What is the Best Time to Visit Disneyland in October (2024)

Are you ready for a spooktacular Disneyland adventure this October? With Halloween festivities in full swing and pleasant weather conditions, it’s no wonder October is a popular month to visit the Happiest Place on Earth. But is Disneyland busy in October?

In October, to avoid large crowds at Disneyland, plan to attend during weekdays rather than weekends. Later in October is generally preferable to early in the month, but avoid the weekend prior to Halloween as well as October 30th. Halloween itself tends to be less crowded.

Thankfully, there are typically no school holidays in Los Angeles in October. Plan ahead, arrive early, and consider using the Genie+ service for expedited access to select attractions.

In this blog post, we’ll help you navigate the park with ease by offering tips and tricks for making the most of your Disneyland experience during Halloween time.

Short Summary

  • October at Disneyland Resort is the perfect time to experience enchanting attractions, special events and decorations.
  • Genie+ and Lightning Lane services can help reduce wait times while Magic Key passholders (which replaced the old
    annual passholders program) provide exclusive access.
  • Prepare for your visit with creative costumes, comfortable clothing & accessories, as well as planning ahead on less busy days!

October at Disneyland Resort: What to Expect

October is a fantastic time to plan your Disneyland trip, with Halloween season in full effect and the park adorned with delightful decorations.

The combination of thrilling Halloween-themed attractions and the comfortable Southern California weather make it an ideal month to plan your Disney vacation, whether you choose to visit Disneyland Resort or explore Disney World.

And since there are no official school holidays in October (usually), it’s one of the best months to go.

However, the popularity of the season can also lead to larger crowds, so it’s essential to plan ahead and make the most of your visit.

Halloween Season Highlights

Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure Park go all out during the Halloween season, offering special events and attractions that you won’t want to miss.

One of the most popular events is the Disney Halloween Party, also known as the Oogie Boogie Bash, a separately ticketed event that takes place on select nights in October at Disney California Adventure. The event features exciting entertainment, unique character meet and greets, and the opportunity for guests to wear their Halloween costumes.

Another must-see attraction during October is the Haunted Mansion Holiday overlay, where the classic Haunted Mansion ride is transformed with a Nightmare Before Christmas theme. This unique experience is available from early September through January, so be sure to catch it during your October visit.

Weather Conditions in October

When visiting Disneyland in October, expect to enjoy generally mild and pleasant weather conditions.

With an average high temperature around 76°F and lows around 63°F, it’s the perfect time for a Disney vacation. The comfortable weather allows you to fully immerse yourself in the park’s magical atmosphere without worrying about extreme heat or cold.

Keep in mind that while daytime temperatures can still be warm, the evenings can get cooler, so it’s a good idea to bring layers to accommodate the fluctuating temperatures. Don’t forget to pack sunscreen, as Southern California is known for its sunny days, even in October.

Overall, the good weather conditions in October contribute to a delightful Disneyland experience.

Factors Affecting Disneyland Crowd Levels in October

As with any popular destination, there are certain factors that can impact crowd levels at Disneyland during October. To make the most of your visit, it’s essential to understand these factors and plan accordingly.

In this section, we’ll explore the impact of fall breaks, the Oogie Boogie Bash, and Magic Key passholders on Disneyland’s crowd levels in October.

Fall Break Schedules

One factor that can contribute to increased crowds in October are fall break schedules for schools in neighboring states. As families take advantage of this time off from school, they often plan trips to Disneyland, leading to larger crowds during these periods. To better prepare for your visit, consult the Disneyland crowd calendar to avoid peak times.

To navigate the crowds during fall break, consider utilizing Genie+ and Lightning Lane services, planning your visit on less busy days, and taking advantage of rope-dropping and park hours.

Oogie Boogie Bash Party Nights

The Oogie Boogie Bash is another factor that can contribute to larger crowds during October. This popular Halloween event takes place on select nights throughout the month, drawing in additional guests looking to celebrate the season.

If you’re planning to attend the Oogie Boogie Bash, be prepared for larger crowds, especially in Disney California Adventure Park. To make the most of your Oogie Boogie Bash experience, arrive early and wear comfortable shoes to ensure you can fully enjoy the event.

