To proactively addresses some of the more straightforward questions that were being asked, Disneyland Resort has posted a frequently asked questions page. This answers some of the most common questions, but leaves many others we’ve been seeing from readers unaddressed.
As such, here we’re sharing Disneyland Resort’s official info and also creating our own FAQ below that. This is based upon a mix of info, speculation, past precedent, and some educated guesses. There’s also a bit of goofiness. Not to make light of a global pandemic, but it’s been a stressful week and I think we could all use it…
On a serious note, we understand that many of you are crushed that the dream vacation to Disneyland Resort is not going to happen right now. You absolutely have our sympathies. We would strongly encourage you to reschedule rather than cancel–we firmly believe that California is the greatest place on earth, and everything that makes it great will still be there when this outbreak is over.
We would also encourage you to be as calm and patient as possible. For one, California is prioritizing public health and safety above all else. For its part, Disney should be applauded for closing even after the state gave it an exemption to the public gatherings rule. It’s reassuring to see Disney put health & safety above short-term profits. Disney is also paying Cast Members during this closure, which is a huge relief for a ton of families that rely on Orange County’s largest employer.
Finally, this remains an evolving situation. Not every single Cast Member has been apprised of all details regarding this closure, which came fast. For your own sake, we would stress patience and calmness. For the sake of those with whom you interact, kindness will be the ultimate virtue.
With all of that prefacing out of the way, here’s info from Disneyland Resort’s official FAQ…
Will Disneyland Annual Passes be extended?
Yes. All Annual Passholders who have Passports that are valid during the closure period, will have their Passport expiration date extended based on pass type and level of access due to the impacts of the closure.
The extended date will be reflected on your Passport account prior to our reopening of the parks.
Do I need to continue making monthly AP payments even though the parks are closed?
Annual Passholders on the monthly payment program will remain on the current payment schedule and continue to make their scheduled payments.
These Annual Passholders will have their Passport expiration date extended based on pass type and level of access due to the impacts of the closure, and will not be required to make any payments during that extended period.
What about Disney Flex Pass reservations?
Disney will cancel reservations for the duration of the closure without penalty.
What about special event tickets?
Guests will be refunded the purchase price for any separately ticketed special events that were planned during the closure.
If your event is scheduled during the closure, you will automatically receive a refund within 30 days and do not need to contact Disneyland Resort.
What about regular tickets purchased for travel dates during the closure?
Disneyland actually hasn’t officially released guidance on this, but tickets purchased now are valid through December 30, 2021 (some tickets bought earlier may have a December 30, 2020 expiration date).
Unused tickets can be used for future travel dates. For 1-day tickets purchased during one price tier, the price paid for unused ticket can be applied to a new ticket.
What happens to hotel reservations during the closure of Disneyland Resort?
Guests may cancel their hotel reservations for scheduled stays during the closure and receive a full refund by calling (714) 520-5050. Disneyland anticipates high call volume over the next few days.
If you are unable to reach a Disneyland representative before your check-in date, you will not be penalized or assessed fees for cancelling your Disneyland Resort hotel room reservation after your check-in date.
What about vacation packages during the closure?
Same deal. Guests may cancel their Disneyland vacation packages for scheduled visits during the closure, if booked through the Walt Disney Travel Company, and receive a full refund—excluding third-party products and fees (presumably travel insurance).
To receive your refund, please call (714) 520-5050. Disneyland anticipates high call volume over the next few days. If you are unable to reach us before your check-in date, you will not be penalized or assessed fees for cancelling your Disneyland vacation package after your check-in date.
What about other reservations for dining and experiences?
Guests may cancel their reservations at any time and receive a full refund for anything scheduled during the closure period, including but not limited to dining, VIP tours, Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique, and Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge stuff.
If your reservation is scheduled during the closure, you will not be charged a fee and you will automatically receive a refund if you do not cancel.
OUR ANSWERS TO OTHER FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Will Disneyland & Disney California Adventure reopen on April 1, 2020?
That remains to be seen.
We would caution you against having the expectation that everything will go back to normal come April 2020. Disneyland is simply following California’s guidance, with the expectation that the state will reevaluate in a couple of weeks. The state is prioritizing public health interests, but also has businesses in mind with the goal of causing the least disruption to the economy.
It’s moderately instructive to see how this outbreak has played out elsewhere, particularly in countries that have not engaged in aggressive early-stage containment. Japan is a decent example, and original 2-week closures there were just extended another 2 weeks, to be reevaluated at that time.
When do you think Disneyland will reopen?
