Walt Disney World Pauses New Sales of All Non-Florida Resident Annual Passes

According to reports, Walt Disney World is pausing new sales of some of its annual passes.

New sales of the Pirate, Sorcerer and Incredi-Pass have been paused. The Pixie Dust (Florida residents) is the only pass that is available for new purchases.

This does not impact renewals, it only affects new purchases.

Disney has not stated when the sales of these passes will resume, but sources say that the pause will last at least through the end of the year and will resume sales sometime in 2022.

Walt Disney World Updates Mask Policy to Require Everyone to Wear Masks When Indoors

What is old is new again!

Disney has updated its mask policy following the latest CDC guidance which was published on July 27th.  The US theme parks have moved quickly to again require all guests and Cast Members to wear masks when indoors, regardless of vaccination status.

The new indoor mask requirement will go into effect on July 30th at both Walt Disney World in Florida, and Disneyland Resort in California.

This policy change is a return to an earlier policy that was in place prior to the Disney updated the policy on June 15th when they eliminated mask requirements for those who are fully vaccinated except when using enclosed transportation.

According to news reports, Orange County is seeing a rapid surge in COVID-19 cases. AdventHealth, the area’s primary healthcare provider, has said its ICUs are at capacity, and the system has moved to a red alert level.

Disney has updated the Health and Safety notice on its website to notify guests that policies may change at anytime.

As we have done since reopening, we’ve been very intentional and gradual in our approach to our COVID-19 health and safety protocols. Based on recent trends and regulatory guidance, Walt Disney World Resort will be making adjustments to these measures, which may continue to change at any time without notice.

We encourage people to get vaccinated.

Below is the latest Disney World mask policy in full:

Effective July 30

Beginning July 30, face coverings are required for all Guests (ages 2 and up) while indoors and in Disney buses, monorail and Disney Skyliner, regardless of vaccination status. This includes upon entering and throughout all attractions. Face coverings remain optional for all Guests in outdoor common areas.

Face Covering Requirements until July 30

While face coverings are required for all Guests (ages 2 and up) while in Disney buses, monorail and Disney Skyliner, they are now optional in most areas for Guests who are fully vaccinated. While we do not require proof of vaccination, we expect Guests who are not fully vaccinated to continue wearing face coverings in all indoor locations and upon entering and throughout all attractions and transportation except ferry boats.

Bob Chapek and Josh D’Amaro to speak at Destination D23

Presentations by Bob Chapek and Josh D’Amaro will headline ..Destination D23 2021.

The event will come to Disney’s Contemporary Resort at Walt Disney World November 19 – 21, 2021.

The welcome presentation with Bob Chapek, CEO, The Walt Disney Company headlines the event, alongside “What’s New and What’s Next for Disney Parks, Experiences and Products” with Chairman Josh D’Amaro.

According to Disney –

The exclusive presentation will feature updates on some of the most anticipated projects around the world. And as D23 Members know, there is always a surprise or two in store!

Tickets go on sale on July 29th at 1 PM ET. The Virtual Waiting Room will open at 1 PM ET.

Pricing for General Seating: $249 (plus $7 processing fee), Preferred Seating: $399 (plus $7 processing fee).

For those unable to be live at the event in person, select segments of Destination D23 will be live-streamed on D23.com and D23 social media channels.

Walt Disney World Expands Number of Performances of ‘A Celebration of Festival of the Lion King

Disney’s Animal Kingdom will be adding more daily performances of ‘A Celebration of Festival of the Lion King’ later this month.

Beginning July 31st, Walt Disney World will be increasing the number of performances from six per day to eight per day.

The first show will begin an hour earlier, at 9:30 AM, with a shorter midday break to accommodate another show.

The new schedule from July 31 will be: 9:30 AM, 10:30 AM, 11:30 AM, 12:30 PM, 2:00 PM, 3:00 PM, 4:00 PM, and 5:00 PM.

The show that will be performed will still the modified version, which does not include the tumble monkies and aerial acts.

Walt Disney World Announces Re-Opening Date for Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort

Earlier today, Walt Disney World announced that Disney’s Polynesian Resort will re-open to guests on July 19th following a major refurbishment of the Great Ceremonial House and guest rooms.

Although the resort will re-open July 19th, the new monorail station will not be ready for use and neither will the new main entrance. The front-desk will re-open in the Great Ceremonial House, and ‘Ohana will re-open on July 9th.

The new guest rooms will also be ready on July 19th, giving the guests checking in on this date the first opportunity to experience the new theming.

When the Polynesian re-opens, the new porte cochere will be ready, and will receive guests arriving via Disney Magical Express and valet.

Walt Disney World Delays Re-Opening of Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort

Walt Disney World announced today that it will be delaying the re-opening of Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort until summer 2021.

