By Holley Long
If you, like many, long for the day when you can visit any of Walt Disney World’s four theme parks without first booking a reservation at the park, you will be one step closer to that day come April.
Because on April 18, Disney World annual passholders will be able to visit any of the parks after 2 p.m., no reservation required.
What is the WDW Park Reservation System?
The Disney World park reservation system began in 2020 after the resort and theme parks shut down for four months during the COVID-19 pandemic. As a way to control occupancy, anyone who visited the parks needed to both purchase valid admission for the day and schedule their visit online by selecting the park they’d be going to and the date on which they’d visit.
If guests have an annual pass or ticket with Park Hopper benefits, they’re able to visit more than one park a day, but only after 2 p.m. and only if they first visit the park for which they made a reservation.
What Does the Change Mean?
The park reservation system change means annual passholders no longer need to reserve a spot at a park if they choose to visit in the late afternoon or evening. However, if they want to visit a park in the morning, they will still need to make a reservation.
Another caveat: if annual passholders want to visit Magic Kingdom over the weekend, they need to book a spot. Reservations will still be required to visit Magic Kingdom on Saturdays and Sundays, no matter the time.
What about guests without annual passes?
At this time, Disney has not made an announcement regarding when guests without annual passes can expect a change to the reservation system. According to a Disney Parks Blog post, the reservation system is important to continue managing park attendance.
While the change is a small adjustment, it is a step in the right direction for those who wish for more flexibility during their days at Disney’s theme parks. And with updates always rolling in from Walt Disney World, there’s hope for the day that the reservation system is relaxed further, so all can enjoy their time at the parks without hindrance.
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