Disney recently shared their reopening plans, with opening dates for Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom on July 11, and Epcot and Hollywood Studios on July 15. The plans discuss a phased reopening for the parks, including limited capacity for the parks.
In addition to limited capacity there was mention of focusing on mobile ordering. This is probably a way for them to keep lines down, however there really wasn’t any mention of the table service restaurants. Well, last night Disney released a statement saying they would be cancelling all existing dining reservations and experience bookings (this includes the Disney Dining Plan). They explained that they will reopen bookings for dining and experiences with more limited numbers closer to when the parks reopen. In addition, they are moving the dining reservation booking window from 180 days to 60 days.
Dining reservations are not the only cancellations happening. Disney will also be suspending the FastPass+ service for now. They are going to use that space to help manage the lines for attractions to help keep physical distancing possible. Disney also stated that Extra Magic Hours will not be offered when the parks first reopen. Not sure how long that will last, but hopefully Disney will release more details soon.
As previously reported, new ticket sales and hotel reservations are also temporarily suspended. Disney will be focusing on guests with existing reservations and tickets and will be contacting them about the new theme park reservation system. This new system requires guests to reserve a spot in the theme parks in advance. They have not released any more information about this new system, but hopefully we will hear something from them soon.
Disney is reaching out to guests affected by these new procedures. They stated they will discuss options, included refunds, with guests who wish to cancel their upcoming reservations.
Sample Letter Disney is Sending to Guests
If you have reservations later in the year you probably haven’t heard from Disney yet. I have clients with reservations later this fall and as of last night their dining reservations were still showing. ETA: I’m hearing from people who have reservations later in the fall that they have gotten the emails, so I’m not sure how Disney is picking and choosing who to cancel first. Either way, they are cancelling all dining reservations for the remainder of the year.
If you booked the free dining offer because of the park closures it sounds like Disney is offering a discount on a booking for a later date. So make sure to ask about any discounts when you call to cancel or rebook.
Have you received a letter from Disney about your dining and FastPass+ reservations?
Thanks for reading!