Planning a vacation is difficult enough as it is, and perhaps you are wondering “When is the best time to visit Disney World?” To figure out when you should go to WDW there are many factors you need to take into consideration and in this guide, we’ll explain when the best time to go to Disney World is in 2023 & 2024 including the best and worst months ranked.
Even though there is never really a bad time to go to Disney World, picking the right time can make the experience all the more magical. We’ve visited in every season of the year for as long as we can remember and though we always have fun, there are definitely certain times of the year when Disney World is better.
Most people say that the best times to go to Disney World are when the crowds are the lowest. While that is a big factor, there are so many more things to consider besides that. We think a Disney World Crowd Calendar is very important, but it’s only the first step in deciding when to go.
What is the best time in Disney World for the weather, the cheapest time, the best events, etc? What about the park hours, special events, and festivals? A combination of all of these things should weigh heavily on deciding the best time of the year to visit and not just when the crowds are the busiest.
In this post, we’ll talk about the best times to go to Disney World in 2023 & 2024, though the majority of the information can be applied to planning your Disney trip in most years. We rank each month from best to worst and break down some of our favorite weeks and days, and which ones to avoid.
If you are undecided about which year to visit Disney World, we wrote a post explaining if you should visit Disney World in 2023 vs 2024 and all the pros and cons of each year.
Also, don’t forget to sign up for our FREE Weekly E-Mail Newsletter. There we bring you the latest Disney vacation planning tips and news so you’ll know the best and worst times to go to Disney World. You can sign up here: Join our E-Mail Newsletter!
Before we get started, we want to tell you there isn’t one best time to visit Disney World for everyone. People will have different opinions, with certain things being more important than others.
We want you to look at all the factors and make the decision that is going to best fit your needs and then choose when to go. Let’s dive in!
Table of Contents
Disney World Update in 2023
Talk about a crazy world that we are living in right now. Trying to figure out when to go to Disney World is always hard, but the last couple of years have been the hardest ones in the history of Walt Disney World. When Disney World closed back in March 2020, so many things completely changed when trying to plan your vacation.
Thankfully, most of the most difficult changes have come and gone. You probably heard about all sorts of Safety Guidelines and Restrictions in the parks since then such as face masks, personal distancing, etc.
You’ll probably be happy to know that those are a thing of the past, and while some changes like Park Pass Reservations, have remained, we are much closer to a normal Disney World experience than we are away from it.
If you are reading this post you fall into one of two categories:
- Comfortable traveling and want to visit Disney World ASAP
- Still on the cautious side and not traveling right now
No matter which category you are in, I don’t blame you and understand how you feel. Either way, there are multiple factors making this hard to do at the moment. Potential travel fears, unemployment, and the worsening economic situation all play a role.
Walt Disney World reopened in July 2020, but I have to say from my own experience there during dozens of visits since, they have really done an excellent job in making it the safest environment you could hope for, given the situation of the past few years.
Even though there are many changes that factor into your vacation right now, including some entertainment and experiences still not back at the moment, we’ve really had a great time in these past couple of years and have found the Disney Cast Members going above and beyond to try to make the best guest experience possible right now.
Unfortunately, gone are the days when Disney World first reopened and crowd levels were at all-time lows. In some ways it was the best time to visit in a long time because you could literally walk on to any attraction in less than 30 minutes, something I’ve only seen before hurricanes. That has come to a screeching halt and crowds are back almost to normal levels.
Also, it can be confusing and hard to know if you are getting a good value for your trip. Some people might decide it’s not worth it right now and avoid going altogether. This has been an increasing sentiment among Disney fans after all the recent price increases we just had.
Obviously, this is going to be your call and you must decide if it’s within your budget to visit Walt Disney World at the moment and if it’s worth your hard-earned money. We can say from our experience that things are mostly back to normal and despite some small inconveniences, it’s been an overall good experience over the last few years.
You also won’t see empty parks this year as you did in Summer 2020 and there should be more normality in the parks.
Towards the end of this post, we’ve updated our rankings of the Best Months to Visit Disney World, taking into consideration the park closure up to this point. We’ll keep you updated on all this as we find out more info.
In the meantime, here are a few posts to put the Closure and Reopening phases of Walt Disney World into context in case you somehow missed all the action.
- Our post on the Disney World reopening goes more in detail about all the changes since the parks have opened back up and how they are different.
- If you want to know more about when everything shut down in 2020, our Disney World Closure Guide is an interesting read looking back.
- Our post “Is it Still Safe to Visit Disney World Now?” answers most of the safety questions you may be considering.
Now let’s get to all the best and worst times to visit over the next couple of years.
Best Times to Go to Disney World in 2023 & 2024
Figuring out the best time to go to Disney World is often closely connected with the school calendar. It only makes sense that if kids are in school, the parks tend to be less crowded, if they are out of school the crowds will be heavier.
This is no different in 2023 or 2024 and the first step is to look at a calendar and determine when children are least likely to be in school.
As much as people want to look to crowd calendars to figure out when to visit, they are often unpredictable and require a closer look at what’s happening throughout the year. Now that Disney World is almost back at 100% again, let’s look at the recent past.
One important consideration is the construction and debuts of new attractions. Whenever new lands like Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge or new attractions open, there is always an immediate influx of guests to the parks, no matter what season it is.
For example, when Rise of the Resistance opened it would have normally been the “off-season” at Disney World. Instead, it turned into a planning nightmare with people waiting in line at Hollywood Studios for hours before the park opened every day.
This repeated itself with the opening of Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway in Hollywood Studios, Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure, Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind in EPCOT, and Tron: Lifecycle Run in Magic Kingdom.
That is why you need to take a balanced approach when deciding the best time of the year to go to Disney and consider the weather, park hours, crowds, special events, and entertainment altogether.
Choosing when you’ll visit based on a mix of weather, special events, seasonal entertainment, and crowds is a more pragmatic and balanced approach.
In general, we find that January and September are the best months to visit Disney World.
