Entertainment giant Disney has announced that its Shanghai theme park in China will be reopened for tourists in a phased manner starting next week. The coronavirus scare has eaten into the profits of Disney as the conglomerate had to shut down its parks across the globe because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Shanghai theme park, Disney's largest international facility, will throw open its gates again on May 11 after putting in place a slew of stronger safety measures for the visitors. The Chinese park, which last welcomed guests on January 24, was closed for the past three months following the spread of coronavirus. Shanghai Disneyland is one of the first Disney parks that were shut during the initial stage of the COVID-19 outbreak. The theme park, which will start receiving tourists from May 15, would become the first in the Disney bouquet to reopen after the crises.
Twelve Disney parks in North America, Asia, and Europe had been closed for the past one month, making a dent in the company's profits.
"The visitors will get a memorable and out-of-the-world experience from Shanghai Disneyland, which will be reopened with better health and security measures," said Walt Disneyland CEO Bob Chapek.
"We are excited to receive the guests as they are also craving for a Disneyland experience," he added.
The security measures include limiting the number of visitors through an exhaustive registration and entry system. Tickets will be issued only for select days and yearly pass holders should register their names beforehand for entry. The restaurants and fun rides will only have limited people. Moreover, the rides are structured to make sure that tourists are adhering to social distancing norms, and cleanliness and hygiene will be ensured. The park staff will be given protective gear, including masks, and they are directed to maintain adequate distance from the visitors.
As per Aecom data, more than 11 crore people visited Shanghai Disneyland in 2018. Disney earned 26 billion dollars, 37 percent of the company's total income, through parks, entertainment and sale of other products in 2019 fiscal.
But the company's income from these sources has tanked this year, according to an official report released on Tuesday. The revenue dipped by 58 percent compared to last financial year.