Now Offering

LOWEST PRICES of the Year on
DISNEYLAND® Resort Theme Park Tickets

Extra Magic Hours - When to Use & When to Avoid

by Mommy Frog on May 10, 2018 170

When you first start planning a Walt Disney World vacation, there are a lot of acronyms and lingo that get thrown around. ADRs, MDE, FP+, EMHs ... there are so many new terms to keep up with! And most of them are really hopping important. Today, we're talking about one of them — Extra Magic Hours, or EMHs. Our hopful guide will explain what they are, how they impact crowd levels and when you should avoid the park that has them.

When to Use Extra Magic Hours - Magic Kingdom

What Are Extra Magic Hours?

Extra Magic Hours (EMH) are extended theme park hours available to Disney resort guests and some non Disney-owned hotels. On certain days of the week, guests can enter a park one hour earlier or stay in a park up to two hours later than normal park operating hours. The Extra Magic Hours are listed with regular park hours on our Orlando Crowd Calendar, so you can easily find them. It's worth mentioning that during peak times, Disney will add additional Extra Magic Hours.

If you think Extra Magic Hours strictly apply to Disney Resort guests, you are only partially correct. They are only available to Disney Resort guests, but Extra Magic Hours affect everyone.

Which Hotels Offer Extra Magic Hours?

All of Disney World's resorts and villas offer Extra Magic Hours. Additionally, the following non-Disney hotels offer Extra Magic Hours:

Guests staying at one of the above off-site hotels will need to present a valid Resort ID, while Disney resort guests will simply tap their MagicBand/RFID ticket at ride entrances to verify that they are staying on-site. During evening Extra Magic Hours, non-resort guests can remain in the park but will not be able to go on any rides. Regular theme park admission is required.

By the way, we offer discounts on hotel rooms at all of these Orlando hotels and more, so you can get a hop on the savings!

How Extra Magic Hours Affect Crowds

When to Use Extra Magic Hours - crowds

Quite simply, Extra Magic Hours strongly affect crowd levels. Think of it this way ... there are about 30,000 Disney Resort hotel rooms. That total doesn't even include non-Disney owned hotels that offer the Extra Magic Hours benefit. Since most people don't travel alone, that's A LOT of people. And while resort guests don't have to head to the park with Extra Magic Hours, many of them think that is where they are supposed to go. What's more, many of those resort guests heading to the park with Extra Magic Hours don't actually take advantage of the extra hours, making the park more congested during regular park hours. In parks with fewer rides such as Disney's Hollywood Studios, the effect is more pronounced. That said, you can do a lot within that morning Extra Magic Hour if you ride the most popular rides with the shortest durations, because it is the least busy hour of the day!

When Resort Guests Should Use Extra Magic Hours

When to Use Extra Magic Hours - Disney's Hollywood Studios

ONLY if you intend to visit during Extra Magic Hours. There is no benefit for showing up to a park with Extra Magic Hours if you don't actually attend during the Extra Magic Hour. And don't forget, it takes time to get to the parks, especially Magic Kingdom. Allow enough time to park at Ticket & Transportation Center if you're driving or to arrive at the most magical place on Earth if you're taking Disney transportation. Keep in mind that evening Extra Magic Hours, especially those earlier in the evening (say, 9 p.m. to 11 p.m. vs. midnight to 2 a.m.), tend to be better attended than morning Extra Magic Hours.

If you are Park Hopping. In this situation, you can go to the park with EMH during those hours and spend the other part of the day at a less crowded park. Example: Epcot has evening EMH from 9 p.m. until 11 p.m. Disney’s Hollywood Studios is a recommended park that day. Go to Disney’s Hollywood Studios during normal park hours, then hop to Epcot that evening during the EMH.

When to Use Extra Magic Hours - Space Mountain

If you have a Magic Your Way ticket and the overall crowd level is low.

Example: The overall resort crowd level is a 4. Magic Kingdom has morning EMH from 8-9 a.m. You can take advantage of the extra hour that morning for popular rides such as Peter Pan's FlightSpace Mountain and the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train. Be sure to use FastPass+ for any other must-do attractions that you don't think you'll get to in the morning such as meeting Elsa and Anna and Splash Mountain.

When Off-Site Guests Should Use Extra Magic Hours

There are Extra Magic Hours on every day of your visit

As mentioned above, during the busiest times of the year, even more Extra Magic Hours are added to the parks as a perk for on-site guests. You may not be able to avoid the park with EMH, especially at Magic Kingdom. Fortunately, there are more attractions here than at any of the other parks to better handle the crowds. Your best bet is to be at the park entrance before it opens when crowd levels are still at their lowest. If you have Park Hoppers, this is less of a problem. Spend the morning at Magic Kingdom and then hop to another park that doesn't have evening Extra Magic Hours in the afternoon.

There is special entertainment at a park with EMH

This happens most frequently during the least busy times of year and again affects Magic Kingdom. This is not currently a factor since there is not currently an evening parade at Magic Kingdom, but in the past there were days when the Magic Kingdom evening parade would sometimes only be scheduled on days with Extra Magic Hours. In this case, your plan of attack should again be arriving when the park opens if you have Magic Your Way tickets. If you have park hoppers, you can spend your day in another park and hop over for the nighttime entertainment an hour or so before it starts.

