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After yearlong COVID lockdown, Disneyland reopens — but with a catch

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Disney fans, rejoice!

After being shuttered since last March over COVID-19 concerns, Anaheim’s Disneyland is finally reopening its doors to the public Friday.

Unfortunately, Disney die-hards in New York and elsewhere shouldn’t book tickets just yet: The Happiest Place on Earth is limiting access to California residents, ignoring state guidelines permitting theme parks to accept out-of-state visitors provided that they’ve been vaccinated, LAist reported.

They will also be capping park capacity at 25% and limiting groups to no larger than three households.

And while the park will operate at a reduced admittance, fans are reportedly clamoring to visit the House of Mouse once again.

Disneyland is back after a yearlong COVID lockdown.
Disneyland is back after a yearlong COVID lockdown.
AP

“People are tired of being cooped up, not going on vacation,” Greg Antonelle, a representative for Disney-booking agency Mickey Travels, told the New York Times.  

In order to keep a lid on the number of visitors, Disneyland is requiring guests to make both a park pass reservation and a ticket purchase in order to enter its two parks, Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure Park.

Other expected precautions include face masks for both visitors and staffers, temperature checks upon entry and hand-sanitizer stations throughout the park.

a woman with a face mask waits to cross the street outside Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, Calif. Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure park will reopen to visitors on Friday, April 30, 2021.
A woman with a face mask waits to cross the street outside Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, California. Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure will reopen to visitors on Friday, April 30, 2021.
AP

COVID protocols will apply to the rides as well, where visitors from different households will be separated from each other by at least one seat or empty row. It’s unclear if they’ll permit screaming on the attractions.

Disney hasn’t disclosed when it will ease coronavirus restrictions in the wake of the pandemic. However, California Gov. Gavin Newsom plans to lift most COVID-19 mandates by June 15, provided there are ample vaccines available for Californians 16 years and older and hospitalizations remain low, according to LAist.

Disneyland had been closed since March 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Disneyland had been closed since March 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Los Angeles Times via Getty Imag

Here’s hoping that the reopening will allow Walt Disney’s oldest theme park to recuperate some of its lockdown-induced losses, which totaled a mind-boggling $2.6 billion in the Parks, Experiences and Products division, Forbes reported.

Meanwhile, Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida, is reportedly experiencing high visitor volume after reopening to guests — also at a reduced capacity — a staggering nine months ago.

Nonetheless, out-of-town fans are reportedly wishing upon a star for the original to reopen its pearly gates.

“I have a file filled with families waiting for Disneyland to open up to non-California residents,” Staci Kimball, a senior adviser with Disney-focused agency Glass Slipper Concierge, told the Times. “They know they can go to Walt Disney World, but there’s so much nostalgia for the original park.”

Disney land will be operating at a limited capacity to adhere to state coronavirus mandates.
Disneyland will operate at a limited capacity to adhere to state coronavirus mandates.
Disneyland Resort via Getty Imag

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