The LIE Everyone is Saying About Disney World Right Now

We live in a digital age, where you can learn a lot about Disney World and plan your vacation online!

Hollywood Studios

You may read blogs or watch YouTube videos, and you may get advice and comments from family and friends who’ve been to the parks in the past.

But beware of those internet comments — there’s one lie that has been spreading about Disney World recently!

2021 Was An Unusual Year for Disney World

All throughout 2021, the theme parks were recovering from the pandemic, and to this day, they still are. During the closures, Disney lost billions, and they’re slowly making up that money. They didn’t post a profit for five quarters, finally making profit again in Q3 of 2021. 

Animal Kingdom

Also throughout 2021, things were slowly reopening in the theme parks. Several hotels reopened, along with a host of fan-favorite restaurants and offerings. At the same time, health and safety measures changed multiple times.

Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort reopened

But on top of all that, there was some controversy. In 2021 alone, Disney World discontinued Magical Express and free MagicBands, raised prices on Annual Passes (and revamped the system), and introduced the paid Genie+ as a replacement for the free FastPass+.

Magical Express

People Have Been Mad at Disney

Thanks to those big changes, many guests have been upset with Disney in the past several months. Price increases and lost perks don’t exactly make for happy fans. Many people even noted that they would be “boycotting” the parks, even going as far as canceling already booked trips. SO MANY people are saying that they’re not going to the parks, so it seems as though no one is at Disney World right now…but is that really true?

Goodbye FastPass lane, hello Lightning Lane!

Crowd Levels Were Not What You’d Expect

Many people may have canceled their trips, but the theme parks are still as busy as ever. In 2021, it was absolutely packed, starting in October and lasting throughout the end of the year. Crowds were a little weird for the 50th, with mostly Magic Kingdom busy, but it really picked up for Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and the New Year. 

Holiday season crowds at EPCOT

How Have Crowds Affected the Parks?

So what effect do those crowds have on the parks? For starters, they make the wait times much higher for rides and attractions. And with those high wait times, Genie+ becomes more popular. As more guests buy Genie+, the Lightning Lane windows get booked up earlier in the day, meaning that it’s harder to get the reservations you want.

Crowds in Magic Kingdom

And speaking of reservations, many dining reservations have been hard to come by, with not nearly as much last-minute availability as there was previously. With dining reservations booked up, Mobile Order windows tend to disappear early in the day — meaning that you may need to place your order hours in advance.

Mobile Order signage at Aloha Isle

You know what else you’ll need to do early in the day? Purchase your Individual Attraction Selections! Popular rides (like Rise of the Resistance) tend to sell out early in the morning, sometimes even before the park opens, since Disney Resort guests get to make those selections at 7AM.

Rise of the Resistance Lightning Lane Entrance

During these crowded times, we’ve also seen a huge decline in Disney Resort availability. You may have a hard time booking Standard category rooms at most hotels, with only the more expensive options available.

Some popular hotels book up quickly.

So What Does it Look Like Going Forward?

So what does all of this mean for your trip and the future? First of all, you should know that certain times of the year will be busier, including holiday weekends, runDisney races, and big events like ride openings and festival start days. 

Festival opening days will be very busy.

If you do happen to find yourself in an unexpectedly crowded park, then make sure to check out our tips for handling crowds. We always recommend arriving early in the morning to make the most of your park time, and planning your priorities ahead of time doesn’t hurt! But most of all, don’t worry — you can still have an amazing trip when it’s busy.

Crowds in Animal Kingdom

We’ll keep you covered with all of the latest tips on how to plan your Disney World vacation, so stay tuned to AllEars!

Click Here for Some Great Tips On How to Deal With Crowds!

Have you ever been to Disney World when it’s crowded? Tell us in the comments!

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5 Replies to “The LIE Everyone is Saying About Disney World Right Now”

  1. Sorry for my ignorance, I reread this article and still am not sure what the actual alleged “LIE” is. I don’t believe it is anything near a falsehood to state that Disney has become much more expensive while providing nearly none of the previous perks, something many people call “shrinkflation”. Just because Disney hasn’t posted a profit until Q4/2021 doesn’t mean they aren’t making high percentage profits from park customers and it could be claimed that maybe Disney is the one telling a LIE. Bake in the costs of recently finished high dollar attractions, Tron construction, StarWars Hotel (possible huge money pit), Ratatoille attraction, plus all the other 50th Anniv. updates, along with start up of Genie(+) and you have a huge “write off” for the expense column of the ledger. It could be argued that even without Covid impact, Disney was going to be hard pressed to post a profit during all the ramp up to the 50th Celebration. As I’ve stated before, IF Disney is near full capacity in Q4 and still can’t throttle crowds, it is clear that they have failed to build enough PARKS, not enough ATTRACTIONS and this points to a huge failure in top management. New attractions may absorb a number of park customers, but I doubt they offset the additional draw to the parks that are already overcrowded. Only additional parks or park space will achieve the problem of too many people in too little space, and that’s NO LIE.

  2. Disney has totally ruined what was a really truly magical experience. We were there in October 2021 and cancelled our trip in January 2022. The costs have gotten prohibitive and it crazy to pay double to get on a ride. We’re over their greed.

  3. Just got back from the world. Went 12/26-01/02. Definitely no boycott noticed! We came knowing full well it would be our most expensive trip to the World ever, and it was! It was also an amazing trip and we will return again and again. No one does it like Disney. Is it too expensive?? It really just depends on what works for the individual. I’ll save for two years and go again when trim and Guardians are open.

  4. Comparing wait times from November 2021 thru January 2022 with November 2019-January 2020, the most recent months have had lower wait times. This could be due to lower attendance, or Disney capping numbers with their reservation process, or could be wait times are down because not every person is paying for Genie+ or individual Lightning Lane access while nearly every person was using the free Fastpass+ system prior to the pandemic’s start.

    But there is definitely not a boycott going on. Those who are the most upset by all the changes at Disney (mainly price increases and reduced service) are screaming the loudest on the message boards. While many are denouncing Disney and promising never to return, it would not surprise me if those same trolls are making anti-Disney rants one week, then going to the parks the next!

  5. I’m not even a little surprised that attendance and resort bookings have not dropped. In fairness, maybe “lie” is a strong word. I think bias confirmation is more accurate. If you’re a hard core WDW fan you spend a lot of time on this and other Disney centric sites. And it’s easy to lose sight that people on these sites are not even close to representative of the “average” WDW vacationer. While all these changes might be disappointing, Disney Corp. will not change them because a couple 1000 people on message boards are upset. Or even 100,000, not when they get that in one days attendance.