Six Reasons to Go to Disney Right Now…and One Reason to Wait
Are you on the fence about making your next Walt Disney World trip? I understand that the world has gotten kind of scary.
In truth, my family has also debated the merits of visiting Disney vs. canceling. So, we did what we always do. We made a list of pros and cons.
Here are six reasons to go to Disney right now and one reason to wait.
Let’s start with the negative since it’s inescapable. The world is currently experiencing the worst pandemic in a century.
Many critics have loudly complained about the fact that Walt Disney World theme parks reopened in July.
Now, I continue to take issue with these arguments, as Universal Orlando Resort and SeaWorld Orlando opened first.
These parks avoided the same criticisms since they’re not under the microscope the way that Disney is.
Still, Florida has become something of a horror movie with its handling of multiple COVID-19 outbreaks.
More than 550,000 people have tested positive for the disease, which is roughly one out of every 40. And that’s terrifying.
So, I fully understand why you might hesitate to travel right now. I’m facing the same dilemma, and it’s stressful.
Why would anyone go to Disney during the pandemic?
Let’s start with two obvious reasons. The first one is that we all dream of getting away from the horrors of our everyday lives.
The Great Shut-In has led to much banality, as we drudge through the sameness of our days. I’m not sure I’ve known what day it is since March.
For people who have taken the pandemic seriously, we’ve stared at our own walls so long that the paint has started to peel.
We could all use some escapism, and so any vacation sounds lovely. Disney would be that much better.
Have you watched any of MickeyBlog’s livestreams on Facebook? Well, if you haven’t, why not? They’re awesome!
Presuming that you have, you know the deal here.
Disney executives have acknowledged that they braced for a larger volume of park traffic upon reopening.
However, in the time between Disney’s announcement and the reopening date, Florida suffered a Coronavirus outbreak.
Many guests reconsidered, leading to a high volume of cancellations.
Since then, the parks have remained as empty as anyone can ever recall.
For those lucky enough to have Park Passes for the day, it’s like that South Park episode where Cartman buys an amusement park.
You have the run of the place to the degree that even Walt Disney himself never claimed.
You can literally, not figuratively, ride everything at the parks if you’re motivated enough to do so.
If you’re less ambitious, you can pick your favorite attraction and ride it repeatedly throughout the day.
That’s true even if you love Avatar Flight of Passage above all else. Even that attraction features short lines right now.
So, those who are brave enough to visit during the pandemic receive unprecedented rewards.
No Planning Needed
Here’s the complaint that I hear the most about Disney park vacations.
People who have visited for decades now feel like planning has taken over these trips.
To maximize the experience, guests must book restaurant reservations 180 days in advance.
Then, you must plan your FastPasses two months before arrival.
By the time you reach Disney, the spontaneity has evaporated. Instead, you feel like you’re on a schedule the entire time, which is the opposite of relaxing.
Well, Disney has done away with FastPasses for the time being. Similarly, Advanced Dining Reservation windows don’t open until 60 days ahead of time.
Many guests aren’t using them, either. Guests would rather eat where they want whenever they get hungry, and it’s easy to do.
After all, the parks don’t suffer from crowding issues. So, you can experience Disney the old-fashioned way. Unplanned trips are back in style!
Helping Central Florida
Look, I cannot sugarcoat this situation, nor would I want to do so.
The closure of Central Florida’s theme parks has had a devastating impact on the economy. It’s destroyed the region’s morale, too.
One out of every six people in Orlando qualified for unemployment in June of 2020.
The area faces a brutal uphill battle to return to pre-pandemic levels. Until that happens, people will remain grim as more restaurants and stores close.
You can do something about this predicament.
You can vote with your wallet and thereby show love to the cast members who have treated you so well over the years.
Remember, folks. You only get what you give.
Unique Character Greetings
When the parks reopened, many critics openly questioned how Disney would maintain the magic during impossible circumstances.
Well, park managers had a few aces up their sleeves, particularly when it comes to character greetings.
Disney couldn’t very well have guests walk right up to cast members and interact like usual. That would violate social distancing and jeopardize everyone’s health.
Instead, park officials unveiled a few new tricks. The Cavalcades are probably the best of them.
During these events, cast members will ride floats or boats or cars. You’ll want to keep your camera handy to capture the magic.
At Magic Kingdom, Disney Princesses ride down Main Street, U.S.A. and other parts of the park.
You’ll never know when they’re coming because Disney has intentionally randomized the timing to prevent crowds from forming.
At Disney’s Hollywood Studios, The Incredibles and Edna Mode cruise down the street in their, I dunno, Incredi-Cars?
Vampirina and other Disney Junior stars may not seem old enough to drive, but they’ve got some sweet rides, too.
Perhaps the most unique character Cavalcades take place at Disney’s Animal Kingdom.
Disney throws Donald Duck, Launchpad McQuack, and others in boats and sails them down the park’s rivers.
Believe it or not, Disney didn’t stop there. Other surprise character appearances occur across the parks.
Personally, I’m in love with Winnie the Pooh’s EPCOT escapades.
The bear’s got a butterfly net, but he can’t catch a butterfly or anything else with it. I blame the stubby arms.
These encounters probably won’t extend past the end of the pandemic. In other words, it’s a Disney thing that’s limited time only!!!
The Comfort and Safety of Disney
I understand the pandemic looms over your decision. I’ve been the same way for a while now.
However, my family has committed to going, assuming that no other tragedies befall society over the next few weeks. We’re not due for locusts, right?
Anyway, what has reassured me is the comments from others.
People who visit Disney keep saying that they wish their local grocery store took Coronavirus as seriously as Disney does.
Florida residents talk about their stress in going to the gas station to fill up the tank. Then, they know they’re safe once they reach a Disney theme park.
That’s…not really the way the world should work, but these descriptions tell a story.
Guests feel safer at Disney theme parks than they do at the regular establishments they frequent.
Combine that thought with the knowledge that Disney has kept the magic alive at the parks despite the presence of Coronavirus.
That’s all I need to know to feel confident about taking my trip.
If I’m going to suffer through a pandemic, I might as well do it at the Most Magical Place on Earth.
We just got back from WDW 08/03/2020-08/13/2020. I would add that because many of the resorts are closed dining reservations can be a bit of a challenge, also because of the low park attendance, many small kiosks in the parks are also closed, that being said, it did force us out of our comfort zone and allow us to try many amazing restaurants that we may not have tried otherwise. We have been to WDW 5 times as a family and this was the best food-wise by far.