As several states begin to slowly re-open businesses despite no signs of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic slowing any time soon, the question of one of the biggest businesses in America — theme parks — has started to come to the forefront again. Disneyland and Walt Disney World remain closed indefinitely since the historic shutdown of Disney Parks amid coronavirus concerns. While there is no confirmed date for the re-opening of the parks, Orange County, where Orlando’s Walt Disney World is located, has released a series of guidelines for the theme park to follow once it re-opens.
Orange County’s Economic Recovery Task Force met Tuesday to discuss initial guidelines to keep visitors safe when Orlando’s theme parks re-open, including the Walt Disney World Resort, according to WDW News Today. The guidelines cover hotels, bars, restaurants, retail stores, and movie theaters that operate within the theme parks, which Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings expect to “realistically” open by June. Though Disney Parks has not yet confirmed a re-opening date after extending the closures past an initial April opening date, Disney is reportedly still taking reservationsfor June.
Orange County expects to re-open theme parks over the course of three phases. During Phase 1, parks may re-open at 50% capacity. Phase 2 will increase capacity to 75%. Seniors 65 or older are still encouraged to stay home through Phase 2 re-openings. Phase 3 will be considered a “return to normal.”
Here are the guidelines listed for hotels and resorts, restaurants, movie theaters, and malls and retail through Phase 1:
- Hotels and resorts: Mobile check-in will be encouraged, while room service will follow new “contactless delivery” protocols. Service items like glassware, coffee cups, mini bars, and coffee makers will be removed, while touchless hand sanitizer as well as sanitation and cleaning services will be increased through the properties. Employees will all be required to wear face masks and take temperature checks before their shifts.
- Restaurant and bars: Capacity will be limited to 50%. Restaurants will offer paper or disposable menus and encourage takeout and online orders. Touchless hand sanitizer will be available at all entry points and tables. Doors will be wiped down regularly, and bartenders must sanitize hands after each drink order. Seated tables will be set up six feet apart. Employees will also be required to wear face masks and take temperature checks before shifts.
- Movie theaters: Parties of up to 4 people will be allowed, with two seats between party. Like the other categories, touchless hand sanitizer and employee face masks and temperature checks will also be required. Railings, cupholders, and seats must be wiped down prior to each movie, and staff must leave doors open until the movie begins and open the doors 2 minutes prior to the movie ending.
- Malls and retail: Markers in checkout lines will ensure people are 6 feet apart. Like the other categories touchless hand sanitizer available at all entry points and all employees required to wear face masks. Employee temperature checks prior to shifts will be required for Interior Retail. All countertops, railings, and door surfaces must be regularly wiped down.
Larger theme parks like Disney World will also be required to have tape markings of 6 feet in ride queues, while staff are required to wipe down surfaces regularly. All employees will also be required to wear face masks and undergo temperature checks before shifts.
See the full Orange County Economic Recovery Task Force meeting details here.