ORLANDO, Fla. - When the theme parks at Universal Orlando Resort reopen to the public on June 5, guests must follow new safety protocols, including wearing masks, getting their temperature checked upon entry and observing social distancing.
During a meeting with the Orange County Task Force on Thursday, Universal Orlando Resort presented its plan for reopening after months of being shut down because of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
Officials said the opening would be gradual and would manage capacity across the resort, including within attractions, restaurants and stores.
Universal Orlando said it will open in phases.
On June 1 and 2, officials would open the parks to team members to test the new safety protocols.
Following that, on June 3 and 4, invited guests and some annual passholders would be allowed to enter.
Then on June 5, the parks would reopen to the general public.
By Friday afternoon, Universal Orlando Resort received approval from both Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings and Governor Ron DeSantis to begin its phased reopening plan.
All three parks, Universal Studios Florida, Islands of Adventure and Volcano Bay, will reopen.
They have been closed since March 16.
CityWalk has already reopened.
Attendance will be managed and controlled.
In Universal's announcement, the resort said that guests must follow the park's guidelines in addition to the CDC's guidelines.
This includes several new safety measures at the parks, which will cover three areas: Screening, spacing and sanitization.
Key measures that guests can expect when visiting the parks include:
AT THE ENTRANCE AND THROUGHOUT THE PARKS
- Mandatory face coverings for all guests and team members. Those without a mask will be offered one for free. Stores will also sell face coverings.
- Social distancing guidelines must be observed. Audio messages and signage will remind guests to follow social distancing and other safety protocols.
- Temperature checks are required for all park guests and team members before coming on-site. Those with temperatures of 100.4 or greater will be denied entry.
- Staggered parking will be in place, leaving one to two spaces between vehicles. Valet options are closed.
- Managed and reduced daily park attendance.
- Increased cleaning disinfection of restrooms and other frequently touched locations that go beyond Universal's existing cleaning procedures.
- Social distancing practices throughout the parks.
- Managed and reduced attraction ridership.
- Increased cleaning disinfection of ride vehicles and other frequently touched spots that go beyond Universal's existing cleaning procedures.
- Social distancing practices within attractions and queues.
- Virtual lines will be used at select attractions.
- Single rider lines will be eliminated.
- Water elements on attractions are reduced or closed entirely.
- Interactive play areas will be closed.
- Post-show meet-and-greets will be closed but performers can remain on stage for photos.
- Every other locker will be disabled and guests will be pulled into locker areas by team members.
RESTAURANTS AND STORES
- Managed and reduced show attendance and restaurant seating.
- Increased cleaning disinfection of food locations and other frequently touched locations that go beyond Universal's existing cleaning procedures.
- Social distancing practices at restaurants and stores.
- Cashless payment options and "no-touch" policies when possible. Mobile food ordering will also be available.
- Menus at restaurants will be single-use only. There will be no buffet or self-serving options and only individually packaged condiments will be offered.
- Mandatory face coverings for all team members.
- Temperature checks are required for all team members before coming on-site. Those with temperatures of 100.4 or greater will be denied entry.
- Team members who are 65 or older are encouraged to stay home.
- Desk spacing and continued work from home options are in place.
- Staggered parking in employee parking garages.
- Team members are encouraged to avoid crowds during their time off without the proper distancing.
More of the preventative measures being taken by Universal Orlando Resort are shown below.
Universal Orlando Resort advises that guests evaluate their own risk before they visit the parks. They do not currently recommend that older adults or individuals who are high-risk or have serious underlying medical conditions visit the destination, especially as people with no symptoms can still spread coronavirus if they are infected.
"Any interaction with the general public poses an elevated risk of being exposed to COVID-19 and Universal cannot guarantee guests will not be exposed during their visit," the resort said.
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