One of the reasons I started Showcase the World Travel is to help Moms plan stressfree family vacations. I spend a lot of time in Disney and Mom Facebook groups answering questions and helping Moms make the best decision for their families. One of the questions I see asked the most is “Is the Halloween Party Worth It”?”
Before we get into my opinion let’s talk a little bit about what the party entails.
Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party is a hard ticketed event – meaning it is not included in the price of your park admission, it requires a separate ticket. Ticket prices vary based on date (the closer to Halloween, the more expensive) but range $75-105 for adults and $63-82 for children.
The event ticket will get you access to all of the activities involved in the party. There is SO much going on during the Halloween Party you will NOT be able to do it all. Figure out what is the most important to you and plan your night around that. You would much rather be excited you got to do more than disappointed you didn’t get to everything.
These are the must dos for me. The Boo to You Parade is my favorite thing at Walt Disney World. period.
In addition to two showings of the Boo to You Parade, there is also the No So Spooky Fireworks AND multiple showtimes for the Hocus Pocus Villain Spectacular. While the later showtimes are less crowded but can be cancelled later in the night due to weather so if these are things you don’t want to miss go to the first one!
There are some rare characters that make an appearance at the party most notably the seven dwarves, Moana and Jack and Sally from Nightmare Before Christmas. Lines for these can get extremely long and you can spend most of the party waiting for them. The best thing to do is get in line between 5:30 and 6:00 so you can be one of the first when the party starts at 7:00. Other characters (like Pooh and Stitch) show up in their Halloween best. Before you come up with your character plan check the daily meet and greet schedule… you don’t want to spend precious party time waiting to meet Gaston when you can meet him the next day!
Many people look at the candy trails and wonder why you would spend time waiting in line for candy you can buy at the store. I was one of those people until my Mother-in-Law made me go to every single one. It was so much fun!! If you are an adult and it is no longer socially acceptable to trick or treat make sure you do at least a few. There really is something magical about being dressed up and trick or treating in the Magic Kingdom. If you can go later in the night when the lines have died down. If you plan on making this priority bring your own bag — the ones the park supplies are a little small.
If you love the rides at Magic Kingdom but hate the lines the party is worth the price of admission for the exclusive access you get to a majority of the rides that remain open. There are a few attractions that change slightly for the party adding to the experience… Mad Tea Party and Space Mountain have special lighting Monsters Inc. Laugh Floor has seasonal jokes and Pirates of the Caribbean introduces live actors. No Halloween party would be complete without a ride on the Haunted Mansion.
Like all special events at Walt Disney World the Halloween party comes with exclusive treats. Each year they release a list of special treats that you can only get at the party from themed burgers, parfaits, cake pops and of course cupcakes. You can also head to the Emporium for exclusive merchandise you can only get at the party. If you are a fan of Hocus Pocus you will want to check it out.
In addition to everything else there is also all sorts of fun entertainment happening throughout the park. My favorites are the Cadaver Dans a spooky take on everyone’s favorite barbershop quartet. The dance parties are always popular with the little ones. They change from year to year but most recently they had the DescenDANCE party at Cosmic Rays, Storybook Circus Disney Junior Jam and the Monstrous Scream-O-Ween Ball Dance Party in Tomorrowland.
Another added bonus are special photo opportunities. If you have never gotten a magic shot before it is when a PhotoPass photographer will take a photo and when you see the pics afterward, you’ll see something magically inserted into the photo. Main Street and Haunted Mansion are full of them during the party.
If you had asked me a year ago I would have said unequivocally YES!! The Halloween party was my absolute favorite things about Walt Disney World. I went earlier this month and unfortunately I can no longer say that. The party has become incredibly expensive and even more crowded. I wasn’t a huge fan of the new fireworks show either. If you have older kids or all adults I would still consider the party but you have to be able to stay later in the night to get the best value of your ticket. Some people may recommend skipping the park that day to save on your park ticket but to add a day to a ticket is only a few dollars per person where as the party for a family of 4 is hundreds of dollars. It is a really cool experience that everyone should do at least once but wait until your kids are older.
You do not need theme park admission for this event. Save some energy by not going to the parks. Because it is a late night for kids and adults alike, we recommend taking it easy during the day. We like to eat a late breakfast, go shopping at Disney Springs, spend some time at the spa or pool on our party days.
There is SO much going on during the Halloween Party you will NOT be able to do it all. Figure out what is the most important to you and plan your night around that. You would much rather be excited you got to do more than disappointed you didn’t get to everything.
My standard party plan:
4:00 Enter the Park, Grab a Bite to Eat, Ride the Haunted Mansion
5:30- 6:00 Get in Line to Meet Popular Characters
7:00 The Party Starts
7:15 Meet another character, check out a trick or treat trail
7:30 – 7:45 Find a Spot for the Parade
(We try to get somewhere on Main Street that we can see the parade, fireworks and castle show- I save the spot and my husband brings back some exclusive snacks )
8:15 Boo to You Parade!
9:15 Watch the Hocus Pocus Spelltacular
10:30 – 12:00 Trick or Treat, Ride Attractions, Meet Characters
This is the only time of the year that adults are allowed to wear costumes in the park. It may seem silly but believe me… if you don’t wear one, you will wish you had. Remember it’s Florida so it will be hot — keep it light and comfortable. Per Disney costumes must be family friendly, non-violent, not contain any weapons or pointy objects, may not cover your face.
The headless horseman leads the Boo to You Parade. He will usually come down Main Street 15 – 20 minutes before parade time. Make sure you are in position prior. If you want a spot on Main Street you may want to get there an hour before — if you are running late you can usually get a good spot in Frontierland right before the start time. If you don’t want to worry about this they do have a Hallowishes! Dessert Party for an additional cost that includes preferred parade and fireworks viewing.
Halloween is my favorite holiday and Halloween at Walt Disney World really is an incredible experience. It takes the nostalgia of childhood many feel in the parks and really makes you feel like you are a kid again. If you have any questions at all don’t hesitate to reach out!
I understand how you’re feeling, I know all too well how easy it can be at the beginning to start researching online, just to find yourself 3 hours down the line more confused than when you started. But don’t panic! I can help you plan your dream Disney vacation without any of the stress of hassle – starting with the ‘A Disney Trip without Overwhelm, 5 Easy Steps’ Guide. These 5 steps will help keep you focused on organizing the best trip ever, while giving you peace of mind that everything will be done, and nothing will be left out.
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