UPDATE: ALL DISNEY PARKS WORLDWIDE WILL BE CLOSED AFTER THIS WEEKEND. DISNEYLAND WILL CLOSE AFTER CLOSE OF BUSINESS SATURDAY. WALT DISNEY WORLD WILL CLOSE AFTER CLOSE OF BUSINESS SUNDAY.
Consume any sort of media these days and there’s one story at the forefront, and that’s the spread of Coronavirus and how each of us can best deal with it.
What each of us decides to do in light of the virus is our own decision. There is no right or wrong. But as of right now, while Shanghai Disneyland Park, Hong Kong Disneyland, and Tokyo Disneyland have closed their gates indefinitely, the U.S. parks are still open. And if you do choose to keep your vacation plans, you certainly aren’t alone judging from the number of people enjoying the parks each day!
Current wait times at Magic Kingdom.
Walt Disney World’s website currently includes this answer to the frequently asked question regarding the illness: “As part of our commitment to the health and wellbeing of our Cast Members, Guests and the larger community, we are carefully monitoring the situation and are in regular contact with health agencies for information and guidance. We continue to implement preventive measures in line with their recommendations and the input of our medical teams. For example, we have added additional hand sanitizers throughout the park, increased the frequency of cleaning and disinfection in high Guest-contact areas, and are providing information about good hygiene practices and illness prevention to our Guests and Cast Members….”
As many have shared, the locations of these readily available hand sanitizers throughout the parks and resorts can be found in the app. We can do as much good in Walt Disney World as anywhere else in the world right now by following the recommendations of medical experts and simply washing and sanitizing our hands regularly.
As to what you should do if you are planning a trip – I cannot make the decision for you. I can only say that if you decide to come, you will not be alone, as the parks are brimming with happy guests right now. And you can visit with the reassurance that Disney as a whole is taking the situation very seriously.
At yesterday’s shareholders’ meeting in North Carolina, Executive Chairman and former Chief Executive Bob Iger addressed concerns head on at the outset.
Said Iger: “It’s fair to say we’re all sobered by the concern that we feel for everyone affected by this global crisis. These are challenging times for everyone.”
He continued, however, in noting that the company has survived countless crises over its nearly 100 year history, including wars, natural disasters, and economic downturns. And, in short, and somewhat poignantly, he continued, “what we’ve demonstrated over the years is that we’re incredibly resilient. If you think about the world today, what we create has never been more necessary or more important.”
And so whether you are here or not these days, whether you come as planned or opt to stay home, take comfort in knowing that the place that we all love is still here. Still, at least as of right now, with its gates open, and welcoming all of us who choose to come to this happy place.
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Do you have an upcoming trip to Walt Disney World or Disneyland planned? How are your plans impacted by the current global crisis regarding COVID-19?