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Here's Why Walt Disney World is Better When The Weather Sucks

There will be fewer crowds

 Theme Park Tourist

The worst thing about the Disney Parks is, of course, the lines. It’s not fun having to wait to ride a popular attraction, knowing full-well that your precious time is being wasted standing still. For some attractions, Fastpass can be the answer. But, considering you have a limit on how many you can have at one time, you can’t always skip the line.

But, there is one thing that can scare away the crowds: Rain.

Nearly every afternoon at Walt Disney World, there will be a brief rain shower as weather systems move across the Florida peninsula. Those storms send guests running for cover, but they don’t really thin out crowds. However, there are some days that turn into a total washout — and on these days, the parks can sometimes feel completely and totally empty. 

Some parks, like Epcot, have all of their attractions indoors, with the only rain-soaked walking coming when you move from pavilion to pavilion. Others, like the Magic Kingdom, have a fair balance of rides that are indoors and outdoors, with most at least having an indoor queue. All Disney Parks, however, give guests plenty to do inside and away from the rain ... but you still have to trek through the rain if you really want to tour the park.

The fact of the matter is, if you’re willing to get a little wet, you can enjoy a day at the parks that is significantly less crowded than usual. 

The light will be utterly magical

 Theme Park Tourist

Yes, Walt Disney World looks amazing when you see it on a beautiful summer day with bright sunshine, a nice breeze, and not a single cloud in the sky. And, of course, the Parks look amazing at sunset, when the sky shifts into a gorgeous shade of pink and the Florida sun does its nightly dance. It almost doesn't even need to be said that the Disney Parks are completely wonderous at night.

But one of the most unique views of Walt Disney World comes when you see its soft glow in the aftermath of a Florida rain shower.

Rain usually softens the light of any beautiful place — the water vapor hangs in the air and can add a charming halo to the streetlights in the early evening. At Walt Disney World, this effect is exacerbated dramatically, and it can sometimes even result in a kind of low fog rolling in across the property.

One of the coolest things about Walt Disney World is how different it can seem from visit to visit, and rain helps transform the way we perceive the parks into something totally special.  

Cast members will be much friendlier

 christiantlambert, Flickr (license)

Image: christiantlambert, Flickr (license)

Disney cast members truly are among the most gracious and kindest employees at any major tourist destination — even as the company has shifted its labor focus to mostly college program students and undertrained staff. From the hotel front desk to the custodians in the parks, each cast member you encounter on your Disney vacation will range from pleasant to downright friendly.

But, when it rains, Disney clearly informs its cast members that they need to put in a bit of extra effort. Lots of people view rain as a vacation catastrophe, so when it happens, cast members are more likely to be in crisis-aversion mode — doing everything in their power to make sure you’re still having a good time.

No, they won’t give you a poncho for free, but if you ask nicely, they will help you find somewhere to dry off. And, they’ll give you a warm smile to help you feel better, too.

Ultimately, it’s those little things that add up to make Walt Disney World such a fun experience in the rain. Yes, seeing it in the bright sunshine is the quintessential Disney experience, but the rain adds such a unique atmosphere while thinning out the crowds that it almost makes it the better experience. 

Plus, those ponchos are incredibly stylish.

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