The face mask policy has changed several times at Disney World since the beginning of the global pandemic, and today, it has changed again.
When Disney World first reopened, face masks were required everywhere and for everyone unless you were eating or drinking while stationary. Then, things shifted to face masks only being required indoors. Masks were briefly removed completely for vaccinated guests (except on transportation), but the indoor requirement was quickly reinstated as case numbers went up in the summer of 2021. Now, Disney World (and Disneyland) has switched things up once again.
Disney World announced earlier this week that they would no longer be requiring face masks indoors for vaccinated guests, except for on enclosed transportation. This new policy has gone into effect starting today.
Masks are optional for fully vaccinated guests indoors and outdoors. Disney’s policy does say that they “expect Guests who are not fully vaccinated to continue wearing face coverings in all indoor locations.“ Masks remain optional for everyone outdoors.
Mask language reflecting this change has been updated on Disney World’s website. It also mentions that face masks ARE still required by ALL guests (ages 2 and up) on enclosed Disney transportation like buses, the Monorail, and the Skyliner.
The chart that has been used to more clearly understand where and when you should wear a face mask in Disney World has also been updated.
We noticed today in the parks that the signage saying face masks are required indoors has been removed from the doors leading into stores. We first saw that the sign was gone at The Darkroom in Hollywood Studios…
…then we saw the change at Island Mercantile in Animal Kingdom.
In the stores, we saw some guests still wearing masks and others without masks.
We also saw a number of Cast Members with masks on, though some did not have masks on.
Note that face masks are required inside of the First Aid locations within the parks, regardless of vaccination status. We had seen this specified for Disneyland under their updated mask policy, but it was not specifically included in Disney World’s policy from what we saw online. Still, we saw signs outside of the first aid section in Magic Kingdom indicating that masks ARE required there, so be sure to check those signs before heading inside.
The Centers for Disease Prevention and Control recommends that even those who are up to date on their COVID-19 vaccines (meaning you have received all recommended COVID-19 vaccine doses, including booster doses, when eligible) should wear a mask indoors in places where there is high or substantial transmission.
Note that both Orange County and Osceola County, Florida (the counties where Disney World is located) are in the “high” category when it comes to community transmission of COVID-19, according to the CDC. This means the CDC DOES recommend that everyone wears a mask in public, indoor settings in these counties.
The CDC also recommends that people who are 2-years-old or older that aren’t up to date with their COVID-19 vaccines wear a mask indoors in public.
The situation with COVID-19 in Florida (and around the world) is continuously changing. Florida recently fell as low as 37th on the list of states in the U.S. where COVID-19 is spreading the fastest. But, on February 14th, 2022, the Palm Beach Post reported that Florida was ranked 8th among the states in the U.S. where COVID-19 is spreading the fastest, based on data from Johns Hopkins University.
Stay tuned to DFB for more news and updates.