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View Full Version : What time do you arrive at the parks and what time do you leave?


beachezncream
05-19-2008, 08:35 PM
Are you an early riser or a night owl or both?

merlinmagic4
05-19-2008, 09:03 PM
We like to get there at opening and we hardly ever close a park. We're good for about 7 hours and then it's off to the pool!

We did stay until midnight at the P&PP in April and sometimes we can close a water park but that's about as close as we get. I think the last time we saw Fantasmic! was in 2005; everyone is always too tired!

Mousemates
05-19-2008, 09:10 PM
Our strategy is a bit different in that we seldom do two days in a row actually in the parks (not counting BB and TL)...so on theme park days its often a double extra magic hour affiar....opening someplace early and then closing someplace late.

Polynesian Dweller
05-19-2008, 09:13 PM
We usually like an easy morning so get to the parks a bit late. But we almost always close a park. Love the evening hours at the parks as the lights start to come on. And, of course, the fireworks!:fworks:

biodtl
05-19-2008, 09:19 PM
We generally get to the parks mid-morning and stay until close. I would happily open and close both, but getting 3 kids - I mean 2 kids and a husband - ready in time for park opening never quite works out.

Speedy1998
05-19-2008, 09:34 PM
Well seeing as I have had CM's tell "Sir we are only open for guest with breakfast reservations" and "I am sorry sir but the store is closing." in the same day I would have to say both.

There is always time for sleep when I am not on vacation.

HndrdPrcnt
05-19-2008, 10:21 PM
Our schedules really depend on what we are trying to accomplish that day. I really love being one of the first families in line at the turnstiles for the park opening. I do see some advantages to being in the park close to closing time as well (especially on the EMH days). So, I guess the best thing would be to be there for park opening...go take an afternoon nap....then be back for the late night EMH.:thumbsup:

kakn7294
05-19-2008, 10:25 PM
Generally, we are at the park at or within 1 hr after opening and we are leaving with the herds at the close, often lingering in the shops until we are told we must leave. Who needs sleep?

McGoofy
05-19-2008, 11:51 PM
We are totally night owls!:moon: But what else would you expect from me since I am a night shift worker? :nurse: My DH and my DS are all about sleeping in, so we usually head out around 10am, play for a few hours and then come back to the resort to relax/swim. Then we will go back to the park with EMH and often stay until that is over, creating the viscious cycle of needing to sleep in the next morning. :sleepin: That's a true vacation for us--rest and relaxation. Every now and again we stray from that if we have a breakfast ressie or want to catch a park opening for a particular reason.

playdead88
05-20-2008, 05:57 AM
in the past 4 years we have hit the parks before they open and stayed until about 2pm then its the pool until about 5 or 6 we usually head back to a park to catch some fire works but some nights we are just exhausted - next year however the kids will be 8 and 15 and we are taking my sister who will be 23 so our plans will change to include some sleeping in and being night owls

Seasonscraps
05-20-2008, 06:12 AM
We get to the Animal Kingdom early but usually hit the other parks around 10. We'll leave mid afternoon and sometimes return to another park in the evening.

BritCody
05-20-2008, 06:55 AM
We are always at the parks before they open and we are one of the first ones in. As for when we leave, we typically will close the parks about 6-7 times during a 10 day vacation

letsdoitagain
05-20-2008, 06:58 AM
We try to get there at opening as early as possible and stay as late as the kids can take it, close to closing. We take an afternoon nap/break though because we go during the summer months.

RockinRollerMom
05-20-2008, 08:21 AM
Generally, we are at the park at or within 1 hr after opening and we are leaving with the herds at the close, often lingering in the shops until we are told we must leave. Who needs sleep?

:ditto: Our plan is to get to the park early, but I am happy if we make it within 1 hr of park opening. We almost always close the park, often the one with EMH. A couple days of our week long trip we will head back to the resort for an afternoon swim and maybe one day we will sleep in a little late. (normally after a really late night.) I come home totally exhausted and love it and wouldn't have it any other way!

