Archive for July, 2007

Disney World Crowds Predictor Major Update

by on July 23, 2007

We’ve completed our most comprehensive survey of theme park “best days” since 2005. To get these data, we sent researchers to count people headed to the parks. For the Magic Kingdom, we positioned data collectors (with Disney’s permission) at the Transportation and Ticket Center and at the Pop Century Bus Stop.

On a typical day, the researchers counted between 8,000 and 14,000 people. We had other researchers in each park measuring the wait times at the headliner attractions, as well. Data collection started in January, ended in July, and included several holiday periods, as well as weeks in which the Extra Magic Hour schedule varied from normal.

The best and worst days for the Magic Kingdom are:

Magic Kingdom
Highest Waits
Lowest Waits

A couple of things to note: Days with morning Extra Magic Hour were more crowded than other days of the week. Thursday is the most common day for Morning EMHs, so Thursday is usually the day with the highest waits. Sunday is also a busy day. Tuesday, Saturday and Wednesday (when they don’t have EMHs) are the best days of the week to visit the Magic Kingdom.

A good rule of thumb seems to be to visit the park the day after its morning EMH (not, as one might expect, its evening EMH).

We’ll have the Epcot, Studios and Animal Kingdom numbers posted shortly.

Also note: the crowd calendar is underpredicting by about 1.0 the current crowd levels in the Magic Kingdom. We’re working to adjust the formula. Until then, plan for slightly larger crowds than we’re indicating.

Crowd Blog Updated

by on July 22, 2007

We’ve updated the crowd blog with results from our most comprehensive study of the best and worst days for each theme park. Magic Kingdom data are posted now, and we’ll have the other parks shortly.

The study ran from January through early July. With Disney’s permission, we put data collectors at key points around the resort and in the theme parks. At the Magic Kingdom, for example, we counted the number of people boarding buses at Disney’s Pop Century Resort (which sampled Disney resort guest behavior) and at the Transportation and Ticket Center (offsite guest behavior). On a typical day we counted between 8,000 and 14,000 guests. We also collected data on the wait times at the parks’ headliner attractions.

We analyzed the number of guests, the wait times and the Extra Magic Hour schedule to determine a couple of things: (1) how crowds ebb and flow during each day of the week; and (2) the effect Extra Magic Hours have on crowds. The latter is especially important when Disney doesn’t stick to its normal EMH schedule.

One interesting finding is that it’s better to visit a park the day after its morning EMH, rather than its evening EMH. More details can be found in the blog.

Updated crowd calendar posted as of Monday evening

by on July 22, 2007

Disney’s extended park hours in October and November, possibly to compensate for a host of hard-ticket events that close the Magic Kingdom early. We’ll have an updated crowd calendar posted later tonight. (Update: the calendar was posted at 9 pm Eastern.) No major changes.

Epcot to be rededicated for 25th

by on July 20, 2007

Remember that grass-roots fan effort to have some recognition for Epcot’s 25th Anniversary, Oct 1st, 2007, we mentioned earlier this month? (July 9th update)

It seems that group of dedicated fans won. Disney is now planning to host a park rededication ceremony with speakers from park management and Disney Imagineering on the morning of the 25th anniversary. Additionally, Disney Events is working with that fan group to have them included and attending the rededication ceremony.

To attend, you’ll want to sign up at the group’s website here.

The special event may occur before the park’s official opening (it is still in the planning stages) but wristband distribution at the front gates will occur – so people formally signed up may attend. Space limitations have not yet been mentioned, but if you wish to sign up to attend or to get more information can visit the group’s website here.

Legacy sales area demolished

by on July 20, 2007

The Leave a Legacy sales area is now completely demolished and the space has been returned to the park.

The sunny glass-pyramid covered alcove now provides a nice place to hide from the rain or take a break if WDW Research isn’t using it to poll guests.

Future plans for the location are currently unknown.

Custom sports gear coming soon

by on July 20, 2007

Team Mickey in Downtown Disney Marketplace will begin selling customized/engraved sports gear and equipment in the coming months. Items will includes engraved bats and customized gloves from the Rawlings brand.

Wand sheds a star

by on July 20, 2007

The Wand looming over Spaceship Earth at Epcot has begun deconstruction of the main structural elements.

The giant star has been removed from the top and portions of the magic wand itself are being removed nightly.

Mickey’s Christmas Party Parade Change

by on July 20, 2007

During the Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party after-hours hard-ticket event the parade shown will be NEW!

Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmastime Parade will debut this season and replaces the Very Merry Christmas Parade.

Least Expensive Ticket Calculator Updated

by on July 19, 2007

We’ve updated the Least Expensive Ticket Calculator with the most current ticket prices from Disney and third-party vendors. Right now we’ve got Maple Leaf Tickets and The Official Ticket Center included, but we’d be interested in hearing if there are other ticket brokers you’d like us to add.

Updated Disney Dining Plan information

by on July 16, 2007

We’ve updated the cost comparison and snack list for the Disney Dining Plan here.