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A Sort-of Theme Park Sophie's Choice - to go or not to go to TDR during the holidays

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  • [Question] A Sort-of Theme Park Sophie's Choice - to go or not to go to TDR during the holidays

    I've long dreamed of going to Japan, and this year it's quite nearly within reach.

    Unfortunately due to numerous commitments (and that fact that I'm a teacher), the only time I have to go will be Dec. 29 to Jan. 5, which might was well be just as bad as the Golden Week. Well maybe not. The light days according to the calendar are Dec. 31 and Jan. 1 at a mere 98 & 86 % capacity.

    There will be some reprieve on Jan. 5, but that's the day the Mansion and Splash will close. Two of my favorite rides, which I haven't been on in ten years.

    Will it be even possible to enjoy the parks on these days? Would it be better to not go? Perhaps Osaka instead with Harry Potter, arguably bringing in similar crowds, which at least we will all be just jostling over one ride?

  • #2
    Re: A Sort-of Theme Park Sophie's Choice - to go or not to go to TDR during the holid

    That's odd. I went a few years ago and the park didn't seem overly crowded in December.

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    • #3
      Re: A Sort-of Theme Park Sophie's Choice - to go or not to go to TDR during the holid

      I suppose you went earlier in December?

      I plan to be in Japan Dec. 29-Jan. 5 which is smack in the middle of the winter break, and unfortunately the predicted crowds are as shown below.

      I know MiceChatters are smart people when it comes to planning, so they would naturally avoid these peak dates. However, given that this will be a major reason to go to Japan, and I've been dying to go to Japan, I wonder if it will still be worth it and if anyone has had experience navigating the park on days like these.


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      • #4
        Re: A Sort-of Theme Park Sophie's Choice - to go or not to go to TDR during the holid

        Your crowd calendar looks different than this one, which goes by # of anticipated visitors, not percentages. The 31st and 1st do not look awful.

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        • #5
          Re: A Sort-of Theme Park Sophie's Choice - to go or not to go to TDR during the holid

          My Japanese is rusty, so I'm having trouble figuring out the link you shared, shelemm.

          Is one necessarily more reliable than the other? Thanks!

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          • #6
            Re: A Sort-of Theme Park Sophie's Choice - to go or not to go to TDR during the holid

            Dont trust crowd calendar! but Christmas is not overcrowded, especially at DisneySea. Meanwhile international guests head to E-ticket rides every time they go to TDR, I recommend you to see the seasonal shows/ parades (although there will be no Christmas shows after 25th). I mean rides will be there forever, but shows will be gone so you should watch some shows, especially Mystic Rhythms. I went on Jan 3, 4, 5 and it was very comfortable.

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            • #7
              Re: A Sort-of Theme Park Sophie's Choice - to go or not to go to TDR during the holid

              We went on two capacity (they actually stopped selling tickets) days last Christmas-season, and it was not nearly as bad as I had expected.

              Crowd control in TDR is much better than in the US parks, so even though you will encounter some really long lines for big attractions, it's still very much possible to enjoy the parks during the busiest times of year. You should have to plan accordingly, be willing to use Single Rider where it's available, and have reasonable expectations with regard to E-Tickets.
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              • #8
                Re: A Sort-of Theme Park Sophie's Choice - to go or not to go to TDR during the holid

                Go whenever you can go, and make the very best of it. It's an amazing place.

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                • #9
                  Re: A Sort-of Theme Park Sophie's Choice - to go or not to go to TDR during the holid

                  Originally posted by Duyanh92 View Post
                  Dont trust crowd calendar! but Christmas is not overcrowded, especially at DisneySea. Meanwhile international guests head to E-ticket rides every time they go to TDR, I recommend you to see the seasonal shows/ parades (although there will be no Christmas shows after 25th). I mean rides will be there forever, but shows will be gone so you should watch some shows, especially Mystic Rhythms. I went on Jan 3, 4, 5 and it was very comfortable.

                  So it's not always accurate?

                  Are all the shows worth it? I mean, apart from just going to TDR, I want to ride all those classic rides from my childhood that are absent from HKDL (I'm looking at you Peter Pan, PotC, and HM). I will definitely want to see Mystic Rhythms.

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                  • #10
                    Re: A Sort-of Theme Park Sophie's Choice - to go or not to go to TDR during the holid

                    Originally posted by GUYNYC View Post
                    Go whenever you can go, and make the very best of it. It's an amazing place.
                    All right! Will do! Thanks!

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                    • #11
                      Re: A Sort-of Theme Park Sophie's Choice - to go or not to go to TDR during the holid

                      Originally posted by WDWFigment View Post
                      We went on two capacity (they actually stopped selling tickets) days last Christmas-season, and it was not nearly as bad as I had expected.

                      Crowd control in TDR is much better than in the US parks, so even though you will encounter some really long lines for big attractions, it's still very much possible to enjoy the parks during the busiest times of year. You should have to plan accordingly, be willing to use Single Rider where it's available, and have reasonable expectations with regard to E-Tickets.
                      That's actually another big concern. I don't think I'll be able to afford to stay on property for this trip, especially since it'll be the winter break.

                      How would one go about securing tickets in advance for those staying off property on these busiest of days?

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                      • #12
                        Re: A Sort-of Theme Park Sophie's Choice - to go or not to go to TDR during the holid

                        You can get your ticket on the TDR website up to 2 months in advance

                        Tokyo Disney Resort Online Reservations & Tickets: About Park Tickets

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                        • #13
                          Re: A Sort-of Theme Park Sophie's Choice - to go or not to go to TDR during the holid

                          The show is worth depending on how engaging you are!

                          For example, there are many foreign people who actually doesnt like Mickey & Duffy Spring Voyage shows! And they said like these shows are waste of time. If you actually get in line and wait for the show. You will find the show is lovely with catchy music!

                          Im the one who said I hate Minnie's Tropical Splash at DisneySea but I changed my mind after seeing it for my first time. I got completely soaked and it was so much fun!

                          You actually need to ride your classic rides from your childhood, but in case the park is so crowded and you feel that you cant wait that long for it. You must have in mind your back-up plan. If the park is overcrowd, this mean they will absolutely provide more stage shows such as Minnie oh Minnie or One Man Dreams up to 9 p.m. Or you can find some never-crowd attractions such as Mark Twain, Treehouse, Tom Sawyer Island,...

                          As I mentioned before, the crowd calendar is not always true. For example, when I went to Disney Store, They stopped selling ticket to both TDL and TDS on 3rd of Jan (Crowd calendar=100% capacity) However, when I went to TDL on 3rd. Park ticket was available and the park is not too overcrowd.

                          Also, weather forecast is the crowd preditor for the next day. This is because Japanese look for weather forecast 1-2 days before they actually go to the resort. There was a day the weather forecast showed that it will snow tomorrow. And the park was actually clear on the next day, and it was not snow. This can also happen for raining and storm as well.

                          Finally I want to state GUYNYC sentence again 'Go whenever you can go, and make the very best of it. It's an amazing place.'

                          The whole resort is awesome and if you cannot do your favorite attractions, try to do different things. Go grab some snacks, have a lunch, or enjoy the scenic. I mean, there are so much thing to do inside both parks. You dont need to ride the big attractions. Explore some small detail of Tokyo DisneySea or ride a Gondola!!! Do whatever you can!

                          Originally posted by SirEdge View Post
                          So it's not always accurate?

                          Are all the shows worth it? I mean, apart from just going to TDR, I want to ride all those classic rides from my childhood that are absent from HKDL (I'm looking at you Peter Pan, PotC, and HM). I will definitely want to see Mystic Rhythms.
                          Last edited by Duyanh92; 08-12-2014, 12:16 AM.

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                          • #14
                            Re: A Sort-of Theme Park Sophie's Choice - to go or not to go to TDR during the holid

                            It's actually called a "Hobson's Choice," not a "Sophie's Choice." The latter involves death and concentration camps.

                            As for going on very busy days, I would suggest not doing it. On very busy days, both parks are total madhouses with long long lines, and it can be very cold, too, because of the wind off the bay in winter.
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                            • #15
                              Re: A Sort-of Theme Park Sophie's Choice - to go or not to go to TDR during the holid

                              Originally posted by Fukai View Post
                              It's actually called a "Hobson's Choice," not a "Sophie's Choice." The latter involves death and concentration camps.

                              As for going on very busy days, I would suggest not doing it. On very busy days, both parks are total madhouses with long long lines, and it can be very cold, too, because of the wind off the bay in winter.
                              Yeah, I'm aware that Sophie's Choice is about death and concentration camps. Thankfully, nothing of the sort could be found at TDR.

                              Actually it's not a take it or leave it thing, because I also really want to go to Osaka for Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey as well. Except that I can't choose both. Seeing that this is the TDR board, I wanted to get a feel for the feasibility of going to TDR during the winter breaks.

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