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Best Time to Visit Disneyland in 2019 and 2020

by Leap on July 10, 2019 2418 Los Angeles

Best Time to Visit DisneylandIt’s one of the most popular questions we get. I even have friends of friends message me and ask ... "Just when is the best time to visit Disneyland?" My answer is always "whenever you can!" It’s the truth. Whenever you and your family can make the trip to The Happiest Place On Earth is the best time.

But, of course, just like at Walt Disney World, there are better times to visit Disneyland than others. In this post, we're outlining the best times to visit Disneyland in 2019. For those of you looking to get a hop on next year's vacation planning, our 2020 dates and tips will help out as well. The surprise early opening of Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge on May 31, 2019 (and staggered opening of its rides), has made this year a little bit of a challenge in predicting crowds. While crowd levels, so far this summer, have been lower than expected, we expect that to change in the coming months, especially as we head into fall and winter.

Best Time to Visit Disneyland in 2019 and 2020 - Disneyland Crowd Calendar

Is It Packed at Disneyland? Here's the Easiest Way to Tell

This post is going to dive into all the nitty gritty details, and the whys and hows of crowds, but let's just cut to the chase. The easiest way to know if it will be crowded at Disneyland is to ask yourself:

  • Is it a major U.S. holiday?
  • Are most kids out of school?

If the answer is yes, to one or both of these questions, there will be bigger crowds.

Want to Know for Sure?

  • Hop straight to our Disneyland Crowd Calendar. You can view the busiest times on the Disneyland Crowd Calendar for the day, month or year.
  • If you're planning a visit, but don't see your particular dates discussed below, leap down to the comments. We frogs — and some of the hardcore Disneyland community — are hoppy to share answers.

Visiting During a Busy Time? Don't Fret!

Even during the busiest times, there are ways to skip the lines and make the most of your time. Here are our best tips to reduce waits!

Factors That Influence the Best Time to Go to Disneyland

Best Time to Visit Disneyland in - Millennium Falcon

If you’re more familiar with Cinderella Castle than Sleeping Beauty Castle, it's important to know that the best time to visit Disneyland in 2019 and 2020 isn't the same as at Disney World. The biggest difference are the locals. Disney World has a good amount of locals, but not nearly as many as those in the Los Angeles/Orange County area. Many of those locals are annual passholders who think of The Happiest Place on Earth as their second home. In other words, they pop in for a few hours here or there — maybe on a weekday, or on a spring or fall Sunday morning before heading to the beach — assuming their pass isn't blocked out.

Depending on the passport, a passholder might find himself or herself blocked out of the park on certain days or weeks, particularly those times that are especially popular with tourists — namely summer, spring break and holidays. The Disneyland blockout calendar provides a fairly good idea of the very busiest dates of the year, because these are the times when most passholders are not allowed to enter the parks. For example, during most of June through mid-August, the Southern California passholders are typically blocked from entering at least one or both parks, a sure sign that there will be tourists! One important thing to keep in mind: Crowds are higher right after major blockout periods such as summer when the locals can get back in.

Best Time to Visit Disneyland in 2019 and 2020 - Mickey in Red Car Trolley

Another factor that has more influence on crowds at Disneyland than at Disney World are the conventioneers. The Anaheim Convention Center is right across the street. What out-of-town visitor wouldn’t enjoy popping over in the afternoon and early evening for some Disney magic? It’s generally not necessary to rearrange your vacation based on a convention, but there might be one exception. Disney’s own D23 Expo, held every other year, brings flocks of fans. Those folks will plan to spend some of their hours before, during and after the Expo to play in the parks. Note that the next D23 Expo will take place in 2019.

Keep in mind that special events and holidays also influence crowds. Many people visit during Disneyland Halloween Time or the holidays to experience the magic of these seasons, and there are special events at different times throughout the year. For example, we expect this fall to be busier because of the debut this year of the Oogie Boogie Bash at Disney California Adventure — plus the opening of Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge. This is yet another reason to review our Disneyland crowd calendar — we list the holidays and special events!

