Pandemic Still Threatens Universal, Disney Park Operations

in Tokyo Disneyland, Universal Studios Japan

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Credit: Disney

Cases of COVID-19 are rising again in Japan. Now, the Governor of Osaka, Hirofumi Yoshimura, is going to ask the Japanese central government to issue a new state of emergency. Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike is indicating that she may also do the same. If these states of emergency are enacted, that would mean that Tokyo Disneyland and Tokyo DisneySea, as well as Universal Studios Japan (located in Osaka), would have to close their gates once again.

super nintendo world
Credit: Universal Studios Japan

The state of emergency in Osaka would lead to the re-closure of Universal Studios Japan. According to Kyodo News:

“It is necessary to request the closure of large-scale commercial facilities such as theme park and eateries where infection risks are high,” Yoshimura said, while noting that steps to be taken under a state of emergency are decided by the central government.

Both Tokyo and Osaka have seen dramatic rises in cases recently. Kyodo News reported about Osaka:

The western Japan prefecture saw a record 1,219 new coronavirus cases logged on Sunday, revised from the initially announced 1,220, despite implementing tougher anti-virus measures under a quasi-state of emergency since April 5, including shorter operating hours for restaurants.

Tokyo Disneyland
Credit: Disney

The Japan Times also reported on the sharp increase in COVID-19 cases in Tokyo recently. The news outlet reports:

Tokyo reported 405 new COVID-19 infections on Monday amid a resurgence of infections linked to new virus variants. The figure was the most for a Monday since Jan. 25 and was higher than the previous two Mondays — 306 on April 12 and 249 on April 5.

On Sunday, the metropolitan government reported 543 new coronavirus cases, topping 500 for the sixth straight day.

Both Universal Studios Japan and Tokyo Disneyland closed in February 2020 due to COVID-19. Universal Studios Japan reopened in mid-June, with Tokyo Disneyland following in July.

haunted mansion in tokyo disneyland
Credit: Disney

Guests have steadily been visiting both Universal and Disney theme parks in Japan for some time. Just last month, Universal Studios Japan finally opened their much-anticipated Super Nintendo World, after the initial reopening had been delayed.

super nintnedo world
Credit: Universal

On April 19, Tokyo DisneySea announced that it would be reducing its hours as a result of measures being taken amid the pandemic. DisneySea will close at 8 p.m., the same time as Tokyo Disneyland. The theme park sent out an official release, stating:

Oriental Land Co., Ltd. announced today that the Park closing time for Tokyo Disneyland® and Tokyo DisneySea® Parks will be 8:00 p.m. from April 20 through May 11, 2021. This decision is based on the priority measures to prevent the spread of New Coronavirus implemented by the Chiba Prefecture local government.

Oriental Land Co., Ltd is the company that officially owns the theme park. The theme park operates with a license from Disney.

Tokyo Disneyland
Credit: Disney

As of this article’s publication, Universal Studios Japan has not released any official changes to its operations or operating hours, although Osaka is poised to soon be in a state of emergency. We will update our website with more information on Universal Studios Japan and Tokyo Disney Resort operations as it is released.

What do you think about these potential park closures? Let us know in the comments.

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