My number one way to de-stress? Plan the next trip to my happy place (Disney) using spreadsheets.
So, I had thought I had the dates determined. I had taken the estimated crowd levels for all the days in our potential pool of dates and calculated the average resort-wide crowd level for every configuration we were considering. The lowest crowd levels were chosen.
BUT…then I started planning individual days…we can’t visit the lowest possible park each day because we need to visit all the parks. Don’t the specific park levels matter? Also, my second favorite site for planning WDW Prep School, had slightly different estimates than my number one site, touringplans.com (the Unofficial Guide’s website).
So…I scaled WDWPrep’s levels to match the ones used by touringplans, and averaged the two. I then recalculated the average trip crowd levels for our hypothetical trip. I review the lowest ones and selected ones that worked best day-of-the-week wise. I came up with three potential trip date configurations.
Then, I made a spreadsheet and figured out what parks we’d visit on each day based on our preferences and estimated crowd levels.
After I looked at the average park crowd levels per *our* hypothetical plan, as well as the range we’d experience. I selected configuration #3. And Jimmy agreed. Though it will leave us with a weird 3-days in a row of MK. But we’re okay with that.
My only concern is with the amount of time at Epcot. I want two FULL days, but if the Pats make it to the conference championship we’ll be headed back to the resort early that day. Should I get a park hopper to split an AK day with Epcot? Maybe I could switch an MK day and an Epcot day? Still need to puzzle it out a bit.
Epcot used to be my favorite park, but they keep taking the good rides away (Horizons, Maelstrom), so I’m starting to lean more toward MK and don’t want to lose those three low-crowd MK days.
Obviously, though, I have plenty of time to work this out! Over 200 days!