Optimize vs Evaluate


I’ve never used TP before and haven’t been to Disney for about 20 years. I’ve put together an itinerary based on my own interests rather than pulling a pre-planned one provided by TP. I then did the evaluate option and moved things around a bit and planned FP to minimize wait times. I’m curious, is it better to do the optimize and trust that or if my wait times are low in the order I put it, is that safe to trust?

I put together this half day plan for my 4 year old’s first ever experience with Disney:
MK Welcome show
Character breakfast at Crystal Palace
Walk through Cinderella Castle
Meet Rapunzel (with FP)
Prince Charming Carrousel
Mad Tea Party
Stop at Cheshire Cafe for a snack
Winnie the Pooh (with FP)
Barnstormer (contemplating FP for this but the lines were really low)
Casey Jr Splash N Soak
Pete’s Silly Side Show
Ride on WDW Railroad

TP estimates we would be done with all of this around 1:00 PM, which is just perfect. But I am utterly shocked. The wait times are all so minimal. Is that really possible? It sounds too good to be true.

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I think it sounds perfect!

Does the park open at 8 or 9 that day? Either way, 4-5 hours should cover all that nicely, especially since you’ll fastpass Rapunzel.

Definitely fastpass Barnstormer. That’s a ride that seems much more fun with a short wait! :wink:

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That’s definitely possible if you’re going on a low crowd level day. The rationale is that 2 of your list items don’t actually even take up “park time” (the welcome show is before you can enter, and the castle walkthrough is a rational, if slightly slower way of getting to where you were going anyway… you’ll want to be aware that if there’s a show getting ready or going on you won’t be able to get through and will have to go around), and several others don’t have very long waits even on a high CL day and will have little or no wait on a low to medium-low CL day. Then you have FP for two of the three that are likely to have even medium length waits, and you’re left with your breakfast being the only thing that’s like to take you more than 20-25 minutes, unless you plan on seeing all 4 characters at Pete’s… you’ll have to wait in line twice for that because they have the boy characters on one side and the girl characters on the other, and in that case your total time spent there might be a little over 30 minutes.

I generally always evaluate, because I hate backtracking constantly. The only exception to that is if I’m trying to squeeze a ton into a short time.


This plan is is October 30th and the park opens at 9am. TP says the crowd level will be a 5 that day. The plan is to arrive early to see the welcome show. Then have a little time to wander Main Street and let my daughter look her fill before breakfast.

The responses makes me feel better. I keep looking at the plan like “this can’t be!” But the rationale makes total sense. Thanks!

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This looks like a great plan. I also prefer to evaluate over optimizing because I want to create an “arc” of experience - especially for a first visit.

FWIW, my DD6 and DD3 hated the Barnstormer. We thought it would be an intro to the bigger rides, but they both got knocked and rattled around and came off the ride upset. They did much better on the mine train because it is a much smoother ride (not sure if your daughter will be tall enough). If you didn’t leave them out on purpose, and especially if you have another FP, I’d take her on Under the Sea or Peter Pan instead. Much more fun.

Yes! An arc. That is exactly what I want. I kept doing optimize and was left feeling like it was a lackluster first day. I want to save time, but I want the experience for my daughter more. This way I am able to achieve both.

We are actually doing 3 days in the Magic Kingdom and this is just the first day. I’m trying to plan half days because I don’t know if she can really make it through the park for a whole day. So far, 3 days has allowed me to plan a full experience.

Day 1 is sort of the quintessential disney, at least based on my memories from when I was a kid. I have revamped the plan a little to include Peter Pan in this day now.
Day 2 is a pirate / adventure day
Day 3 is a princess day which starts at bibbidi bobbidi boutique with her princess transformation. Then back to MK to meet as many princesses as possible. But she loves princesses so I wanted to pepper them throughout the trip.

I’m planning to take her on both the Barnstormer and Seven Dwarfs. She’s a little daredevil at home and I think she will be ok with the jerkyness, but since she’s never been on a roller coaster, its hard to say. I appreciate that bit of advice because I can warn her in advance. She’s definitely tall enough at 46.5 inches! She’s super tall for her age. Dad is 6’4 so that explains it.

Thanks so much for your tips!