SeaWorld Orlando will officially make a splashy return June 11 after temporary closure due to COVID-19! SeaWorld Parks and Entertainment presented a reopening plan to the Orange County Economic Recovery Task Force, the Mayor of Orange County and approval from the governor of Florida that includes new health and safety measures for SeaWorld Orlando, Discovery Cove and Aquatica.
Here are the details about the plan and what you need to know about the reopening so you can prepare for your visit!
SeaWorld Orlando and Busch Gardens Tampa Reopening Guidelines
SeaWorld Orlando and Busch Gardens Tampa are implementing new park health and safety measures to protect employees, guests and animals. These include health and safety guidelines and recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control, such as face coverings and temperature screenings.
Overall Park Enhancements
Face coverings will be required for all employees and guests ages 2 and older. Guests will be encouraged to bring their own face coverings. At Busch Gardens Tampa, parking trams with modified seating will be operating for certain parking areas.
Physical distancing will be promoted throughout the park by ground markings and signage. Contactless payments will be encouraged, and plexiglass will be installed in high-traffic areas.
Cleaning and sanitization will be increased significantly in high-contact areas, including numerous hand sanitization stations.
All employees and guests must undergo and pass temperature screenings before entering the park.
Employees will receive new training on new park operating procedures, which includes guidance from the CDC and health advisers.
Specific Enhancements to Key Operational Areas
Guest Arrivals and Ticketing: There will be enhanced cleaning protocols in arrival areas, and spacing will be increased for touchless turnstiles. Paper park maps will not be provided. Instead, park maps will be available through SeaWorld's mobile app.
Restaurants: Seating layouts will be arranged to accommodate appropriate distancing. Tables and chairs will be sanitized frequently. Paper menus will replace traditional menus, condiment and topping stations will be closed, utensils will come pre-packaged and buffets will be adjusted or closed. (Busch Gardens Tampa will not be offering any buffets.) Additional grab-and-go options will be added.
Retail Shops: Queues in shops will have floor markings for physical distancing. There will be designated entry and exit points.
Animal Exhibits and Interactions: All open animal viewing spaces will have markings for physical distancing in queues. Certain tours and interactions will be limited to one party at a time. Only tours that allow for physical distancing will operate, and certain animal interactions may be modified.
Public Spaces: Hand sanitizer stations will increase throughout the park, as well as consistent signage. In certain areas, guest flow will be directed in a single direction. Venues will be configured with modified seating and cleaned after each event or presentation.
Rides and Attractions: Queues will have markings for physical distancing. Single rider lines will be removed, and modified seating will be implemented. Hand sanitizer will be available at the entry and exit points of all rides, and the frequency of cleaning and sanitizing ride vehicles will be increased. Open play areas will be temporarily closed unless they meet physical distancing measures.
Parades and Meet and Greets: Certain parts of parades and meet and greets will be limited or removed. Any parade components that involve guest interaction will be updated or removed. Character interactions and photo opportunities will be modified.
Summer Camps: Upon reopening, Busch Gardens Tampa will not be running its summer camps.
Aquatica Orlando, Discovery Cove and Adventure Island Tampa Reopening Guidelines
Aquatica and Discovery Cove in Orlando and Adventure Island in Tampa will have increased cleaning and sanitization of high contact surfaces, such as ride vehicles, rafts, tubes and life vests. To ensure physical distancing, guest capacity will be limited in pools and lazy rivers, and lounge chairs will be spread out appropriately. All rafts and ride vehicles will be limited to a single party, so groups will not be mixed together.