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If you plan on visiting a Walt Disney World theme park on New Year's Eve, here are some tips to help make your day as painless as possible:
1) You should arrive early in the morning at the park of your choice and be prepared to spend your entire day there. The parks will reach capacity with no further admittance allowed. Park hopping on New Year's Eve is not recommended.
2) It's a common misconception that guests staying in a Disney Resort are guaranteed admittance into every park. This is not true; as a Disney Resort guest you are promised to gain entrance into a park, but it may not be the park of your choice. Note that having a dining reservation does not mean that you will be allowed in if that park has already reached capacity.
3) For your comfort, arrive early and rent a locker. Should the weather be an issue, you can stow your warm clothes or raingear.
4) If there's an attraction on your "must-do" list, try to make a FastPass+ reservation for it. It's not uncommon to see waits of 2+ hours at the most popular attractions.
5) The parks will have live entertainment throughout the day/evening in addition to special midnight fireworks. Be sure to grab a Times Guide upon entering the park.
11:40pm: IllumiNations with a countdown and fireworks salute to the New Year
DJ and light show at Future World Fountain Stage
Flame effects and a smoke-billowing dragon in the China pavilion
a British blast to the past in the United Kingdom pavilion
Euro-pop and lasers in the Italy pavilion
a Latin band and DJ on the America Gardens Stage
a "Silent DJ" party in the Japan pavilion
New Year's Eve at Epcot World ShowPlace - all-you-care-to-eat family night with photo ops, fun vignettes for posing and Disney music playing in the background. Seatings from 3-9pm. Cost is $72.90 for adults and $44.38 for children (ages 3-9). Afterwards, head out to watch the holiday version of IllumiNations.
Monsieur Paul New Year's Eve Dinner - This four-course, prix fixe meal will feature classic French cuisine. Six seatings will be available - 11:45am, noon, 2:15pm, 2:45pm, 5:45pm, and 6:15pm. Price is $110.81. A late night seating will be available at 8:45pm and 9:45pm for $305.03.
Disney Countdown to Midnight - Disney's Contemporary Resort
December 31, 2016 - reservations now open!
This event will be held in the Convention Center's Fantasia Ballroom beginning at 8:00pm. Ring in the New Year with music from across the decades, from the '60s until today. Food and drinks will be from California Grill, Flying Fish, Citricos, and Narcoossee's and feature the "best-of-the-best" bites and wine pairings.
The group Alter Ego will perform a music and dance revue. Guests can then head outside for a musical act playing songs of today with a retro twist. Themed photo backdrops will be available for you to use in creating the perfect souvenir to commemorate the night.
End the night with a champagne toast during the Magic Kingdom fireworks.
For reservations, call 407-939-3463.
Victoria & Albert's New Year's Eve Dinner - This evening will feature "butler-style" service, live harp music, and personalized keepsake menus. Seatings between 6-7:45pm. $600 per person.
Narcoossee's New Year's Eve Dinner - 4-course menu with seatings between 5-5:45pm will be $150 for adults and $70 for children (ages 3-9). From 8:30-9:25pm, a 5-course menu will be served with live music. $255 for adults and $95 for children (ages 3-9).
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Celebrate the New Year at Disney Springs West Side's Cirque du Soleil La Nouba. There will be a special finale at each performance, a limited edition La Nouba trading pin for each guest and specialty drinks for purchase.