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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!
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301–350 of 1528 comments
May 15, 2018 at 6:24 p.m. Nick C Says...

(Mouse) Fingers crossed.

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 6:23 p.m. Meg8 Says...

So many changes going on at both parks! Would love to see all of these new attractions and areas... and skip the crowds! Great info!

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May 15, 2018 at 6:23 p.m. Lara Says...

Deciding when to go is the hardest part of planning a trip!

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May 15, 2018 at 6:23 p.m. Katie H Says...

So much useful information packed into one article! I’m very happy to learn my birthday is not considered a bad time to go!!

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 6:21 p.m. Laura S. Says...

I have personally used Undercover Tourist for 8 trips to Disneyworld in the past 4 years and they are awesome! I have never had anything but positive experiences and the tickets are a savings for us!

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 6:20 p.m. Josh McD Says...

Great Information

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May 15, 2018 at 6:20 p.m. Atley Says...

the best advice is on this blog

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 6:19 p.m. IndyAndy Says...

Also look out for the last weekend of SoCal discount tickets. We went in late may of 2017 and it was insane. The last weekend of the SoCal discount tickets + Grad Night = wayyy too many people. The week after once blackout dates started for APs looked like much better crowds.

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May 15, 2018 at 6:18 p.m. TmNa Says...

Lots of great info

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May 15, 2018 at 6:18 p.m. Jasmine Seivright Says...

Planning for 2019!!!

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May 15, 2018 at 6:16 p.m. Elizabeth Hernandez Says...

This is such an informative site!!! Always get the best prices in park tickets too!! Thanks for being awesome:)

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May 15, 2018 at 6:15 p.m. Isa R Says...

I was there in 2007 and would love to go back someday. Next time I’ll be sure to be better prepared before I make travel plans. It’s good to know what days are best to go and which ones are not.

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May 15, 2018 at 6:14 p.m. Linda C Says...

Great info!

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May 15, 2018 at 6:13 p.m. Ryan Says...

Our family loves Disneyland! We try to go during off-peak times and it’s been great!

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May 15, 2018 at 6:12 p.m. Molly Says...

We can only go during school vacations but still manage to have a great trip as long as we plan well!

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May 15, 2018 at 6:12 p.m. Stephanie Schroeder Says...

I would visit DL anytime! Particularly love the fall.

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May 15, 2018 at 6:09 p.m. Elizabeth Resch Says...

Great info, Thanks!

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May 15, 2018 at 6:07 p.m. Cindy Yinger Says...

Great info

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May 15, 2018 at 6:05 p.m. Raquel Bialek Says...

Good info

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May 15, 2018 at 6:05 p.m. eRiKa Says...

Can't wait to go!

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 6:04 p.m. Natasha Rodriguez Says...

Wow I didn’t know a lot of this information. Next time I go, since my travelling is limited to summer only, end of August it is!

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 6:04 p.m. Nadia A Says...

I love Disney.

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 6:01 p.m. Susan Says...

The crowd calendar is always my first step in planning a Disney/Universal trip!

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 6 p.m. April Says...

Would love to go back!!

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May 15, 2018 at 6 p.m. Shannon F Says...

Disneyland is definitely on my bucket list!

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 6 p.m. Diane Says...

Thanks for all the great info!

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May 15, 2018 at 5:58 p.m. Jacob Shipton Says...

Disney is always a blast! Cannot wait to go again!

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May 15, 2018 at 5:58 p.m. Kandice hoen Says...

Awesome info!

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May 15, 2018 at 5:56 p.m. Brian JL Says...

Great tips. Thanks!

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May 15, 2018 at 5:56 p.m. carolyn evans Says...

Love going to Disney at Christmas!

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 5:55 p.m. Monica e Says...

Disney!

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 5:55 p.m. Leslie Ellis Says...

Fantastic Vacation! Thanks Undercover Tourist! Such great info and a real resource for vacation planning.

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 5:54 p.m. Michele Hayes Says...

I agree, any time is a good time to visit DisneyLand.

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May 15, 2018 at 5:54 p.m. Suzanne Rogers Says...

I can't wait to take my boys again, we took them when they were little and they faintly remember it.

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May 15, 2018 at 5:53 p.m. Heather Says...

WE went in 2016 for their Diamond celebration and would love to go back!

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May 15, 2018 at 5:53 p.m. Paul Says...

Love Disneyland and California Adventure cars land is amazing!

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May 15, 2018 at 5:52 p.m. christie z Says...

Just visited WDW, would love to try DL!

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May 15, 2018 at 5:50 p.m. Luis Limones Says...

I've always wanted to go to Disneyland during a holiday season.

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May 15, 2018 at 5:48 p.m. Rebecca Trump Says...

Going to Disneyland for the first time in mid-august. The LA kids will be back in school, but not the Orange County kids. Fingers crossed they're all prepping for their first big day instead of having fun at Disneyland like I will be :-)

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May 15, 2018 at 5:47 p.m. Courtney Elizabeth Says...

Awesome! Can’t wait to go for my first visit

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May 15, 2018 at 5:47 p.m. Rachel29 Says...

We've never been to Disneyland, so anytime would be great to me!

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May 15, 2018 at 5:44 p.m. Heidi McElroy Says...

Can’t waiti to visit Disneyland one day...definitely on my Disney bucket list.

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May 15, 2018 at 5:43 p.m. Sheena Jones Says...

Absolutely love this page! Tons of good information!

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 5:42 p.m. Becky Says...

Last year, we went to CA and DL July 6th and 7th and it felt like we had the parks to ourselves all morning! Even the rest of the day wasn't bad at all and we rode everything we wanted to twice!

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 5:41 p.m. Melvin Lee Says...

Undercover Tourist is a very informative place to get what's happening at Disneyland & Disney World.

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 5:41 p.m. Charlena P. Says...

Disneyland is too packed but this blog helps!

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 5:40 p.m. Cheri Says...

Thank you for all the information you provide to make a vacation perfect!

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 5:39 p.m. J Doty Says...

ANY TIME is a GREAT time to visit Disneyland, but I’d probably go during school vacation

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May 15, 2018 at 5:39 p.m. Susan Higgins Says...

Can't wait to plan our next trip!

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 5:39 p.m. Erika Says...

These are great tips. I have found them to be very accurate for DisneyWorld, but am glad for the explanations between WDW and DisneyLand.

Reply
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