These have the best balance of crowds, cost, and weather. Kids are very likely to be in school during both of these periods and therefore the crowds will be low and Disney will have some nice offers on vacation packages.
The best times to visit Disney World in 2023 are:
- Jan 2-12, Jan 23 – Feb 9
- Feb 27 – March 3
- April 17-28
- May 1-12 (Weekdays only)
- August 14-31
- September (minus Labor Day weekend)
- Most Weekdays in October (except Columbus Day Week)
- Nov. 1-16 (avoid Veteran’s Day and Thanksgiving Week)
- Weekdays from December 1-15 (avoid Christmas and New Year’s)
As you can see, we avoided all major holidays like Easter, Thanksgiving, and Christmas, and also Spring break when the crowds are very high.
The Fall is usually an ideal time to go as parents don’t like to take their kids out of school in the first couple of months of school. This makes for a great opportunity to go.
2023 is a unique year because in the first few months, the 50th Anniversary celebration was wrapping up and we saw larger than usual crowds. The Walt Disney Company is celebrating its 100th anniversary at the end of 2023, and there will surely be plenty of festivities for that as well. Just how much remains to be seen.
The best times to visit Disney World in 2024 are:
- Jan 2-11, Jan 22 – Feb 8
- Feb 26 – March 1
- April 8-26
- May 1-17 (Weekdays only)
- August 19-31
- September (minus Labor Day weekend)
- Most Weekdays in October
- Nov. 1-21 (avoid Veteran’s Day and Thanksgiving Week)
- Weekdays in December 1-13 (avoid Christmas and New Year’s)
Again in 2024, we follow the same pattern for the best dates to go to Disney World, avoiding all major holidays and the majority of the Summer.
There will be new attractions opening such as Tiana’s Bayou Adventure which will bring big crowds, and there will still be plenty of festivals to attend and many new rides and attractions to enjoy!
Worst Times to Go to Disney World in 2023 & 2024
The worst times to go to Disney World are when the parks are the most crowded and when the weather is the hottest. You’ll see in the dates below that we skipped all major holidays since that’s the most likely time families will go with kids since they are off from school.
We also skipped most of the Summer, because Central Florida is just too hot and even though you’ll still have a good time, it can be very draining and unpleasant most days.
The worst times to visit Disney World in 2023 are:
- January 1, January 13-18
- February 17-26 (President’s Day)
- March 17 – April 16 (Spring Break & Easter)
- May 26 – August 13
- November 17-26 (Avoid Thanksgiving Week)
- December 15 -31 (Avoid Christmas and New Year’s Weeks)
The 4th of July, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s are always the worst times to visit Disney World.
The worst times to visit Disney World in 2024 are:
- January 1, January 12-17
- February 16-25 (President’s Day)
- March 15 – April 7 (Spring Break & Easter)
- May 24 – August 11
- November 22-30 (Avoid Thanksgiving Week)
- December 1, 13 -31 (Avoid Christmas and New Year’s Weeks)
We follow the same pattern in 2024 as in 2023 and avoid all major holidays and the Summer.
Now again, I don’t want you to think that if you go during any of these times of the year, you will have a bad trip. It’s all about expectations and your personality. A lot of people like going during the holidays, but they realized there will be longer waits than usual.
Usually, if you have a good itinerary, you can still make the most of these “worst days.”
Ready to Start Planning Your Disney Vacation?
If you feel overwhelmed planning a Disney vacation, use an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner such as Show You the World Travel. They are experts on every Disney location and can tell you where to stay, what to do, how to save money, and give you personalized service for your most magical vacation ever!
Crowds and Disney World go hand in hand like Mickey and Minnie, and there isn’t any time of the year when the parks are not busy. Walt Disney World is after all the most-visited vacation resort destination in the world with over 52 million guests annually.
Unfortunately, there is no such thing anymore as a Disney “off-season” and guests have caught on to the times of the year when you used to actually have short wait times for the rides.
Usually, the whole year is busy in Disney World and there are small lulls when the crowds are slightly less, but they are still there. At this point, the only time you can really have walk-on wait times for any decent ride is when there are hurricanes or similar disasters.
Of course, there are outliers like when the parks first were reopened, and when the country is in the middle of a national health crisis. But in a “normal” year there aren’t too many windows without crowds.
However, this doesn’t mean that crowds don’t matter. Finding those times to visit when there are fewer people than normal is still important. It can be helpful because instead of waiting 2 hours for an attraction on the really busy days, you might only have to wait 1 hour during the non-peak times of the year.
It also is helpful when making your dining reservations and it will be a lot easier to score a table at Be Our Guest or Oga’s Cantina if there are fewer people competing with you for one.
Busiest Times of the Year
So when are the busiest times of year in Disney World? Again, follow the kids.
The busiest time to visit is when kids are out of school during holidays or Spring and Summer breaks. Parents are generally more hesitant to have their kids skip school, and therefore have no choice but to schedule a trip during that time.
The busiest holidays in Disney World are Easter, the 4th of July, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s. The crowds usually start coming in 3-4 days before those holidays begin, and stay for 2-3 days after, or at least through the weekend, before returning home Sunday or Monday.
Of these, the absolute busiest you will see at the Magic Kingdom, and the other theme parks are the weeks of Easter, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s. Those should be avoided at all costs in our opinion as there are always wall-to-wall people and the parks often fill to capacity.
Also in 2023, one of the busiest days of the year at the Magic Kingdom will be Halloween (for Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween party), that day always sells out of reservations early.
Lastly, if you go to the parks on the day a new attraction is opening, that also will be extremely busy and we recommend skipping that park and coming back the next day instead.
Least Crowded Times
The least bust times in Disney World are always when kids are in school. The end of August through September tends to be one of the best months to visit because kids have just gone back to school.
January also is one of the least crowded months since kids go back to school after New Year’s. It doesn’t get too crowded again until President’s Week (the 3rd Monday in February).
