Extra Magic Hour?



We’re staying at Port Orleans in mid June. We are getting one day tickets for each park (not Park Hopper). Are the parks really crowded on ‘Extra Magic Hour’ days? Would it be better to go on regular schedule days?

Thanks…Rick Bo


There will be a lot of people like yourself in the parks on those days. People who have not bought the parkhopper and will be trying to get the most out of their time at Disney. A lot of people will show up to EMH (especially A.M.) and they will stay in the park throughout the day…add those people to the number of people who will be coming to the parks regardless. So yes, EMH parks will always be more crowded than non-EMH parks. Especially in June when lots of people are heading to the world.

Is there a specific reason you are not hopping? Some people live by hopping (I am included in that group) and others aren’t crazy about it. Personally I love it because we aren’t really morning people and we rarely make it to AM EMH’s so we like to hit one park in the morning…come back and swim and rest and then hit the park with evening EMH. Most people prefer the AM EMH because you can really get in and out in no time. We like the PM EMH because when the parks are open late (especially when they are open VERY late…like 11-3 am we find most people leave after 11 and we can ride anything we want.


And welcome to Mousebuzz!!


welcome to mousebuzz, i would go with emh


Welcome to MB! Go to EMH b/c you are staying on property, so you might as well take advantage of it.


I would suggest converting those 1 park only tickets into park hoppers. It’s not that much more money and you will be glad to get out of what ever park is full to the brim and to get into a more managable park. You can always go back to the park later or another day.


I agree with the posts above about park hoppers - they’re great to have if you have the time to switch parks or relax in the afternoon. But if you have limited time, your best bet would be to hit a perk with morning EMH and say until you’ve done everything you want.


We have always bought park hoppers until our trip last October. I was convinced I didn’t need them for a 4 day trip–we’d do a park per day. I wish we had bought park hoppers! I think our time would have been used better if we could have hopped, so I have to go with all the others who say convert to hoppers! I’ll never not do a hopper ticket again.


Also, in converting to park hoppers, you are not limited to the restuarants in that one particular park. You can spend the morning at MK, hop over to Epcot for Biergarten, and then head back to MK. It gives you a break, and you have endless choices of food.


Very good point!


I have always hopped. It just makes it easier for you to improvise instead of being locked in to one park for that day. Other posters remind that not being able to hop can also limit your dining choices during the day. I’ll always remind people that Illuminations is at 9 PM every night and you can often catch Wishes and Illuminations or Illuminations and Fantasmic on the same night, or even Fantasmic, Illuminations, and the late SpectroMagic parade, but only if you have park hoppers. It’s a great way to end the night and a great way to work up your appetite for dinner.

For EMH, the best way to get the most from them is to be at the gates at 7:50 for morning hours and hop away from that park or have breakfast around 10 AM ish. By 11 ish, that park is going to be getting pretty crowded, but just to be sure, check out the ride wait time boards to gauge if you’ve got another hour before it’s time to leave. Go to a different park or try some out of park experience, maybe even grab a nap. I’ve gotten better mileage from the evening hours, the later the better. There’s nothing like riding Big Thunder or Space Mountain and barely waiting to ride as people leave the park.


My son is not a morning person and it takes a act of congress to get him out of bed. Thank goodness for evening EMH especially in the summer months.


:laugh: We can barley get up on time to go to work!! Let alone get up and moving and at the gates by 8 on our vacation…not happening! At least not everyday…every once and while we can do it, but we don’t count on it. Thats why we were THRILLED with the announcement of PM EMH. We’d rather stay up til 2 or 3 than get up at 6 or 7!


With you on that!
We’ll do a few rope drops, but we have to relax on vacation too.
And have always had great luck with the evening EMH being less crowded than the mornings.


I make it a habit never to do early morning Extra hour parks. They seem to be overcrowded.
Late hour Extra hours are a different story. I love to do MK on those nights.
It’s crowded but if you ride rides during parades or fireworks, they are pretty empty. That is of course if you don’t want to see the fireworks. Or do an outdoor attraction during the fireworks so you get the best of both worlds.
You have to plan during the parades though so as not to be caught in the crowd or “trapped” by the parade or ropes. Most of the time, there are cross walks along the parade walk up to the time of the parade.


This is what we use to check how crowded the parks are.
TouringPlans.com - The Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World
I like EMH at night because its 3 hrs more. Last trip we did EMH night at AK and never had a wait.


Here’s another tip that turned out to be pretty true our last trip. The parks that have an EMH at night, tend to be less crowded the next day, as in, if Epcot has EMH on Mon night, Tuesday morning tends to be a good time to go there. (purely example, not really sure when EMH is)


This really depends on the time of the year. When the parks are open late and it is a busy time, the mornings are typically better. The crowds in the morning disperse very quickly once the rope drops. When the parks aren’t open late, such as during the slow season times, the crowds are a bit heavier, but, not so bad because there aren’t as many people at the resort. And that gives them the extra hours of sleep they don’t normally get during the heavy traffic times.