Disney CEO Bob Chapek spoke with CNBC today and discussed a conservative approach when reopening the Disney theme parks. As Shanghai Disneyland takes the first few steps in reopening, the attention has shifted on what it will take to reopen the domestic parks at Walt Disney World.
Chapek specifically mentioned that Disney is keeping an eye on the local hospitals around their theme parks when deciding when to reopen. He added that in addition to social distancing, guests and cast members will likely be required to wear masks at Walt Disney World.
Besides the noteworthy comment on masks, Chapek also reiterated that Walt Disney World does not have a reopening date scheduled at this time. Disney will likely see how things go with Disney Springs and then make a decision depending on guest behavior. Chapek said numerous times that guests adapting to Disney’s guidelines has been a key factor in their ability to reopen.
Guest compliance may be the biggest wildcard when discussing the reopening of Walt Disney World compared to Shanghai Disneyland. Asian cultural has been accustomed to using masks well before the current pandemic, but will American guests be able to make that shift?