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Disney World in December

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Are you planning a vacation to Disney World in December? You might be asking yourself a few questions like, Why is December a wonderful time to visit Disney World? And, how busy will it be at Disney World in December? In this article you will find out everything you’ll need to know to have a great time. From weather and crowd sizes to what to pack!

All About Disney World in December

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So you’re thinking of going to Disney World in December? That’s amazing! There is no doubt that Disney World has its perks in December. With a festive decorations everywhere, holiday-themed music playing all around you, and special seasonal treats, it’s hard to not get caught up in this atmosphere of joyous time of year!

If your plan is to visit Disney World toward the end of the month for the Holidays, you need to know that you are going at one of the busiest times of the year. But have no fear, below are some things you’ll want to know before arriving at our Most Magical Place on Earth!

Tips for Disney World in December

Visiting Disney World in December is totally do-able and you can have an amazing time, even when it’s super busy! Here are a few things you can do to make your trip more fun.

Christmas Tree on Main Street in Magic Kingdom.

How Crowded is Disney World in December?

Generally, December at Disney world has a mix of super crowded days and not so crowded days and not so crowded days, depending on what time of the month you go.

Crowds at the beginning of the month are great, with more people visiting on the weekends. But as you get closer to Christmas, the crowd situation definitely changes.

The weeks surrounding Christmas and New Year’s are the most crowded times of the entire year. There is no way around it. 

Cinderella Castle decorated for Christmas.

But, that being said, if you are prepared and know what to expect, it can be amazing to spend the most wonderful time of the year at the Most Magical Place on Earth!

Although it will be crowded, I have some tips down below that will help you beat the crowds at Disney World in December!

Special Events at Disney World in December

The ultimate special event in December at Disney World is of course, the holidays! The official start of the holiday season at Disney World this year is November 12th.

Magic Kingdom Christmas Tree.

Magic Kingdom

In December at Disney’s Magic Kingdom, you can experience Disney Very Merriest After Hours event. This is separate ticketed event that features special characters, themed fireworks, and amazing treats. This will happen on select nights from 9:00 pm – 1:00 am with entrance to the park beginning at 7:00 pm.

Besides the after hours event, guests at Magic Kingdom will also experience Castle projections, seasonal decor, and limited-time treats during the month of December.

Epcot

Are you a holiday foodie? Then you will definitely want to visit Epcot during December. With Epcot’s International Festival of the Holidays, you will be able to taste delicious treats from special Holiday themed kitchens and even experience a Holiday Cookie Stroll!

Red and white Mickey Mouse shaped Christmas wreath.

Hollywood Studios

Prepare for an unforgettable December at Hollywood Studios! With Sunset Seasons Greetings, a captivating projection show on the Hollywood Tower Hotel that you won’t want to miss!

Minnie’s Holiday Dine at Hollywood & Vine is another great experience where she’ll have merry mealtime with all of her adoring fans and Santa Claus Motorcade will light up your Christmas season as old St Nick travels through in his candy-apple red convertible packed full of presents.

Close up view of the bottom of the Christmas Tree in Disney's Magic Kingdom

If you are a fan of Frozen (and who isn’t?) there’s even more good news! For the First Time in Forever: A Frozen Sing-Along Celebration will feature a special final by Olaf!

Disney’s Animal Kingdom

There will be many character cavalcades floating down the Discovery River at Disney’s Animal Kingdom including: Santa Clause, Donald Duck, Chip & Dale and the Discovery Island Drummers. Also, make sure to check out the Tree of Life Awakenings – Holiday Edition that features a sparkling Tree of Life and festive holiday music!

Tips for Crowded Days at Disney World in December

Here are a few things you can do to beat the December crowds at Disney World. Some of these suggestions are not currently available, but should help you when things get back to normal.

Main Street USA at Magic Kingdom decorated for Christmas.

Disney Genie & Disney Genie+ System (Coming Soon)

Disney knows that there will be crowds at Disney World in December and has come up with ways to help you spend less time waiting in line. They want to keep the lines moving smoothly so that visitors can enjoy their experience without wasting precious vacation time standing around.

