Help with MNSSHP touring plan


#1

Hi Everyone! I’m looking ahead to our next trip and have a few questions about MNSSHP that I’m hoping you can help me with. Here goes…

  1. We are hoping to attend the party on September 30, but haven’t yet purchased our tickets. According to Touring Plans, this party night sold out 1 night in advance last year. I would like to wait a few weeks before purchasing our tickets as we are waiting for some medical news that could alter our plans. Do you think I’m safe to wait until mid-August before purchasing these tickets?

  2. Do all characters meet in Halloween attire? If so, what time does the switch happen? I saw pictures of Mickey in Halloween gear. We are headed to MK that morning and meeting Mickey is a must; however, I’d love to meet him when he is in costume. Should I wait to add this to our evening touring plan? Do other characters who are normally in Magic Kingdom also get dressed up in Halloween gear?

  3. Does anyone have a great MNSSHP touring plan that served them well that they are willing to share? Plugging in rides, the parade, and fireworks is easy; but, I don’t know how to reasonably account for character meetings and trick-or-treating.

  4. Many sites say that trick-or-treating at the end of the night is the way to go. I can understand this, if only so that we don’t have to lug tons of candy around the whole party. However, if I wait until the end of the evening to trick-or-treat will the stations still be open and have candy? How much time would you set aside if the only thing we were going to do at the end is go to each treat station (and not get sidetracked by rides and meet-n-greets)?

Thank you all for your help!!!


#2

Let me try to help:

  1. I am sure you will be fine to wait until mid August. Last year was weird because of the storms.

  2. I really can’t remember. I know I have seen most of the characters from a distance , but I don’t do the meet and greets.

  3. I have always just created a custom plan, but I have always adjusted my plans during the party.

  4. I think trick or treating at the end of the night is a good idea but I would go through the first stop behind a Main Street right away. I would do a few stops after the fireworks/parade. Most stops give you handfuls of candy. Have a backpack to put your bags in!


#3

Thank you so, so much!!! I have already planned on bringing gallon size ziploc bags with the kids names on them so they can dump their trick-or-treat bags and store the loot in a backpack in the hopes of them not growing too tired from caring candy. I might need to think about adding a backpack now based on your feedback! Thank you also for easing my mind about he tickets. I really don’t want to miss out on the party, but can’t yet take the leap to purchase non-refundable just yet. I really hope it works out!


#4

You can always just get another Disney candy bag as well. The candy is usually pretty good sized and high quality.


#5

We went last year and had a great time! We just used the bags provided in the park for candy. It ended up being our treats for the night too along the way. The sugar boosts helped keep everyone going! We still had a big bowlful (we had a kitchen but big gallon ziplock would work)when we got back to our resort (we combined everyone’s loot together). It wasn’t gone by the end of the week and we ended up taking it home.
We didn’t do meet and greets. We wanted to meet Jack Sparrow but lines were long even before characters got there. People started lining up for some at 4 or 5. I’m not sure where Mickey is other than talking Mickey so maybe he is in Halloween gear? Not sure when his costume changes though. Also he doesn’t talk anymore?You used to be able to get a FP for him. If you still can then I would rec doing it.
We actually didn’t follow a strict plan for this party other than we knew when the shows, etc were. We had entered park earlier in the day. At 4, the kids were made into pirates at the Pirates League and we did POC, explored adventureland, then went counterclockwise around park. We ended in Tomorrowland which was my kids favorite part because of the Monsters Inc dance party!
Next time I would not use a park pass on that day and just come in for the party at 4. I rec then making a TP and plug in your 3 FP (schedule at 3:30, 4:30, and 5:30).
One tip is if you plan to stay late then see the second parade. We had walk ons to SM during the first parade.
It was such a blast and so many good memories. Have a great time!

Wanted to add that we didn’t see long candy lines. If there was a line it moved very fast. Also make sure to get candy from Philharmonic because you can sit and watch a few old Mickey cartoons there!


#6

The touring plan depends upon the main focus. Last year we focused on special parades, special shows, and special photopass… The rest was filled in with trick or treating and favorite rides with short lines. We did not have time for special characters meets, the lines were long. We used the MNSSHP with small children with focus on treats. We modified rides and optimized. This worked well as a general guide.

My recollection is many of the characters were in Halloween that I saw. I think mainly the fab 5. I don’t think Moana, 7 dwarfs, lotso were in Halloween attire.


#7

I think that is my biggest issue…I’m not sure what our focus needs to be. Hard to pass up low wait times for rides, definitely want to see the parade, fireworks, and Hocus Pocus show, and hit trick-or-treating…it is the character meets I’m struggling with. How long am I really willing to wait??? I haven’t answered that for myself yet.


#8

We were at a late August party last year It rained on our night and the other party nights when were there and not attending. The four of us did not pass up a treat stop as there was virtually not lines and minimal lines for rides. When we got to Moana meet and greet maybe an hour into party the wait was over two hours. We checked again later and the line was longer so we continued without it. My boys really enjoyed getting handfuls of candy from the cast members even though they were 9 and 12

My backpack and our bags were stuffed with candy from out family of four. We took a picture on our resort bed with our 12YO surrounded with candy. I weighed the candy when we returned and you would not believe how many pounds of candy we still had.

We are going again this year and will likely follow a very similar plan as last year.


#9

We are going to an August party. We will be going for rides, parade and fireworks. Kids have said they don’t want to trick or treat. We will see what the lines are like for characters, they don’t tend to want to wait in lines for characters, if there were to be an exception, it might be Jack and Sally.


#10

I would love to hear how things go for you and your crew! If you remember and have a free moment, let us know details of your party experience.


