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Walt’s Disney nixes uneasiness conditions at Florida Gardens and add rear dining programs

May 9, 2023: Changes enter the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida.

On Monday, the company said that, prompted by guest feedback, Disney is updating some park policies to accommodate local and out-of-town visitors better.

Disney World will remove theme park reservation requirements for its date-based tickets beginning Jan. 9, 2024. This reverses a pandemic-era policy requiring guests to plan visits before arriving at the parks by going through a two-step process, which included purchasing a ticket and selecting a reservation date.

Now, there will be only one step: purchase a ticket for a specific date.

Annual allow holders will be required to make reservations for most visits. However, Disney plans to roll out “good-to-go days,” which won’t require park reservations.

The change is in addition to the recently adopted rule that pass holders can visit any of Disney’s Orlando-based theme parks after 2 p.m. without a reservation. The only exclusion is admission to Magic Kingdom on Saturdays and Sundays.

Disney’s most recent string of operational updates is part of its broader strategy to reduce friction points for guests. The company’s theme park division is one of the most lucrative segments of its overall business, and intense customer experiences drive its success.

The House of Mouse looks for ways to improve the guest experience through new rides and attractions, better food options, magical moments with characters or updates to its resorts. The company aims to adapt to customer feedback, including concerns from some guests that the park reservation system was confusing or inconvenient.

As part of the changes announced Monday, Disney also said it is bringing back dining plans for those staying at its resort hotels after Jan. 9, 2024. Disney also announced extending its early theme park entry for hotel guests through 2024.

The company said Monday that it could make more changes moving forward. Disney is looking to address concerns with its Genie and Genie+ itinerary programs launched during the pandemic.

These digital offerings were designed to optimize guest experiences in the parks, permitting them to schedule their days more effectively, with access to estimate wait times and restaurant reservations. Coupled with Lightning Lane, guests also have the option to pay for a shorter wait for Disney’s top attractions.

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Walt’s Disney nixes uneasiness conditions at Florida Gardens and add rear dining programs