Disney has also indicated that it will be refurbishing the hotel beginning in October, which will include changes to the Great Ceremonial House and guest rooms.  Details on the refurbishment to be announced at a later date.

The Villas and Bungalows at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort will remain open during this refurbishment.

“As we continue to reopen additional Disney Resort hotels to Guests, we are modifying the reopening date for Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort which will reopen next summer. This schedule adjustment also allows us to complete some refurbishment work at the Resort hotel, including enhancements to the Great Ceremonial House and Guest rooms. We expect work to begin in early October and look forward to sharing more about these changes in the future. The Villas and Bungalows at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort will remain open during this refurbishment.”

Here is the revised resort hotel re-opening schedule:

  • September 21 – Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa
  • October 14 – Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort
  • November 1 – Disney’s Art of Animation Resort
  • Summer 2021 – Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort

Disney’s All Star Resorts, Disney’s Port Orleans Resort, Disney’s Beach Club and BoardWalk Inn continue to remain closed until further notice.

Impasse with Actor’s Equity Union Ends…Performers to Return to Work at Walt Disney World

In an article posted yesterday we announced that the State of Florida will begin providing COVID-19 Testing for cast members and guests the Disney Maingate Complex starting August 14th.  After this announcement, the Actor’s Equity Union signed a memorandum of understanding with Disney for Equity performers to return to work at the Walt Disney World theme parks.

Disney officials said in a notice to its workers that there would be a dedicated testing lane for its workers and their families, and that reservations could be made for testing.

“As a reminder, testing is voluntary and cast members will not be paid for testing time,” the notice said.

In a statement, Kate Shindle, president of the Actors’ Equity Association stated –

“We have been consistent that testing is an important part of ensuring a safe workplace for Equity performers, and today, I’m pleased to see that Disney World has agreed.  With the news that Disney will make testing available for Equity performers and others in the park, I’m happy to announce that Equity’s executive committee has signed a memorandum of understanding with Disney for Equity performers to return.”

The Actors’ Equity Association represents 51,000 stage performers nationwide, including about 750 at Disney World.

Disney released a statement later Wednesday stating that allowing the testing location was not in response to union demands.

“Our actions support all cast and our community at large,” the statement said.

The union began pushing Disney World to offer testing for its members in late June, before the park’s July reopening. The actors could not do their jobs wearing masks or keeping social distance, according to the union.

Equity Cast Members make up a significant portion of Walt Disney World’s live entertainment performers, which include shows such as, Beauty and the Beast, Finding Nemo, Festival of the Lion King and various castle shows.

The return of those performers would pave the way for Disney to resume shows should it wish to do so. It needs to be stated though that though a return of these shows is possible and very likely at some point, no return date or time table for their return has been indicated by either Disney or the Equity Union.  Presumably rehearsals would need to take place.  How long this could take is unknown at this time.

So, even though we don’t know a return date, it appears another part of the special Disney magic will be returning to Walt Disney World.

 

Maria and Enzo’s, The Edison and Enzo’s Hideaway Re-Opening at Disney Springs

Patina Group will be re-opening three of its Disney Springs restaurants on August 13th.  They have been closed since mid-March 2020.

Maria & Enzo’s, Enzo’s Hideway and The Edison will all reopen for dinner starting Thursday.

All three will open with Patina’s updated health and safety measures.  These include increased physical spacing, mask requirements, and screening of employees.

State of Florida to Begin Providing COVID-19 Testing at Disney’s Maingate Complex Near Animal Kingdom

The State of Florida announced that they will be opening a new testing site in Osceola County at Disney’s Maingate office complex near Disney’s Animal Kingdom.

The Maingate complex is on the south end of the property off of West Ilo Bronson Memorial Highway (US 192), located at 3010 Maingate Lane.

Testing will begin on August 14th and will be available from 7 AM to 4 PM, serving Disney Cast Members and their families, along with members of the public. Cast Members can register for a test at disneycovid19test.com, and the public can register at doineedacovid19test.com.

The test for those with or without symptoms, is self-administered with a nasal swab from inside your car, and results are delivered in 3-5 business days.

It is important to note that the tests are being offered to the public and not required.

 

Walt Disney World Expands Temperature Screenings

Walt Disney World has expanded its temperature screenings to include some of its resort hotel restaurants.

Prior to this expansion Disney was taking guest temperatures on arrival at Disney Springs and the theme parks.  Now a temperature measurement will also be taken at table service restaurants inside Walt Disney World Resort hotels.

Based on guidance from health authorities, Disney will continue its policy that anyone displaying a temperature of 100.4 F or above will be directed to an additional rescreening and assistance. Those with temperatures 100.4 F or above will not be allowed entry; those in their party will not be allowed entry either.

%d bloggers like this: