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Experience the Magic of Disney After Hours at Magic Kingdom

by Leap on January 11, 2024
Orlando Video

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Ready to experience the magic of a Disney World park after dark? Disney After Hours at Magic Kingdom provides shorter wait times on your favorite attractions, including TRON Lightcycle / Run, which offers a standby queue! The 2024 dates run through June 27. (And your favorite frogs are offering discount tickets!) We attended the first event and have everything you need to know below!

Disney After Hours at Magic Kingdom

Overview of Disney After Hours

Disney After Hours is a three-hour, separately ticketed event that allows guests to stick around after normal park hours with limited crowds. That means you’ll encounter little-to-no lines while you enjoy rides, character meet-and-greets and other experiences at the parks. Plus, you'll get complimentary popcorn, ice cream and bottled beverages throughout the night once the event officially starts!

Disney After Hours currently takes place at Magic Kingdom, Disney's Hollywood Studios and EPCOT. Check out our complete guide to Disney After Hours so you can get the full details, plus our guide for After Hours at Hollywood Studios and After Hours at EPCOT for even more info. In the summer, you can also experience H2O Glow After Hours at Disney's Typhoon Lagoon Water Park!

See how much we got done in our vlog from the first event of the 2024 season:

Magic Kingdom After Hours Dates and Tickets

Disney After Hours at Magic Kingdom — Event check-in

After Hours at Magic Kingdom begins Jan. 11, 2024, and runs through summer 2024. The event runs from 10 p.m. to 1 a.m., and you may enter as early as 7 p.m. with an event ticket. Be sure to use the specific event turnstiles at the entrance. If you wish to enter before 7 p.m., you'll need regular park admission, plus a theme park reservation for select non-dated ticket types. If already inside the park, you can receive your wristband at select locations (we saw one at Tortuga Tavern).

Savings Alert

SAVE UP TO $8

Discount Disney After Hours tickets

GET YOUR TICKETS

  • Thursday, Jan. 11, 2024
  • Monday, Jan. 15, 2024
  • Monday, Jan. 22, 2024
  • Thursday, Feb. 1, 2024
  • Monday, Feb. 5, 2024
  • Monday, Feb. 12, 2024
  • Thursday, Feb. 29, 2024
  • Monday, March 4, 2024
  • Monday, March 18, 2024
  • Monday, April 8, 2024
  • Monday, April 22, 2024
  • Monday, April 29, 2024
  • Monday, May 13, 2024
  • Thursday, June 13, 2024
  • Thursday, June 27, 2024

For Disney Resort guests, tickets went on sale Nov. 7, 2023 (including guests booked at Walt Disney Swan and Dolphin Hotels and Shades of Green). As of Nov. 14, 2023, tickets are now available to all guests through April 8. Dates from April 22 to June 27 are available as of Jan. 31. Dates can sell out, so be sure to book as soon as possible for this popular event!

What's Offered at Magic Kingdom After Hours

Disney After Hours at Magic Kingdom - TRON Lightcycle Run at night

While most of the park is open for you to explore, not everything will be open during the event. Here are all the rides, characters and entertainment available at Magic Kingdom After Hours (we'll be sure to update the full list once we attend):

Attractions

  • Jungle Cruise
  • The Magic Carpets of Aladdin
  • Pirates of the Caribbean
  • Swiss Family Treehouse
  • Walt Disney's Enchanted Tiki Room
  • Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
  • Haunted Mansion
  • "it's a small world"
  • Mad Tea Party
  • The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh
  • Mickey's PhilharMagic
  • Peter Pan's Flight
  • Prime Charming Regal Carrousel
  • Seven Dwarfs Mine Train
  • Under the Sea ~ Journey of The Little Mermaid
  • The Barnstormer
  • Dumbo the Flying Elephant
  • Astro Orbiter
  • Buzz Lightyear's Space Ranger Spin
  • Space Mountain
  • Tomorrowland Speedway
  • Tomorrowland Transit Authority PeopleMover
  • TRON Lightcycle / Run (available via standby)

Note that Country Bear Jamboree was offered in the first few events, but it closes Jan. 27 to prepare for a new version of the show.

Characters

  • Mickey Mouse at Town Square Theater
  • Princess Fairytale Hall

Entertainment

  • Disney Enchantment — 11 p.m.

