Disney recently unveiled the broad outlines of its Walt Disney World resort reopening plan. Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom will reopen on July 11 and Hollywood Studios and Epcot will reopen on July 15. Additionally, some of the Disney Vacation Club hotels will be available to members and guests as early as June 22. An overview on the Disney Parks Blog filled in a few more details, like a temporary suspension of parades and evening spectaculars and a reservation system for park entry.
While this is vastly more information than we had a few days ago, there are still many questions about how the opening will roll out and what the new Disney normal will look like. Here are some that we have (in no particular order):
- Will there be social distancing measures implemented on the attractions? Will they look like some of our predictions?
- If everyone is mobile ordering quick-service food, how will they streamline the pick up procedures?
- How will mask use be enforced?
- Will there be rules for trying on or returning theme park merchandise?
- Since many of the international cast members returned home, how will the Epcot World Showcase pavilions be staffed?
- Will Disney’s buffet service restaurants be reconfigured to another form of service? If so, how long will this last?
- If character greetings are temporarily suspended (as mentioned in the Parks Blog), how will character meals be impacted? Will the pricing change for those venues?
- Will evening activities be added to the resorts?
- Will some resorts be temporarily closed or repurposed (stationing the NBA at Coronado Springs is one rumor), and if so, how will guests with reservations there be relocated?
- Will all of Disney’s internal transportation methods operate? If so, how will that work?
- Will MagicBand capabilities be altered in any way? For example, will non-resort guests be allowed to link a credit card for charging purposes?
- Will table service restaurant ordering be altered? Will disposable or online menus be used?
- Will there be limits to the number of guests allowed into park shops?
- Will guests be allowed to walk and eat without wearing masks? How will this impact things like popcorn and Mickey bar sales?
- Will the park trash cans be altered? Will guests be able to dispose of refuse without touching a trash can flap?
- How will characters be integrated into the parks if there are initially no meet and greets?
- How will photography work? Will guests be allowed to take off masks for photo ops?
- Will dining hours be altered?
- How will park reservations work?
- Will park hopping be allowed?
- Will paper maps and Times Guides be eliminated? What about other ephemera like stickers for kids or the welcome leis at the Polynesian?
- Given the reduction in entertainment, will ticket prices be changed in any way?
- Will resort pool seating be reconfigured in any way?
- Will resort lobby seating be reconfigured in any way?
- How will resort room cleaning practices change? Will they eliminate things like pens and the end of bed half-blankets?
- Will the new park rules be added to the resort room TV feed? Will Stacey explain them?
- When will things like the Biddidi Bobbidi Boutique and the Fancy Nancy makeover resume?
- Will backstage tours be suspended for a time?
- Will the August start date for the Epcot Food & Wine Festival be altered?
- Will the dates for Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween party be altered? Will the costume rules for MNSSHP change?
- Will the Epcot Kidcot Fun Stops be operational?
- How prevalent will the COVID-related signage be in the parks?
- Will the park entry security measures be altered? Will security cast members still touch guests’ bags, or will automated screening be implemented?
- How will temperature checks work? What happens if guests do not pass the temperature check? Will ticket refunds be allowed for medical reasons?
- Will there be any changes to Magical Express procedures? Will guests need temperature checks to board the Magical Express buses?
- Given the scrapping of the current FastPass system, will guests who previously had FastPasses be allowed priority access to the rides?
- Will fill-your-own candy stations in resort shops be eliminated?
- Will the resort refillable mug program be changed? Will guests be allowed to fill their own beverage cups?
- Will resort recreation rentals be altered?
- How will the pattern for interactive attractions change when everyone is wearing masks? Will there be new jokes for the Jungle Cruise, Monsters Inc. Laugh Floor, or Turtle Talk with Crush?
- If some queues move outdoors, how will guests be sheltered from the sun? Will there be umbrellas in the walkways?
- Other than masks for sale, will there be any other merchandise that addresses the virus situation? Jokey tees? Plush toys wearing masks?
- How will guests be instructed to social distance in resort bars and lounges?
These are just a few of the near infinite number of questions we have about the new Walt Disney World. What did we miss? What are you thinking about? Let us know in the comments.
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Filed Under: Walt Disney World (FL), coronavirus