Fastpass+ sign for Frozen Ever After at Epcot.
Frozen Ever After

The Disney Genie and Disney Genie+ system at Disney World’s are services you can utilize to make your vacation more magical. These features allows you skip the lines at many attractions with a little pre-planning, even if you’re not staying in one of Disney’s resort hotels! Read more about Disney Genie and Genie+ here.

Advanced Dining Reservations

Table service restaurants at Disney World can fill up fast and it is rare that you can just show up and expect to get a table.

What are the Best Character Meals at Disney World?

Disney allows anyone, whether staying on property or not, to make dining reservations 180 days (currently 60 days) before travel. These reservations are called Advance Dining Reservations or ADR’s.

Is the Disney Dining Plan Worth the Money?

Planning ahead and making your dining reservations as soon as you can, will help you enjoy your favorite meals and beat the crowds!

Crystal Palace Restaurant at Disney World.
Crystal Palace Restaurant

Find out more information about dining reservations HERE. 

Rider Switch

Another way to beat the crowds at Disney World is to use Rider Switch if you are traveling with small children. 

Rider Switch is designed for guests who are visiting with a child who is too small or may not want to ride certain attractions.

Entrance to Rock 'n Roller Coaster at Disney's Hollywood Studios
Rock ‘n Roller Coaster

One adult can sit out with that child while the other adult goes on the ride.

When the adult who rode the ride is done, the other adult can then ride with up to two guests without waiting in the stand-by line!

Rider Switch Attractions

The following rides are eligible for Rider Switch. Just talk to the cast member at the entrance to the attraction and they will help you get set up with what you’ll need.

Entrance to Seven Dwarfs Mine Train at Magic Kingdom Park.
Seven Dwarfs Mine Train at Magic Kingdom

Magic Kingdom Park

Entrance to Mission Space at Epcot.
Mission Space at Epcot

Epcot

Hollywood Tower of Terror at Disney's Hollywood Studios
Hollywood Tower of Terror

Disney’s Hollywood Studios

Pandora: World of Avatar at Disney's Animal Kingdom.
Pandora: World of Avatar

Disney’s Animal Kingdom Park

Weather at Disney World in December

The weather at Disney World in December is really pleasant. The high temperatures are usually in the mid 60s – mid 70s and lows are in the mid 50s.

Graph showing Average Temperatures at Disney World in December.

The Orlando weather forecast for December shows a mix of partly cloudy days as well as scattered thunderstorms and some rain.

For up to date weather information in Orlando click here.

Disney World Hours in December

The following are the projected hours for Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Hollywood Studios, and Animal Kingdom in December. As always, these hours are subject to change so check Disney’s website for current information.

A boy in a Mickey hat in front of Tomorrowland.
Entrance to Tomorrowland

Magic Kingdom Park

  • Open from 9:00 am – 9:00 pm
  • Park Hopper Hours 2:00 pm – 9:00 pm

Epcot

  • Open from 11:00 am – 9:00 pm
  • Park Hopper Hours 2:00 pm – 9:00 pm

Hollywood Studios

  • Open from 9:00 am – 9:00 pm
  • Park Hopper Hours 2:00 pm – 9:00 pm

Disney’s Animal Kingdom

  • Open from 8:00 am – 7:00 pm
  • Park Hopper Hours 2:00 pm – 7:00 pm
View riding on Slinky Dog Dash at Hollywood Studios.
Slinky Dog Dash

Disney World Ride Closures in December

Disney is great at keeping their rides and attractions in top notch form. That is one of the reasons that I will spend more money to visit their theme parks.

For an updated list of what rides will be closed in December, visit Disney World’s website

Mickey & Minnie's Runaway Railroad.
Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway

What to Pack for Disney World in December

Are you wondering what to pack when you take a vacation to Disney World in December? You don’t want to be underprepared and end up using your vacation budget on things that could have easily been brought from home.

