Here is a look at our Disneyland Crowd Calendar. Busy days will be marked in RED, average days will be BLUE, and slow days will be GOLD. You can see how our predictions compare with the actual days by looking at the side-by-side numbers for days in the past. Our calendars are updated daily using current crowd levels to make sure it’s as accurate as possible. If you are planning a trip to Walt Disney World, you can also check out that crowd calendar.
Click here to check out Disneyland’s Current Wait Times
How We Make the Crowd Calendar
To make our Disneyland Crowd Calendar, we track wait times at the parks, and make predictions about what future wait times will be. The crowd ratings here are based on predictions about whether most rides will have wait times above or below their averages. That means that the Crowd Calendar represents how long you can expect to wait in line on each day.
Some people may prefer to know about how many people are in the park. Take Space Mountain as an example. If there are more people in the park, Disney can put more trains on the track. So even though more people will be in line, the wait time doesn’t necessarily increase. As another example, if there are more people in the park, Disney can have more parade performances, which will pull people away from the rides. That means that two days can have the same rating, even if the attendances are different. In general, days with a high rating will also have higher attendance, but that may not always be the case.
We describe crowds this way because it tells you how many things you can do in a day.
Keep in mind that Disney’s reservation calendars may change based on their crowd and staffing expectations, as well as the kind of ticket you plan to use. Make sure that there are still reservations available for the days you’re planning to go.
How Accurate are Crowd Calendars
Crowds are challenging to predict. A heat wave, the economy, other events near the park, or a broken down ride can have drastic effects on the crowd. Because of the way we rate the crowds, even having short staff on a few rides can increase the wait times and crowds. Our intent in publishing the crowd calendar is not to tell you exactly how long your waits will be. Instead, we want to give you an idea of what crowds will be like.
The difference between a 2 and 3 will be hard to tell. But the difference between a 2 and a 9 is pretty obvious. So don’t think of this as an exact measure. Instead, you can use the crowd calendar to give you an idea of how long the lines are likely to be. The average error is about 1.4 to 1.8, depending on the park.
Because crowd predictions can be so dynamic, we update the calendar daily. That lets us make sure that you can see our most recent data. You may see a day’s rating change by a couple points from day to day. But it’s unlikely that it will change by 3 or more.
Does a Lower Crowd Make a Difference?
You can have a great day in the parks even with heavy crowds. But it’s definitely easier with lighter crowds. Walking room, parade viewing, dining, and wait times all get better with lighter crowds. But even with heavy crowds, you can normally do a lot in one day in the parks. Some rides will almost always have short lines. Others will almost always be long. RideRouter can help you know how to maximize your time.
Other Things to Consider
The Disneyland Crowd Calendar is just one thing you should consider when planning your trip. Disney posts planned downtime for their rides, so you can make sure your favorites will be open when you go. These Ride closures are typically only shown about a month in advance, but it’s still good to check as your trip is getting close.
Seasonal events can make a difference, too. Disney’s Holiday décor for Christmas time is well known. Some rides get a rethemed, there are special treats, and seasonal merchandise can be fun. Keep in mind that Disney is selling more and more of the merchandise online, too. Some parks offer special Holiday parties after hours that require a separate ticket. These parties come with very low crowds for the night. Disney’s Halloween time offerings are growing every year. The special-ticket Halloween events offer trick-or-treating, and special encounters with Disney villains. Easter has less to do, but there is an option to do an Easter-egg-hunt around the park that can be fun.
Ticket pricing and reservations can make a difference, too. Disney uses a ticket pricing scheme called Tiered Pricing; it let’s them charge more money for tickets on busy days. The ticket price can change by as much as $60 depending on the day. And don’t forget that just having a ticket doesn’t mean you can get into the park. You have to make a reservation for a specific day at a specific park, too. Even if you have a park hopper ticket, the reservation will tell you which park you have to start your day at.
Our Disneyland Crowd Calendar is just one tool in planning your trip. Make sure you look at some of these other factors, too.