Earlier today, Walt Disney World submitted a proposal for a potential reopening of its theme parks in mid July. If this proposal is approved on both county and state levels, Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom are set to open on July 11, 2020, followed closely by EPCOT and Hollywood Studios on July 15, 2020. The Walt Disney World Resort in Florida has been closed since March 16, and the first reopening phase of Disney Springs began last week. (UPDATE 6/9: The proposal has been approved and Walt Disney World will begin their reopening stage on July 11).
New guidelines and rules will be implemented with employee and guest health and safety in mind that will continue for the foreseeable future. All employees and guests over the age of 3 will be required to wear a mask in the theme parks and the common areas of the resort hotels (Disney Springs also currently requires that employees and guests wear masks). Both cast members and guests will also undergo temperature screenings. Enhanced frequent cleaning measures will also be implemented throughout, and cashless transactions are recommended in order to limit employee/guest contact. More details are provided in this Disney Parks Blog article for all of these requirements and safety procedures.
During this phased reopening period, the parks will be limited attendance, and guests will be required to make a reservation ahead of time through a new “theme park reservation system” in order to enter the parks. More details on ticket sales and the new reservation system can be found in this official Disney Parks Blog announcement.
Physical distancing guidelines will also be implemented throughout the parks, including areas that generally see guests in close contact such as ride queues, restaurants, and shops.
Experiences that draw large crowds such as parades and firework spectaculars are being temporarily suspended, as well as anything that are considered “high-touch” activities such as character meet and greets, makeovers, and playgrounds. However, Disney has stated that characters will still be present in the parks “to entertain and delight [their] guests.”
Not much information has been provided yet on all Disney-owned resort hotels, however the official announcement did provide some details on the reopening of DVC resorts as well as Disney’s Fort Wilderness on June 22, 2020. You can read more about the new protocols for healthy and safety at resorts on the Disney Parks Blog website.
We are encouraged to see Walt Disney World begin to reopen little by little while keeping the safety and health of their employees and guests at the forefront, and we will continue to keep an eye out for any more details that are released regarding the reopening of the Walt Disney World theme parks and resorts!
UPDATE 6/9: Read our article Reopening Changes and Updates for Walt Disney World for newly released official details about the reopening phase!