• On Jul 30, 2018
    Christine from KY 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.

    Hi! We are going to WDW next week, staying off site and renting a car. How much time do you recommend we allow to park and get to the entrance? I’m considering a 945 reservation inside. Also, is there a show with the characters prior to the gates opening?

    Hi Christine!

    Thank you for bringing your question to the Disney Parks Moms Panel!

    The amount of time I recommend really depends on which Walt Disney World Theme Park you are going to. If you're going to Magic Kingdom Park,  you will actually park your vehicle at the Transportation and Ticket Center and then use the monorails to get to the park entrance. This takes a bit longer than other parks, so I would plan to arrive there no later than 8:00 a.m. You probably won't need that much time, but it will be crowded as everyone arrives for park opening. There is a welcome show at the Magic Kingdom called "Let the Magic Begin". It takes place in front of Cinderella Castle. 

    If you mean Disney's Animal Kingdom Theme Park, Epcot or Disney's Hollywood Studios, the timing would be different. Parking for these parks is at the entrance, so you can walk or take a tram. For those, I would arrive at least an hour prior to your dining reservation. I am not aware of any welcome shows at those three parks. You can find a schedule of events for all the theme parks on the Walt Disney World website's interactive calendar.

    I hope this helps! Please let me know if you have any other questions as you plan. 
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Meet the Panelist: Lori, Indiana

I am currently a homeschool, soccer mom to two active teenage boys. My family loves everything about Disney! Walt Disney World, Disneyland, runDisney, Disney Cruise Line and Disney Vacation Club have been a part of countless magical memories for us through the years. I cannot wait to help you make your own magical memories at Walt Disney World! Learn More About Lori

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