Previously Banned Plastic Straws Reappear at Disneyland

in Disneyland Resort

plastic straws

Credit: Inside the Magic

Disney has made a conscious effort to move toward a more green initiative by producing less waste at their theme parks.

plastic straws
Credit: Inside the Magic

One of the most noticeable differences Guests have likely experienced over the past couple years is the change from plastic straws, which have been proven to be harmful to not only the environment but wildlife as well, to paper straws which are easily biodegradable. 

As we have previously discussed, Disney’s commitment reduce single-use plastic in the Parks will result in a “reduction of more than 175 million straws and 13 million stirrers annually.” Disney shared back in 2018 that the company would also:

  • Reduce plastics in guest rooms by 80 percent by transitioning to refillable in-room amenities in hotels and on cruise ships.
  • Reduce the number of plastic shopping bags used in parks and on cruise ships, giving guests the option of purchasing a reusable bag.
  • Eliminate polystyrene cups at their owned and operated locations around the world.
  • Continue recycling and responsibly disposing of single-use waste that can’t be eliminated.
Credit: Disney

Although paper straws are a much better choice environmentally, many Guests may not love using them as they can tend to become soggy quite quickly. Additionally, plastic straws (particularly bendy straws) are a necessity for many disabled people. For a variety of reasons, some Guests actually have begun to bring their own straws to the theme parks. Disney also sells reusable straws to Guests, in case they want an alternative option to the paper straw.

Now, it seems Disneyland is offering plastic straws at very select locations! Disney has not announced that they would be changing the plastic straw policy at Disney Parks, but we have started to see the plastic bendy straw a pop up at some dining locations in Disneyland Resort. Most recently, we found plastic straws available at Mint Julep Bar in New Orleans Square, as of Monday, August 9.

plastic straws
Credit: Inside the Magic

In our experience, we found the plastic straws are mixed in among the paper options, however, Disney has the paper straws labeled with green on the wrapper for Guests to tell the difference. Note that not all paper straws are labeled with a green wrapper, though, and most paper straws in the Parks have a plain white paper wrapper.

It is unclear why the plastic straw option has become sporadically available at this location and a few others in the Parks; however, we do have a few speculations as to why.

plastic straws
Credit: Inside the Magic

There is a chance that Disneyland may have a supply shortage on paper straws (as many businesses throughout the globe have experienced supply shortages on a variety of products as a result of the ongoing pandemic). So, perhaps Disneyland has had to revert to plastic straws in order to ensure that all Guests have a straw option available at applicable locations.

Another possibility is that Disney may be accommodating to Guests with disabilities. By having a bendable straw options, it can help those Guests with limited mobility (or other needs) drink their beverage with much more ease, as these plastic straws are bendy and also do not disintegrate. Again, both of these options are purely speculation at this point; as mentioned, Disney has not made any statements regarding plastic straws reappearing at the Parks.

In our experience, have yet to see plastic straws appear at any other location at Disneyland, though we have seen some Guests report them sporadically elsewhere. Disney World seems to still only offer paper straws to their Guests.

Do you think that Disney Parks should begin to offer plastic straws once again at more locations? Let us know your thoughts on this in the comments.

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