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News Disney to relax mask policy at Walt Disney World theme parks

wdwmagic

Administrator
Moderator
Original Poster
Let’s not forget, the CDC has already said vaccinated adults and their unvaccinated children can be out and about without masks. Disney can remove the outdoor mask mandate and tell people to still distance and stay in groups of no more than x people (8 people? 3 family groups? Their choice. Latter most likely) and be in line with CDC policy, FL state law, and (soon) Orange County guidance.

Indoors will take longer.
Yes I think this is very likely the way they will go. Will be interesting to see if Uni, Sea World and Disney can coordinate on this and make it standard practice across the Central Florida parks.
 

GaBoy

Well-Known Member
Which may lead them to move more slowly. I doubt they will change rules overnight. I suspect at least a few weeks notice to recondition guest expectations. For all the talk about people avoiding the parks because of the mandates, my suspicion is at least (and likely far more) came to the parks *because* of the mandates and protocols.

We have all spent a lot of time armchair health policying Disney, but I would guess they know exactly where the market (or at least the share they want) is at on COVID protocols.
Absolutely. My useless predictions have nothing to do with timing. Its just my reasoning that when it happens, it won't be as incremental as the baby steps so far.
 

MansionButler84

Well-Known Member
Yes I think this is very likely the way they will go. Will be interesting to see if Uni, Sea World and Disney can coordinate on this and make it standard practice across the Central Florida parks.
I hope so. I can’t see them discriminating against children. Shame on Hersheypark. Not impressed.

Of course, even last summer, kids weren’t wearing masks outside of queues there. Apparently it is too much to expect places to have rules and enforce them.
 

crawale

Well-Known Member
Let’s not forget, the CDC has already said vaccinated adults and their unvaccinated children can be out and about without masks. Disney can remove the outdoor mask mandate and tell people to still distance and stay in groups of no more than x people (8 people? 3 family groups? Their choice. Latter most likely) and be in line with CDC policy, FL state law, and (soon) Orange County guidance.

Indoors will take longer.
Suppose a person has survived COVID and has anti bodies? They cannot be vaccinated for 90 days and probably don't need to be. Since the purpose of the vaccine is to give you anti bodies then the CDC needs to include people who have had COVID as not needing masks. Now I ask why should the people who have neither had COVID nor been vaccinated control the lives of others? Please let us use some common sense and just get rid of the masks unless a person wants to wear them.
 

MansionButler84

Well-Known Member
Suppose a person has survived COVID and has anti bodies? They cannot be vaccinated for 90 days and probably don't need to be. Since the purpose of the vaccine is to give you anti bodies then the CDC needs to include people who have had COVID as not needing masks. Now I ask why should the people who have neither had COVID nor been vaccinated control the lives of others? Please let us use some common sense and just get rid of the masks unless a person wants to wear them.
Let’s avoid this rabbit hole as it has no impact on WDW park management. If we aren’t checking vaccine passports, we aren’t checking antibody titer. You and I both know, in practice, yesterday’s announcement will lead to no one over 12 feeling compelled to mask up. It will be a personal choice. And this fact will force the CDC’s hand with respect to children very quickly. Punishing children doesn’t win elections.

We just need to wait as the dominos fall.
 

Chomama

Well-Known Member
I really hope Disney drops outdoor masks, as it is safe for everyone to be outside without them. And then I hope we wait until we have higher vaccine update among 12+ to help cover younger kids and medically vulnerable. Once community spread is very low it won’t matter one way or the other. And then open flying fish, ohana, and some shows. :)
 

MisterPenguin

Fully Pfizered!
Premium Member
Suppose a person has survived COVID and has anti bodies? They cannot be vaccinated for 90 days and probably don't need to be. Since the purpose of the vaccine is to give you anti bodies then the CDC needs to include people who have had COVID as not needing masks. Now I ask why should the people who have neither had COVID nor been vaccinated control the lives of others? Please let us use some common sense and just get rid of the masks unless a person wants to wear them.
The 90 day wait is only for those who were treated with antibodies or monoclonal plasma.
 

GhostHost1000

Premium Member
I really hope Disney drops outdoor masks, as it is safe for everyone to be outside without them. And then I hope we wait until we have higher vaccine update among 12+ to help cover younger kids and medically vulnerable. Once community spread is very low it won’t matter one way or the other. And then open flying fish, ohana, and some shows. :)
No reason they shouldn’t open ohana this summer
 

Dranth

Active Member
Disney has some significant barriers to returning to normal.

Staffing is a massive problem right now. They simply do not have the number of CMs to increase capacity and extend hours. College Program restart will help, but will take a while to ramp up. Bus drivers are critically short. Not enough trainers, and not enough drivers. It is a double whammy.

Union agreements will cause significant issues - the reopening agreements were made with mask requirements in place. Unions are going to need to sign off on those.

Disney are also greatly concerned about public perception and how no masks and distancing leaves those unable to get vaccinated - under 12s.

Sea World and Uni do not have these problems so can pretty much flip the switch overnight. Disney cannot.
Understood and I don’t expect them to come out tomorrow and say no more masks. I figured they would go the no mask outdoors route sometime in the next month or so and keep them required inside for much of the rest of the year. Policing who is vaccinated or not will be impossible so it makes the most sense.

However, for better or worse, the recent CDC update and subsequent comments from Bob during the earnings call put us in the end game phase of this whole pandemic mentally, if not physically in the US and specifically WDW. As restrictions lift and capacity increases the expectations change and increase as well. If they don’t keep up with those expectations it is going to cause them a lot of problems.

I also wonder how much we have changed. For example, I think all of us want to go back to a fully functioning WDW with all the experiences, shows etc. but is that still true when you think about the type of crowds we had been seeing pre COVID? I imagine people are going to feel much more uncomfortable than they think the first time another couple of families cram in next to them to watch fireworks or a parade. Humans are pretty good at adapting but it still takes time. All the more reason for them to slowly roll out changes and capacity increases but how long are they going to hold the flood gates?
 
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Chi84

Premium Member
I really hope Disney drops outdoor masks, as it is safe for everyone to be outside without them. And then I hope we wait until we have higher vaccine update among 12+ to help cover younger kids and medically vulnerable. Once community spread is very low it won’t matter one way or the other. And then open flying fish, ohana, and some shows. :)
I could be wrong, but I believe the requirement of outdoor masks will be dropped for everyone very soon. The CDC data does not support outdoor transmission regardless of vaccination status. I think the only reason it wasn't done yesterday is that the administration wanted to push the vaccines by making a big deal of the fact that the vaccines are so highly effective that the vaccinated can go back to normal. I hope it works.
 

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