Seven Important Tips to Stay Safe at Disney
I know that you want to go to Walt Disney World right now.
You’ve watched MickeyBlog’s Facebook streams enough to know that the parks remain empty. So, you’ll have a terrific visit.
You may worry about your safety, though. We are living through a pandemic, after all. Well, I’m here to help.
Here are seven tips to stay safe in Orlando in the age of Coronavirus.
Let’s start with the one that we all wish we didn’t have to do.
The reality is that people cannot give strangers the benefit of the doubt during a pandemic.
As an optimist, I believe that most people are kind and well-intended.
In the Disney community, those numbers are even higher. If you’re reading this site, odds are outstanding that you’re a decent, thoughtful person.
Your family must be so proud! Order dessert today to treat yourself. You’ve earned it.
Unfortunately, even at Walt Disney World, some jerks are unavoidable.
You know the ones. They yell at cast members, aim their strollers at you, and drive their carts over your feet.
Sadly, anyone who does that is unlikely to follow the basic rules of common decency during the pandemic.
So, as much as none of us wants to think the worst of others, it’s an imperative right now.
You must stay alert while traveling, as someone else’s recklessness could cause you to get COVID-19.
I do have some terrific news on this front, though. To date, Florida hasn’t traced a single outbreak to a theme park.
If you’re vigilant, you should avoid becoming an unpleasant statistic.
Bring Supplies (masks, disinfecting wipes)
When you travel, you should bring your own packs of disinfecting wipes and hand sanitizer.
That’s not even pandemic-related advice. It’s just a good idea in general.
When you’re at Walt Disney World, you’ll have access to hand-washing and hand sanitizer stations aplenty.
Still, it’s a better safe than sorry scenario. When you’re in your hotel room, you’ll want to keep clean, especially if you refuse maid service.
A lot of people are choosing that option to minimize contact due to COVID-19 concerns.
More importantly, your travel to and from Orlando will require the use of disinfecting wipes and hand sanitizer.
Finally, you should bring several masks with you. In fact, I’d suggest packing at least one spare when you travel to the parks.
As many have mentioned, Walt Disney World can bring the heat. Should you get sticky and sweaty, you may take comfort in switching masks.
Otherwise, you have a damp one on your face, which isn’t ideal.
Then, there’s a rain factor. Orlando experiences rainy weather on most days, and that can wet your mask a different way.
By bringing a spare (or two), you solve the problem proactively.
Check Everyone’s Temperature before Leaving
Okay, this one might be overkill, but I’m cautious by nature.
I suggest that everyone should utilize a thermometer before heading out for the parks.
This thought process especially applies to those of you traveling in large groups.
Nobody wants to be a buzzkill at Walt Disney World. And Disney requires temperature checks before it’ll allow guests into the parks.
So, you should buy one of those touchless monitors, presuming that you haven’t already done so.
Then, have everyone in your party verify that they’re well under the 100.4-degree mark that Disney requires for park admission.
Anyone above that should stay behind and try to cool off. If that person’s temperature remains high, they should speak to Disney about options.
This step isn’t entirely necessary. However, it will save someone from disappointment and frustration at the park.
Don’t Touch Items in the Stores
ARGH! This one drives me cah-razy!!!
One of society’s Coronavirus vulnerabilities stems from high-touch areas.
At these locations, many/most guests grab something, thereby spreading germs.
So, the first person picks something up to examine it. Then, (s)he puts it down, only for the next person to repeat the process.
You’ve effectively just held hands with a total stranger during a pandemic. You might as well go lick a toilet while you’re at it.
The worst part about this behavior is that it’s so easily avoidable. Disney has posted signs everywhere to remind people to look but don’t touch.
For whatever reason, some guests ignore this request entirely. They pick up the cute items that they have no intention of purchasing.
In the process, they grab the germs of anyone who previously did the same stupid thing.
Also, they pass along their own germs to those who repeat the maddening behavior later.
Unless you intend to purchase something, leave it alone!
Use the Hand Sanitizer!
Come on! This one’s easy!
Park officials have purchased a massive amount of hand sanitizer and placed stations throughout the parks.
Of note are the stations at the exits to rides and in restaurants and stores.
These sanitary options aren’t there by accident. Disney executives carefully examined the places where infection risks were higher than usual.
Then, they placed hand sanitizer stations in those places, thereby protecting you.
Unfortunately, the strategy fails if you ignore the warning signs and skip the hand sanitizer.
This process literally takes five seconds, and you’re not just doing it for yourself. You’re also protecting other guests when you clean your hands.
Use Mobile Ordering
Let’s think about the restaurant experience for a moment.
As a customer, you arrive, enter a line, approach an employee, place your order, pay for the food, and then stand idly by waiting for the chef to prepare it.
During a pandemic, several of those parts make you cringe, right?
You don’t want to stand in a line unless you’re confident everyone else will honor social distancing.
Thankfully, Disney enforces this policy. So, you’re okay on that front.
Interacting face-to-face with a stranger isn’t great, though, even if it’s a cast member wearing a face shield. Frankly, they’re not thrilled about it, either.
You certainly don’t want to hand your credit card to someone, have them touch it long enough to execute the transaction, and then give it back to you.
Standing in an area where others could crowd you is problematic, too.
I can probably stop right here, as you’ve already gotten the point.
Mobile Ordering provides your salvation during the pandemic.
All you need to touch is your phone when you order and then your food when you pick it up.
You never interact with anyone else, and the system employs contactless payment.
Mobile Ordering eliminates every potential stressor in the dining process. This one’s a no-brainer.
Never Leave the Bubble
When I say the Bubble, I’m referencing the Walt Disney World campus.
In the best of times, guests appreciate Disney’s ability to make magic so much that they think of the place as a private paradise.
The Disney Bubble is where people go to escape the real world, and park immersion reaches such heights that this sensation occurs naturally.
I often forget what day it is when I’m at Walt Disney World.
Alas, Disney doesn’t manage the rest of Orlando, even some of the places near the parks.
Not coincidentally, many Central Florida locals have suggested that they feel safer at the parks than at the grocery store.
For whatever reason, Disney does a substantially better job of enforcing policies than law enforcement and government officials.
So, when you’re in the Disney Bubble, don’t leave! You’re safer where you are!