What a hurricane could mean for your Disney vacation

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It’s that time again. Florida has been very lucky with a 10 year streak of no Hurricane striking the main portion of the state. There have been a few near misses, however. There’s a good chance that the tropical depression sitting a few days off the southern tip of Florida will strike the state, but there’s also a good chance it will miss the state entirely. Either way, if you have a Walt Disney World vacation planned in the near future, it’s a good time to make yourself away of the Walt Disney World Hurricane Policy.

If you book your vacation via Disney or an authorized Disney travel agent, then you’re eligible for some protection. If the National Hurricane Center issues a warning for the Orlando area – or your place of residence – within 7 days of your scheduled arrival date, you can call to reschedule or cancel your vacation package and most room only reservations without any cancellation or change fees imposed by Disney.

Please note that third party suppliers like airlines, hotels, car rental, and insurance companies have their own separate policies. Many do not offer refunds. Also keep in mind that Disney only reschedules like for like reservations. If your discount or room rate was not available for the rescheduled date, you may be asked to make up the difference in pricing.

For Disney’s part, in the past they’ve been pretty good about preparing for storms. They do their best to keep park operation interruptions limited and keep the parks open. That’s how they make money. But they will put safety first and won’t ask cast members to come in if conditions are dangerous. When hurricanes have struck in the past, Disney has done its best to clear the parks of debris and do damage assessments quickly. Often one or more of the parks is open the very next day.

If the hurricane is not a direct threat, you might encounter one of those rare occurrences when you have the parks to yourselves. However, if the conditions are stormy, Disney can make some inclement weather adjustments, such as shorter hours and closure of some attractions. But just because Mother Nature is making a mess of things, doesn’t mean you’ll have a less than magical time. It’s a good time to enjoy the indoor attractions, character meet and greets, dining, and even some Disney Springs fun. See our list of Rainy Day Fun suggestions.

Hurricane season officially ends November 30th, so there’s a long way to go and the National Hurricane Center has predicted an active season.

Read Disney’s Hurricane Policy FAQ here.

stacey-frost-headshotIf you’re planning a Disney vacation, using an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner, like Stacey Frost from Pixie Vacations, will make sure you get all the benefits of Disney’s Hurricane Policy and a great Walt Disney World experience. Please send an email to Pixie Vacations authorized Disney travel agent Stacey Frost (StaceyF@PixieVacations.com), call (407) 454-1477 or fill out this form for complimentary travel planning. Your use of this free service to book your travel will help support The Disney Blog. Thank you.

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3 thoughts on “What a hurricane could mean for your Disney vacation

  1. Mark

    Years ago we did EPCOT on a day when a hurricane was approaching Tampa. It was actually great. Felt like we had the place to ourselves. Even got on Test Track during a break in the rain. Just bring your rain gear.

  2. Jeff

    I love weather.
    As long as my flight into MCO isn’t affected, there’s nothing I’d like better than a large storm to pass through the Orlando area during my WDW Vacation.
    If that means I’m stuck in my Magical Disney hotel room for a couple days, so be it.

  3. Disney Mike

    Unless a hurricane is severe, most Disney park operations won’t be affected. Even if they are affected, it’s likely the parks will only be closed for one day. These are the chances you take if you plan a WDW vacation during the height of hurricane season.

    We were once able to get a table at Cinderella’s Royal Table in the Magic Kingdom without a reservation the day before a hurricane came through. They had boarded up the big window, but otherwise it was a perfectly lovely meal in a half-empty restaurant.

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