No Fastpass+ Advance Planning Will Be Available
Disney has made the unprecedented step of completely shutting down the FastPass+ service for the foreseeable future and will be using the additional queue space to manage capacity at attractions and maintain physical distancing. Disney has said that they will automatically cancel existing FastPass+ selections and guests will instead be directed to use the new virtual queueing system that will be used for many attractions. All current FastPass+ reservations have already been cancelled, and the FastPass+ section of My Disney Experience has been completely removed.
What You Can Bring Into Walt Disney World Parks
All guests are required to go through a security checkpoint before entering Disneys theme parks and water parks. Bags, clothing, and other personal items are subject to screening. With this in mind, its crucial that you bring only items that are allowed inside parks so you wont be turned away.
Remember, just because you can bring something to the park doesnt mean that you should. The more stuff you take, the more youll have to carry around all day long . Lessen the burden and bring only what you really need.
With that said, here are the items that Disney allows you to bring into the parks.
Can I Bring A Gopro To Disney World
Yes, Disney World does allow GoPro and many of the accessories. These include the harness, head strap, Karma grip, housings and more. They do not allow any GoPro accessory that is extendable. Disneys GoPro policy allows you to wear your GoPro or take your GoPro on Disney Rides. Learn more about GoPros at Disney and what is and is not allowed. See the section below for more information on taking a camera onto rides at Disney.
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Make Dining Reservations Early
As soon as you are 60 days out from your arrival, you can begin to make Disney Dining Reservations. Be sure to do them as soon as you can, as they fill up.
And, many places onlyaccept dining reservations To put this in perspective, very few dining reservations were available when we were there.
There are some restaurants accepting a waiting list which you can join from your My Disney Experience app. Some of these are an hour wait and you have to be near the restaurant to join the walk up list.
But, my suggestion is to get those dining reservations at 60 days out, especially for coveted restaurants like the new Space 220 restaurant in Epcot and the new experience at the Be Our Guest restaurant in Magic Kingdom.
If you keep checking, sometimes new times get released. But if you have your heart set on a dining experience, or want to guarantee a sit-down meal, book it early!
In addition, Quick Service lines are long and you can only order via the My Disney Experience app . So, it is good to have Disney dining reservations in your pocket.
Event Cancelation Or Date Changes
There are many large events held in Walt Disney World every year and many have either been canceled or highly modified in order to run. Some Disney World events that have been affected are:
- runDisney Races
- Sporting Events
- After Hours Events
In 2022, runDisney events are back including the Walt Disney World Marathon, Disney Princess Half-Marathon, and the Disney Wine and Dine Half-Marathon.
EPCOT festivals like the EPCOT Food and Wine Festival have returned and will be running in 2022 and beyond. It has been starting earlier every year since 2020, and will likely be earlier once again this year.
Hard-ticketed events are now starting to return to Disney World including Mickeys Not-So-Scary Halloween Party . The modified version of Mickeys Very Merry Christmas Party has also been running .
Disney has also recently brought back the DVC Moonlight Magic events which we are super pumped about since we consider them the best after-hours events of the year.
Besides just the safety reasons, with fewer guests, it just doesnt make sense from a profitability standpoint to keep the parks open for that late at night.
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Character Meet And Greets
You can leave your autograph books at home, as you won’t be up close and personal with the characters. The characters do make appearances, but they are from afar.
Now, you can get close enough to stand near the characters, but don’t expect that warm hug from Mickey Mouse or Winnie the Pooh at Magic Kingdom. You still can’t get close enough to touch the characters. But you can at least get a photo near them.
Character dining is available, but modified, in select locations. You can book reservations at Garden Grill Restaurant, Hollywood & Vine, Topolinos Terrace Flavors of the Riviera and Chef Mickey’s for character dining.
Disney World Star Wars Hotel Galactic Starcruiser
Not an attraction per se but this experience is anticipated to be like boarding a starship alive with characters and stories that unfold all around you.
It might be a star wars hotel but Disney refers to it as This isnt storytelling its storyliving, where youll see, feel and live Star Wars in a whole new way.
This hotel/ experience is expected to open in March 2022.
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Current Walt Disney World Covid Rules And Restrictions
Are you up-to-date on safety policies? Walt Disney World COVID rules and restrictions. Updated 05-01-2022.
Fumbling with your mask in the doorway? Are there still temperature checks? Disney World COVID-19 rules are ever-evolving as we learn more about the virus and how to prevent the spread. With so many changes over the last couple of years, it can be difficult to keep track of our expectations at the parks.
