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Is Disney Planning to Reopen in August?

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Is Disney Planning to Reopen in August?

We may have just been given a clue that tells us when the parks may reopen.

The parks being closed “indefinitely” does not help us planners who are anxiously awaiting news of a reopening timeframe so we can continue with our travel plans.

You may remember the Cultural Representative program was recently suspended and Disney was working with participants to get them back home. You can read full details in our article HERE.

With this advanced notice, we are working with the participants in our Cultural Representative Program to help them return home by April 17. We will work with them on a case-by-case basis to help make travel arrangements. These participants will continue to be paid through April 18 and will receive a lump sum payment on April 9. In addition, Disney Program housing deductions will be waived immediately.

Now, just a few days later, applications for two countries in the program have opened up. And this is where we may have been given a clue!

Norway and Germany

Both Norway and Germany Pavilions in Epcot’s World Showcase are currently accepting applications for the Cultural Representative program.

Job Description (per Disney Careers):

The Cultural Representative Program is a twelve-month work experience located at Walt Disney World® Resort, near Orlando, Florida. Participants have the opportunity to share the unique culture and customs of their country with Guests, while working different front line, guest facing roles. Participants must authentically represent one of the countries or regions we have recreated in look and feel at the Walt Disney World Resort.

Basic Qualifications:

  • Speak English fluently.
  • Be at least 18 years of age to apply.
  • Be able to authentically represent Norway/Germany.
  • Be receptive to Disney LookLink opens in new window guidelines.
  • Be fully available to work Sunday through Saturday, including days and nights, holidays and overtime.

Disney is accepting applications for positions that will start between August and November 2020.

Does this mean Disney doesn’t plan to reopen until August? Well, we can’t be sure. Right now, new reservations are being accepted for June 1 and beyond. However, this timeframe does match furlough dates that some Cast Members have been given.

It could also mean Disney does not plan to operate at full capacity immediately after reopening. We have written about a modified park experience, and Bob Iger also recently commented that certain screenings may take place once the parks reopen.

It’s also possible Disney is being careful about bringing Cast Members (especially from overseas) back to Disney parks too soon. It would be very unfortunate to hire them for a planned early summer reopening only to have to send them back if the parks don’t actually open.

There are many variables that come into play regarding park reopening. It will be near impossible to say, “Ok, it’s safe to reopen. Everything will go back to normal at full capacity.”

What do you make given all the information? Do you think the applications for the Cultural Representative Program are a good indication that Disney will not be operating at all or maybe just at a lower capacity? Share your thoughts with us on facebook.




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7 COMMENTS

  1. There are so many people saying oh yeah Disney will be open May or June. Yeah thats not gonna happen. You will be lucky if it opens this year. Im a big Disney fan but I sure dont wanna go during a pandemic! Its a germy place year round but especially now. I dont understand why yall are getting defensive when people say Disney wont be open by June. WHY WOULD YOU WANT TO START THE SPREAD ALL OVER AGAIN AND RISK YOUR LIVES AND EVERYONE ELSES?

  2. I think it’s extremely naive to believe any US Disney park will reopen in May. Disney is having a hard time managing all of the cancellations and rebookings and may be encouraging guests not to cancel, merely to slow the mass exodus. A good indication that the parks will not reopen in May is the fact that they’re offering free cancellations to everyone for bookings through May 30th, plus free dining plans if you rebook to return by September 30. If there was any chance the parks would reopen before May 30th, why on earth would they offer that timeframe? Whoever is being told not to cancel their May plans is being advised by an overly optimistic cast member and not someone based in reality on the current situation. Look at Disney throughout Asia and Europe to find clues as to how Disney is responding to the pandemic. Covid-19 first broke out in China and that country claims to be back to normal operations for the most part (supposedly), yet Disney has not reopened their parks. Shanghai Disneyland had a soft reopening on March 9th for a hotel, some restaurants and certain shops with limited hours. That was one month ago and there is still no indication when the park will reopen. It remains closed “indefinitely”. The Hong Kong location remains completely closed. Not even a soft opening yet. The truth is, we’re all speculating and no one knows for sure, but I think looking at China is a good indication of what may occur here. It’s probable that Disney World “hopes” to reopen a few hotels with limited capacity and a portion of Disney Springs sometime in June. I’m hoping they will begin to open a couple parks by the beginning of July (or sooner) and be open fully operational by August 1. That may be wishful thinking, but only time will tell. I, for one, sure hope so! Our family had planned a Disney World vacation from March 20-27, 2020. When it was cancelled, we rebooked to July 17-24, thinking that was plenty of time. Now, a few days ago, I rescheduled the trip again to August 1-8, because I’m becoming less confident about a July reopening as time goes on. If I could, I would delay our trip to even later in August, but we can’t due to other conflicts. We were devastated when our spring break trip was cancelled last minute. Our kids were virtually inconsolable. But, now, we are hoping and praying everything is fully operational by August 1st, but we have our doubts. : (

  3. MDE app shows parks closed early May. Unlikely they will open before August. I think Disney doesn’t want to let everyone know it is really a 6 month shutdown for fear of overcrowding the phone lines.

  4. No. Epcot is reopenng in August. The other parks will open by June1. I believe there will be a slow opening starting in May based on the fact that people with current May reservations have called into the Reservations center and have been advised NOT to change their reservations.

What do you think?

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