First Timer - MNSSHP or Epcot?

We are planning our first trip to Disney the last week of October (DH, DS (7), DD (6)) . Travel to Disney will take about three hours so we plan to arrive around 11am on October 29th. On arrival day, should we attend MNSSHP or go to Epcot due to the Evening Extra Magical Hours? We are staying onsite at WL and plan to relax until mid-afternoon before heading to a park. CL is predicted at a 3 for both MK and Epcot. We are not huge into Halloween but want to make the best use of our time. Appreciate any advice!

If there are rare characters you/your family would like to meet (Moana, Jack and Sally, all 7 Dwarfs at once, etc.) then I’d go MNSSHP. But know that it will be busy being that close to Halloween.

Otherwise, Epcot would be a good option…as long as you’re ok with burning a full day’s ticket on a partial day.

How many total days will you be in the parks?

Total of 5 days including arrival day. No rare characters we “have to see” during the Halloween party. Looking for the best limited crowd/ride times.

I vote party.

Only going to Epcot for a few hours as a first timer doesn’t feel like a good match. On the other hand, the party may spoil you and give you unrealistic expectations of Magic Kingdom. But I still vote party because you will maximize the rides in a short period of time. Note - not all rides are open, but most are. I don’t recall which ones are closed though…

We enjoyed MNSSHP so much last year that we are repeating it again this year. We rode everything we wanted - some multiple times. I would suggest skipping 7DMT during the party and ride it with a fast pass on a different day. It will suck up too much party time. We didn’t do any special character meets and only collected candy for about the first 30-45 min.

See the 2nd parade! We watched Hallowishes at 10:15, then made our way down Main Street and watched the 11pm parade from town square. We ended up with curb spots.

Plan on sleeping in the next day, or at the very least taking the next day pretty slow unless your kids are night owls.

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I vote party, as well. Epcot will be crowded because it’s the only park that still has night time EMH at that time and there just isn’t as much to do there, IMO.

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I am sure you have looked at the prices for MNSSHP for the time you plan on going. There at there highest except for Halloween itself. Now if you don’t mind spending the money for little or nothing extra except the atmosphere, Go for it. My wife and Grandson and myself went last year on the end of Aug. and paid $85 per person. The time you are talking is $115 per adult and I believe $100 per child. We will be there this year in October but we can’t justify the cost for such a short time. As you said Halloween is NOT a big deal for you, I would think twice before spending the extra money that you could use elsewhere. Just my thoughts on the matter.

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I would normally say MNSSHP, but with your proximity to Halloween I would have to double think it based on the expected crowd level.

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I’ll be at mnsshp on the 29th. id say do that unless you already have park passes and 1 day would be wasted… you do know mnsshp is extra?

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That will be a busy party night. And the 5th park day is cheaper than the party ticket, so that’s what I would choose.

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Yes I know it’s extra. We had planned to purchase the Halloween ticket but when we saw the extra magic hours we were questioning whether to purchase a fifth park day ticket.

Thank you very much for each response! Each one is greatly appreciated and we will take each one into consideration. You all are awesome!!

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and we are all shy about voicing our opinions :dizzy_face: good luck with your choice

We did the party last August. I had these big ideas about short lines (we don’t celebrate Halloween, so that’s the only reason we were going). I was wrong. There was rain and nothing had a short line. My whole touring plan was shot. We still had a great time, but just know that the parties are unpredictable when it comes to crowds.


@kerrilux brings up a great point - weather.

We’ve done MNSSHP twice. The first time was perfect and we got to see what I consider the highlight of the night, The Headless Horseman. We also got to meet Jack & Sally at the very end of the night with minimal wait.

The second party unfortunately was on a somewhat rainy day. If the pavement is wet at all, the Horseman doesn’t ride. That really was a bummer.

If it rains on your party day, you may be able to request a refund. But usually guest services will offer you a different party night instead.

So, long story… the weather is an x-factor to consider.

Congrats on staying at WL. You will be spoiled for other resorts! It is the best and you will love it.

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Is there a way to see what the predicted crowd level of parties?

Here’s a link with a ton of info:

MNSSHP touring plans info

They say the price of the tickets is somewhat indicative. And weekdays are better than weekends.

Thanks so much!

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Hoop de Doo is another great option for arrival day and very convenient if you are already at WL… just sayin.

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