Three Experiences to Skip at Walt Disney World this Holiday Season

The holidays are quickly approaching at Walt Disney World! And while Disney has introduced a ton of new holiday experiences like Minnie’s Wonderful Christmas Time Fireworks, new decorations at Animal Kingdom, and new New Year’s dining experiences, we’re here to chat about what Disney holiday experiences are not worth your time or your money.

It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas in Magic Kingdom!

1. New Year’s Eve Events

For those of you looking to stick to a budget, we suggest skipping the over-the-top New Year events that cost bunches of money. Disney has quite a few New Years’ Eve opportunities that you and your family can experience with the purchase of your park ticket, especially now that Disney is bringing the NYE celebration to Disney’s Animal Kingdom.

Tree of Life for New Year’s Eve

So instead of spending $299 at Disney’s Countdown to Midnight: A New Year’s Eve Celebration or any of the other pay-to-play NYE offerings, head to Magic Kingdom, Animal Kingdom, Epcot, or Hollywood Studios for exciting fireworks, attractions, and food that don’t require a separate ticket!

Read more about Disney’s New Year’s Eve offerings here!

2. Magic Kingdom

We suggest skipping Magic Kingdom on Christmas and New Year’s Eve if you aren’t a big fan of crowds. Honestly,  these days can be INSANE with the parks often reaching capacity early in the day. Wait times will probably be long, and you won’t have the opportunity to do or see as much on these days if you choose to visit Magic Kingdom. Instead, we suggest checking out any of the other three parks. It’s pretty likely that you will find smaller crowds and lower wait times. Each park will also be offering fun holiday entertainment and decor.

Minnie’s Wonderful Christmastime Fireworks Show ©Disney

For example, you can check out Jingle Bell, Jingle BAM! and Sunset Seasons Greetings in Hollywood Studios, the Festival of the Holidays in Epcot, and the new decor and holiday version of Tree of Life Awakenings in Animal Kingdom.

Jingle Bell, Jingle BAM!

If you’re hoping to see the Christmas parade and fireworks without paying for a Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party ticket, we suggest visiting the parks a day or two before or after Christmas. Often times, the parade, stage show, and fireworks will take place during normal operating hours!

3. Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party

With this being said, for those of you who are looking to save a little cash, we suggest skipping Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party. While Disney is introducing a handful of new experiences, if it’s anything like Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party this year, you can expect larger crowds and longer wait times then you may have anticipated. (Many of our readers reported that they were very unhappy with the Halloween party this year, so we’re interested to see how the holidays play out.)

Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party

Which Disney World holiday experience will you be skipping this year and why? Let us know in the comments below! 

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6 Replies to “Three Experiences to Skip at Walt Disney World this Holiday Season”

  1. Just watch. Soon, maybe even next year, they’ll make the parties so you have to fast pass them and everything just like during the day, so it’ll mostly negate the benefit of the parties.

  2. I would not be surprised if the Christmas parties are not nearly as crowded as this year’s Halloween parties. The “season pass” that Disney sold for the Halloween parties was likely the worst idea ever. There was no way Disney could tell how many people would show up from one evening to the next and when to stop one-night ticket sales for a particular party. I suspect they will not be offering the season ticket next year.

    1. Sorry, have to disagree. Everyone seems to be laying the blame for the crowds at the feet of the unlimited pass holders… As an unlimited pass holder, I actually was able to skip most soldout nights and even on the few busy nights I did go, I generally went to areas of the park that weren’t as busy and often left early or came late. I know many other party passholders who did the same. While I’m sure not all party passholders were as considerate, the fact remains that the Halloween party sold out 8 parties this year compared to only 3 in 2018 and passholders certainly were not responsible for that.

  3. Early December can be a wonderful time to see the holiday magic at WDW and miss the huge crowds. We recommend taking time to do all the holiday around the world at Epcot events. Missing the MK party, agreed! Doesn’t even compare to the Halloween party. Try to fit in everything else as so much fun.

    1. The key word “CAN”. We went Dec 8-15 last year and it was the most crowded trip we’ve ever taken to WDW! I couldn’t believe how busy it was. The last day in the parks we went to AK – Touring Plans gave a 1 ranking for that day- it was elbow to elbow people. The mobile order for Flame Tree actually stopped accepting orders and the line went into Dinoland. Maybe we’ll try February next time!