Walt Disney World is Making BIG Changes This Holiday Season


It’s safe to say that 2017 has been an uneven year for Walt Disney World. After some promising signs this past spring, attendance began trending back downwards towards the middle of the year, continuing into the fall (with the exception of the Epcot International Food and Wine Festival). And while we can’t predict exactly where attendance will go from here, Disney has taken some steps recently that seem to indicate that they are worried about potentially low guest levels towards the end of the year, and are taking some big steps to try and entice guests to make a last-minute trip during the upcoming holiday season.

1. More special deals are announced for the holiday season

Earlier this month we took a look at some of the deep discounts Disney is offering both this fall and in the new year, and it looks like guests who know where to look can get some pretty amazing deals on rooms, tickets and more as the holiday season approaches.

However, it looks like Disney isn’t done rolling out the holiday travel incentives just yet, as a brand new deal has been unveiled that is very interesting, and unlike anything else Disney has offered in recent years. This limited time offer, known as the Ultimate Disney Christmas, is a fixed arrival/departure package that covers December 21, 2017, through December 26, 2017, and includes all of the following:

  • Thursday, December 21: Ticket to Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party at the Magic Kingdom
  • Friday, December 22: Special nighttime access to Pandora – The World of Avatar at Animal Kingdom
  • Saturday, December 23: Unique holiday character experience at Hollywood Studios Sunday,
  • December 24: Exclusive Christmas Eve Dinner Party at Epcot
  •  Monday, December 25: Special Christmas Day gift delivered to guests’ room

Frozen Christmas

Image: Disney

And while this sounds like it might be an upcharge experience, this package actually starts at $139 per person, per night, for a family of four in a standard room at Disney’s Coronado Springs, which makes it one of the least expensive “packages” out there, especially for small families, especially when you consider that a 4-day Park Hopper ticket and a separate ticket to Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party are also included in this price.

2. Additional holiday entertainment comes to Epcot, Disney’s Hollywood Studios, and Disney Springs

Image: Disney

Walt Disney World definitely goes all out every year for the holiday season, but it looks like the resort is really pulling out all the stops in 2017, offering a number of upgraded and expanded holiday offerings, including the following:

New show at Disney’s Hollywood Studios: this park will be introducing another projection show this holiday season in addition to the Jingle Bell, Jingle BAM! show, which will be returning in the Center Stage area of the park. This additional show will take place on Sunset Boulevard and will transform the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror into a festive icon that will feature Toy Story characters, Minnie and Minnie in a Norman Rockwell-inspired vignette, The Muppets as well as everyone’s favorite snowman Olaf! The show will run each evening from November 9th until December 31st.

Expanded Disney Springs Christmas Tree Trail: One of the big hits from the 2016 holiday season was the 15-tree tree trail in the former bus loop which housed custom trees themed to specific Disney films and/or characters. This year, Disney is not only just Christmas Tree Trail, but is also expanding it to twenty-five trees, including ten new trees inspired by Disney classics such as Sleeping Beauty, Peter Pan, Snow White and Dumbo.

The Epcot International Festival of the Holidays debuts at Epcot This year’s holiday festival at Epcot will include many components of the former Holidays Around the World, including the fan-favorite Candlelight Processional, but Disney is beefing up their offerings at this park in 2017 with new food kiosks, additional entertainment options (including a musical group that that interweaves the music of Hanukkah with jazz, rock and hip-hop influences), and even a scavenger hunt featuring Chip and Dale

It is of course too early to say whether Disney’s addition of several special seasonal offerings in the next few weeks as well as special rates and experiences for guests who book a last-minute vacation will be enough to prop up the resort for what could be a challenging year ahead. However, it looks like the resort is doing everything they can to get guests to visit before the end of the year. Do you think it will be effective?


  • Article courtesy of Them Park Tourist and 


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Don Korta
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