DisneyorBust
05-20-2008, 08:35 AM
We try to be at the parks for the "opening ceremonies" especially the Magic Kingdom. We also like to stay late for the fireworks and the great feel to the parks at night. So I guess we fit both catagories.:D
We went to the Crystal Palace for breakfast (prior to park opening)pretty fantastic to be there with no one else around, this is now a must do for every trip.

TheMartellFamily
05-20-2008, 08:47 AM
We arrive maybe an hour or two after park opens and leave midday for rest and then return to stay until park closing. Our kids know that it is a benefit to rest midday so they get to stay up way past their bedtime. They love it. The parks are so gorgeous with the lights and everything that this is what we like to do.

katzctkpt
05-20-2008, 08:47 AM
We generally open up a park and leave around 1or 2 for a swim and afternoon nap about 3 hrs then it's off to dinner whereever we've made reservations then back to a park. May be the same one we left that morning or an entirely different one. Depends on our mood and emh's.

lightyearfan
05-20-2008, 09:11 AM
well for me and dw it's out about 7:30 am to goto our breakfest ADR'S at differnent resorts, then it's off to whatever park that we'll be doing for that day, and we will not leave until park close, i mean afterall we are on vacation right, we are going to milk every minute of the day enjoying our WDW experince. when dd was coming with us we would of course do things a bit different like going back to resort in the afternoon for a swim and nap, but now since she's married and it's just me and dw we do the above part of this post. our feeling is let's do as much as possible.

Victor

Dyanna
05-20-2008, 09:19 AM
We usually arrive at the parks at about 10am & stay until the fireworks & shows are over each evening.

JPL
05-20-2008, 09:30 AM
I am usually there at park open and as for leaving it depends what time security drags me out kicking and screaming ;)

Seriously though usually open to close I might not make every morning EMH but usually stay until the end of the Evening EMHs.

This just reminded me of a funny story back when they had E-ride nights. My friends decided to head back to the hotel a little early and I said I wanted to ride a few more things before heading back so I stayed. I just finished up a rideon POTc and when I tell you I was the only on the ride I'm not kidding. I could see another person in my field of view even looking back. After Pirates I headed to the from of the park grabbed a soda and a snack and noticed something going on at the Castle Stage. It was a show so I sat on a bench and watched the show and then sopmething strange happened the show started over again. I sat watching for a little while longer and notice there were no other guests in site. Near the end of the second show a man is a suit jacket approached me and said can I help you. I said nope just watching the show. He said well the parks closed an hour ago :blush: This a dress rehearsal for the new show starting soon. And he kindly escorted me to the the exit. At this time all the buses had stopped so I had to walk to the Contemporary catch a bus to DTD and them back to Riverside.

98'cpTyphoonGuard
05-20-2008, 09:35 AM
The last few years we have went for SSW and have spent 4 days at the World, 2 of which are dedicated to DHS for SSW (which we arrive for at approx. 3-4 am - yes we are crazy, but we love our soaps). So the other 2 days are used for MK, AK, and EPCOT - so needless to say we open the parks and close them down and hardly even stop to eat more than a quick snack. Gotta make the most of it....I can sleep at home....

jans2kids
05-20-2008, 12:46 PM
We are morning people. We like to be there for park opening and try to do a few EE's but not everyday. We enjoy the lower crowd levels and the morning before it gets too hot. We try to stay until 1 and go back swimming then back to a different park in the evening. We will stay until 10-11 and head back to the hotel. We did stay for the P&P party last summer until 1am and do an EMH at the MK until 1:30am but then the next day was a day off from the parks.

