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3 Changes at Walt Disney World That Went Into Effect This Past Week

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Change is the only constant thing in life, and even little changes at Walt Disney World can impact your trip. This past week at Walt Disney World our team was on hand to witness three changes. One change was pretty big, an update to Disney’s face covering policy. The two other changes were much smaller, but still something to point out: the price for Disney’s reusable merchandise bags increased, and Disney reinstated the PhotoPass watermark on the on-ride photo screens.

The update to Disney’s face covering policy is a welcome one. When we posted the update on our Facebook page, that guests could remove masks while taking an outdoor photo, we received lots of comments from happy folks ready to enjoy some mask-less photos. Others expressed concern. Would this be a slippery slope for guests to get sloppy with wearing their masks? So far we have not seen any significant change during our daily mask counts in the parks. We share our observations in our daily wait time posts.

EPCOT PhotoPass on April 8, 2021 with Mask Off (Erin Foster)
Guests with Masks Removed for PhotoPass – April 6, 2021

This weekend at EPCOT, a park our team visits multiple times a week, we noticed Disney’s PhotoPass watermark took over most of the on-ride photos for Test Track. This is standard practice for most theme parks anywhere, but it has not been in practice since the July 2020 reopening. Other theme park fans indicate this is the case at other attractions that have on-ride photos on a screen once you disembark the ride.

Watermarked On-Ride Photo at Test Track – April 10, 2021

Finally, shopping at Walt Disney World can lead to lots of plastic bags. Whether you want to do something nice for the environment, or want an easier way to carry your magical merchandise finds, a reusable bag is a nice option. You can also get creative and use one of these reusable bags as a smart way to present a gift. Throw in some fluffed tissue paper, and voila! But the price for the reusable bags has now doubled.

Walt Disney World Reusable Merchandise Bags – Price Increase April 2021
Walt Disney World Reusable Merchandise Bags
Walt Disney World Reusable Merchandise Bags – Large

Small and Medium bags were $1.00 each, now they are $2.00 and $2.50 respectively. And large bags, which hold a substantial amount of stuff, went from $2.00 to $3.00. Still, they can come in handy in certain situations and would even make an affordable souvenir. So, those are the changes we witnessed this week.

What do you think of this week’s changes at Walt Disney World? Let us know in the comments!



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Born and raised in the land of sunshine and dreams come true, Dani is a proud Orlando Native who loves sharing her hometown with others. She's worked in nearly all of Orlando's theme parks, on board Disney Cruise Line, and in hotel management. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram @thisfloridalife

6 thoughts on “3 Changes at Walt Disney World That Went Into Effect This Past Week

  • Prove it would have been far worse. You simply state a conclusion without any data. Because you simply state an unsupported conclusion, I can easily argue that your statistic means masks did not do very much good at all. See how that works?

    Also, the “science “ told us 6 ft. dIstancing was necessary, which we recently found out was simply a made up number.

    Disney follows the “science”? Its policies make no sense. It has “Relaxation Stations” where you can remove your mask. However, in the restaurants you can’t remove your mask before your food arrives? Tell me, where’s the “science” in that? The virus won’t enter the relaxation station?

    Finally, perhaps high risk folks shouldn’t go to a theme park. Why should their selfish choice dictate my behavior?

  • The people concerned about being asked to follow CDC guidance and refuse to wear masks perhaps should not go to a large theme park. 563,000 Americans have died in the past 13 months from this and it would have been far worse if we hadn’t worn masks and practiced social distancing. I’m glad Disney listened to the scientists.

  • The people concerned with people not wearing masks perhaps should not go to a large theme park. We need to take our freedoms back. There were germs before this, and there will be germs after. Stop living in fear.

    • Yes!!!!

  • I hate to say it, but I’m not a fan of the WDW reusable bags. They are flimsy and don’t last nearly as long as the ones you buy in any grocery or convenience store.

  • A dollar here a dollar there. I used to purchase the reusable bags. Picked up a few last month. But the way they keep raising the price of everything is beginning to add up to some serious cash. The price of a bottle of water is stupid.

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