More and more Disney World Cast Members being recalled to work as Disney prepares to boost capacity for the summer

28 days ago in "The Walt Disney Company"

Posted: Wednesday April 14, 2021 2:42pm ET by WDWMAGIC Staff

Disney is continuing to push forward its reopening plans for Walt Disney World with all signs pointing towards an imminent increase in park capacity ahead of the busy summer season.

Buoyed by a better-than-expected COVID-19 vaccination roll out and pent up customer demand, Disney is currently in the process of recalling a significant number of former Cast Members to their existing roles where available, or into new roles where needed.

We've seen frequent Cast Member orientation sessions at EPCOT, Magic Kingdom and Disney's Animal Kingdom over the past couple of weeks, and have heard from many Cast Members that they are returning to work.

In addition to the increase in operational Cast Members, we also see more Disney Park Pass reservation slots becoming available for June 2021 during periods that were previously unavailable. For resort hotel guests, June had very limited availability. As of this afternoon, we are now seeing almost 100% availability for this period. Dining availability for June and beyond has also seen similar increases in availability.

A summer return of live entertainment, which begins with a celebration of Festival of the Lion King at Disney's Animal Kingdom will add much needed capacity to the parks. Assuming Festival of the Lion King is successful, we are likely to see more and more live entertainment return, including the possibility of firework shows.

Many attractions have also seen an increase in capacity, achieved by adding more plastic dividers, reducing social distancing and loading more guests per ride vehicle. 

Finally, Disney World operating hours recently released for June 2021 suggest a return to something approaching normal length operating days.

Disney never discloses specific attendance numbers, but has mentioned various operational capacity percentages during this reopening period. Disney CEO Bob Chapek's last update was in February 2021, where he talked about a 35% capacity. Of course percentages can be rather ambiguous, as it is never quite clear what 35% of an unknown number actually is. 

The Walt Disney Company's next earnings result call for investors is scheduled for May 13 2021, and we expect to hear an update from Bob Chapek on capacity and how Walt Disney World is ramping up for the summer and beyond.

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trojanjustin16 days ago

I still don't understand why they did away with the seasonal CMs. They cost no money to the company and could be called to fill in during busy weeks/seasons.

HauntedMansionFLA16 days ago

They did away with seasonal cast members. They also didn’t have any Union backing to secure call back rights. Former Seasonal cast members are welcome to apply on The Disney Career web site.

grimb16816 days ago

No college program, international program or seasonal cast members. The seasonal cast were the members who picked up extra shifts from full/part timers. We still have cast members working many extra hours without time off. Looking forward to getting a call for seasonal work.

CastAStone17 days ago

I know PM has the potential to add a lot of hourly ride capacity but I don’t imagine it’s helping capacity in terms of physical distancing much. 32 trains and my observation watching a number of ride videos yesterday was that they’re sending out maybe 6 people per train on average right now, loading 2 parties per train. So that’s roughly 200 people on the ride. The metal part of the queue that had previously been inaccessible holds maybe 150 more people (distanced)? So we have only opened up enough space for perhaps 350 guests to be admitted, or about 1% more than previous. Even in its distanced format the TTA PM should still eat 1150 guests per hour, which will be nice.

Disone17 days ago

Includes many salaried. Alot. Not all but a sizable portion are being recalled.

RSoxNo117 days ago

Are the parks still at 35%? I would imagine MK just got a boost today with the re-opening of the PeopleMover.

some other guy17 days ago

tbf neither is wrong

CastAStone17 days ago

Yes there is a public job posting for attractions, maintenance, food service, and custodial.

JoeCamel18 days ago

Depends on the position but yes, they are moving to a more normal hiring process

CntrlFlPete18 days ago

I am hearing that WDW has shifted to open hiring as well as hiring part timers for their parks. I assume this means they have 'recalled' everyone they were obligated to offer work.

HauntedMansionFLA26 days ago

A lot of cast members have been sitting by their phones since the shutdown

HauntedMansionFLA26 days ago

Fill in all available seats?😉

1HAPPYGHOSTHOST26 days ago

They can call back whoever they want the fact of the matter is most of these people had to get new jobs to survive. i wouldn't go back i have already moved on.

Lilofan26 days ago

Selling Vista Way, Commons still closed, with no college program , WDW needs to find cast willing to work these shifts regular cast don't want to work .