If you’re feeling extra festive, you can even wear a costume to get into the Halloween spirit, but be sure to follow Disneyland’s costume guidelines for a smooth and enjoyable experience.

Magic Key Passholders

A Disneyland Magic Key is a new annual pass program introduced by Disneyland Resort.

It provides passholders with various benefits and access to the theme parks throughout the year. The Magic Key program replaced the old Annual Passholder program, which was discontinued. While both programs offer admission to Disneyland and Disney California Adventure Park, there are notable differences.

The Magic Key program offers a tiered system with different levels of access, blackout dates, and discounts.

Passholders can make park reservations in advance and enjoy exclusive perks. The program also includes a reservation-based model to manage park capacity. The changes aim to provide more flexibility, manage crowds, and enhance the overall guest experience.

Magic Key passholders, particularly local residents, can also impact crowd levels at Disneyland during October. These passholders often visit the park during the mornings and evenings, taking advantage of their exclusive access during less busy times of the day.

To help plan your visit around Magic Key passholder attendance, consider consulting the Magic Key Blackout Calendar, which shows when these passholders are not able to visit the park.

Do they still have Magic Hours or Magic Mornings?

Currently, those programs, which allowed multi-day ticket holders to arrive prior to the park opening and gain access to a limited number of rides, are on hold.

As of the time of this writing, the only program available is Early Entry at Disneyland. And that is for Disneyland Resort Hotel guests only

Tips for Navigating Disneyland Crowds in October

To make the most of your Disneyland visit in October, it’s essential to have strategies in place for navigating the crowds. In this section, we’ll discuss the benefits of utilizing Genie+ and Lightning Lane services.

Planning your visit on less busy days can also help you avoid crowds. Taking advantage of rope dropping and park hours can also be beneficial.

Utilizing Genie+ and Lightning Lane Services

Genie+ and Lightning Lane services, along with park hopper tickets, are fantastic tools for reducing wait times at popular attractions during busy October days. These services allow you to bypass the standby line on select attractions and access unlimited Disney PhotoPass downloads.

To use Genie+ and Lightning Lane services effectively, plan ahead and purchase your party ticket in advance, arrive early to the park, and familiarize yourself with the Genie+ system before your visit.

Genie+ replaced the old FastPass system.

Planning Your Visit on Less Busy Days

When planning your October Disneyland visit, consider scheduling your trip during less busy days.

The best days to visit Disneyland Resort in October are typically Mondays and Wednesdays, followed by Tuesdays and Thursdays. By visiting during these less busy days, you can enjoy shorter wait times for attractions and a more relaxed atmosphere.

To further enhance your experience during the best time to visit, arrive early in the morning when the park is less crowded. This will allow you to enjoy popular attractions with minimal wait times and ensure you have a magical experience.

Rope Dropping and Park Hours

Rope dropping, or arriving at the park before it officially opens, is a great strategy for experiencing popular attractions with shorter wait times. By being among the first guests in the park, you can take advantage of the lower crowd levels during the early morning hours.

Park hours in October typically see the park opening at 8:00am and closing at 10:00pm. By familiarizing yourself with the park hours, you can plan your visit accordingly, ensuring you have ample time to experience all the attractions and festivities that Disneyland has to offer during your October visit.

Special Disneyland Events and Attractions in October

In addition to the Halloween festivities, there are several special events and attractions unique to October that you won’t want to miss. The Haunted Mansion Holiday overlay and the plethora of Halloween-themed food and merchandise throughout the park are sure to make your visit extra special.

From spooky decorations to special treats, there’s something for everyone to enjoy at theme parks. Whether you’re looking for a frightening adventure or a fun family outing, Disneyland is the perfect place to celebrate the season.

Haunted Mansion Holiday Overlay

The Haunted Mansion Holiday is a must-visit if you’re visiting in October. It features a Nightmare Before Christmas theme, making it a popular attraction. This unique experience sees the classic Haunted Mansion ride transformed with beloved characters from the film and a festive holiday atmosphere.

The overlay begins in early September and runs through January, so make sure to catch it during your October visit to Disneyland.

Halloween-Themed Food and Merchandise

Disneyland offers a variety of Halloween-themed food and merchandise throughout the park during October. You’ll find mouth-watering treats such as pumpkin cheesecake, Mickey bat cookies, and Cookies & Candy Sundaes, perfect for satisfying your sweet tooth.

