U.S. Disney Parks will soon be welcoming international guests again. Read on for details on how crowds my be impacted.
Disneyland’s International Guests
Disney World and Disneyland usually see lots of international visitors. But both parks have had very few visitors from outside the US since reopening. Now, the U.S. will allow some international guests to visit the states. How much impact do international guests have on park crowds?
According to Visit California, prior to the pandemic international guests accounted for about 12% of tourism spending in Anaheim California, and 33% in Orange County as a whole. Orange County welcomed 4.6 million international travelers in 2019. California visitors statewide brought 28 billion dollars in tourism revenue that same year.
Visit Anaheim’s Chief Sales officer issued a statement on on the importance of international guests to the region’s economic recovery:
Home to world-class theme parks and shopping, Anaheim and Orange County will continue to be a strong draw for international visitorsJunior Tauvaa, Chief Sales Officer Visit Anaheim
The Orange County Register reports that Disneyland and Disney California Adventure were on the top of the list in a September survey of prospective international guests conducted by Visit California.
The percentage of international visitors by country planning to visit Anaheim in the next 12 months: Mexico (52%), China (38%), Canada (26%), France (21%) and United Kingdom (20%).Visit California Survey
Pent up demand for leisure travel will likely impact Disneyland. A top destination for many international guests, they are also interested in outdoor activities where they feel safer in terms of Covid-19 transmission.
Disneyland currently controls crowd levels with park reservations, like Disney World. But with only two parks, it’s tougher to space guests out and may feel a little more crowded.
Walt Disney World
Over in Florida, Walt Disney World is preparing to welcome international guests again soon!
According to Visit Orlando, international guests account for 6 billion in spending in Orlando. Tourism tax collection this year was down $3.5 million compared to 2019, and some of that may be fewer international guests.
Visit Orlando will have ad campaigns running in the UK, Canada and Mexico urging visitors to come to Orlando. They, too, are looking to cash in on global pent up travel demand.
Disney World Crowds
There are certain times of the year where Disney World sees more international guests than others. Visitors from the United Kingdom often come in August when most of the US is back in school. My (Rebecca) family travels to Disney at the end of August most years, and we chat with a lot of British guests! We missed them this year for sure!
Disney World will continue to use park pass reservations. But we may see an increase in tourist groups again, particularly over holidays and spring break.
I’m excited everyone can get to traveling again soon! Welcome, foolish (international) mortals!
What do you think? Does the opening of international travel to the US impact your family? Let us know in the comments below and on Facebook.
-Rebecca W Davis