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Warning Issued for 2024 Disney World Vacations

by Staff

Imagine this: You’ve meticulously planned your Disney World vacation for 2024, and you’re all set to immerse yourself in the enchanting world of Disney. You’ve made dining reservations, taken a look at all the helpful Disney Genie+ and Lightning Lane guides, and even packed your Disney-themed outfits. But, when you arrive at the park gates, you’re greeted with unexpected changes in park hours.

Cinderella Castle in Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World Resort as seen from an archway.
Credit: Disney

It’s not uncommon for Disney World to adjust its park hours, and this can happen for various reasons, including special events, maintenance, and crowd levels. To avoid any surprises that might disrupt your plans, it’s crucial to keep a close eye on the official Disney World website or app for real-time updates on park hours.

For those guests who are planning a trip to Walt Disney World Resort in 2024, we have two times of the year that you should be even more aware of Disney World park hours.

Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse in front of Cinderella Castle at Disney WorldMickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse in front of Cinderella Castle at Disney World
Credit: Disney

If your Disney World adventure falls during the Halloween season (August to October), there’s a unique factor to be aware of: Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party. This spooktacular event brings a ghoulish twist to the parks and offers exclusive entertainment, character meet-and-greets, and, of course, lots of candy. However, the presence of this event will lead to early park closures.

Magic Kingdom Park often closes at 6:00 p.m. on many days during this season. Disney has not announced the dates for Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party and they typically do so during the “Halfway to Halloween” celebration week, which is typically towards the end of April. At this point, however, you should be aware that even if your vacation falls in the August heat, it can be impacted by the start of Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party.

Goofy, Minnie, Mickey, Pluto, and Donald dressed up for the Walt Disney World Halloween celebrations.Goofy, Minnie, Mickey, Pluto, and Donald dressed up for the Walt Disney World Halloween celebrations.
Credit: Walt Disney World Resort

The holiday season at Walt Disney World Resort (November to December) is truly a sight to behold. With festive decorations, seasonal entertainment, and the enchanting Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party, it’s a time when the parks truly shine.

However, just like during Halloween, the holiday season can also bring early park closures. Magic Kingdom, the heart of the holiday festivities, may close its doors at 6:00 p.m. on various days to make way for the After-Hours event. Moreover, Disney’s Hollywood Studios may host Jollywood Nights during this season, which adds to the festive atmosphere but can also impact park hours slightly.

Just like the Halloween Party, the dates for the Christmas festivities will not be announced until later this year. If you’ve already booked days at Disney, this is certainly something to be aware of as you continue to plan your week visiting Magic Kingdom, EPCOT, Disney’s Hollywood Studios, and Disney’s Animal Kingdom.

Disney World - Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse on a float during a parade at Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party.Disney World - Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse on a float during a parade at Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party.
Credit: Disney

Check the official Disney World website for the most up-to-date information on park hours, and you’ll have to book tickets in advance for special events like Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party.

The good news is that Disney Park Reservations are no longer required for most guests. If you’re a Disney Annual Passholder, however, you’ll need to keep your eyes on the calendar more closely to navigate when you’ll be booking those reservations later this year.

What advice do you have for someone planning a Disney World vacation this year? Let Inside the Magic know in the comments!

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