Venus0880
05-20-2008, 12:50 PM
We are always up crazy early due to overwhelming excitement. Therefore, we are usually one of the first groups waiting for the parks to open. Around 2 we leave to relax in the pool or nap. It usually ends up being swimming. We return near 5 or so and stay til close. For some reason, we never feel remarkable tired while there. If a park closes early, we will either stay til close or take a break and then hop to MK for the evening.

Narawen
05-20-2008, 03:04 PM
The only time we get up early is for breakfast ressies at the MK before park opening. Other times we won't get around till 10-noon. We have closed a few parks before, we try to go to the park with evening EMH and stay at least most of that time.

JuicyMoose17
05-20-2008, 03:05 PM
Both. Even-though i hate waking up early. I do it for the rides. haha

Taja
05-20-2008, 03:59 PM
We travel west to east, so we're usually still going pretty strong at 3:00 a.m. the first few days.

When I'm solo, I'll usually arrive close to park opening the last four days, take a break, then do late nights.

With my BFF, we'll usually make it to parks around 10 or 11 those last few days.

With her DD and DGD, it was more like 2 p.m. at the earliest. They closed down the food court and slushie machine every night! They do not change their west coast night owl habits at all! *LOL*

disneychic426
05-20-2008, 05:41 PM
as many others, my family and i usually get to each part atleast 30 min. before it opens, possibly earlier if we have a breakfast reservation. And we usually stay til closing :mickey:

CaptainSad
05-21-2008, 09:12 AM
I am there from open to close when I go to one of the parks. Maybe with the exception of AK. There is just to much to do with so little time.

AdventurerKim
05-21-2008, 02:57 PM
We arrive at the parks right before or just as they are opening. We leave after lunch, like around 1-2PM, go back to the hotel to relax, swim, nap, etc... then return to a park around 6PM for dinner and fun.

EJS-Houston
05-21-2008, 04:07 PM
We like to sleep in, hit the parks around lunch time and stay 'til they close (especially if there are magic hours to take advantage of).

cal5755
05-21-2008, 04:24 PM
:ditto: Our plan is to get to the park early, but I am happy if we make it within 1 hr of park opening. We almost always close the park, often the one with EMH. A couple days of our week long trip we will head back to the resort for an afternoon swim and maybe one day we will sleep in a little late. (normally after a really late night.) I come home totally exhausted and love it and wouldn't have it any other way!


:ditto: Exactly like our family... I didn't think my 3 kids would do open to close but they do... but there is BB day to relax and the last day we never do a park we sleep in, check our luggage at ME and then swim and sit by the pool til it is time to go.

TBY2225
05-21-2008, 04:32 PM
My DD6 and DS2 are very early risers, so we are always at the gates at park opening. We usually stay until after lunch and then go back to Pop to swim and nap. When it cools off in the late afternoon, we head back for a few hours.

TikiGoddess
05-21-2008, 08:41 PM
On a solo trip I will be there at opening and go until closing! Once went to the MK from 9am until 10pm, only leaving for lunch at the GF.

When traveling with the family (DD5, DD3, and DH) DH makes me slow down! We get to the park at opening (EMH if possible), leave around lunchtime (lunch at the resort is always less crowded), take a nap, eat dinner, and then return to the parks for a couple of hours. We are often back at the resort by 8pm, because the kids are so little. Usually we'll tuck the kids in (DH too, often) and I will head back out to the parks for EMH.

Kathy

Coach48
05-21-2008, 09:01 PM
Some days we arrive for opening,go for 5-6 hours,pool time,dinner,then a few hours at whatever park has EMH that night.Other days we head out a little later,catch lunch on the go,stay for closing,especially Epcot for Illuminations.

pdrlkr
05-21-2008, 09:59 PM
Get there when it opens and leave when it closes! :thumbsup: :mickey:

ASweetLov
05-21-2008, 10:44 PM
We get to the park around 10am. We like to sleep in and we dont like to rush. We do what we can and what we cant its like "hey there is always next time" so we havent left WDW feeling incomplete. We leave for our resort after the parade to rest and eat and maybe a little bit of swimming. Then go back to the park and leave after the fireworks(fantasmic, illuminations, wishes). We don't do the extra magic hours. But hey I guess thats just us lol, but we always manage to have a blast:mickey:

ParkMan
05-21-2008, 11:11 PM
We try to get there early, usually between 9 & 9:30. Typically we'll stay until at least dark. It's not uncommon to be there until closing - especially at Epcot.

