No screaming: Disneyland reopens with bizarre new rule

After closing for four months due to the coronavirus pandemic, Tokyo Disney Resort has welcomed back guests with new social distancing requirements – including one seemingly strange rule.

Visitors are required to wear face masks and have their temperatures recorded, but staff members are also asking guests to refrain from screaming loudly on rides to avoid the possibility of spreading the disease.

The resort will operate at a 50 per cent capacity for the foreseeable future, while parades and shows remain suspended.

Tokyo Disneyland reopened for the first time in four months after suspending operations due to coronavirus concerns. Source: AP

Visitors in face masks queuing on floor marks clapped as the gates of the Magic Kingdom reopened on Wednesday, and were encouraged to clean their hands and pay without cash while enjoying one of country’s largest theme parks.

Although a stretch from the park’s former days, the new norm did not dampen the enthusiasm of Disney lovers like university student Momoka Mitsui.

"I'm over the moon just to be able to get inside Disneyland," said the 18-year old who visited the park with a friend, both sporting face masks and matching Mickey Mouse headbands.

Tokyo, which has seen the highest number of coronavirus cases in Japan, allowed amusement parks to reopen in mid-June – later than those in some other regions – after the government lifted the national state of emergency in late May.

A Tokyo Disneyland resort staff member holds a board on social distancing at Tokyo Disneyland in Urayasu, Chiba prefecture, Japan. Source: AP

Masahiko Endo, a 37-year-old care worker from Tokyo, said he agreed with the decision to limit the number of guests entering the park located some 15km from central Tokyo.

"I hope the pandemic will be contained soon, so that Disney can go back to being a place anyone can visit," he said, clinching a Duffy the Disney Bear toy.

Tokyo Disney Resort, consisting of both Tokyo Disneyland and Tokyo DisneySea, attracted over 32.5 million visitors annually in 2018.

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