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  • [Question] Park Capacity?

    How often does Disneyland hit capacity on average each year?
    Is it true that it is not known how many people the park maxes out at? (The specific capacity of the park)
    When the park hits capacity and they do not let guests in, do those people usually still wait in line for the park to start letting people in?
    How long is the average time for reopening the gates, after a closure for capacity reasons?
    We are going to the parks starting the 26th

  • #2
    Re: Park Capacity?

    There is no magic number for park capacity. It's a number that has a range of 5,000 or more, and is dependent on weather, current refurbishments and entertainment schedules, time of year, time of day, day of the week, and demographic mix of the guests that day. Plus just a walk-through gauge of the organic "feel" of the park and the Guests mood at that particular hour on that particular day.

    However, once Disneyland nears about 45,000 inside the park, there's a management team in charge of watching the numbers and factoring in all of the variables listed above. Once you get about 48,000 or more inside the park, that's when the phased closure of the turnstiles begins. Last Christmas the highest in park numbers at any one time were around 50,000 to 51,000, and there were phased closures in effect at the main entrance during those in-park numbers.

    Closing the park at capacity is not an exact science. It's an art form, and it varies day to day with different numbers.

    That's for Disneyland. I have no idea of the number range for DCA's capacity, but I would guess it's around 35,000.

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    • #3
      Re: Park Capacity?

      Originally posted by Westsider View Post
      That's for Disneyland. I have no idea of the number range for DCA's capacity, but I would guess it's around 35,000.
      The numbers I have heard, based on a "all rides running, all walkways open" is in the area of 58K for Disneyland and 27K (pre carsland days) for DCA.
      If you see a cute yellow lab puppy with a yellow cape, WAVE! It might be us! (Or it may be someone else that lurks here!) Thank you for asking before you pet! Next trip, Dec 22-Jan 3rd.

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      • #4
        Re: Park Capacity?

        Originally posted by Westsider View Post
        Once you get about 48,000 or more inside the park, that's when the phased closure of the turnstiles begins.
        By phased closures, do you simply mean they reduce the number of open turnstiles? Say from 12 to 6 or something, basically slowing the number of guests entering per hour. And then further reduce, ultimately closing the last turnstiles, until presumably enough guests have exited to re-open them.

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        • #5
          Re: Park Capacity?

          Originally posted by Mojave View Post
          By phased closures, do you simply mean they reduce the number of open turnstiles? Say from 12 to 6 or something, basically slowing the number of guests entering per hour. And then further reduce, ultimately closing the last turnstiles, until presumably enough guests have exited to re-open them.
          Level 1 - Every one is good.
          Level 2- Stop selling 1 day tix.
          Level 3- Stop selling multi day hoppers (they will sell APs.)
          Level 4 - No new entries, only readmits with handstamps.
          Level 5 - Park closed, no one gets in.
          If you see a cute yellow lab puppy with a yellow cape, WAVE! It might be us! (Or it may be someone else that lurks here!) Thank you for asking before you pet! Next trip, Dec 22-Jan 3rd.

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          • #6
            Re: Park Capacity?

            Originally posted by Mojave View Post
            By phased closures, do you simply mean they reduce the number of open turnstiles? Say from 12 to 6 or something, basically slowing the number of guests entering per hour. And then further reduce, ultimately closing the last turnstiles, until presumably enough guests have exited to re-open them.

            Phased closure means they cut off who can get in.
            Stop ticket sales and close the parking areas, nobody just showing up can get in.
            Stop letting people who haven't used their multi day ticket that day in.
            Stop letting people who have been in the park but left, to hop or any other reason back in.
            At the worst they don't let APs, resort guests or guest with in park reservations in, totally closed.

            They wait for people to exit and reverse the closures one by one.

            This can happen at either park but it depends on the individual park.

            This can happen, watch out when the regular parking is full and you are sent to Garden Walk or the Convention Center. Watch out if it says everybody needs a hand stamp to reenter. When the park is at risk stay inside don't risk hopping.

            Except on NYE, usually the parks calm down after the parade and then reopen when closed. On NYE though it gets busier as the day goes on so often gets close in the evening and take a while to reopen.
            Be Cool Stay in School!
            Next year I'm trying for a summer internship at Stark Industries.

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            • #7
              Re: Park Capacity?

              IIRC, Cars Land evened out the crowds a bit taking some of the pressure off of Disneyland (and I don't know how true that still is a year and a half later, particularly at holiday time), but if you're there on New Years, as night falls you should pick one park and stay there. Don't risk being stuck outside.

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              • #8
                Re: Park Capacity?

                I believe it's 86K for Dland, and 50Kish for DCA

                To put that into perspective, Universal sells out at 40K.
                Disneyland and Haunted Mansion fan boy!

                Universal Studios Hollywood Employee

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                • #9
                  Re: Park Capacity?

                  One of the best reasons why they should put in a path around the back of the ROA connecting CC & Frotierland, is to increase park capacity. Put at least 2 new rides back there and they would start drawing the crowds much further into the park.
                  "Disneyland is a work of love. We didn't go into Disneyland just with the idea of making money." - ​Walt Disney

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                  • #10
                    Re: Park Capacity?

                    Originally posted by Linus View Post
                    I believe it's 86K for Dland, and 50Kish for DCA

                    To put that into perspective, Universal sells out at 40K.
                    No, those are attendance numbers, not capacity numbers. Very different. Capacity at DL is lower than 60K.
                    If you see a cute yellow lab puppy with a yellow cape, WAVE! It might be us! (Or it may be someone else that lurks here!) Thank you for asking before you pet! Next trip, Dec 22-Jan 3rd.

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                    • #11
                      Re: Park Capacity?

                      Looking at the crowd predictor below, DL often hits about 70K so the max number must be closer to that.
                      Disneyland Attendance Info - Daily Attendance / Queue Length - The Disneyland Linkage

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                      • #12
                        Re: Park Capacity?

                        You're still looking at attendance, which is not the same as capacity. Capacity implies people concurrently inside. Attendance is any person who went in (and may have subsequently exited prior to others' initial arrival) in a given day. Think of folks who come at opening and leave early afternoon, or people who don't arrive until the evening and stay til close. It's easy for there to be a 20k difference in capacity vs attendance.

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                        • #13
                          Re: Park Capacity?

                          A quick Google search shows sources like Fire Marshall's and DL staff suggesting 75~85000 in the park at any given time is max capacity. I found no other repeatable anecdotal evidence to support any other number.
                          Feel free to share your search results.
                          Last edited by ScottG; 12-22-2013, 11:42 AM.

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                          • #14
                            Re: Park Capacity?

                            I've been in LA over the holidays (but not at the park), and heard on the news that the park is at capacity and closed. In the paper the next day it said that there were 85,000 admittances by 1.00pm.
                            "Disneyland is a work of love. We didn't go into Disneyland just with the idea of making money." - ​Walt Disney

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                            • #15
                              Re: Park Capacity?

                              Originally posted by ScottG View Post
                              A quick Google search shows sources like Fire Marshall's and DL staff suggesting 75~85000 in the park at any given time is max capacity. I found no other repeatable anecdotal evidence to support any other number.
                              Feel free to share your search results.
                              As a Disney cast member I wish I could say more but capacity of Disneyland is definitely not anywhere near 80,000! The park would be completely terrible and absolutely unmanageable with that many people. Capacity and daily attendance numbers are very different...
                              The views and opinions expressed on this post are mine and do not necessarily represent or reflect those of The Walt Disney Company and Affiliated Companies

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