Terrible news this morning as WFTV is reporting a man has died in an industrial…
“Are face masks required in Disney World since reopening?” For many guests trying to decide whether or not to take a trip to the most magical place on Earth, the answer to that question is a big factor whether or not to go to Disney World.
Since Disney Springs reopened in May and the theme parks in July, Disney has made it mandatory for both Cast Members and guests to wear face masks while in the theme parks, restaurants and almost any public place.
UPDATED 10/15/20 – Disney has once again updated its Face Mask Policy and has created signs telling guests to wear face masks properly, or leave.
It also doesn’t look like face masks are going anywhere anytime soon as the mayor of Florida’s Orange County, Jerry Demings has said face coverings will be required for the foreseeable future.
Read more about this in the NEWS section in this post…
The fan reaction to the Disney mask policy has been an interesting one to say the least. Just the idea of having to wear a face-covering in Walt Disney World has been a bone of contention around the Disney community, with many people already refusing to go.
We get it, we really do. Disney World is your “happy place,” as it is for millions of other people from all over the world. We go to Disney World to forget our problems. It’s a place where no matter what else is going on in the world, we don’t have to think about it. We can just relax and have a good time.
It’s only natural then that we don’t want that perfect image of Disney World that we have in our mind to be changed in any way. The idea of wearing a face mask in the blistering heat of Florida doesn’t help either.
Unfortunately, right now that is out of our control. Disney has made it clear that for the foreseeable future, face masks are going to be an essential part of theme park attire, as much as walking shoes and Mickey ears, if not more.
In this post, we are going to share everything we know so far about face coverings in the Disney parks. We’ll discuss the Disney World Mask Policy, who has to wear one, where you have to wear a mask in Disney World, and if you can take them off at all. There are also plenty of places to buy them inside the parks so we’ll cover that too.
Many of our readers have also asked: “How Long Will Disney Require Masks?” While we don’t have the exact answer to that question at this time, we’ll do our best to share with you how long we think masks will be required at Disney World.
Lastly, we’ll give you our opinion on if in light of this news, if you should still go to Disney World anyway, or if it’s better to postpone your trip to a time when face masks are not required.
So far, the mask policy at Walt Disney World has worked pretty well, all things considering. 99% of guests have complied and Disney has done a nice job in making it clear what the requirements are and where you have to wear one. While not the most comfortable situation, it seems like it’s been working up to this point.
One thing we want to make clear is we are not medical experts. This post is not here to give our opinions on whether we think face masks are necessary for the Disney parks or not. We are only covering what Disney is saying about them and how that affects your trip.
We definitely want to hear your opinion on the matter, but we ask everyone commenting below to keep things to a calm and rational manner. We do not feel the need to insult anyone for their opinion, for or against, and we hope you don’t either.
We’ll continue to fill in the details as soon as more information comes out about the Disney World face mask policy and any changes to the rules.
If you want the latest info on the Disney World Reopening and all the new guidelines in the parks, don’t forget to sign up for our FREE Weekly E-Mail Newsletter. You can sign up here: Join our E-Mail Newsletter
We’re going to answer all your FAQs about masks at Disney World, so let’s dive in and see what we know so far.
(NEWS 10/15/20): Disney Updates Policy, Tells Guests to Wear Face Masks or Leave
Since Disney first announced that face masks were going to be required in The Walt Disney World theme parks, it has been the hottest point of discussion in the Disney community, with some agreeing and some disagreeing.
Disney has updated their mask policy multiple times since then, and maybe none stronger than this last update as Disney is telling guests to properly wear a face mask or leave the parks.
There have been signs throughout the parks since July telling guests to wear face masks, and Cast Members even have been nicely reminding guests to comply when then see guests are not following the rules.
Now however, Disney has added signs throughout the parks that read: “Guests not properly wearing an approved mask will be asked to leave.”
Never have they been so strict, but apparently Disney isn’t messing around and have found too many guests not following the rules to find the need to put signs up like this.
Before this latest warning, Disney made other updates to its face mask policy with more specific instructions about when guests can and can’t remove their face coverings. While not wearing a mask has always been acceptable while eating and drinking, guests now must stay stationary while doing so, and distanced from others.
The new clarification from Disney reads:
“You may remove your face covering while actively eating or drinking, but you should be stationary and maintain appropriate physical distancing.“
Noticed that the words “actively eating or drinking” were used in the update. This is because some guests have been taking advantage of the face mask policy by walking around with a drink or food item in their hand as an excuse to pull down their face mask.