Usually, if we leave early it's to go to another park where we stay until closing!

Tink#64
05-21-2008, 11:40 PM
We generally open up a park and leave around 1or 2 for a swim and afternoon nap about 3 hrs then it's off to dinner whereever we've made reservations then back to a park. May be the same one we left that morning or an entirely different one. Depends on our mood and emh's.

:yes: This is us! Almost every day, this is our routine. During that break time we get either lunch or dinner from the food court & eat poolside. Then we're refreshed & ready to head back out! We have only done the evening EMH once & we waited about an hour to do Star Tours, and when we returned to MGM/DHS the next morning at opening, we walked on with no wait! We tried one trip to stay for the EMH at MK & younger DS then 8 was actually in tears because he was so tired after Spectro & Wishes & asking if we really had to stay? :( Of course we said no & promptly returned to the resort so tired guys could get some rest. It's no fun for anyone when you're that tired & hit "The Wall"! So needless to say it works out better for us to open & close parks, regular operating hours, & take that break in between! We do usually plan at least one sleep in day, like the day that we're doing the Epcot WS, we sleep in, swim & eat & head off to Epcot around 3 & stay until after IllumiNations! I try to plan this mid week because by then we're all ready for a break! :alarm: :silly:

Gottaluvgoof
05-22-2008, 11:26 AM
We are at the parks for opening and still there when they close. We usually hurry to the buses after closing, to try and beat the crowds. It seems that never works and we end up standing in line for quite a while, so I'm thinking this year, maybe I'll stick around in the shops and see if that helps with the buses.

gmgdisneymom
05-22-2008, 11:35 AM
We like to get to the park when it opens (esp MK) and get on as many "good" rides as we can. Around lunchtime we go back to the resort and relax, nap swim etc, then go back to whatever park we have ressies for dinner, do some rides and stay until close.

My kids are early birds (always awake by 7) and can also party all nite (ds9 and dd6) I think my ds only sleeps 6 hours a nite. My dh only sleeps 4-5 hours a nite. I am the only one who needs a good 8 hours, BUT it is disney and I can always catch-up at home!:mickey:

kelly.garrett
05-22-2008, 10:23 PM
We are semi-early risers, and we usually get to a park between 9 and 11. (Disney is one of the only things that will get me up early.) ...and then we usually close a different park, but we go during an off season when they close semi-early. We rarely do EMHs.

Marker
05-23-2008, 08:49 AM
My family arrives and depart at different times.

I'm up with the sun, taking off for wherever EMH is on that particular morning. I wake up, slip on the clothes I have ready to go, and slide out the door as quietly as possible leaving them to sleep. Depending on the time, I might grab a bite for breakfast at the food court, or wait to get something at the park. I definitely grab a mug full of coffee and head to the bus. I often arrive a before the gates actually open.

Other members of my family will give me a call when they're ready to go to see where I am, and where we want to meet. They don't always arrive at the same time either.

Some time during the day, I typically hop to the park with evening EMH (if there is one that day) and will likely finish my day when they close and gently encourage me to leave. As for the other members of my family, they head back when they feel the need.

Yes, we do actually spend time together. But since we have no young children, we don't have to spend our days glued to each other either. We're all very comfortable with allowing each to set their own schedule, and sometimes agenda, it's much more relaxing that way.

If I anxiously waited around the hotel room for everyone to get up and get ready, we'd all drive each other nuts. They'd get aggrivated with me for not letting them sleep, and I'd be aggrivated with them for making me wait. That's no way to start a day.