When to Avoid the Park with Extra Magic Hours

There are certain circumstances when you should avoid the park with Extra Magic Hours. Here are those times ...

If you are not staying at a Disney Resort or hotel offering EMH. Since you won't be able to go on any rides during Extra Magic Hours, we recommend avoiding the park that has them. Sometimes you may want to visit a park with Extra Magic Hours because it's the only day you'll be able to see a special show or parade, and sometimes during peak season, it's impossible to avoid Extra Magic Hours. For example, during the week of Christmas and New Year's Day, there are typically EMHs every day at the Magic Kingdom. During these times, it's especially good to have a solid park plan and use your FastPass+ selections wisely.

If you are staying at a Disney Resort or EMH hotel, you have a Magic Your Way ticket and the overall crowd level is high. In our opinion, the extra hour isn't worth dealing with the bigger crowds brought on by Extra Magic Hours. Unless you have Advanced Dining Reservations at the park with Extra Magic Hours, we recommend choosing another park to visit that day.

Want more advice about using Extra Magic Hours? Share your questions below! And for those of you who are park regulars, do you take advantage of Extra Magic Hours or avoid the park that has them? For more tips, check out our What to Do in Orlando page inside the Orlando Planning Timeline!

Hoppy Planning!

Keep hopping, Mommy Frog!
View Comments
<<  Newer Posts | Older Posts  >>
1–50 of 88 comments
Jun 12, 2018 at 7:31 p.m. Natalie Says...

Hey, great post

I was wondering if I am staying offsite but have an 8:05 ADR am I allowed to go on rides after breakfast since there is early morning magic hours going on or do I have to wait till 9:00 when the park opens?

Thank you,

Reply
Jun 12, 2018 at 3:37 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Natalie,

Generally, you'll have to wait until when the park opens. You'll be allowed to stay in the park, but if the park isn't officially open by the time you are done with breakfast, then you won't be allowed on the rides quite yet. We do suggest making your way to those high priority rides so you can jump in line as soon as possible!

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Jun 18, 2018 at 11:41 p.m. Natalie Says...

Hi, thank you for the response. I was wondering also how do you check in if your staying on site for extra magic hour? Do they scan magic bands or do I have to bring something?

Thank you

Reply
Jun 19, 2018 at 12:01 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Natalie!

They will simply scan your MagicBand for verification.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Jun 19, 2018 at 10:41 a.m. Natalie Says...

Hi,

Thank you so much for all your help

Reply
Jun 12, 2018 at 3:22 a.m. Brandee Says...

Why is Animal Kingdom on Dec. 12 considered a bad park to visit?

Reply
Jun 13, 2018 at 10:25 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Brandee!

There are several factors that are used in determining the park recommendations, including historical data, overall crowd levels, time of year, special events, EMHs etc. Hope this helps!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jun 9, 2018 at 7:40 p.m. Isaiah Says...

If you are staying off property, can you still get into the park during early morning magic hours? We are trying for Jedi training and Hollywood studios has morning magic hours, but we are off property.

Reply
Jun 12, 2018 at 10:52 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Isaiah,

Extra Magic Hours are reserved for those staying on-site at an official Disney Resort Hotel or at one of the above listed non-Disney hotels!

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Jun 9, 2018 at 5:36 p.m. Anisa Says...

We're visiting MK 6/22 and they do have EMH that day but we can't avoid, based on our itinerary. It's our first time to Disney and we're staying off site, but do you have any helpful tips to

1. Combat the crowds and actually get to ride the rides

2. Get into the park without major hassle and headache?

We have a reservation at 8:15 at Be our Guest (EMH is 8-9) which is a little saving grace as we get to get in?

Thanks in advance! I've loved the blog :)

Reply
Jun 12, 2018 at 10:51 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Anisa,

We have some handy Magic Kingdom Park Plans that might help you figure out which rides to prioritize/when to ride them to beat the long lines. Check out this post for handy tips on visting Disney World in the summer! Have a wonderful trip.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
May 21, 2018 at 10:27 p.m. Stephanie Says...

Hi! Thanks for this insight. I have a question I haven't been able to find an answer for on the internet yet... My family's park plan has pretty much been set and I've just found out that the day we're at Epcot has evening EMH. We have little ones and we're planning on breakfast at Akershus to beat the park opening and won't be taking advantage of the evening extra hours. Are the crowds typically there all day, or if the EMH are evening only, will we not see an upswing in crowds until later in the day? Thank you!

Reply
May 22, 2018 at 1:50 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Stephanie,

We suggest looking at the crowd level on our Crowd Calendar for the day you're planning on going to Epcot. Parks with EMH do tend to have more crowds, so if you aren't taking advantage of the EMH, we usually suggest avoiding the park that has them. If you're dead set on your plan, though, then it's good you're beating park opening! It sounds like you're getting well prepared with a park plan, so that will definitely help. Have an awesome time!

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
May 17, 2018 at 6:32 p.m. Nick Says...

Hi - I made an ADR at 8 a.m. for Be Our Guest a while ago when Magic Kingdom was scheduled to open at 9, hoping to experience the extra hour with fewer people. The hours have now changed and MK opens at 8. Should I look into cancelling my breakfast reservation so we can hit the rides during that first hour? There are no more BOG reservations available so I'm confused as to what to do for a first time visitor with 2 girls, ages 6 and 4.

