Planning Your Visit to Disney World in 2024 | Magic in the Planning

Disney World in 2024: All-Day Park Hopping, The End of Park Reservations, New Attractions, and more!

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Get ready to experience the magic at Walt Disney World in 2024! It’s never too early to start planning your visit and get excited about all the amazing things coming your way. 2023 was a blast with the launch of TRON Lightcycle Run Roller Coaster in Magic Kingdom, updated nighttime shows in both Magic Kingdom and Epcot, the tasty Roundup Rodeo BBQ Restaurant in Hollywood Studios, and Epcot’s long-awaited Journey of Water, a Moana-themed interactive water adventure. And guess what? Tiana’s Bayou Adventure will be joining the fun in late 2024, taking the place of the now-closed Splash Mountain in Magic Kingdom.

Disney World has some exciting changes in store for visitors planning a trip in 2024. One major update is that park reservations will no longer be necessary for most tickets, eliminating the need for guests to make daily reservations. This change comes after a period of over three years where visitors had to secure reservations for each day of their vacation. Additionally, Disney has hinted at potential modifications to Disney Genie+, a service that assists guests with planning their park visits. These updates aim to enhance the overall experience and convenience for guests at Disney World in 2024.

 


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Disney World in 2024: News and Updates

  • Beginning on January 9, 2024, theme park reservations will no longer be required for date-based tickets. Reservations may still be needed for non-dated tickets and other admission types (student group tickets, sport and convention tickets, annual passes, etc.)
  • Also beginning on January 9, 2024, Disney World is reintroducing all-day park hopping. Since its reopening in July 2020, guests with Park Hopper tickets had to wait until 2 p.m. to visit another park. However, this restriction will be lifted, allowing visitors to freely hop between parks throughout the day.
  • Good news for Annual Passholders… Disney is introducing “good-to-go days” in 2024. These are select days when guests can visit the theme parks without needing a reservation. (Details from Disney will be released at a later date.)
  • Disney Dining Plans are returning to Walt Disney World beginning January 9, 2024, with bookings opening on May 31. Two plans will be offered – the Disney Quick Service Dining Plan or the Disney Dining Plan.
  • Although this isn’t a change, Disney has announced that Disney Resort hotel guests will continue to enjoy early theme park entry for visits through 2024. Those staying at a Disney Deluxe Resort or Deluxe Villa will also continue enjoying extended evening hours at select parks on select nights.
  • Disney has announced that they will be simplifying the Disney Genie+ experience allowing guests to plan their visit ahead of time. While details have yet to be announced, this is a very exciting change for those who don’t enjoy scheduling their Lightning Lanes inside the park on the day of their visit.

 

Year At-A-Glance

Epcot Festival of the Arts | magicintheplanning.comJanuary

  • Weather: Prepare to wear layers! January tends to be a dryer month in the parks, but the weather can be unpredictable. The average high is 72 degrees and the low is typically around 51 degrees.
  • Crowds: New Year’s, Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, and the Walt Disney World Marathon weekend tend to be busier times for Walt Disney World. If you’re visiting in January to avoid the crowds, be sure to avoid these weekends.
  • Other Considerations: Park prices, hotel prices, and airfare prices are typically lower in January as it isn’t a peak travel time. Disney is also known to offer discounts and incentives for January, so be on the lookout for these when planning your vacation! Also, plan on a few refurbishments. Because January sees fewer crowds, Disney often uses this time to refurbish bigger attractions… especially water attractions.

More about January…

February

  • Weather: February temperatures tend to be a bit cooler. Typically, you will want to layer up as mornings and evenings are cooler and afternoons warm up a bit. The average high is 75 degrees and the low is typically around 54 degrees. It is also typically a dryer month in terms of rain.
  • Crowds: February isn’t generally a peak time at Disney World, but that doesn’t mean crowds aren’t a factor. If you’re visiting in February to avoid the crowds, you may want to avoid President’s Day weekend as well as the weekend of the Disney Princess Half Marathon (which was held the final week of February in 2023). These two weekends tend to bring in crowds and were quite busy in previous years.
  • Other Considerations: Because February sees fewer crowds, Disney often uses this time to refurbish certain attractions. This includes some of the bigger water attractions since February is a cooler month.

