Universal Parks Continue to Roll Back Safety Measures

in Universal Orlando

The Incredible Hulk Coaster glowing green at sunset.

Credit: Universal Orlando Resort

Universal Orlando is undergoing several changes throughout their Parks lately. From retheming an entire area in Universal Studios to building Epic Universe, Universal Orlando is hard at work.

Epic Universe will be the third Park coming to the Orlando Resort. Scheduled to open sometime in summer 2025, the Park will feature attractions themed after How to Train Your Dragon, the Universal Monsters, and SUPER NINTENDO WORLD. As Universal works on expanding their Parks and their theme park universe, they’re also actively rolling back safety measures.

Minion Land at Universal Studios Florida Concept Art
Credit: Universal Orlando

Originally primarily enacted as a safety and health measure during the 2020 COVID pandemic, Universal Orlando and several other theme parks installed hand sanitizer stations throughout the ride queues as the Parks slowly started to open back up. Other measures taken were the six-foot markers placed in queues and around the Parks as well as reminders about masks and maintaining safe distances.

Hogwarts Castle lights up with Hufflepuff projections
Credit: Universal Orlando Resort

While most of the measures have been removed over the last year, especially as COVID has officially been deemed no longer a major threat, the hand sanitizer stations could still be found in attraction lines, near food locations, and elsewhere in Universal. Now, it seems as though those, too, are being phased out, just in time for the Park’s busiest season.

Guests ride bicycle-like vehicles through a trippy field of space flowers. Universal Orlando's ET Adventure
Credit: Universal Orlando Resort

In a recent post shared to Twitter, Universal Guest @EthanHershaft pointed out that the hand sanitizers located in the VelociCoaster queue and the Men in Black single rider line have been removed. And honestly? Most of the responses seem rather annoyed that they’re gone. A comment from @theahsokathanos states, “Yeah I’m actually a little annoyed they’re all going away. It was nice keeping my hands clean when nothing else in the park is.”

A Disneyland Cast Member stands by a COVID health and safety sign, wearing a face mask.
Credit: Official Disneyland Instagram

As @FrankTheTankWM points out, “So many other viruses you can get from the parks and covid is still a thing. They should keep them in the parks.” While Guests should bring their own forms of sanitizer, having them readily available for free in case Guests forgot or weren’t able to access their own immediately was a nice option. Theme parks are hotspots for bacteria and germs, and sicknesses like colds and the flu are easily spread.

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

Many comments pointed out that it was always hit or miss if they were actually filled up or not, but @Stacie_w_books blames the Parks. “Honestly felt like we had a chance with Covid to make things less disgusting and corporations and most people just said ‘I’d rather not. I’ll take being dirty.’ And the frustration will never end.” 

Universal Studios Florida at Universal Orlando Resort
Credit: Universal Orlando

While COVID may not be the threat it once was, it’s still around, and other illnesses and bacteria are still something to be aware of. Hand sanitizer was something easy the Park could’ve kept up with in order to offer Guests a small measure of health protection, especially considering rides that thousands of people come into contact with each day. Hopefully the Park will still provide some stations in various areas, even if they roll back most of them.

Do you think the theme parks should continue to provide hand sanitizer to Guests? Share your opinion in the comments below!

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