Coronavirus: Things to Know About Tokyo, Hong Kong, & Shanghai Disneyland Closures


The Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to make headlines. This new strain of the Coronavirus, which originated in Wuhan, China, has spread to countries around the world. Governments and health authorities are now introducing restrictions and advice to limit the spread of the virus.

Since our focus here is regarding theme parks, instead of rehashing on what’s going on with the Coronavirus, we’ll provide you information on how it could affect travel to Japan, Hong Kong, and Shanghai (Mainland China), including how to stay safe and what you should do. And finally, how to stay informed.

The most important advice is to not panic. Information is key.

A gentle reminder that we’re not experts in the field of health. I’ll link to resources that will help you stay informed to make the decisions right for you. Whenever travelling, always have hand sanitizer and wipes with you.

Table of Contents

When Did the Parks Close?

It’s now known that all the Disney Parks in the world are closing or have closed. Here’s a quick list of when these closures are happening or have happened.

  • Tokyo Disney Resort (February 29, 2020)
  • Universal Studios Japan (February 29, 2020)
  • Hong Kong Disneyland (January 26, 2020)
  • Shanghai Disneyland (January 25, 2020)
  • Disneyland (March 15, 2020)
  • Walt Disney World (March 16, 2020)
  • Disneyland Paris (March 16, 2020)
  • Disney Cruise Line (March 14, 2020)

For other closures within Japan see our updated list.

Japan Travel

Tokyo Disneyland is NOT closed due to the Coronavirus

Updated March 22, 2020

The CDC advises that Japan’s status is Alert – Level 2, Practice Enhanced Precautions. Travel is still possible, but the elderly or those with chronic medical conditions should reconsider their trip.

See what major attractions are closed in Japan.

Coronavirus & Theme Parks in Asia – Episode 185

Is Tokyo Disneyland closed due to the Coronavirus?

Tokyo Disney Resort announced that it would be temporarily closed from February 29 and has now extended the closure through to early April 2020. The opening of Tokyo Disneyland’s expansion will be delayed until mid-May. The Tokyo Disney Resort Hotels are still open with limited services.

Always check the official website for the latest Park hours before your visit.

Should I cancel my trip to Japan?

It depends on your circumstances. If your age or medical history puts you at risk, then consider cancelling. Always have some form of travel insurance in case a travel advisory is issued for Japan. I swear by World Nomads for my travel insurance.

Tons of Explorers are still travelling to Japan in 2020. Plan your trip with our extensive and updated travel guide!

Tokyo Disney Resort Refund Information

Tokyo Disney Resort is offering refunds for tickets, hotels, and vacation packages during the temporary closure of both Tokyo Disneyland and Tokyo DisneySea. Please consult the official Tokyo Disney Resort website for refund information.

To receive a refund for Tokyo Disney Resort tickets you’ll need to fill out an online form. This form isn’t online as of March 22, 2020. The official website states it’ll be online sometime before March 31, 2020.

Universal Studios Japan

Universal Studios Japan has confirmed that it will also be closed until at least March 22, 2020.

Always check the official website for the latest information.

Learn more about Universal Studios Japan!

Mainland China Travel & Coronavirus

Shanghai Disneyland closed due to Coronavirus

Updated March 13, 2020

CDC recommends that travellers avoid all nonessential travel to China. This warning is in place due to the immediate health risk, transport disruption, and access to medical care.

If you plan to travel to China or are already there, the CDC offers the following advice:

  • Avoid contact with sick people.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Discuss travel to China with your healthcare provider. Older adults and travellers with chronic medical conditions may be at risk for more severe disease.
  • Clean your hands often by washing them with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60%-95% alcohol. Soap and water should be used if hands are visibly dirty.
    • It is especially important to clean hands after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after coughing, sneezing or blowing your nose. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available.

For the latest information, check the Novel Coronavirus in China and Travel to China sections of the CDC website.

When will Shanghai Disneyland reopen?

It’s not known when Shanghai Disneyland will reopen. We’ll keep you updated.

Should I cancel my trip to Shanghai?

The CDC has issued a level 3 warning for travel to China. That means they’re advising everyone to avoid any nonessential travel to China right now. This may change in the coming months. Always ensure you have a form of travel insurance.

If your trip isn’t in the immediate future, then hold off before cancelling. This situation is changing on a daily basis.

Always check your government’s website for any travel advisories. 

Shanghai Disneyland

Shanghai Disneyland has been closed since January 25, 2020. This includes the Shanghai Disneyland Park, Disneytown, the Walt Disney Grand Theatre, and Wishing Star Park. The Shanghai Disneyland Hotel and Toy Story Hotel remain open for guests. For the latest information, check the Shanghai Disneyland website and our travel guide.

If your visit to Shanghai Disneyland is affected by the closure for the day of your visit, you’re eligible for a refund. Here’s what we know.

Shanghai Disneyland Tickets

If you have purchased Park tickets, then you’re eligible for a full refund. For those Park tickets bought directly from the Resort (official website, official App, official WeChat, official QQ, ticket booths, or Reservation Center), your refund will be processed automatically within 45 working days. If you purchased your tickets through another outlet, contact that company directly.

