Whether or not going to a Disney theme park is an annual, bi-annual, or once in a lifetime thing for you, it’s still an event that you look forward to all year until it happens. As every Disney enthusiast knows, the company’s parks are wondrous places with atmospheres like nothing else in the world, and the time you spend inside them feels like time spent in a tiny bubble where none of the problems from the outside world can reach you. What you may not be aware of is how hard Disney works to preserve that atmosphere.
There are more than a few things that are banned at Disney, and they’re not always obvious things. Becoming drunk or swearing at the staff will get you thrown out of any Disney theme park, but they’ll also get you thrown out of most theme parks in the world. Wearing an offensive motto on a t-shirt will also get you thrown out, but again, this is hardly exclusive to Disney. There are a few other, less-obvious things that Disney frowns upon to the point they’re banned, and it might be helpful to you for you to be aware of them before you go. After all, you don’t want to get yourself in trouble by accidentally engaging in any of them while you’re there!
What Is Banned at Disney??
Disney is heavily against gambling. It’s spent a large amount of money on campaigns against opening up gambling laws in Florida. When it took over Marvel, it shut down all of Marvel’s extremely profitable online slots games. When the company acquired the rights to ‘Star Wars,’ notice was served on hundreds of online slots websites that the official ‘Star Wars’ slots were to be pulled down, too. There are no casino games on any of Disney’s cruise ships, and there are none inside any of their theme parks either. In recent years Disney’s focus has been honing back in on the feeling of childhood innocence, and they’ve decided that gambling is incompatible with that vision. You might get away with playing slot games in your hotel room if you can get access to a suitable website, but we still wouldn’t recommend mentioning you’ve been doing so to any of the staff!
We’ve seen a rise in cosplaying all over the world in recent years. We think it started at Comic-Con and similar events, and then branched out elsewhere. If you’re somehow unfamiliar with the term, cosplaying is the practice of going out in public dressed as your favorite fictional character. Fans of science fiction shows, fantasy movies, and cartoons are particularly likely to be cosplayers, and Disney parks might seem like the most obvious places in the world to indulge in it, but you can’t do it. Your children are allowed to dress up as Elsa or Ariel or whomever they wish, but anyone over the age of 14 is not permitted to do so. The reasoning for this is pretty simple when you think about it – Disney simply doesn’t want adults in fancy dress to be confused with their own official character performers inside the parks – but that doesn’t stop dozens of disappointed cosplayers from being turned away from the park gates every day.
We can’t work out whether it’s more surprising that Disney has only just banned smoking, or that it allowed smoking to go on for so long. Either way, if you’re a smoker and you haven’t been to the parks for a while, this one might come as a surprise. Disney used to include smoking areas inside its parks, usually tucked around corners or out of the view of children. Effective from the first of May 2019, all of those smoking areas have been removed, and smoking is now banned inside Disney theme parks. There are still provisions made for smokers at the hotels, but not at the parks. This is a significant turnaround for a company that sold tobacco inside its Main Street tours for decades! It’s bad news for vapers too, as e-cigarettes are also covered by the ban.
Where in the world are you likely to take as many pictures as you are at Disney? Pictures help to trigger memories, and now we’re all carrying digital cameras with us wherever we go we’re taking more photos than at any point in all of human history. You’re welcome to take pictures inside Disney’s parks, and you’re even encouraged to do so at the official photo points, but don’t try to use a selfie stick to do so. You’ll be asked to put it away, and you might even have the item confiscated if you don’t have anywhere to store it. This isn’t Disney’s way of objecting to the inherent narcissism that selfie sticks represent; it’s a health and safety decision. Disney parks are too crowded to allow people to walk around with long, thin rods of metal that could impale another guest at any given second. Add to that the fact that they could wreak havoc if they were dropped and fell into a ride’s machinery, and the ban suddenly becomes understandable.
Most Things On Wheels
Disney’s parks are, famously, huge. Spending a full day walking around one is hard going on your feet. You may have noticed other guests making use of the mobility scooters to get around, and so you might assume that you’re okay to use your own preferred wheeled transport to get around, too. You’d be wrong to make that assumption. Disney has banned anyone from using almost anything on wheels to get around their parks. Bikes are obviously banned, but you’ll also fail to get in if you’re carrying a skateboard or a scooter, or even if you have wheels in the heels of your shoes. Wheels in heels might seem like a neat, self-contained way of moving around at speed without getting blisters, but if staff notice you gliding effortlessly around the park, they’ll ask you to leave. As is the case with selfie sticks, it’s health and safety that’s to blame for this exclusion – Disney can’t run the risk of wheeled customers colliding with each other at high speed in busy areas.
How many of these things were you already aware of? How many caught you by surprise? Whether you agree with these bans or not, be assured that Disney is very serious about them. Check them against anything you’re carrying to take with you into a park and make changes if necessary!