Newer player. Need help planning for new expansion

I started playing WoW at the end of the Legion expansion and the leveling of my main took me forever and I never reached level cap until after BFA dropped. Because of this I don’t know how to handle a new expansion from day one. Idk if I should just get my main to the new level cap, make an alt now and start leveling, or make an alt when Shadowlands drops. I’m pretty sure I’m overthinking this but I would love to hear what the best methods of experiencing a new expansion are.

If you want to level up alts, right now is a great time to do it with the 100% XP bonus.

Beyond that:

The main advantage to leveling alts before shadowlands is that you’ll have some options when it lands if you want to swap mains. (While they aren’t predicting any major class changes, sometimes even the small ones can change how you enjoy a class.)

The main advantage for waiting is that they will be updated the leveling process, so absent the 100% XP buff, it may be faster to level them in Shadowlands. It will definitely be more streamlined, and easier to experience a whole expansion’s story.

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I would level alts now with the 100% exp buff, which is faster than after Shadowlands launches. Additionally, when Shadowlands launches you’ll probably want to play Shadowlands where almost everyone is playing.

Part of this depends on what you want to do in the new expansion. Do you want to be able to join a raiding guild and start content at the beginning? Do you want to be doing heroics as fast as you can? Do you want to take your time, level, get loremaster, raise your professions?

Having been active for every expansion release since WotLK, I’ve been through a few. For those that I was raid leading (pretty much all through Warlords), I would level pretty quickly, focus on getting to max level, getting gear, and being ready to enter the next raid tier as soon as it was available. Once I got geared, I would work on professions (including fishing/cooking). Everything else would come after that.

Since I quit raiding, I get my main up to max level, work on Lore Master at a leisurely pace, do some dungeons, maybe level professions, maybe level an alt or two. I generally try to do most things on my main first because hunters are stupid easy (especially after playing one for 13 years) to quest/solo. The only real reason I do that is because I’m lazy and would prefer to level alts with the ability to fly. My first alt to hit max level this expansion was 118 when I got flying. Now I’ve got a few more at max level and a few in the mid-teens.

As Udiza said, the changes in leveling might make it faster to get alts to what will be current content. But like Astyss mentioned, the 100% xp buff makes leveling go VERY fast right now. You’ll run out of rested XP pretty quickly. What I’ve been doing is playing an alt until rested runs out, then switching to a different one until it runs out. By that time, the first one has rested again.

Since I’m working from home, I play a lot more than I normally do right now. Both good and bad of staying at home!