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Disney Hotel Occupancy Rates Dropping Fast as Guests Cancel Walt Disney World Vacations Due to Florida COVID-19 Cases

Just a few days ago, Disney CEO Bob Chapek stated the following about the impact of the Delta variant on their theme park business:

“In terms of the Delta variant, we see strong demand for our parks continuing.”

Disney CEO Bob Chapek

Despite this claim, Walt Disney World is seeing a definite impact from cancellations and unwillingness to travel by tourists as the summer winds down.

According to internal sources, hotel occupancy on Disney property was expected to be at 93% this upcoming weekend. It is now expected to be at just 65%. Overall, they are seeing occupancy drop about 10% week over week.

Similar numbers are being reported by non-Disney hotels in the area as well, at least those we spoke to.

With school starting back up in most of the United States, and with this downturn in travel, the Walt Disney World theme parks are noticeably less busy right now. In fact, Boarding Groups for Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance were available until 4pm on one evening, and eventually, they even allowed guests in without a Boarding Group. This is the first time this has ever happened at Walt Disney World.

As always, keep following WDWNT for all of your Disney Parks news, and for the absolute latest, follow WDW News Today on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

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Robert
Robert
1 month ago

I don’t necessarily think the amount of cases in Florida is the issue because the California counterpart is also pretty slow, also in both states most schools have already started and without annual passes there is less willingness to go, and lastly many people don’t want to go primarily having their entire families be in masks inside which is not worth paying the big bucks…

Joe
Joe
1 month ago
Reply to  Robert

Totally agree

Deanna Lambiase
Deanna Lambiase
1 month ago
Reply to  Robert

I agree. Many friends of mine are not renewing their annual passes because of the park reservation system and masks.

Tom T
Tom T
1 month ago

I think lying to investors and providing misguidance is a lawsuit waiting to happen. The cancellations have been happening for weeks yet last week Chapek states to investors attendance has never been stronger. That was a lie based on the facts the company had at their disposal.

brian
brian
1 month ago
Reply to  Tom T

not really lying, he was presenting the financial data that showed uptick, and that the parks were self sufficient for the first time in 18 months.

Walt Disney
Walt Disney
1 month ago
Reply to  Tom T

Stop it… that is a false statement

Tada
Tada
1 month ago
Reply to  Tom T

Chapek did say cancellations were related to group bookings.

Karen Taylor - Steward
Karen Taylor - Steward
1 month ago
Reply to  Tom T

Chapek is making it a park for the rich, not what Walt Disney wanted when he created disnay parks Its definitely not magical, but money making & targeting for the rich disney wanted every family to be able to come to his parks, but it’s got so expensive with nothing to offer those that pay that extra on going to Disney hotels We were booked for Sept 2020, then reschedule for Sept 2021 due to corvid, but cancelled, we were going to book for 2024 but no way would we pay extra to pay for rides when we pay enough… Read more »

just awful
just awful
1 month ago

Not to mention USA not allowing any foreign travelers LEGALLY that is to our country.

brian
brian
1 month ago
Reply to  just awful

Is this english?

Chris
Chris
1 month ago

It could also be people responding to the face mask requirements. I know a few people who pushed back trips for that reason and were pretty vocal about it. Of course, it could argued that the face mask requirement is there because of the Delta variant, thus that would still be the reason. I see no reason to believe that masks will be required once case rates decline (heavily at this point). Especially if they do start distributing the vaccine to children this fall, there’s a light at the end of the tunnel. Unfortunately though, for the people I’ve talked… Read more »

Drew
Drew
1 month ago

Or maybe it’s because vaccinated people don’t want to wear a mask at Disney World, especially at those new prices.

Michele McAdams
Michele McAdams
1 month ago
Reply to  Drew

Some people are still getting covid even if they have been vaccinated and wear a mask everywhere they go. One of our veterinarians wife just tested positive for covid and our vet has been having the same symptoms as her. Just upper respiratory cold like etc. She is a school teacher and they are trying to get back this week for school starting. At least they may not get as sick with the vaccine, but they do have 2 small children.

Jan
Jan
1 month ago

Or I don’t know, Covid is a factor, yes … But it continues to be light on entertainment. Hours are not late. And upcoming late hours are behind paywalls. Maybe the plan to reduce crowding and demand is working.

Gabrielle Wolfes
Gabrielle Wolfes
1 month ago

So when will they begin to discount their tickets in attempts to garnish more visitors? That may be their only option.

Katie
Katie
1 month ago

I’m ready to book a trip when their mask policies are lifted.

Jean Gibson
Jean Gibson
1 month ago
Reply to  Katie

For sure it’s way to hot to wear a mask there.

Tony
Tony
30 days ago
Reply to  Katie

I went , wore my mask and had a freaking blast!!

Shellie Karm
Shellie Karm
1 month ago

There are still no resorts open now for the week I’m going… Can’t be too bad.

name
name
1 month ago

that’s funny. been looking at dates for disney resorts for month of October and all sold out.

LaVon Leppo
LaVon Leppo
1 month ago
Reply to  name

My resort has openings.

Lou
Lou
1 month ago

We’re still on for next Sunday-Friday at Disney World. 3 out of 4 of us have had Covid, we’re all fully vaccinated and we’ve been used to wearing masks for the past 17 months. It hopefully looks like we’ll have short waits.

Mike M
Mike M
1 month ago

I think it is too early to speculate that this is all due to Delta. There was also a slight potential of a tropical storm hitting the area. You also mention that school is back in for a large portion of the Disney guest segment. Let’s wait a month and see what that brings. People have been reporting on Delta in Florida for over a month, now.

