We’ve already discussed Disney’s newest land, Pandora – The World of Avatar at length, with pre-opening looks at Avatar – Flight of Passage, the Na’vi River Journey, and of course the land at large. However, now that the official opening of this land is upon us, thousands of guests are preparing to be among the first to travel to this new planet. And if you are hoping to be a part of this initial group of guests, there are some things you should probably know before you go.
1. This Memorial Day Weekend is projected to be one of the biggest ever at Walt Disney World
Earlier this month Disney revealed that after several quarters of attendance losses in 2015 and 2016, this year has finally brought guests back to Walt Disney World in a meaningful way. Attendance so far this year at domestic theme parks (which also includes the Disneyland Resort as well as Walt Disney World) rose 4 percent in Disney’s second quarter. In addition travel club AAA reported that by their estimates that 2017 will be a record year for Florida tourism over the Memorial Day weekend holiday, with central Florida specifically making big gains this year.
With guest levels already elevated, the stage is set for one of Disney's most-attended grand openings ever, which means that guests will need to wake up early and be persistent if they want to enter this land, as Disney will likely be taking some proactive measures to ensure Pandora doesn't descend into pandemonium...
2. Disney will likely cap the amount of people allowed in the land
As we mentioned previously, Pandora – The World of Avatar is actually quite small, with not a lot of walking space to hold guests who are not sitting in a queue or restaurant. For that reason, Disney will likely cap the amount of people who are able to enter this land during its opening weekend, limiting the amount of guests in this closed-off land to those who are fortunate enough to get their early, or those with FastPass+ reservations for either of the two attractions in this new land, and directing other guests to wait in a holding area until some guests leave.
Though this may seem a little dramatic, it’s worth noting that Universal employed a similar strategy when the Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley opened a few years ago, and with crowds already projected to be quite high, it makes sense for Disney to limit the amount of guests that can come in to this new land on its opening days in a similar way.