More about February…

March

  • Weather: March is a warmer month, but you will still want to wear layers. Mornings and evenings will still be a bit chilly, but afternoons will typically be warmer. The average high is 78 degrees and the low is typically around 58 degrees. It is also typically a dryer month in terms of rain. And compared with both January and February, the days are getting a bit longer as well, which will allow more daylight hours in the parks.
  • Crowds: March is one of the busiest months of the year. With spring breaks happening all across the country, the parks will be busy… especially during the last two weeks of the month. Easter falls on March 31 this year, so be prepared for some intense crowds at the end of the month.
  • Other Considerations: Major refurbishments are usually finished in March, but there may still be a few. Disney tends to schedule their refurbishments during less busy months (such as January or February), but some of these may still be finishing up early in March.

More about March…

France in Epcot | magicintheplanning.comApril

  • Weather: Overall, the weather in Orlando is quite pleasant in April. So if you’re looking to visit Disney World without the extreme heat, this may be the perfect time to go. The average high is 83 degrees and the low is typically around 60 degrees.
  • Crowds: April tends to be less busy than March. The first two weeks will be a bit busier with the final two weeks being a great time to visit the parks if you want to avoid major crowds. Easter falls on March 31 this year, so the first week of the month could see some Easter crowds as well.
  • Other Considerations: Disney tends to schedule their refurbishments during less busy months (such as January or February), but that doesn’t mean closures can’t or won’t happen in April.

More about April…

May

  • Weather: Temperatures in May are definitely not quite as hot as in June or July, but it is definitely beginning to heat up. The average high is 88 degrees and the low is typically around 66 degrees.
  • Crowds: Expect crowds for Memorial Day Weekend! This three-day weekend does bring its fair share of crowds, but many schools are not out yet for summer so the rest of May shouldn’t be too busy.
  • Other Considerations: The first two weeks of May are an amazing time to visit Walt Disney World. Warmer weather, lower crowds, and fewer refurbishments make the first two weeks of May one of our favorite times to visit the parks!

More about May…

June

  • Weather: The average high is 90 degrees and the low is typically around 71 degrees. It is also the start of Orlando’s rainy season. That being said, most rain in June will come in short “spurts” as brief afternoon downpours are very typical.
  • Crowds: Most of June is busy, and the crowds only increase as the month goes on and schools release their students for summer break. Of the summer months, June is slightly less hot, but it is also a little more crowded because of it.
  • Other Considerations: Due to the hotter temperatures, the pools can get quite busy during the heat of the day as well as in the evenings when guests return from a day in the parks. Consider visiting in the mornings when they will be less busy.

More about June…

Stormtroopers on Rise of Resistance | Magic in the PlanningJuly

  • Weather: The weather in Orlando is quite hot in July. The average high is 92 degrees and the low is typically around 75 degrees. It is technically Orlando’s rainy season as well, so be prepared for rain. Ponchos may be a good thing to pack!
  • Crowds: July is usually less busy than June, but there are steady summer crowds for most of the month. Be prepared for an increase in crowds during the Fourth of July weekend.
  • Other Considerations: The summer sun can be quite intense, especially when combined with Florida humidity. As the parks are open longer hours each day, afternoon breaks at your resort can be a great way to beat the heat.

More about July…

August

  • Weather: Overall, the weather in Orlando is quite hot in August. The average high is 91 degrees, and the low is typically around 75 degrees. It is technically Orlando’s rainy season as well. That being said, most rain in August will come in short “spurts” rather than be an all-day thing. Brief afternoon downpours are very typical.
  • Crowds: Many schools are back in session at some point in August, so between that and the heat, many opt to avoid August when selecting their vacation dates. August is typically the least crowded of the summer months, but it does heat up a bit when it comes to temperatures. If you’re able to withstand the heat and the beginning of school isn’t an issue for you, August could be a great month to visit… especially in the final two weeks of the month.
  • Other Considerations: The Food and Wine Festival is quite popular with locals. Consider visiting Epcot on weekdays if you’re trying to avoid the crowds.

More about August…

September

  • Weather: The weather in Orlando is quite hot in September. The average high is 90 degrees and the low is typically around 72 degrees. It is technically Orlando’s rainy season as well. In fact, September is often considered to be the wettest month of the year. It is also worth noting that September has seen about six closures since 1985 due to hurricanes coming through. While that makes hurricanes a rare event, it is something to think about if planning a September vacation to Florida.
  • Crowds: September tends to be one of the lightest months of the year in terms of crowds. This is due to several factors including the start of a new school year as well as the weather. Weekends at Epcot will be busier than normal with locals due to the Food and Wine Festival, and the Magic Kingdom will undoubtedly see some smaller crowds in relation to the Disney After Hours BOO BASH. Labor Day weekend is really the only “holiday” during the month of September. And while you may see a slight uptick in crowds, it’s typically not a huge draw in terms of crowds due to most families not wanting to pull their kids out of school during their first weeks back.
  • Other Considerations: The Food and Wine Festival is quite popular with locals. Consider visiting Epcot on weekdays if you’re trying to avoid the crowds.