CHRIS
CHRIS
1 month ago

When border restrictions get extended this week and it passes the 30 days to cancel, we’ll see the full impact on the October 1st anniversary bookings.

Corbin
1 month ago

…You don’t think this could POSSIBLY be because of 3 tropical storms (Yes I know none of them are actually a threat but public perception is different)? Or that this is typically when things slow down until HHN and Thanksgiving? Please stop with the sensationalism.

Mike
Mike
1 month ago

Masks.

Just did 2 weeks in WDW.

Horrible.

Magic gone.

35 years is being an UBER fan.

Grew up near Disneyland.

So much of a fan my non-Disney wife couldn’t handle WDW talk until 1 week out!

Stack of AP’s 1-inch thick.

I’ve had enough.

Between the snide CM comments about masks and the WOKEness factor, Disney has lost its family friendly vibe.

Never before have I walked away feeling like I wasted thousands of $$$$.

Never again.

Victor balderaz
1 month ago
Reply to  Mike

Hello Mike ….. I’m Vic and simply wanting to ask …. Is it really that bad …. I have a trip planned for the 29th of this month … Here in calif.

Jean Gibson
Jean Gibson
1 month ago

I went to DL 1st timer ever in July. We didn’t have to wear mask then but I definitely would not have been comfortable in the heat and all the walking you do wearing one. You had to order most of your food thru an app and stand in line for take out food. There were no characters out except when you 1st came in for like 15 min and they were all up at the train. Absolutely didn’t see any other throughout the park all day. Not even Star wars Land. I definitely wasn’t impressed. I much prefer Universal.

Billy
Billy
1 month ago
Reply to  Mike

Awesome. As a CM. We don’t want people like you to attend. You will not be missed and we will all have a better time with out you! Snide mask comment……let us be more clear…your not special put your damn mask on and have a Magical day!

Billy2
Billy2
1 month ago
Reply to  Billy

Cm speak to guest that way now? What’s your last name Billy? Bet you wont throw that out there.

WH Plumber
WH Plumber
1 month ago
Reply to  Billy

Have a Magical day is Disney talk for F Off

T.H.
T.H.
30 days ago
Reply to  Billy

“your” not good at grammar.

Kris
Kris
1 month ago
Reply to  Mike

It is what you make it. Mask up inside and have fun, its that simple. If you’re not ok with masks then don’t let the turnstile hit you on the backside on your way out.

Rambo
Rambo
1 month ago
Reply to  Mike

Also just got back from a two week trip with our APs. Completely agree that there’s an issue with value for the money. Didn’t mind the masks inside at all. In fact, put us at ease from the large population lying about vaccination status. I wouldn’t want to be herded like cattle (like is common at Disney) if 1/5 people were testing positive for an extra contagious and severe flu/pneumonia, either. Thanks for stepping away if you feel the magic is gone and wearing a piece of clothing to lessen sickness is too much for you. At the very least,… Read more »

Josh
Josh
1 month ago
Reply to  Mike

Sadly, it’s probably going to be years before the magic returns, if at all. Disney parks are headed for an economical downfall, I feel, with them removing the magic and raising prices. The overall experience of getting the most for your money is not there currently. Obviously they will continue to make money but they have to pull back on the experience because of the numbers, but their mistake is raising the price at the same time. That’s not an incentive for people on the fence about visiting the parks. Obviously people can still have a great time there, but… Read more »

Michele Anzivino
Michele Anzivino
1 month ago
Reply to  Mike

Thinking of letting my pass go when it expires. Every ride reminds me of something magical that they took away for political correctness. Magic gone.. and the masks……universal may be the big winner here

LizS
LizS
1 month ago

Oh does including others takes the magic from you? Spoken in true entitlement! Sorry them being more inclusive makes you upset. Out of all the things to be upset about. Oh and masks bother you too, not a surprise!

Michelle Fassler
Michelle Fassler
25 days ago
Reply to  Mike

So Disney can only be friendly to families like yours? Have a magical day, dreamer!

Robert
Robert
1 month ago

Chapek can lie all he wants about this, but we all know it’s because there is no magic left in the billionaire’s club known as WDW. I’d be shocked if the board votes to keep him in power.

jeanpennie
jeanpennie
1 month ago

We were there in April and had to be fully masked. We decided to come back for a weekend to do Boo Bash and Food & Wine and thought we’d be able to be maskless since were fully vaxxed. I’m disappointed that we will be masked at times but we are not worried about traveling again. We’ve worked non-stop since this all started anyway. Thirty days til WDW!!!

Last edited 1 month ago by jeanpennie
Pat
Pat
1 month ago

This is the time of year that UK visitors flock to the parks but we can’t come. Does this account for some of the low numbers?

Karen Taylor - Steward
Karen Taylor - Steward
1 month ago
Reply to  Pat

We were due to go Sept 2020, then reschedule to Sept 2021, tui cancelled again, we got our refund, was going to rebook in 2024, but Disney has lost the appeal the disney hotels don’t offer nothing to stay their no disney dining, fasspasses gone, no deals at all, we in UK pay over 10k to get to florida, stay in a Disney resort, pay a fortune to get into parks & now they slap on extra cost for rides, why we pay so much just to enter a park when you have to pay extra to ride the rides… Read more »

Melissa
Melissa
1 month ago

Yes, we canceled our trip due to COVID. Supposed to be leaving tomorrow, but with unvaccinated kids, we aren’t willing to risk it. Will try again next year.

Theduke
Theduke
1 month ago

Universal Studio’s and Islands of Adventure was packed Thursday. No problems with attendance there. We dropped our Disney passes and opted to go with Universal this year and could not have been happier.