Massive Florida Airport Prepares for Record-Breaking Crowds, Disney World on Alert

in Travel, Walt Disney World

A crowded Orlando International Airport with Mickey Mouse with his hands open wearing a Christmas outfit.

Credit: Edited by Inside The Magic

Orlando International Airport (MCO) is preparing for record-breaking crowds as the final stages of the Holiday season are about to commence.

A sunny, beautiful summer day outside of Orlando International Airport.
Credit: Orlando International Airport – MCO

Orlando International Airport Gets Ready for Insane Holiday Crowds – Disney World Put on High Alert

Christmas is only days away, and Florida is a hot spot for tourists this time of year. Major theme parks like Walt Disney World Resort and Universal Orlando Resort are on high alert as the official Holiday crowds have arrived, bringing long wait times and much more to the Orlando theme parks.

According to an official report from the Greater Orlando Aviation Authority (GOAA), 3.9 million guests are expected to travel through Orlando International Airport from now through January 7, 2024. This is an increase of 13.5% from last year. Click Orlando reported on this news just yesterday, and Inside The Magic reached out to MCO to attempt to receive comments on this large number of people passing through the Florida airport. The summer also saw a high increase in folks traveling through MCO.

The article from Click Orlando reported that the GOAA will reach a new record-breaking number in 2023 compared to 2022, all thanks to the added parking spaces built not too long ago. MCO opened up two new parking lots, adding over 500 places for folks to park their vehicles before heading to their destination.

Large crowds inside of a terminal at Orlando International Airport.
Credit: Orlando International Airport

Approximately 1.8 million individuals are anticipated to traverse the airport in the period leading up to New Year’s. The peak day, projected to be December 30, is expected to witness 187,069 passengers, adding to the bustling activity.

Airport authorities strongly advise travelers to adhere to the 3-2-1 guidelines: arrive at the ticket counter three hours in advance, clear security two hours before departure, and reach the boarding gate one hour before boarding. Additionally, they encourage passengers to travel with minimal luggage, stay informed about parking availability, and prioritize security measures. It is emphasized that guests should thoroughly inspect their bags for prohibited items before heading to their terminal via TSA.

As mentioned, Disney World is already experiencing the pressure of the crowds within their theme parks. The paid-service Genie+, which gets guests onto their favorite attractions quicker, sold out in record time this week, and the wait times for interests reached more than two hours, with some of the more popular attractions getting even higher wait times.

Disney World third-party tour guides - Disney's governing district - Disney's 50th Anniversary Celebration comes to and end: fans react
Credit: Disney

As the Christmas holiday season approaches, we kindly remind guests embarking on a magical journey to Disney World through Orlando International Airport to plan their travel meticulously. Considering the heightened festive demand and increased foot traffic, it is advisable to factor in ample time for check-in procedures, security checks, and boarding.

To ensure a seamless and enchanting experience, guests are encouraged to follow recommended guidelines, stay informed about potential travel delays, and arrange transportation and accommodation well in advance. By planning accordingly, visitors can maximize their enjoyment of the holiday season at Disney World, creating lasting memories amid the festive enchantment.

Follow Inside The Magic for more end-of-the-year travel news for folks visiting Orlando, Disney World, or Universal.

in Travel, Walt Disney World

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