Selecting Magic Kingdom Park Day

We are scheduled for a trip in April. I am trying to decide which day we should go to Magic Kingdom. It will be my husband, 7 year old, 3 year old, and me. We do not plan on visiting any characters. We went last year, and my son isn’t that interested in them and my daughter was terrified of the plush characters and not terribly interested in princesses. Due to my kids’ interests, we will not be riding Space Mountain, Haunted Mansion, or Pirates of the Caribbean.

We could pick a day with Early Morning Magic (which we have done before and loved); however, this day is ranked as a much busier day on the crowd calendar (8). Our other option is to pick a day without early morning magic but with a less by day on the crowd calendar (4). We will not have park hoppers, and we only have one day at Magic Kingdom this trip.

Would we be better off picking the day with Early Morning Magic so we could get the majority of Fantasy Land done before park open, or would we better off doing Magic Kingdom on a substantially lower crowd day? I do have an 8:05 a.m. reservation for Be Our Guest for the day without early morning magic.

Welcome! Ask anything & often!

A CL 8 vs. CL4 is a big swing. Just know that by having a TP you are ahead of 90% of other people just wandering around aimlessly asking, “What do you want to do next?” and picking a long queue because they don’t know any better.

FYI – A common misconception about Touring Plans Crowd Levels is that they are an indicator of the number of people in each park. However, they are an indicator of average queue waits at the rides in that park during 11am – 5pm.

A CL 1 can feel like a CL 4 in terms of park capacity, but the queues may be moving quickly. Conversely, you can be in a CL 9 park that feels like a CL 5 because the streets aren’t packed. However, all the queues are super long.

Be aware that these CLs are not definite until about 60 days out. (Really until about 45 - 30 days) Right now they are just using historical data for 2018 / 2019. Also, sometimes that far in advance they are just using the historical data from that calendar date and not adjusted for the day of the week. For example if your trip starts on a Monday, that day was probably a Sat. or Sun. in 2019. So you might see a CL10 because this year that “date” was a weekend. When they update the calendar in 2020 they’ll adjust for that date being on Monday this time.

Basically, start making your plans and seeing what TP suggests is the best plan. However, know that you’ll “real” plan won’t be ready until after you get your FPP booked.

I love TP but any CL # that is more than 60 days out I no longer trust. Wait and see… it’ll fluctuate. TP only updates about 60 days in advance and copies & pastes the previous year’s historical info into the farther away future dates.

Each crowd calendar has their own way of getting their number. I like to look at multiples to get a better idea of when it is a “slower” time to go. CLs for a specific date aren’t reliable.

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Thank you!

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As my friend Maui says, “You’re Welcome!”

If I really had to pick today based off of the info you have I’d for for the CL4 day. I love EMM, but with that date’s CL8 being double my other option I’d go to on the CL4 day.

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Welcome! :smiley:

CLs are best projections, I believe even at 60 days out. I don’t know if you saw what I wrote here about our CLs from our last trip last month:

What rides do you want? How many times do you want to ride? What is your touring style?

In previous Disney trips, we had a commando style of touring. We opened and closed the parks, riding our favorites often. But we haven’t been to Disney in 7 years and even at CL 4, the SB lines were long.

This time, DH, DD21, and DS19, were content for the most part with just one ride for each attraction each day. But I didn’t know that until we started touring!

I feel that one of the keys to doing much is RDing. On December 15th, with an actual CL 4, we RDed MK. Since we had a 7DMT FPP, we zagged at RD. The park opened at 8 that day. By 9:30, we had ridden BMTR 2x, HM, WTP, Little Mermaid, and 7DMT. We had done 6 rides in 1.5 hours.

By 3 pm, we had also ridden Barnstormer, Dumbo, Tea Cups, Space Mountain (FPP), Buzz, iasw (FPP), and PP (FPP). We had lunch reservations at BOG, snacks along the way, PhotoPass pictures, shopped, and watched Mickey’s Philharmagic. We were done. We had another MK day later in the trip.

We wouldn’t have mind riding 7DMT again, but we couldn’t get another FPP and we weren’t willing to stand in line.

EMM would get you on the FL rides often, if that is what your family wants.

I hope our experience gives you something to think about for your family


Thanks. I appreciate your thoughts. I have a PPO BOG reservation if we decide not to do EMM. Our last trip (June 2019), we had two days at MK so we were able to ride just about everything we wanted and never waited more than 20 minutes. Because we only have one day, I need to be more selective about what rides we will hit. I am definitely a planner and will follow the touring plan. It helps keep us on track and it also helps arguments from my kids about what we will do next - we already know because it’s on the plan! My kids won’t make it from rope drop to fireworks, so we will leave for several hours in the afternoon to rest/swim and then come back to the park for dinner and fireworks.

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If your kids can RD, they will get more done in a shorter time, like my example above.