Late Summer: To Go or Not To Go?


#1

Hey! First-time poster here with a (probably) silly question....

Here's the deal: I visited WDW for the first time this past February and had a blast (yay for solo travel!). I started planning my next trip basically the day I got back. I know that another winter trip is possible, but I don't want to wait that long, haha! My dilemna is that I really, REALLY dislike heat and humidity (and large crowds) so I know that I don't want to visit at the height of the summer season. But I am also a part-time teacher and really can't get away much once school starts. Sooo.... here's what I'm thinkin'....

Take a long-ish trip (~12 days) right at the end of August and into the beginning of September, before school starts for me but when the crowds are apparently much lighter than most of the summer. Spend my mornings and mid-days safe and sound in the cool and comfort of my hotel room and work (in addition to teaching, I also have an online job that I can work from anywhere). Then head to the parks in the late afternoon/early evening and enjoy myself until the parks close. Sleep. Repeat.

Is this even worthwhile or realistic at all? Will I instantly melt when I step out of my air-conditioned hotel at 4pm, or will it be at least somewhat cooler once the sun isn't straight above my poor head? And are the crowds light enough at this time of year to make 4 or 5 hours of touring each evening worth it? Since I was just there a few months ago, I don't have a strong need to do and see everything there is to do and see this time around...hitting my favorite rides, seeing my favorite shows, checking out Pandora and Rivers of Light, and exploring every nook and cranny of World Showcase are on my wishlist for this particular trip.

Just tell me straight. I can take it. Is this a crazy scheme that I will regret spending so much money on? Will I turn into a puddle of goo as soon as I get off the plane at MCO? Or is this a simply brilliant plan and you all wish you had thought of it first?


#2

I just about die of the heat in upstate SC during August and September. I can only imagine that FL will be even worse. Evenings are probably better. Bring along cooling towels and really light flowy clothes and you May be able to handle it. Those spray bottles with fans are a life saver.


#3

I'm from MI and have asthma, so high humidity is NOT my friend. However, I'm going in late August with my teen before she goes back to school. I've got early morning and evening stuff planned, but mid day when it's disgusting, we'll be either in the room enjoying the A/C or at the pool. If you can swing a 12 day trip with going into the parks in the evening, I say go for it.


#4

I have been over Labor day several times. From Pa. We get humidity too. Crowds were lower and we were used to the heat. Rest in afternoon.


#5

It's doable. We did a family trip to WDW in early February and loved it. Last year we went to Universal Orlando at the end of August and loved that too. We are going back to Disney at the end of August this year, because we had such a relaxing time.

There's lots of air conditioning in a lot of attractions, so that helps with the heat. And the heat actually convinced us to go more slowly and take breaks, while in February we all pushed ourselves too hard and got cranky. Drink lots of water. Wear hats. Pack extra clothes. You'll want extra showers in the afternoons, because your clothes will either be sweat soaked or rain soaked.

The biggest difference was dealing with the rain. It rained a LOT last August - every afternoon for a few hours. We rode it out in our hotel room last year, but are going to try to get out in it more this year.

We really did have a great time though!


#6

I live here and as an annual passholder I go a lot throughout the year. I recommend you go in the morning and then do your work for your job in the middle of the day, and then go back for the evenings. This is the advice that all Floridians follow and give. It gets oppressive in the afternoons and you literally feel like you are sitting in a broiler oven.

As for going in August/September, or even May (it will be 93 today), I say go for it! Drink a lot of water. Floridians always have a bottle of water in hand and don't obsess over having to use the bathroom every couple hours.

You would be surprised how much cooler you feel if you stay hydrated. In addition, we all sweat like mad down here and we are just used to sweating with each other everywhere we go. Vanity goes right out the window. Bring a small hand towel to wipe off the sweat and find places to go inside and cool off every once in a while.

I'm taking my kids today, and like I said, it will be 93 degrees. If we let the heat drag us down, we'd be inside from April to October.

Have a fun trip!


#7

I went last Labor Day. Early mornings are actually a good time to get into the park (before 11). The heat was manageable for me (pale girl from the North East).


#8

Another vote for this plan


#9

Been going that time of year since 80s & I love it. Disclaimer: I am that odd bird who loves heat/humidity! But as said ^, touring til 11am, then back to park after dinnertime, you'll have cooler temps & even lower crowds, during those low crowd days, so added bonus that way too.

