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Poll finds 78% of US parents won’t visit theme parks in 2020

walt disney world reopening

US guests are not yet ready to visit theme parks amid the coronavirus pandemic, as a poll by Morning Consult finds that 78 percent say it’s too soon to return to parks in summer 2020.

Theme parks across the US are reopening following closures in response to COVID-19, but a new poll by Morning Consult and The Hollywood Reporter suggests that attractions will find it difficult to lure visitors to return.

US parents won’t visit theme parks this summer

morning consult theme parks surveyThe poll surveyed 962 parents in the US between July 23 and July 26, with just 18 percent saying they are interested in visiting a theme park this summer, and 61 percent saying they’re “not interested at all”.

26 percent of parents said they would be interested in visiting Walt Disney World Resort, while 24 percent said they would be interested in heading to Disneyland.

Fortunately, the industry looks set to improve next summer, with 47 percent saying they would consider visiting a theme park in 2021.

Limited capacity at theme parks inspired the most confidence among participants, with 45 percent saying a limited number of guests would make them more likely to visit.

39 percent said that face masks and social distancing would make them more likely to attend, and approximately one-third of parents said that reducing capacity or requiring masks would make them neither more nor less likely to go to theme parks.

The survey, conducted among 2,200 US adults, has a margin of error of 2 percent. The 962 parents asked about theme parks are a subset of the main survey, with a margin of error of 3 percent.

Safety measures not enticing theme part guests

morning consult theme parks survey

Meanwhile, Disney World is set to cut back visiting hours for all four of its theme parks. Magic Kingdom and Hollywood Studios will drop one hour, while Epcot and Animal Kingdom will have two hours cut.

The changes take effect September 8, and come after crowds were smaller than expected at Disney World. Disney has reported earnings for its fiscal third quarter, revealing its Parks, Experiences and Products segment took a $3.5 billion hit on operating income.

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Bea Mitchell

Bea is a journalist specialising in entertainment, attractions and tech with 10 years' experience. She has written and edited for publications including CNET, BuzzFeed, Digital Spy, Evening Standard and BBC. Bea graduated from King's College London and has an MA in journalism.

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