Early Park Entry Passes, tours, concierge services, and meal coupons are also eligible for a refund.

You’ll find details about all the refund policies on the Shanghai Disneyland Resort website.

Shanghai Disney Resort Hotels

Both the Shanghai Disneyland Hotel and Toy Story Hotel are still open and accepting reservations. However, if your booking is for a day when Shanghai Disneyland is closed, you’re eligible for a full refund. Refund applications must be submitted before the start of your booking.

Submit your request for a refund on your Shanghai Disney Resort Hotel through their online portal. A refund takes about 45 days to process and the refund is sent to the original account.

If you booked via another company, contact that company directly to arrange a refund. Shanghai Disney Resort can offer assistance if you encounter any problems.

Beauty and the Beast Tickets

Guests with tickets to the Mandarin version of Beauty and the Beast will automatically receive a refund within 45 days if they booked through the official website, app or ticketing facilities. If you booked through another vendor, contact them to receive your refund.

Shanghai Disneyland Annual Pass

Annual Passes will be extended to take into account the closure period. Passes will be valid past their expiry date for the number of days the Park is closed. For example, if the Park is closed for seven days, then an annual pass will be valid for an extra seven days past its expiry date.

This includes all related benefits, such as discounts, which will also be extended.

For the latest information about Shanghai Disney Resort’s refunds and extensions, head to the official website.

Hong Kong Travel & Coronavirus

Hong Kong Disneyland closed due to the Coronavirus

Updated February 23, 2020

The CDC classifies Hong Kong as Watch – Level 1, Practice Usual Precautions, this is the lowest level. For the latest advice about travelling to Hong Kong, visit the CDC website.

When will Hong Kong Disneyland reopen?

It’s not known when Hong Kong Disneyland Park will reopen. We’ll keep you updated.

Should I cancel my trip to Hong Kong?

The CDC recommends taking the usual precautions, but there is no reason to cancel travel completely. However, it’s worth noting that Hong Kong is limiting travel to Mainland China.

Always check your government’s website for any travel advisories. 

Hong Kong Disneyland

Hong Kong Disneyland has been closed since January 26, 2020. For the latest information, check the Hong Kong Disneyland website and our travel guide.

If your visit to Hong Kong Disneyland is affected by the closure for the day of your visit, you’re eligible for a refund. Here’s what we know.

On February 14, 2020, it was announced that the expansion area reserved for Hong Kong Disneyland’s potential second park could be used to build temporary quarantine facilities for Hong Kong citizens returning from Mainland China. There is no information on whether this could delay the reopening of Hong Kong Disneyland.

Hong Kong Disneyland Park Tickets

Standard Park tickets are valid for six months from the purchase date, so local guests can save them until the Park reopens.

However, if you’ve purchased tickets directly from the Resort (through the website, ticket booths, or reservation centre) can contact the Disney Reservation Center at [email protected] with your name and confirmation number to request a refund. The same applies to meal vouchers and reservations for Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique.

If you booked tickets via a different provider, contact them directly.

Hotel Bookings

If you have a booking for one of the Hong Kong Disneyland Resort hotels, you are still able to stay at the Hong Kong Disneyland Hotel. As of February 3, 2020,  Disney’s Hollywood Hotel and Disney Explorer’s Lodge are closed to guests. Reservations for these hotels are also closed.

How do I cancel my reservation? To cancel a reservation made directly with Hong Kong Disneyland, send an email to [email protected] with your name and confirmation number to request a refund.

I made my reservation through another vendor, what do I do? If you made a hotel reservation through another vendor, contact them directly. Hong Kong Disneyland is able to provide assistance if you have any issues with a vendor.

Magic Access Annual Membership (Hong Kong Disneyland Annual Pass)

If you have a Magic Access Annual Membership, you’ll have it extended to take into account the days the Park is closed.

How to stay informed about the Coronavirus

Information about the Coronavirus changes on a daily basis. Most of our information is from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Here are more resources to keep yourself informed. Information is the key to these types of situations.

Always check your government’s website for any travel advisories:

Other Disney Parks

Walt Disney World (March 16), Disneyland (March 15), Disney Cruise Line (March 14), and Disneyland Paris (March 16) are also closing in response to the coronavirus. These closures are expected to happen until the end of March.

Do you have any questions?

If there’s something we missed or needs updating, please tell us in the comments.

Feature photo by Sid Verma on Unsplash

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14 Comments

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  1. 1
    Molly

    We are going to cancel our Shanghai part of our trip in March as we don’t want to take risks, however because we are travelling from London we have to make a stop over in China (in the airport) in order to get to Japan and we don’t know whether we can do that or if it’s too risky?! All we would be doing is staying in the airport?

  2. 3
    Karen

    Toy Story Hotel in Shanghai was closed on 26 January, we were all moved to the Disneyland Hotel. The cast members were wonderful through the shut down. Naturally disappointing to have no celebrations on Chinese New Year when that’s why we were there, however certainly best to be safe and healthy!

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