Crowd BlogWalt Disney World (FL)

Post COVID-19 Crowd Calendar Update

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This Crowd Calendar update is a bit different from our normal monthly updates. Since the Florida Disney parks re-opened in July 2020, we assumed that Disney’s “enhanced health and safety measures” would stay in effect. Now that COVID-19 vaccines are approved and started being administered we can start looking at Disney returning to “normal.” We are making the assumption that vaccines will be widely available by April and that “normal” will start to return to Walt Disney World in the summer of 2021. We have no inside information about Disney’s plans for the return to “normal.”

Ever Changing Conditions

Disney’s “enhanced health and safety measures” have been evolving since the parks reopened. Park capacity has slowly increased. Currently, the parks are at 35% capacity. By the summer we expect capacity will be closer to 50%, which is close to the average capacity on an average day. As time has gone on, more Disney hotels have opened; by the fall all hotels should be open. With more people returning to Walt Disney World, more restaurants and experiences will return. Disney keeps finding ways to increase attractions’ capacity. With increased capacity expect to see FastPass+ return. The increased capacity will also foster extended park hours and the return of Extra Magic Hours. Face masks and hand sanitizer will likely be around for most of 2021. Dr. Fauci believes that large gatherings will return in the fall. Only time will tell how long it takes for Disney to return to normal.

Park Schedules

Starting on June 1, 2021, the TouringPlans website and TouringPlans Crowd Calendar are showing Park Hours, Extra Magic Hours, Show Times, Parties, and Events. These are all estimates based on 2018 and 2019 data. As Disney releases its plans and schedules, we will update our website.

Pent-Up Demand

Vacations have been put on hold for many people during the pandemic. Once travel restrictions are lifted it is expected that travel will come back strong. People are sick of being trapped in their homes.

The Economy

The recovery from the recession caused by COVID-19 will impact who will travel to Walt Disney World and how Walt Disney World will operate. New resorts, attractions, and events have been postponed, canceled, or modified. It is expected that there will be a K-Shape Recovery. Some people and industries will recover faster than others. Expect Disney to be minimizing expenses even after the pandemic is over.

Pent-Up Demand vs. The Economy

It will be interesting to see how pent-up demand and the economy work with each other. Disney will likely be stingy with discounts if the demand for travel is high. If bookings are strong for the fall, don’t be surprised if free dining does not return. Do expect that add-on experiences to be offered as Disney will be aggressive about increasing revenue.

Crowd Levels

Dates before June 1, 2021, have crowd levels assuming the current social distancing and other health and safety measures are in place. Starting on June 1, the crowd level predictions are based on pre-pandemic data. As the year progresses, we will have a better idea of how the economy is shaping up and see people’s travel habits. Expect that Crowd Levels will change.


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Steve Bloom

By helping continue to reach the most accurate crowd level predictions, Steve finally found a way to meld his training in statistical analysis with a lifelong passion for Disney. He first visited the Magic Kingdom in 1972, just a few months after it opened. Now he enjoys frequent trips with his two kids. At age four his son insisted on wearing cowboy boots to reach the height requirement for Test Track, and his daughter believes that a smoked turkey leg and Dole Whip make a perfectly balanced meal. Even though she doesn't quite get it, Steve's wife is supportive of his Disney activities.

6 thoughts on “Post COVID-19 Crowd Calendar Update

  • Planned an October trip and noticed they are still having park reservations into 2022. Nervous that parks will be at capacity with no fast passes?

  • I have trusted this calendar for years and sing its praises to everyone planning a theme park trip. How often do you plan to update the calendar now that conditions are changing more? We are going in late June, 2021 and I expect things wont change overnight from the end of May u to the first of June, as reflected in the current calendar.

  • Thank you! Very informative article.

  • We’re booked for the later part of August 2021 and hope that you’re right about Mickey’s Not So Scary coming back when we’re there. After this year, we reeeeeeeallllly need a vacation.

  • This is very helpful, thank you. Are you planning to do an update for Universal Orlando as well? I am planning a late-July trip and will be splitting time between Disney World and Universal.

    • Yes, there will be a Universal update. Expect trends to be similar for both Disney and Universal. If anything, Universal may be more aggressive on returning to normal operations.


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