Here are the current COVID-19 rules and safety policies happening at Walt Disney World.
Can You Bring Costumes Into Disney World
In Disney World children under the age of 14 can wear costumes however adults are not allowed to wear costumes of any kind unless they are attending a Halloween party. This so that very little guests do not get confused as to who the characters are and who regular guests are. A lot of adults like to Disney Bound to still feel like they are channeling their favorite character. Disney Bounding is putting together an outfit of regular clothing that is in the same color scheme and design as their favorite character.
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Social Distancing And Park Capacity
Another health and safety measurement that had a major impact on the guest experience in the earliest days of Disney Worlds phased reopening are social distancing policies and overall park capacity. When Disney World first reopened, capacity was very much limited, with six-foot social distancing markers seen throughout the parks, resorts, and at Disney Springs.
Dinosaur Queue with social distancing floor markers
These days, however, youll find that formal social distancing has been more or less lifted. Disney World also announced earlier in 2021 that park capacity would slowly increase over time, with the parks looking more and more like their pre-pandemic levels in recent weeks. With more entertainment returning to the parks in 2022, it looks like Disney World is continuing to relax their social distancing guidelines even further.
Fireworks Crowds in October 2021
You may find in 2022 that the crowds in Disney World look an awful lot like crowds in 2019, especially at times where crowds tend to congregate, like for the fireworks or at peak times of the day in those areas prone to congestion. While Disney will continue to assess park capacity as it relates to the latest health and safety guidelines, we wouldnt expect to see wide-open walkways like we did in those first few months after the parks reopened.
They Must Have A Unique Name
Back when Walt Disney first opened Disneyland, he insisted that everyone be on a first-name basis with each other. This leads to more camaraderie and less fear between people of different levels at work. However, it can also make for some awkward situations between employees who work in the same area. You see, no two people working the same job on the same shift can have the same name. So if you are named Jennifer and there’s another, more senior Jennifer on your shift, you’re given a temporary name tag with a different name to wear while you work.
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You Cant Take A Bad Picture At Cinderella Castle
Well, you cant get a badly lit photo, that is. Cinderella Castle was designed facing south, so the sun is never directly behind it, plus its situated so there are no possible shadows from other buildings, meaning even if your family all has their eyes shut, your lighting will still be fabulous.
Can I Still Get If I Have A Dining Reservation And The Park Is At Capacity
What happens if you have an Advanced Dining Reservation for a restaurant at one of the parks, but that park reaches capacity? This is a question we are still waiting for an answer from Disney on.
After talking with some Cast Members about the issue wed like to think that Disney would honor your dining reservations, but we have to wait for confirmation on that.
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Disney World Water Park Updates
Nearly an entire year after being closed, Disney’s Blizzard Beach reopened March 7, 2021! Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon remains closed until further notice. For the most part, you’ll find similar health and safety measures as you go across the resort. Mobile ordering is required at a few dining locations to keep contact to a minimum.
There Are Height Requirements
If you have always dreamed of playing a character at a Disney park, you might be heartbroken at the casting process. Whether you want to play a face character or a fur character , there are strict height requirements for the Cast Members. Size, especially in comparison to kids, is important to conveying the character to Guests. For instance, the Beast has to be tall because he is big and formidable, while Tinkerbell must be petite because she is a tiny fairy.
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Theres A Basketball Court In The Matterhorn Ride
Near the top of Disneylands Matterhorn Bobsleds ride is a secret, attic-like room with a basketball hoop and floor markings. The secret Disney room started as a resting place for Disney employees who climb the mountain, then transformed into a mini half-court when one worker brought a basketball hoop when the weather kept staff from climbing.
A Tricky Clause In The Contract
When Disney stars sign up to represent the company, they have to agree to some incredibly strict rules. One of them is renowned as being the “morality clause” on each of the talents’ contracts. They pretty much mean that the stars can be dropped at any time if they’re caught up in a scandal that would bring their name, and that of Disney into disrepute.
We can think of a fair few that could cause Disney some trouble.
The studio don’t have to enact the clause if something does come up, however. When Vanessa Hudgens had private photos leaked all over the internet, the company actually decided to keep her around. Weighing up the good and the bad of each outcome, Disney will at times stick by their stars. Still, it’s gotta be hard for the talent to have that constant cloud hanging over them.
