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UPDATE May 22 - Disney's new "Early Entry" program officially debuted at Walt Disney World on October 1, 2021. It replaced the former Extra Magic Hours program which was in place before the theme park closures of March 2020 due to COVID-19. The "Early Entry" program which allows all on-site hotel guests an extra 30 minutes of additional time inside each park every morning has been quite the success.

Disney has confirmed this week that the Early Theme Park entry perk for its resort hotel guests will continue through at least the end of 2023. No announcements have been made about the evening extended hours just yet, but as of right now, this program is still available for select Disney Deluxe and Deluxe Villa Resort hotel guests and we certainly expect it to continue. We will keep you posted if Disney makes any further annoucements regarding the "Early Entry" or the extended evening hours program.

Epcot, Disney
Image: Disney

January 11, 2021 - Ever since the shutdowns back in March, Walt Disney World's Extra Magic Hours perk for resort guests, which previously allowed resort guests early admission or late-night hours in the park post-closure has been unavailable. And now it has been confirmed by Disney that the Extra Magic Hours program will not return.

However, Disney also announced that a new early theme park entry offering for hotel guests will debut later this year and will allow Disney hotel guests to enter any of the four theme parks 30 minutes early each day. No start date has been provided yet, but we'd assume when COVID-19 restrictions are relaxed at the resort, Disney will begin implementing this new program. 

Disney released a statement about the changes, saying "The new early theme park entry benefit helps us better spread visitation across all four theme parks, while providing added flexibility by giving guests extra early park time on each day of their vacation and in the park of their choosing". 

Image: Disney

This news may be disappointing for fans who enjoyed the extra hours at the theme parks with lower crowds, but the early entry system will hopefully give resort guests a little extra time in the parks when it is implemented later this year. How do you feel about this change?

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Comments

Visited from the uk and stayed on property attracted by the magical express, extra magic hours, and dining plan. Still love the Disney parks but with all these stopped when we do unlock we will probably stay off property.

I feel that this is yet another change that pushes people to buy extra ticket programs like the holiday parties, but if they have opened those up without capacity restrictions then even the additional ticket options are not worth it.

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