PHOTOS: New Security Screening Procedures in Place at the Magic Kingdom

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With the move of the Magic Kingdom welcome to show to Cinderella Castle, it has allowed the park to move it security screening points out further and completely alter the way it screens guest entering.

Upon entering the park this morning, we noticed that a single bag check table and metal detector were placed at the end of the path from Disney’s Comtemporary Resort.  While they did use the old security screening points before the park opened this morning, they were indeed using the new set up by the time we left around 9:30 AM.

The new set up includes bag check tables ahead of the metal detectors. All guests are now being made to go through the metal detectors. This area has been used for security screening on select days over the last few months, but it appears it will now be a regular occurrence.

What now has to be seen as a true Resort guest benefit, guests walking over from the Contemporary have their own private bag check table and metal detector with little to no wait. These guests can then proceed directly to the turnstiles for the Magic Kingdom after this screening.

The center section of security checkpoints and metal detectors are now used exclusively for guests arriving via the monorail or Resort launches. Guests coming off of the ferry boat will have to go through the new security area over to the right. This method is only used once crowd levels rise to a certain point later in the morning. If you arrive early enough, all guests we’ll be going through the center security checkpoints.

Overall, this seems somewhat more efficient than the procedures that were already in place and I applaud the Magic Kingdom for trying their best to expedite the wait times of those coming into the park. Will it work? That remains to be seen, but only time will tell.


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About the author

Tom Corless

Tom has been regularly visiting the Walt Disney World® Resort from the time he was 4 months old. While he has made countless visits in the last 28 years, he did not become a truly active member in the Disney fan community until the summer of 2007, when he decided to launch the WDW News Today website and podcast. Tom has since become an Orlando-local and is a published author on Walt Disney World.
Contact Tom at [email protected]


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  • Could this be temporary? I figured they were doing it due to the officer involved shooting earlier this morning. Last I heard the suspect is still on the loose.

  • You are wrong. This slows down park entry a ton! Huge mistake. They were only selectively screening guests when we went at thanksgiving and those metal detectors were way backed up. Think of what it’s like at the airport but worse because hand screening bags is time consuming.

    • And why is that a problem? Security should be – and is – a top priority for Disney. If waiting 10 minutes to go through security is my inconvenience for the day, I’ll take it.

      • Security needs to be a high priority, but it needs to be balanced against guest experience.

        Obsessive concern with security and safety over all else would mean that the parks should be closed.

        If that’s not practical, perhaps a mandatory uniform of speedo or bikini with no bags allowed. You can buy shirts and pants inside the park if you so choose.

        Absurd you say? To those of us who don’t in fact live our lives in a perpetual state of fear, security theater is exactly this, just less obvious.

        The MK is huge. All the parks are. There are many ways to sneak a weapon or even explosive device in, and will always be. I’m not advocating that they should just give up, but if I’ve paid what it costs for a day at the MK I don’t expect to spend much time waiting to just get into the place.

        • I completely agree Walter. You’ll see a lot of people say “I’m happy to wait for security.” But what they don’t realize is there’s a huge difference between feeling safer and actually being safer. Large unscreened gatherings of people (waiting for security) actually make you LESS safe and present an easy target. You see this playing out in foreign airport attacks. I detest security theater because it makes me less safe and wastes my time. But at least the upside here is that they appear to be spreading the “stage” out a bit more and pushing it farther out, which is a good idea. Still I can’t help but look at the whole production and think to myself “this is idiotic.”

      • Kevin, security is NOT a priority, even a top 10 at Disney. Illusion of security, public relations, and their image to generate sales though is a priority.

  • Florida is one of the most liberal gun law states, including the right to carry a concealed weapon. Perhaps if there were better laws regarding guns – we would not need metal detectors at the happiest place on earth.

    • You can’t carry a weapon into a Disney park, concealed or not, permit or not. It is private property.

      • The point hes making is Disney’s “private property” is in a state that has concealed weapon rights. Regardless of the rules of a private company. Not to mention Disney, like a mall, or a airport attracts a ton of people. No matter where you go, if its popular and public, we arent safe. Just the fact that a shooting took place in a less secured part of the airport means nothing. Sure its impossible to bring weapons on a plane or even into a theme park, but that doesnt stop someone from shooting 50+ people in the parking lot while riding the tram to the entrance. Whats stopping someone from pulling a machine gun out their car? Theres barely any security in the parking lot thatll stop them in time.

  • I’m ok with the extra security if it keeps my family and myself safe. There have always been metal detectors, U just didn’t know it. This was told to me by a Disney employee. I would rather have to wait a little longer to get into the park than to have something bad happen for everyone there.

    • I’d buy your argument if what they did actually did ANYTHING to make it safe. It’s to do what you just posted. Make you FEEL safe. They aren’t putting resources into actual making it safe, that would cost a lot more money, and that’s not Disney’s way. They play PR and make you feel good, but honestly, the metal detectors and screening is a total joke.

  • What about those who can’t go through those metal detectors? My hubby has an implanted pacemaker and those type of detectors can turn it off. Is there an alternate “pat down” area?

    • While they may not have an area for it, Disney will always accommodate guests with health concerns. If you tell them you are concerned, I’m sure an alternative can be arranged.