With this change, Disney is saying that no longer is acceptable and you have to be actively eating or drinking. The moment you stop, you must pull back up your face covering. Guests are also being asked to stand in one place while consuming food or drinks and not walk around through the park at the same time.
If you are moving in the park from one place to another, you MUST be wearing a mask. This is to ensure that guests remain at least 6 feet apart before removing their face masks to eat or drink.
We’ve already seen Cast Members have to warn guests in the park of this very behavior, so now with the wording updated in the park face mask policy, it should help make things a bit more clear for all parties involved.
Any guests who are non-compliant to the rules will be asked to leave the park.
(NEWS 8/25/20): Orange County Mayor Says Face Masks Likely for ‘Foreseeable Future’
Waiting to go to Walt Disney World when face coverings are no longer required? It looks like you are going to have to keep waiting for a while longer.
Recently in a press conference, Orange County’s Mayor Jerry Demings responded to questions about whether he expects to relax the restrictions for wearing face masks anytime soon.
Despite overall improving numbers in Orange County and in Florida in general, Demings had this to say: “No, I don’t. I intend to leave it in place for the foreseeable future because I believe that it is playing a significant role in reducing the spread of the virus within our community.”
Many medical experts agree with Demings, including Dr. Raul Pino, the health officer for the Florida Department of Health in Orange County. Recently, he said that the mask requirement could last, “Until maybe the spring, or until we have a vaccine.”
This pretty much confirms what we’ve thought for a while now that face masks in Disney World will be required through the rest of 2020 and at least into part of 2021. We’ll keep an eye on it and let you know if something changes.
Disney’s Face Mask Policy
Right now as of this writing, face masks are absolutely, 100% required for guests in the Walt Disney World theme parks.
As we previously heard from multiple executives in the company, and recent agreements with Disney labor union, they are required in the theme parks. They’ve been preparing people for this eventuality, and there is a strategy behind those announcements.
- Right now, face coverings are currently required in Disney World for any guests ages 2 and up.
The Disney World mask policy is confirmed on the Disney World website, and on our first trip to Disney Springs after reopening, and since, we found that everyone is required to wear a mask, no exceptions.
What about the theme parks? How do we know face masks will be required there too? Disney has put a list of requirements for the theme parks on their website, and face masks are clearly included there too.
You can see right there that face coverings are required for guests 2 years and older.
There are also new safety signs located throughout the theme parks and Disney Springs shopping center, and face mask requirements in Disney World are listed on the signs.
A Disney face mask policy was implemented first in Shanghai Disneyland. The theme park reopened its doors in May 2020, and they put in place a variety of new safety measures for guests and cast members alike, one of which is requiring face masks to be worn while in the parks.
Walt Disney World executives in the states have been working closely with the various government agencies, recovery task forces, and health experts in order to stabilize just exactly what mask requirements should be required in the U.S. parks.
Face masks coming to Disney World has been known for a while as Disney CEO Bob Chapek commented in an interview back in the Spring with CNBC about the Disney World parks reopening.
In answer to the question about what the key thing to get the U.S. Disney parks up and running again is Chapek said:
“One of the things we’re likely going to require is masks for both the Cast and for the guests. And I think the masks for the guest will be something that culturally is different. In Asia, as you know, it’s fairly commonplace for folks to walk around in public with masks on. That is not the case in the United States. So that will be something that will be a little trying for some of the guests, particularly in the hot, humid summers that we tend to have.”
Masks are one of the most important new safety guidelines. It is just as important as distancing, which Disney is promoting through new technologies like the Disney Virtual Queue which helps people to keep a distance by staying out of lines.
Who Has to Wear a Face Mask?
As stated by Disney officials, face masks are required for both Cast Members and Guests. Disney is not distinguishing between anyone entering the parks, as anyone could pass on germs to another person.
Persons required to wear face coverings in Walt Disney World:
- All Guests ages 2 years and up
- All Disney Cast Members
On the Cast Member side, this makes a lot of sense and it’s obvious that since their job is to interact with guests all day, Disney wants to make sure they are extra careful in protecting both parties.
As a surprise to many, guests are also included in these guidelines. You really should not be surprised with Disney’s decision however as they are listening to direction from the CDC and other health organizations/experts on the best way to contain and prevent new cases from popping up in the parks.
Even children age 2 years and up are required to wear a face mask in Walt Disney World.