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No Climbing On The Scenery
Climbing on rocks, statues, walls, etc. presents an obvious safety hazard to the guests. Plus, it could damage the set pieces that Cast Members work tirelessly to maintain.
The Seas With Nemo and Friends
But what makes this rule weird is that some places that are pretty obviously NOT meant for climbing do have warning signs that specifyno climbing.
Art of Animation Resort
Unfortunately, in some cases, signs had to be added after a guest did attempt to climb an object. Case in point the pyramid in EPCOTs Mexico Pavilion had a no climbing sign added several years ago after a guest attempted to scale it.
EPCOT Mexico Pavilion
Other unauthorized climbing instances in recent years include a group of guests attempting to climb the Tree of Life in Animal Kingdom and a guest hopping on stage at Walt Disneys Carousel of Progress.
Tree of Life
There are plenty of awesome attractions at Disney World, theres no need to create our own by scaling the scenery!
Nothing Exists Outside Of Disney
For Cast Members playing characters, they must act like nothing exists outside of the Disney universe while on shift. They can acknowledge other characters and things that aren’t from their movie, but have to act like they have never heard of things that don’t exist in Disney films. For example, if you ask Cinderella which Hogwarts house she would be in or question Peter Pan about his favorite fast food restaurant, they would have to act like they had no clue what you’re on about.
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There Are Hidden Mickeys All Over The Park
As if theres not enough fun to be had between the rides, meet-and-greets, themed restaurants, and entertainment, Disney Imagineers also snuck a fun, ever-evolving scavenger hunt into the parks. In everything from paintings to fountains to rocks, eagle-eyed guests can spot hidden Mickeys: distinctive shapes of Mickey Mouses round head with two smaller round ears. Next time you visit one of the parks, keep an eye out for some and see how many you can spot! And no cheatingthings that are obviously supposed to be shaped like Mickey, like the Mickey waffles or ice creams, dont count. For a primer, check out these photos of some of the hidden Mickeys we spotted.
Park Reservations Will Be Required
In order to gain entrance to a Walt Disney World theme park, all guests, no matter whether they are staying on-site or somewhere else, will need valid admission tickets as well as an arrival reservation time. And interestingly, Disney has said that they will not be granting special access to resort guests. If a guest does not have a reservation window to go with their tickets, they simply won’t be able to visit the theme parks, even if they have a dining reservation.
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Making Money Even After Life
When the late Carrie Fisher passed away, Disney had a huge payout. Taking in $50 million thanks to insurance, it became clear that for the company has all of their bases covered.
As heartless as it may sound, the insurance doesn’t just mean they benefit from the deaths of their talents. It’s instead in place to make sure that any contracts the late actor or actress had with the company, that would be left unfulfilled after their end would allow for Disney to recoup their losses.
We imagine that this sort of thing is in place for all of Disney’s biggest names. If a tragedy did happen, the company has to know that they’ll be able to continue without taking a huge loss in their coffers.
Why Cant You Bring Ice Into Disney World
In March of 2019 Disney World banned loose ice in coolers in the parks. Instead, you can use reusable ice bags or simply just fill plastic zip bags with ice. A lot of people were confused as to why this happened. Basically, it was implemented as part of Project Stardust.
In this project, Disney was trying to streamline bag check with the expected increase in visitors for Galaxys Edge. After the parks reopened in the summer of 2020 all four parks, as well as Disney Springs, have the new style bag checks where you dont even have to take off your bags. It makes me curious if that was planned all along within that project or it was put in place because of the virus.
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Reservations & Wait Times
Right now, advanced dining reservations in Disney World are mostly required for guests dining at sit-down restaurants. Reservations up to this point are a little harder to get with a lower dining capacity at each restaurant.
As Disney slowly increases hotel and park capacity and as people start to travel more, we have also seen restaurant capacity expand to offset the increase in guests.
Thankfully, Disney has come out with the Mobile Dine Waitlist which lets you see the stand-by wait times for each restaurant in case you dont already have a reservation.
They Aren’t Allowed To Say I Don’t Know
“I don’t know” is not a phrase in Disney Cast Members’ vocabularies. Disney’s customer service standards require each employee to go out of their way to help Guests with whatever problem or question they may have, even if it’s in no way their department. If a CM doesn’t know the answer to something, they must call another person who does and won’t leave you until your problem has been resolved successfully. Leaving a Guest without assistance or an answer is the ultimate no-no!
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