So, after all that, to answer the question - I'm typically there both early and late. My family, not so much.

RAIDER
05-23-2008, 08:51 AM
We get there at the opening of the park and tend to leave at closing :mickey::thumbsup:

indytraveler
05-23-2008, 09:23 AM
Arrive early and stay late. makes for a long day! :D

elmjimmlm
05-23-2008, 10:06 AM
We choose what park has late EMH and close the parks at night...I dont like to get up too early and go...I like to take my time...:mickey:

CU Tiger
05-23-2008, 06:32 PM
Early enough to wonder why I woke up so early and so late that I am asleep before my head hits the pillow. We either take the day off and relax or go 110% full out to get it all in!:mickey:

CaptSmee
05-23-2008, 09:29 PM
It depends on who i'm travelling with. Usually it's there at open or close to opening and past closing...an all day affair...

droopy d.
05-25-2008, 08:46 AM
My DW is a sleeper so we generally don't get to the parks till around 11AM but we do stay at the parks till closing. This trip I've decided that whichever of the kids gets up first can go with me to the parks and we can meet up later after DW gets up.

Texas Tinkerbell Too
05-25-2008, 09:21 AM
We have always gone from sun up til sun down. I have always felt like I was going to "miss out " on something if I was not in the park at all hours of operation. This was not too bad when out trips were only 5-6 days. However, our trips keep lengthening. We will be there for 10 days this year. So, with that said... I may need to rethink our strategy. Returning for midday rest, nap or swimming at Disney... hmmm?

RALPH
05-25-2008, 04:31 PM
We usually get to the park within 45 minutes of it's opening, 1/2 hour if we can. Since we tour in August it is not to fun to tour in the hot Florida sun. We usually cut out by 1:30 or 2:00 and head back to our hotel. I head to the pool with DS to cool off, rest, and have an adult beverage, :beer: DW heads to the room to cool off in the AC and maybe take a short nap.

We then have a TS dinner and are back in a park by 7PM and usually close it depending on how much we have done.

That works for us.

Golf Grumpy
05-25-2008, 05:17 PM
Usually the first few days we are there we open and close the parks. Then after we have done that we actually sleep in some. But there have been times we would open one park then close MK or EPCOT on EMH so a nice 13-14 hours.. but that is getting more rare.

Young@Heart
05-25-2008, 05:43 PM
We open the parks, usually leave for a break around 2pm, return at 5pm, and stay 'til closing. :mickey:

bruin1344
05-25-2008, 09:33 PM
night owl, usuallly go to parks late morning and will do the emh evenings, pleasure island or boardwalk

BelleLovesTheBeast
05-27-2008, 04:04 PM
We usually arrive between 9 - 10 unless we have a character breakfast. Then 8. We stay all day until the park closes and stay for the evening EMH.

Guya103
05-27-2008, 04:12 PM
We end up at the Parks around 9:30-10:30 in the morning. If we go full throttle, we are done around 6 or so. If we take a break around 3 or 4, we are back for dinner and more fun around 6 or 7 until closing!

Just depends how late we stayed out the night before and when are dining ressies are!

One thing is for sure- it never goes the way it was planned! We live in the moment!:mickey:

TinkerbellT421
05-27-2008, 04:20 PM
Me and DBF are early risers. So usually we are up and out the door and at the first park (we work w/ all EMH) within the first 15/2- minutes of EMH opening, and we close every park every time, especially if there is EMH nights there. We usually do two parks a day. Depending on what we are trying to accomplish that day, what parks have EMH, where we feel like eating, and some other factors. But we are always opening and closing with the parks. Unless its our 2nd or 3rd trip to that one park that week, then we might skip out early and hit the hot tub :-)

AXOAlum
05-28-2008, 09:04 AM
Well seeing as I have had CM's tell "Sir we are only open for guest with breakfast reservations" and "I am sorry sir but the store is closing." in the same day I would have to say both.