Many parents dread the idea of getting their kids to wear a face mask all day long in potentially 90+ degree weather. This requirement however is deemed necessary by the authorities and coincides with the protocols in place in Shanghai, Paris and other Disney park locations. Kids have to be included since they could just as easily spread germs to others.
Do Disney Characters Wear a Face Mask in the Parks?
No, they don’t. Disney does not want its characters to be seen wearing face masks which would ruin the character’s image and spoil some of that Disney magic. All characters currently in the parks are kept far enough away from guests so they can’t come in direct contact with them and risk infection.
Where Must You Wear One?
So far since reopening, face masks are required in almost every area of Walt Disney World.
The only three places that you don’t have to wear a face mask in Walt Disney World are:
- While dining (walking with food or sitting in a restaurant)
- Swimming in a pool
- “Relaxation Areas”
Obviously guests can’t wear a mask while eating, or swimming, so we are glad these exceptions have been made.
That means however that face coverings ARE required in the following locations:
- General Public Areas (Walking around the theme parks and hotels)
- On Attractions
- Restaurants (not at your table but walking around)
- Using Disney transportation
- Around the pool area
You do not have to wear a face-covering while seated at the table of a Disney restaurant, but you will have to wear one if you get up and go to the restroom or just walking around the restaurant.
Do I Have to Wear a Mask While Walking Around with Food or Drink?
Yes, you do. In fact, guests are now being asked to stand stationary off to the side or to find a table or bench at least 6 feet from other guests while consuming food and drink in the parks.
This is a change from the original Disney mask policy where guests were being allowed to walk around with food and drink with face coverings. Some guests were taking advantage of this policy and just would walk all day with a Coke in hand claiming to be drinking so they didn’t have to wear a mask.
This is especially a problem at the EPCOT food festivals where everyone has food or a drink in hand about 95% of the time.
One of the questions on peoples’ minds has been what happens to face masks while swimming? Thankfully, Disney has decided that face coverings are NOT be required in the Walt Disney World Resort swimming pools.
In their statement they said:
“All Guests ages 2 and up—along with Cast Members—are required to wear face coverings when visiting Walt Disney World Resort. Please bring your own face coverings and wear them at all times, except when dining or swimming.“
Though asking if they would be required in swimming pools sounds like a silly question, Disney did say that they would be required in the Resort Hotels and in common areas.
Obviously it would be impossible to wear one in the pool, as they would either fall off or the disposable ones would get ruined instantly. Since Disney is enforcing the face mask policy very seriously, we were afraid that the hotels would have to shut down the swimming pools altogether, so we’re glad it didn’t come to that.
However, even though you don’t have to wear a pool while you are IN the pool, Disney’s mask policy does require that guests wear a face covering while in the pool area. We haven’t seen this enforced very much and most guests just sitting around the pool area do not wear masks even though technically they should. Just keep this in mind.
Since walking around a theme park for 12 hours with a face mask is an exhausting situation, Disney has made designated “Relaxation Stations” located throughout the parks where guests DO NOT have to wear a face mask.
Some are located indoors and some outside, in both cases, guests can enjoy some time mask-free.
With this addition, relaxation stations now join dining and pools as the only three public situations in Disney World where guests are not required to wear a face mask.
Here are the designated Relaxation Stations in each of the 4 Disney World theme parks:
- Tomorrowland Terrace (Tomorrowland)
- Golden Oak Outpost (Frontierland)
- Pete’s Silly Sideshow (Fantasyland)
- Akershus Royal Banquet Hall (Norway Pavilion, World Showcase)
- Yorkshire County Fish Shop – Outdoor seating (UK Pavilion, World Showcase)
- Between Mission: Space and Test Track (Future World East)
- Star Wars Launch Bay (Animation Courtyard)
- Near Rise of the Resistance (Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge)
- Upcountry Landing (Asia)
- Pizzafari (Discovery Island)
Of all the Relaxation Stations, we tend to prefer the ones that are outdoors rather than indoors. We don’t know how good of an idea it is to get in a room with a bunch of other without masks. Since we tend to play it safe, we will stick to the open-air relaxation stations when we need a break.
Other Locations in Disney World
Do I Have to Wear a Face Mask Walking Around My Hotel?
Yes, you do. If it is a public space in Disney World that is not a table, pool or relaxation station you need to be wearing a mask. This includes in the lobby and hallways of hotels, outside the hotels and in public restrooms.
Do I Have to Wear a Mask in My Room?
