Disneyland rolls out welcome mat to out-of-state visitors starting June 15by Adrienne Vincent-Phoenix, staff writer
Non-Californians can visit Disneyland and Disney California Adventure starting June 15, the company announced Wednesday afternoon. Bookings are open now through the Disneyland website, as well as authorized travel planners like MousePlanet travel partner Get Away Today,
This long-awaited announcement comes as the state of California prepares to move past the color-coded tiered system, relax most COVID-19 restrictions and fully reopen its economy. As part of the Beyond the Blueprint plan, the state will drop a residency requirement which had previously limited theme park admission just to California residents.
This is as close as Lisa Baxter-Stiglic could get to Main Street during her last visit to Anaheim, but soon she will be able to enter the gates with other out-of-state visitors. Photo by Lisa Baxter-Stiglic.
June 15 can't come fast enough for Lisa Baxter-Stiglic, who has written two books about the Disneyland Resort, and is a frequent contributor to MousePlanet. Baxter-Stiglic now lives in the Pacific Northwest, and made frequent trips back to Anaheim before the pandemic. During a recent visit to Southern California, the closest she could get to Main Street was a visit to Downtown Disney, where she went just to "breathe in the essence" of the resort.
Hearing the news, Baxter-Stiglic said, "I'm so excited! I've been impatiently waiting for the state to open so I can return 'home!' I just received my [annual pass] refund last week, which I've been saving so I can give it back to Disney."
Visitors will still need to purchase theme park tickets in advance, and make a reservation to visit Disneyland and/or Disney California Adventure. Theme park reservations can now be made 120 days in advance of a visit.
The State of California strongly encourages visitors to be fully vaccinated before attending mega-events like theme parks, or have a recent negative COVID test. Regardless of vaccination or testing status, Disney will require all visitors to wear face coverings throughout their visit.
Last week, Disney said it would end temperature screenings for guests on June 15, though all guidelines relating to physical distancing, masking, and health screenings are still in place for employees at the resort.
Travel-related businesses are thrilled about the prospect of reopening tourism to out-of-state visitors. Bharat Patel and his family own the Castle Inn and Suites right across the street from the Disneyland Resort, and like most hoteliers, were severely impacted by the yearlong closure of the Anaheim theme parks. In aniticipation of a future reopening, Patel told MousePlanet, "We're looking forward to sharing California's hospitality with our out-of-state friends."
Jennifer Dunyon, executive vice president of Get Away Today, echoed those sentiments: "We are thrilled to be able to help welcome everyone back to the Disneyland Resort. In our 30-plus years of business we've never experienced anything like this, and as can't wait to help families get back into the parks." Get Away Today is MousePlanet's travel partner, offering both ticket-only and travel package service for vacation planners.
Knott's Berry Farm and Universal Studios Hollywood have yet to announce when they'll welcome out-of-state visitors, though we expect both parks to make their own updates shortly.
As we previously reported, Sea World started welcoming out-of-state visitors a month ago provided they were fully vaccinated or could show a recent negative COVID test.