Best Time to Visit Disneyland in 2019 and 2020 - Main Street USA

Disneyland's introduction of tiered pricing for one-day tickets several years ago has more of an impact on crowds than at Disney World. Think about it — more people make one-day visits to Disneyland than they do at Disney World. Now each day is categorized as either value, regular or peak pricing. During the off-seasons, Mondays through Thursdays or Tuesdays through Thursdays are generally value priced. If you add a one-day ticket to your cart, you can view Disneyland's pricing calendar — which is yet another indicator of the best and worst days to visit.

Best Time to Visit Disneyland in 2019 - Ticket Pricing

Based on all of this information, and historical crowd levels during holidays and other data, we have a pretty good idea of the very busiest dates of the year at Disneyland. But there are variables, such as the opening of Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge. We expect there will be elevated crowds for at least the remainder of the year (and we've adjusted our Crowd Calendar levels accordingly). Even with the additional space this new land will bring to Disneyland Park, we feel certain there will still be way more people who plan to visit for the out-of-this galaxy experience.

Expected Busiest Days at Disneyland in 2019

  • Jan. 1-6, 2019
  • MLK Jr. Day - Jan. 19-21, 2019
  • President's Day - Feb. 15-24, 2019
  • Spring break and Easter - March 9-April 15, April 19-22 (elevated crowds March 9-April 22, 2019)*
  • Weekends in May
  • Mid-June through Aug. 22, 2019
  • D23 Expo - Aug. 23-25, 2019
  • Southern California Select Annual Passholders back in Disneyland Park - Sept. 3-5, 2019
  • The week of Thanksgiving - Nov. 22-Dec. 1, 2019
  • Christmas week through the second week of the New Year - Dec. 21, 2019-Jan. 6, 2020

Expected Busiest Days at Disneyland in 2020

  • Jan. 1-6, 2020
  • MLK Jr. Day - Jan. 18-20, 2020
  • President's Day - Feb. 14-24, 2020
  • Spring break and Easter - March 7-April 20, 2020
  • Weekends in May
  • June 3-Aug. 11, 2020
  • The week of Thanksgiving - Nov. 20-Dec. 1, 2020
  • Christmas week through the second week of the New Year - Dec. 19, 2020-Jan. 10, 2021

*The fall of Easter impacts Disneyland crowds in the spring. Some school districts base their spring break around Easter; others do not. When Easter falls earlier in the season, March or early April, it has the effect of making a more intense, but shorter spring break season. When Easter falls later, as it does in 2019, the effect is a longer but less intense spring break season.

Best Time to Visit Disneyland in 2019 and 2020 - GotG: Mission - Breakout

Other Dates That Will Likely See Higher Crowds

Here are other days that see higher crowds, but not as high as the absolute worst days. Some of the dates listed are isolated, with the days around them generally fine, but they do bring in more locals. July 17 is the exception to this, as it is already a busy time. Know of other dates that are popular with locals? Share in comments below.

  • Aug. 19-23 and 25-30, 2019 - passholders are back in after summer blackouts (Expected to be Aug. 17-21 and 23-28, 2020)
  • Labor Day - Sept. 2, 2019; Sept. 7, 2020
  • Columbus Day (elevated crowds that week) -  Oct. 14, 2019; Oct. 12, 2020
  • Utah Education Association Convention -  Oct. 17-18, 2019*
  • Veteran's Day (and Veteran's Day Observed) -  Nov. 11, 2019; Nov. 11, 2020
  • Memorial Day - May 27, 2019; May 25, 2020
  • Disneyland's anniversary - July 17, 2019; July 17, 2020

*The Utah Education Association Board will no longer hold its annual convention, although Utah school districts may elect to hold a fall recess.

Best Time to Visit Disneyland in 2019 and 2020 - Small World Exterior

Best Time to Visit Disneyland in 2019

Now that we have the worst times to visit out of the way, let's look at the very best times to visit Disneyland! Yippee! Keep in mind that we still expect these "best times" to be more crowded after Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge opens. So while they are still good times to visit, they will busier than in years past.