Reply
May 17, 2018 at 1:44 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Nick,

Sorry to hear this! As to whether you want to cancel, that really depends on what is most important to you. You would likely spend 45 minutes to an hour at breakfast. It is still early enough that you would have low waits on many rides, but since an EMH was added, most likely it's a busy time. For your girls' ages, I would lean toward keeping the reservation at BOG, but perhaps others will share their thoughts.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
May 15, 2018 at 4:10 p.m. Lorine Lewis Says...

We love EMH!!????❤️

Reply
May 9, 2018 at 9:19 p.m. Anna Says...

I would like to ask your opinion about our visit to WDW. We will be there 7/18 - 7/20. We will be staying on-site but we don't have a park hopper. Should we go to AK on 7/18 (our first day and busy day for that park according to your Crowd Calendar) and to MK on 7/20 (also busy day but has morning EMH)? Or should we switch it and go to MK on 7/18 and to AK on 7/20 (good day to vivit the park according to your Calendar)? MK has evening EMH on 7/18 but we don't anticipate staying in the park that long. We will go to EPCOT on 7/19. Thank you for your help

Reply
May 17, 2018 at 1:17 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Anna,

We usually recommend avoiding parks with Extra Magic Hours that have an overall high crowd level. So we'd recommend avoiding Magic Kingdom on the day it's predicted to have a high crowd level and has EMH. We'd switch the days and go to Magic Kingdom on 7/18 and Disney's Animal Kingdom 7/20. Have a great trip!

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
May 17, 2018 at 8:33 p.m. Anna Says...

Thank you so much for your answer!

Reply
May 7, 2018 at 7:41 p.m. KK Says...

We are in Orlando May 31st thru June 6th. We are planning to visit AK, MK, Universal studio or Island of adventure. Which days would you recommend for each of those? Yet to buy theme tickets. Also, is it worth staying in resort for the EMH?

Reply
May 17, 2018 at 9:51 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi there,

Please check our Crowd Calendar as we have recommended parks by day to help guide you! There are are a lot of factors that families should consider on deciding where to stay. EMH is just one, but we probably wouldn't let that be the only factor in deciding.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Apr 30, 2018 at 8:35 p.m. Wayne Augustson Says...

When do kids go back to school in August?

Reply
Apr 30, 2018 at 11:39 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Wayne!

This depends entirely on the location of the school and the district itself. Our tadpoles usually head back around mid-August!

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Apr 26, 2018 at 6:54 p.m. Jen Says...

We will be visiting in June, parks from the 7th-11th. Your calendar has the parks at a crowd level of 7. We have a split stay with the first 2 nights at the Yacht Club and the rest at POR. Should we avoid the EMH during times of equal crowds? We are early risers and would like to take advantage of the walking proximity. We will rely on buses after that.

Reply
May 17, 2018 at 9:46 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jen,

If you will use EMH in the mornings, then we say go for it! If you have park hoppers, it definitely makes sense.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Apr 25, 2018 at 11:30 a.m. Kristen Says...

We are going to Disney June29-July7. On the 7/4 we were planning on heading to HS, then go to Epcott because we have a lunch reservation 2:15(8 in our party ages 15-50; one couples 20th anniversary this day) then we were hoping to go to Magic Kingdom in the evening. Would you recommend this strategy? We know it will be crowded but figured we could ride rides in MK while fireworks are happening. Thanks

Reply
Apr 26, 2018 at 10:06 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Kristen!

It sounds like you have an awesome day planned! The only potential problem here is that Magic Kingdom usually reaches max capacity on July 4, as the fireworks are incredibly popular. This means you may not be able to gain entry to the park. We'd recommend playing it by ear on that day!

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Apr 18, 2018 at 11 p.m. Angelo Says...

We will e staying on Disney property 1nd week in October and extra hour to Magic Kingdom is 8 to 9 Am on a Friday we do not have a hopper should we take advantage of EMH on a Friday how do you think the crowds will be afterwards? Or should we go on a Thursday for regular hours will the crowds be lightly through put the day ?

Reply
Apr 18, 2018 at 10:58 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Angelo!

As long as you arrive right at 8 a.m. (if not earlier) to make the most of your Extra Magic Hour, then we totally recommend it!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Apr 17, 2018 at 2:07 a.m. Candy Says...

Thanks for the helpful info! We’re heading to Epcot and HS this August. HS just added EMH for every day of our 4 day trip; only planning to do one day at each park. There’s one particular day the HS has EMH FROM 7am-12:30am. Would you go on this day or avoid the double EMH?

Reply
Apr 19, 2018 at 8:12 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Candy!

If you're ready to take on both ends of these Extra Magic Hours, it would be a GREAT day to visit the park and maximize your time. We would recommend arriving around 6:30 a.m. to get in the gate ASAP, taking a pool break at the hotel during the morning + evening crowd overlap from around 1-4 p.m., and then coming back to take advantage of those late night hours!

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Apr 24, 2018 at 6:57 a.m. Candy Says...

Thank you!! That’s a great plan.

Reply
Apr 9, 2018 at 3:56 p.m. Megan McMath Says...