Thankfully my parents always took us to Disney World in September, and though the teachers were not always happy about it, very rarely were the parks too busy.
It’s also important to know the least crowded Days to go to Disney World. As a general rule, weekdays are less crowded than weekends. This is especially true in EPCOT if one of the festivals is going on.
Best Way to Save Big $$$ on Disney Resorts
Cheapest Time to Visit Disney World
Finding the cheapest time to go to Disney World can be an even bigger motivator than basing your decision on the crowds. Thankfully, these two are also connected and the cheapest time to go is also when the crowds are the lowest. Disney knows this which is why there are always offers to try and entice guests to visit during those times.
Going to Disney World when the cost is lowest will save you money on hotel rooms, theme park tickets, airfare, and even food. You could potentially be saving thousands of dollars just by changing the dates.
- The cheapest times of the year to visit Disney World are August, September, and January after New Year’s is over into early February.
Since crowds have slowly been shifting from the Summer months into October/November, we’ve also noticed good deals on certain dates in June and July so that’s worth considering.
Our guide to the Cheapest Time to Go to Disney World is invaluable in helping you pick dates if you are on a budget.
Also, read our post “How Much Does a Disney World Vacation Cost?” for the average price of a Disney Vacation, and then look at our Best Disney World Money-Saving Tips to reduce the cost as much as possible.
Going at a cheaper time is going to save you the most money on your hotel room. Prices can vary greatly between the Low Season and the Peak Season, and some rooms can cost as much as 2 or 3x the normal price.
Here are some examples of Disney World hotel prices and the differences when comparing the Low Season with Peak Season. We’ve separated these into examples from the Value, Moderate, and Deluxe Resorts of some potential prices.
- Value Resorts (Low Season) around $130-$200 per night
- Value Resorts (Peak Season) up to $300+ per night
- Moderate Resorts (Low Season) around $260-$300 per night
- Moderate Resorts (Peak Season) up to $400+ per night
- Deluxe Resorts (Low Season) around $500-$800 per night
- Deluxe Resorts (Peak Season) up to $800-$1000+ per night
Those are huge savings and can’t be ignored!
Hotel rooms always cost more on the weekend, so if you are going for more than 7 days, try to only include Friday and Saturday once and this will save you money.
In the last few years, Disney World has introduced a surge pricing model for their theme park tickets, much like they already do with hotel room prices. As the crowds get bigger, park tickets get more expensive. When there are slower periods for crowds, Disney drops the ticket prices.
This means if you come in January or September, you will find the cheapest prices, whereas coming during the holidays like Thanksgiving or Christmas will have the most expensive tickets.
Pricing is done from day to day, which means a Saturday ticket in a “slower” month like September can still be higher than a weekday in a busier month like July. The same month can have 3-4 different prices for tickets depending on which day you go.
Prices for all 4 Walt Disney World Theme Parks are the same so it doesn’t matter if you go to the Magic Kingdom, EPCOT, Hollywood Studios, or the Animal Kingdom, the price is the same.
Here are some ranges between the lowest and highest prices for Disney World Base Tickets in 2023 (Taxes NOT included):
- 1-Day Tickets: $109-$189
- 2-Day Ticket Cost: $107 – $155 per day ($214 – $310 total)
- 3-Day Ticket Cost: $107 – $149 per day ($321 – $447 total)
- 4-Day Ticket Cost: $106 – $141 per day ($424 – $564 total)
- 5-Day Ticket Cost: $91 – $122 per day ($455 – $610 total)
- 6-Day Ticket Cost: $78 – $106 per day ($468 – $636 total)
- 7-Day Ticket Cost: $69 – $94 per day ($483 – $658 total)
- 8-Day Ticket Cost: $65 – $86 per day ($520 – $688 total)
- 9-Day Ticket Cost: $60 – $78 per day ($540 – $702 total)
- 10-Day Ticket Cost: $56 – $72 per day ($560 – $720 total)
Here are the same ranges for tickets but in 2024 (Taxes NOT included):
- 1-Day Tickets: $109-$189
- 2-Day Ticket Cost: $115 – $171 per day ($230 – $342 total)
- 3-Day Ticket Cost: $118 – $168 per day ($354 – $504 total)
- 4-Day Ticket Cost: $116 – $160 per day ($464 – $640 total)
- 5-Day Ticket Cost: $100 – $144 per day ($500 – $720 total)
- 6-Day Ticket Cost: $86 – $127 per day ($516 – $762 total)
- 7-Day Ticket Cost: $76 – $112 per day ($532 – $784 total)
- 8-Day Ticket Cost: $71 – $101 per day ($568 – $808 total)
- 9-Day Ticket Cost: $66 – $91 per day ($594 – $819 total)
- 10-Day Ticket Cost: $61 – $84 per day ($610 – $840 total)
A family of 4 can save more than $200+ on 1-Day tickets by going in the off-season instead of peak season. They can save almost $600 on 5-Day tickets by going in the value season! If you are really interested in saving big, check out our Discount Disney World Tickets Guide.
Cheapest Discount Disney World Tickets
One way you’ll save money on food by not going to Disney World during peak season is taking advantage of special promotions like Disney Free Dining. This is an offer Disney releases multiple times a year to draw people to the resort when crowd levels are projected to be lower and can save you money overall.
During this promotion, you get the Disney Dining Plan included in your package without having to pay extra. In our guide to Disney Free Dining, we post the latest offers and the pros and cons of using it.
Disney JUST recently released information on the Disney Dining Plan, which was just released. For more information, check out my post here.
By going to Disney World at the right time, you can also score some great deals on airfare to Orlando International Airport. Just as with the crowds, the best deals are usually found in September or in January after New Year’s and into February.
We like to use Skyscanner or Southwest to search for the best deals, and it will depend on which airport you have near your home.
An underrated factor in deciding when to visit Walt Disney World is the park hours. While the parks may be less crowded during the off-season, park hours are going to be much shorter which means you have less overall time to spend in the parks each day.
