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Central Florida Theme Parks to Re-Open Soon

Last week, we heard more about the plans to open major theme parks in Central Florida. Here's a summary of what we were told.

Universal Orlando Resort®

Universal announced their plans two weeks ago, ahead of the other parks. They have already started to welcome employees back on site in preparation for a June 5 public opening. Ahead of that, they have an Annual Passholder preview event.

Preparations include:

  • Guests and team members are required to wear face coverings

  • Guests and team members are required to undergo temperature checks. Anyone with a temperature of 100.4 degrees or greater will not be able to enter Universal CityWalk® or the theme parks

  • Staggered parking within the parking garage to help create distance between travel groups

  • Limiting and reducing daily park attendance and attraction ridership in Universal Studios, Islands of Adventure and Universal’s Volcano Bay

  • Increasing cleaning and disinfection of food locations, ride vehicles and other frequent “touch points” that go beyond our already-aggressive cleaning procedures

  • Social distancing at all locations through the parks, within attractions and queues and at restaurants

  • Having Virtual Line available for select attractions

  • Offering cashless payments and “no touch” policies where possible

In addition, the hotels at Universal Orlando start to reopen today, June 2, 2020.

Walt Disney World Resort®

Disney Springs®, the shopping, dining and entertainment district, has already opened up some of their venues. Access is limited and temperature checks and face masks are required.

The Walt Disney World Resort theme parks will reopen to the public starting on July 11, 2020. They plan to open two parks each day with Magic Kingdom® and Animal Kingdom® going first and then EPCOT® and Hollywood Studios® opening on July 15, 2020. A reservation for the parks will be required. A new reservation system is reportedly in the works but no details have been made available. Park hours will be limited and they will be staggered with opening and closing times one hour apart. This should reduce crowding at transportation loading points.

In addition to requiring temperature checks, face masks in the parks, and social distancing, Walt Disney World® has also canceled all dining reservations and Fast Passes previously reserved for guests. They will also not be selling their very popular Disney Dining Plans for the foreseeable future.

DVC resorts plus Fort Wilderness are slated to open back up on June 22, 2020. We have not heard about the other resorts. Reservations may only be canceled at this time and no new reservations may be made.

SeaWorld Orlando and Busch Gardens Tampa

SeaWorld Orlando and Busch Gardens Tampa plan to open on June 11, 2020.

Plans Include:

  • Face coverings will be required for all employees and guests ages 2 and older.

  • Physical distancing will be promoted throughout the park by ground markings and signage.

  • Contactless payments will be encouraged, and plexiglass will be installed in high-traffic areas.

  • Cleaning and sanitization will be increased, and hand sanitizing stations will be installed.

  • Temperature screenings required for employees and guests before entering the park.

  • Employees will receive new training on new park operating procedures, which includes guidance from the CDC and health advisers.

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