Hi so I have a question and I hope that you'll be able to help me because I can't find it anywhere. We are arriving on May 13th and our first day of Disney's going to be May 14th at the animal kingdom. We planed this before knowing that they had that extra hour at 8 a.m. but that's fine. So the issue is that I'm staying with my mom at her timeshare on the 13th through the 17th and checking in on the morning of the 17th at the Grand Floridian until the 19th. Will we be able to use the magic hour on the 14th? We already customized our bands and should be getting them soon and all that but I'm not sure if I have to wait until the 17th when I check in to the Grand Floridian or if I can use it on the 14th. Thank you so much

Reply
Apr 10, 2018 at 3:45 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Megan,

Extra Magic Hours can be used starting from your first day at check-in. So, you'll have to wait to use them until your check-in at Disney's Grand Floridian! You should also check to see which parks are offering (and what time) Extra Magic Hours during your stay.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Apr 6, 2018 at 4:06 p.m. Serena Says...

Hi! I'll be in disney in the last days of April and early May. We have planned our trip thinking that going to the parks taking advantage of EMH would be a great idea but we don't have park hoppers. Will we be too affected?

Reply
Apr 6, 2018 at 11:30 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Serena!

Taking advantage of Extra Magic Hours is a great idea regardless of whether or not you have park hoppers! Just make sure you arrive on time for the EMH on the days the parks open early to make the most of it.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Mar 22, 2018 at 5:20 p.m. Jen Says...

Hi there.

Can we use EMH on the date (morning) we check into our Disney hotel? We plan on arriving very early and leaving our luggage at our hotel (assuming our room won’t be available. Will we still be allowed into the park for EMH that morning?

Thanks!

Reply
Mar 29, 2018 at 10:28 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jen,

Yes, you'll be able to use EMH on the day you check in!

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Mar 17, 2018 at 5:11 a.m. Jen Says...

Hi, we’re off-site guest. As I understood we could stay at MK in evening MH not to ride but just for seeing the water electric parade. But as for morning MH? Could we get in being off-site for shopping and meet and greet or it will be closed for us?

Reply
Mar 19, 2018 at 10:22 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jen!

As off-site guests, you are technically able to stay in the parks for evening extra magic hours if they are already in the park before it closes to off-site guests. You are correct - you are not able to ride anything or meet characters, but can stroll, eat and shop. It does not work this way for morning EMH - you must be a resort guest to be allowed in the park.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Apr 22, 2018 at 1:36 a.m. Morgan Says...

I also have a question! My boyfriend and I will be driving to magic kingdom. We are staying off site but want to stay for MH to just walk around and enjoy. Since we are driving, will we be able to get back to our car even if we stay for EMH?

Reply
Apr 23, 2018 at 8:17 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Morgan!

While we don't endorse staying for EMH if you're not staying onsite since it's not technically allowed - yes, you will be able to get back to your car.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Mar 16, 2018 at 12:44 a.m. Rachel Says...

We are staying off-site for our June trip. I’d like to use the evening emh June 12 at Epcot and June 13 at MK so I booked a campsite for checking in June 12 and out June 13. Would that work?

Reply
Mar 16, 2018 at 1:05 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Rachel!

Yes it will.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Mar 14, 2018 at 1:58 a.m. Mindi Says...

Hi! I could use some help. We will be there May 24-31. We wanted our last day (31st) to be MK so we booked dinner at BOG for 4 of us before park hours came out. Now that day is an EMH. Would you cancel the reservation and go on a less busy day? I'm trying to decide what is more important - less crowds vs BOG since it is nearing summer crowds and there are no more BOG reservations that week. Thank you for your help!

Reply
Mar 16, 2018 at 1:09 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Mindi!

Our Crowd Calendar predicts that most days of your visit will be fairly crowded. While Extra Magic Hours certainly do bring in more people, we don't think it's a substantial enough difference to cancel Be Our Guest over. Keep that reservation and enjoy dining in the Beast's castle. Try the grey stuff...we hear it's delicious ;)

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Mar 9, 2018 at 9:58 p.m. melissa hernandez Says...

Is a trip during Thanksgiving completely not worth it? It seems to be the only week my family is available to go.

Reply
Mar 12, 2018 at 3:30 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Melissa!

It is totally still worth it! We just recommend being a bit more strategic with your FastPass+ and dining reservations to make the most of your time.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Mar 1, 2018 at 2:31 p.m. Catherine Says...

Hi! We are going to Magic Kingdom for 2 days, the only 2 days we have at Disney. I have managed to get an early morning spot for Cinderella’s Castle breakfast on a day there are morning magic hours. We are not staying on site, does that mean we could wander round for a bit before our reservation but not be able to go on and rides? Can’t wait for our trip from England ????. Thank you!

Reply
Mar 5, 2018 at 1:53 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Catherine!

That is correct. In our experience, Magic Bands are checked to verify resort guests before riding any attractions. However, this downtime will be perfect for shopping and some cute photos!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Feb 26, 2018 at 3:35 a.m. Rbutler0920 Says...

I am trying to plan our schedule for a trip Sept 8-16. We normally visit MK on Tuesdays and Fridays because they are recommend slow days. We usually skip all EMH days. However, this year I am trying to plan around MNSSHP and EMH and it is getting hard! MK Tuesday and Friday both are predicted morning EMH and MNSSHP I’m not worried about MNSSHP bc I heard it is actually makes the crowd lower during the morning, but will the EMH make it busier than normal? It is still saying they will both be the lowest MK day of our week. Do you advise sicking with those days or switching? We are not planning to park hop. Also, the day I would like to go to HS has morning EMH, should we try to avoid that, or do you think it will help us get though Toy Story Land? Thanks!