Disney World park hours are the shortest after New Year’s Day in January and stay short until Spring Break starts in mid-March.
Park hours are extended in March through mid-August when they start shortening again. They stay short in September and October and then get longer around Thanksgiving and Christmas.
In January the Magic Kingdom typically closes at 8:00 pm or 9:00 pm. Hollywood Studios is usually open until 8:00 pm or 8:30 pm, and the Animal Kingdom closes early, usually by 7:00 pm. EPCOT stays open until 9:00 pm.
In July the Magic Kingdom closes between 10:00-1:00 depending on the day, while the other parks close between 9:00-10:00 pm.
So while going during the busy season will definitely have more people, Disney makes up for it somewhat by giving people more time in the parks. If you like to stay out late, this can be an advantage that you can use.
However, if you typically go to bed on the early side and won’t take advantage of the late park hours, then a time like January or September is definitely better.
These articles have all the info about park hours, early entry, and how late you can stay in the parks:
When is the Best Weather in Disney World?
Disney World has great weather for most of the year with plenty of sunshine and warm temperatures almost year-round. The Florida sunshine is definitely positive, but the extreme heat and humidity that comes with it, not so much. That’s why finding out when the weather is best in Disney World can make your trip infinitely better.
The weather in Disney World can be extremely unpredictable, with temperatures in the 90s and a blazing sun one minute, followed by severe thunderstorms and lightning the next, only to see the sun come back out 30 minutes later. On rare occasions, you can even get hurricanes in Walt Disney World. The only thing you won’t find is snow!
Packing for the weather is key when visiting and depending on when you go, you could need clothes for the heat, rain, and even at times a sweater or jacket. Here is an overview of the weather in Disney World for each season.
Weather in Disney World by the Season
Winter – The majority of the year is t-shirt and shorts weather, but in the winter months, it can be chilly some days, and definitely at night. At that time of year, a jacket and sweater are both good ideas, yet bringing lighter clothes in case the temperatures are mild.
The average daytime high temperature in Dec, Jan, Feb, and March is in the low 70s. This is actually good news and we prefer to visit the parks when the weather isn’t as hot as in the Summer. The negatives are that it isn’t great pool weather so not as much to do around the hotels. The Resort’s flowers and trees aren’t as beautiful in the Winter and this has the least daylight of any season.
Spring – This is another great time to visit Walt Disney World and if you visit in March/April the average daytime high temperature is in the low 80s. This is good pool weather and good for the parks. Temperatures in May get significantly higher and reach close to 90 degrees.
Another good thing about Spring is it’s not an overly humid time of year with moderately low rainfall. There is also more sunlight in the Spring, which allows for longer hours in the parks every day.
Summer – This is the worst season for weather in Central Florida with extreme heat and humidity on a daily basis. This outweighs most benefits of longer daylight, longer park hours, and more entertainment options than other seasons. Summer lasts from May to September with average high temperatures over 90 degrees, even reaching 100+ degrees on some days.
Humidity is off the charts in the Summer months with an average of 60% or more. Disney World has 13 rainy days per month on average in the Summer, and 6.4 inches of rain.
Fall – Autumn is a beautiful time in Walt Disney World, and though daytime temperatures are still quite high in October, things cool down some in the second half of the month and get even better in November and December. Average daily high temperatures are in the 70s, again great for going to the parks.
Daylight is still good in early Fall, just remember to bring a light jacket or sweater at night as temperatures drop significantly compared to the daytime.
After considering all the various factors, the best weather in Disney World is in the Fall and Spring seasons. This is when you will find a good amount of daylight, lower rain totals, and warm temperatures, but not the extreme heat you find in the Summer.
Out of these seasons, our favorite months for the weather in Disney World are November and March. They are warm enough where you can still go in the pool most of the time, and perfect park weather in the mid to upper 70s.
It should be no surprise that the worst season for weather in Disney World is the Summer.
Unless you live in Florida or have visited Disney in June, July, or August, you will have a hard time understanding just how oppressive the heat can be during this time. Nearly every time you are outdoors during the Summer, you will be sweating profusely, even if you aren’t doing any activity whatsoever.
If you are going to the Disney parks in Summer, we suggest you get an early start to the day by rope-dropping the parks, then go back to your hotel after lunch for a pool break/nap, then make your way back to the parks in the evening. This will help you avoid the excruciating mid-day heat which is unbearable.
Special Events, Festivals and Holidays
Now that we’ve figured out the cheapest times, the least crowded times, and the best weather, you definitely want to look at the calendar for any holidays, special events, or festivals that might be going on in Walt Disney World each month.
There are so many cool events happening each year that you and your family might want to plan your trip around.
Many families plan their trip to Walt Disney World around the holidays, even if it means the crowds are going to be bigger than other times of the year. Easter, the 4th of July, Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas are the most popular ones guests are likely to plan for.
Here is a list of dates for Holidays in 2023 & 2024:
- New Year’s Day – Jan. 1
- Martin Luther King Jr Day – Jan 15, 2024
- Valentine’s Day – Feb 14
- President’s Day – Feb 19, 2024
- St. Patrick’s Day – March 17
- Easter – March 31, 2024
- Memorial Day – May 27, 2024
- July 4th
- Labor Day – Sep 4, 2023, and Sep 2, 2024
- Columbus Day – Oct 9, 2023, and Oct 14, 2024
- Halloween – Oct. 31
- Veteran’s Day – Nov 10/11, 2023, and Nov 11, 2024
- Thanksgiving – Nov. 23, 2023, and Nov. 28, 2024
- Christmas – Dec. 25
- New Year’s Eve – Dec. 31
Keep in mind, if you visit the Disney parks on the exact days of these holidays, you are going to find the biggest crowds all year long. The parks will be overcrowded and they will likely reach full capacity for the day. You have been warned.
A better alternative is to make the days the holidays fall on a pool day or do one of the many other non-park activities during those days, and go to the parks on other days during your trip.