  • Weekdays in January (minus the week of New Year's Day and the days around MLK Day)
  • Weekdays in February (minus the days around President's Day)
  • The first few days in March (until March 9, 2019)
  • Weekdays in the second half of April 2019
  • Weekdays in May
  • Weekends during the last two weeks of August (Mondays through Thursdays see higher crowds with passholders back in)
  • Mondays through Thursdays starting Sept. 9 through the end of October
  • Mondays through Thursdays in November (minus the week of Thanksgiving)
  • Mondays through Thursdays during the first half of December

Best Time to Visit Disneyland in 2020

  • Weekdays in January (minus the week of New Year's Day and the days around MLK Day)
  • Weekdays in February (minus the days around President's Day)
  • The first few days in March (until March 7, 2020)
  • April 20-30; May 1, 2020
  • Weekdays in May
  • Weekends during the last two weeks of August (Mondays through Thursdays see higher crowds with passholders expected to be back in)
  • The first half of September; Mondays through Thursdays for the remainder of September and October
  • Mondays through Thursdays in November (minus the week of Thanksgiving)
  • Mondays through Thursdays during the first half of December

Ta-da! There it is — the best time to visit Disneyland in 2019 and 2020! Don't forget that a solid park plan can be almost as good as traveling on a low crowd day. Check out our Disneyland Plans and Disney California Adventure Plans before your visit! Here are more tips to skip the lines at the theme parks.

Related: The Ins and Outs of Disney's Maxpass

Related: 36 Tips to Maximize Your Time at Disneyland

Keep hopping!

Keep hopping, Leap!
View Comments
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801–850 of 1528 comments
May 15, 2018 at 3:07 p.m. Derry Says...

Hope to visit Disneyland sometime! Have heard a lot about it but WDW is a lot closer to us. Thanks for the info!

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 3:06 p.m. Alexis K Says...

It's been a little less than 3 years since I've been to Disneyland and I certainly to get back there soon! Hopefully in 2019 :)

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May 15, 2018 at 3:06 p.m. Aimee Hughes Says...

Thank you for these great tips!

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May 15, 2018 at 3:06 p.m. Eric Says...

Cool!

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May 15, 2018 at 3:06 p.m. Kayleigh Says...

I have never been to Disneyland, but this post is making my miss my home, WDW. Maybe a little Disney magic in California is just what I need....

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 3:06 p.m. Rachelle Says...

I'm really hoping to make it to DL in July, 2019!

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 3:06 p.m. kmrada Says...

Used UnderCoverTourist for our recent visit in January! Great ticket prices and helpful planning.

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 3:06 p.m. Kristen Wexler Says...

Thank you for all your tips! They have made my trips to Disney parks so enjoyable.

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May 15, 2018 at 3:05 p.m. Wanda Howard Says...

very Helpful site!

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May 15, 2018 at 3:05 p.m. Dawn Panagos Says...

I'm going to bookmark this!! Perfect for if I'm able to plan a trip out there!

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May 15, 2018 at 3:05 p.m. Jenna DeYong Says...

Are the parks busier during the theme marathons?

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May 15, 2018 at 3:05 p.m. Erin Perry Says...

I've never been to Disneyland before, but I'd love to see Disneyland with its Christmas decor; to avoid crowds I'd say the first week of December would probably be the best time to do this.

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 3:05 p.m. Heather Eavers Says...

Great tips! We've been several times, but not recently so this is a great reminder/helper.

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May 15, 2018 at 3:05 p.m. Steven R. Says...

Great advice and trip planning!

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May 15, 2018 at 3:04 p.m. Eugene Says...

Love the crowd Calendar.

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May 15, 2018 at 3:04 p.m. Ashley Says...

I don't mind if the parks are busy while I'm there! A busy day at Disney is still a day at Disney! I'll take it!

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May 15, 2018 at 3:03 p.m. Cindi C Says...

