Comparing Labor Day 2020 crowds to Dec 2020 and Feb 2021 crowds

So, my family was at WDW over the past Labor Day weekend, when all 4 of the parks were “at capacity”, meaning they ran out of park passes. The crowd levels for all of those parks was listed at level 2.

Looking ahead to December and February, our next planned trips, most crowd level predictions start at a 2 and head up from there.

I’m wondering if the 1-10 scale has been tweaked somehow to reflect post-COVID attendance levels. Were the September crowd levels comparing to pre-COVID attendance, and the later ones comparing to post-COVID maximum attendance?

Or in other words, is a level 10 park crowd in December the same as a level 2 park crowd over Labor Day, or somehow five times worse?

Since the Labor Day crowds were too much for my family to deal with, if December and February going to be at least as bad in every park almost the time, that’s two trips we have to cancel, so any input would be greatly appreciated!

IIRC a 1 is a 1, and a 10 is a 10, whether viewed from a pre-or-post Covid timeline. This was a deliberate decision by TP so as to keep things consistent and unmuddled.

Remember that CL is directly and only tied to wait times for specific rides within a given park and are not reflective of the actual number of people in said park.

1 Like

This being said, the assumption has been made in other threads that parks SEEM more crowded because not as many attractions, meet and greets, restaurants, diversions are open. Therefore crowds are not dispersed as much and somehow average wait times for rides are not terrible.

Exactly.

They are “presumably” seeing more people in the parks who have nowhere to go AND are not waiting in lines (perhaps because they are longer than they would prefer to wait?)

I am wondering if WDW thinks people will just wait in lines no matter what – limiting the necessity to expand other operations to spread folks out - but it seems that isn’t the case (I mean, certainly with this group but we are “exceptional”)

3 Likes

I haven’t been this year, but I’ve read every trip report post on these forums from those that have. I’ve read blogs and articles from multiple sites. To me, it doesn’t look like it’s going to be any better any time soon.

There’s not enough to do to spread out the people and Disney has cut back on the CM’s working. You have a staff of 2 - 3 doing jobs usually done by 6 - 8.

The 25% capacity “limit” currently being adopted by the parks is typically the number of people that would traditionally go in most days in the past. That figure based on what the parks could hold at their maximum. 25% of that maximum number is still a very busy day, but it “sounds” like less when it’s phrased that way.

IMHO - It’s going to be a long while, even after fully reopening, before the CLs come back to historical trends. Once they reopen fully there’s probably going to be a flood of people who skipped a 2020 trip that want to reschedule & all the excitement of the 50th Anniversary on 2021.

3 Likes

Agree with all that’s been shared.

Even though, WDW offered park passes up to a specific number, I feel they were not prepared for the reality of queue/wait issues with all the other offerings that are not currently happening. Bring those CM’s back and safely open more things up!

Also keep in mind. As was said, the Crowd Calendar levels are based on attraction wait times. Standby Wait Times, that is. These standby times are similar to or shorter than pre-covid. The problem is we were all used to FP+ and had minimal waits especially when factoring in extra drops. C’mon Disney!

1 Like

Also keep in mind. As was said, the Crowd Calendar levels are based on attraction wait times. Standby Wait Times , that is. These standby times are similar to or shorter than pre-covid. The problem is we were all used to FP+ and had minimal waits especially when factoring in extra drops. C’mon Disney!

That is an excellent point. So, for USO the crowd numbers would be the same pre and post lockdown. For WDW person who only got 3 fast passes, the crowds would feel very similar. For a WDW Liner, the same crowd numbers would feel much more oppressive.

1 Like

So simple math for my simple brain…
25% based on the normal capacity for that day
Ex.
Mon normally 40K people - so capacity set at 10K
Sat normally 80K- so capacity set at 20K
Am I thinking about that correctly? Appreciate the info ya’ll are providing. My Mother-In-Law really wants to go after Christmas, but I’m trying to explain to her the cost/benefit and want to give her the best info so she can make an educated decision. Also, looks like DS is not in play anymore for that time period unless you have an annual pass.

Per @SteveBloom 's blog, that 25% is based on maximum capacity (like Christmas when they start doing phased park closings).

2 Likes

Welcome!

The way I understand the capacity restrictions, it is not based on actual daily attendance in the parks. It is based on the maximum number the parks could hold. WDW has never officially released this info, but it’s been calculated / estimated by Touring Plans.

Here’s the estimated capacity for each of the parks:

MK - 90K

EP - 110K

AK – 60K

DHS – 60K

For example, TP estimates that “capacity” for Magic Kingdom is 90K. This means 25% is 22,500 for that park. WDW then divides that number up between resort guests & APs to book park reservations. (That number of park reservations per category is unknown & seems to be arbitrary.) WDW has been releasing more AP reservation slots as resort stays are down.

2 Likes

Welcome! Maximum capacity never changes, therefore WDW target percent of that will not change based on time of year or the number of guests.

2 Likes