Travel Tuesday: Is Disney Parks really suspending the park hopper option?

(Photo by Alex Menendez/Getty Images)
(Photo by Alex Menendez/Getty Images) /

As Disney Parks unveil reopening details, is the park hopper option gone?

Even though people have been making Magical Moments at home, Disney Parks eventual reopening is being met with much anticipation. As guests have adjusted to the health and safety measures at Disney Springs, the Disney theme park requirements will have additional parameters. If the park hopper option is off the table, will you delay your next Disney vacation?

A Disney Park visit is always a memorable event. Whether you snap a picture in front of Cinderella’s Castle or head to Galaxy’s Edge for the ultimate Star Wars experience, all that pixie dust makes any time spent in the parks feels special.

While the re-opening details for Disney Parks are starting to be revealed, a few aspects are having Disney fans wondering if they should postpone that upcoming vacation. For example, a reservation at a Disney hotel does not guarantee entrance into one of the theme parks. Would you want to spend all that money on a hotel room to only see Cinderella’s Castle from your hotel window?

One aspect that Disney fans have been pondering is the reservation system. Although full details have not been shared, it seems that guests will have to make a theme park reservation to gain entry into a park on a specific day. No reservation, no entrance.

Given that Disney Parks will need to limit crowd capacity, the reservation system makes sense. Who wants to be standing at the front gate only to be turned away? Not even Clark Griswold could get Disney security to sneak him past the rope drop.

Still, that reservation system brings up an interesting point. If you can only make a reservation at one park, for one day, doesn’t that mean that there is no park hopping?

Park hopping at Disney is a fun pastime. Some people love spending the morning at Animal Kingdom and enjoy dinner at Epcot. Or, with the new Skyliner, who hasn’t enjoyed going from lunch in Paris to drinks at Oga’s Catina. That ability to go from park to park is one of the special aspects to a Disney visit.

Still, with limited theme park capacity, the concept of park hopping isn’t possible. There is no way for Disney to regulate the number of guests if everyone is going from park to park.

While Disney seems to likely to halt the park to park experience, Universal Orlando does not have that limitation. During the recent opening guests can go from Universal Studios to Islands of Adventure without issue. It is unclear if Universal has an attendance cap combined on both parks or if the ability to go from park to park is weighed into their attendance guidelines.

For some people, the inability to go from park to park could be a deal breaker for their next Disney vacation. As details begin to emerge about the reservation system, there may not even the ability to walk into the park. Thinking about how quickly a RunDisney event sells out, those park reservations might be gone before you even open the MyDisney App.

Overall, there will be a long adjustment period for all types of attractions. If the park hopper option is a deal breaker, maybe it is best to postpone that next Disney vacation. Plus, if you wait till 2021, all those new attractions might be finished. It might be an even more magical experience next year.

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Are you planning a Disney vacation this year? Will the new reservation system change your plans?Dsn