More about September…

Takumi-Tei in Epcot | magicintheplanning.comOctober

  • Weather: The weather shifts greatly in the month of October. We finally get some relief from the summer heat! The average high is 85 degrees and the low is typically around 65 degrees. Rain is starting to let up as well as October marks the end of hurricane season.
  • Crowds: The crowds in October 2023 will most likely be moderate and steady. While there are no major holiday weekends, Halloween festivities do bring many to the parks as well as Epcot’s Food and Wine Festival.
  • Other Considerations: Halloween in Walt Disney World is quite popular. Ticketed events are held on select nights in Magic Kingdom (which will affect park hours).

More about October…

November

  • Weather: The weather can be a bit unpredictable in the month of November, but it is typically one of the most beautiful months to visit Disney World. The average high is 79 degrees and the low is typically around 59 degrees. Hurricane season is typically over by November as well, meaning there will be fewer rainy days. You will undoubtedly want to dress in layers, however. The days (especially if they are sunny) will feel quite warm, but the evenings will probably get a bit chilly.
  • Crowds: November is fairly average in terms of crowds, with the exception of Thanksgiving week. In fact, Thanksgiving weekend is typically one of the busiest weekends of the year.
  • Other Considerations: The holidays begin throughout the parks during the month of November. Christmas decorations and holiday events typically begin the second week of November. So be prepared to celebrate!

More about November…

Christmas on Main Street in Magic Kingdom | Magic in the PlanningDecember

  • Weather: The weather can sometimes be a bit unpredictable in the month of December, but it is typically one of the most pleasant months to visit Disney World. The average high is 73 degrees and the low is typically around 53 degrees. It may be a little cooler, but it is typically one of the dryest months of the year in terms of rain. You will want to dress in layers as the days will feel warm but the evenings will undoubtedly be a bit chilly.
  • Crowds: Being in Walt Disney World for Christmas can be truly magical, but be prepared for crowds. Typically, the beginning of December sees moderate crowds with the final two weeks of December being two of the busiest weeks of the year.
  • Other Considerations: Christmas is a popular time to visit Walt Disney World. While festivities are in full swing at all four theme parks, Magic Kingdom holds ticketed events on select nights throughout the season. Get your tickets early if you want to attend, and keep in mind that these events will affect park hours at Magic Kingdom.

More about December…

 

Ride Closures and Refurbishments

*Please note that this list could change at a moment’s notice.

Magic Kingdom

  • Tron Lightcycle Power Run is now open!
  • Splash Mountain closed permanently on January 23, 2023, to become Tiana’s Bayou Adventure. The newly rethemed attraction is scheduled to open in 2024.
  • Big Thunder Mountain Railroad will be closed from January 16-20, 2024.

EPCOT

  • Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind is now open!
  • EPCOT Forever returned on April 3, 2023 (replacing Harmonious which permanently ended on April 2, 2023)
  • Journey of Water, Inspired by Moana opened on October 16, 2023!
  • Luminous: The Symphony of Us, a new nighttime spectacular will be debuting on December 5, 2023.

Hollywood Studios

  • Voyage of the Little Mermaid is permanently closed, and will be replaced with a fully reimagined production called “The Little Mermaid – A Musical Adventure.” The new show is expected to debut in Fall 2024.
  • Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith will close on January 8, 2024, for a refurbishment. It is currently scheduled to reopen in Summer 2024.
  • Jedi Training Academy: Trials of the Temple has permanently ended.

Animal Kingdom

  • Kali River Rapids will close on January 8, 2024, for its usual winter refurbishment. An opening date has yet to be announced.
  • It’s Tough to Be a Bug will be closing at some point to make way for a Zootopia Tree of Life Show. No dates have been announced.
  • Primeval Whirl is permanently closed
    • It is anticipated that Dino-Rama, as a whole, will likely close at some point to make way for a major expansion. Disney has shared plans for potential replacements, such as a Moana Mini-Land, which includes detailed concept art. Additionally, there is the possibility of a Zootopia Expansion beyond Dino-Rama. Although these proposals are promising, it should be noted that they have not yet been approved or funded by Disney. Therefore, the fate of Dino-Rama remains uncertain, but it is evident that its days are limited.

