10 Most Common Q&A During Walt Disney World Phased Reopening

Walt Disney World reopened to the public back in July with new safety protocols in place to help keep guests and cast members safe.  Part of Disney’s reopening process is a phased reopening meaning some experiences aren’t exactly like they were previously.  We have the 10 most commonly asked questions and answers regarding this phased reopening to help you better prepare for a trip to Walt Disney World.


1. Who Has to Wear Masks?

Disney’s current policy is that all guests ages two and older are required to wear a mask at all times unless stationary and eating/drinking, in a relaxation zone, or while taking outdoor photos.  This means that even your little one will be required to wear a mask while visiting the four theme parks, Disney Springs or being around their resort.  Always check Disney’s website for the most up-to-date information regarding masks policies.

2. What Happens If My Temperature is Too High?

NOTE: Disney has announced they will be phasing out temperature screenings for guests beginning May 16. See details here.

Right now, Disney is taking temperatures of guests prior to entering the parks and Disney Springs.  Guests need to have a temperature of lower than 100.4 in order to enter.  If someone in your party does have a temperature that is considered too high, they will be allowed to head to a cool down area.  From here, guests can relax, have some water and allow the body to cool down.  They then will have their temperature taken again (up to three times); however, if it continues to remain high, the whole party will not be allowed to enter that day.  Keep this in mind when heading to the parks during those hotter days.  Give yourself some time to cool down or even consider bringing your own thermometer to use prior to leaving the resort.

3. What If I Get Sick Right Before Our Trip?

Something we have always worried about is what happens if we get sick prior to heading down to Walt Disney World.  When booking your trip, make sure you know your cancelations options. Disney recently ended their flexible cancelation policy, so you’ll want to understand your cancelation options prior to booking. If you do get sick before your vacation, make sure to communicate with Disney and cancel or adjust your plans as needed. 

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4. What If I Get Sick at Disney?

This is a big concern for many right now.  What happens if you or someone in your party gets sick while in Disney?  First of all, rest assured that you won’t be the first or last one to get sick while visiting.  Disney has policies in place to help guests who are sick from COVID-19 or from a sinus infection and everything in between.  There are quick care clinics in the area Disney can help with, pharmacies that can deliver as well as testing sites.  Illness on vacation isn’t fun and during these unprecedented times it can be even more stressful, but know that Disney will be there to help you figure out what to do and what resources are available to you.

5. What is park passes?

Part of Disney’s reopening is the introduction of the park pass reservation system.  Guests who wish to visit one of the four theme parks need to have an active ticket and make a park pass reservation through the My Disney Experience website.  These park passes are available throughout 2021 and can be made as soon as a ticket is purchased (either through a package or separately).  Guests choose which of the four parks they wish to visit on each ticket day.  This can often be changed; however, it is always good to double check the reservation calendar to make sure there is availability.  Times such as the 50th anniversary are already booked up.

6. What Precautions Is Disney Taking to Keep Us Safe?

Disney has taken many different measures to keep guests safe when returning to the magic.  To start, parks are at a limited capacity allowing for physical distancing throughout the rides, shows and dining locations.  As mentioned before, masks are required in order to enter the park.  Disney also takes time to clean and sanitize the ride vehicles throughout the day and provides hand sanitizer and hand washing stations throughout the park for easy access.  These are just a few of the ways that Disney is working to keep guests safe as they travel to the magic.

7. How Can I See My Favorite Characters?

Characters are still out and spreading magic throughout the four theme parks!  Even though you can do a one-on-one meet and greet with Mickey, you can still see him at the parks in the cavalcades or in pop-up times such as at the train station on Main Street USA.  Keep your eyes and ears opened while you are at the parks because characters show up randomly and provide a great deal of surprise magic when they do.  You can also consider booking a dining reservation at some of the character dining options that are opened.  Although these are modified as well, it is a great way to see the characters and enjoy a meal.  Garden Grill, Chef Mickey’s, Topolino’s all offer options to see the characters right now.

Topolino’s Terrace Breakfast

8. Is Everything Opened?

Disney is still in a phased reopening meaning not all dining and experiences are opened currently.  Those evening shows like Fantasmic or the night time fireworks aren’t happening; however, that doesn’t mean that the experience is any less than.  Disney is still doing an amazing job of providing guests with a magical and once in a lifetime experience even with some things not running.  If you have your heart set on a dining experience or entertainment option, double check the website to see what is opened during your vacation.

9. Have Rides Been Adjusted Because of Safety Measure?

There are a few rides and experiences that have been slightly modified to help with safety measures.  In Test Track, guests no longer create their own car and in the Haunted Mansion guests aren’t stopped in the stretching room.  Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway doesn’t have the pre-show right now either.  These small changes prevent large groups from gathering and keeps the lines moving into the actual ride.  Overall, we think the ride experiences are still just as amazing!

10. Is It Still Magical?

With so many changes, is Walt Disney World still magical?  The answer is 100% yes.  Even with masks, physical distancing, adjustments to rides and no evening shows Walt Disney World is still magical.  Being able to experience the parks is just as fun and exciting as before.  Those precious moments with your loved ones still happen and are just as wonderful.  Don’t think for a minute that the magic has been lost during this reopening- it definitely was back as soon as the parks opened up to guests.

We hope these questions and answers help you as you prepare to head down to Walt Disney World on your next vacation.

About Jennifer Retzlaff

My name is Jennifer Retzlaff and I became a lifelong Disney fan during my first trip to Walt Disney World in 6th grade. From that moment, Disney became a big part of my life. I live in Iowa with my husband and two kids who are growing up too quickly for my liking. I started introducing my love for Disney early to my family with a Disney honeymoon and then trips when our youngest of 18 months. Since then, our family has been to Walt Disney World over five times and we continue to plan and dream for the next trip. I love the magic that Disney brings to people through the theme parks, cruises, adventures and movies they create. As a teacher, I try to bring that magic into my classroom to help kids believe that “If You Can Dream It, You Can Do It.” I recently reached a dream of mine as I joined Magic Vacation Planner as a personal travel advisor. With this team, I can now help others plan magical vacations. As a passionate writer, I also have my own blog at magicalvacationsbyjen which is also where you can follow me on instagram for trip reviews along with tips and tricks for your next magical vacation.