A decorative orange Mickey Mouse Pumpkin hanging in front of a darkly lit Cinderella Castle.

Is Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party Worth It?

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July 7, 2023

Usually kicking off in August and extending through Halloween, Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party (MNSSHP) is an event that runs during select nights at Magic Kingdom and requires a hard ticket, separate from regular park admission, to attend.

As with anything involving extra cash at Disney, the next question is always: So, is it worth it?

Our short answer:


Of all the Disney park “extras,” we love MNSSHP above all and believe it is probably the one most worth attending.

But if you aren’t sure about spending the extra money per person, we will break down the party’s pros and cons for you.

The #1 Best Way to Make a Disney Party “Worth It”

We all know Disney extras cost…well, extra on top of an already expensive vacation.

But if you want to go to the party and max out on value, the only thing you have to remember is this:

While the party normally “starts” in the evening (usually 7pm), party-goers are allowed into the Magic Kingdom park as early as 4 pm.

With party hours normally ending at midnight, this amounts to a full park day of access to rides, characters, parades, fireworks, and more.

With that knowledge, we recommend staying within your budget by substituting a full-priced regular admission park day for a party night instead!*

*Trust us, you’ll want to avoid spending a full morning at another park, then trying to stay up late for the party.

Party Day Itinerary

The key to success (i.e., you and the kids lasting late enough to actually enjoy the party) is a chill morning/afternoon. 

We have attended many Disney parties over the years, and these are our absolute favorite ways to spend the day:

  • Take a shopping trip to Disney Springs, browse, then have a big lunch before heading to Magic Kingdom closer to 4 pm.

  • Spend the day indulging in our favorite non-park pastime: resort hopping.

    Check out the activities offered at other resorts, go gawk at the deluxe resort lobbies, have lunch at Steakhouse 71, or beeline to Trader Sam’s at the Poly to get on the waitlist the millisecond they open!

  • SLEEP IN. This is unheard of at Disney. But remember – you have near a full park day available to you with a party ticket.

So sleep in, enjoy a leisurely breakfast, and lounge by the pool!

Who We Think Would Love the Party

  • Older kids and kiddos with flexible bedtimes 
  • Adults and night owls
  • Magic Kingdom fans who want great theming and new ride experiences
  • Those interested in the “exclusives” like rare characters and party-specific parades,
    fireworks, and stage shows
  • Those who want to capitalize on shorter waits for rides

We know the Halloween lovers have already bought their tickets and booked airfare. 

Who We Think Should Consider Skipping the Party

  • Families with young children*
  • Kids with early bedtimes
  • Those already planning on a full park day (it’s just too much to do that and the party)

*Note: You know your family best! If this is something your kids would love and it would be worth it for you to attend, you should.

We only caution families with young ones attending MNSSHP due to our experience witnessing countless pint-sized nuclear meltdowns, and kids passed out in their strollers, missing the bulk of the events.

Don’t just take it from us.

When polled, our VIP members kindly offered their own party experiences to help out anyone trying to decide whether or not to attend! 

🍭 If you’re traveling with little ones…

“The only regret I have for this event…..We traveled with three littles who missed nap time that day because of our planned lunch. That equaled major meltdowns during the parade.

My advice If traveling with the littles, make it an early resort/pool day with a hefty nap midday! You will have an incredible time.” (Ali G).                       

“We went when my kids were ages 3 and 5 years old. They both loved seeing the characters you can’t normally see and they both really liked the live actors on Pirates of the Caribbean ride! But both of them fell asleep in their strollers (which I was very thankful they each had a stroller) for a couple of hours during the night. So while they were sleeping, my husband and I were the ones collecting all the candy. 😂” (Jennifer H.)

🎃 If you’re into Halloween vibes…

“Oh my goodness, we did this last year and LOVED it! There were special photo ops, candy everywhere, and the special shows/cavalcades were INCREDIBLE.” (Ali G.)

“I would recommend focusing on the Halloween things. I really enjoyed the vibe on Main Street (lights, music). If you get a chance to go to MK on a non-party night, it’s amazing how different they can make it feel.” (Jeff F.)

Ain’t no party like a Disney party! The parade is our favorite, trick or treating throughout the park with as much candy as you can get your hands on.” (Lindsey M.)

👻 If you’re on the fence…

“I think it’s worth it if you love Halloween, you want to ride some of your favorite attractions with lower waits, you enjoy specialty themed treats and ride overlays, you like TONS of free candy, like seeing families in costume, you want to meet some rare characters (like Jack and Sally). The parade is AMAZING! (Jess C.)

“We went to Boo Bash in 2021 and MNSSHP last year [2022]. We really enjoy it. We’re going this year and I’m hoping to be a little less focused on the rides and enjoy more of the entertainment. The kids love having the family dress up in the same theme costumes.” (Mary G.)

“Skip it if you’re on a tight budget, you have sleepyheads that can’t hang late (small kiddos), you’re only kinda into Halloween, or you’re expecting the crowds to be VERY minimal. They won’t be.” (Jess C.)

While crowds definitely aren’t minimal at MNSSHP anymore, we like sharing strategies to help make your (very valuable!) time in the parks more fun for you and everyone in your group.

If you’re attending the party this year, you’ll continue to get tips (party and otherwise!) from us in our weekly Listletter.

And don’t forget: VIP Members will also receive full itineraries and strategies for the Halloween and Christmas parties! 😎