A Walt Disney World visit is an amazing experience, no matter when you go. However, with attendance going up every year, crowds are increasing at a rapid rate, and it can be tough to see everything you want to during a trip to the park. While there's unfortunately no magic spell to clear walkways or get rid of long lines during a busy day, there are several "hacks" that Walt Disney World veterans use every day to circumvent crowds and make the most of their time. 

We'll bet you've heard of some of these before, but if you're trying to maximize your time at a crowded Disney park, try to use all of them on your next visit! You might be surprised by how much time you really can save with these simple tips.  

1. Use the second entrance at Disney's Animal Kingdom

Image: Genevieve Pelletier

There can be long lines at the entrance of the four Walt Disney World parks. No one enjoys waiting in them, but guests accept it as part of the Disney vacation package. Depending on the time you arrive, they can cause considerable wait times, especially when the park is first opening. However, if you are at Disney's Animal Kingdom there is a secret entrance you can use to bypass the usual line. Locate the Rainforest Café on your left, and enter. As you pass through the gift shop you will see a second park entrance that is usually completely empty! And best of all, this secret entrance can be used by any guest, at any time! 

2. Know your Extra Magic Hours, even if you aren't staying on property

Image: Genevieve Pelletier

Extra Magic Hours (EMH) is a perk for guests staying at an official Walt Disney World Resort. This also includes the Swan, Dolphin, Hilton, and Shades of Green. It means on selected days of the week resort guests can either enter early (1 hour) or stay late (2 hours) at a specific Walt Disney World park. This is a great way to enjoy more time with your family, and if you're staying on property you'd be foolish not to take advantage of this program. 

However, if you aren't staying on property, knowing when Exta Magic Hours happen can also save you some serious time. Though this doesn't always apply during the busiest times of the year, often guests will find that parks that have late Extra Magic Hours will have lower crowds on the following day. And if you see that a park has early Extra Magic Hours, it might be best to visit another park on that day, as it will already be populated with guests before opening. 



Used tip #2 with great success on our most recent trip. But keep it a secret because we want to keep using it!

Sorry but that monorail tip has already appeared on other theme park websites before so it's been out there for a while already, nothing really new

I am BEGGING you. Please remove the Resort Monorail tip. We need to keep some things to ourselves. Many Bothans died...

Add new comment

About Theme Park Tourist

Theme Park Tourist is one of the web’s leading sources of essential information and entertaining articles about theme parks in Orlando and beyond.

We are one of the world’s largest theme park guide sites, hosting detailed guides to more than 80 theme parks around the globe.

Find Out More About Us...

Plan Your Trip

Our theme park guides contain reviews and ratings of rides, restaurants and hotels at more than 80 theme parks worldwide.

You can even print them.

Start Planning Now...