Back on the Disney train! Low seasons?

Hamm&Eggz

Earning My Ears
Joined
Apr 10, 2019
Hi all,

A year ago I inherited DVC points and did my first trip to WDW as an adult in several decades. Epcot '82-88 were important parts of my formative years (the smell of oranges at Horizons!), and I had nearly forgotten how awesome the experience was. Of course, now we're planning on making these trips a semi-regular occurrence!

Question: Is there a true "low season" anymore?

I remember as an 80s kid there would be days when the parks were virtually empty and all line ups were non existent. I can't imagine that being the case nowadays unless you're there at the tail end of a hurricane (as we were last time).

Cheers,
H&E
 

73 Ranchero

Earning My Ears
Joined
Apr 9, 2019
We found that the last two weeks in Jan and the 1st week in Feb and the 1st week in Dec are good times to go. We also have found (but not as good the last few years) the 1st week in May and the middle of Oct are ok tomes.
 

Hamm&Eggz

Earning My Ears
Joined
Apr 10, 2019
Thanks for that insight! We originally thought that Superbowl wkend would be quiet (as people would be in front of their TVs), but looking at some vlogs, the exact opposite appears to be true. And now with Galaxy's Edge opening.. who knows?!
 
  • VRguy

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Dec 28, 2018
    We've been the first week of May before and didnt find it too crowded. There were still crowds, but nothing like Spring Break.
     

    Wild4Walt

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 28, 2008
    We've done 2nd week of May and crowds were low to moderate - very manageable. Last year we did the week after Labor Day and it was pretty slow. Longest wait times ( outside of FoP, Navi and SDD ) wait times were only around 10-15 minutes.

    I, too, remember the days when you could go and there was almost no wait times. I think with SWGE, those days are gone for awhile.
     

    Hamm&Eggz

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Apr 10, 2019
    Any experience with a low season in the winter, to take advantage of the less-hot weather? Would there be a window of opportunity after Halloween and before Xmas?
     

    VRguy

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Dec 28, 2018
    I would like to know this as well. Hopefully someone can chime in with some good advice.
     
  • Hamm&Eggz

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Apr 10, 2019
    I just went through the DVC points calendar, and the first 2 weeks of September and the first 2 weeks of December are considered "low season". Whether that translates as significantly less crowds at the parks remains to be seen. Note that the last time I was at WDW was in September 2017, literally 1-2 days after hurricane Irma and we whizzed through all the major rides in every park in about half a day. FoP was "only" a 2.5 hour line.
     

    Crygon

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Jan 25, 2017
    We've found that the more people research the best time to go, the more busy the "low" seasons are. September used to be great but that stopped a few years ago. Then the first few weeks of December were good, now they're just okay. The end of January and beginning of February are starting to go away too. The week after the Pro Bowl still seems good, unless a marathon lines up with those weekends.

    I'm hoping it's cyclical and we'll have people realizing that it wasn't worth taking the kids out of school to go to the busy "low" times.
     

    Crygon

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Jan 25, 2017
    Oh... also, Welcome Home. DVC has been amazing for us. I'm jealous that you inherited the points.
     
  • Nomad70

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    May 29, 2012
    We typically go in September, first to second week. There are crowds, but we have never had a problem with lines or even getting into a table service without reservations. We have gone at Christmas time and Halloween, again it didn't seem too overly crowded, but maybe I just psyched myself up for large crowds and was pleasantly surprised? lol
     

    Miffy

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Dec 13, 2002
    OP--Perceptions of what "not crowded" means at WDW have changed a lot since the '80s. I can remember going in the beginning of January--before they had the marathon--and walking on to every ride. This sort of experience simply doesn't exist anymore, no matter what time of year you go.

    I can't speak for September, as I've never been then, but I have been several times the end of January/beginning of February and have still run into crowds that surprised me. Also, just a heads-up here, that is the time of year that many rides are down for refurbishment, which is one of the reasons I stopped going then.

    I was just at WDW the first week of May this year. It wasn't bad, but compared to the '80s, I'd say that it was quite crowded. Compared to now? Not that crowded.

    As far as the first couple of weeks of December go--I go then every year and it's more and more crowded every year. Last year (December 2018) my sister and I actually left MK before noon one day because the crowds were intolerable to us. But neither of us likes big crowds.

    These days you have to do a lot of planning that was completely unnecessary in the '80s. Keep that in mind. For popular rides, you should book your FP+s at the 60-day mark (assuming you're staying onsite) or the 30-day mark if you're off-site.

    Some wonderful things that've happened since the '80s, though! There are 4 parks now, and if you like animals at all, Animal Kingdom is, to me, the best park at WDW. Avatar Flight of Passage is, imo, the best ride Disney's ever done. And the Pandora area itself is just beautiful, as is all of Animal Kingdom. There are also far more places to stay onsite and many, many new attractions that will wow you.

    I do miss Horizons, though!
     


    Connect

    Disney News and Updates

    Get Daily Email Updates

    .
    Top