Crowd Calendar Update for September 2010
The Crowd Calendar has been updated based on Disney Park Schedules for September. You may notice other changes as well as we updated projected park hours for February and March 2011. As a result of our ongoing data collection and thanks to many of you who have submitted times through LINES, many other updates may appear at other times of the year.
Our estimates of crowd size are unofficial and may change whenever Disney changes their park schedules, including changes to parade times, extra magic hours and park closing. Use the crowd calendar as a guide in your planning but also take into consideration the difficulty of getting advance dining reservations. It may be necessary to visit a park on on a day that is not recommended if you prefer dining at certain locations.
The Crowd Calendar is predicting a lot of days at level 4 through September and October. Be aware that if Disney announces a fall promotion, these predictions may change.
Note: The dates for Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party and Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party hard ticket events are projected. Disney has not released the dates yet!
23 thoughts on “Crowd Calendar Update for September 2010”
It seems like MNSSHPs are every other night at the end of September on….is this right?
These are projected, as Disney has not released the official dates yet.
MNSSHPs are unofficial. Disney may announce official dates at the end of the month.
An interesting comment about September/October. Have your historic predictions of those months changed after Disney announces the Free Dining that had, at least through last year, become an annual event? If memory serves, they have announced the offer in late March. Did the announcement make a difference in the predictions in previous years?
Yes it did, great point. If Disney announces a promotion for September and October it is likely that the predictions will go up. Historically, the Disney Dining promotion increased the index by one half of a point, on average.
Cool! Great info, as always, Fred.
We were at WDW 2/14 – 21, and I use so many of your planning tools! When your crowd calendar was updated shortly before my trip, I got a little concerned that I might have to change some stuff in my plan at the last minute. But since I already had all the restaurant ADRs I really wanted, I just kept things the way they were. Everything worked out just fine, because we always arrive at park opening!! And yes, the old crowd levels were definitely lower than your revised projections. But this information helped me plan my days while in the parks. We ate lunch no later than 11 on most days to avoid the crowds we knew would bombard the counter service restaurants! And that was a smart thing – it got pretty chaotic just as we were leaving! Thanks for all your great work – it makes our trips so much more fun and peaceful!
Why the wait-time spike on September 25?
Also, the Food and Wine dates have been announced: October 1 through November 14.
Thanks, the Food and Wine has been added on our most recent update
On September 25th, the Magic Kingdom is open until 11:00pm. This late closing time usually indicates a larger crowd. We don’t know why but we’ve seen this historically as well, every year the last Saturday in September has larger crowds.
I am good but I can’t possibly avoid and simultanously tour Epcot on September 1st. Since it is an EMH morning for Epcot that day, I’m assuming that The Studios were the ones meant for the “good list”.
With the September changes, I see that MK is now a “park to avoid” on most days with MNSSHP. Don’t the early closing hours tend to keep away some of the folks who aren’t attending the party?
I’m confused! Haven’t you always said to AVOID the parks on EMH days? But it seems like in September you are recommending Epcot and Animal Kingdom on EMH days and avoiding them on non-EMH days?? Now my plans are totally backwards from your recommendations.
Fear not, our park hours information for September was not properly updated. We have fixed the problem and you should see that our recommendations line up with EMH schedules. So for the ‘panic’. Incidentally, in September, following the recommendations is much less essential.
Thanks so much for clearing that up! My plans now are perfectly in line with your recommendations, just the way I like it!
As someone who already sent a panicky email to the admins, I concur with the above comments re. confusing recommendations in September and October. Thanks for clarifying that some of the confusion stems from the unannounced MNSSHP dates. Still, I’m starting to wonder how much impact special events and EMHs actually have on crowd levels that are only a 4 or 5 to begin with anyway. When the crowds are so small, and a touring plan is used, does the idea of “parks to avoid” become obsolete? Why or why not?
Always remember that the crowd levels in the Calendar (“4 or 5”) only reflect conditions at the Magic Kingdom. If predictions are low at MK, it may well be because they are heavier somewhere else. This is perhaps the biggest weakness of the Crowd Calendar as it’s presently constituted.
I’m hoping that Fred or someone else on the staff will write us an article at some point, addressing this issue, to see if this understanding is really correct.
Yes, the index reflects the peak wait time projected at the three mountains in the Magic Kingdom. As a general guide it also reflects attendance around WDW as a whole.
We are developing a new crowd calendar that will offer more detail for all parks. Look for that some time in May.
There are some older blog posts about the definitions used by the calendar but perhaps it is time for a refresher.
Ooooooo, a new crowd calendar?!!!!! The hair on the back of my neck is tingling. I can’t wait to see it. I love the crowd calendar, and totally use it to plan when our trip will be and what parks we will attend each day.
I do agree with a previous post that mentions that the lowest number one can find on the calendar is a 4. The first thing I did after I got my first premium membership was to search the whole calendar for 1-3 days. I think that a 1 rated day at WDW is a mythical thing at this point. 😉
It’s a good question, one we often recieve. The lower the crowds the less important it is to stick to the recommendations. With crowds of 4, 5 or 6 feel free to wing it as you please. At 7 or 8 a little planning will help. When it goes up to 9 or 10 following a touring plan and the best days recommendations is essential.
Here’s somethign I’ve wondered about. Is it better to go to the MK when it’s not recommended, but listed as a 4 or to go when it is the recommended park and the crowd level is predicted to be a 6?
MK is always recommended on Mondays(I know it’s because it’s the day after EMH evening), but Mondays are always a higher crowd level than other days of the week.
What is the benefit of going on the recommended day when the crowd predictor is telling you that it will be more crowded than a Tuesday or Wednesday?
The Crowd Level index is intended to identify the size of the crowd at the Magic Kingdom by labelling the estmated peak wait time at the three Mountains. The best park (worst park) recommendations are independent of the crowd estimates and are intended to identify the days that are the best for touring. For example, a day at the Magic Kingdom rated a 6 with an 11:00 closing might be a better day for touring than a 4 with a 8:00 closing because the 6 day has Spectromagic and Wishes and the 4 day does not.
So it means… its up to you. You have to weigh your preference for touring versus your tolerence for crowds. Luckily, in your case, the difference between a 4 and a 6 is not significant in terms of touring. Either day is probably fine.
Where can I find your crowd levels and touring recommendations for October 15-23, 2010?