Disney After Hours is a private event offered on select dates at Magic Kingdom . It’s not cheap, but it might be worth it for many people.
After an almost 3 year hiatus, this fan favorite event will be returning in 2023!
Here’s info on what it is, how much it costs, who should plan to attend, and a suggested itinerary if you decide to go.
What is Disney After Hours?
Disney After Hours is a separately-ticketed event (meaning it’s a ticket that is purchased separate from regular park tickets) that allows people to enter Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom at 7 p.m. and stay until midnight or 1 a.m. (ending time varies by date).
Like other separately-ticketed events, you’ll be able to enter the theme park before the official party start time and there will be a Cast Member at the front of the park with a sign directing guests where to go.
You’ll scan your MagicBand or ticket and receive your special “After Hours” wristband at that time.
Already planning to be in Magic Kingdom? No worries. You don’t have to go all the way back to the front of the park to check-in.
You’re able to pick up your After Hours wristband at stations in the park, like this one in Tomorrowland.
(These Cast Members were the BEST! So much fun!)
There are a limited number of tickets sold so you’ll find that the wait times are small (think 5-10 minutes) or, better yet: non-existent!
Seriously, the park is almost empty and kind of eerily quiet.
And you can walk on rides, meet characters, and enjoy treats and bottled beverages (they’re included with the ticket!) as you walk through the park.
Though the ticket allows you to enter at 7:00 p.m., the event doesn’t begin until 10:00 p.m. which means you can do things between 7 and the event starting time that aren’t available during the party.
Most importantly, that includes fireworks and attractions that won’t be open during the event.
What about food?
During the event you’ll find that most of the regular Table Service and Quick Service locations aren’t open (although there will be a couple spots like Main Street Bakery that are) but that may not be necessary since the event includes unlimited ice cream treats, popcorn, and bottled beverages.
You’ll typically find these at the carts and kiosks spread throughout the park so if the line looks long at one it might be worth it to hold off and try the next one you come across.
Disney After Hours dates and times
The Disney After Hours event at Magic Kingdom starts at 10:00 p.m. and ends at 1:00 a.m. in 2023. Tickets for these dates go on sale to all guest Friday, October 7, 2023.
Important: Guests of select hotels at Walt Disney World Resort can purchase tickets to Disney After Hours at Magic Kingdom as early as October 4. This advance purchase window is also available to guests of Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Hotels and Shades of Green.
2023 Disney After Hours dates
- Monday, January 9, 2023
- Monday, January 16, 2023
- Monday, January 23, 2023
- Thursday, February 16, 2023
- Monday, February 20, 2023
- Monday, February 27, 2023
- Thursday, March 2, 2023
- Monday, March 6, 2023
- Monday, March 13, 2023
- Thursday, March 16, 2023
- Monday, March 20, 2023
- Monday, March 27, 2023
Historical Event Dates
Oftentimes you’ll find that Disney only releases event dates a few months out, which can make it difficult if you’re trying to plan your vacation.
To help we have included some historical dates below.
Keep in mind that these dates are not guarantees of what will happen in the future; rather, use them as guides as to what you might expect to see.
These are the dates the event was offered in 2019:
- Monday, January 7, 2019³
- Thursday, January 17, 2019³
- Thursday, January 24, 2019³
- Monday, January 28, 2019³
- Thursday, February 7, 2019³
- Thursday, February 14, 2019²
- Thursday, February 21, 2019²
- Thursday, February 28, 2019³
- Thursday, March 7, 2019²
- Thursday, March 21, 2019¹
- Thursday, March 28, 2019¹
- Thursday, April 4, 2019¹
- Thursday, April 11, 2019¹
- Thursday, May 2, 2019¹
- Thursday, May 9, 2019¹
- Thursday, May 16, 2019¹
- Thursday, May 23, 2019¹
- Thursday, May 30, 2019¹
- Thursday, June 6, 2019 (Disney Villains After Hours)
- Thursday, June 13, 2019 (Disney Villains After Hours)
- Thursday, June 20, 2019 (Disney Villains After Hours)
- Thursday, June 27, 2019 (Disney Villains After Hours)
- Monday, July 1, 2019 (Disney Villains After Hours)
- Thursday, July 11, 2019 (Disney Villains After Hours)
- Thursday, July 18, 2019 (Disney Villains After Hours)
- Thursday, July 25, 2019 (Disney Villains After Hours)
- Thursday, August 1, 2019 (Disney Villains After Hours)
- Thursday, August 8, 2019 (Disney Villains After Hours)
- Thursday August 22, 2019¹
- Thursday, August 29, 2019¹
- Thursday, September 5, 2019¹
- Thursday, September 12, 2019¹
- Thursday, September 19, 2019¹
- Thursday, September 26, 2019¹
- Monday, November 18, 2019¹
- Monday, December 9, 2019¹
- Monday, January 6, 2020³
- Monday, January 13, 2020³
- Friday, January 17, 2020²
- Monday, January 20, 2020²
- Thursday, January 23, 2020³
- Monday, January 27, 2020³
- Friday, January 31, 2020³
- Monday, February 3, 2020²
- Friday, February 7, 2020 (Disney Villains After Hours)
- Monday, February 10, 2020²
- Friday, February 14, 2020 (Disney Villains After Hours)
- Monday, February 17, 2020²
- Friday, February 21, 2020 (Disney Villains After Hours)
- Monday, February 24, 2020²
- Friday, February 28, 2020 (Disney Villains After Hours)
- Monday, March 2, 2020³
- Friday, March 6, 2020 (Disney Villains After Hours)
- Monday, March 9, 2020¹
- Wednesday, March 11, 2020 (Disney Villains After Hours)
¹event takes place from 10 p.m. to 1 a.m.