Only if you want to. Obviously, when you are back in your hotel room, you are free to wear anything you want.
How to Wear Face Masks in Disney World
Here are some guidelines for how face coverings should fit when visiting Disney World:
- Fully cover an individual’s nose and mouth
- Fasten face masks securely with ties or ear loops and allow the guest to remain hands-free
- Fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face
- Face Masks can be disposable or reusable
- Should be made of breathable material
- Make sure you avoid touching your eyes and face as much as possible, even if you use hand sanitizer.
The CDC gives good guidelines on how to wear a mask for it to be effective in all situations.
Can You Take Off Your Mask?
Unless you are sitting down eating, swimming or in one of the relaxation stations, Disney World guests must keep their face masks on at all times. Again, if you just need a break, go to one of the relaxation stations, there are 2 or 3 in each park.
Can I Take Off My Mask to Take a Photo?
No, you can’t. Disney is pretty strict about their mask policy and have Cast Members who will tell you to put it back on, even if you are taking a quick photo.
These Cast Members are especially present around park icons like Cinderella Castle where they walk around with a sign to make sure guests keep their masks on. There is even an audio reminder played on the park loudspeaker telling guests not to remove their masks for photos.
Can I Take Off My Mask for a PhotoPass Photo?
No, you can’t. The photographer at the PhotoPass location will not take your picture if you take off your face mask. Just leave it on.
Despite these warnings, we’ve seen many people briefly taking them off for photos. We get it, you might not want to have a mask on while getting your picture taken with the castle in the background. Still, these are the rules and Disney expects that you respect the safety of others and comply with their requirements.
Do I Have to Wear a Face Mask on the Rides?
Yes, you do. All guests are required to wear a face mask on all Disney World attractions, no matter age or what type of ride it is. This includes thrill rides like Expedition Everest, Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster and Tower of Terror.
Many guests love the in-ride photos they receive on many of the Disney World attractions. However, if you take off your face mask while riding one of the attractions, you will not receive your in-ride photo in your My Disney Experience account, nor on the screen outside the ride.
Disney already has an existing policy which they can withhold any photos from guests if they are doing something on a ride that is deemed unsafe. Not wearing a face mask falls into this category.
What If You Don’t Want to Wear a Face Mask?
Granted there will be people who show up to the parks and don’t want to wear a face covering. What will Disney do at that point? The FAQs from the Disney Springs website make it clear:
What if I don’t want to wear a mask?
Here is Disney’s response to that question on the Disney Springs website (which also applies to the parks:
Given this unprecedented situation, we appreciate everyone’s patience and understanding as we navigate these challenges as responsibly as we can. With our robust measures in place, we believe a key factor in our success in reopening Disney Springs will be our Guests’ acceptance and adherence to our new protocols. Guests without masks will not be allowed entry to Disney Springs.
So that’s pretty clear. If you don’t want to wear a face mask in Disney World you will not be given entry.
Disney has also recently added more to its policy and started putting signs around the parks that read: “Guests not properly wearing an approved mask will be asked to leave.”
Disney obviously isn’t messing around and are letting people know up-front that if they don’t follow the rules they will be asked to leave. So unless you want to be kicked out of the parks, you don’t have much of a choice.
What if I Can’t Wear a Mask for Health Reasons/Difficulty Breathing?
The other complication that comes into play is what if people have health exceptions and cannot wear them? What if someone can’t breathe? We are again talking about a place where extreme heat is common, which can cause various health complications.
Disney has even made a statement on this, advising people who are not able to wear a mask because of other health reasons, to stay at home for the time being since masks are required for everyone.
Again, according to the health authorities, Disney gets its guidance from, face coverings protect people from a wearer who is infected but not aware yet of their condition and not showing symptoms. Therefore, wearing a mask helps protect both parties when everyone wears a mask. They also have a contractual obligation to protect Cast Members and their union agreement requires this.
Are Free Masks Provided in Disney World?
Free face masks are not provided by Disney when you arrive at the parks. They expect guests to bring their own face coverings to the parks and ones that comply with their standards.
We have seen on occasion Disney give guests one of the disposable masks to wear in a pinch, but they don’t make a habit of it and they don’t always have them to give. The bottom line is not to risk it and just remember to bring yours with you. If you don’t, there is a very good chance they won’t let you into the park.
What Counts as a “Face Covering?” What Kind of Mask is Acceptable?
