You have your tickets. Your outfit is all picked out. You are ready to get your candy on. But don’t head out for your scary evening at the Magic Kingdom just yet.
Here are our Top 3 Things to do Before heading to Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party
#1 Take the afternoon off. Or if you can… the Day!
This is especially important if you have some mini party goers in your group. The official party time is from 7pm to midnight. And when you are paying up to $100 extra for this special party ticket— the last thing you want is a meltdown around 9pm. So take it easy that day. Sleep in. Have a late breakfast. Relax. If you are headed to the parks that morning. Head back to your resort around 11:30am – 12pm. Have a dip in the pool. Take a nap. Then head back to the park as early as 4pm (the unofficial time they will let you in). Once the party starts at 7pm, you will only have 5 Party hours to see it all. So being rested and ready to go is key to enjoying the party experience.
#2 EAT Dinner before you arrive.
Resist the urge to make dining reservations for Be Our Guest. I know they might be available. Just… Don’t do it! Don’t waste those precious party hours by sitting down and eating dinner. Instead, we suggest hitting up dinner at your resort before you head out. Or if you arrive before the parties official start time, grab a quick counter service meal. And If the kiddos aren’t hungry, grab a few of the Peanut Butter and Jelly sandwich kids meals (we usually hit up Cosmic Rays Starlight Cafe in Tomorrowland). We always chose water, carrots, and grapes as our beverage and side options. We just throw these in their candy bags. When she reaches in for candy she almost always goes for the carrots. But try to do this before 7pm. Now once 7pm hits not all of the dining locations will be open for service during the party. The last thing you want to do is realize as you are walking out at midnight is that your dinner consisted of candy. At that time your options will be limited to hot dogs at Casey’s Corner (which is often closed or has the longest line of the night), ice cream, Starbucks, the Main Street Confectionery, and that popcorn stand that is right outside City Hall. That is unless you don’t mind eating that bag of candy you just collected as a meal.
#3 Make a list of your must do’s, plan, and map out a course of action.
I promise we really are not the planning type family. Other than our Fast Passes, we usually just wing it. But if you wing it for the party — you might just find yourself missing out on a lot. So if you are going to go Commando Disney? These parties are the perfect time to do it. One of the biggest complaints that I have overheard (and even felt myself) is that I tried to cram too much into this small amount of time that I didn’t get to experience the party at its fullest. So — Do your research. Make a list of what must do attractions everyone in your party wants to ride, specialty entertainment they want to see, and characters your party wants to meet. Be prepared for long lines for both bag check, the entrance, and getting banded for the party. This process can take up to 30 minutes. So arriving early is key. Some of the character lines (examples of characters you might see: Sally and Jack, All 7 Dwarfs, and Lotso Bear) can be quite long as well (upwards to 45 minutes -1 hour wait). If you want to meet them, make a plan to see them first thing. By getting in early (around 4pm) you can knock out several attractions before the “party specific entertainment” starts. Especially if you have regular park tickets and are able to make Fast Passes up to 7pm (which are not available during the party time). Later show times and parades are often less crowded. But— if there is not-so-nice weather headed your way — these later performances can be cancelled. It’s a safe assumption that you will probably only get to experience 5-8 things during the 5 hour party time. This factors in stopping for Trick or Treat Stations and moving around congestion spots due to the parades and stage shows. Trust me. You don’t want to get stuck trying to cross Main Street from Tomorrowland to Adventureland right after a parade and while a bunch of people are hanging out to see the Sanderson Sisters. (I’m telling you… that was a huge rookie move that costs us dearly in time last year.) Having a plan of where and when you are going, and how to get there while avoiding massive amounts of people is the best use of your time.
Then again… You can also make a plan, see your kids having complete meltdowns, take a longer nap, arrive at the park around 6pm, and kiss your fast passes good-bye. But knowing what everyone wants to do is key. Move around the park in a circular pattern crossing off all your must do’s in each area. Budget about an hour for each land and Main Street attractions. This will also help you to minimize crossing the park too many times.
The most important thing is to have fun.
So there it is. Our top 3 suggestions of things to do before heading to Mickey’s Not-so-scary Halloween Party.
If you have been to Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween party, what are your tips for this spooktacular party? Let us know!