Disney World Is Bringing Back Its Park Hopper Pass in 2021

Start your day with a safari ride in Animal Kingdom and end it with a delicious dinner in Epcot.

guests stop to take a selfie at Magic Kingdom Park
Photo: Kent Phillips/Walt Disney World Resort via Getty

2021 is already looking brighter.

After a year spent mostly in lockdown, everyone is eager for a bit of good news and the promise of something new in January. Disney is delivering.

On Friday, the theme park announced that it will bring back its Park Hopper benefits, starting Jan. 1, 2021 — a perk that disappeared over the summer as a COVID-19 precaution.

The Park Hopper allows ticket or annual pass holders to visit more than one Disney park per day. Visitors will be able to begin their morning with the wildlife at Disney's Animal Kingdom Theme Park, spice up their afternoon with a "Star Wars" themed visit to Disney's Hollywood Studios and spend their evening at the Cinderella Castle of the Magic Kingdom Park and catch some magical fireworks.

In order to take advantage of the new benefit, guests will have to plan in advance. The system requires that visitors make a Disney Park Pass reservation for the first park they plan on visiting. They must enter the park that they have a reservation for before they can visit another. At this time, reservations are not required to enter a second park, but that could change throughout the year, Disney explained in its announcement.

Park Hopper hours are, for now, scheduled to begin at 2 p.m. and will end at the parks' close at 8 p.m. The hours may change throughout the year.

The pre-visit reservation is required due to COVID-19 regulations — and visitors might not be able to park hop if one of their intended parks is already at capacity.

Visitors will still be subject to the same COVID-19 precautions that have been in place since Walt Disney World reopened in July. Temperature checks, social distancing and a ban on eating and drinking while walking around the park are all in effect. Although most attractions are open, the water parks at the resort are not expected to reopen until at least March 2021.

While Florida's Walt Disney World is open at this time, Disneyland in California is unlikely to open until at least early 2021, due to state coronavirus restrictions. And Disneyland in Paris temporarily closed in October, after Europe entered a second lockdown. The park intends to reopen for the holidays but will temporarily close again in early 2021.

Cailey Rizzo is a contributing writer for Travel + Leisure, currently based in Brooklyn. You can find her on Twitter, on Instagram, or at caileyrizzo.com.

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