Help Me Choose Oct vs Nov 2019

clb79

Mouseketeer
Joined
Jul 29, 2009
We have a trip planned for Oct 17-21 (1/2 day on 17th + 3 full days in Parks), but are debating changing our Trip to Thanksgiving Week (5 consecutive park days between the 24th and 1st). My wife is a school teacher and we can only make it during school breaks, so we expect crowds whenever we go. Hotel rates look like we could 5 days that week instead of 4 in Oct for the same price.

The trade offs I see are:
Halloween Time vs Holiday Decorations
Monsters After Dark for IASW Holiday
Halloween Screams vs Holiday Fireworks
DCA not closing early for parties if we switch

What am I missing? Are crowds really that much worse in November? If Thanksgiving, which 5 days out of the dates above (we are leaning towards the first half of the week and making Thanksgiving Day be our last day in the Parks).

I know a lot of this is subjective depending on preference for Halloween or Holiday stuff, but want to hear opinions...
 
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tarheelalum

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jan 16, 2013
Your November dates will be much more crowded due school being out but you can stay longer then so it kind of equals out. I'd rather go after Thanksgiving than before. I suspect the crowds might be a little less, but still jammed packed.
 

longtimedisneylurker

DIS Veteran
Joined
Apr 20, 2010
I would go with the November dates with Thanksgiving as your last park day. The park hours will be longer. The Festival of Holidays will also be going on which means food booths and additional holiday entertainment in DCA. You don't say if you are driving or flying, but fwiw, we have always found the Friday to be a far better day that the Saturday or Sunday to drive home after Thanksgiving.
 
  • chickapin parterre

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Dec 18, 2014
    Is UEA in play for the October Dates?...it seems that I read here last year that there is no longer a UEA. If UEA still exists for those dates, then there will be more children and large family reunions happening on your date, which could be switch off for more scary E attractions available for october. October will provide for a better chance of warm weather if you are leaving a cold area to travel to California. Thanksgiving is at its latest date and that week could make a difference for cold and wind cancelling air events.....though in 2017 it nearly reached 100 degrees on Thanksgiving day.

    I wouldn't consider ISWA holiday a viable reason to make a choice.

    and ...have you visited Christmas? or Halloween
     

    clb79

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Jul 29, 2009
    We are actually from Utah so we know all about UEA (no Conference anymore, but still Fall Break for a lot of us and that is why we had those dates planned). We have been during both seasons, it’s been 8 or 9 years though (most recent trip was 3 years ago in July).

    It will be warmer then home either way, so that is a plus no matter what.

    Festival of Holidays is something I had forgot about that we always thought would be fun to experience...
     
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    theluckyrabbit

    Moderator
    Moderator
    Joined
    Jul 23, 2012
    Do Disneyland Candy Canes make any difference? The first date for the handmade candy canes is usually the day after Thanksgiving, at DL. If you've ever dreamed of getting one of these beauties, your second set of dates would give you a chance!
     

    disneycat321

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jan 13, 2013
    I'm a teacher, so I get it - we always go at busy times.

    Given those choices, I'd pick Thanksgiving, 100%, based solely on the fact that Christmas is my favorite time of year at Disneyland. We're going over my district's long October weekend this year, but planning on Thanksgiving next year. I do think Thanksgiving week is likely to be more crowded than your October dates, but it would be worth it to me for the theming and decorations.
     
  • tsumgirl

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Jul 27, 2019
    I would go with your Nov. dates, with Thanksgiving or Black Friday as your last day. It gives you more days in the park, longer hours, and more seasonal events and entertainment (assuming you're not attending the Oogie Boogie Bash). Unless you have a strong attachment to Halloween, it seems like you'd get more out of a Nov. trip with the added benefit of flexibility in your dates.
     

    ab21au

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Aug 15, 2019
    November. I have arrived on Thanksgiving weekend for a week and although the crowds were heavy on the weekend, it is still a magical time. As everyone always says, get to the park early. This time it is October but I wish it was the week after thanksgiving. The holiday decor is fabulous.
     
  • gpjacobs

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Jul 2, 2019
    You really can't go wrong but I'd go in November, when you can go longer. Get to the parks early to avoid crowds + consider utilizing. You'll have a magical time!
     

    nkereina

    Last chance to lose your keys.
    Joined
    Feb 11, 2009
    One thing I would consider is the weather. I've not been in the Fall so I can't speak to how October vs late November might vary, but we were surprised to encounter 60s and 70s on our late May trip. Cooler than I was anticipating.
     

    clb79

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Jul 29, 2009
    I appreciate all of the comments/opinions and everyone has valid points/reasons for their opinions. That helped a ton with our list of pros and cons. We have decided that we are going to move the trip to Thanksgiving Week in November.

    These were the main reasons why (maybe it will help others with similar decisions to make):

    Hotel Price: We were able to add a 5th night to our stay and our total price is 150.00 less than it was for 4 nights in Oct (we did change hotels to get those savings and won’t be quite as close).

    Tickets: Looking at 5 day (instead of 4 day) now. Still waiting on some things to decide exactly which type and if we will to MaxPass in advance or make that a day to day decision.

    Future Trips: We might look at upgrading our tickets to APs now that we are going in November which would allow us to make a Halloween Trip during Fall Break next year before our passes expire.

    Halloween Time vs Holiday Season offerings didn’t really factor in the decision making as much as we thought it would initially...

    Longer Park Hours (without OBB closures to factor in) along with the extra day in the parks will hopefully compensate for any increase in crowds. As mentioned before we also expect it to be crowded anytime that we are able to go and take it for what it is...
     
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    theluckyrabbit

    Moderator
    Moderator
    Joined
    Jul 23, 2012
    I appreciate all of the comments/opinions and everyone has valid points/reasons for their opinions. That helped a ton with our list of pros and cons. We have decided that we are going to move the trip to Thanksgiving Week in November.

    These were the main reasons why (maybe it will help others with similar decisions to make):

    Hotel Price: We were able to add a 5th night to our stay and our total price is 150.00 less than it was for 4 nights in Oct (we did change hotels to get those savings and won’t be quite as close).

    Tickets: Looking at 5 day (instead of 4 day) now. Still waiting on some things to decide exactly which type and if we will to MaxPass in advance or make that a day to day decision.

    Future Trips: We might look at upgrading our tickets to APs now that we are going in November which would allow us to make a Halloween Trip during Fall Break next year before our passes expire.

    Halloween Time vs Holiday Season offerings didn’t really factor in the decision making as much as we thought it would initially...

    Longer Park Hours (without OBB closures to factor in) along with the extra day in the parks will hopefully compensate for any increase in crowds. As mentioned before we also expect it to be crowded anytime that we are able to go and take it for what it is...
    Great reasoning -- more days, longer hours, less money, possible APs -- win win win! :)
     

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