• On Apr 27, 2012
    Lee Asked Note: This answer was provided prior to the change to planDisney and may still contain references to Disney Parks Moms Panel.

    Experiences, policies, pricing and other offerings are subject to change and may have changed since the date of this answer.

    We are planning our 1st Disney vac 12/13-12/22. What can we expect in regards to crowds?

    Hi Lee,

    I simply love Walt Disney World in December!  There isn't a more beautiful time to visit the Disney theme parks and resorts.  

    Many people have discovered how magical Walt Disney World is in December.  That means you will find fairly large crowds throughout the month. (An independent website,, makes predictions about crowd levels in the Disney theme parks.  Several of my friends use this site to help them decide when they will visit each park.)  However, it sounds like you'll be departing just in time to miss the biggest crowds.  It is not at all uncommon for the theme parks to stop admitting additional guests mid-day because they have reached capacity on the days between Christmas and New Year's Day.  

    The crowds will be much more reasonable while you are there.  Nonetheless, I encourage you to take advantage of Extra Magic Hours if you are a Disney resort guest.  These are special times when only guests staying at a Disney-owned resort can access the parks.  Lines to attractions are typically much shorter during Extra Magic Hours.

    Also, I recommend that you make advance dining reservations for any table service restaurants you'd like to explore during your trip.  You should call (407) WDW-DINE 180 days in advance of your vacation to book these reservations.  Disney's most popular restaurants book up quickly so call as soon as your reservation window opens.  Let us know if you need recommendations for places to dine.  We love Disney dining questions here at the Moms Panel.

    Wishing you and your family a truly magical first visit to Walt Disney World!


    PS. Promise me you'll visit Disney's Grand Floridian Resort and Disney's Wilderness Lodge at least briefly during your stay.  The decorations in the lobbies of these resorts are simply breath-taking in December! 
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Meet the Panelist: Jill, New Jersey

Lesson plans, college plans, vacation a teacher, college counselor, and incurable Disney fan I find myself constantly planning.  I love to share advice with friends who have yet to experience all that Walt Disney World has to offer! Learn More About Jill

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