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Everything You Need to Know About the Phases of Park Closures

Everything You Need to Know About the Phases of Park Closures

The holidays are fast approaching and it is time you start preparing for the busiest time at Walt Disney World and with the busiest season comes phases of park closures due to a specific park, usually the Magic Kingdom, being at capacity.





What does it mean when a park is “At capacity?”

This occurs when a park has reached the allotted number of guests allowed in the park.  Typically, we see park closures, if they occur, at the beginning of the day as guests start to arrive during peak season days.  Generally, the idea is that as they move through the phases, fewer and fewer people are allowed into the parks.  However, if a park closure begins to happen there might be some good news for those trying to get in.  The phases can change throughout the day as crowd levels in the parks change! For instance, Magic Kingdom may be in a closure phase mid-day and then have the closure lifted later in the day as guests leave.





Are there different phases to a park closure?

So, how do we know what phase the parks are in?  Walt Disney World has used different nomenclature for the closure phases over the years. In years past, the closure phases used to be phase 1, 2, 3, and 4, but recently we have noticed Disney started using A and B before jumping to a phase 2 closure.  This is leading us to believe Disney replaced phase 1 with A and B.





Who is allowed in the parks during a park closure?

In total there are technically only 4 phases, however, as mentioned above Phase 1 is now split into two phases.  Let’s take a closer look at who is allowed into the parks.

  • Phase 1A

WDW Resort Guests, WDW Annual Passholders, Guests with Park Hopper re-entering or coming from another park, Guests with Memory Maker, Guests with dining reservations, Magic Kingdom guests with reservations at Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique, Harmony Barber Shop, or The Pirates League.

  • Phase 1B

WDW Resort Guests, WDW Annual Passholders, Guests with Memory Maker, Guests with dining reservations, Magic Kingdom guests with reservations at Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique, Harmony Barber Shop, or The Pirates League.

  • Phase 2

WDW Resort Guests, WDW Annual Passholders, Guests with Park Hopper re-entering or coming from another park, Guests with dining reservations, Magic Kingdom guests with reservations at Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique, Harmony Barber Shop, or The Pirates League.

  • Phase 3

WDW Resort Guests, WDW Annual Passholders, Guests with dining reservations, Magic Kingdom guests with reservations at Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique, Harmony Barber Shop, or The Pirates League.

  • Phase 4
  • NO guests allowed in

**Annual Passholders be sure to check your blackout dates according to your Passholder level. 

When do we typically see a park closure?

There are a few times throughout the year that closures are often seen:

Easter week – usually just Magic Kingdom
July 4 – Magic Kingdom
Christmas through New Year’s – The Magic Kingdom, and occasionally at Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom.

I hope this helps if you are visiting the parks during a busy time!  Follow along with Disney Addicts for more tips and tricks!

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Jessica Jones


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