My daughter in law (school counselor), who wanted to avoid heat/humidity, said that the weather in mid august vs mid april didn't seem that different to her. I was pleasantly surprised to hear that, I don't want to go back during school vaca week again (pool too crowded).


#10

Its a great time to go. The rain is the concern more then the heat. But because so many school systems have already started the crowds are low. I agree with upper post, you have to divide day into 2 waves. Hit the parks on RD hard then go back for great evenings.


#11

Ditto this - also hitting RD in the morning will help you avoid the lines/crowds.


#12

This is super helpful, thanks! I hadn't actually put much thought into the idea of going first thing in the morning and back again in the evening...mainly because the parks aren't open super late at that time of year and I thought the back-and-forth would eat up too much time. But it sounds like this is my best bet for avoiding the heat!

Approximately what time every afternoon/evening would you say the temperature begins to drop around the beginning of September? (In other words, when it is safe to venture from my hotel each day?) Obviously, this depends on a lot of variables...but if I planned to hit the parks around 6pm, does that sound like a reasonable plan?


#13

During my trip last September it rained every day sometime between 1:00 and 4:00 and would cool down as we returned to the parks around 5:00 or 6:00? Also, other than Hollywood Studios, and the MK party nights the hours were extended for all parks before my trip (well- AK was still open until 11:00 at that time).


#14

I live in NW FL and I would not consider a trip to WDW Jun-Sept. I did it in my 20s and it was brutal. Now, in my late 50s, not a chance. Temps will be in the mid to upper 90s with high humidity. Even leaving the hotel at 7:00 AM, you will be sweating before you get to the bus or your car, but it is manageable. From 11:00 to 5:00 it is relentless misery. After 5:00 it's back to hot and humid, but not pass-out hot.

If you go, you ABSOLUTELY want to be at the parks for RD; no sleeping in, no checking e-mails - aim for the first bus of the AM, preferably to an AM EMH park. Stay until mid/late morning (or until you feel your knees buckling) and head back to your resort. THEN do your work, swim, take a cold shower - whatever you need to recover from the AM. Then head back to a park (preferably with PM EMH) and stay until closing.

And bring sun screen. Lots of sun screen.

Hyperbole aside, it really is a kind of hot that I've only experienced in one other place - the tropical island of Okinawa. I can barely make it through the somewhat milder summers in Pensacola, and I know I would be miserable if I went then. I'm not a "relax around the resort" kind of guy, and the number of hours i would have to spend holed up in my room would just frustrate me no end. For myself, I would much prefer to wait a few months and actually enjoy my trip than go sooner and be miserable.


#15

Its doable but if you dont like heat and humidity you will probably be miserable. I live in Charleston and i hibernate during August.


#16

Thank you for this...I have a lot to think about, it seems! As excited as I am to go back sooner rather than later, I definitely do not want to spend all that money on a 2-week trip only to regret not having the patience to wait a just few more months. I am used to high summer temps (though I do not enjoy them), but it is a very dry heat where I come from and I get super uncomfortable when the humidity rises above 30% (which is rare here in North Idaho). If it is true that I will be hot and sweaty within a matter of minutes of being outdoors at 7am, that could very well be a deal-breaker for me.


#17

We live in Spokane and I would not even consider going to Florida in the summer. We go often in early April, and the humidity almost does us in. We Northwesterners are so lucky with our dry, mild summers. Where in North Idaho are you?


#18

I always declared people insane who went in the summer. And then last year we went in June and again in September....and this year, I'll be going in June and September....somehow, surviving the god awful heat just isn't as miserable as you might think - all because you're in Disney. We hit the parks early, eat a table service lunch and then high tail it for the pool. If we're up to it, we head back to the park for the evening (which is why I love staying at the Epcot resorts - just a quick walk or a boat ride and I'm back at the park!). But we always plan on accomplishing a little less than we would at other times of the year, knowing we need to take it slow...and hydrate...with lots of sunscreen....and air conditioned attractions....


#19

I think once you've been out in it for a couple hours, you sorta get used to being horribly uncomfortable. As long as you stay hydrated and UV protected, it's doable.
Having said that, it will completely depend on each individual person. My wife HAAAATES the heat. I don't mind it so much. She'll actually get light-headed and even pass out if she gets too hot. Me, I'll just sweat like a pig and keep moving.
So, understand - it is obnoxiously hot, but if you can tolerate heat - you'll still have plenty of fun!


#20

A gross, not, humid day at Disney is better than a normal temperature day at home! :blush: