Fort Walton Beach
I've been to WDW/Universal in Fall, Winter and Spring. Seems like the crowds varied widely depending on when I went. I really like not having to fight the crowds - what do you all think is the best time of year to go? A specific holiday weekend or time of month would be great.
If you are looking for a time were the crowds are low, I would recommend Thanksgiving. Also, for Disney World, going during Christmas is definitely very crowded, but it's an unforgettable experience, especially if you decide to spend New Year's at Magic Kingdom.
Hands down- Fall is the best time to visit. The crowds die down to close to nothing when the kids go back to school in September.
Hi after living in Orlando area for 25 years, the times to go to the parks without crowds has gotten harder. They always have special promotions for the times that used to be slow. From my own experiences the last few years the week right before the week of Thanksgiving and 2 weeks before Christmas seem to be good. I went to Disney World on December 15 last time and it was the only time I was able to go on all the rides there with minimal lines. They are usually slow times for tourists. All weekends can be busy because of locals going to the parks, once the the summer heat is gone. The fast passes help no matter when you go to the parks, and you can get them online before your trip. That's the way to go, so no matter how crowded a park is, you can ride the must haves for your trip. Universal is always busy now because of The Wizarding World Of Harry Potter.
Mentioned in this answer:
I agree with Gerry about Thanksgiving weekend - especially for the theme park turkey legs! Sure beats cooking a bird! My experience at Walt Disney World Resort one year actually ON Thanksgiving was... pretty crowded...I will take that advice too about going the day after when everyone's doing the Black Friday thing...
About fighting the crowds, I think it's more than just timing. You should capitalize on off-site accommodations to save money and gain space. People are quick to book stays at Disney Hotels or at Universal Studiosresorts. But when you're staying at Disney and want to go to Universal... that logic is sort of defeated. So if you want to park hop, I recommend choosing lodging that is centrally located and provides shuttle access to multiple attractions year round. You should check out Lake Buena Vista Resort Village & Spa It's really great for families - from grandparents to kids- especially if you're going to spend a (Thanksgiving) holiday weekend in Orlando. Check out http://www.lbvorlandoresort.com/things-to-do/
Finally, I really really recommend doing fast pass at any park, any time of the year. I just got back from Six Flags here in California and I am now taking an oath to ALWAYS pay extra to go to the front of the lines for rides at every theme park with whatever similar "Fast Pass" offer. For example: https://disneyworld.disney.go.com/plan/my-disney-experience/fastpass-plus/
Have fun in Orlando!
Mentioned in this answer:
my buddy always took his kids to the theme parks on the day after Thanksgiving, no crowds.
Everyone`s caught up with Black Friday or saving money for Christmas shopping!!!