Walt Disney World updates mask policy with new exception

Photo from Walt Disney World

Heads up! You will want to know about this change to the mask policy at Walt Disney World before your next visit.

According to the Walt Disney World website, face coverings are required for all guests two years of age or older. Cast members must also wear masks, even if they are vaccinated. They must be worn at all times, except when dining or swimming.

However, the theme park company now says that you may temporarily remove your face covering while actively eating, drinking, or taking an outdoor photo. However, you must be stationary and maintain appropriate physical distancing.

This new policy will begin on Thursday, April 8th. 

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As always, the face coverings must:

  • Be made with at least two layers of breathable material
  • Fully cover the nose and mouth and secure under the chin
  • Fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face
  • Be secured with ties or ear loops and allow the guest to remain hands-free

Face coverings like neck gaiters, open-chin triangle bandanas, and face coverings with valves, mesh material, or holes are not allowed.

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Walt Disney World will follow COVID-19 safety protocols well into the future.

According to the Walt Disney World reservation system online, reservations to visit the parks can be made through January 14th, 2023. This indicates that the theme park company will still be using its reservation system at least until that date.

In addition, during an earnings call earlier this year, Disney CEO Bob Chapek said that he anticipates coronavirus precautions -- like wearing masks, temperature checks at the entrance of the parks, and social distancing -- will last through 2021.

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However, precautions could ease some in 2022.

"We have no doubt that when we reopen up in parks that were closed, or increase capacity, that that we will have some level of social distancing and mask-wearing for the remainder of this year. That is our expectation," he said.

Officials also said that even if you get the COVID-19 vaccine, you will still have to wear a face covering when visiting the parks. 

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