Many of us are forming our own opinions right now, especially when it comes to what the “new normal” will look like once this is all over.
That’s why we recently reached out to our followers on instagram and asked if they would feel comfortable going to Disney World right away once it reopens.
The results were very interesting.
Of the 752 responses we received in the first 10 minutes, 495 of you said emphatically, YES!!! In fact, many of you even said you’d be at rope drop the day the parks reopened (don’t worry — we won’t hold you to it)!
But 194 readers said NO WAY!!! And 63 people said IT DEPENDS. BEHOLD, our gorgeous pie chart making SKILLZ…
And as we’d hoped, many of you gave us reasons for your answers that we feel are important to discuss.
“Yes, Because Disney is a Safe Place.”
The overwhelming majority of responses we received were positive. Many of you truly feel Disney World will only reopen when it is safe and they’ll be taking proper precautions to protect all guests and Cast Members.
Yes. It’s Totally Safe. We’re All In.
Several people speculated how “extra clean” the already very well kept parks will be when they reopen. Some noted also that Disney already holds itself to a very high standard.
One of our readers summed up their opinion by saying, “They wouldn’t reopen if it was only ‘kinda safe.’ They’ll be 100% ready.” Another reader commented, “We already rescheduled our trip for mid-June.”
Most likely, these improvements will remain in place when the parks reopen — and there will probably be an abundance of new operational enhancements added as well.
Read more about the new features that were added to the My Disney Experience app before the parks closed here!
But while many responders were 100% in, others were…concerned.
I’ll Go…But I Won’t Bring Kids Or Anyone Who’s Immunocompromised
Some of our readers said yes, they most certainly would be going by themselves, but they wouldn’t feel comfortable bringing their small children or elderly parents quite yet.
Others told us while they felt comfortable going to the parks, they would be trying to avoid heavy crowd areas such as popular parade spots and firework viewing areas, assuming those were to resume right away.
Many of you who answered yes also seemed to think the parks might not be very crowded, at least initially. It’s kind of ironic because many of our readers who responded “no” seemed to think otherwise!
“My Heart Would Say “Go!” But My Head Would Say “No!”
Even though over half of the readers would choose to go to Disney World when it reopens, a large portion of you said you’d be too worried to hurry back right away.
Crowds are a Concern
Many of you felt the parks would be overcrowded when they reopened, flooded with people needing an escape from the reality we’ve all been dealing with.
Some of you also predicted Annual Passholders might be especially anxious to get back in and use their passes that have been burning a hole in their pockets!
Click here to see the updated refund and extension options for Disney World Annual Passholders here!
We’ll Go Eventually, But We Want To Wait And See
We heard from a lot of readers that although they wouldn’t necessarily go “right away,” they would probably feel better about going a week or two after the parks reopened to see how things played out first.
Travel Concerns and Exposure To Others Are An Issue
A large portion of our “no” people even said while they thought the Disney parks themselves would be safe and clean, they were more worried about getting exposed to something on an airplane.
One of our readers even said, “I don’t think I’ll be comfortable in crowds ever again.” Another reader wrote, “I don’t think it’ll be normal right away and will feel weird.”
Some of you were concerned about being too close to other people while waiting in lines. Sometimes folks are “herded” or “packed into” confined spaces by Cast Members for rides like the Haunted Mansion or before performances start. We anticipate Disney will have have to change some of the ways they operate for many people to feel truly safe again.
Disney May Have Phased or Limited Capacity Openings, And Budget Might Be An Issue
Other readers speculated the parks might not open fully, at least not right away, and that an expensive trip to Disney World isn’t in the budget — especially without being able to experience everything as it normally is.
With a recession on the heels of an already difficult economic situation for many, the thought of dropping thousands of dollars on a vacation where you can’t ride certain rides or go to restaurants normally seems ridiculous. This may or may not happen, but it’s definitely something our readers are taking into consideration as they make their decisions about returning to the parks.
What Will People Think?
A reader even commented that they felt there might be a stigma associated with going to the parks too soon if the general population was still fearful of large public gatherings. I think this is an especially interesting consideration, as we’ve seen how social psychology has played out so far throughout this crisis.
“It Depends on the State of the Pandemic.”
And while only 8% of you answered maybe, it’s clear to us that many people are assessing this situation day-by-day. Some of you folks at home didn’t feel comfortable saying one way or another, because Disney hasn’t given us a timeframe for when the parks will be reopening. They’re just closed “until further notice” which means until they’re fully comfortable opening the parks. Which could be weeks or possibly several months.
What we DO know is they’ve just furloughed all of their non-essential Cast Members, which means they’re anticipating a rather lengthy closure. Also, Disney World Resort hotels aren’t accepting new reservations until after June 1st, which may be an indication of when they anticipate being able to reopen in some capacity.
Some of you thought there might even be a vaccine available by the time the parks reopen and if so, that would make you feel very safe.
We, along with many of you, assume that Disney will be continuing to follow the recommendations of the CDC as well as the advice of local and federal government officials — opening parks only when it is safe and “legal” for them to do so.
But know that YOUR perspective affects Disney’s decisions as well. Crowd mentality is a HUGE component of marketing decisions for all major companies, so how you react will play into the future of the parks in a big way.
As for us, we’re certainly excited to see Disney World again; but we’re also anxious to see how they’ll be keeping guests (and our staff here at DFB!) safe when they reopen.
But we want to know in the comments — what do YOU think? Will you be first in line in at the gates on reopening day? Or will you plan to wait and see for a few days, weeks, or even months, before you return to the Most Magical Place on Earth? Let us know!
If your trip was impacted by the closures, click here for more information on rebooking or canceling your visit to Disney World — we have a step-by-step guide for ya!
Missed your chance to cast your vote? Tell us if you’d feel comfortable going to Disney World the first day it reopens in the comments below and why!