Parks Empty as Disney World Dodges Hurricane

Disney empty hurricane
Credit: @ParkTwister, Twitter

Hurricane Idalia is a monster of a storm, moving fast past the panhandle region of Florida. While Walt Disney World was originally at risk of the storm’s path, the theme park never decided to close as it became clear the hurricane was trending northwest of the park. With multiple media outlets expressing concern about catastrophic conditions, people have abandoned the park this week, leaving it relatively ripe for the picking.

Disney World Hurricane Idalia Statement

Hurricane Idalia Strikes Florida

It is important to note that every hurricane should be treated with the utmost caution. Hurricane Idalia is causing catastrophic damage to Florida’s northern Gulf Coast areas. Storm surge is very destructive, and Idalia escalated quickly into a Category 4 before striking land and lowering to a Category 3 storm. However, Orlando and Central Florida have mostly dodged the worst of the weather. Because of this, Walt Disney World is uncharacteristically empty even though the weather is currently not much different than a normal summer Orlando day.

hurricane idalia disney world

Credit: National Weather Service

Disney World Empty Due to Hurricane

As long as you can deal with some rain that ebbs and flows in intensity, right now is the perfect time to hit the parks. Due to the impending storm, many guests reported almost nonexistent lines last night, even for the most popular rides across Walt Disney World Resort. As the parks open this morning, this trend is likely to continue.

Disney World offered cancellations and changes for guests booked to stay this week, and many almost certainly took it up on that. People will trend back in overnight and into the following day, but now is a rare opportunity to experience the Orlando theme park without the major lines or devastating heat that usually plagues a Disney World vacation. A little rain and wind, which often is a daily occurrence during the summer anyway, is much easier to navigate than deadly temperatures and crowds.

Woman shoved Cosmic Rewind

Credit: Disney

Eyewitness Testimony

The proof is in the pudding. Multiple park visitors across EPCOT, Hollywood Studios, Magic Kingdom, and Animal Kingdom have shown images of empty queues and paths. ParkTwister even reported on Twitter that Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind was almost a walk-on attraction during prime time last night.

The parks are dead right now! Absolutely no wait for Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind.

On Reddit, user u/leigh10021 posted an entirely empty queue for EPCOT’s Living with the Land attraction. Granted, this ride is not as good of an example as Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind, but wait times across the board are much lower than normal.

When a hurricane is about hit….waits drop 🙂
byu/leigh10021 inWaltDisneyWorld

Wait times for rides like Frozen Ever After and Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure were also cut by almost half of their typical duration. This isn’t exclusive to EPCOT, as Magic Kingdom experienced similar occurrences last night and should continue to do so this morning for a while. Granted, it was a Mickey’s Not So Scary event, but it still was uncharacteristically quiet.

Magic Kingdom was amazingly quiet today!!

byu/leigh10021 from discussion

So, if you truly want a low-crowd and less hot experience at Walt Disney World, now might be the best time to don your poncho and rush to the parks. You might get a little wet and have to deal with random bouts of heavy rain, but this is actually something you would risk anyway on a summer day. Here’s hoping those impacted by the storm manage to stay safe!

About Michael Stoyanoff

Michael is a Disney fan with an entertainment background and passion for writing. Living in Orlando, he has been around the theme parks for over a decade. In his free time he enjoys running, playing video games, and traveling the world. He also loves hanging out with his dog, Mr. Pippers the Pug.

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