Notices Sent to Guests Restricting Time Spent at Disney World Resort

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Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse in front of Cinderella Castle at Disney World

Credit: Disney

Walt Disney World guests have received documentation restricting their use of the resort.

Cinderella walking toward Cinderella Castle in the Magic Kingdom
Credit: Disney

Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Central Florida, is home to four diverse theme parks — Magic Kingdom Park, EPCOT, Disney’s Hollywood Studios, and Disney’s Animal Kingdom. Neighboring those theme parks are the two Disney water parks — Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon Water Park and Disney’s Blizzard Beach Water Park — and a plethora of hotels.

From deluxe offerings like Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa and Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge to moderate resorts such as Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort and Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort and value locations like the popular Disney’s Art of Animation Resort and Disney’s Pop Century Resort, there is a hotel for every type of guest. And that’s not even including things like Disney Vacation Club resorts, villas, and campsites.

Art of Animation Resort Cars
Credit: Disney

Disney World is where the magic of the House of Mouse gathers in its most grandiose and ambitious form. Following on from the success of its West Coast sister park, the Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, Southern California, Disney World is the most visited theme park destination in the world. Magic Kingdom alone is visited by over 50 million guests each year. But when a place contains iconic monuments like Cinderella Castle and rides like Space Mountain and Peter Pan’s Flight, it’s hard to find that surprising.

It’s true that Disney World has encountered trouble in the last few years following the pandemic shutdowns. In fact, just this year, a dip in attendance at the resort has been reported and reflected by Chief Executive Officer Bob Iger in the most recent earnings calls. Iger dramatically returned last year after the surprise outsing of Iger’s successor, Bob Chapek, who had faced criticism for years despite his leadership of the company through the pandemic era and the fledgling years of Disney’s streaming service, Disney+.

Bob Iger (L) and Bob Chapek (R) at Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge
Credit: Disney

As for the parks business, guests are still grappling with the relatively new Disney Genie+ system and the theme park reservation system. The latter will be made redundant for most ticket types come January 9, 2024, much to the glee of Disney park fans.

Not only that, but Disney has promised a $60 billion investment in its Disney Parks, Experiences and Products arm over the next decade, which has both excited and increased curiosity over what Disney plans to do next, especially at its leading resort. While the new additions of rides like Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind and TRON Lightcycle / Run have been well-received, many are getting itchy at the prospect of Disney’s competitor Universal Orlando Resort, readying the opening of their third gate, Universal’s Epic Universe, in 2025. Where is Disney’s fifth park?

Spaceship Earth at EPCOT inside Walt Disney World Resort
Credit: Disney

On a smaller scale, though, changes and updates are happening frequently resort-wide. One thing some guests may not be aware of is a specific restriction that limits a guest’s time at a resort.

When a guest decides to dine at a Disney World theme park resort hotel, they are welcome to use the resort’s parking facilities in a complimentary manner as long as they have an advanced dining reservation. However, at various times of the year, guests may be limited to the amount of time they can spend on property. And one report has highlighted that some guests have received documentation that restricts their usage of the resort.

Riviera Resort exterior at nighttime
Credit: Disney

Related: Disney’s Magic Kingdom Feels “Empty,” Video Reveals Drop In Attendance

For context, Walt Disney World’s planDisney website reads: “Guests with confirmed dining reservations at a resort hotel are welcome to park there while enjoying their meal. Standard self-parking is complimentary for Guests while dining at a resort hotel restaurant.”

“When you arrive at the resort hotel, you will need to let the security guard at the entrance gate know that you have a dining reservation,” the planDisney post reads. “Sometimes they will just ask for your name, but you should also be prepared to give them your reservation number in case they need that as well.”

Pluto and Goofy outside Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa
Credit: Disney

Kenny the Pirate notes oftentimes (but not always) that guests may be required to place a parking pass in their vehicle regarding the dining reservation at one of the Disney hotels. And it seems like Disney is getting more official with these notices. “Those with dining reservations at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort have already received the Resort Dining passes with parking restrictions on select days and times this month,” the report reads.

As the planDisney post states, these limits are often three hours. The more strict timeframes are likely due to the holiday crowds that have descended on the parks in recent days.

Grand Floridian Resort, exterior aerial shot
Credit: Disney

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Alongside this, Inside the Magic reported that these steps can add extra time to a guest’s journey. In this case, it took an extra 15 minutes to complete the security checks, be diverted to a new parking lot, and then walk to Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa. Disney World guests should anticipate extra journey time in order to not be late for their reservations at the resorts.

Did you know this about dining reservations and parking at the Disney World resorts? Let Inside the Magic know in the comments down below!

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