Reply
Mar 6, 2018 at 10:16 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi there,

Extra Magic Hours do tend to bring in more crowds than parks with regular hours, but you are correct about MNSSHP days being less crowded in the mornings. So if you take both factors into consideration, they should cancel each other out and lead to a pretty moderate day in terms of crowds. You can check out our Crowd Calendar for details. As for Hollywood Studios, taking advantage of Extra Magic Hours is your best bet for checking out Toy Story Land! Just be sure to arrive around 45 minutes ahead of the EMH opening in order to be at the front of the lines.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Feb 22, 2018 at 3:19 a.m. GoofyDad Says...

Wow! What a fantastic website. Two questions.

(1) Is visiting a park the day after EMH a good strategy? I'm thinking that if a lot on-site guests go on an EMH day, fewer would go to the same park on the following day.

(2) What percentage of park visitors are on-site vs off-site.

Reply
Feb 21, 2018 at 10:44 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi there!

We can't give you an exact answer on percentage of on vs. off-site park visitors, but we can tell you that your plan sounds great! You're right, EMH days bring in a lot of resort guests to that park in particular, which means they'll be headed elsewhere the following day. Good thinking :)

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Feb 16, 2018 at 7:13 p.m. Shellie Says...

We are staying off-site most of the time, except for the day of our arrival and only staying on-site that one night. We purchased tickets from this site rather than with a room package. Would we be able to use the EMH at wherever they have it that night without having tickets through WDW?

Reply
Feb 20, 2018 at 10:33 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Shellie!

Yes, you'll still be able to take advantage of EMH for the day you're staying on-site! You'll receive MagicBands at the resort and the bands will be scanned during EMH.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Feb 11, 2018 at 8:28 a.m. Anissa Says...

Hello, just wondered if I can have some advice please? We are planning a trip for December 2018 (27th - roughly 5th) and looking to visit both Disney & Universal. We are looking to either try to stay on site at both resorts (split 50/50ish) to get the most out of extra hours & parking etc but trying to plan from the UK is a bit of a headache. In your opinion do we gain very much from the extra hours vs staying off-site and buying separate tickets and parking? Thank you ????

Reply
Feb 13, 2018 at 9:08 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Anissa!

Great question. We absolutely recommend staying on-site at both Disney and Universal. There are tons of perks including transportation and extra hours ... not to mention, these hotels are all gorgeous and so much fun. The extra hours help you get more done in the parks and avoid crowds for a bit, which is especially important when visiting during a busy time of year!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Feb 9, 2018 at 5:06 p.m. Vicky Says...

We will be staying on property for 6 nights at the end of April. We arrive on a Monday and while animal kingdom has EMH that morning would the crowds that came specifically for that have died down by evening say 4 or 5 pm? Or would that be a terrible choice for a first park in that situation?

Reply
Feb 9, 2018 at 2:44 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Vicky!

Great questions. While EMH certainly bring in more resort guests, we find that those crowds die down by mid-late afternoon. Arriving around 4-5 p.m. sounds like a great plan!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Feb 1, 2018 at 11:45 p.m. Donna Says...

I'd like to get your expert opinion on the better day to attend Epcot between two high crowd dates. I am staying offsite so I won't be eligible for EMH and would like to buy a one day pass for one park only. I am trying to decide between President's Day on February 19th or on February 20th which has an evening EMH. Thanks for your help!

Reply
Feb 2, 2018 at 9:41 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Donna!

Our Crowd Calendar suggests that while they'll both be very busy, Monday is likely your better choice. Extra Magic Hours will bring many resort guests in on Tuesday.

Be sure to purchase your discounted tickets here!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jan 27, 2018 at 1:44 a.m. Berta Says...

This is our second trip we are going the 4th-10th.. 9 days! We have never used the EMH... from what I’ve read you use your magic band but is there a special place to enter? We will only be using at Animal Kingdom. Any help is appreciated! Thanks

Reply
Jan 29, 2018 at 2:20 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Berta!

No worries - you'll enter the park as you normally would. Just be sure to have your MagicBand on you for entry! EMH are extra helpful at Animal Kingdom, so have fun!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jan 19, 2018 at 2:08 p.m. Katie Says...

We are going to be at the Animal Kingdom on Tuesday Feb. 6th. Is it worth doing the EMH for Avatar Flight of Passage. We weren't able to book a Fast Pass for that ride. Also what times are their Magic Hours.

Reply
Jan 23, 2018 at 12:08 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Katie!

Flight of Passage has quickly become one of our absolute favorite rides at Disney World, so we toad-ally recommend catching it during those Extra Magic Hours.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jan 18, 2018 at 2:25 p.m. David Says...

We are planning on staying offsite. We are a family of 8. Is it conceivable to got 1 night at the campsites and use extra magic hours for the 2 days for our family even if we don't plan on camping?

Reply
Jan 23, 2018 at 10:25 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi David!

Although it is feasible, you technically are not supposed to do that. We frogs don't believe in bending the rules!

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Jan 16, 2018 at 1:08 a.m. Alainya Zollinger Says...