#11

Hi folks…me again! I’m second guessing my plan for our MNSSHP day. Touring Plans is predicting a crowd level 1 for that day and I planned to rope drop MK at 9:00am, lunch at Liberty Tree at 12:45, and then head back to POFQ at 2:00pm. Originally I was hoping to be back in MK and do a quick dinner at Columbia Harbor House at 5:50pm and then stay to shut down the park at midnight. Now I’m second guessing everything and worried that 2:00pm - 5:50pm is not enough time to get out of MK, get the kids (12, 8, & 7) settled for a rest/nap, and then get into our costumes and back to MK. I was trying to avoid spending too much time on dinner/eating while the party is going on, but I think this turnaround is too fast. Any suggestions on how to make this work better?


#12

Any thought of dropping LTT? I think that woukd give you more time. Or, look at that meal as rest time too?


#13

It definitely crossed my mind, but it is my kids’ favorite place to eat. I am going to set up a reservation finder to see if I can move it to sometime in the 11 o’clock hour that way we can head out after we eat and get more down time at the resort. You know, I do this every trip. I say that I won’t try put too many things in the schedule and then I start adding and adding. This will be our last trip before the annual passes expire and the next trip isn’t even on our radar, so I think I’m feeling the need to soak it all in one last time.


#14

To be honest, that does seem like a pretty tight fit to get any real nap time in. But, if measure of success is to be ready by the actual start of your party night to be closer to 7PM, there may be some time to spare.

Moving LTT to 11AM would definitely give you more advantage in timing.

In my brain, this is your best case scenario as it is now:
:clock2: 2:00 Leave LTT
2:15 Waiting for bus
2:45 Arrive at POFQ
3:00 In room
3:20 Resting
4:30 Up & Getting ready
5:00 Waiting for bus
5:30 Arrive MK
5:50 Through Security & Tapstiles
:clock6: 6:00 At CHH

Issues

  • Assuming only 1:15 from reservation time to leaving LTT is could be tight if busy
  • You could easily take much longer in bus wait times and travel than I put here
  • This plan has you going from waking up to standing at the bus stop in 35 minutes.
    Even with 3 kids who are on top of their game, that’s a tall order, IMHO.
  • By almost 6:00 lines for tapstiles and security could be longish

In reality, I think some of those estimates need padding, so it could turn into:
:clock2: 2:15 Leave LTT
2:30 Waiting for bus
3:10 Arrive at POFQ
3:20 In room
3:40 Resting
4:45 Up & Getting ready
5:20 Waiting for bus
5:55 Arrive MK
6:20 Through Security & Tapstiles
:clock630: 6:30 At CHH

Still not terrible as long as a 1 hour rest and a 7PM start is OK for you.
(You know your kids of course, but I know as a family we get distracted by The Shiny on Main Street, etc. which also slows us down.)

If more rest time is important, I’d either drop/move LTT (which would stink) or try to do something more on the fly for dinner later. (The hot dogs in Liberty Square are good! You just have to fight the squirrels and pointy beak birds who try to sneak in and steal things.)

Although, I realize food you try to do on the fly could easily eat up as much time as just hitting CHH. You could also try to make up some time by mobile ordering before you get to CHH so hopefully you can just grab it when you get there.


#15

This is really helpful! Thank you for putting so much thought into your response. I agree with you whole-heartedly that the turnaround is too tight. My kids definitely do not have their act together and when I look at the second estimate you outlined (which I think is more realistic if not still ambitious) it just further confirms that I need to adjust things. Also, good reminder about mobile ordering. I believe I can do that at CHH, but need to double check that. I also just looked and there are numerous times for LTT in the 11 o’clock hour. so that is an easy fix.

Thank you all so much!!! Now to figure out how to best enjoy MNSSHP. I know it will be a great time!


#16

Do any of you fabulous people have a MNSSHP Touring Plan that you would be willing to share? Would love to see how others have structured their time.


#17

I don’t have a TP, I had must do’s that were characters so I had a different kind of plan.
Just checking that you knew that you can enter the park at 4PM with your party ticket. The park closes for non-park guests at 6 and the party ‘officially’ starts at 7 - but there are really a lot of things that start earlier.
Certain characters, party exclusive merch, some magic shots - all can be done as long as you have your party wrist-bands.
With the price of the party and the long lines that form for so many things, going earlier if you can really makes sense.
There are lines to get in for the party before 4.
I stood in line for characters that started before the party, did my shopping before the party, and did some of the magic shots before the party.
I like to watch the parade either near Country Bears, or Hall of Pres. You can find a spot there 15-20 min before it starts and still have a decent view. The hocus pocus show is AMAZING, but it is crowded, so you have to decide how long you want to wait to get a good view. I went to the last show of the night which is at 11:59 - but that might not be realistic for you.
I am honestly not a huge fireworks person - and the projections on the castle are not as integral as they are for HEA and is also very crowded, so depending on how much you like them, you could view them from somewhere besides the hub so you don’t have to spend so much time waiting for them.


#18

That is a really good idea about shopping before 7pm. I had planned to hit the shops after midnight, thinking that stores would be open after park close like they typically are. But I could see doing this before too. Since we are hitting MK that morning, I wanted to make sure that we had enough down time at the resort before we head back into the park. I don’t anticipate getting back until 5:30pmish. Meeting characters aren’t that high on my list because I know my crew won’t want to stand in line for so long. It will be especially hard as I’m the only adult in the party so if there needs to be an emergency bathroom break while in line it will be challenging. I’m thinking as long as we see all of the shows, visit the dance parties, try to take pictures with characters who don’t have super long lines, hit the treat stations, and maybe ride a few rides then it will be a success!