When is Universal Studios Reopening? Orlando Plans to Be First Florida Theme Park to Open Back Up

Universal Studios Orlando is set to become the first theme park in Florida to reopen to the public after the Orange County Economic Recovery Task Force approved a proposal for the park to open to the public on June 5.

The park will open for team members on June 1 to test new sanitation procedures and Universal Studios will then open for some guests, like annual pass holders, on June 3-4, as reported by Theme Park Insider.

There will be new health and safety measures in place across the theme park, water park, and restaurants, which Universal Studios staff members will be trained in this weekend.

Once the park reopens, guests will undergo temperature checks before entering and they will be required to wear face masks. Universal Studios will provide free masks for guests who do not bring their own.

To maintain social distancing, there will be limited capacity within the park and at individual attractions, though the capacity percentage has yet to be confirmed. Additionally, guests will have to remain six feet away from other groups in lines and virtual line technology will be used.

Groups that arrive at the park together will be kept together on rides, so members of different households won't be sitting together, and single rider lines won't be available.

Interactive play areas will be closed, and character meet and greets and parades will not take place. There will be little to no water and mist elements used in attractions and on 3D attractions, staff members will hand guests glasses individually.

Universal Studios Orlando Florida
General view of the Grand Opening of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Orlando on June 16, 2010 in Orlando, Florida. Universal Studios Orlando plans to reopen to the public on June 5, 2020. Getty/Gustavo Caballero

Not only will the rides be affected but restaurants will follow new guidelines too. For example, they will use single-use paper menus and mobile ordering, with no self-service options. Guests will be encouraged to use contactless payment with payment options including Google Pay, Apple Pay, and the Universal Orlando app set up.

Volcano Bay, Universal Orlando's water park, will also reopen with enhanced cleaning and a reduced number of tubers in the lazy river, plus social distancing measures in place in the seating areas.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis said at an economic roundtable for state tourism and hospitality leaders in Orlando yesterday: "Some of the attractions that are really good are water parks. The CDC just put out something I think yesterday talking about that they haven't seen evidence that the virus is transmissible in things like pools and water."

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued guidelines for pools, water parks, and hot tubs this week, after saying last month: "Proper operation and maintenance (including disinfection with chlorine and bromine) of these facilities should inactivate the virus in the water."

Yesterday, Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings said on Twitter: "Today after our [Orange County Florida] Economic Recovery Task Force meeting, I signed letters of recommendation for the re-opening of 12 local attractions. Their safety measures and plans were reviewed by our Div. of Building Safety. The letters went to [Gov. Ron DeSantis]' Office. Stay tuned."