Walt Disney World (FL)

Touring Plan Test: Animal Kingdom (4-3-2021)

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On Saturday, April 3, we did another side-by-side test at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. We tested all attractions with a posted wait time.

Attractions in Animal Kingdom Touring Plan Test
1  Pandora: Flight of Passage
3  Expedition Everest
4  It’s Tough to Be a Bug!
5  Kali River Rapids
6  Kilimanjaro Safaris
7  Na’vi River Journey
8  TriceraTop Spin

The predicted Crowd Level on April 3, was a 2, and the actual crowd level was a 1 at the Animal Kingdom. Park hours were 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. We had three researchers in the park, with Morgan doing two tests. Chrissy started at 7:30 a.m., Morgan’s first test started at 8:00 a.m, Morgan’s second test started at 2:00 p.m., and Ivonne started at 4:00 p.m. Each plan was optimized for its specific start time.

Chrissy’s 7:30 a.m. Initial Plan
Morgan’s 8:00 a.m. Initial Plan
Morgan’s 2:00 p.m. Initial Plan
Ivonne’s 4:00 p.m. Initial Plan

The initial plans are not too surprising. We have seen time over time that knocking out the Pandora attractions before the official park opening time sets up an efficient day of touring. Ivonne’s plan risks running out of time to complete all the attractions.

Chrissy’s 7:30 a.m. Final Plan
Morgan’s 8:00 a.m. Final Plan
Morgan’s 2:00 p.m. Final Plan
Ivonne’s 4:00 p.m. Final Plan

All plans were re-optimized before they started, and were re-optimized during the testing. Morgan’s 8:00 a.m. plan took the longest to complete. She waited a total of 216 minutes. Her 2:00 p.m. plan did a bit better with 150 minutes of waiting. Chrissy’s early entry, 7:30 a.m. plan took 119 minutes of waiting. The big surprise is that Ivonne’s 4:00 p.m. plan took the least amount of time to complete. Her total wait time was 89 minutes.

One thing we were surprised about with the final afternoon plans is that they both put Flight of Passage first. The optimizer decided that the wait time at Flight of Passage was not going to significantly change for the rest of the day. It decided it was better to put other attractions later in the day since they did have a significant reduction in wait times. Ivonne rode Flight of Passage after her plan was done, and she confirmed that doing Flight of Passage at the end of the day had a similar wait time, 45 minutes.


With the TouringPlans tests we have been doing we have noticed a pattern that a late afternoon plan is more efficient than arriving early. Without nighttime shows to keep people in the parks, evening touring is a good strategy.

Have any questions about our in-park testing? Have a strategy you want tested? Let us know in the comment.

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Steve Bloom

By helping TouringPlans.com 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.

7 thoughts on “Touring Plan Test: Animal Kingdom (4-3-2021)

  • I also downloaded the twitch app for the only purpose to watch the stream. I watched the whole thing!
    This follow up review is great. Keep them coming. I have a touring plans subscription too.
    We go in December I’m sure things will be different by then though.

  • How do you measure a 20 minute wait in line starting at 7:25am for Flight? Did the ride open earlier than 8am?

    • Betty, yes, the parks have been letting guests in around 40-50 minutes before official opening for some time now. And that’s true at all the parks.

      • Do you include the time waiting for the park to open as part of the wait?

      • There is a list of attractions at each park, that we expect will open before the official park opening. For those attractions, the wait time will not include time to wait for the park to open. For other attractions, if they are scheduled before park opening, the wait time would include time to wait for the attraction to open. For example, If DINOSAUR is your first step, the park opens at 8 am, but the plan starts at 7:15, you will have a long wait…

  • I watched the Twitch stream (love those live tests, by the way…it is the only reason I downloaded Twitch a few weeks ago!) and was wondering if the transportations reliable enough to do all of two different parks on the same day since most of the parks’ shows are still closed? for example, could someone get through all of HS (with an early BG or without one entirely), then hop to AK and do that entire park, too?

    • Definitely could. Arrive late, and closing the parks has become some of the most efficient touring. Without nighttime spectaculars, people are leaving the parks earlier.


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