I would loveeee to go to Disneyland! We’ve gone to Disney World before but would love to go to California since we’ve never been ☺️

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May 15, 2018 at 3:03 p.m. Suzanne D Says...

Great article. I love Disneyland - really itching to get back there!

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May 15, 2018 at 3:03 p.m. Katie Says...

Hope to visit during Fall Break (October) 2019!

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May 15, 2018 at 3:02 p.m. Lori Says...

Love WDW - this gives me pause to make a trip to Disneyland!!! :)

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May 15, 2018 at 3:01 p.m. Malena Jackson Says...

Only been to DL 2x but been to WDW too many to count. Sadly, both times at DL Haunted Mansion was closed for various overlays. Hope to get back soon so I can finally see DL's version of the HM!!!

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 3:01 p.m. Dawn Says...

The blog posts are so helpful! Helps me plan our vacation better

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 3 p.m. Kristen Says...

I would love to go to Disneyland one day!!!

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 3 p.m. Whitney Says...

great information!

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May 15, 2018 at 2:59 p.m. Courtney Siemer Says...

Wow! I can't start to wait to start planning!

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May 15, 2018 at 2:58 p.m. Erin Han Says...

I'm hoping to make a trip out to Disneyland in 2019! Thanks for all the great tips!

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May 15, 2018 at 2:58 p.m. Jon Says...

Really want to go back to Carsland!

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May 15, 2018 at 2:58 p.m. Alyssia Byers Says...

Rainy days are the best days to visit.

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May 15, 2018 at 2:57 p.m. Jason Bellflowers Says...

Love the crowd calendar. It was very useful during our last trip to Orlando!

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May 15, 2018 at 2:54 p.m. Torey Says...

great info!

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May 15, 2018 at 2:54 p.m. Steven Says...

I've always wanted to go to Disneyland!

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May 15, 2018 at 2:33 p.m. Theresa Hollers Says...

Disney is the greatest place on earth.

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 2:33 p.m. Theresa Hollers Says...

Disney is the best place on earth!!

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May 15, 2018 at 2:31 p.m. Jessica Lear Says...

I would be so excited to take our kids to DisneyLand. We have been to Disney World twice and love the magic your experience. I will say that both times have been during October breaks, so lines were reasonable.

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May 15, 2018 at 2:18 p.m. Shannon Says...

I can’t wait to visit Disneyland.

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May 15, 2018 at 2:09 p.m. Q Says...

Just wanted to say thanks for all the great info!

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May 15, 2018 at 1:53 p.m. Sunnie Says...

Good to know , thanks for posting!

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May 15, 2018 at 1:38 p.m. Millie Says...

Went during Halloween week two years in a row. Mornings were ok, evenings were a nightmare when the Halloween party ticket holders arrived.

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May 15, 2018 at 1:35 p.m. Don Says...

Lots of info, thank you.

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May 15, 2018 at 1:15 p.m. Taylor C Says...

Can't wait to plan our trip!

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May 15, 2018 at 1:13 p.m. Lisa O Says...

We’ve been there the week after New Year’s in 2017 and 2018. 2018 was much more crowded. I think the parks are generally more crowded now, even in the “down” times.

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 1:12 p.m. Delina Says...

This article is so helpful! Can’t wait for our trip!

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 1:06 p.m. Savanna Griffing Says...

This would be my family dream trip! Thank you for hosting this sweepstakes!

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 1 p.m. Shelley W Says...

Great tips!

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 12:46 p.m. joe Says...

just hoping to win

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May 15, 2018 at 12:39 p.m. Trinity Says...

Great tips!

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 12:39 p.m. Doris Taylor Says...

Anytime is perfect, because there is always a theme and something to do, no matter what the season is.

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 12:39 p.m. Cayman Says...

Great Blog!

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 12:35 p.m. Steve Purtee Says...

We love Disney and can't wait to get back there.

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 12:22 p.m. DCVsweep Says...

Looks Fun

Reply
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