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Disney unveiled plans to reopen their Orlando theme parks. Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom will open to guestson July 11. Epcot and Hollywood studios will open to guests on Wednesday, July 15.
Bob Chapek said on Bloomberg TV, “we always said we would not open again until we could do so responsibly. We have some learnings from Shaghai and from Disney Springs and we have some learnings on how to maintain social distancing. That is the key for us. We are confident we can do that and open up responsibly.”
With other resorts and theme parks scrambling to open in the next couple of weeks, Disney is not opening their first park(s) until July 11. That means that Disney will miss out on the mega income of July 4th and the days surrounding.
Typically July 4 is a time at the Disney parks where crowds are an 11/10 and guests clamor to snag spots for the once a year fireworks displays hours in advance. Well, theme parks will be nowhere near full capacity and there won’t be any fireworks in the near future so Disney wouldn’t be capitalizing on that holiday even if they were opening their gates.
When asked why Disney would be shuttered for an additional month when their competitors were opening as soon as possible. Chapek had this to say, ” For us, we feel it is the right time for us in July. We have a different situation frankly, as we are much igger have a more complex business and have a different labor system. At the same time we are going to be implementing a new reseration system for our guests and it will take some time to take the millions of reservations we have already got on the book and switch to a new reservation system.”
While many are rushing to open, Disney is taking the time to completely revamp, even if only temporarily their reservation and ticket system to better accomodate guests with the new health and safety requirements in place.
Disney has canceled all dining reservations and FastPass bookings for guests planning on visiting their Orlando theme parks. You can read more about that HERE!
Disney has states that they will eventually reopen dining reservations, but will do so with a 60-day booking window and not a 180-day booking window.
Although these new developments are frustrating for guests hoping to and planning to visit Disney, but it’s important to remember that the shear size of Disney means that procedures and protocols must be unique and different from other comanies.
Disney has a responsibility to keep their guests and their castmembers safe and they are going the extra mile to do so. Although the uncertainty remains as there is no end date to these new procedures and protocols that Disney is putting in place are well-thought out to ensure guests feel safe and that Disney is doing everything in their power to maintain the magic during this transition period.
Disney has announced that pools will reopen and that masks will (of course) not be required in the pool areas. Although Disney is currently not accepting new reservations for resorts or selling new tickets for theme parks, as the restrictions lessen, we expect both to slowly open up as Disney works to safely increase their capacities.
As was the case in Shanghai, Disney opened at a much lower max capacity than required by the government and slowly increased the number of people accepted into the parks.
Patience is the key as both Disney and guests navigate these uncharted post-Coronavirus waters. There are a lot of new procedures and Disney is continually releasing more information as they solidify their plan. We will continue to bring you that information as it becomes available.
Thank you for stopping by and for the love of the mouse, never forget, that it all started with a mouse.