The temporary closures of Tokyo Disneyland and Tokyo DisneySea have been extended by Oriental Land Company in light of request from the Japanese government to refrain from holding events due to the current situation in Japan and abroad. At present, the reopening of the parks is planned for April 20, 2020 or beyond.
Additionally, Tokyo Disneyland Hotel, Disney Ambassador Hotel, Tokyo DisneySea Hotel MiraCosta, and Tokyo Disney Celebration Hotel will all close beginning on April 1, 2020. These four official hotels will likewise remain closed until at least April 20, 2020. This is the first closure of these hotels, which had remained operational during the previous closures of the parks.
All reservations (both dining and hotels) will be cancelled automatically during this period. No cancellation fee will be charged for reservations with check-in dates up to May 31, 2020. This comes after Katsunobu Kato, Japan’s health minister, has informed Prime Minister Shinzo Abe that there was evidence that Japan was now at a high risk of rampant infection…
Tokyo registered 47 new cases Thursday, its biggest single-day rise by more than double the previous high, as the metropolis of 13.9 million people attempts to isolate itself. The governor of Tokyo has asked the city’s residents to stay at home this weekend at all costs to avoid an explosion of infections following a rise in the number of local cases.
Refraining from non-essential outings this weekend is a voluntary measure for now. However, it leaves many people in Tokyo wondering whether a lockdown is on the horizon if cases proliferate on their current trajectory. There’s also widespread speculation that Japan’s government intentionally avoided widespread testing in an effort to avoid economic devastation and to keep the Olympics on track.
Now, the former seems unavoidable and it’s too late for the latter. Earlier this week, Japan Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and International Olympic Committee president Thomas Bach agreed to postpone the Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympics by about one year. This is the first time the Olympiad Games have been postponed or cancelled for any reason other than war.
When the games eventually happen, they will still be called the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games. During the next year, the Olympic flame will also remain lit and displayed in Fukushima to serve as a symbol of hope for the world.
That timeframe has not been modified, and it remains to be seen whether it’ll debut in May 2020 or not. With the situation in Japan seemingly worsening and no need to have the expansion debut ahead of the Tokyo 2020 Olympics later this summer, further delay seems likely.
It’s also worth noting that Tokyo Disney Resort’s 2020 calendar of events was heavily modified due to this expansion and the Olympics, and the anticipated crowds that would be drawn by both.
Consequently, Easter and summer special events that normally occur at Tokyo Disneyland were left off the schedule. It remains to be seen if these offerings will be added or not. Of course, this assumes that the parks will reopen by May/June/July in the first place, and that’s far from certain.
If there’s a silver lining to this, it’s that Tokyo Disney Resort has released an incredible high quality video of Fantasmic’s full show, which unceremoniously ended its run during the closure. This incarnation of Fantasmic is not as good as Disneyland’s, but it’s better than Walt Disney World’s and is very different than both–worth watching if you’ve never seen it.
Every parade, show, and other piece of entertainment at Tokyo Disney Resort is filmed from multiple angles and subsequently released on DVD or Blu-ray sets during anniversary years. We have a couple of these box sets (see our Review of the Tokyo Disney Resort 30th Anniversary “The Best” Blu-ray Set) and they’re fantastic. This is essentially what you’d see in one of those sets. (On a related note, if Walt Disney World wants to recoup some lost revenue, we know plenty of fans who would pay $$$$ for a similar 50th Anniversary Blu-ray!)
Ultimately, this should be somewhat interesting even if you’re not planning a trip to Tokyo Disney Resort, as it’s a possible glimpse of the pattern that Walt Disney World and Disneyland will likewise utilize. Timeline-wise, this situation is a few weeks further along in Japan than in the United States.
As was the case there, we are almost certain to see another extension of the current closure announced (perhaps today after the stock market closes?). It wouldn’t be surprising if, like the Japan parks, our extension is only a couple of weeks long and is followed up with yet another closure. Sadly, there’s nothing to suggest the situation has peaked. It’s anyone’s guess as to when the parks will reopen, but we would not put money on that occurring in April 2020.
What do you think of this news? Are you surprised that the situation in Japan is worsening after seemingly being under control? Do you have a trip planned to Tokyo Disney Resort this year that you anticipate being impacted? Will this cause you to postpone traveling to Japan or elsewhere in the world? Do you agree or disagree with our advice? Any questions? 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.