What was originally thought to be a long way off turns out to have been closer than expected. Following a nationwide relaxation of social distancing guidelines, Disney is preparing to reopen its United States-based theme parks, with Florida’s Disney Springs set to kick off the undertaking this Wednesday.
The parks will not resume business as usual, though. In a recent blog post, Disney Parks executive Matt Simon laid out six policies intended to keep the spread of the coronavirus in check whilst resuming operations, which include subjecting guests to temperature screenings upon entering the park, as well as requiring them to wear face masks as long as they’re inside.
According to Simon, the use of masks will be mandatory for both guests and employees. He also said that people whose body temperature exceeds 100.4 degrees will be denied access to the parks, alongside any other member of their party regardless of their own temperatures. In addition, Disney announced that it will enforce social distancing rules for waiting lines, reduce hours of operation to allow for extensive cleaning of attractions, and limit parking spaces and entrances to the premises.
Despite health concerns, Disney promises that safety is their biggest priority, saying:
“Everything we’re doing during this unprecedented time is in service of our guests, our cast members and our third-party operating participants, who will also be following these new guidelines in their locations,” Simon explains. “We are constantly monitoring conditions and best practices, and we continue to learn every day from health and government authorities. As a result, our operational changes and safety measures may change from time to time as circumstances evolve. We want to deliver all the Disney magic you know and love with safety, as always, our top priority.”
Disney is not just reopening its American facilities. Earlier this week, their park in Shanghai opened its gates with similar safety precautions in place. Whether these measures prove sufficient to contain the virus, however, remains to be seen. But tell us, will you be heading out to any parks in the near future, or are you going to hold off for a bit longer? As always, let us know your thoughts down below and watch this space for more.