Are you ready to enjoy one of the best Walt Disney World parties of the year? Even better, are you looking for ways to maximize your party fun? From tips and tricks to shows and treats, here are 15 must-dos at Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party at Disney World.
Here’s a fun fact about me: I start thinking about Halloween in summer.
Having written that, Walt Disney World has the same exuberance for my favorite holiday. So much, in fact, that Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party (MNSSHP) begins in August each year.
This year, we hit the third party of the season and I love the fact that I can stretch my Halloween fun over three months. Here are my must-dos at Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party to help you make the most of your visit.
Arrive at 4PM if Possible
Yes, MNSSHP tickets officially give 7pm as the start of the party. But, your ticket can actually get you into Magic Kingdom starting at 4pm on party night. Those three extra hours can be quite valuable, too, if you make the most of them.
For me and my family, we like to people watch (it’s fun to get costume ideas!), ride a few attractions, and do a little window shopping/ make Halloween purchases.
The shops on Main Street U.S.A. actually begin selling official Halloween party merchandise at this time, so you can browse around (you’ll need to show proof of your party ticket or party bracelet to buy).
Do Your Research BEFORE You Go
As soon as each year’s official MNSSHP map gets released, I’m all about it. I love hopping online and learning exactly what is where well ahead of my party date.
I’ll also make a list of things that we want to see, do, and eat so it’s not so overwhelming.
Must-Dos at Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party: Queue Up Early for the Hot Meet and Greets
Each year, there are always two or three Disney character meet and greets that are the hotness. This year, they’re Moana, Jack and Sally Skellington, and The Seven Dwarfs.
So, if you or the kids have a character(s) that you just have to meet, queue up before the party begins. Personally, I’d much rather wait in line ahead of time so you can get it done to spend more party time on other things.
Find a Place to Watch the Parade and Shows Early
If it’s your first MNSSHP, you’ll definitely want to watch the shows and parade around the castle or on Main Street U.S.A. And, honestly, that’s where most of the other party goers will be. These two locations are the most magical and offer the best views of both, so really make sure to take them in on that route at least once.
So here’s my advise: scout out a location where you’ll have an unobstructed view ahead of time. What we like to do is find a location, commit to it and then one of us will run for snacks, drinks, etc.
Of course, if getting a little extra dose of magic isn’t up your alley, watching the parade in Frontierland or the fireworks in New Fantasyland is just as fun- and way less crowded.
Must-dos at Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party: Take Advantage of Discounted Tickets
Not gonna lie, attending a MNSSHP can get expensive, especially when you have multiple party goers. There are a some ways to save money, though.
- The earlier in the season you attend, the less expensive tickets tend to be
- Mid-week tickets cost less than weekend tickets
- Children under three get in free
- If you’re an Annual Pass Holder you’ll get discounted tickets earlier in the season
- You can purchase your tickets from a reputable third party seller
Personally, I love Undercover Tourist for discounted tickets. Save up to $10 on Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party Ticket!
Keep this in mind, too: the closer you get to Halloween the more likely a MNSSHP will sell out. Do yourself a favor and buy your tickets far in advance.
Obey All Costume Guidelines
This one is a no brainer, but make sure to stick to the MNSSHP costume guidelines. For all the details, here’s the link for the official party costume rules for WDW.
So, just use your head when planning your costume. Don’t bring in any weapons, anything that looks like a weapons, or anything that might be conceived as a weapon. Also, no full face masks are allowed, but you may use minimal face make-up to achieve your look.
WDW doesn’t really dig anything scary as well, hence the name “Not-So-Scary”, so please keep that in mind, too.
On a high note however, Disney World Halloween parties are the one chance adults get to dress up in costume. So, go all out, or go minimal. It’s totally your choice! Either way, you’ll have fun.
Must-dos at Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party at Disney World: Eat Before the Party Begins
So, you’ve got two options for this one: eat before you go or arrive at the 4PM sweet spot and grab a bite before the party actually begins. If you have your heart set on table service dining, make sure to lock your reservation early, too. They sell out fast.
