Pending Orange County and state approval, Walt Disney World Resort proposed plans for Magic Kingdom Park and Disney’s Animal Kingdom to begin a phased reopening to the general public on July 11, followed by EPCOTand Disney’s Hollywood Studios on July 15. In preparing to reopen during this unusual time, Disney has to manage their theme parks in a very different way from what we’ve known before. As they begin to reach out to Cast Members and call them back to work, they will be focused on operating the parks in a responsible way that continues to give Guests opportunities to create magical Disney memories.
This phased reopening will demonstrate a deliberate approach, with limits on attendance and controlled Guest density that aligns with guidance on physical distancing. That means certain experiences which Disney knows draw large group gatherings – such as parades and nighttime spectaculars – will return at a later date. In addition, “high-touch” experiences such as makeover opportunities, playgrounds and character meet and greets will remain temporarily unavailable, but characters will still be in our parks to entertain and delight Guests.
Because theme park capacity will be significantly limited as Disney welcomes Guests back to the magic, they will manage attendance through a new theme park reservation system that will require all Guests to obtain a reservation for park entry in advance. At this time, Disney is temporarily pausing new ticket sales and Disney Resort hotel reservations so they can focus on Guests with existing tickets and reservations. Disney Vacation Club members, however, can still make new reservations.
Existing ticket holders and Annual Passholders will be able to make reservation requests in phases before new tickets are sold; Disney will be reaching out to these Guests soon to provide additional details. Disney will resume new ticket sales and hotel reservations after that period of time. Theme park reservations will be limited due to attendance limitations and will be subject to availability. More details about this new reservation system will be available soon.
Additionally, Disney Vacation Club resorts at Walt Disney World will reopen to members and Guests and Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort & Campground will begin to reopen on June 22. Disney Vacation Club resorts in Vero Beach, Florida, and Hilton Head, South Carolina, will also open to members and Guests starting on June 15. Plans to support required physical distancing as well as enhanced cleaning measures, along with a number of other safety and cleanliness protocols, will be implemented as part of this planned phased reopening.