by Brittany DiCologero and Chaz Saldi
Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party is by far our favorite ticketed event at Walt Disney World, and well worth going to if you happen to be in Orlando in September or October. As most Disney events do, the parties can require some planning if you want to make the most out of your time there, and as such we’ve decided to share some of our most helpful tips:
Did you know that you can enter the park using your Halloween ticket at 4:30 pm? The party might not start for a few more hours, but entering the park as early as possible will give you a greater value for your ticket, and allow you to enjoy some attractions you might not get to at the party. Speaking of which…
Skip the Rides
We’re not telling you what to do but… okay fine, we’re telling you what to do. Unless the day of the party is the only day you’ll be in the Magic Kingdom for the foreseeable future, or you’re only planning on squeezing in some ride time between 4:30 and 7:00, we always suggest skipping the rides. There are so many other events happening that are specific to the party, and while I love rides as much as the next person those will always be there, the party will not.
Have a Plan for the Parade
The Boo to You Parade is our favorite Disney parade, perhaps second only to Paint the Night in Disneyland. Typically we’ll end up watching it twice anyway, but especially if you do not plan to watch both parades, it is important to have a game plan. If you’re watching the first parade, follow the same set of guidelines that you would during the day for the afternoon parade– Main Street will be the most crowded, and if you must see the parade from there plan on getting there early. The second parade in general will be less crowded, especially in Frontierland or Liberty Square.
And the Fireworks…
Especially because they only happen once, so if seeing the fireworks is a priority you’ll want to plan to secure a spot for them relatively early. If it’s helpful, decide where you want to be to watch Hallowishes, and based on the schedule use this location to determine which parade would work best for where you’d be at the party at the time. We usually stay on Main Street early for the first parade and stay there for the fireworks and castle shows.
One of the most exciting parts of the Halloween party is being able to meet characters that you cannot usually find in the parks. The most popular characters to meet, (meaning the ones with the longest lines) are Jack and Sally from The Nightmare Before Christmas, and the Seven Dwarfs– the Halloween party is likely the only time you’d have the opportunity to meet all seven at once! Check the character meet and greet schedule ahead of time, and plan on spending some time waiting in line if any of the meet and greets are must-do’s. We actually try to get in line for Jack and Sally’s meet and greet before the party starts, so that once the party gets going we’ll be among the first guests in line, and we’ll have some time freed up for other things like…
Trick or Treating!
No, it isn’t just for kids, and it definitely shouldn’t be overlooked. Being able to trick or treat as an adult is very exciting, and something you should definitely take advantage of during the party! I don’t think your neighbors would appreciate if you did it at home…
Wear a Costume
Like trick or treating, wearing a costume to Walt Disney World is not something you can usually do as an adult, so take the opportunity to sport a fun costume in the Magic Kingdom! Costume guidelines have recently been updated, so just be sure to review them before settling on an outfit for the park.
Get Merchandise Early
If you’re looking for party-specific merchandise, such as Magic Bands, pins, and any passholder-exclusive items, it’s a good idea to pick some up early on during the party. Each party is allotted a limited amount of merchandise, so when they’re gone, they’re gone!
Use PhotoPass/User Friendly Camera or Phone
PhotoPass photographers will be out during Halloween parties, and especially at character meet and greets we find this service to be very helpful. There are also some interesting magic shots that you can only get during the party, and of course you’ll need to be using PhotoPass to get those! We do still suggest bringing your own camera or phone, preferably one that will be easy to use if you hand it off to another guest or cast member– some of the character meet and greets may not have PhotoPass on hand, and you want your photos to come out nice!
Get Your Tickets Early, and Have Fun!
Chances are if you’re reading this post you already have your tickets, but if not be sure to purchase them as soon as you know which date you’ll be going! The closer to Halloween it gets, the more the parties sell out. Halloween is our favorite time of year at Walt Disney World, and we would be there every year if we could!