Thoughts on Park Order?

So I’m going back and forth on what order to start our vacation. Here is a little background info:

We arrive February 12th at 8pm from Seattle with me, DH and DD6, so our first day in the parks would be Monday the 13th. Currently I have us visiting Epcot on the 13th, then AK on the 14th. (MK will be the following 2.5 days). But maybe we should do AK on the 13th and then Epcot on the 14th? Here is what I’m concerned about:

  1. If we do Epcot on the 13th, we will want to rope drop to see Joy and Sadness. Since we will have just traveled the whole day before and on West Coast time…it is probably asking a lot to start out our vacation super early. BUT, I’m willing to cut and run out of Epcot than AK because I’m pretty sure we’ll be back in the evenings for dinner and whatnot.

  2. If we do AK on the 13th, I believe they have EMH that morning. But, we’d probably come later and stay later anyways, especially if Rivers of Light is happening. So I feel like we could sleep in and it would probably be ok with Fastpasses and all that?

  3. My last concern with Epcot on the 14th is if we do Rope Drop on the 14th, then we have an ADR at BOG at 8am on the 15th. Two really early (for us) days in a row might be tough.

Thoughts? We’re totally willing to come back to the hotel and take breaks and hopefully naps, but just trying to start out on the right foot.

Although, it probably all boils down to when we could get FEA Fastpasses. Ha!

Most likely your best chance for FEA FPs will be later in your trip. Have you considered one or two MK days before your EP day?

We travel to and from Seattle often, as we are from there but moved to the East Coast in 2003. I highly recommend not planning an early park day that first full day! I would do later afternoon AK and then Epcot the next day. Or even AK, a half day of MK, Epcot, then 2 more days of MK (if the 0.5 MK day isn’t due to your flight home, that is.)

I was thinking that was likely too…but maybe things will calm down a bit by the time I can book them in December. Hahahaha. Anyways, I was planning to do MK after our first couple of days there. I don’t want to pull out the big guns too early in trip. Plus we have some ADRs already set up on those days. My plan is basically:
Day 1: EP or AK
Day 2: AK or EP
Day 3: MK
Day 4: MK
Day 5: 9:25 ADR at CRT and then likely another park in the afternoon/evening as it is Friday before President’s Day weekend.

We have park hoppers, so we will likely spend evenings at a different park than our morning park if we’re up to it.

That’s kind of what I was thinking…I feel like even though we are getting in at 8pm, we won’t be at the hotel until closer to 10-10:30, which isn’t super late our time, but we will have been up early to catch our flights and knowing my daughter…she will need the sleep. My plan is basically. I also want to warm up to the MK madness.
Day 1: EP or AK
Day 2: AK or EP
Day 3: MK
Day 4: MK
Day 5: 9:25 ADR at CRT and then likely another park in the afternoon/evening as it is Friday before President’s Day weekend and I’m sure MK will be packed.

We are going around the same time but only 4 days. Feb 13-16. I avoid extra hour days even though we are on site. For what it is worth here are my thoughts since we have similar issues:

13th: MK (10ish arrival for us this day and AK has 8am start)
14th: AK (EP has late hours = more crowded)
15th: EP (Torn on this. Are the 2/10 crowds predicted with MK accurate with having extra late hours)
16th: MK (or EP if 2/10 accurate).

After getting caught in unexpected 8+/10 days in November, 2015 and doing fine I would have thought that I wouldn’t worry about the crowds but obviously not!

I would go the first day to AK since it is your late start day and you can get FPP to all your must do’s. There are too many tier 1’s at EP to not RD it and since you can’t use the single rider line at TT, I’d try to do that one first.

That’s kind of what I’m thinking. Plus we won’t ride Kali Rapids most likely and I’ll send my husband on EE in the single rider line. And if River of Light is finally operating, I will probably adjust our schedule so we start late, but end with ROL and go home. In February, I imagine it will run fairly early because of how early sunset is. The more I think about it the more I just don’t see us getting up for RD the day after we come in.

It’s SO tough, right? I was trying to avoid the Extra hours in the parks too, but I kind of feel it might not matter THAT much for Animal Kingdom because from what I hear, not a lot of people use it and we would be planning to be there early afternoon-evening time (hoping to catch that River of Light!). On the 14th with the late hours at Epcot…I am kind of hoping that the late hours won’t really affect the morning. Although we are planning to go there for dinner for Valentine’s Day, but if it’s crazy we’ll just do dinner and then leave. And I wondered the same thing about MK on the 15th! Seems counter-intuitive. I’m not banking on it, but again, I’m hoping those last hours effect the evening in the park and not so much morning. I could be totally wrong, but I don’t think doing MK as our first day will be successful for us. Good luck with all your planning!