In response the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and the surge in cases involving the Delta variant, Disney Parks announced that Walt Disney World and Disneyland will go back to enforcing mask wearing for cast members and guests over the age of 2. Masks will be required for all indoor activities including rides and attractions beginning Friday, July 30th. The Orange County Mayor's office and the CDC have recently requested businesses institute mask mandates in hopes of stopping the spread of the Delta variant that has quickly become the dominant strain of COVID-19 in many regions across the globe. Previously, vaccinated guests were allowed to go maskless in the parks except for during transportation on buses, the skyliner, and other vehicles. Read the official statement from Disney below:
"We are adapting our health and safety guidelines based on guidance from health and government officials, and will require Cast Members and Guests ages 2 and up, to wear face coverings in all indoor locations at Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland Resort beginning Friday, July 30, regardless of vaccination status. At Walt Disney World Resort, this includes upon entering and throughout all attractions and in enclosed transportation vehicles, including shuttles, buses, monorails and at Disney Skyliner,"
Some fans saw this news coming as Disney World and the other parks have been operating on the CDC's guidelines previously. Their policy has changed from what it was earlier in the week. Previously it read, "Face coverings are required for all Guests while in Disney buses, monorail and Disney Skyliner, they are now optional in most areas for Guests who are fully vaccinated. While we do not require proof of vaccination, we expect Guests who are not fully vaccinated to continue wearing face coverings in all indoor locations and upon entering and throughout all attractions and transportation except ferry boats."
In a previous conversation with CNBC, Disney Parks chairman Josh D'Amaro spoke about the concept of their new normal and efforts to serve all the guests.
"We are in a new normal right now, so what's happening outside of the gates of Walt Disney World is our new world," D'Amaro explained. "I think you know we were one of the first theme parks to close, and we'll be about the last to open. And we spent every minute of every day thinking about how to operate in this new normal that we're in.:
Will you be visiting Disney this year? Let us know in the comments!