Disneyland Paris will begin a ‘gradual’ re-opening on July 15, the resort announced today.
The theme park has been closed since March because of the coronavirus pandemic but will re-open next month with limits on visitor numbers and compulsory mask-wearing for guests aged 11 or over.
No tickets will be sold on site, meaning that tourists will have to choose a date and register in advance – while many of the usual shows will be cancelled.
Social distancing means that children will be banned from hugging their favourite Disney characters, although the entertainers will still be at the park.
Britons arriving in France currently face 14 days of self-isolation in retaliation for the UK’s own quarantine rules, although there are talks about a possible ‘air bridge’ which would avoid that requirement.
Disneyland Paris will begin a ‘gradual’ re-opening on July 15, it was announced today (file photo)
Disneyland says it will offer a limited number of tickets each day in order to maintain social distancing when the park re-opens.
Guests will have to choose a date on an online registration system and even annual pass holders are urged to book a specific slot.
More than 2,000 sanitising and hand washing stations will be available throughout the resort, Disneyland said in its announcement today.
These will be located at the entrance and exit to each ride as well as at restaurants and theatres.
Guests aged 11 or over will have to wear face coverings ‘at all times except when eating’, with the same rule applying to staff.
Cancelled shows include Disney Stars On Parade and Disney Illuminations Night Time Spectacular, which will return ‘at a later date’.
Playgrounds and ‘character meet and greets’ will be unavailable and ‘close interactions including hugs will be temporarily suspended’, staff said today.
However, entertainers playing characters from Disney, Pixar and Star Wars films will still be at the park for photo opportunities.
The Newport Bay Club hotel will also open on July 15 followed by the Hotel Cheyenne on July 20, but other hotels will stay closed for longer.
The Hotel Santa Fe will re-open on August 3, while the Disneyland Hotel will stay shut until September 7 and the Sequoia Lodge Hotel and Davy Crocket Ranch will not open this summer.
No tickets will be sold on site, meaning that tourists will have to choose a date and register in advance – while many of the usual shows will be cancelled (file photo)
Disneyland shut its doors on March 12, after initially staying open despite one of its maintenance workers testing positive.
Hong Kong’s Disneyland re-opened last week, again with limited visitor numbers and social distancing measures in queues.
Walt Disney World Resort in Florida will start to re-open on July 11, while Disneyland Park in California will start re-opening its theme parks on July 17.
‘All of us at Disneyland Paris are excited to be on the path to reopening over the next few weeks,’ said the resort’s president Natacha Rafalski.
‘Making magic means even more, as we reflect on the resilience of our Cast Members and community, the enthusiasm of our guests and fans, and the positive momentum of many reopenings in the tourism industry across Europe.
‘We are looking forward to the return of our Cast Members and reopening our gates for guests to once again enjoy.’
Sophie Huberson, executive director of leisure industry group SNELAC, said it was an ‘important milestone for the tourism and leisure industry in France’.
‘We are thrilled to see one of the main tourism destinations in Europe and largest single site employer in France reopen to guests and its employees,’ she said.
The UK Foreign Office still advises Britons against all unnecessary foreign travel, a warning which will invalidate most travel insurance policies if it is ignored.
Even once it is lifted, Britain’s two-week quarantine rule has prompted France to impose the same measure on arrivals from the UK.
Proposals for ‘air bridges’ with certain countries have been in the pipeline for some time but no finalised plans have been announced yet.
Spain has already begun ‘freely’ welcoming Britons without the need to quarantine in a call for the UK to reciprocate and form a ‘bridge’.