We are coming in April for 4 days staying onsite with a park hopper. So is it best to use the extra hour then hop some that doesn't have extra hours? Trying to plan booking restaurants to see the shows and parades, do you have any suggestions? is there really no night time parade at Magic Kingdom?

Reply
Jan 16, 2018 at 3:30 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Alainya,

In our experience, we recommend using EMH for the park that has it and then hop to a park that is less crowded for the day. You can check out recommended parks (those that are predicted to be less crowded) for your dates on our Orlando Crowd Calendar. Unfortunately, there isn't a nighttime parade right now at Magic Kingdom Park, but there are nighttime fireworks shows to look forward to!

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Jan 15, 2018 at 7:53 p.m. Dean Says...

Myself and girlfriend are going April 10th for 12 days will it be very busy then? Also is there a list of all the Disney resorts with magic hours

Reply
Jan 15, 2018 at 2:28 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Dean,

You can find Extra Magic Hours listed on Disney's daily schedule.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jan 13, 2018 at 8:05 p.m. Tim Says...

If I’m staying off property Sunday night and at a Disney resort Monday through Friday, can I use the Extra Magic Hour on Monday morning?

Reply
Jan 17, 2018 at 1:35 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Tim,

Excellent question! You're in luck - yes, if you are staying at a Disney resort Monday night, you are able to use those early morning Extra Magic Hours on Monday. As long as you have your resort-linked MagicBand, you'll be good to go!

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Jan 11, 2018 at 1:06 p.m. Candace Says...

We are going the end of January--we are using Fast Pass as much as possible--I don't see a way to use the Fast Pass on the extra hour in the morning--hoped to get in one of the rides that usually has a long wait--is it possible somehow ? Thanks !

Reply
Jan 11, 2018 at 9:06 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Candace,

We actually don't recommend using a FastPass+ during the Extra Magic Hours. Lines are typically so short during these times, that it's not worth using one! Save them for later in the day when crowds increase. :)

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Jan 10, 2018 at 3:40 a.m. Max Says...

Staying off site and have plans to visit Animal Kingdom on 4/16/18, which has morning extra magic hours. I would just switch to another park that day but we have reservations for 13 people for a Tusker House breakfast that day and several other day specific dining reservations later that week at different parks. To further complicate the matter we have four kids ages 3,5,5 and 8. Can I still make Animal Kingdom work for that day or would it be better to switch parks and try to get other dining reservations?

Thanks!!

Reply
Jan 10, 2018 at 11:26 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Max!

Great question. Tusker House is one of our favorite places to eat in Animal Kingdom, and since it would be difficult to find a new reservation for 13 people elsewhere, we'd recommend keeping those plans. If you have Park Hopper tickets, enjoy breakfast at Tusker House and then try hopping to a different park for the rest of the day. If not, Animal Kingdom will be busier than normal with the Extra Magic Hours, but we have no doubt you'll still have a great time!

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Nov 23, 2017 at 3:59 p.m. successgal07 Says...

I am totally confused. Too many choices!

Would you please tell me in plain English how we can have a Disneyland Experience at Disneyworld! on a budget.

We have 2 14y olds. Not sure what park to go to, where to stay, etc. We are staying 5 days in Orlando and 3 of those days we would like to go to Disneyworld. Not sure what to do with the other 2 days. Your advice is GREATLY appreciated. We will be there from 12/11-16.

Reply
Dec 22, 2017 at 8:58 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi there,

I am so sorry for the delay in responding, but your comment ended up in our spam filter. We hope you had a great trip!!

Leap

Reply
Nov 18, 2017 at 7:31 p.m. Jordan Says...

Hey there- love the blog!

Just wondering what you think we should do for our family trip August/September 2018. We were planning on staying in Cabana Bay for our whole trip and making our own way to and from Disney when we want to visit. However, do you think it’s worth the extra cost to stay at a Disney hotel for half our trip so we can avail of the on-site transportation and EMH? Are the EMH really worth it?

Thanks,

Jordan

Reply
Dec 22, 2017 at 8:26 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jordan,

You may find it's more convenient to stay at a Disney hotel for the Disney portion of your trip, especially if it's multiple days. I would highly consider it if it's more than a day or two.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Nov 5, 2017 at 12:22 a.m. Kylie Says...

We are going to Disney World in January next year and I am confused when it has the closing time of a park at the same time as the fireworks or other night time entertainment. Is it that you can you stay in the park to watch the fireworks but the rides are just closed?

Reply
Nov 5, 2017 at 3 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Kylie,

Yes, the entertainment will go on, but the attractions will close.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
May 6, 2017 at 6:58 a.m. Callie Says...

I hadn't thought about the parks swelling with people on EMH days until planning for our upcoming trip. We really did some great thrill rides with 5 min or less wait by taking advantage of AM EMHs (I haven't done PM due to babies), but I'll tell you why I "get it" about resort guests thinking EMH park is where they should be. We traveled with a big extended family group for birthday celebration/reunion, and we had dinner reservations together every day - so that way we were all together at least once daily. Our reservations coincided with the EMH parks, so even though a good portion of our group didn't want to get on a bus at 6am and beat the crowds, they still showed up at the same park - because 1) that's where the rest of the group was and 2) we had plans there at some point during the day. Now that I know this about the crowds, probably a better plan would do to breakfast at AM EMH parks - get those short lines to ride a few, eat, then head out to another less crowded park, or schedule dinners either at parks that do not have EMH or later dinners at parks that have PM EMHs (a lot of our group used those). And on top of that, let everyone know that if they aren't going to use the AM EMHs to not feel obligated to be with those of us who are- just park hop over for the character experience!

