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WDW Crowd Calendar update for late 2021

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This Crowd Calendar update just affects November and December 2021. The prior predictions were based on data prior to 2019. We expect crowds will be similar, or a bit higher, than pre-pandemic levels. There is still a lot that is unknown about park operations in late 2021. Since Disney has not published park hours we have to look to the past and make some educated guesses. The only thing that has changed since our original estimate is that Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party is not happening and is being replaced with Disney Very Merriest After Hours event. Since Disney has not yet announced the specific dates of the after-hours event, we are assuming they will follow the same pattern as party dates in 2019. For Crowd Levels, the change from a party to an after-hours event is that the park hours will be longer. Instead of the Magic Kingdom closing at 6 p.m., the park will close at 9 p.m.. Even though this change impacts the Magic Kingdom, it will also change our predictions at all parks, and predictions on non-party days. Once Disney releases official park hours and dates of the after-hour events, we will revise Crowd Levels again.

Do you have any questions or thoughts about this new update? Let us know in the comments.

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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.

7 thoughts on “WDW Crowd Calendar update for late 2021

  • At certain times of the year there are an incredibly large number of Brits at WDW. At the moment we are not permitted to travel to the US by our prime minister and your president. My sister has just been notified that her late August/early September flights to WDW has been cancelled by the airline she had booked with. Although we have had 2 holidays cancelled to WDW since the beginning of the pandemic, our holiday in late September/October hasn’t been cancelled – yet. Have your wait times taken into account that hardly anyone from Europe including the U.K. (we are still located in Europe despite leaving the European Union) will not be able to visit WDW unless things change?

    • Hi Ruth. Yes, the forecasts take into account that international guests are minimal. Once international guests are permitted the wait times will likely increase.

  • Michelle: Yes, fireworks will be shown 7 nights per week for day guests regardless of the after hours events.

  • Steve, Disney has already announced that the very merriest events will run 9pm-1am. Given that the current schedule has the park closing at 8:30pm on Boo Bash evenings and 9pm otherwise, are you not assuming that the same will hold true for VMAH?

    In any case, it seems the whole point of running after hours events in lieu of the usual halloween/xmas “parties” is to eliminate the crazy crowd level patterns that typically emerge on party vs non-party nights. With the park closing time *basically* being a constant, and fireworks still being shown to day guests every day, are you seeing any reason to expect these after hours events to affect day-to-day crowd levels (as they are defined by TP)?

    • 8:30 or 9:00 closing time will not have an impact on crowd levels. Fireworks will be the end of the day for day guests.

      Unlike the holiday parties, we don’t expect the After Hours events to have an impact on crowds. I would expect that some non-After Hour event days will have longer park hours, and that would make those days more appealing to day guests.

      • Hi Steve,
        I think I’m confused by what your wrote. Are you saying day guests will still get to see fireworks on after hour events nights before they leave the park?

      • Just to confirm what Andy wrote, yes day guests can see fireworks on their park day before the after hours event begins.

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