The Walt Disney World Resort has made it clear that it plans to keep its Theme Park Reservation System in place for at least another two years. Disney Fanatic recently reported on the development, showing confirmation on the Disney World Park Pass Availability Calendar, and we have noticed a mostly negative, but also a bit of a mixed reaction to this news. It is still unclear if Disney World intends to make Park Pass Reservations a permanent part of their Guest experience, but with Park Pass Reservations already opened through January 2024, how could the Central Florida mega-resort look to wean its Guests off of this policy before then?
Read More: Disney World Park Reservations Now Required Through 2024
This article does not seek to debate the rationale of the Disney Park Reservation System, but to speculate and draw attention to the relationship between Park Passes and Guests’ expectations. What would a sudden change to Disney Park accessibility–like an early end to the Park Reservations–mean for Guests’ overall experiences?
One of the biggest foreseeable issues would be preserving the Park access that the reservations guarantee. For example, say you score Theme Park Reservations to Magic Kingdom Park for your family on the Fourth of July, 2023. You can relax knowing that you have priority access to a Disney Theme Park on one of the busiest days of the year.
Related: Florida Residents – Don’t Sleep on Exclusive Disney World Park Tickets
But, let’s say Bob Chapek or Josh D’Amaro or some other Disney executives come out between now (January 2022) and July 4, 2023, and say, “We don’t need Park Reservations anymore. Let’s go back to normal.” It stands to reason that you would be standing there in shock, afraid your security was suddenly taken away, right? And it’s not just for July 4, or Christmas, or Thanksgiving. Disney has already built the expectation that Guests will get to enter their Park first, be it Magic Kingdom, EPCOT, Disney’s Hollywood Studios, or Disney’s Animal Kingdom.
Obviously, if Disney World simply cuts off the dates needed for a Park Pass Reservation, then the old attendance precedent is set, but if they plan on ending the system earlier than mid-January 2024, the powers that be should find a way to honor the Park Pass Reservations that have already been made.
Related: OpEd: The Disney Park Pass System at Walt Disney World Needs an Overhaul