Thanksgiving?

browniemtb

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jan 5, 2006
Hi All,
I haven't posted anything is a very long time and really have not had the opportunity to get back to WDW. That being said, I am looking at potentially booking Thanks giving next year since we will have 2 in college and the young 2 will all be out of school for a bit. So the question is, how are the crowds and has anyone found deals on flights out of New England during that time? Last question, meal plan. We've always done the plan but to me it seems we never get our monies worth so I'm thinking about just winging it there. Thank you
 

kboo

DIS Veteran
Joined
Mar 10, 2014
We went last year. MK was VERY crowded. But with kids your kids' age, it shouldn't be too much of a problem. The other parks were manageable - we did not go to HS, and EP and AK were enjoyable. We definitely used FPs and made our 4th and 5th FPs from the app, we also spent a lot of time having meals at resorts and enjoying the views and Christmas decorations.

FWIW - we had Thanksgiving dinner itself at Whispering Canyon. So much fun!

We have always used Tables in Wonderland, which is a better deal for us than the dining plan. I would wing it or use AP/DVC/TiW for discounts, but DEFINITELY make your dining reservations early. You can always cancel 24 hours before, if you need to.
 

jerseyduke

Home is just where you stay when not at WDW
Joined
Jan 19, 2013
I went T-Day 2 (or 3?) years ago and went to Epcot on Thanksgiving. The crowd was not nearly as bad as I was expecting.
MK might be rough.
I am originally from NJ and my family is there and I go to WDW because I can drive there and do not want to pay Thanksgiving airline prices - which from atlanta to newark are basically double a typical weekend. I have never booked from N.E. to FL but it is like the busiest travel weekend of the year basically. I would not expect any deals, although I would love to be wrong there.

I also use TIW, but thats not worth it for a short stay (and is blacked out on Thanksgiving)
I booked a Thanksgiving day trip late this year (maybe in Spet) and did have a decent number of Thanksgiving Dinner options (Traditional Dinner at the Wave, but I switched it to the turf club), but I would book 180 days out and cancel if needed as @kboo suggested
 
  • kboo

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Mar 10, 2014
    Oh yes - airfares - we found something that arrived around midnight on the Monday night, stayed at the Hyatt at MCO and took DME to WDW on Tuesday AM. That Monday night turned out to be the cheapest all week.
     

    SecondEventuality

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Jun 28, 2019
    I've been closely watching flights since we want to do the same for 2020 and they don't appear to be all that bad, provided the following is met:

    The weekend before TDay appears to be cheap up until the day before thanksgiving.

    Avoid day before Thanksgiving day, weekend (sat and sun) + 1st Monday AFTER thanksgiving.

    After Thanksgiving day, Tuesday and Wednesday are the lowest.

    So for example, this year, Thanksgiving is Thursday, 28th. Looking at the flights a couple of weeks ago, I'd want to book for arrival on Monday 11/25 with a return on Tuesday, 12/3, giving me a min of 8 nights.

    HTH!
     

    Memorymakerfor4

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Sep 15, 2018
    Airfare was outrageous when we booked Southwest right as flights were released. But they gradually came down in price and even had a sale about a month ago to about 1/3 of the original price.
     

    Best Aunt

    "That's the best-est present ever!"
    Joined
    May 1, 2009
    If you have 2 who will be in college, don't they have classes on the Monday after Thanksgiving? So wouldn't they have to leave Orlando on the Sunday after Thanksgiving? I never travel at that time of year, but I would think airfare on Sunday would be pretty expensive.

    Around here, the younger kids also would have classes on Monday, but maybe their schools are different.

    As for the dining plan, I think some people book it for the convenience of knowing their meals are paid for in advance. As to whether it will save you money, that depends on the eating preferences and requirements for everybody in your group.
     

    WilsonFlyer

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Apr 24, 2008
    As far as crowds go, we have seen a tremendous uptick in crowd levels around the 2-3 weeks surrounding Thanksgiving and the first two weeks of December over the last 7-10 years. These are weeks we have been going for years, mostly because of Christmas decorations and lower crowd levels. While it has always been a high-demand DVC time, the increase in park crowd levels has been unbelievable. We're leaving on Wed and returning Sunday and predicted levels are at 10 for everyday at virtually every park.

    The second week in December is about the only hope of even manageable crowd levels that's left between Thanksgiving and the week after NY, and even that one has been crowded in recent years, though not as bad as the rest.

    The holidays are crowded now. It just is what it is.
     

    browniemtb

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jan 5, 2006
    Thank you everyone for you input. Not sure of our travel schedule yet and yes all our kids have school that following Monday so I am unsure of their schedules at this time. Was hoping to do a quick trip sort of thing, like a Tuesday to Sunday. Guess I'll keep my eyes open on flights but I also know that I will probably have to book the room at the 11 month mark to get what we want.
     

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