There is always time for sleep when I am not on vacation.

THREE CHEERS FOR DISNEY COMMANDO STYLE!!! :mickey::party::cloud9:

We like to say to others that we often have a personal escort at MK... we just don't tell them that its the poor guy responsible for kicking us out at the end of the night :cool:

NJGIRL
05-28-2008, 11:18 AM
We usually get to the parks around 9:00 and stay until they close. We don't take a break inbetween but I do make sure we do one TS per day so we can sit down and relax for an hour or so.

Gooftroop5
05-28-2008, 02:19 PM
Depends on the park. All of them we are there to open them & usually get the first seatings for breakfast so we can get to the parks when they open. We might not close the parks we start out in but we usually will be at a park until after sunset. Only time we make an early evening is if it is early park closing time for MK. We don't park hop the days we go to MK.

I don't go to Disney to have a restful vacation. We don't get to go a lot so we want to get our moneys worth. It is go go go the whole time. We don't ask my inlaws to go with us because they can't keep up with the pace. Before I had kids we would leave the parks at closing & go to pleasure island. Still be up the next morning before 7am. With dd we stayed until just before the fireworks, illuminations, fantasmic because dd didn't like the noise.

This will be our fist time with nightime EMH so I am sure I will be going even more. I have been opening & closing the parks since I was 6 months old so I have no idea what it is like not to do it plus why anyone would not want to. :confused: :D

paragon
05-28-2008, 05:33 PM
For DW and I it varies depending on the park.
She can't ever seem to get up early enough for me, I'd love to get to a park for opening, yet we've never made it. I am definitely an early riser, I love the early mornings in warm weather. ( can't do it enough here at home though, only in spring and summer, NH winters are brutal!!! and dark ) Hopefully this year in September we will, I mentioned to her about the "opening festivities" at MK and she got excited, so hopefully she'll be up in time LOL.
AK is always an early park for us, and usually only a half day. Epcot is not our favorite by any means so there's never a rush for it, maybe we use it as a dinner park sometimes.
DHS is usually an all day deal, we arrive around ten am and stay as long as we can.
MK is the big one for us. We arrive as early as we can and almost always, always stay til closing. Last year was the first time DW had ever been there at night with the lights on, and to see the fireworks and she loved it. This year, we actually planned out our trip based on MK operating hours and EMH's. So I thinks its gonna bee a couple of long nights for us!

TIGGERSDOBOUNCE
06-08-2008, 01:19 AM
:tigger: FOR ME AND MY DW, DD, AND DS ITS OPEN AND CLOSE EVERY PARK EVERYDAY!

laughingplace<3
06-08-2008, 03:37 AM
Anywhere from 11 to 3, we sleep in late and take a long time to get ready and eat breakfast. We leave a park when it closes, and if there is EMH you can bet we'll be there until 2 am!

mainemajor
06-08-2008, 09:05 AM
We usually like an easy morning so get to the parks a bit late. But we almost always close a park. Love the evening hours at the parks as the lights start to come on. And, of course, the fireworks!:fworks:

This sums it up for us, too.
We don't like getting up and rushing around to get to the parks. We often sit by the pool and enjoy breakfast and watch people rushing off as though the fun will not be there later. I truly beleive the parks are more magical in the evenings with the lights on. Many times we will take a break mid-late afternoon back at the resort then off to a different park for the late afternoon & evening.

goon29
06-08-2008, 10:44 AM
Arrive around 10:30 AM and leave as late as possible!

laward32
06-08-2008, 11:04 AM
We like to get to the parks when they open and take a midafternoon break, then head back to the parks for closing.:mickey:

alilprincessmom99
06-08-2008, 11:13 AM
We typically arrive shortly after opening and stay until closing. Our trips are typically short only a few days at most, so we try to get the most out of our days in the parks.