Advanced dining reservations can be made 180 days in advance, but you will have to have a valid party ticket to make a reservation after 6PM. And while we’re talking reservations, you’ll need to lock down FastPass+ selections before 6PM. After that, none will be available and it’s stand-by queue only. That’s another reason you need to lock down your party ticket early.
Trick or Treat at the End of the Night
MNSSHP is known for it’s multiple tick-or-treat trails and massive amounts of candy. While you may want to hop straight into trick-or-treat lines as soon as the party starts, my advice is to wait until you are about to leave.
The first benefit is that you won’t be carrying around tons of Halloween candy all night. And the second (and my favorite) reason is Disney cast members tend to be much more liberal with the amount of candy you receive.
When you check in at the party, you’ll each receive one small trick-or-treat bag to use. You can fill that up and grab as many more as you like. If you’re going for all the candy you may want to bring a larger bag from home, or purchase one when you arrive.
Must-dos at Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party: Wear a Light Costume
This rings true especially for August and September parties. While it may seem like a great idea to wear long, heavy costumes, please keep in mind that central Florida is HOT during that time of year.
Of course, use your best judgement. October is right about when the temperature starts to cool off. So, more elaborate costumes may work well. Just use your best judgment.
Must-dos at Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party at Disney World: Wear Comfortable Shoes
I cannot stress this one enough. My family walk miles everyday in the park, and even the most comfortable of shoes take their toll. So, instead of high heels or uncomfy shoes, think of costumes where you can wear easy-on-the-feet footwear or tennis shoes.
Your feet, legs, and back will thank you. Of course, if you do get blisters, feel free to visit the first-aid center located in between Crystal Palace and Casey’s Corner.
Make Your Purchases Early/At the End
My kid loves collecting trading pins. So when arrive at 4PM, we like to head straight for the pin selection at The Emporium. Or just the opposite, we’ll wait for the end of the party and make our selections then.
If we’re staying on property at a WDW resort, to avoid having to carry them around all night, we will have them delivered to our resort free of charge.
If you’re not staying on property and don’t want to carry your purchases around, ask to have them sent to the front of the park to be picked up when you leave. There is a several hour waiting window, but head to Chamber of Commerce to pick them up when you do.
Must-dos at Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party at Disney World: Stay Hydrated
No matter what time of year it is, make it a point to stay hydrated. We like to do just that, and take advantage of a great freebie: free cups of ice water anywhere fountain drinks are sold.
If you don’t like the taste of Florida water, you are allowed to bring in bottled water, or a water bottle with a filter.
I love taking advantage of WDW freebies. Here’s a list of the best secret free things at Disney World.
Must-dos at Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party: Hop on Rides During Parades and Shows
A quick lesson in MNSSHP parades and shows: there are two parades each night, several castle shows, but only one fireworks spectacular. If you really are attiment on not waiting in a stand-by attraction queue, take advantage of the low lines while parades and shows are going on.
Disney caps their attendance, so you’ll find very manageable line during parties.
Take Advantage of PhotoPass Spots for Great Photos
Each year, Walt Disney World gets more and more advanced with their PhotoPass magic shots. You’ll find photo, as well as video enhancements in your pictures, and I think they get better each year.
If you purchase memory maker for you trip, those photos will be included, as well. If not, consider purchasing a one day memory maker package.
Not into either? No worries. You can still take advantage of PhotoPass photographers and backdrops. While you won’t have the magic shots, you can ask them nicely to take picture with your camera or cellphone. They always happily oblige.
Get Plenty of Rest on Party Day
MNSSHP’s run officially from 7PM until midnight, but if you hit it at 4PM that’s eight hours of excitement. If you can squeeze in a nap, or sleep in on party day, you’ll have more energy to make it straight through until midnight.
Must-dos at Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party: And the 1 Thing NOT to Do?
Here’s my “don’t do” advice: don’t worry if you can’t pack it all in in one night. Each MNSSHP has so much to offer, there’s no way you can do it all. So, make the most of your visit with these must-dos and have a ball!
Want more MNSSHP no-no’s? Here are 11 things not to do at a Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party.
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