Both Walt Disney World Resort in Florida and the Disneyland Resort in California are set to make the wearing of masks mandatory for park-goers when indoors. The rule change is set to come into effect from Friday, July 30th, and comes after the mask mandate had previously been dropped by the company earlier in the year.
The two resorts are extremely popular destinations for millions of Americans each year, and the rule changes stem from Disney acting on updated advice from the CDC. Here’s a look at why the changes are being made, and what travelers can expect from a visit to one of the US’s Disney theme parks.
Why Masks Are Required Once More – Information for Travelers
For decades, the only people wearing masks at Disney theme parks in the US were the cast members in their colorful, elaborate costumes. However, fast forward to this year and the wearing of masks has once more become a mandatory rule. The news is set to come as a blow to the thousands of Americans who had previously booked trips to the theme parks under the impression that they could visit without needing to wear a facemask, with the previous mask mandate at the parks having been lifted just last month.
The decision to impose the mandatory wearing of masks indoors has been made following updated guidance that the CDC released on Tuesday. In their latest update, the CDC recommended that people in high-risk areas should wear masks indoors once more – regardless of vaccination status. Given that both California and Florida – states that have Disney theme parks – are places with high transmission rates, the new recommendations are being applied to those visiting the parks.
Masks At Disney – What Travelers Should Know
On Wednesday, Disney announced that it was adapting its health and safety regulations based on guidance from health and government officials, regardless of vaccination status.
Speaking to the press, a spokesperson said:
“We are adapting our health and safety guidelines based on guidance from health and government officials, and will require Cast Members and Guests ages 2 and up, to wear face coverings in all indoor locations at Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland Resort beginning Friday, July 30, regardless of vaccination status. At Walt Disney World Resort, this includes upon entering and throughout all attractions and in enclosed transportation vehicles, including shuttles, buses, monorails and at Disney Skyliner.”
In the case of the Disneyland Resort in California, this is in line with restrictions imposed by the state, with the state of California yesterday calling for universal indoor masking. However, despite calls by the mayor of Orange County, Florida has no such mandate and looks unlike to issue one based on previous decisions made by the state.
Whilst the mandatory wearing of masks may remove some of the charms of the typical Disney experience, there’s still plenty of magic to be found at the parks – but visiting during the pandemic is different to visiting during normal times. Capacity limits and the need to reserve tickets may make it harder to visit the parks but will ensure social distancing is being maintained. Travelers should also note that not every hotel is open at the moment, and typical attractions such as parades and shows are on hold at the moment.
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Disclaimer: Current travel rules and restrictions can change without notice. The decision to travel is ultimately your responsibility. Contact your consulate and/or local authorities to confirm your nationality’s entry and/or any changes to travel requirements before traveling. Travel Off Path does not endorse traveling against government advisories