 Other

  • Blizzard Beach closed on March 19, 2023, for refurbishment, and it will reopen on November 6, 2023.
  • Typhoon Lagoon will close on November 6, 2023, for winter refurbishment. No opening date has been announced.
  • Disney Skyliner Gondolas will experience closures in mid-to-late January 2024. This will be a phased closure that will occur first with the Disney’s Hollywood Studios side of the routes, followed by the Epcot side.

 

Everything Coming to Disney World in 2024 (and Beyond)

Magic Kingdom

Tron Construction at Magic Kingdom | magicintheplanning.com

Now Open – TRON Lightcycle Run Roller Coaster – The highly anticipated Tron Lightcycle Power Run coaster, inspired by Shanghai Disneyland’s attraction, made its debut at Magic Kingdom in April 2023. This exhilarating ride offers an adrenaline-pumping race on sleek, two-wheeled Lightcycles. The introduction of this coaster also prompted a revamp of Tomorrowland in order to align with the immersive Tron Lightcycle theme.

Late 2024 – Tiana’s Bayou Adventure – In early 2023, Splash Mountain closed its doors to make way for this exciting all-new attraction. Set in the enchanting bayous of Louisiana, visitors will accompany Princess Tiana on a musical adventure as she embarks on her new venture, Tiana’s Foods. Following the events of the film, riders will assist Tiana in finding a crucial ingredient for her grand Mardi Gras celebration at Tiana’s Palace. This immersive experience promises to feature a mix of beloved and fresh characters, melodic songs, and an all-new enchanting journey with Tiana.

2024 – Country Bear Jamboree – The Country Bear Jamboree at Walt Disney World will undergo renovations and debut a fresh act in 2024. The revamped show will feature the beloved bears showcasing their unique country style while performing popular Disney songs. Disney is collaborating with renowned musicians from Nashville to ensure an authentic experience with the singing bears.

TBD – “Beyond Big Thunder Mountain” – Disney has been teasing the idea of a new expansion to Magic Kingdom they’ve referred to as “Beyond Big Thunder Mountain.” Although no specific details were shared at this year’s D23 event, speculation is ongoing, with the promise that the final plans will surpass the size of New Fantasyland and offer an immersive experience similar to Pandora and Galaxy’s Edge.

TBD – Tavern near Pirates of the Caribbean – Adventureland will soon welcome a new tavern near Pirates of the Caribbean, further immersing visitors in the story of the famous attraction.

 

Epcot

Mission Space in Epcot | magicintheplanning.comNow Open – Guardians of the Galaxy Cosmic Rewind – Now open, this brand “omnicoaster” features vehicles that rotate on the track to turn the guests to face the action happening around them.

Now Open – Journey of Water, Inspired by Moana – This new walkthrough attraction will be coming to the World Nature section of the park and will allow guests to “interact with water” just like Moana does in her film. Also beginning on October 16, Moana herself will be greeting visitors from her very own special area, conveniently situated near Journey of Water.

December 5, 2023 – Luminous: The Symphony of Us – This new nighttime spectacular at EPCOT features an original composition as well as songs from popular Disney films including Tangled, Enchanted, Frozen, Coco, Tarzan, Coco, Toy Story, and Aladdin – all woven together to remind us that we are more alike than different.

December 2023 -World Celebration Completion – Construction at EPCOT’s World Celebration section is progressing, and the construction walls are expected to be removed by December 2023. Visitors exiting Spaceship Earth will be treated to Dreamers Point, featuring a new statue of Walt Disney. Additionally, the vibrant outdoor CommuniCore Plaza Festival Area, suitable for festivals, concerts, and performances, will be completed along with the first festival programming-supported structure, CommuniCore Hall.

TBD – Asha Meet and Greet – Asha (from the upcoming Disney film Wish) will be coming to Epcot to greet guests.

TBD – Test Track – While we have no information yet about dates, Test Track will undergo a new transformation with assistance from Chevrolet, marking another evolution for this attraction since its inception with the original World of Motion.

 

Animal Kingdom

TBD – Zootopia Show – A new show based on the popular animated film Zootopia is currently being developed for the Tree of Life and will replace “It’s Tough to Be a Bug.” This upcoming experience will offer guests the opportunity to explore the different biomes featured in the movie while being accompanied by familiar characters such as Judy Hopps and Nick Wilde.

TBD – Tropical American (re-theming of Dinoland U.S.A.) – Exciting changes are coming to Dinoland U.S.A. at Disney’s Animal Kingdom! The area is set to be transformed into a “Tropical Americas” land, drawing inspiration from the enchanting film Encanto and the action-packed Indiana Jones franchise. While specific attractions have not been officially announced, there are speculations about the potential re-theming of the popular ride DINOSAUR, as it utilizes the same ride vehicles as Disneyland’s Indiana Jones attraction. We will keep you posted if Disney makes any formal announcements!

