If you think you can go a week without any big or unexpected Disney news, you’d be wrong.
Another week, another round of surprises straight from the most magical place on Earth! We’ve got some exciting announcements, big changes for Genie+, and several openings coming SOON. Are you ready for all this news?
Early Theme Park Entry Extended
In case you missed it, Early Theme Park Entry debuted in 2021 as a replacement for Extra Magic Hours. Instead of Disney World hotel guests getting an extra hour in select Disney Parks on certain days, Early Theme Park Entry designated an extra 30 minutes before park opening for qualifying hotel guests. We didn’t know if this would be a permanent or temporary offering, but this week Disney announced that Early Theme Park Entry would be extended through 2023.
If you qualify (and most Disney World Resort hotels do), you can enter any Disney Park 30 minutes before the official opening time. This is a daily offering, so there’s no schedule to check either! While it’s not an hour, 30 minutes can still give you a good early start to your day.
Disney’s paid FastPass replacement, Genie+, has only been around for a short time but it’s made a big impact on Disney Parks. Not everyone likes Genie+, but it’s one of the only ways to skip standby lines, and this week Disney announced a small but impactful change for Genie+.
Since Genie+ launched, guests could choose to purchase it day by day (beginning at midnight) or by adding it to their ticket purchase in advance. As of June 8th, however, Genie+ will only be purchasable on a daily basis. If you were hoping to use Genie+ on your trip, you will only be able to purchase it on the date of your visit.
Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique News
Although many Disney attractions, shows, and specialty spots have fully reopened since the COVID-19 closure, some places with high contact experiences have remained closed indefinitely. This week, however, the reopening timeline for Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique was finally announced! The magical transformation salon will reopen in 2022.
This applies to locations in Disney World AND Disneyland. We don’t yet know exactly WHEN in 2022 this reopening will take place, but since we’re almost halfway through 2022 it might not be as far away as you think! We’ll be watching Disney closely for an official opening date, so stay tuned.
Barber Shop Opening Date
Did you know you can get your hair cut in Disney World?? The iconic Harmony Barber Shop in Magic Kingdom is scheduled to reopen on July 31st, with reservations opening on June 28th! The style options will include a Child’s Haircut, an Adult Haircut, or you can opt for the “My First Haircut” for a magical experience for babies and toddlers.
Disney recommends making a reservation in advance but walk-in appointments may be accepted depending on availability. We don’t yet know what the cost of the cuts will be, but we’ll keep our eyes peeled for updated pricing.
Genie+ Change for Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure
As a recap, not every ride is included in the price of Genie+. The Lightning Lanes of some of the more popular and newer rides are only available for purchase individually via Individual Attraction Selection, which is essentially pay-per-ride. The fees can differ depending on the date and the ride, and up until now, Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure was a pay-per-ride option.
As of May 31st, Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure will be available through your Genie+ purchase! This is a limited-time change expected to last through August 7th, at which time Remy will be available as an Individual Lightning Lane again. Genie+ costs $15 per day, so if you’re visiting Disney World this summer you might want to consider it!
Virtual Queue News for Cosmic Rewind
And we finally got some virtual queue news for Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind! This highly anticipated indoor coaster is scheduled to open in EPCOT on May 27th and Disney will be utilizing a virtual queue system, so NO standby line will be available (for now).
If you’ve ever used the virtual queue for other Disney rides, it will work similarly for Cosmic Rewind. Guests can opt to join the virtual queue at 2 different times daily, first at 7AM and the second at 1PM. Alternatively, if you aren’t successful at getting in the virtual queue, you can also pay for the Lightning Lane for Cosmic Rewind.
2022 Food & Wine Festival News
Can you believe it’s almost time for the 2022 EPCOT Food & Wine Festival? Neither can we! The festival will begin on July 14th, and this week Disney announced all the upcoming food booths, part of the Eat to the Beat Concert line-up, and a BIG update to the famous cheese crawl, Emile’s Fromage Montage.
The brand new booth coming this year is called The Fry Basket, and Disney describes it as serving “crispy French fries or yucca fries, seasoned to perfection.” Sold! Also, Boyz II Men are returning to the concert series and we’re EXCITED.
And that’s all the surprising news from Disney World this week! Stay tuned to DFB for more Disney news and updates!
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Have you visited Disney World this week? Tell us in the comments!