When Disney had to shut down the parks at the beginning of the pandemic there was a lot of uncertainty of what things would look like when they reopened. While Disneyland still has not reopened in California, Disney World has been open since July with limited capacity. I have had the opportunity to visit the parks in the Walt Disney Resort a couple times since the reopening. While the resorts and parks have maintained the magic it is easy to see it is not the same. With capacity restrictions and Covid-19 protocols in place Walt Disney World are planning to make some changes to the overall experience for some guest. Here are a couple of changes that have been announced in the recent months
No More Complimentary Magic Bands For Resort Guest
One of the big teases before actually going to Disney World is getting your complimentary MagicBands in the mail about two weeks before your trip. Along with souvenir luggage tags no longer being mailed prior to trips, Disney had previously announced that complimentary MagicBands would be discontinued for Disney World Resort hotel guests. However, while that change was set to take place on January 1st, 2021, it looks like it has already arrived on the site! Now, when Disney World Resort hotel guests that have reservations in 2021 go to select their MagicBand options, they will no longer see a complimentary option.
This change actually makes sense because of the technological updates at the resorts. The current MagicBands have a longer life span which allows guest to use their special MagicBand more often. The parks have incorporated more options on the Mobile App that it is not necessary to were a magic band anymore.
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No More Magical Express
For those who plan on flying into Orlando and take the Magical Express in 2022 will be very disappointed. Beginning January 1st, 2022, Disney’s Magical Express will no longer be available for transportation to and from the MCO airport. The service will continue to be available throughout 2021 but will end with the start of next year. This service was used heavily prior to the Pandemic but to restrictions and lack of visitors flying into Orlando’s airport has caused Disney to reevaluate offering this service.
The Magical Express will be unavailable next year, but Mears will continue operations in the Orlando area. Mears spokesperson Roger Chapin stated, “Walt Disney made us aware of their decision. While we are disappointed Disney will no longer offer this service, we intend to continue offering transportation services between the airport and all area theme parks and hotels to meet the demand of our visitors now and in the future.”
Early Theme Park Entry For Resort Guest
There is news that is an addition to the experience for staying on property. Disney Resort hotel guests and other select hotels will soon be able to take advantage of early theme park hours again for the 50th anniversary! The option will be available exclusively to Disney World Resort hotel guests, who will be able to enter the theme parks with 30-minute early entry. You will be required to have a Disney Park Pass for the park you are visiting with early entrance. This addition will replace the Magic Hours that were scheduled for an individual park.
Overall some of these changes might change your view of the parks right now but as things open up there will be more changes for the better.
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