²event takes place 9 p.m. to midnight
³event takes place 8:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m.
Disney Villains After Hours (more info on what that means below) took place 10 p.m. to 1 a.m.
Attractions & Character Meets
Definitely the main focus of Disney After Hours is the ability to ride lots of attractions and see some select characters with little to no waits. At this time, there is no confirmation of what will be open in 2023, but below is what we saw in 2018.
As you can tell by the list below, the majority of the park will be open making it easy to see and ride all of your favorites.
Here’s what you can typically find available:
Main Street U.S.A.
- Meet Mickey Mouse and Tinker Bell at Town Square Theater
- The Magic Carpets of Aladdin
- Jungle Cruise
- Pirates of the Caribbean
- Swiss Family Treehouse
- Enchanted Tiki Room
- Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
- Splash Mountain
- Country Bear Jamboree
- Haunted Mansion
- The Barnstormer
- “it’s a small world”
- Mad Tea Party
- The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh
- Meet Ariel in her grotto
- Mickey’s PhilharMagic
- Peter Pan’s Flight
- Meet Disney Princesses in Princess Fairytale Hall
- Seven Dwarfs Mine Train
- Under the Sea ~ Journey of the Little Mermaid
- Astro Orbiter
- Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin
- Space Mountain
- Tomorrowland Speedway
- Tomorrowland Transit Authority PeopleMover
And here’s what’s NOT available:
- Enchantment (nighttime fireworks show)
- Most character meets not listed above
- Enchanted Tales with Belle
- The Hall of Presidents
- Monsters, Inc. Laugh Floor
- Carousel of Progress
Disney After Hours cost
Current ticket prices are:
- $135-$159 plus tax per adult or child (depending on date)
There are some discounts available, though.
Annual Passholders and Disney Vacation Club (DVC) members can purchase tickets for $105-$129 so that is a nice bit of savings if you are a member of either of those groups.
How to get tickets
When it comes time to purchase tickets you have a couple of options:
You can purchase them from your travel professional (we recommend Small World Vacations).
Or, if you’d rather, tickets can be purchased online or by calling 407-827-7185.
Who should attend?
Although the price sounds high for just 4-6 hours in the park, we suggest it does make sense if you think of it in terms of number of attractions rather than number of hours.
You can get more done at the event than you could in a whole day at Magic Kingdom.
For that reason, I’d highly suggest it for people who have short trips and want to fit in as much as possible because it’s a really great way to do that.
Planning your time
The the following plan is from 2018. We’ll be sure to update if or when we attend in 2023.
Here’s how we recommend you plan spend your time at this event.
- Arrive at Magic Kingdom just before 7:00 so you can enter the park as soon as you can.
- Visit any attractions that won’t be open during the event.
- See the fireworks.
- Spend most of your time visiting attractions and meeting characters, picking up snacks at kiosks throughout Magic Kingdom as you go.
- Grab a bottle or two of beverages to take back to your hotel.
- Have a PhotoPass photographer snap your pic on Main Street on the way out. Gotta take advantage of having almost nobody in the park to clutter up your photo!
Disney Villains After Hours
In the Summer of 2019, Disney began offering a new twist to the already popular After Hours events: Disney Villains After Hours. This is no longer being offered at this time, but historical information is available below.
You get all the regular stuff included (like access to attractions, free bottled beverages and ice cream treats, etc.) but in addition to all of that you’ll also have a few fun extras:
- Disney Villains stage show – This new show called “Villains Unite the Night” will star Hades and Meg from “Hercules” with some special appearances by Jafar, The Queen, Dr. Facilier and Maleficent
- Maleficent the Dragon – Maleficent the Dragon (which is the super popular float from the Festival of Fantasy parade) will be found creeping through the park and breathing her scary fire
- “Villanous Enhancements” to attractions: Both Pirates of the Caribbean and Space Mountain will get some fun villain-themed additions for these special nights
- Special food & beverage offerings -In addition to the free goodies, guests will find an assortment of specially-themed items available for purchase all inspired by some of your favorite villains like The Queen, Cruella de Vil, Maleficent, Hades, Dr. Facilier, and even Emperor Zurg
- Villain-themed merchandise – Event specific merchandise will be available for purchase
NOTE: One thing will NOT be available, though: special villain character meets.
And, for added fun – much like with Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party, for this special event guests are encouraged to “feel free to show off [their] sinister side by dressing in attire inspired by [their] favorite baddie.”
Prices for this enhanced version of Disney After Hours is slightly more expensive:
- $145 (plus tax) for tickets purchased in advance.
- $155 (plus tax) for tickets purchased on the night of the event.
Discounts are available, though. Guests that have Annual Passes or are members of Disney’s Vacation Club can save $30/ticket (making the total with discount $109 plus tax).
Tickets for this new offering are now on sale.
Read more about Disney Villains After Hours.
Early Morning Magic vs. Disney After Hours
Note: Early Morning Magic is no longer being offered at this time, but here’s a historical comparison chart to help you see the differences between both events.
Video: Why Disney After Hours is my favorite event
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