Today the Disney World Crowd Calendar gets an update. This is the result of a complete review of the predictions for all Walt Disney World attractions.
In short, the calendar did well for Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom, okay for Hollywood Studios (although skewed towards underprediction) and EPCOT was the least accurate. So, we conducted a complete review and refresh of the wait time models and regenerated the Crowd Calendar. Here are the results.
The only park days getting an update in February are at Magic Kingdom between February 18 and 21. Each day is going up by a single point. This is one of those years when Presidents Day and Mardi Gras occur during the same week. Historically that meant huge crowds and although we don’t predict ’10’s across the board this year we do think it will be very busy.
Starting in March you will see several drops at EPCOT of two or more points. In fact, March 1, 2 and 6 will see a drop of 3 points. This isn’t surprising given that the average crowd level observed at EPCOT since January 1 is 5.7. The average predicted crowd level was 6.3. So, these latest updates are recognizing that trend and reducing crowd levels at EPCOT. Other dates in March will see a slight bump in crowd level of 1 point but most dates remain unchanged.
Easter is April 9 this year and the calendar is predicting the same pattern that we have seen in recent (pre-pandemic) memory – busy crowds leading up to Easter weekend but moderate crowd levels on the actual day. No major changes to report during Easter as a result of this update. It seems strange but yes, the calendar is suggesting that it is better to visit on Easter Sunday than the week before.
If you are tracking any dates in May that change from this update it is most likely an increase of one index point. Only three of the changes for May are drops in crowd level and they are all a drop of one point (Magic Kingdom on May 7, Animal Kingdom on May 9 and EPCOT on May 21). The busiest days in May will be Memorial Day weekend.
The changes in June look a lot like May. Only a couple days here and there and always by a single point. The trend is definitely up a point more than down a point. The only days that see a jump of more than one point are the June 10 and June 21, both a jump of two index points at Hollywood Studios.
There is more balance in the changes we see for July with more days dropping than we saw in May and June. Again, the changes are not drastic however, with only three days showing an increase of more than a point. Those are all at Hollywood Studios (July 1, 3 and 4).
August is the first month when we will see crowd levels drop to the lower half of our scale. After this update we will even see Magic Kingdom drop to a level ‘2’ on a few days. Late August is predicted to be a good time for avoiding crowds if you can handle the Florida Summer weather.
Good ‘ole September. Even though September does contain the largest jumps in crowd level on this update, it remains the best month of the year to avoid crowds. If you want ‘1’s, ‘2’s and ‘3’s, there isn’t a better month to find them. However, you won’t find any of these low levels at the Studios in September. This update will push The Studios crowd levels up a point or two on many days in September. This is largely in response to the high average crowd we observed at The Studios last year (4.8). You can find lots of days below a ‘3’ at the other parks, especially at Magic Kingdom on non-party days. Reminder: Our schedule of party dates is just a guess at this point. Once official dates are announced we will update the calendar.
October and Beyond
Changes for October and beyond are a mixed bag of slight increases and slight drops. We only have one day that increases three index points and that is Halloween at The Studios which jumps from a ‘4’ up to a ‘7’. This update includes a complete set of predictions for 2024 dates (only the next 12 months are visible with a subscription) so if long term planning is your goal you can now do that for next year. Note that our predictions for park hours are only estimates.
Overall, this update makes some small adjustments to a minority of dates which should increase our accuracy for 2023. As always, these crowd level predictions are subject to change and we will continue to review the trends we observe to make it as accurate as possible going forward.