Welcome back to what has become a yearly tradition: predicting the least crowded Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween party. We’ll look back at last year’s recommendations in a bit and give you the full 2019 list, but first make sure you check out our dedicated page for a complete list of dates as well as a thorough description of what the Halloween party is.
In short, if you’re looking for the best 2019 Halloween Party to attend, we recommend Tuesday, September 24, 2019. Four out of the past five years we’ve recommended a Tuesday night party in mid-September. In 2017 we broke that streak because the parties started so darn early that year. (It turned out that more people went to the late-August parties than the early September parties.) This year the numbers are pointing a little later in September, so we’ve gone with the 24th, although those earlier parties all still rank very high.
The entire list of parties and how we rank them can be found below, but here are some general rules:
- Parties earlier in the year are less busy than those closer to Halloween. There are certainly exceptions that are listed below, but for most parties this is true.
- Tuesdays are generally less busy than other days. Again, exceptions, but when in doubt go on a Tuesday.
Before we get to the 2019 party rankings, let’s revisit our predictions from last year to see how accurate we were. Here were our top 5 recommended party days and how they turned out:
|Party Date||Projected Rank||Actual Measured Rank|
|Tuesday, September 11, 2018||Lowest Wait Times||13|
|Tuesday, August 28, 2018||2||8|
|Friday, September 07, 2018||3||3|
|Friday, August 24, 2018||4||5|
|Tuesday, September 25, 2018||5||7|
As you can see, we didn’t do too badly. Number 1 isn’t great, and we don’t really have an explanation why a party that has been historically in the best 5 fell into the teens last year. The parties directly before (September 10) and directly after (September 14) ranked in the 20’s, but the September 7 and September 16 parties ranked 3 and 4, respectively. The lower crowds on September 11th strengthen our “Tuesdays are better” advice, but we’re still not totally sure why that week got busy.
Every year the wait times we’ve been monitoring have gone up. Finally, in 2018, the average wait time dropped slightly to a 14 1/2 minute average wait (down from 15 in 2017). The attraction with the highest average wait is (no surprise) Seven Dwarfs Mine Train at 35 minutes, followed by Peter Pan’s Flight at 25, Space Mountain at 23, and Haunted Mansion at 22. Among the lowest are “it’s a small world,” Under the Sea, Splash Mountain (remember, it’s at night), and the Barnstormer, all averaging around 7 minutes. As always, there are peaks and valleys, and the lowest times will usually occur late in the party or during parades or fireworks.
This year I also took a long look at the high and low average waits for the rides, and which parties they occurred at. The calculations did factor into the rankings, but the October 14 party really jumped out because there were 5 attractions that had their highest average wait that night: Space Mountain (34), Peter Pan (32), Haunted Mansion (30), Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin (12), and “it’s a small world” (12). The other one worth pointing out is the September 3 party (Labor Day), which saw the lowest average wait for 3 attractions: 7 Dwarfs (29), Peter Pan (20), and Buzz Lightyear (6).
Now let’s get on to this year’s rankings. Here are our predicted rankings of crowds at each of the 2019 Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Parties. Our formula now considers more than just attraction wait times. We now also consider if previous parties sold out and we look at the crowd ratings for the daytime hours. The sold out parties prior to 2016 have been removed from the chart because sellouts were much more common prior to 2016. We present the chart below in order to give you as much information as we have so that you can make an informed decision.
|Party Date||Attraction Wait Times Rank||Advance Purchase Price for an Adult Ticket||Notes|
|Tuesday, September 24, 2019||Lowest Wait Times||$85|
|Tuesday, September 10, 2019||2||$79|
|Friday, September 06, 2019||3||$85|
|Sunday, September 29, 2019||4||$85|
|Sunday, September 15, 2019||5||$79|
|Friday, August 30, 2019||6||$85|
|Tuesday, October 01, 2019||7||$85|
|Tuesday, August 27, 2019||8||$79|
|Monday, September 02, 2019||9||$79|
|Tuesday, August 20, 2019||10||$79|
|Friday, September 27, 2019||11||$85|
|Sunday, September 22, 2019||12||$79|
|Sunday, September 08, 2019||13||$79|
|Friday, September 13, 2019||14||$85|
|Friday, August 23, 2019||15||$85|
|Sunday, October 27, 2019||16||$115||Sold out 10 days in advance in 2016.|
|Monday, October 21, 2019||17||$105||Sold out 1 day in advance in 2016.|
|Friday, October 04, 2019||18||$115|
|Thursday, October 17, 2019||19||$105|
|Friday, September 20, 2019||20||$85|
|Thursday, October 24, 2019||21||$105|
|Tuesday, September 17, 2019||22||$79|
|Friday, August 16, 2019||23||$85||First Party. Sold out 1 day in advance in 2018.|
|Tuesday, October 15, 2019||24||$105|
|Tuesday, October 29, 2019||25||$115||Sold out 1 days in advance in 2018.|
|Friday, October 18, 2019||26||$115|
|Friday, October 25, 2019||27||$115|
|Thursday, October 10, 2019||28||$105|
|Thursday, October 03, 2019||29||$105|
|Sunday, October 20, 2019||30||$105|
|Friday, October 11, 2019||31||$115|
|Tuesday, October 08, 2019||32||$105|
|Sunday, October 06, 2019||33||$105|
|Friday, November 01, 2019||34||$115|
|Monday, October 14, 2019||35||$105||Sold out 1 day in advance in 2017.|
|Thursday, October 31, 2019||Most Crowded Party||$135||Sold out 54 days in advance in 2016, 23 days in 2017, and 16 days in 2018. Crowds will be heavy for character meets and parades.|
Our wait times only include attractions−not character meet and greets, special shows, or parades. The characters, in particular, often have long lines, especially for rare characters like Jack Skellington or the Seven Dwarfs. Regardless of which party you attend, some of the character lines will be long. If those are a must-do, do them as early in the evening as possible.
Looking for more information? You may want to check out Derek Burgan’s Six Reasons why He Loves the Halloween Party for even more Halloweenieness (that made-up word is even a stretch for me).
If you consider yourself handy with the camera, or if you simply want better pictures, you can’t go wrong with Tom Bricker’s tips on photographing the Halloween party.
Now that you are armed with the most powerful weapon…knowledge, you can plan your 2019 trip to Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party. This blog post will help you find all of the party dates and prices.
Hopefully this analysis will help you choose the best Halloween Party to attend. Make sure to check back here in a future blog post, where we’ll be breaking down the best dates for Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party.