While Disneyland has not confirmed a connection to the virus that has so far killed 44 people worldwide (with hundreds more in the hospital), the theme park announced Friday it is shifting its annual pass program, and would be closing down sick employees.
Disneyland’s annual pass program allows guests to enjoy the theme park’s parks for $110 a ticket, at 10 parks and more than a dozen rides and attractions. It’s one of the most popular frequent theme park passes out there. (The company estimates that the pass is purchased by more than 4 million people in the U.S. each year).
For the first time, the park will be charging new $135 annual pass holders for a full year of passes, which includes entry into all 10 parks, as well as the exclusive option to go “errands” through the parks’ Disney Park Passport and three “early bird” passes on Fridays and Saturdays.
Disney CEO Bob Iger issued a statement on the company’s website, which reads in part:
“The safety and health of our guests and employees is our top priority. We have closely monitored the situation, and are offering our full support to local officials. We are working closely with health officials to ensure that our guests are safe and our employees are well-informed. We encourage all guests who are feeling unwell to contact health authorities immediately for further advice and information. Our parks have closed to new visitors while they are out of action and will open as soon as public health officials clear the buildings. We have also implemented additional cleaning and sanitizing procedures and will continue to monitor the situation closely.”
Earlier this week, Disneyland sent out a reminder note to annual pass holders, asking them to “remain on site while we assess the situation.”