Somewhere between the first Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party and the start of September, crowds start to dissipate and wait times plummet at Walt Disney World. Welcome to the Disney World slow season.
Every year, like clockwork, the kids go back to school, crowd levels & wait times drop, and discounts are rolled out for the start of fall at Walt Disney World. This year is no exception as COVID-19 travel instability is largely a thing of the past and Disney World has returned to normal. Even the Disney Park Pass system is useless in August & September as it can really only limit crowds, not necessarily magically make them appear. From an increase in Annual Pass discounts to some of the lowest hotel rates of the year, September remains the best month of the year to visit Walt Disney World.
Let’s take a look at the falling wait times thanks to graphs from thrill-data.com to highlight just how much crowds have thinned as we head into the Disney World slow season.
Unlike September, which is generally always slow and a great time of year to visit, August is a little bit heterogeneous in that the first few weeks are still part of a busier summer vacation season, but that wait times drop off before the calendar flips to September. Here’s a look at August 2022 posted wait times by week, and then by day. This data is averaged across all wait times at all four Walt Disney World theme parks.
Wait times are literally cut in half from early August peaks by the end of the month. In short, if you can make a very late August trip work, we’d aim for the closing days of the month leading into September. All August dates are not created equal and booking an “August” trip isn’t nearly as sure of a bet as booking a trip that is in September.
September is shaping up to be another slow month. If we throw out data from 2020 due to the pandemic, and focus on just 2019 and 2021, we can see that September is typically the slowest month of the year in terms of average wait times – and it’s not really close.
Breaking it down even further, here’s a look at the day-by-day averages for 2019 and 2021, respectively.
With the exception of Labor Day weekend, September is the best time of the year to visit Disney World. Wait times will generally build towards October. By the end of the first week of October, the crowds have returned and they will continue to increase until January when we’ll enter another brief slow period before the Spring Break and summer cycles start over again.
For more on the unprecedented patterns we’re seeing across Walt Disney World this week, check out our other articles:
- Unprecedented Lightning Lane Availability for Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance
- Will Unprecedented Virtual Queue & Lightning Lane Availability Lead to Standby Queue Opening for Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind?
As always, keep checking back with us here at BlogMickey.com as we continue to bring you the latest news, photos, and info from around the Disney Parks!