In addition to the festive food offerings, Disneyland also has a wide selection of Halloween-themed merchandise available. From t-shirts and hats to mugs and pins, there’s something for everyone to commemorate their spooktacular visit to the park during October.

Preparing for Your Disneyland October Visit

As you plan your Disneyland visit in October, it’s important to prepare for the unique experiences that await. Packing appropriate clothing and accessories for the fluctuating temperatures, as well as considering costume tips for the Oogie Boogie Bash, will ensure a worry-free and enjoyable vacation.

Layering is key for cooler evenings, and a light jacket or sweater is recommended. For the Oogie Boogie Bash, costumes are encouraged, and guests are encouraged to dress up as their favorite Disney characters.

Clothing and Accessories

When packing for your October Disneyland visit, be sure to bring layers for the varying temperatures. Shorts or capris, t-shirts, tank tops, light jackets, or sweatshirts are all suitable options for daytime and evening wear. Comfortable shoes are a must, as you’ll be walking around the park for hours on end.

Don’t forget to pack sunscreen, a hat, and sunglasses for those sunny California days. Bringing a small backpack or bag to store your belongings can also provide added convenience during your visit.

Oogie Boogie Bash Costume Tips

If you’re attending the Oogie Boogie Bash, you’ll likely want to wear a costume to fully embrace the Halloween spirit. When planning your costume, be sure to adhere to Disneyland’s costume guidelines and prioritize comfort for a night of fun.

In addition to following the guidelines, consider the weather when planning your costume. Opt for materials that are breathable and comfortable to wear throughout the event. With a little creativity and preparation, you’ll be sure to have a spooktacular time at the Oogie Boogie Bash!

Summary

In conclusion, visiting Disneyland in October promises a magical experience filled with Halloween festivities, unique attractions, and unforgettable memories.

On the plus side, Disneyland is one of the smallest Disney parks.

But that can also mean a large number of people in a smaller space compared to Walt Disney World. But I do love the fact that you can walk from Disneyland to California Adventure given Disney World is so large and spread out that you have to use transportation between parks.

By planning your visit with the tips and information provided in this blog post, you can navigate the park with ease and make the most of your enchanting Disneyland adventure.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Disneyland crowded during October?

October can be an ideal time to visit Disneyland. Although you should expect heavier crowds than normal due to Halloween festivities, it’s still a great time of the year to go and explore all that the park has to offer.

With some planning, you should be able to avoid the busiest times and make the most of your trip.

Is October a good time to visit Disneyland California?

It’s definitely a great time to visit Disneyland California in October! This is when the temperatures are mild and the crowds tend to be lower than during summer, spring break, or major holidays like Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Plus, you can experience all the special decorations, entertainment, rides, and food associated with Halloween!

How long are the lines at Disneyland in October?

Visiting Disneyland in October is a great time to experience the Halloween season with shorter-than-average lines! Lines in October are usually around 30min on average, with some Fridays and Columbus Day week stretching up to 60min.

The weekends tend to be more crowded, so plan for wait times of up to 90+min on Saturdays and Sundays.

How busy is Disney in early October?

Disneyland crowd calendars unfortunately vary on their crowd level predictions.

However, some common threads you see are:

  • Weekends are always busier than weekdays
  • Halloween itself (October 31st) is often less busy
  • The weekend leading up to Halloween (and the end of October in general) is extra busy
  • October 30th is extra busy

Also, you should expect bigger crowds on nights when the Oogie Boogie Bash is scheduled. Disneyland currently states the bash will be held “Select nights September 5 through October 31”. It will be held in Disney California Adventure Park located next door to the original Disneyland.

You may have heard of Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party. But know that Mickey’s Halloween party is only at Walt Disney World in Florida and Disneyland Paris and NOT at Disneyland in Anaheim, CA.

When is the best time to visit Disneyland in October?

If you’re looking to enjoy the attractions at Disneyland in October, visiting on a Monday or Wednesday is your best bet. Planning your trip for either of these days can help you avoid the crowds and make the most of your magical experience.

Make sure to check out all my personal Disney recommendations (click to go to my page) on saving money on hotels, rental cars, airfare, park tickets, and even saving money on costumes and toys!

Jeff Campbell