them. They do not have enough chaperoning, so I've decided to be assertive with them. They are just kids in a foreign country and need to be told things. And they listen well when you do. I tell them that when a child's sleeping on the bus, no chanting. I tell them they can't sit for the parade right in front of a group of 6 year-olds. Etc. someone needs to tell them. Their chaperones don't. and sometimes i will even tell their chaperones. A lot of times they are kids themselves, and also want to be welcome guests in our country. But I understand that most people aren't as bold as me. I think Disney will get it sorted out soon. We just need to keep bringing it to their attention.
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Old 02-12-2013, 06:41 AM   #60
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We were there Jan 30-Feb 8. We followed easywdw's recommendations for days. A couple we didn't and we knew going in to expect crowds and it was crazy those days.

But for the most part we made rope drop and got lots done in the morning and enjoyed the shows, parades and less popular rides in the afternoon while the late arrivals waited in the lines! With going in morning, utilizing a couple of EMH and FPs we rarely waited in lines for rides. I think the longest line was for lunch at BOG!
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