Have you ever been to Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party at Disney World? If not, trust me, the key to having a great time really lies in the details. Two families can have two totally different experiences based on when they go, what they prepare in advance, and what they prioritize while at the party.
Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party is a special Christmas-themed party that takes place inside Magic Kingdom on select nights from early November all the way till right before Christmas. It’s a ticketed event that runs from 7:00 p.m. to midnight. Prices range from about $99 to $139 per person, depending on the age of the guest and the night you’re going. You don’t need a separate park pass in addition to your ticket, unless you want to spend all day inside the park leading up to the party (which I don’t necessarily advise). I’ve compiled our top 10 tips for making the most of Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party after checking it out in person. Grab your Santa “ears” and take notes!
Or if you’d rather watch these tips in video form, check out this YouTube video:
1. Choose the right night
These holiday events are getting more and more crowded as the years pass. Earlier in the season and non-holiday weekdays will be less crowded. There are only 23 dates for Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party in 2019 versus the 36 dates designated for Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party in 2019, so availability is definitely limited. It’s important to note that tickets do sell out on some nights, so don’t wait to buy them. We went on November 12th, which was a Tuesday and only the third party in the series, so it wasn’t very crowded at all. This made it really comfortable to get around the park.
2. Bring your own light-up necklaces
There are official Disney light-up necklaces, complete with Mickey-shaped bulbs, that you can buy in the parks, but if you like to save a couple bucks like we do, buy some Christmas light necklaces on Amazon before you go. We got four of these for just $20!
3. Wear something festive
Dressing up for the occasion can really enhance your enjoyment of the party, so get in the Christmas spirit and wear something festive! Because we’re so extra, we actually had two different Christmas outfits for the event. Our first outfits went with a plaid theme. We wore plaid ears from the Etsy store BriarsPatches, with our light-up Christmas lights from Amazon. Our second outfits were all about Santa and his elves. The girls had elf pajamas and Serge and I wore Santa t-shirts. Our light-up holly ears were from the Etsy store Best Day Evear. Check the forecast in Orlando beforehand, since the weather can be anywhere from the 50’s to the 80’s depending on when you go (and sweating hot or freezing cold children can put a damper on the fun).
4. Get there early
The event starts at 7:00 p.m., but if you have a ticket for Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party, you can actually enter Magic Kingdom as early as 4:00 p.m.! Take advantage of those extra three hours. They’re a great time to get some photos with the Christmas decorations while there’s still daylight, and to ride some rides before the actual party starts. As you may know, Jungle Cruise gets a special overlay during the holiday season. It transforms into Jingle Cruise, and you’ll see Christmas decorations among the animatronics and also the skippers tell lots of corny Christmas jokes. This ride is better during the day than at night so the 4:00 to 7:00 window is a good time to ride it.
5. Go on the rides with a holiday twist
You can experience the Jingle Cruise Christmas overlay at any time during the holiday season, but there are some rides that get a special holiday twist ONLY during the party itself (once the clock strokes 7:00 p.m.). It’s worth prioritizing these during the party. They are: Space Mountain, Monsters Inc. Laugh Floor, Mad Tea Party, and Tomorrowland Speedway.
Want to watch a vlog from our experience? Check out this YouTube video:
6. Limit time at the holiday treat stations
Throughout Magic Kingdom you’ll find holiday treat stations set up where you can get complimentary cookies and beverages. You can recognize them because they’ll have a big blow-up candy cane outside. Some of the lines can get really long during the party, and while I didn’t try every single cookie, the ones I tried were mediocre to bad. So personally I don’t really think it’s worth spending valuable time during the party lining up for the treats. (If you’re into treats, the Holiday Cookies Stroll at Epcot might be more your style!)
7. Buy holiday merchandise
If you enjoy shopping for Disney souvenirs, be sure to look out for certain exclusive items that are only sold during Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party. These include spirit jerseys, T-shirts, magic bands, mugs and Christmas tree ornaments. But it’s not just party-exclusive merch that’s great to pick up. For us, since this would be our only day in Magic Kingdom during the holiday season, we spent the time shopping for holiday items that are actually available outside of the party itself. We bought a Christmas tree popcorn bucket that was so adorable and even lights up! It took us forever to find the red Jingle Sipper, but we finally found one at Sleepy Hollow in Liberty Square. And of course there’s tons of other cute holiday items in the parks, so have a look around and see what you can buy to enhance your outfits!
8. Meet some characters
If you love characters, then you’ll really enjoy the meet and greets during Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party, because you’ll get to see many of them in their holiday outfits! If you’re a fan of Nightmare Before Christmas, you’ll also get to meet Sally and Jack, with Jack dressed up as Sandy Claws. If you want to avoid long lines, try going during the parades, or right after. You can also try waiting till the last hour of the party. We stopped in to see Mickey at the Town Square Theater as we were walking towards the exit after the last parade, and there was no line at all!
9. Watch the parade on Main Street
One amazing thing that you’ll only experience during Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party is seeing it snow on Main Street! Main Street is already so pretty and quaint, but seeing snow fall there is just so special. For that reason, I recommend that you grab a spot on Main Street to watch Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmastime Parade. We didn’t do that, since we watched the parade from the hub in front of the castle, but we did get to experience the snow on Main Street as we were walking towards the exit at the end of the party.
10. Prioritize the parade, castle stage show and fireworks
The party is only a few hours long, and the time goes by really quickly. Understand that there’s no way you’ll be able to do everything. Your best bet is to go into the party with a bit of a plan. I’d recommend prioritizing the parade, the stage show and the fireworks, because these three attractions are completely unique to the party, and not something you can see outside of the event. Then, build the rest of your schedule around those three things.
Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmastime Parade happens twice a night, once at 8:30 p.m. and once at 11:00 p.m. My favorite part of the parade was seeing Vanellope driving around in her race car! It was so cute and different from the other floats. Another great feature is that you see all the princesses with their princes!
Mickey’s Most Merriest Celebration is the stage show that happens right in front of the castle. You can catch this four times during the party: at 7:40 p.m., 9:25 p.m., 10:30 p.m. and 11:55 p.m. This is a really fun show where Mickey, Minnie and tons of other characters sing and dance. For me, the highlight was definitely seeing Clarabelle go into full diva mode as she sings Mariah Carey’s “All I Want for Christmas Is You.” This was SO much fun!
Minnie’s Wonderful Christmastime Fireworks Show only happens one time during the party, at 10:00 p.m. If I were to compare it to the fireworks show at Mickey’s Very Scary Halloween Party, which we also went to this year, I’d say that at Halloween there’s more of an emphasis on the projections on the castle. During the Christmas fireworks show, there are still castle projections, but the emphasis is really on the fireworks themselves, and they’re pretty spectacular.
So there you have my top 10 tips making the most of Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party! There are so many unique things to be aware of during this event that it pays to create a little bit of a plan before you go. Simply knowing what’s worth waiting for and what you can skip makes a huge difference. Dress the part, buy your tickets in advance, and try to book a date that will likely be less crowded for the best possible experience. Now excuse me while I blast Mariah Carey and do my best Clarabelle impression!
What advice do you have for making the most of Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party?