  • Unfortunately this is the world we live now, we just have to get use to extra security, particularly in a country where guns are readily accessible.

  • LAME. Does NOTHING for safety. It’s all a show. You can get in weapons back stage, drop one over a railing to pick up later, cast members, contractors, most people entering are not screened. Or take Disney’s own express service bus. Silly. Disney needs to get a clue how they’re running their parks.

    • You hit the nail on the head. There are other ways to circumvent security as well. Worse than not making the parks safer is that security theater screenings make people less safe by bundling large groups of people together.

      If Disney were truly interested in making their parks safer they’d spend the money for Israeli-style airport security. But they won’t do that. As such they should be aware that their current security theater makes me less likely to visit their parks. Also they’re not any less likely to incur a lawsuit from my me and my family should something occur that they could have potentially prevented with actual security.

      Either do security right or don’t do it at all. I sincerely doubt if they just completely did away with bag checks and metal detectors if there would be any significant impact on attendance in their parks. Think of all the money they could save.

      • AGREE They do this secret to make guests feel safe. Zero effect on actual safety. Disney in fact a sitting duck shooting gallery for anyone who wants to.

        Just read some of the comments! Some people actually believe it makes a difference. Sad. Sucker born every second. That’s the crowd Disney needs to maintain though with everything they keep discontinuing as far as shows, parades, rides and all.

  • I think each monorail resort should have their own screening. For all the others using the parking lot, Disney should convert the dated ticket booths into screening areas. Use of conveyer belts with X-ray technology (similar to airport screeners) to move it quickly. There is already shade there and trams can be staggered so that only two trams can drop off at a time. It’s got to move away from the front of the park. It takes away form the experience.

    • None of this makes sense when the staff, contractors and side entrances aren’t screened, much less monitored. Could list half a dozen spots you can get your family, much less weapons, into all 4 parks. Disney doesn’t take safety seriously. This is just a show kids.

  • Safety all a perception, and a good percent of population keeps their head buried in the sand. No matter where one stands on carrying guns, or gun rights, what Disney is doing by ‘pseudo security screens’ is factually making the parks less safe. People let their guard down. And Disney will NEVER pay money or sacrifice their sugary image to REALLY make it more safe. Not gonna happen.

  • I have to agree with Mark above. This is just security theater. The mass of people packed together waiting OUTSIDE of these security check points are sitting ducks for some idiot who wants to kill a lot of people. Most sheep will just say YAY make me feel safer but think about this for a second. A person who wants to kill a lot of people and cause a lot of panic is actually being handed their golden opportunity here and Disney is really making people less safe by bunching them all together here. Ask yourself, where is the biggest gathering of people in any park other than perhaps a queue to see Elsa? It’s right outside these security checkpoints. Have you seen any of the horrible pictures of this place on a busy day when its just a sea of humanity waiting to get through the stupid bag checks? Heck some moron could get on a monorail at the TTC with a bomb and potentially take out everyone on it in one shot. Why isn’t there a bag check and or metal detector before getting on the monorail? What about the buses? Should everyone have to go through a metal detector or bag check before boarding a bus? Where do you draw the line? The random checks are a huge joke, they need to rework the entry points to efficiently screen everyone without creating a huge bottleneck.

    • I agree. No need to live in fear though. No need to live in denial either. Answer is, Disney isn’t really doing JACK to really protect people behind the scenes. I can give many places for people to enter the park easily, but won’t. Folks, this is another sales gimmick, to make people ‘feel safer’. Our studies show if you feel safe, you’re more likely to open the wallet. End of story.

      • Also gives Disney excuse when something happens (and it inevitably will) to say ‘look at all we did to try and prevent this, our thoughts and prayers are with the survivors of this senseless tragedy’

  • Unfortunately due to Muslim terrorists this is the world we live in, I’m glad Disney is putting this much effort to protect us.

  • This is nothing but security theater to make people feel “safe.” There is one word that describes people who want these screenings: CHICKEN. If Disney had any sense they’d remove the metal detectors under the grounds they are a company of honor and say “Nobody…calls us…chicken.” Nobody likes a chicken.

  • They need to concentrate on security in the park, my daughter was attacked and went directly to an security officer at the park that simple walked away from her.

    • Someone could rape your daughter, and unless Disney think’s it will bring them bad Public Relations or cost them money, they couldn’t care less. Disney really couldn’t care less about security. All for show my friend in hopes that you feel safe.

  • I think the metal detectors are a good idea; last year we went there and I wasn’t clear about all the security stuff yet(it has been a long time since we were at Disney)–out of nowhere a security guard literally ran up right near me then went to the side of me where I couldn’t see him—–scared me half to death!!!!! and immediately asked me if I was on medications–then directed me to another guy and told me I was going to be searched. I think the metal detectors is a better idea than sneaking up on a person from the side. He’s lucky I didn’t accidentally use my self-defense class stuff on him out of being so startled…..I couldn’t help it—my self defense training put me into fight or flight mode and I almost got myself needlessly into trouble.When literally I had just gone through the regular baggage check and was still grabbing my bag.—you don’t expect someone out of nowhere to literally be running after you and then dragging you to the side…….All in all it turned out okay, but for a couple of seconds I really was freaking out…..and that’s not like me. I think the metal detectors will get people more used to this….you know, like at the airport.

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