I’m curious to know how much all of you rely on the crowd calendar in planning which parks to visit on which days? We’re planning a trip for the week after Thanksgiving so in theory I have time except for the fact that we’re hoping to secure a few ADR’s and that is sneaking up on me. Between the MVMCP limiting my MK choices and the crowd level prediction I change my mind constantly. I love the idea of lower crowd levels but realistically the predictions could change between now and then too.
Here is a recent thread which addresses the same question:
Unless there’s a real outlier on the far extreme of one end or the other I have to say it doesn’t affect us all that much. We are much more directly driven by the fact that we like to do magic kingdom first whenever we can and then the rest of the order tends to follow dining reservations and then by preference of Park
None at all for our upcoming trip in December. Most days are listed as 10 for all 4 parks. Although we are avoiding MK as much as possible since crowds there are awful.
Not at all. I glance at them right at the start but I don’t take them into account in the slightest.
I take many factors into account. The CC is one of the least important to me.
I use it somewhat. Try to pick lower days that coincide with non EMH when staying off property. But also generally go to MK first.
They somewhat inform our choices but mostly we choose what works best for our schedule based on early morning hours and then compare our plan to the crowd calendar to see how good or bad it will be that day.
Never looked at them. Picked our park days over 6 months ago. Have not changed them once.
I don’t rely on the crowd calendar to determine which park to go to. I look at early morning hours and what parks we want to and when we want to do them.
We don’t rely on them much. Usually on a given week the CL for a park only varies 1-2 points and that’s not enough to influence which park we would visit. Now if for some reason one day was a 4 and the others all 10s, that could influence me.
Obviously in the minority here but they play a role in my planning. Makes no difference to me which park I go to first or last. Im not nostalgic in that sense. I avoid parks with high CL’s if possible. While often stated that a good TP trumps a high CL, I’ll still pick the lower CL.
Thank you all this is very helpful! It was suggested on another thread that I plan AK towards the end of the trip or we may not be able to get fast passes for FOP. Do you all use the EMH or avoid them? We won’t have a park hopper if that makes a difference. On Friday November 30th the CC lists MK and HS with a crowd level of a 1 with AK and EP at 5. Is it really possible that it could be a 1?
How I decide:
Are there EMH on any of the days? If yes, try to avoid, as we don’t stay on property. If it can’t be avoided, try to avoid Morning EMH, as we like to RD.
All other things being equal, I will save MK for last. But I have no problem moving it around if the above two factors affect it.
We use the CC at the beginning of or planning. We pick the best time to go in a particular season. Then we will pick our parks based on the CC. Then we stick to our choices and ignore any CC changes that may happen.
I have relied on it with all my trips, including the one in 22 days. But, after not being able to secure FPs at the 60 day mark for the first 3 days of our trip for FOP, that changed everything. I had to switch 3 days around, including changing dinner reservations and I did not factor in CLs at all when making the changes. I wanted to make sure we rode what we wanted and ate where we wanted to eat. Then I created a touring plan on this site that I am very confident about centered around all of our reservations. Just like anything else, crowd levels have different meanings depending on what your plan is. If you are simply going to do something like tour World Showcase and not be concerned about rides, I think CL becomes a top priority. If you can secure the FPs you want and have a great plan in place, it doesn’t matter in my opinion.
I rely on them a lot. But now that they are all shooting up to 9 and 10 in November I’m flummoxed. Pretty sure I’ve never ever used that word before.
I look at CLs first. Then I’ll look to see what is driving those CLs (Is there EMH that day? Is the park closing early for a evening ticketed event? Is it a holiday?) As a dayguest, I immediately eliminate EMH days (or I used to…can’t do that for AK now until end of June or HS for all of July) and parks closing early. Then I chart out all the days I will be in Orlando with the CLs at each park with any days crossed out and determine the best overall days. Sometimes that means going to the lowest CL park each day, and sometimes it may mean going for two moderate days instead of a high and low crowd day depending on how extreme those high and low CLs are.
I also factor in the differences between CLs at Disney and CLs at Universal. A Universal CL7 involves a lot less waiting in line than a Disney CL7.
We always use crowd calendars for planning. In fact, it is generally one of the first and most important tools we use in determining which week to go on vacation. However, typically we consult several different on-line crowd calendars to get a general picture.
We also might arrange our park day decisions based on crowd calendar information if it varies much.
I’ll admit I haven’t used the Touring Plans crowd calendar for Disney. We did use it for Universal this year, but found it was the least accurate of the crowd calendars. The trouble with crowds, however, is that they can be unpredictable, so I do take them with a grain of salt. It is more about getting a general feel for how the week we are going might be.
Which crowd calendars are your favorite? It’s crazy how many different ones I find with a pretty big variation in the predictions.