Disney says in its list of regulations that face coverings are required in Walt Disney World. But just what exactly counts as a “face covering” anyway?
Disney gives specific information about which types of face masks are acceptable in Walt Disney World and which kinds aren’t. According to the Disney World website:
- Fully cover an individual’s nose and mouth and allow the guest to remain hands-free
- Fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face
- Be secured with ties or ear loops
- Be made of breathable material, either disposable or reusable
The following count as “face coverings” in Walt Disney World:
- Reusable or Disposable Masks
- Face Shields
- Homemade Masks
Whatever you wear, it’s important that it covers the mouth AND nose. Face masks should also fit snugly against your face and should be hands-free. You shouldn’t have to hold it against your face with your hand.
The following are NOT acceptable face coverings in Walt Disney World:
- Neck gaiters and
- Open-chin triangle bandanas
- Costume masks
Bandanas & Gaiters
Many have been wondering if they can use neck gaiters with ear loops or bandanas, but has now specifically said that neck gaiters and open-chin triangle bandanas are not allowed. This is because all face coverings must fit securely under the chin and tight enough to the face
Bandanas and gaiters are too loose-fitting to be acceptable. For a while, gaiters were considered acceptable when Disney World first reopened, but they have since changed their stance on that saying:
“At this time, based on guidance from health authorities, neck gaiters and open-chin triangle bandanas are not acceptable face coverings.“
You see more and more face shields walking around the park lately, mostly from Cast Members who are issued them. Can guests also wear a face shield in Walt Disney World?
Yes, you can. Face shields are an acceptable form of face-covering while in the Disney Parks, but ONLY if you are also wearing a standard face mask. They are not allowed by themselves.
REMINDER: Previous Disney dress code rules still apply, meaning you cannot wear a costume mask, helmet, ski mask or anything else that covers you ENTIRE face. Religious face coverings may be acceptable, however we encourage you to bring a secondary face mask just in case.
There are many different styles of face masks, each with varying rates of success at stopping the spreading of germs, both for the wearer and those around them. Consistently, Medical-grade masks including disposable surgical face masks and N95 respirators seem to work the best.
Disney is following the advice from health officials and the CDC. To get more information you can go to the CDC website and see what they say.
Buying Disney Face Masks
You may have seen already that Disney has decided to start selling its own character masks for fans to buy. Right now these can be purchased online (if you can find them in stock), or in the parks.
Disney has announced a new line of protective face masks with the Disney characters on them are now available to buy on shopDisney.com.
Disney is using their timeless stories and beloved characters to help communities abide by the new safety standards when in public settings. These protective cloth face masks fit within the standards of the FDA’s latest recommendations on non-surgical, non-industrial grade face masks.
The Disney character face masks cost $19.99 per 4-Pack and include designs of your favorites such as:
- Star Wars
Disney face masks are available in small, medium and large sizes on shopDisney.com. Orders are backed up so it might take some time to get them in.
In the Parks
Disney has started selling face masks in Walt Disney World and they have been extremely popular so far with many styles available.
One of the best places to buy some Disney character face coverings is in Disney Springs over at the Marketplace Co-Op store. These masks can also be found in the Magic Kingdom, EPCOT, Animal Kingdom and Hollywood Studios.
Disney Characters include:
- Mickey Mouse
- Winnie the Pooh
- Marie (The Aristocats)
- Baby Yoda
- The Hulk
- and many more
The designs are mostly the same ones you’ll find on shopDisney.com and cost $9.99 individually or $20 for 4.
Sizes range from Small, Medium and Large, though the smalls are not available for all styles.
- To buy the masks, first, get in line outside the Marketplace Co-Op
- A Cast Member will give you a form to fill out where you can select your design.
- The back of the form has a size chart to help you figure out which size to buy.
- Once it’s your turn, hand over your form to the Cast Member and they will find the mask you are looking for.
- You will then be directed to the correct checkout counter to complete your order.
It would be nice to see more park-specific designs that aren’t available online too. Some attraction specific designs would be awesome.
Are they Disney Face Masks Actually Good?
They honestly aren’t that bad. They aren’t our favorite face masks, but they look great and are decently comfortable. They also make a really nice gift that even someone back home would appreciate.
Face Mask Vending Machines
If for some reason you forget to bring your face covering to Disney World, don’t worry. Outside the theme parks on your way to the entrance you’ll find face mask vending machines where you can get one.
These machines are located before you go through security and near the temperature screening tents and the soda machines. They have standard disposable face masks with the elastic earpieces and an adjustable nosepiece.
