The Disneyland theme park will reopen to residents outside California in mid-June, when the state is expected to fully reopen its economy.
Disney’s theme parks and resort complex, located in Anaheim, reopened on April 30 after closing for more than a year because of the coronavirus pandemic, but only to residents of California and in groups no larger than three households.
The state continued to bring its winter wave of Covid-19 infections under control, which allowed for the loosening of restrictions on businesses and gatherings. California has averaged about one new Covid-19 infection per 100,000 people a day over the past week, the lowest per capita rate in the US, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and down from a peak of about 114 in early January.
“We’re pleased to announce that beginning June 15 2021, we will once again be able to welcome travelers from outside the state of California back to our theme parks,” Disney Parks wrote on its blog on Wednesday afternoon.
Gavin Newsom, California’s Democratic governor, has targeted June 15 as the day the state will fully reopen its economy. Mark Ghaly, the state’s health director, announced last week that requirements for physical distancing and operating capacity restrictions would be dropped from that date. The adoption of new guidelines from the CDC allowing fully vaccinated people to forgo face masks in almost all indoor and outdoor situations would be delayed until June 15, Ghaly said.
Bob Chapek, Disney’s chief executive, was reported by media to have told an industry conference earlier this week he believed Disneyland and Florida’s Disney World would be operating at full capacity by autumn.
Disney World had been subject to the less-onerous restrictions governing its state and reopened at 35 per cent capacity in July last year.
In the 12 months ended September 28 2019, Disney’s most recent full fiscal year before the onset of the pandemic, the company generated about 38 per cent of its $69.6bn in revenues and 45 per cent of its $14.9bn in operating income from its parks, experiences and products business.