Home » The 8 BIG Updates From Walt Disney World (and Beyond) This Week (December 13-19, 2021)

The 8 BIG Updates From Walt Disney World (and Beyond) This Week (December 13-19, 2021)

​This week at Walt Disney World, an iconic show at Disney’s Hollywood Studios reopens, another mobile service expands, plus Genie+ gets an overhaul for the holidays! 

Outside Walt Disney World, Universal hikes parking fees for certain drivers and SeaWorld’s iconic Kraken roller coaster gets a new color scheme! 

1. The Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular reopens at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

This week the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular returned to Disney’s Hollywood Studios after being shuttered since March 2020. This show once again features performers enacting iconic scenes from “Raiders of the Lost Ark,” now with a special moment to introduce the incredibly talented stunt team as the show gets underwayDisney has shared a new video offering a look behind-the-scenes as the cast and crew rehearse for the show, which you can watch above. 

2. Early entry for resort guests extended to one hour for the holiday season

Disney has announced that they will extend Early Theme Park Entry for hotel guests from 30 to 60 minutes daily during the busy holiday period, from December 19, 2021, and running through January 3, 2022. Also during this time, several attractions are being added to Genie+. You can check out the full list here

3. Typhoon Lagoon reportedly reopening next month

Several sources are reporting that Typhoon Lagoon is eyeing a January 2022 reopening, marking the first time that this park will have been open since March 2020. However, Disney has not confirmed this target just yet. 

4. EPCOT International Flower & Garden Festival returns next year with Garden Rocks concert series 

It has been confirmed that the 2022 edition of the EPCOT International Flower & Garden Festival will take place next spring from March 2 through July 4th, for a massive 125 days total. For the first time since March 2020, Disney has confirmed that it will be bringing back its Garden Rocks Concert Series as part of this festival, with entertainment acts yet to be announced.

5. Enchanting Extras returning next year 

Caring for giants, Disney
Image: Disney

Walt Disney World has announced that select tours from their Enchanting Extras Collection will be returning in 2022, including the following: 

  • Disney’s Keys to the Kingdom
  • Caring for Giants
  • Wild Africa Trek
  • Up close with Rhinos
  • Savor the Savanna

6. Mobile checkout expands

Disney has expanded its Mobile Checkout service to more Walt Disney World retail locations this week, with this service now available at select retail locations at Disney’s Hollywood Studios and Disney’s Animal Kingdom. This service allows guests to scan and pay for items right from their phones. Once they have finished shopping, guests can then show their purchase QR code and selected items to a cast member at the designated exit.

7. Prime parking rates at Universal go up $10

If you want the best parking at Universal Orlando Resort, prepare to pay a little bit more as Universal has raised their prime parking rates from $50 to $60. Standard parking remains $27, 

8. Kraken getting a new color 

Kraken, thecoasterkings.com
Image: thecoasterkings.com

SeaWorld’s Kraken roller coaster is getting a bit of a facelift, with a new, darker green slowly replacing the ride’s iconic teal coloring. You can see more images here.