Today is a big day, Disney fans! Walt Disney World has announced not only opening dates for its theme parks, but the guidelines that need to be followed to help keep us safe. From what to expect when you’re in the parks to ticketing and lodging (and, of course, masks) here are the most important things to know about Disney World reopening 2020.
When Is Disney World Reopening 2020?
Disney Springs opened this month on May 20th and, so far, so good. Guests are required to maintain a distance of six feet and wear masks while visiting. Okay, no problem. But what about the four parks?
Here are the reopening dates for each park:
Magic Kingdom – July 11, 2020
Disney’s Animal Kingdom – July 11, 2020
Epcot – July 15, 2020
Disney’s Hollywood Studios – July 15, 2020
At this time, there’s no opening date for either water park. I’ll add it when they announce. As Walt Disney World is opening in phases, it seems that it’s testing the waters with each phase for efficiency and safety before an additional phase is a go.
As for Photopass photographers, there is no mention that they won’t be in the parks, so it’s wishful thinking.
Will I Have to Wear A Mask When Disney World Reopens?
If you’re three years of age or older, yep. This goes for common areas of both the theme parks and resorts.
There is no mention of having to wear mandatory gloves, though.
You’ll also be required to have your temperature checked before you enter any theme park or Disney Springs.
Do I Need a Reservation to Enter the Disney Parks?
In a word, yes. For now, both new ticket sales and Disney Resort reservations are no hold. This will allow Disney to concentrate on already-existing reservations/tickets. However, if you’re a DVC member you may still make new reservations.
The official statement from Disney:
“Existing ticket holders and Annual Passholders will be able to make reservation requests in phases before new tickets are sold; we’ll be reaching out to these guests soon to provide additional details. ” Afterward, new ticket sales and reservations will begin. So, keep an eye on your inbox if you’re interested in going when opening begins.
UPDATE: Disney released a reservation system for Annual Passholders for park admission July 9th & 10th. Tickets were sold out in 45 minutes!
Can I Use Cash to Pay for Items?
While a cashless system is preferred (Disney gift cards, credit cards, or charging to your guest room when available), it looks like you’re still able. Personally, I’d put the cash on a Disney gift card for simplicity’s sake.
Or, if you have bonus points on your credit card for dining/shopping, that’s a good idea, too. But, please remember to pay off your balance before you incur interest charges.
What Will Be Missing from the Disney Parks when They Reopen?
Several things. Firstly, parades and nighttime shows will not be available. I can understand why, too. Most guests crowd the center of the parks to get a good view and, right now, crowding is not a good thing.
Makeover opportunities (think Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique) are on hold when the parks open, too. Again, all about that safe social distancing.
“High Touch” Experiences are a no go for now. These include character meet and greets. However, characters will be in the parks to entertain. So, I’m thinking it will be more of a wandering type of situation as details haven’t been announced.
What Will Attendance Be Like?
There’s no specific number out, but Disney has specified that theme park attendance will be limited and will be subject to availability. Translation? No one will be able to enter a theme park without a reservation. So, there will be no turning up at a theme park entrance with out a reservation and be given a go ahead. There’s no date to officially sign up for a reservation yet, but I’ll add it when there is.
And, when reservations do begin, please don’t let it be like trying to score a pair of Minnie Main Attraction ears. I can only hope there’s a clickable link and enough bandwidth/customer service. UPDATE: Disney Parks rolled out park reservations and, while many did get through with little effort many more were on hold for hours, both online and over the phone.
But, for right now, I did look online on both Priceline and Hotwire and there are Disney Springs Hotels that have availability. Just sayin’. While Disney Springs Hotels do offer Early Morning Magic hours (EMH), there’s no mention that the parks will offer them at this time.
As of July 5th, there will be no Extra Magic Hours until further notice.
When Will the Disney World Resorts Open?
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.
Starting June 15th, Disney Vacation Club resorts in Vero Beach, Florida, and Hilton Head, South Carolina, will also open to members and guests.
When opened, enhanced cleaning measures and physical distancing will be required.
Here’s the link to the phased reopening for Disney World Resorts. Please note, there’s no mention of the All-Star Resorts – one of my favorite places to stay on property.
Alright, so far that’s all of the goodies in regards to Disney World reopening 2020. As soon as more information becomes available, I’ll be sure to keep this post up to date.