Reply
Apr 22, 2017 at 3:18 p.m. Terry Says...

Hello! We are visiting Disney next week! :) I have a question about EMH, since we are not staying at WDW resort. I realize we would not be able to enter attractions during EMH, but would we be able to make purchases? Say we stay for the Extra Magic hours and walk around the world showcase. I did not see that detailed here, so thought I would check. Thanks in advance!

Reply
Apr 22, 2017 at 12:03 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Terry,

Since we stay at WDW using Extra Magic, we haven't thought of this. You should be fine to purchase food and beverages and gifts. Keep some cash handy!

Hoppy Planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Apr 16, 2017 at 6:20 p.m. Brad Says...

I am actually considering spending one night of an Orlando vacation (sort of an impromptu one at that) at a Disney Resort property specifically to take advantage of Evening EMH(running to midnight) at Magic Kingdom after spending most of the day at Epcot. Since I know I will be returning later in the year to visit Animal Kingdom, I opted to skip that. In addition, I plan to visit one of the water parks, so I figured the combined cost of a water park ticket and round of mini-golf more than makes up for the cost of the Park Hopper Plus add on. This article has been a lot of help planning my visits to Disney.

Reply
Apr 17, 2017 at 8:02 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Brad,

Thanks for the kind words about our blog. We hope you have a great trip!

Hoppy Planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Jan 8, 2017 at 8:36 p.m. Cat Says...

During evening EMH do they still do the fireworks at MK? I've managed to get a Be Our Guest table reservation for 8.15pm but wondering what time the fireworks would be on as don't want to miss them if they are on? Can't find a time table for the shows so not sure?

Reply
Jan 9, 2017 at 3:19 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Cat,

Depending on the day that you're visiting, yes, it's very possible the fireworks will take place on an EMH day. While Disney does not release the full schedule, you can get a head start on planning with their online calendar.

Hoppy Planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Nov 14, 2016 at noon Liz Says...

Hello,

We are going the week after Thanksgiving (Nov. 27 thru Dec 2) Will it be a good week for the EMH? Especially for Magic Kingdom and Epcot.

Thanks in advance :)

Reply
Nov 16, 2016 at 12:55 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Liz,

If you are planning to attend the EMHs, then we'd recommend them (especially if you have park hoppers). The morning EMHs on the 1st and 2nd would be most recommended.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Oct 22, 2016 at 2:27 p.m. Erin Says...

I’m wondering if your advice on EMH is any different if we are going on a “Lightest Crowds” day in late January? We are going for our first trip to WDW, 3 days, with a 4-year-old and 6-year-old.

I’d like to do Magic Kingdom on the Fri and Sun and Epcot on Sat. Magic Kingdom has morning EMH on Fri, but I've also seen that that Saturdays are the busiest for Magic Kingdom. So I’m wondering what might be more crowded, a Fri with morning EMH (the only EMH during our trip window) or a Sat? Thanks for any additional advice you can give!

Reply
Oct 25, 2016 at 12:54 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Erin,

Look at the differences in the crowd level days. If Friday is a 4 and Saturday is a 6, then most likely Friday would still be a lower crowd day at Magic Kingdom than Saturday.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Oct 14, 2016 at 4:26 a.m. BRANDY JONES Says...

I really am stuck. I have every day planned, reservations everyday even. Then they change my day at the MK to have EMH. I purposely made a reservation for Be Our Guest at 810 to be in the park early..now everyone will be there at the same time..what should I do? Any suggestions would help..this is my first time going btw.

Reply
Oct 21, 2016 at 10:11 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Brandy,

I would consider changing your breakfast at Be Our Guest if your strategy is just to get in the park early, but it really depends on when you're visiting, how busy the park is expected to be, what FastPass reservations you have etc.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Sep 10, 2016 at 7:12 a.m. Jean Says...

Hi, Just came across your blog, invaluable! Anyway we are arriving Disney 12 October for fortnight and have tickets inc 2 days disneyparks only. staying off site, would you rec either Friday 14th or Sat 15th to visit MK. Looks like closing time Friday 7pm and Sat 10pm! IS this to do with EMH for Disney resort guests on Friday?. Starting to go around in circles with all this info!! thank you.

Reply
Sep 12, 2016 at 10:50 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jean,

This is a good question, and we totally understand the dilemma. That Friday should be less busy than Saturday, because of its shorter hours (even with the EMH). You would have three extra hours by attending on Saturday, but the crowds will also be busier. If you attend Friday, you will not get to stay for the fireworks, which you would have the option to view from inside the park if you attended on Saturday. You could, though, watch HalloWishes or Wishes from outside the park. It's really up to you and what your priorities are.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Aug 29, 2016 at 8:02 p.m. Chris Says...

Trying to plan a 5day. 2 adults and a 7yr old boy. Thursday Nov 3-Nov 8th. I'm trying to NOT overdo it. Basic plan of attack is to go for AM EMH, leave at lunch, then go back to a park with PM EMH. The kid is an early riser just like his dad. My question is this - you'll notice that the Epcot half marathon is on Saturday Nov 5, so I'm viewing that day as an "AVOID EPCOT" day. So I'm trying to get all my Epcot in before Saturday. Long story short - do you think I'm crazy in scheduling Thursday the 3rd like this:

8am - Epcot EMH rides and fastpasses

11:30am - LEAVE.

