Cinderella Castle at Magic Kingdom in Walt Disney World

All Day Park Hopper Access Returns, Dining Plans, & Best Times to Visit 2024 – Walt Disney World

Beginning January 9, 2024, Walt Disney World will restore all day park hopper access for guests with tickets or annual passes with park hopper benefits. This change ends the previous 2PM park hopping rule that has been in place since 2021. With all day park hopper access, guests can visit multiple parks per day whenever they want during regular park hours, subject to capacity limitations. This gives guests more flexibility to move between the parks to experience different attractions, shows, restaurants etc. Some key benefits of all day park hopping include:

  • Hopping to a new park when standby wait times get too long in your current park
  • Easily seeing nighttime shows at different parks by hopping in the evening
  • Grabbing a late night snack or ride at a different park before closing

Park hopper access has always been a popular add-on option for Walt Disney World tickets. With its return to full all day access, it provides guests even more freedom and flexibility when visiting the parks.

Tables with a view

Dining Plan Options Return in 2024

After being unavailable during the pandemic, Walt Disney World dining plans will return on January 9, 2024 as an add-on with qualifying hotel packages. Two plans will be offered initially:

Quick-Service Dining Plan

  • Includes 2 quick service meals and 1 snack per night
  • 2024 price: $29.69 per adult, $9.99 per child ages 3-9

Standard Disney Dining Plan

  • Includes 1 quick service meal, 1 table service meal, and 1 snack per night
  • 2024 price: $94.28 per adult, $26.69 per child ages 3-9

The dining plans offer a level of convenience, allowing guests to budget their food costs upfront. They also offer potential savings compared to paying out of pocket, especially for table service meals. With over 200 dining locations participating across the parks and resorts, there’s ample choice and flexibility. Some key things to consider when deciding whether to add a dining plan:

  • How many table service vs. quick service meals you plan to have
  • If you would utilize all the included meals and snacks
  • If the upfront cost fits within your vacation budget

For guests planning several table service meals, the standard dining plan can offer excellent value. The dining plans simplify payments since food costs are covered, allowing guests to focus purely on the experience rather than budgeting during their vacation.

Disneyland Tickets with blue background and "magic your way" written on yellow background

Best Times to Visit in 2024

When planning a 2024 Walt Disney World vacation, visiting during lower crowd periods can improve the experience. Avoiding the peak holiday weeks around New Years, Spring Break, Easter, July 4th, Thanksgiving and Christmas is recommended. Here are some of the best times to visit in 2024:

  • January 16-31 – Lower crowds and temperatures after New Years
  • Early February – Before Presidents’ Day weekend
  • May – Lower crowds once spring breaks end
  • Early December – Prior to Christmas crowds
  • Weekdays – Any month, crowds are lower Monday to Thursday

Weekdays in September after Labor Day are an especially good option. The summer crowds have passed, temperatures are still warm, and there are lower mid-week crowds before most schools are back in session. Using tools like Genie+ and Lightning Lane can further help manage crowds and wait times, even during busier periods. Avoiding peak holidays and visiting during “shoulder seasons” remains the best way to experience lower crowds for a better overall vacation. Check out our Crowd Calendar for even more help!

Genie coming out of lamp material

Conclusion

With all day park hopping, dining plans, and picking favorable dates, 2024 is shaping up to be an excellent year to visit Walt Disney World. Guests will have more flexibility than ever before to fully experience everything across the parks and resorts. By planning ahead and understanding all the options, visitors can craft the Disney vacation of their dreams next year.