A lot is different at Disney World at the moment, but Magic still abounds everywhere you turn. Masks are required, physical distancing is enforced, and crowd numbers are lower (yay to not being a sardine at Disney World right now). Our favorite friends are still around, but meeting characters at Disney World looks a little different than the usual meetups that you can schedule.
For safety – you can’t actually meet them up close. Which I know is a bummer, right? On the flip side, it is pretty cool to come across one of the characters in their more natural spots in the park with their full personalities on display. I have listed a couple characters later in this article with a cute photo to match where you might be able to take a selfie with a character you love.
No Parades, BUT Cavalcades Instead
The cavalades keep the number of people gathering together in one spot to a lower number. Helping all of us follow the CDC guidelines set forth to protect everyone while we still get to enjoy Walt Disney World Resort.
Cavalcades are kind of like mini parades that are not on a posted schedule, they just happen multiple times a day. This is the BEST! Now you do not have to worry about missing the 3pm parade or the 9pm fireworks because of an advanced dining reservation. There is a very good chance you will see the same cavalcade again or another that is just as wonderful, within the same day.
They typically have 1 float and some characters or Cast Members on foot or horseback (like Merida and her horse Angus).
They are quick, so don’t worry over your toddler fussing because you are waiting for the end of the parade to find a quick snack. The quickness creates enjoyment without taking you away from your plan for the day.
Just like with a parade, music can be a cue. Before you’ll be able to see a cavalcade you’ll likely be able to hear it. For some cavalcades, there really is no advanced warning – which makes stumbling upon them that much more special and exciting. It is pretty cool to see your fav characters just strolling down Main street waving to you!
Characters Out in the Open
Sometimes you can catch the characters out in the grassy areas, away from the park guests. These characters aren’t available for meet and greets – and you can’t get within 6 feet of them, BUT it is still a great photo opportunity. A few examples of this new way of meeting characters at Disney World are:
The Step Sisters heckling guests from the castle!
Winnie the Pooh chasing butterflies in Epcot!
Joy pretending to mow the grass before Living with the Land.
Since the characters are social distancing, no autographs are allowed at Disney World in the parks or at the resorts. Sometimes, the character meals will have a souvenir postcard available, but this is not a guarantee.
At the moment character meals are different, but they remain one of my favorite ways of meeting characters at Disney World. The meals have shifted away from buffets right now. Meals are usually family style or just one entree’ per person at the restaurants. The character meals that are happening, do not have table to table greetings for autographs or individual pictures. However, they do get close enough to get a social distanced 6 feet away selfie. The characters will usually pause nearby so you can get a nice photo. I have listed a few places below that are having character meals right now.
Be Our Guest is doing meals and the Beast sometimes makes an appearance.
*Cinderell’s Royal Table is doing meals; however, you are not guaranteed to see the princesses.
Crystal Palace is doing meals; however, the characters make their appearance outside the restaurant at random times.
Characters are still around and loving guests from afar. Don’t let social distancing stop you from enjoying your favorite Hundred Acre Woods animal or Star Wars trooper. Let’s plan today for your next Disney World vacation filled with magic and adventure!
Holly is a travel agent with Kingdom and Cruise Travel who specializes in Disney vacations. She loves helping others create fun, new and exciting adventures, but most of all, she is looking forward to assisting you with your next vacation. Let's start planning!