After 117 days of being closed (but who’s counting) Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom at Disney World reopened this weekend and I was there to experience it all! My return to Disney World started Friday, July 10 at the Magic Kingdom for Passholder Preview.
Followed by official reopening day July 11 at Disney’s Animal Kingdom and then closing the circle by returning to Magic Kingdom on Sunday.
Throughout the entire weekend, I felt safe, impressed, and was honestly so happy to be back!
It was obvious that Disney’s main priority is the safety of their guest and cast members and I believe they achieved that while still providing the magic.
Let’s Talk About Masks
From my observation, this weekend, almost all the guests that I saw were wearing masks with very rare expectations mostly when taking pictures.
I was hesitant about wearing a mask all day in the heat, but I came prepared and survived! Honestly, it is hot in this Florida sun with or without a mask. So I recommend portable fans, staying hydrated, taking long lunch breaks, and enjoy the indoor air-conditioned rides in the afternoons.
We left Magic Kingdom for lunch at the Polynesian on our last day and it was the perfect escape from the heat. There are also a few relaxation stations available at each park where guests can remove their masks while still socially distancing.
Guests and Cast Member Safety
I believe Disney has thought of everything when it comes to the safety of guests and their Cast Members.
I was not expecting so many plexiglass dividers in the parks and resorts, but they were great and create a barrier for most face to face interactions. They even have sanitized pens and scannable menus.
From what I observed, most guests were following the distance makers on the grounds and indicated entrances and exits in shops. For more information on safety measures, check this out.
I have to admit that I was nervous when no FastPass+ was announced. However, the low crowds this weekend proved that there was no need for them at all.
The majority of the rides were walk-ons and to our surprise, my party had a whole row of vehicles to ourselves on Avatar Flight of Passage. Disney once again provided plenty of space between parties on rides by skipping rows, bypassing some waiting areas, and reducing the number of guests on a ride.
There was only one situation on the Kilimanjaro Safaris where I did not feel 100% safe with the number of guests on my safari truck, so I simply choose not to ride it.
Is the magic still there?
Absolutely! Just hearing the Disney music, walking down Main Street, U.S.A and seeing the newly painted Cinderella’s Castle brought tears to my eyes.
Sure, it’s not exactly the same without character meet-and-greets and nighttime entertainment but Disney has filled that void with fun character cavalcades throughout the day.
Cast Members are still creating magical moments for all the guests and I believe as long as we keep following the guidelines, Disney will remain safe and magical!
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