If you have to go to Disney World on a holiday, here are the least crowded holidays for 2023 & 2024:
- Valentine’s Day – Feb 14
- St. Patrick’s Day – March 17
- Labor Day – Sep 4, 2023, and Sep 2, 2024
Special Events and Festivals
Besides the holidays, there are plenty of special events and festivals to keep track of when planning your visit.
Here is a list of all 2023 and some 2024 Disney World Special Events to consider:
- Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend: Jan 4 – Jan 8, 2023
- EPCOT® International Festival of the Arts: Jan 13 – Feb 20, 2023
- runDisney Princess Half Marathon Weekend – Feb 23 – Feb 26, 2023
- EPCOT International Flower & Garden Festival: (March 1 – July 5, 2023)
- runDisney Springtime Surprise Weekend: April 13 – April 16, 2023
- Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party: (Aug 11 – Oct 31, 2023)
- EPCOT International Food and Wine Festival: (July 27- Nov 18, 2023)
- EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays: TBD (End Nov – Dec 30, 2023)
- Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party: TBD (Early Nov – End Dec 2023)
- Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend: Jan 3 – Jan 7, 2024
If you are going from August to December, Disney’s Magic Kingdom runs 2 special hard-ticketed events, Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party and Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party which are very popular with guests.
- TIP: If you are not going to either of these events, then we suggest you avoid the Magic Kingdom on those days as park hours for regular guests will be much shorter than normal. Unless you are only spending a half-day there, in which case the morning and afternoon tend to be less packed than normal.
If it always seems like there is a festival going on in EPCOT, that’s because there basically is. There are 4 yearly EPCOT Festivals, Food and Wine, Flower and Garden, Festival of the Arts, and Festival of the Holidays that run pretty much straight from the end of August through May.
At times in the past EPCOT was without festivals in June, July, and August, but in recent years the festivals have also filled those months. Expect things to be the same in 2023 and 2024 and we don’t anticipate a month without one of the festivals taking place in EPCOT.
Last year, the biggest event was the 50th Anniversary of Walt Disney World. After 18 full months of celebrating, it finally came to a close on March 31, 2023. Instead, at the end of 2023, Disney will be getting ready for the company’s 100th anniversary. We don’t expect it to be nearly as big in WDW, but you should expect some festivities for sure, and potentially elevated crowd levels at certain times.
Overall these events can be really fun and definitely worth planning for your Disney World trip, just realize that many will also have higher crowds, so make sure you know going into it. If you want to go to any of the EPCOT Festivals, go on a weekday, it will be much less crowded.
Refurbishments & New Rides
One thing that might not come to mind when trying to find the best time to visit Disney World is the attraction refurbishment schedule. This is important because there are certain times of the year when Disney likes to do extended maintenance on the rides, which means your favorite could be closed.
The last thing you want to do is show up at Disney and find that Space Mountain or Pirates of the Caribbean is down for refurbishment. How can you do this if you are planning your trip many months in advance?
- The most popular time for big Disney World attraction refurbishments is in January or February.
Disney wants all the big rides open in the busiest periods of the year, which definitely includes the Summer and the Thanksgiving/Christmas holidays. After New Year’s, crowds lessen which is a good time for Disney to work on any rides that need a tune-up. In this case, going to Disney World when the crowds are the heaviest ensures the majority of attractions will be open.
The water parks are also likely to be closed in parts of January and February, so don’t expect to go to Typhoon Lagoon or Blizzard Beach during that time.
As for new rides, the TRON Roller Coaster opened in Magic Kingdom in April, and we look forward to Moana: Journey of Water opening at the end of 2023 in EPCOT. On top of those, EPCOT is getting a new fireworks show again, and Happily Ever After also recently came back in April of 2023.
You also will definitely want to check what’s new in Disney World and all upcoming attractions to see if you can plan your trip around a new ride you’ve been waiting to go on.
Is 2023 or 2024 a Good Time to Visit Disney World?
If you’ve been to Walt Disney World in the last couple of years, or if you haven’t been for many years, 2023 and 2024 are quite different years for planning a trip, and with all the recent changes it has become even more different. You may be wondering if it’s worth it to visit Disney World at all right now?
Here are a few things to consider:
Pros: There are a few big reasons why you should visit right now:
- Things Returning to Normal – This year almost all traces of the restrictions guests had in 2020-2021 are gone and there are even more benefits from visiting Disney World than last year. Most of the attractions options are back and more entertainment options are returning every month.
- Most Safety Guidelines and Restrictions Gone – Guests no longer have to wear face masks in the Disney Parks in any location, even in the indoor locations including on attractions and in common areas of the hotels. And we are especially thankful that you no longer have to wear a face mask in 95+ degree heat, as that wasn’t fun one bit. Also, restrictions like temperature screening and queue spacing are no longer an issue. Read our post on the new changes and guidelines in Disney World for more info.
- Anniversary Parties – The Walt Disney Company’s 100th Anniversary begins at the end of 2023 and we expect to find some more improvements and exciting experiences in the parks. Either way, if you like a good party, 2023 is it.
- New Attractions/Experiences – As we mentioned, TRON opened in April, and Moana: Journey of Water is soon opening, there are 2 new fireworks shows, and we may finally get to see the end of the EPCOT construction project.
Cons: On the other hand, there are still a few reasons why NOT to visit right now:
- Limited Experiences and Attractions – Not all attractions, entertainment, or experiences are available right now, but we are getting much closer to 100% once again. A big one is fireworks shows are now back, but there are still a lot of shows and characters missing. With all the money it costs to go to Disney World, it may not be worth it without them.
- Getting Into the Parks is More Difficult – In order to get entry into the parks, you’ll need a reservation, and not all guests are guaranteed to get one. Park availability has improved over the past year, but you still need to reserve ahead of time or you might not be able to go to the park you want on the day you want. Read more in our post about Disney World Park Reservations.
As you can see, there are quite a lot of things to take into consideration if you are planning on visiting Disney World during the reopening phase. That’s not to say that it won’t be fun, but you should be aware of what to expect before you go.