Check out How Amazon Can Save You Money at Disney and 10 Items you Need in your Disney Backpack to make sure you have everything you need. Also check out my ultimate packing list here!

Here are a few things you might want to consider packing if you’ll be traveling to Disney World in December.

Santa Mickey Mouse Loungefly Backpack.

Pack an Umbrella, Poncho, and Stroller Protection

The weather in Orlando can be very unpredictable. Rain storms can form and dissipate quickly daily, sometimes. Whenever you go to Disney World, you should always be prepared with a compact umbrella or a disposable rain poncho.

Ponchos can also come in handy to wear on rides like Kali River Rapids or Splash Mountain to keep your clothes nice and dry.

A Disney Parks Poncho.

If you will have a stroller with you at Disney World, you’ll want to protect it from the rain. This can be done by purchasing a universal stroller cover from Amazon, or bring a plastic shower curtain liner from the dollar store.

Secure the shower curtain liner over the stroller with clothes pins and your stroller will stay dry while you are watching a show or riding and attraction. Works like a champ!

Pack Sun Protection

Even in the winter months, the Florida sun can be brutal! Be prepared for the UV rays by packing some sunscreen, a hat, and sunglasses!

Sunscreen

Make sure to re-apply on yourself and kids often during the day. Disney World is not as fun with a sunburn!

What to Wear at Disney World in December

I love being comfortable at Disney World, so my favorite thing to wear during the day is leggings with pockets and a cute Christmas Disney t-shirt.

In the early morning and evenings, low temperatures will be in the mid 50s in December. Make sure to bring along a cute hoodie or jacket to stay warm!

A boy in Mickey ears in front of a Lion King sign at Disney's Animal Kingdom.
Disney-Themed Shirt from Amazon

Where to get Cute Disney Apparel

There are an abundance of places to get cute Disney-themed apparel for your trip. I have found many small shops on Instagram and Etsy that have adorable items! Below are some of my favorite places to shop for myself, my husband, and my kids before our Disney vacations.

Jane.com

If you’re looking for cute Disney apparel that won’t break the bank, check out Jane.com! I always look there before I go on a Disney vacation to pick up cute t-shirts for my whole family for under $20.00 per shirt!

Two Disney-themed shirts
Photo Credit: Jane.com

Jane.com is a boutique marketplace site where small shops come together to give you amazing deals! To find Disney t-shirts, dresses, kids apparel, dresses and more, head to Jane.com and type “character” or “vacation” in the search bar, and all of the cute items will appear.

If you find something you like, you’ll want to act fast. Janes’s deals change daily. To stay up to date, follow @MommyMouseClubhouse on Instagram!

Daily Boutique Deals

For more detailed info on how to order from Jane, check out my post Where I Buy My Cute Disney Shirts!

shopDisney

I’ve also had really good luck taking advantage of sales from the Disney Store. If you can catch a sale, you can save so much money over what you would pay for the same items at the parks.

Mickey Mouse Merry Christmas Spirit Jersey

Click HERE and search “Christmas Spirit Jersey” to see this adorable shirt!

Amazon

Amazon has tons of cute Disney apparel for the whole family! You can find everything from matching family Disney t-shirts, to Minnie Ears and autograph books!

Liberty Belle river boat at Disney's Magic Kingdom.

How to Save Money on Disney World Tickets and Hotels

When booking your next Disney World vacation, make sure to check out Get Away Today! I can confidently recommend them to help you plan your magical vacation because my family has been booking our Disney vacations through them since I was in junior high!

Get Away Today is an authorized Disney partner that offers DISCOUNT DISNEY WORLD TICKETS and they often offer deals like discounts on rooms, free dining, and more when you book a vacation package.

Disney World Planning Tips

There are many advantages to booking your vacation with a Travel Agent. They are able to handle changes and difficulties for you and it doesn’t cost you a thing! Read all about using a travel agent here.

Visit getawaytoday.com or give them a call at 855-GET-AWAY for current deals at Walt Disney World and tell them the Mommy Mouse Clubhouse sent you!

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