Last year I wrote about what we expected to be the least crowded Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party. It proved to be a very popular topic, so here I am again to review the information from last year and give you an even better projection for 2014. Make sure you check out our dedicated page for a complete list of dates as well as a thorough description of what the Christmas party is.
In short, if you’re looking for the best 2014 Very Merry Christmas Party to attend, we recommend Monday, November 10, 2014. Last year we recommended Tuesday, December 10, 2013, and it turned out to be the party with the 2nd lowest wait times by our calculation. The equivalent party for last year’s recommendation, Tuesday, December 9, 2014, comes in second on this year’s list.
Since I’m sure you’re wondering how we did with our recommendations last year, the answer is…eh, okay. There were several predictions that we nailed, but we had a few errors that we have fixed for this year’s recommendations. Here are the top 5 from last year’s recommendations:
|Party Date||Projected Wait Time Rank||Actual Measured Wait Time Rank|
|Tuesday, December 10, 2013||1||2|
|Tuesday, December 3, 2013||2||12|
|Friday, December 6, 2013||3||18|
|Friday, November 15, 2013||4||5|
|Thursday, November 21, 2013||5||4|
As you can see, our numbers 1, 4, and 5 performed almost exactly like we thought they would. What we underestimated was the impact of the Thanksgiving break. Since there are no parties during American Thanksgiving week, the first party after the break (December 1 in 2013) is always one of the busier nights. In addition, the opening of New Fantasyland in 2012 skewed many of our 2012 Christmas Party numbers, which is what we based the 2013 rankings on. The new area’s official opening was December 6, 2012, the date of 2012′s busiest Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party. We mistakenly thought the crowds we saw during that week were an anomaly created by New Fantasyland. We have not made the same mistake with this year’s predictions.
What we have noticed is that much of the Christmas party crowds can be boiled down to a simple two-step generalization: go either a) on a Tuesday or b) before Thanksgiving (and no, there are no Tuesday parties before Thanksgiving). With the exception of Tuesday, December 9, and Tuesday, December 16, our top 8 parties to attend are all before Thanksgiving.
If you are considering other dates, here are our predicted rankings of attraction wait times at each of the 2014 Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Parties.
[Please note that the military discount ends following the November 20 party, and the Annual Pass and Disney Vacation Club discounts end following the December 9 party, but are also not available for the party on December 7.]
|Party Date||Attraction Wait Times Rank||Advance Purchase Price for an Adult Ticket||Notes|
|Monday, November 10, 2014||Lowest Wait Times||$71.36|
|Tuesday, December 9, 2014||2||$71.36|
|Thursday, November 20, 2014||3||$71.36|
|Sunday, November 16, 2014||4||$71.36|
|Thursday, November 13, 2014||5||$71.36|
|Friday, November 14, 2014||6||$71.36|
|Friday, November 21, 2014||7||$71.36|
|Tuesday, December 16, 2014||8||$71.36|
|Thursday, December 11, 2014||9||$75.62||Sold out 1 day in advance in 2013.|
|Tuesday, December 2, 2014||10||$71.36|
|Thursday, December 4, 2014||11||$71.36||Sold out 1 day in advance in 2013.|
|Friday, November 7, 2014||12||$71.36||First party of the year. Sold out 6 days in advance in 2013.|
|Sunday, December 7, 2014||13||$71.36|
|Sunday, November 30, 2014||14||$75.62||1st Party after Thanksgiving break. Sold out 1 day in advance in 2013|
|Sunday, December 14, 2014||15||$71.36|
|Thursday, December 18, 2014||16||$75.62|
|Friday, December 19, 2014||17||$71.36||Final Party of the year. Sold out 7 days in advance in 2013. Lines for character greetings and parade viewing spots will be long.|
|Friday, December 5, 2014||18||$75.62||Sold out 1 day in advance in 2013.|
|Friday, December 12, 2014||Highest Wait Times||$75.62||Sold out 1 day in advance in 2013.|
To determine all of the above, we looked at posted wait times from key attractions including Pirates of the Caribbean, Haunted Mansion, it’s a small world, and The Barnstormer. We narrowed it down to times between 7pm and midnight, which is when the park is limited to party guests. Some quick notes about our research:
- Our wait times only include attractions−not character meet and greets, special shows, or parades. The characters, in particular, often have long lines, especially for rare characters like the Seven Dwarfs. Regardless of which party you attend, some of the character lines will be long. If those are a must do, do them as early in the evening as possible.
- In general the wait times during the Christmas parties are quite low, averaging only about 11 minutes. If there are any attractions that you have really been wanting to do, experiencing them during the Christmas party might just be the time.
Looking for more information? Good, because we have a lot for you. Erin Foster wrote an amazing overview of Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party that will help you whether this is your first trip or your 100th (and if it’s your 100th, you might have a problem…being too awesome).
If meeting characters is your main priority, the bossman himself, Len Testa, wrote a fantastic (yes, I’m kissing up) piece about strategy for character meets during Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas party. If you haven’t decided if the cost is worth it you should read Kristina Murphy’s post about that very subject.
Now that you are armed with the most powerful weapon…knowledge, you can plan your 2014 trip to Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party. This blog post will help you find all of the party dates and prices.
Hopefully this analysis will help you choose the best Christmas Party to attend. Merry Christmas (a little early)!