12:55pm - Lunch at Mama Melrose in Hollywood (this is to get the vip fantasmic package)

2pm - back to relax at the Hotel

4pm - back to Epcot for the street performance shows - the kid will love Sergio and the Asian Acrobats.

7pm - back to Hollywood for Fantasmic 7:30pm show.

9pm back to Epcot for Illuminations show.

I'm staying at the Swan, so travel between Epcot and Hollywood should not take much time at all.

If it's actually feasible to get out of Fantasmic at 8pm, and make the Illuminations show at epcot at 9pm, I'd assume we can walk or take the water taxi from Epcot back to the Swan, and be in bed no later than 10. I'm trying to get these puzzle pieces together to make an efficient touring plan, but not overdoing it. You'll note, that I have no intention of doing any rides in the afternoon unless a great fastpass opportunity is there. The afternoon is basically shows and touring - no waiting in lines so the kid gets cranky. Mamma Melrose is already booked, so magic hours, lunch, and Fantasmic are the musts.

Reply
Sep 14, 2016 at 3:40 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Chris,

This sounds pretty ambitious, but with it being your first day of the trip, it's probably doable on adrenaline alone;) Sergio is awesome, but stressing the whole family out is not, so I would see how everyone is feeling once you get back to the hotel at 2 p.m. and then decide if you want to extend relaxation time before Fantasmic!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Sep 14, 2016 at 3:40 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Chris,

This sounds pretty ambitious, but with it being your first day of the trip, it's probably doable on adrenaline alone;) Sergio is awesome, but stressing the whole family out is not, so I would see how everyone is feeling once you get back to the hotel at 2 p.m. and then decide if you want to extend relaxation time before Fantasmic!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Aug 16, 2016 at 4:12 p.m. Stacey Says...

Hi! Thank you for your wonderful advice! We will be visiting Magic Kingdom and Hollywood Studios on Oct. 13-14, staying in a Disney Resort so we can use EMH, but only doing 1 park per day ticket. So, do we go to Magic Kingdom on Friday, Oct. 14th to use the EMH, even though a Friday might be more crowded than a Thursday? Or go Thursday and miss the EMH but hope the day is overall less crowded? Thank you! We'll go to Hollywood Studios on the other day.

Reply
Aug 16, 2016 at 1:48 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Stacey,

Thursday should be a better day for Magic Kingdom. Both nights are having the Halloween party, and since only Friday is offering EMH, resort guests who are not going to the party will likely choose it for the longer hours.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Aug 17, 2016 at 5:18 p.m. Stacey Says...

Thank you so much!

Reply
Jun 26, 2016 at 12:46 a.m. Florence Says...

We are planning to visit DHS on Fri 10/7 which closes to the general public at 7:30 but has EMH until 9:30. We are staying at a resort, so we can stay for EMH. Does this mean Fantasmic (the only showing is at 8:00) will be less crowded since it's during EMH? Do they scan Magic Bands as you enter Fantasmic to make sure you are legit being there? Or will there be tons of people still, including people who technically shouldn't be in the park?

We have a reservation for the Brown Derby+Fantasmic Package, but I really don't want to use 2 table meals each for this if it isn't necessary. Advice???

Reply
Jul 11, 2016 at 1:24 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Florence,

There is only one Fantasmic! showing right now for that date. Everyone, even those staying off site, can stay for it, so I don't think it will have a huge impact on lowering crowds.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Leave a comment
Name is required. Email is required. Please input a comment.
About Us
About Undercover Tourist

Undercover Tourist is the leading supplier of online discount tickets to Orlando, Florida-area attractions, including Walt Disney World® Resort, Universal Orlando ResortTM, SeaWorld® Orlando Resort, LEGOLAND® Florida Resort and more.

Sign up for our newsletter!
Please enter your Name
Please enter your Email address

LOWEST PRICES of the Year on Disneyland® Resort Theme Park Tickets

footer grass

Contact:  1 (800) 846-1302 (USA)  |  1 (386) 239-8624 (Worldwide)

Sign up for Our Newsletter Let's Plan a Better Family Vacation

monthly news, planning tips and special deals

Please enter your Name
Please enter your Email address

Contact Us

Send Feedback

Or call 1 (800) 846-1302 (USA)

1 (386) 239-8624 (Worldwide)


©2000–2018 Undercover Tourist. All rights reserved. | Privacy Policy | Terms & Conditions
As to Disney photos, logos, properties: ©Disney
lilypad
Newsletter logo

Sign Up for Our Newsletter

monthly news, planning tips and special deals from the Frog Family

Please enter your Name Please enter your Email address
×

Thank you for joining our email list!

Joined email list logo

You should be receiving your first email soon!
Thanks for being a part of the family.

×

Create An Account

In order to save your favorite items, you'll need to create an account.
Already have one? Sign in.

An Undercover Tourist account allows you to:

Join The Frog Family
No thanks ×
Planning an upcoming vacation?

Sign up to receive our newsletter with free printable park plans, FastPass+ recommendations and more!

Error. Please try again.


Nope, I'm not going on a trip.