Disney World Planning Phased Reopening With Opening of Disney Springs

This is taken from an article in Insider Travel Report.

No, it’s not the entire Walt Disney World theme park resort, but the restaurant, entertainment and shopping complex known as Disney Springs will begin a phased reopening on May 20. Following the guidance of government and health officials, a limited number of shopping and dining experiences that are owned by third-party operating participants will begin to open during this initial phase. Indeed, on May 4 Florida opened up many restaurants around the state, including in the Orlando area near Disney.

For now, however, the rest of Walt Disney World Resort will remain closed, including theme parks and resort hotels, though there’s been speculation that it will reopen sometime in July. This also comes as Disney begins reopening Shanghai Disneyland today, May 11.

Disney says it will continue to monitor conditions, and with the health of guests and Disney cast members at the forefront of its planning, it is making several operational changes. Disney Springs will begin to reopen in a way that incorporates enhanced safety measures, including increased cleaning procedures, the use of appropriate face coverings by both cast members and guests, limited-contact guest services and additional safety training for cast members. Disney says it will apply those learnings and ideas from leaders in the health and travel industries. It also is talking to its unions as it prepares for some cast members to return to work.

During the initial opening phase, Disney Springs will have limitations on capacity, parking and operating hours. Given the current situation, it says it appreciate everyone’s patience and understanding as it navigates through this process as responsibly as it can. Additional protocols and procedures may be announced closer to the opening date. Check the www.DisneySprings.com for the most current information on operating hours, locations and safety procedures as May 20 nears.

As Disney announced plans to reopen Shanghai Disneyland last week, Disney Chief Medical Officer Dr. Pamela Hymel gave an update on what guests can expect once its other parks, resorts and stores reopen. The company is looking into phased reopening at all locations, whether it be a gradual reopening or partial for certain areas.

Hymel said Disney is working to manage guest density and social distancing with, not just restaurants and hotels, but queues and ride vehicles. The measure will likely include guest capacity that matches state and federal guidelines to keep visitors and employees safe. Disney also is looking into virtual queues for Disney World and Disneyland with the help of its app.

Like most businesses, Disney plans to increase its cleaning and figure out where the high-traffic areas in locations are. As for screening and prevention of the spread of coronavirus, Hymel said Disney will follow the guidance from the government and the medical community when it comes to enhanced screening. That includes measures such as face coverings. Disney has already added extra hand sanitizer and hand washing stations at resorts. Cast members will get new training and reinforcement when Disney locations get closer to reopening.

“Given the constantly changing global health environment, these practices may evolve as we consider the latest guidance, but we will share more information with you as we look towards reopening,” said Hymel. “We’re looking forward to welcoming all of you back to our Disney parks, resorts and stores.” For more information, visit www.waltdisneyworld.com.

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