Best Months in Disney World – Ranked
This is my favorite part, ranking each month in Disney World in 2023 from Worst to Best.
We want to give you a look at each month compared with the others, and take into consideration all the various aspects we’ve already gone over in this guide. These rankings tend to be similar each year but can change slightly depending on how some holidays fall and other events going on.
As a disclaimer, this list looks much different in 2023 than in some years. With new changes in the parks, capacity restrictions, events on hold, and the 50th Anniversary wrapping up, at least a few of these months find themselves either higher or lower than they normally might.
It’s also worth noting that the further into 2023 we go, the more likely things get back to “normal” in the parks. That means potentially more entertainment coming back like shows and fireworks. Those factors weighed into our rankings.
This list could look a lot different in 2024 if everything is back up and running normally by then. We’ll update this list later in 2023 to reflect any changes to the schedule.
Ok, now on to the best months at Disney World in 2023…
Normally July is either the worst or second-worst month to visit Disney World, and that’s where it comes in again in 2023.
Just like in June and August, July is a terrible month for weather in Disney World, with temperatures rarely under 90 degrees and unbearable humidity. This becomes even harder when wearing a face mask.
It’s also one of the rainiest months of the year with over 10 inches annually. Ponchos become your best friends in Disney World in July, and you need plenty of extra socks.
The 4th of July is always one of the busiest days of the year for the parks, and heavy crowds carry on throughout the whole month. This should be the same in 2023, as many families have returned to traveling again, and July is right when kids have off from school.
- Pros: Long Park Hours, Lots of Daylight, Potentially Good Deals
- Cons: Extreme Weather, Higher Crowds
See our guide to Disney World in July for more details.
June hasn’t changed at all from our original list and is always one of the worst months to visit Disney World in 2023.
The weather is excruciatingly hot and humid so make sure to bring sunscreen and a towel to dry yourself off. The rain also picks up in June with approximately 5 inches annually. That means you’re likely to get caught in quite a few thunderstorms on your trip.
Crowds are lighter in the first half of the month and then pick up when kids start getting out of school. On the plus side, June benefits from long hours of sunshine and extended park hours, and entertainment offerings.
In 2023, we expect crowds to be heavy once again and things might be completely back to normal by then. We’ve seen capacity increase significantly, and more entertainment and dining options returned to the parks and by the summer it could be even better.
- Pros: Lots of Daylight, Most Attractions are Open
- Cons: Extremely Hot Weather, High Crowd Levels, Thunderstorms
See our guide to Disney World in June for more details.
What’s different about August from July? Not much in 2023, nor any year for that matter. August has the hottest temperatures of the year in Disney World with just slightly less rain than July, though thunderstorms are still a daily occurrence. You’ll for sure want to spend a good amount of time in the resort pool.
Crowds are usually heavy in early August and then decrease drastically as Labor Day nears. This leads to low wait times on attractions and wonderful hotel discounts.
In 2023 I think this will be the same and even with the EPCOT Food and Wine Festival in full swing and Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party debuting in August, you’ll see very few people in the parks compared to how many will come in September and October.
- Pros: Low Crowds in the Second Half, Potentially Low Prices, Long Park Hours, Lots of Daylight
- Cons: Extreme Weather, High Crowds in First Half
See our guide to Disney World in August for more details.
For many years, April in Walt Disney World fell somewhere in the middle of the pack for us, but in recent years it’s gotten worse. The most important factor when deciding to go in April is finding out when Easter occurs that year.
If Easter is in March, April turns into one of the best months, with very low spring break crowds. If Easter is in April, that becomes less attractive, especially in the first half of the month.
It just so happens however that from now through 2024 Easter happens in April, so you want to avoid the weeks around that as much as possible.
If Easter is early in April though, the second half of the month can be a joy to visit Disney World with warm temperatures and moderate to light crowds. The gardens and flowers are at their best as well, with Walt Disney World perhaps at its most beautiful. Also, since the TRON Lightcycle coaster is opening in Spring 2023, there is a high chance it could already be here in April, or at least preview events.
In 2023 Easter falls on April 9, and if you wait another week and go on the 17th or later, this could be a great month to visit.
- Pros: Great Park Weather, Beautiful Landscaping, Lots of Daylight
- Cons: Heavy Crowds depending on the year
See our guide to Disney World in April for more details.
March is a good to a mediocre month to visit Disney World depending on how Easter falls. If Easter happens in late March, then avoid that time at all costs. If Easter is in April, the first half of March can be a wonderful time to go with spring break crowds hitting in the second half of the month.
The weather in March might be the best you will find all year long. Temperatures are usually in the upper 70s to low 80s and good for any activity you want to do. It also rains very rarely in March in Orlando, which means you don’t have to worry about getting wet.
The EPCOT Flower and Garden Festival also begins in March, one of our favorite events of the year. The TRON Lightcycle roller coaster soft opened in March, so it was a great time to ride before the grand opening in April.
I do have to warn you though, if you go in the second half when Spring Break is in full swing, it can be a terrible time to visit. The crowds are absolutely packed even if Easter isn’t until mid-April.
Overall, March 2022 should be a great time to visit with great weather and low crowds in the first half of the month. Just be selective of your weeks if you decide on March.
- Pros: One of the Best Months for Weather, Beautiful Landscaping, Low Crowds in the first half
- Cons: High Crowds in the second half
See our guide to Disney World in March for more tips and info.
February is another month we’ve had much higher in recent years, but in 2023 we dropped it a few points. Yes, it is a great choice for visiting Disney, especially in the first half of the month. February has some of the lowest crowds all year, and you just need to avoid President’s Day week, which is very busy.
The weather is nice and perfect for visiting the theme parks. Some weeks it’s even warm enough to go in the pool. You also benefit from off-season pricing, again as long as you avoid going around President’s Day.
That said, we went at the end of February last year and it was an absolute nightmare. The crowds were horrible and the lines were more than 60 minutes long for everything, and even using the Genie+ service we weren’t able to do what we wanted to.
Another downside is the water parks are often closed for most of the month, and some attractions may be under refurbishment. That said, February is still one of our favorite months as long as you pick the right week.
- Pros: Great Park Weather, Good Discount, Low Crowds in first half.
- Cons: High Crowds around President’s Day and end of the month, Water Parks Closed, Attraction Refurbishment likely
See our guide to Disney World in February for more tips and info.
In theory, October should be one of the best times of the year as temperatures are lowering and kids should be in school. It used to be one of our favorite months, which now has been dropping lower and lower on our list due to the rising crowd levels. It’s not as bad as during the major holidays, but ride wait times are still very long.
Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party and the EPCOT Food and Wine Festival have a lot to do with October’s popularity with many guests coming to Disney World specifically for those events.
Weekdays are your best bests in October. On the plus side, the temperature is still hot during the day, but much cooler at night than in September.
In 2021 the 50th Anniversary celebration started in October which really jumpstarted the crowds returning that year. Without any huge events like that in 2023, we expect crowd levels to be high, but not as much as the last couple of years perhaps.
Check prices and availability after Columbus Day into the middle/end of the month. If you can go during the week in the second half of the month, October can be one of the best times to visit. For now, as a whole, it lands at #6 overall.
- Pros: Hot but not too hot, Popular Events
- Cons: Rising Crowd Levels, Limited Discounts
See our guide to Disney World in October for more details.
We usually have May in the middle of the pack, as the spring break crowds are gone and there is a slight dip in attendance before school is out and the Summer crowds start pouring in.
The weather gets significantly hotter in May, often reaching into the 90s, though not usually at the “melt-your-skin-off” levels in the Summer. There is tons of daylight in May, and thunderstorms are quite common. Overall as long as you don’t go on the weekends, it’s normally a wonderful time to visit due to the lower crowd levels.
However, instead of increasing crowds in May, the opposite effect has been happening in recent years and it has surprisingly low crowds compared with March and April. Spring Break is over and most children are still in school in May which makes it a beautiful time to visit. And in 2023, TRON Lightcycle Run will definitely be open by then, giving yet another incentive to visit.
- Pros: Low Crowds on Weekdays, Parks are Beautiful, Lots of Daylight
- Cons: Hot and Humid Temperatures
See our guide to Disney World in May for more tips and info.
January is one of our favorite months to visit Disney World because of the light crowds and low prices for the majority of the month. Crowds disappear after New Year’s week which means excellent deals on vacation packages, hotels and park tickets. Also, stay away from Marathon Week if you can.
It also might have the lowest attraction wait times of the year which means you’ll get more done in less time.
The weather is mixed and temperatures are beautiful and great for touring the parks during the day with an average high of 72 degrees. Nighttime can get cold, however, even into the 40s so you will need to dress heavier than normal. We’ll take this any day of the week over the heat in July and August though! Also, very little rain means plenty of sunshine and blue skies.
Don’t expect to do much swimming in the pools, and the water parks are closed. Also, look ahead to Disney’s refurbishment schedule as it’s possible some attractions are down for maintenance.
In our opinion, January is one of the best months to visit Walt Disney World with its outstanding combination of low prices, low crowd levels, and mild temperatures. Give it strong consideration when planning your trip.
- Pros: Low Crowds, Low Prices, Great Park Weather
- Cons: Chance of E-Ticket Attractions being closed for refurbishment, Not Pool-Weather/Water Parks Close
See our guide to Disney World in January for more details.
December is certainly one of the most popular times to visit Disney World, with holiday decorations up and plenty of holiday-themed events happening. However, you will get two completely different experiences depending on the week you choose to go, and it’s subjective to how much you enjoy the holidays.
The beginning of the month has very low crowds once Thanksgiving week is over. It might not be as quiet as it once was because of Disney manipulating blackout dates and trying to fill in the lower-attended weeks of the year. The first couple of weeks is still one of our favorite times and doesn’t have bad crowds.
Once you get close to Christmas week, however, things change dramatically where it quickly becomes the busiest time of the year in Disney World. We would definitely recommend you avoid this week all the way through New Year’s week unless you like to stand in line 3 hours for Space Mountain.
The cost is equally as different with lower prices in early December, and the highest price-gouging all year in Disney World happening from Christmas to New Year’s.
- Pros: Low Crowds (Early December), Seasonal Entertainment, Low Prices (Early December), Long Park Hours (Late Dec)
- Cons: Extremely Heavy Crowds (Late Dec), Exorbitant Prices (Late Dec), Little Daylight
We were torn between November and our number one choice for 2023, but there is no doubt that November is one of the best months to visit Disney World. The reasons why we love it include a great combination of crowds, weather, cost, and seasonal entertainment offerings.
The first half of November is extremely light for crowds, especially during the week. This means low wait times and room to breathe in the parks.
Because crowds are low, Disney usually has some great vacation deals, including the Free Dining promotion which can save you some serious dollars.
November also can’t be beaten for its weather. It has the lowest precipitation numbers in Disney World all year, with less than one inch of rain on avg. Temperatures are fantastic, still warm enough to go swimming most years, yet not too hot to be uncomfortable in the parks.
The seasonal entertainment options are extremely popular as the EPCOT Food and Wine Festival is still going on in the first half of the month, as well as the popular Christmas festivities such as Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party which lasts all month long.
Christmas decorations go up throughout the parks and hotels early on in November which many people come to see.
The only bad time to go to Disney World in November is during Thanksgiving Week and the few days surrounding it. If Thanksgiving happens earlier than normal like the 22 or 23, the last few days of November are also great times to go once the crowds go home. It’s also best to avoid Veteran’s Day weekend.
Again, it’s a toss up, but November is our #2 Month for Disney World in 2023 for its almost unbeatable combo of Price, Crowds, Entertainment, and Weather. Don’t miss it!
