Planning a Disneyland trip? I bet you’ve heard that it’s best to visit during the off-season.

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Many sources advise families to visit during the off-season to avoid peak crowds and peak prices. However, we should point out that there are important benefits to visiting Disneyland during peak season.
Disneyland’s off-season isn’t what it used to be. Disneyland feels crowded most of the time and some “peak season” days are no worse than some “off-season” days. Here are a few reasons:
Disneyland has more special events like Halloween and Holiday celebrations that draw Disney fans year-round.

Many Southern California residents have season passes with blackout dates during peak seasons. Locals fill in the gaps on off-peak days. If you truly want to avoid crowds, consider the weeks right after Halloween, New Year’s Day or the start of school – while Disneyland is taking down decorations from the last event and preparing for the next. Aim for weekdays and avoid long holiday weekends.

Disneyland’s peak seasons align with school breaks like spring break, summer vacation and winter holiday. Disney crowds can be a hassle, but so is arranging for kids to miss school and extra-curricular activities. It’s nice to have more days to plan a more leisurely vacation in the summer, or during a longer school break.

If you only get to Disneyland once every few years or even once in a lifetime, it can be heartbreaking if a favorite ride is closed during your visit. More rides are open during peak season than the off-peak season.
Disneyland takes advantage of off-peak weeks to maintain and update its rides. They want everything to be open when the park is packed, so expect a few top attractions to be off-line when it isn’t.

Disneyland opens earlier and closes later on busy days. So, if you have to spend more time in line, Disneyland tries to make up for it by giving you more time in the park.

On these days, you’ll find that crowds are lighter early in the morning and late at night. Plan to hit the most popular rides during those hours. Consider purchasing MaxPass to maximize your FASTPASS opportunities.
Not only does Disneyland give you more time in the park during peak season, they give you more fun things to do. Expect more parades, more shows, more character greetings, more street performers, more fireworks and more open rides to help visitors have a good experience on the busiest days.

Special events like Halloween Time at Disneyland Resort and Holidays at Disneyland Resort have turned off-seasons into peak seasons at Disneyland. They can be really crowded, but they mix holiday magic with Disney magic, which makes the whole experience so much more… um, magical.

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