 

Hollywood Studios

Mickey and Minnie's Runaway Railway | Magic in the Planning

Spring 2024 – Star Tours – New adventures are set to debut in 2024 featuring Ahsoka. The new adventures will also be featured in Disneyland and Disneyland Paris.

 

Disney World Resorts

2024 – Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort – Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort is undergoing construction to expand its offerings with new Disney Vacation Club villas. Set to open in 2024, these accommodations will provide DVC members with additional options for their stay. The new rooms boast stunning waterfront views, with many featuring private balconies. Additionally, guests can look forward to new dining venues, swimming facilities, and various recreational areas within the resort.

2024 – Disney’s Boardwalk Inn – Disney’s BoardWalk Inn is currently undergoing renovations to enhance its guest experience. Upgrades include new furniture and decor in all hotel rooms, featuring delightful artwork showcasing beloved characters such as Mickey, Minnie, and other Disney pals leisurely exploring the BoardWalk. Additionally, the hotel lobby is set to receive a refreshing makeover.

2024 – Grand Floridian Resort & Spa – The Grand Floridian is currently undergoing a significant transformation with a captivating new design concept – Enchanted Gardens. Disney Vacation Club recently refurbished the Big Pine Key building, and these renovated rooms have been unveiled to guests on the regular resort side of the Grand Floridian, while all other buildings within the resort have also been completed. The renovation process has now progressed to the main lobby, which is being tackled in phases. However, construction work was temporarily halted for the holiday season in December 2023, and it is expected to resume in January 2024. Guests should note that both 1900 Park Fare and the Grand Floridian Tea Room are likely to remain closed until the entire reimagining project is completed.

TBD – Fort Wilderness Campground – Walt Disney World is embarking on a significant transformation at Fort Wilderness Campground by introducing new Disney Vacation Club (DVC) cabins to replace existing ones. With over 350 cabins, this development will convert the resort side of the campground into a Disney Vacation Club property. In addition to this, a series of improvement projects are currently underway at Fort Wilderness, including upgrades to the pool area and walking trails.

 

Outside the Parks

January 9, 2024 – Disney Dining Plan – Disney Dining Plans are returning to Walt Disney World beginning January 9, 2024. The dining plan is a pre-paid option for guests who book a vacation package through Disney to cover their dining expenses. Two plans will be offered – the Disney Quick Service Dining Plan or the Disney Dining Plan.

January 9, 2024 – New Park Reservation Rules – Theme park reservations will no longer be required for date-based tickets. Reservations may still be needed for non-dated tickets and other admission types (student group tickets, sport and convention tickets, annual passes, etc.)

January 9, 2024 – All-Day Park Hopping Returns – Disney World is reintroducing all-day park hopping. Since its reopening in July 2020, guests with Park Hopper tickets had to wait until 2 p.m. to visit another park. However, this restriction will be lifted, allowing visitors to freely hop between parks throughout the day.

2024 – Changes to Disney Genie+ – Disney has announced that they will be simplifying the Disney Genie+ experience allowing guests to plan their visit ahead of time. While details have yet to be announced, this is a very exciting change for those who don’t enjoy scheduling their Lightning Lanes inside the park on the day of their visit.

2024 – The Cake Bake Shop by Gwendolyn Rogers – The opening of this eatery at Disney’s BoardWalk has been postponed to early 2024. In addition to their famous cakes, the restaurant will offer savory dishes and afternoon tea. The ambiance of the restaurant is described as whimsical, designed to enhance the magical charm of Disney’s BoardWalk.

TBD – Blue Ribbon Corn Dogs – Exciting news for corn dog enthusiasts! The esteemed Blue Ribbon Corn Dogs stand, currently operating at Downtown Disney in Disneyland Resort, will soon be setting up shop at Disney’s BoardWalk on the East Coast.

 

Disney World Planning Guides

Magic in the Planning offers numerous guides to help you get started in your Disney World vacation planning! Here are some to get you started!

Disney's Yacht Club Resort | magicintheplanning.comWalt Disney World Resorts:

 

Walt Disney World Dining:

 

Spaceship Earth in Epcot | magicintheplanning.comWalt Disney World Attraction Guides:

 

Planning your Walt Disney World vacation? Be sure to visit my step-by-step guide to help you get started! 

 

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