- Pros: Perfect Temperatures, No Rain, Seasonal Entertainment Offerings, Long Park Hours (Near Thanksgiving) Low Crowds (First Half of Month), Low Prices (First Half of Month)
- Cons: High Crowds (Near Thanksgiving), High Prices (Near Thanksgiving)
Last year we had September a couple of notches lower, and we realized we were actually crazy for doing that. So in 2023, September returns to the #1 spot for us. It’s very rare that we ever drop it below 3 or 4, and you know it will always be in contention.
September always has some of the lowest crowds all year in Disney World since kids have just gone back to school and parents are reluctant to take them out at the start of the school year.
Disney always has incredible deals in September, with hotel rooms being close to the cheapest you’ll find all year and good promotions like Disney Free Dining. There are plenty of popular entertainment offerings like the EPCOT Food and Wine Festival and Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party both in full swing throughout the whole month.
The only negative is September is still a very hot month, with temperatures often reaching into the 90s and high humidity. The later you go in the month, the less oppressive this is.
September has lots of rain, though usually just a passing storm from 4-5 pm, and then it clears back up. It’s also one of those months where it’s possible to see a hurricane, like our experience when Hurricane Irma hit Disney World in 2017. That is a rare occurrence though, and most years you are fine.
After what we witnessed last year, even if park capacity is back to 100%, in September 2023, we expect the crowd levels to be low as they usually are. And honestly, you won’t find a month with fewer people.
Even though there are some negatives with the weather September is almost always one of the best months to visit Disney World. It should still make for a good time to visit Disney World in 2023, and it’s our personal favorite this year.
- Pros: Very Light Crowds, Historically Great Discounts, Good Daylight, Seasonal Entertainment Options
- Cons: Very Hot weather, Rainy weather, Chance of Hurricanes
See our guide to Disney World in September for more tips and info.
Favorite Weeks to Visit Disney World in 2023 & 2024
Last, but not least, we wanted to share with you what we feel are the best weeks to visit Disney World in 2022 and 2023. If we were planning a trip right now, these are the weeks we would choose above all others.
- Week #3: 1st Week in November – Great combo of perfect weather, low crowds, and good prices that should be back to normal in 2023.
- Week #2: Last Week in September – Always one of the cheapest times of the year to visit and with potentially the lowest crowds all year. You can choose from Mickey’s Not So Scary and EPCOT Food and Wine, so plenty to keep you busy and a great time to visit.
- Week #1: Last Days of November/First Week in December – This week has it all. Popular entertainment, low crowds, low prices, and a beautiful time to visit Disney World.
- Week #3: 1st Week in November – Great combo of perfect weather, low crowds, and good prices that should be back to normal in 2024.
- Week #2: Middle of October – Always one of the best weeks as temperatures cool off slightly, and it has low crowds and low prices. Just make sure you don’t hit it when Columbus Day visitors are there. The end of September is another great chioce as usual.
- Week #1: Last Days of November/First Week in December – Just like in 2024, this remains our favorite week of the year due to all the above reasons for popular entertainment, low crowds, low prices, and the sheer beauty at that time of the year.
While there are many great times to visit Disney World, there is no one “Best” time that stands out way above the others. It comes down to your personal preferences and what you are looking for on your trip.
We personally prefer to go to the parks when the temperature is milder, even giving up our pool time if need be. Our preference is always toward cost and what time of the year will save us money. And we also would rather go when the crowds are lower, even if that means there might be fewer entertainment choices and shorter park hours.
We think one week is a good length of time to schedule also as it gives you at least one day per park and allows you to be flexible if you happen to hit a holiday on one of those days. You can do it in 4-5 days, but you’ll be running like crazy and probably won’t enjoy it nearly as much.
Ultimately there is no bad time to visit Disney World and you will have a great trip no matter when you go. Decide which aspect is most important for you and start planning in the month that suits your needs. I hope this helped, and most importantly, have a very magical vacation!
Jan 2-12, Jan 23 – Feb 9
Feb 27 – March 3
May 1-12 (Weekdays only)
September (minus Labor Day Weekend)
Most Weekdays in October (except Columbus Day Week)
Nov 1-16 (avoid Veteran’s Day and Thanksgiving Week)
Weekdays in December 1-15 (avoid Christmas and New Year’s)
January 1, January 13-18
February 17-26 (President’s Day)
March 17 – April 16 (Spring Break & Easter)
May 26 – August 13
November 17-26 (Avoid Thanksgiving Week)
December 15 -31 (Avoid Christmas and New Year’s Weeks)
The best weather in Disney World is usually in the Spring (March and April) and in the Fall (October and November). Temperatures are warm but not too hot and there is little rain and plenty of sunshine.
Need Help Planning Your Trip?
We know the entire Disney vacation planning process can be overwhelming at times and the easiest way to book your vacation package is to use an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner as they will help you every step of the way. They will listen to your needs and preferences and can help you decide which resort is best for you.
We highly recommend using René Cittadino at Show You the World Travel for your Disney World reservations. That’s who we personally use on almost every trip and they make the experience much more enjoyable.
They will help you to make advanced dining reservations, book special events, and more. The best part is that they are 100% FREE and it doesn’t cost you any more money to use them than it does to book directly through Disney. Instead, they will actually end up saving you money by continuing to look for better deals even after booking your trip.
That wraps up our ranking of the best months to visit Disney World in 2023. We hope that we gave you enough info to figure out which one is the best for your next trip!
If you are thinking about going to Walt Disney World in the coming future, here are some other popular articles where you will find all the info and tips you need to plan your trip.
- Disney World Vacation Planning Guide
- Disney World Crowd Calendar
- Best Disney World Resort Hotels RANKED
I want to know what you think about our choices for the best times to visit Disney World…
- What is your favorite time to go to Disney?
- Which Months or Weeks are your favorites?
Let us know in the comments section below!
If you enjoyed this article, as always I appreciate it if you’d share it with others via social media. I work hard at making this website into a useful resource for you and your family to plan your visit to the Disney Parks and I hope it can help you! Thanks 🙂