Hurricane Irma to Possibly Affect Walt Disney World Operations, What to Know If You’re Visiting WDW

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Hurricane Irma, a dangerous Category 5 hurricane, could impact Central Florida and operations at Walt Disney World in the coming days.

While it is still too soon to narrow down specifics on the exact path of Irma’s center and eyewall, there is an increasing chance of a major hurricane strike on at least part of South Florida, including the Florida Keys, this weekend. According to the latest NHC forecast, the center of Irma may be very close to South Florida by Saturday night, with conditions going downhill already during the day on Saturday.

While the event is still too far out for projections to be absolutely correct, there is a possibility of impact to the Walt Disney World Resort.

In preparation for the storm, Florida Gov. Rick Scott has declared a state of emergency for all 67 Florida counties ahead of Hurricane Irma.

The number one question we received last year as Hurricane Matthew threatened Orlando was in regards to Walt Disney World’s cancellation and refund policies during these types of events. For this unfamiliar with Walt Disney World’s hurricane policy:

If a hurricane warning is issued by the National Hurricane Center for the Orlando area—or for your place of residence—within 7 days of your scheduled arrival date, you may call in advance to reschedule or cancel your Walt Disney Travel Company Magic Your Way vacation package and most room only reservations (booked directly with Disney) without any cancellation or change fees imposed by Disney.

If you have products and services provided by third-party suppliers included in your vacation—such as airlines, hotels, car rental agencies or vacation insurance companies—you will continue to be responsible for any non-refundable payments, as well as cancellation or change fees assessed by those suppliers. The policy does not apply to certain special events or dining experiences.

This policy also applies to Disney’s Vero Beach Resort or Disney’s Hilton Head Island Resort in the event a hurricane warning is issued for those destinations.

If you have questions or you wish to reschedule your vacation due to a hurricane warning, please call (407) 939-7675. Guests under 18 years of age must have parent or guardian permission to call.

Of course, will continue to provide updates as we get closer to the storm and its projected arrival.



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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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  • Almost the same time frame as Matthew, which ruined my plans for Not-so-scary last year (except in Oct)… Here’s to hoping it will magically turn and leave FL alone.
    -St. Augustine/Jacksonville area

  • I’m planning to go to Walt Disney World on September 10. Please let me know of any cancellations by Disney.

  • Please heed all warnings and be safe. I was in Hurricane back in the 90’s and It’s not very wise to ride it out! Be safe everyone and God be with all affected.

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