Dining

Disney After Hours — Complimentary snacks and drinks

 

Enjoy complimentary ice cream treats (Mickey bar, Mickey sandwich and strawberry bar), popcorn and bottled beverages (bottled water, Sprite, Coke, Diet Coke) from snack carts.

Select food and beverages are available for purchase at:

  • Main Street Bakery
  • Casey's Corner

Shopping

  • The Emporium
  • Box Office Gifts
  • Curtain Call Collectibles
  • Plaza del Sol Caribe Bazaar
  • Hundred Acre Goods
  • Sir Mickey's
  • Buzz Lightyear's Space Ranger Spin Photos
  • Tomorrowland Launch Depot

What's Not Offered During Disney After Hours?

Something to keep in mind for Disney After Hours is while all the rides are open, there are no stage shows and limited characters. Here are some offerings that may not be available during Disney After Hours at Magic Kingdom:

  • Attractions such as Carousel of Progress, The Hall of Presidents, Tom Sawyer Island, Walt Disney World Railroad
  • Shows such as Mickey's Royal Friendship Faire, Enchanted Tales With Belle
  • Regular or roaming characters beyond Town Square Theater or Princess Fairytale Hall

Tips and Strategy for After Hours at Magic Kingdom

Disney After Hours at Magic Kingdom — Signage at Magic Kingdom

To maximize your time at After Hours, we've compiled our top tips and strategy for Magic Kingdom:

  • Arrive as close to 7 p.m. as possible to get the most park time for your money. We recommend eating dinner during this time if you have not already (especially since most of the restaurants are closed during the event).
  • A great way to fill the pre-event time is watching Happily Ever After (the first of two nighttime spectaculars you get to enjoy!). This is also a great time to knock at some of the smaller attractions, such as The Little Mermaid, Winnie the Pooh or Magic Carpets of Aladdin.
  • You'll want to decide if your goal is to either do as many rides as possible or ride your favorites multiple times.
  • We noticed TRON seemed to remain around 30-45 minutes most of the night, with the lowest dip during the fireworks or right at the end of the night.
  • The shops and food carts close when the event ends at 1 a.m., so grab any last complimentary snacks and drinks before then.

What We Love About Disney After Hours at Magic Kingdom

Empty Main Street at end of Disney After Hours

Just How Much You Can Get Done

Even with only three hours, you can get just as many rides done as a full park day, and even potentially more. With TRON Lightcycle / Run being offered this year, this is the first time there has been a standby option since it opened, which really made our night! Plus, you get to experience TWO different fireworks in one night with Happily Ever After during regular hours and Disney Enchantment exclusively during the event.

Experiencing the Parks in a Whole New Way

It's always fun to see the theme parks at night, especially with the glow of Cinderella Castle and Main Street U.S.A. Be sure to get that empty castle photo! Magic Kingdom feels extra magical all lit up — plus, it is a great way to escape the Florida heat.

The Calmness and Lack of Crowds

Tickets are limited for this event so you'll find the park nearly empty in some places. It's very peaceful with such low crowds. Staying up late can be draining but with very little standing in line, you hardly realize how late it is. Plus, at any point, you can get a pick-me-up with free popcorn, ice cream and drinks!

Is It Worth It?

TRON standby queue at Disney After Hours

We think After Hours at Magic Kingdom is worth the cost, especially with the addition of TRON. In general, we highly recommend this event if:

  • You can book for your arrival day if you know your family can stay up late after a day of traveling. This could be especially ideal for those traveling from the West Coast. Reverse jet lag for the win!
  • You want to get a lot of rides in at Magic Kingdom and don't care as much for the characters and entertainment.
  • You are looking for a standby wait for TRON Lightcycle / Run. We know for many, this might just seal the deal! At the end of the night, we also walked on to both Peter Pan's Flight and Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, two of the most popular Magic Kingdom attractions!

After Hours might not be a good fit if ... 

  • You can only get to Magic Kingdom once during your trip and you want to experience everything that the park has to offer. The park has a variety of characters, entertainment and general ambiance that are definitely worth experiencing — especially seeing Cinderella Castle in both day and nighttime!
  • You have young tadpoles that won't make it past midnight (or perhaps you're a fully grown frog who wants to catch up on sleep — we get it!).

Do you plan on attending Disney After Hours at Magic Kingdom? Let us know your experiences in the comments below!

Related: How to Make the Most Out of Disney After Hours Events at Disney World

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