In theme park news this week, Disney followed Universal’s lead, again, and Seaworld lost a bid to buy a chain of theme parks.
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Disney Follows Universal’s Mask Policy
Universal Orlando Resort announced this week that its revamped mask policy would loosen rules for those who have been fully vaccinated.
“Here are the latest safety updates for your visit.
Face coverings are optional for fully vaccinated guests. For guests who have not been vaccinated, face coverings are encouraged while indoors – including restaurants, shops and indoor hotel public areas.
We do not require proof of vaccinations
We remain focused on maintaining the highest cleanliness and sanitization standards” – Universal Orlando
The prior policy enacted during the rise of the omicron variant had been that all guests, regardless of vaccination status, must wear masks in any line queue (indoor or outdoor) as well as anywhere indoors. This move no longer requires those who are fully vaccinated to mask anywhere on-site nor does it ask for proof of vaccination. There was no mention of boosters in either policy.
Disney, who has been copying and pasting Universal Orlando’s policy changes for months, announced its own changes:
“Face coverings are optional for fully vaccinated Guests in both outdoor and indoor locations. We expect Guests who are not fully vaccinated to continue wearing face coverings in all indoor locations, including indoor attractions and theaters. Face coverings are still required by all Guests (ages 2 and up) on enclosed Disney transportation, including Disney buses, monorails, and Disney Skyliner.” – Disney
Disney mask policy has differed in the past from Florida to California as did muncipal and state regulations. However, this particular change aligns both Disney Parks on face mask policy. California, at the time of reopening theme parks declared that guests shouldn’t scream on roller coasters, so to say there were material differences between the states and parks would be an understatement.
The wink and nod from Universal (and subsequently, Disney) is that they trust their guests that if they are not wearing a mask it is because they are fully vaccinated, no need to trust and verify with paperwork.
SeaWorld Attempts to Buy Cedar Point, Loses
In other theme park news, SeaWorld attempted to buy Cedar Fair, home to a number of smaller theme parks across the country including Knott’s Berry Farm, and California’s Great America in California, and the namesake park, Cedar Point in Sandusky, Ohio.
The $3.4bn offer placed a small premium on FUN, the company’s publicly-traded stock, from it’s market cap of about $3.2bn prior. The Cedar Fair board rejected the buyout offer. Seaworld, which no longer uses captured and trained marine life in shows, is looking to diversify its park holdings. It will have to look elsewhere for the time being.
Universal has become the leader for theme park policies and Disney is playing catch up. What’s become clear is that mask policy is now based on public sentiment rather than science. Perhaps it always was. Still, today there are more than 100,000 COVID cases (though declining from peaks weeks ago), and daily death counts that rival some of the worst days of the pandemic. SeaWorld may again try to buy Cedar Fair (a smart purchase) but will need to make a more substantial offer to turn the board.
What do you think?
Congratulations to Disney for waking up to what the majority of customers wanted. At this point in most of America, airports are the only places masks are required.
Flying in and out of 4 airports this week I noticed more and more customers not wearing masks until boarding with no mask police saying anything. Now the big question is will the government read the writing on the wall next month or will they be stubborn?
Brandon will listen to the all mighty Fauci and make masks permanenet next month
I wouldn’t be surprised if 2-3 surgical masks N95s become mandatory. Brandon does not care what anyone other than Fauci thinks
The creativity here is really astounding
Apparently we have grown tired of doing easy things to protect those around us. Viva la virus i guess
So wearing your own N95 mask isn’t enough? Do you really believe you are at a higher risk when the other guy wears a cloth mask as opposed to no mask? Amazing, honestly amazing there are people that think like this out there. No, I’m sorry, not amazing, it’s sad just sad.
If pharmaceutical companies, globalist politicians, money grubbing hospitals, and academics didn’t tell us about Covid, we wouldn’t know that it exists. The only people who have increased death rates compared to 2019 and earlier are those who are tripled vaccinated.
That’s a big fat lie JW and you know it.
Watch fox news much?
Go ahead, puff up your argument by calling me names…..
Consider yourself fortunate you haven’t lost friends and family to covid. I haven’t been so fortunate so maybe my perspective is a little different.
Peru has the highest death rate per million, but we hear almost nothing about Peru. Why?
Africa, India, and the Middle East have extremely low Covid vaccination rates yet the mortality rate has also been extremely low. Why?
Petty Leftists and Rightists cherry pick a couple of examples to prove they know everything and that those who disagree with them know nothing.
Meanwhile, Tobacco killed over 7 million people in 2021, as it does every year, but neither Leftists nor Rightists care, because they only want to argue about Covid.
Sarah Nelson already whining that the mandate must be extended