Face masks from the vending machines cost $2 each. You can use cash, credit card or contactless payment like Apple Pay.
Best Face Masks for Disney World
There are numerous options when trying to decide which type of face mask to wear in Disney World. Here are a few things to keep in mind when making a decision:
Face Mask Comfort
We will be the first ones to admit that using a face mask takes some getting used to, and in the Florida heat they can be downright uncomfortable to wear, even unbearable at times. Then if you are in the parks for 8 hours straight, that makes it even worse.
One tip is we recommend practicing at home with the face masks before you come to Walt Disney World. Many people already wear them in public, when shopping, etc.
Try going for a walk with them back home so that you can start to get a feel of what it will be like when walking around the Disney Parks all day.
Cloth ear loops are much more comfortable than the elastic ones on disposable masks. The elastic really starts to irritate your ears after an hour or so and cloth is much gentler.
Also, get a face mask that ties behind your head and not around your ears. The ones we’ve tried around your ears are even painful sometimes, while the masks that tie around your head are much more comfortable and will stay on easier.
Our ears hurting after a few hours is our number one complaint when wearing face masks, so we recommended getting ear hooks/protectors which saves the strain on them.
Ear hooks lay flat against the back of your head and it attaches to the elastic straps of your face mask instead of placing the elastic loops going around your ears. They are also adjustable depending on the size of your head.
Which Material is Best?
Not all face mask materials are made equal. According to the CDC, you should look for tightly-woven cotton cloth masks that are double layered or more in order to be effective.
Make sure the material is comfortable against your skin, lightweight and breathable. Stay away from materials that are hard to breathe like vinyl.
Our Favorite Brand Mask
Of all the face masks we’ve tried, the best for Disney World or theme parks, in general, are the ones from Suay LA. They are within Disney’s standards for face coverings and are by far the most comfortable masks we’ve worn.
They come in both ear loop and tied models Comfort is extremely important and sometimes you will even forget you have it on, they feel that good! They also are breathable and work well with glasses. They also offer more protection than the normal cloth mask using a medical grade non-woven polypropylene surgical wrap.
They come in two sizes: Small and Large, but there isn’t a lot of difference honestly. I have a big head so I go with the large and it still fits pretty snugly. If you have a question on sizing, I recommend you reaching out to Suay LA directly for help.
Face Mask Tips in Disney World
While wearing a face mask while visiting Walt Disney World is not fun, here are a few tips that will help you make the best out of the situation and put up with it just a little more:
Take a Break
Going to Walt Disney World is tiring as it is, then wearing a mask all day on top of it makes it even worse. The Florida heat will just suck the energy right out of you if you don’t pace yourself.
Make sure you take breaks often to counteract mask fatigue. Stop every once and a while for a snack in a location away from people so you have an opportunity to breathe without the mask. Make sure you stay hydrated and drink lots of water too, even more than normal.
Wearing Glasses with a Face Mask
One of the most annoying things about wearing a face mask is that it can easily fog up your glasses if you wear them. This happens when the mask does not fit tightly across your cheeks and nose, causing hot air to rise up and fog the glasses.
The best solution to this is to avoid wearing glasses to the Disney Parks if you can. Wear contact lenses if possible on the days visiting the parks.
If you must wear glasses, try out a few models of face masks first before going to see which ones fit best and limit fogging.
Bring a Colling Towel or Mini Fan
Let’s face it, Florida is super hot, almost all year long. Bringing a fan or a cooling towel is a good suggestion whether or not you have to wear a mask in Disney World. They both can help you to cool down when you get overheated, which is very easy to do.
Misting fans can be purchased in the parks, but you will pay much more than if you just buy it online before your vacation.
Bring Lip Balm
This is something you might not otherwise think about bringing, but wearing a face mask all day can really make your lips chapped. Make sure you bring a stick of your favorite lip balm, one with all natural ingredients is best.
This is probably the hardest tip to follow of them all, because The Walt Disney World experience can be especially frustrating at this time. All the changes and all the new rules sometimes can make you feel overwhelmed and you might take that frustration out on your family or Cast Members.
Try to stay calm and go into it knowing that your vacation is going to be a little different than usual, and there may be more delays or frustrating situations. Know however, that the Cast Members are trying their best to make your visit a magical one, despite the current challenges, so treat them kindly and respectfully.
How Many Masks Should I Bring to Disney World?
