Shanghai Disneyland reopens with strict safety measures

After a three-month break, the Walt Disney Company’s largest Magic Kingdom in Asia is back in business. The reopening of Shanghai Disneyland with a host of mandated covid-19 health and safety measures is expected to serve as a blueprint for how Disney’s U.S. theme parks will need to function if they hope to swing open their gates in the next few months.

During last week’s earnings call, Disney CEO Bob Chapek said the park would open with an unspecified capacity lower than the 30 percent, but that numbers would gradually increase over a period of weeks. Working with local health officials, the company has implemented a range of new safety measures, including social distancing in lines, required mask wearing for staff and patrons, frequent cleaning and a temperature check upon entry.

The first group of 200 lucky visitors were allowed into the park at the usual opening morning time. Guests are being granted entry in staggered batches, based on predetermined times printed on their tickets. The $5.5 billion Shanghai Disney resort closed on 25 January amid the covid-19 pandemic. The Shanghai Disneyland resort had previously reopened its outdoor shopping mall and a hotel.

Shortly before doors opened, Shanghai Disneyland hosted a special reopening ceremony against a backdrop of the iconic Floral Minnie in spring colors. Cast members from every themed land in Shanghai Disneyland — including Mickey Mouse and his friends, Duffy and friends, Marvel super heroes, Disney princesses, Toy Story friends, Star Wars characters and others — were on hand to invite fans back and commemorate the occasion.