Thursday, 15 March 2012

It's all about the timing!

Inspiried by the recent post over at 'Disney Lovin Spectrum Mom' I thought I’d take a look at my own trip time line and look at the pros and cons of each one with regards to weather, crowds, events etc.

Timing your trip to suit your family and budget is really important, there have been several occasions when first timers have told me they have thought about booking for Christmas week or during March (both of which even the most seasoned guests find difficult!) and I’ve done everything in my power to change their mind. Sometimes it’s not easy, work holidays, annual leave, schools and exams etc, you’ve got to work with what you’ve got.

Hopefully this will give you a little first hand insight into the times of year I’ve visited Walt Disney World, and eventually I will get around to providing you with more information on the rest of the calendar year!

Away we go!


  • Pros – Once you get New Years out of the way, you practically have the park to yourself for those first 2 weeks or so of the month. New Years Day in fact, Magic Kingdom was deserted until around . The weather was mild, though still warm enough to splash about in the water parks! The Christmas decorations are also still up for the first few days around the resorts and a little longer in the parks.

  • Cons – If you love immense heat, sunshine and humidity you won’t get it this time of year!

  • Be sure to pack – some sort of jacket, or thin hoodie as the nights can get a little cooler.


  • Pros – Brilliant weather, a real taste of Florida sunshine. The likes of Busch Gardens, Sea World, Universal etc we had almost to ourselves (Busch was a real ghost town, we didn’t queue for anything all day!). Schools on both sides of the pond are still in session during the first few weeks, keeping crowd levels down and prices reasonable.

  • Cons – I can’t comment on the Disney parks! I didn’t go inside them this trip, but that’s another story for another post!. If you don’t like heat you’re going to be uncomfortable, the humidity in the afternoon can be stifling. We also had a lot of rain and thunder storms in the evenings.  

  • Be sure to pack – Mini fan and a poncho, you’ll spend a fortune on them if you buy after arriving!


  • Pros – We got a great price for a 2 bedroom villa at Saratoga Springs Resort (we are not DVC members) and we also got the dining plan.

  • Cons – Towards the middle to end of the month the kids are getting ready to go back to school so you might find a sudden surge of last minute holiday makers! Next to late December, this has probably been the busiest time of year we’ve gone to Walt Disney World. Longer lines and intense humidity made for some uncomfortable days. Most days we had torrential rain at some point, be it for 5 minutes in the afternoon or early into late evening and lasting all night. We also had some incredible thunder and lightning storms!

  • Be sure to pack –Ponchos! We spent a fortune on them in the parks, having to get them out and use them so often, they didn’t last more than 2 or 3 days, and at $10 a go for a party of 4 it soon all added up!


  • Pros – Great prices for a start, all the kids are starting to go back to school, summer holidays are officially over and crowd levels are dropping. Later in the month you’ll be coming out of the ‘rainy season’ so showers are few and far between and there is a decrease in humidity. It’s warm early on, comfortable during the day and warm into late evening but not in a clammy.  

  • Cons –  If you go during the earlier part of the month it’ll be pretty hot and pretty humid, with plenty of storms towards the early to middle of the month.

  • Be sure to pack – A Halloween costume! Mickeys Not So Scary Halloween party officially kicks off in September!

2002, 2005,

  • Pros – This has to be one of my all time favourite times of year to visit Walt Disney World (and not just because it’s my birthday!) Early in the morning, you step out of your resort and a lovely heat hits you, not the intense humid kind, more like a comforting spreading of warmth which lasts all day and well into the evening. It hardly rains and crowds are at one of their lowest points! Mickeys Not So Scary Halloween Party is in full swing for the duration of the month, as is Epcots Food and Wine festival!

  • Cons – Over the last few years I’ve noticed the price for October creeping up, Disney have obviously realised what a great time of year it is to visit! Try and avoid Columbus Day too as the prices and crowds sky rocket!

  • Be sure to pack – Some bigger shorts if you decide to indulge at the Food and Wine festival!


  • Pros – Early November is a very quiet time of year. The parks are starting to get ready for Christmas with most of the decorations up by the end of the first week in the parks. Perfect if you want to experience some Christmas magic whilst avoiding the late December prices! The weather is sunny but extremely mild, great for those who want to avoid intense heat, and it doesn’t rain much either!

  • Cons – Veterans Day is busy so try and avoid it if you can! It takes a while to warm up too, most days it didn’t get warm until mid afternoon and by around it was already starting to cool down. Evenings are pretty chilly.

  • Be sure to pack – Jeans and a light jacket or cardigan, especially for the evening!


  • Pros – We didn’t arrive until after Christmas day but the feeling and buzz around Walt Disney World was fantastic! All the decorations are still up, as well as Mickeys Very Merry Christmas Parade (finishes just before Christmas Day) and the Candlelight Processional still showing. The days are getting cooler, the mornings and evening chillier.

  • Cons – The run up to Christmas and Christmas week are chaotic as well as hard on the budget! It will settle for a day or so after Christmas day, then the New Years Eve crowds come in. We found Magic Kingdom at capacity before , and Epcot hitting capacity early afternoon.

  • Be sure to pack – A thicker sweat top! Evenings can be especially chilly.

There you have it, just a few quick thoughts from past experiences and things I’ve heard out and about. As you can probably tell, we much prefer the second half of the year for it’s weather, crowd levels, pricing and overall experience!

Hopefully I’ll be able to go more in-depth about each specific month at some point, here at Saloca in Wonderland!

When’s your favourite time to visit Walt Disney World?

Until next time,

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