Photo by Travis Gergen on Unsplash
Disneyland in Anaheim has been closed since the beginning of the pandemic last March. According to Governor Newsom, it was impossible to open safely for almost a year.
Every Disney location in the world, with the exception of Paris, disagrees with Newsom.
- Hong Kong Disneyland has reopened three times so far. It reopened between June 18th and July 15th. It then reopened September 25th through December 2nd. And it has been open since February 19th.
- Disney World in Florida has been open since July 11th.
- Tokyo Disney Resort has been open since July 1st.
- Disneyland Shanghai has been open since May 11th.
Disneyland in Anaheim will open on April 30th. That means that Paris will be the only Disney location to remain closed.
Disneyland's reopening is great news for the Anaheim community. First of all, tax revenue from the park is important to the city. But more importantly, it means jobs for many people. According to Forbes, more than 10,000 Disneyland employees will return to work. Many of those 10,000 are Anaheim residents.
Unfortunately, 10,000 is less than a third of the 32,000 Disneyland employees that were laid off.
What Disney is Saying
Here is what CEO Bob Chapek had to say about the April 30th reopening.
“We’ve seen the enthusiasm, the craving for people to return to our parks around the world. We’ve been operating at Walt Disney World for about nine months, and there certainly is no shortage of demand.”
He also expressed confidence that the reopening can be handled safely.
“I think as people become vaccinated, they become a little bit more confident in the fact that they can travel, and, you know, stay Covid-free. Consumers trust Disney to do the right thing, and we’ve certainly proven that we can [open] responsibly, whether it’s temperature checks, masks, social distancing, [or] improved hygiene around the parks.”
If you are looking to stay at a Disney Hotel during your visit, you will have a couple of options:
- The Grand Californian Hotel and Spa will open with limited capacity on April 29th.
- The Vacation Club Villa at the Grand Californian opens May 2nd.
- However, Disney’s Paradise Pier Hotel won’t open until a later date.
- The Disneyland Hotel will also reopen at a later date.
Disneyland might look something like a ghost town at first. The park will open at a much lower capacity than normal.
As of now, theme parks are allowed to open with a 15% capacity. Once Orange County moves to the orange tier, that capacity will rise to 25%. In the yellow tier, the capacity will be 35%.
The limits listed above are all maximums. Disneyland may self-impose a lower limit as it has in other parks.
Capacity at Other Locations
The state of Florida does not impose a maximum capacity on Disney World. The park could operate at full capacity if they wanted to, but they don’t. They have a self-imposed 35% capacity limit.
Shanghai Disneyland took a similar approach to Disneyworld. They were allowed a 30% capacity which would have been around 24,000 visitors. However, they started with a more conservative 5,000.
Regardless of how many visitors are allowed, Disneyland seems committed and capable of doing things safely.
California Residents Only
When the park opens, it will only allow California residents. That means that Anaheim residents should be able to visit the park even with a lower capacity.
Any time jobs are created (or recreated), it is good news. This is especially true for Disney jobs since they have proven themselves capable of reopening theme parks safely.
It is also good news since it is yet another step towards returning to something resembling normal.
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