Updated: Aug 20
If you have not planned a Walt Disney World vacation within the last couple years, there are lots of changes you need to be aware of. Several modifications are a result of Covid, but others are just general changes that Disney has implemented to create better experiences for their guests.
Here are the Top 10 recent changes you need to know when planning a successful Walt Disney World Resort vacation.
Park reservations are now required to enter the theme parks
Once you purchase your tickets, you will have to decide which theme parks you want to visit on each date of your trip and make reservations for each park.
FastPass has been discontinued
Disney replaced FastPass in 2021 with a brand new system that helps guests to skip the long lines.
Characters may be unable to sign autographs or interact closely with guests
This change has been enforced due to Covid safety; however, there are creative ways you can now interact with the Disney characters and take photos with them.
Disney dining plans are suspended indefinitely
Disney has announced the Disney dining plans will be returning at some point, but we don’t know if they will feature the same components as they did pre-Covid.
Disney dining reservations can no longer be made so far in advance
Disney has shortened their 180-day window, so you can now make reservations for table service restaurants and character dining experiences closer to your travel dates.
Privileges for Extra Magic Hours have changed
Disney resort guests may still take advantage of morning extra magic hours in the parks, but Disney has shortened that length of time.
Plus, guests staying at select Walt Disney World resorts will also have access to extended evening hours that will last 2 hours after the official park closing time.
If you have park hopper tickets, you cannot visit another park anytime you want
If you want to visit multiple parks on the same day, you will have to wait until a specific time of day to park hop.
Magic Bands are no longer complimentary for Disney resort guests
If you don’t have a working Magic Band from a previous trip, you can purchase a new one or utilize another method to enter the parks and redeem your reservations.
Some experiences, events and tours are still suspended due to Covid
Disney is being conscientious about when to resume all these experiences in an effort to keep their guests safe.
Many quick service restaurants will only serve you if you place a mobile order in advance
Since specific pick-up times are limited at quick service locations, you might be out of luck if you plan to just walk up and expect your food to be prepared right away.
It's safe to say that Walt Disney World Resort always seems to keep us on our toes when it comes to new and changing experiences. When you add Covid-19 into the mix, it's important to be aware of how Disney is making modifications to promote safety and wellness for its guests throughout all its resorts and theme parks.
Walt Disney World Resort vacation.
Want to know what new experiences Disney fans are excited about? Also, check out the Top 5 things Disney Parks guests couldn't wait to experience in 2021.
Lissa Ryan is a Senior Travel Advisor with Kingdom Destinations specializing in luxurious family vacations. Lissa helps busy parents who want to create travel memories with their families through luxury travel experiences, but are too busy or overwhelmed with all the effort and research that is required to plan that perfect vacation.