The Shanghai Disneyland reopened on May 11 after a complete three-month lockdown due to the COVID-19 crisis. The fun and entertainment retain, but much has changed due social distancing and safety norms. It was a clear glimpse of how the post COVID era will not be the same and we will all have to be conscious about our actions.
Opening of the park
Shanghai Disneyland opened up to the public today. It has been closed for 3 months due to the COVID-19 pandemic around the world. However, things were different this time. People were seen practicing social distancing in the photographs. Some ride entrances had marked squares where people could stand. These squares were about 2 meters apart. People were instructed where they could stand and where they could not stand.
Only single ride cars were present on the attractions or only people from one group could ride together. Everyone apart from a few announcers and park performers were wearing masks. Park employees were also holding up signs reminding people to maintain social distancing and obey distance markers. The entrances of rides all had floor markers indicating safe social distancing.
Guests had procured tickets for the opening day in advance. The guests entering the park were subject to a system of checks and norms. There was thermal screening from time to time and wearing masks were mandatory. The advance ticketing system allowed the park to control the arrival of guests. The guests were let inside in a staggered manner in order not to overcrowd the park. The park was only stipulated to function at 30% capacity while it has a total capacity of 80,000 people.
Joe Schott who is Shanghai Disney Resort’s president said that this was a huge moment. They had taken great care to prepare the park for the guests. The opening signified slight return normalcy after months of being closed. It gave people and businesses hope that things may open up soon. He said that making magic right now was important since the world was reeling under a pandemic. He thanked the patrons for their continued support. Also, he appreciated the staff that had preserved the park in the months for which it was closed. Scott also thanked the enthusiasm for the fans since they came out to visit the park despite the COVID-19 scare. He also appreciated the efforts of medical professionals and frontline workers in combating the COVID-19 pandemic.
The pictures from Shanghai Disneyland portray what the future of all other amusement parks could look like. The advantage is that parks are no longer crowded. This gradual return to business is something that all business establishments are aspiring to do. We have to wait and watch how other countries adopt similar safety measures in terms of social distancing at amusement marks. They also have to take cues from keeping the crowds lesser in number and allow fewer people together in rides.