Magic Kingdom Capacity Closures

Holidays at the Magic Kingdom
Holidays at the Magic Kingdom - Photo by Steps to Magic

One of the most common questions that I get circles around the topic of travelling during peak times, like major US Holidays and summer/winter vacation periods. Unfortunately, the best advice that I can give is to know what you’re getting into if you’re having to vacation during those periods, because it’s not going to change year after year.

But, did you know that there are times that the Magic Kingdom theme park actually hits capacity? It’s true…so what should you know about this process and what can you expect to encounter?

Magic Kingdom Capacity Closures

Let’s start out with a basic understanding that you’re most likely to encounter a “capacity” issue at the Magic Kingdom, but with Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge and Pandora: The World of Avatar…it’s completely in the realm of possibility that they can happen at the other parks.


Full Disclosure

I won’t be using any of my past knowledge as a Cast Member for this article, as things change each and every single year and thus wouldn’t be updated or correct. I also won’t be publishing any capacity guest numbers, as they are used for internal purposes and don’t need to be on a trip planning website.


Does it Happen?

Yes – the Magic Kingdom actually closes on average 5-6 times a year due to capacity, with various levels of closure. The most common dates on the calendar are:

  • Christmas Day
  • New Years Eve
  • Christmas Week
  • July 4th

Capacity Closure Phases

Walt Disney World has a number of “phases” that they utilize to control crowd levels. Starting at Level 1 and maxing at Level 4, there’s a potential that your admission to the park may be restricted due to factors that range from tickets to where you’re staying and everything in between.


Phase 1 Closure

You’re looking at a restriction of guests who are intending to purchase OR have purchased a single-day ticket may not be admitted.

Guest Descriptions:

  • Multi-day or Multi-Park Tickets
  • Staying at a Disney Resort
  • Annual Passholders
  • Re-entry from Same-Day
  • Park-Hopping from another Park
  • Those with Dining or In-Park reservations
  • Those arriving via Disney Transportation (Bus, etc)

Phase 2 Closure

  • Staying at a Disney Resort
  • Annual Passholders
  • Re-entry from Same-Day
  • Park-Hopping from another Park
  • Those with Dining or In-Park reservations
  • Those arriving via Disney Transportation (Bus, etc)

Phase 3 Closure

  • Staying at a Disney Resort
  • Annual Passholders
  • Those with Dining or In-Park reservations

Phase 4 Closure

  • The park & parking lots are closed to all arriving guests

How Do you Know if a Park is Closed due to Capacity?

When you’re on vacation, especially during a busy time of year, it’s really important to be following Disney social media or have your notifications turned on for the My Disney Experience App. The team at Disney Communications are always erring on the side of caution and focus on guest satisfaction, so you can always reach out to them via twitter!


Hope this helps with your Disney World Trip Planning!

Written by Dustin Fuhs

I’m Dustin Fuhs, a theme park fanatic that has created this platform to showcase my passion, tools and opinions to create a fun and interactive experience for everyone who visits. My goal is to help you and your family have the most magical experience at Walt Disney World. In reading my articles and ideas, I hope that you can find some fantastic ways to bring your dreams into reality! If you want more Theme Park fun - listen to the We Like Theme Parks Podcast at https://welikethemeparks.podbean.com/

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