I don’t have the slightest idea. This such a dynamic and evolving situation–and one that remains in its early stages in the United States. I’m hopeful it can be resolved as quickly and safely as possible with aggressive measures and diligence, but I’m skeptical.
With all of that said, my personal best case scenario is Disneyland reopening at some point in mid to late April 2020. If I had a trip planned in or before May 2020, I’d begin processing the very real possibility that it might not occur.
What will crowds be like when Disneyland does reopen?
We’d expect a short-term spike in crowds.
Disneyland is a unique beast, and there will be a lot of pent-up local demand when the parks reopen. Disneyland is a local institution that diehards will want to revisit. Moreover, many Californians will want to get out of their houses and do something. How this will impact long-term crowds is a totally different story and remains to be seen.
Are third party hotels near Disneyland still open?
Based on bare minimum due diligence, it appears that nearby hotels are remaining open.
In checking booking engines along with some hotel websites and social media, I do not see any that are closing. However, there are nearly 200 hotels near Disneyland, so it’d be easy to miss one…or ten.
Is Downtown Disney still open?
However, that’s because the vast majority of businesses there are owned and operated by third parties. Expect those to independently announce closures in turn.
We have a vacation scheduled for April 2020 or beyond, what should we do?
Wait and see.
There’s no benefit to acting preemptively. If Disneyland reopens and you’re comfortable to travel, great. If the parks do not open or you’re not comfortable to travel, you will certainly have the option to cancel or postpone without penalty at a later date.
Are other theme parks in California closed?
Pretty much all of them.
All Six Flags parks, Universal Studios Hollywood, Knott’s Berry Farm, Legoland California, San Diego Zoo & Safari Park, and SeaWorld San Diego are all closed through at least the end of March 2020. As with Disneyland, additional extensions to those closures are possible.
We are thinking about proceeding with our California trip as normal, what else is closed?
Most major tourist attractions have already announced closures, with more likely to follow. Per the Los Angeles Times, 12 of the 21 largest museums in California are closed. Here’s a list from Los Angeles Magazine of everything that has been cancelled or postponed.
At present, California’s 9 U.S. National Parks are remaining open. Same goes for the state parks. Social distancing does not mean isolating yourself indoors. So long as you’re keeping a safe physical distance from others, it’s still a great time to get out and away from other people in one of the world’s most biodiverse places.
We booked tickets/hotel/etc. via a third party, what is their refund policy?
We’d recommend contacting them directly.
This is an unprecedented and already catastrophic event for businesses–they’re figuring it out on the fly. We’d stress patience.
What about In-N-Out Burger?
Literally none of you have asked about this national treasure, which is frankly offensive.
Here’s In-N-Out’s COVID-19 Notice. Consider playing it safe and ordering the award-winning Double Double via the Drive-Thru. And of course, order Animal Style–for its numerous health benefits. Research suggests it’s just as effective at fighting coronavirus as Silver Solution.
What about the streak of that dude who has visited Disneyland every day for like 2,995 consecutive days?
His streak is over.
Sorry, I don’t make the rules. He specifically stated he has visited Disneyland “every day.” Not every operating day. With that said…what a way to end it. Not by lack of dedication or injury–but for reasons beyond his control. It had to have become more of a burden than a source of joy at this point, anyway. I’ll bet Cal Ripken Jr. wishes he had an out like this.
What about Guy Selga’s streak of eating at Award Wieners?
No. Mr. Selga’s streak technically pertains to the number of wieners eaten, and not simply the calendar.
Plus, if we’re parsing words, that’s more of a curse than a streak. Guy Selga’s wiener-eating end-game is ultimately qualifying for the 2028 Los Angeles Summer Olympics. We’re not sure of how all of that will work out, and it’s safe to assume that neither is he. We nonetheless wish him the best of luck in this trying time.
What will happen to the Ducks of Disneyland or Francisco the Cat during the closure?
In my heart and imagination, the Ducks of Disneyland and Disneyland Cats have run of the park, waddling through the Pirates of the Caribbean queue, meowing along with the Stretching Room spiel, and slurping up the shakes at Schmoozies.
In reality, Francisco is probably chilling in the exact same spot in Grizzly Peak as always, and the ducks are likely wandering aimlessly through the hub and floating around the moat. Regardless of what they’re doing during their leisure time, the cats are still being cared for and their feeding stations throughout Disneyland Resort undoubtedly are being refilled.
Have any questions we didn’t answer with the above FAQ? Do you have a trip to California planned in the near future? Will you be visiting even if Disneyland and DCA are closed? Do you agree or disagree with our advice? Any questions we can help you answer? Hearing your feedback—even when you disagree with us—is both interesting to us and helpful to other readers, so please share your thoughts below in the comments!