Don’t think you can just bring one face mask with you to Disney World and you’ll be all set. You are going to need backups, backups and more backups.
How Many Should You Bring to the Parks?
You are going to need to bring multiple face masks to the Disney Parks each day. We suggest bringing at least 2 Face Masks per day, per person.
There are multiple reasons you need to bring more than face mask with you each day to the parks.
- You could lose your mask and be left without one. This could happen on a ride or leaving it behind at a restaurant.
- It rains a lot in Disney World and you could end up with a soaking wet mask.
- Your mask can get sweaty after wearing it for hours, a good reason to have another one.
- It can get uncomfortable. Sometimes after hours and hours, just the way a certain fabric rubs against your face or ears can be irritating. We’ve found switching styles mid-way through the day makes it more bearable.
We usually bring 2 cloth masks with us to the parks each day, plus we throw some disposable ones in our backpack just in case. That way, under all circumstances, we are covered.
How Many Face Mask Should You Bring on a Disney World Vacation?
This number is going to be a lot higher, but it depends on how many days you are going to the parks and if you are willing to wash your masks on vacation or not.
As we said up above, plan on 2 masks per person per day of your vacation. This obviously is going to depend on the type of mask you bring since some are washable and others disposable.
If you are using disposable masks, multiply 2 masks per day per person, by the number of days of your vacation. If you are going for 7 days, you should bring too fewer than 14 face masks with you.
If you are using washable cloth masks, it depends how often you want to wash them. We think 6 masks is the minimum. Using 2 masks per day means you will get 3 days out of them. That gives you time between washing and drying them before the next use.
You don’t want to have to wash your masks every night when you get back to your room after dinner, then risk they don’t dry enough over night to use the next day. Having a few extra will give you more flexibility.
If for whatever reason you get to Disney and you didn’t bring enough masks with you, you can always buy a few of the Disney ones in one of the gift shops. Just don’t rely on this in case they don’t have the size or styles you are looking for.
Is This Going to Hurt Attendance?
Yes and no. Obviously, there is going to be a big number of people that will not go to Disney World if masks are required in the theme parks. As we said in the beginning, it’s not everyone’s idea of a vacation dealing with covering your face in the extreme heat and trying to handle keeping them on your kids.
For many, it might just be too much of a hassle to deal with. Disney knows that and has accounted for it.
Right now they can’t afford to have the theme parks full anyway as they are limiting attendance in Disney World just like in Shanghai, Paris and the other Disney Parks. This automatically eliminates a big group of people from the equation, making it easier to stay within the attendance numbers.
In the end, as long as they have enough guests to fill the parks to 30% capacity, that’s all they need. Having mask limits attendance and keeps them in line with the latest health recommendations. This is an easy decision for Disney, with not much downside.
Is Disney Really Enforcing Face Masks?
So we know that Disney is saying that masks will be required in the parks right now, but many readers want to know: Is Disney actually enforcing the mask policy when guests aren’t cooperating?
Disney is taking the mask rules very seriously for both guests and Cast Members. After all, they are putting safety first for everyone and anyone who doesn’t comply could be potentially putting others at risk. Also because of contracts that Disney signed with the labor union, Disney has to enforce these restrictions and make people wear masks.
Disney has recently put up signs warning guests they will be asked to leave if not properly wearing a mask, so they are serious about it.
From our experience in the parks, Disney Cast Members are not shy about approaching groups of guests or individuals who are not wearing a face covering when they should and telling them they need to put one on. They’ve even assigned Cast Members in yellow shirts throughout the parks looking for guests not complying and warning them.
Are Guests Complying with the Face Mask Policy?
We have to say, for the most part the vast majority of Disney World guests we’ve seen are complying with the face mask rules.
That being said, some people just have a hard time following rules and so this is bound to come up from time to time. If people are celebrating a special event, they might not want their picture with face masks on, especially if they are distanced from others.
Thankfully, in those situations, after Disney Cast Members warn the guests, they usually put their masks on right away and that is the end of the story. There was an outlier a while back in EPCOT where a man who attacked a security guard who was told his family needed to change masks.
We hope that everyone is smart enough to listen to Disney and follow the rules. Even if you don’t agree with it, these are the guidelines Disney is putting into play and we should all abide by them out of common courtesy for our fellow park-goers at least.
From what we’ve seen, face mask-wearing in Disney World has been substantially better than almost every other business or public situation we’ve been in, so Disney is obviously doing a good job.
