After Layoffs and Furloughs, Most Disney World Cast Members Have Returned

in Walt Disney World

disney cast member mask

Credit: Disney

Walt Disney World has become a place for many Disney fans and families to feel welcome and at home. For many Cast Members, this past year has had its ups and downs — especially when it comes to the mass layoffs and furloughs as a result of the pandemic — but thousands have been overwhelmed with emotion to return to The Most Magical Place On Earth.

Today, Walt Disney Company CEO Bob Chapek discussed the fiscal second-quarter 2021 financial results, and he doesn’t forget to mention what the Cast Members mean to him.

Bob Chapek
Credit: Disney

Disney CEO Confirms Most Cast Members Have Returned

Since Walt Disney World reopened last summer, many Disney fans have anticipated running into their favorite Cast Member again, but with the theme park capacity limited and many events still temporarily suspended, Disney has had to gradually bring back Cast Members as Disney World has continued its phased reopening.

Now, as Disney World continues to recover and bounce back, it has been confirmed that most Cast Members have returned to the Most Magical Place on Earth.

Today, Chapek confirmed that around 80% of Walt Disney World Cast Members have returned to doing what they love most:

“In terms of labor, we had about 80% of our cast members return that we’ve asked to return. And obviously one of the gating factors is to continue to get more and more cast members back, it thrills us to be able to do that. We’ve had no problems whatsoever in terms of trying to get our cast to come back and make some magic for our guests.”

Disney World Cast Members Covid-19 Testing
Credit: Josh D’Amaro Instagram

Cast Member Appreciation

Recently we shared some amazing stories of Cast Members returning to Walt Disney World and noticed how Instagram is buzzing with Cast Member love! Disney fan and Disney World Guest Steve shared how he ran into his future father-in-law in Animal Kingdom and expressed how overjoyed he was to see him in his element now that he is back working at Disney World:

Returning to the Magic?

The other day I ran into Animal Kingdom to grab some food for my folks that they’ve been craving, and got to see my future father-in-law back at it again!

He got the call to return to his PhotoPass role and couldn’t be happier. Seeing the big guy in his element, laughing along with the guests and capturing their priceless memories warmed my heart in ways words can’t express. Talk about a GREAT day! After a career in law enforcement, he gets to spend his days once again being the lovable PhotoPass goofball at Animal Kingdom. ❤️
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For many Cast Members, returning to work at Disney World is a huge step forward into normalcy again and gives the remaining Cast Members hope to return in the near future as Disney World continues to increase capacity and bring back more offerings. As huge fans, this makes our hearts so happy, and to hear how many Cast Members are now making the magic happen for families is exciting after thousands of Disney employees were furloughed and laid off in 2020 as a result of the pandemic. 

We can only hope that with time and with many vaccines continuing to be distributed, that we will be able to see Walt Disney World theme parks in full effect once again!

Do you have a favorite Cast Member in Walt Disney World? Are you happy to know that most Cast Members have returned to work in Florida? Share your favorite Cast Member compliments in the comments below!

If you need advice planning your next Walt Disney World adventure, our friends at Academy Travel can help!

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