How Long Will Disney World Require Face Masks?
How Long Will Disney Require Masks? I wish we had a definitive answer to that question for you, it would make vacation planning a whole lot easier.
The truth is at this time there is no telling how long face masks will be required to be worn in Disney World. Right now the local health agencies are recommending that people wear them for safety whenever out in public. Disney is being very conservative in this regard and as long as the authorities are recommending it, we think Disney will continue with this measure.
Right now, it doesn’t look like the Disney face mask policy will be changing anytime soon. Recently, Orange County Mayor, Jerry Demings made comments about when they might be lower restrictions for face masks. He responded by saying: “I intend to leave it in place for the foreseeable future because I believe that it is playing a significant role in reducing the spread of the virus within our community.”
This is in line with comments made by other officials, including Dr. Raul Pino, the health officer for the Florida Department of Health in Orange County. He said the mask requirement will likely last “until maybe the spring, or until we have a vaccine.”
That tells us that if you are planning on going to Walt Disney World anytime in 2020 and possibly into 2021, you should plan on the mask policy still being in effect. We’ll let you know as soon as something changes.
Should You Postpone Your Disney Trip?
After reading all this, you may just decide that it’s better to postpone your trip to Walt Disney World until a time when face masks are not required. If you decide that, I totally understand. Especially if I were a guest who only could come down once every few years, I would want to get the most out of my trip, and face masks in my opinion kind of ruin the magic for us.
That being said, we are crazed-Disney fans who have the opportunity to go to the parks often, and we will go anyway, even with the masks. We are missing Disney so much right now that even if it won’t be as great as it usually is, we think it beats staying home.
Ultimately, each family will have to decide what’s best for them. If you are spending thousands of dollars to have one of the trips of your life, you might not want to wrestle with masks and have to deal with being even hotter than what is usual in Florida.
It might not be an issue for a Florida-local who can just go to the parks and do a couple of rides and then go home when they want to. If you are coming from another state or country, you will have to think hard about just what it’s going to be like in the parks all-day and how your experience might not be what you are looking for. In that case, it might be better to wait.
If you want to postpone your trip, the smartest thing would be to put it off until sometime in 2021, or even 2022. That’s when you will have the best chance of going when face masks are not required.
One alternative is to at least book your trip in one of the cooler months of the year (Nov-Feb), this way the heat won’t be so bad if you have to wear one.
Check out our Disney World Crowd Calendar for more information about choosing the best time to go.
Obviously face masks are not the end-all-be-all protection, and if people aren’t following the other regulations Disney puts in-place like sanitizing or washing your hands, then a mask won’t do much good.
Everyone will have to decide when they want to return to the most magical place on Earth. It might be a downer right now because we’ve had a bunch of bad news all in a row recently, and thinking about walking around in Disney World in a mask isn’t the best news we’ve heard in the world.
However, everyone will be able to make their own decision. Whoever doesn’t like the idea, no problem. You are free to go at a future date when these restrictions are not in place. If you are like us and dying to get back in the parks, then it looks like we’ll have to deal with a little inconvenience for a while in order to get back to the place we love so much.
Our guide to Disney World safety might help explain some of the other steps Disney is taking to protect guests.
Let’s hope everyone cooperates and we can then enjoy the parks again without them sometime in the near future.
Yes, they are. All Cast Members and Guests 2 years old or more must wear a face covering in Walt Disney World.
In the theme parks guests can remove their face mask when eating or drinking, or in one of the designated “Relaxation Stations.”
Yes, you do. Guest must wear a face covering on rides, even thrill rides like roller coasters.
Face masks must be worn in all public areas of Walt Disney World except when eating in a restaurant or in the swimming pool. They must be worn throughout the hotel including the lobby and hallways.
There are no exceptions at this time to the face mask policy in Disney World, even for disabilities and medical conditions.
You can wear a face shield in Walt Disney World, but you must also have an acceptable face mask underneath.
Face masks are sold in Disney World outside the parks in vending machines for $2 each. You can also buy a themed face mask with Disney characters on it for $6 or 4 for $20.
I want to know what you think about Cast Members and guests having to wear face masks in Walt Disney World…
- Will wearing a face mask change your decision to go to Disney World?
- What other policies should be in place?
Let us know in the comments section below!
If you enjoyed this article, as always I appreciate it if you’d share it with others via social media. I work hard at making this website into a useful resource for you and your family to plan your visit to the Disney Parks and I hope it can help you! Thanks 🙂