Wedding Anniversary trip to Disney's Hollywood Studios
Updated: Aug 4, 2020
Last Friday, Nate and I celebrated our 11th wedding anniversary. I used a vacation day from work and we spent the day at Disney's Hollywood Studios in Orlando, FL. I know, I know, COVID-19. Honestly though I felt more safe in this theme park than I do going to Target.
This is a review of our experience, it's long and if you don't want to read it, feeel free to skip right to the pictures.
Upon arrival, the parking attendants parked us with one parking space left open between each car to allow for social distancing. We walked to the entrance since they aren’t running trams, once we got to the gate Nate realized he forgot his phone in the car, so the boys and I waited at the entrance for him while he retrieved it. Not gonna lie, I was annoyed because this made us miss being inside the park at 10am to join the queue for Rise of the Resistance. While waiting I observed that everyone seemed prepared and were wearing their masks even before they entered the park. We did see one family get turned away because they showed up in neck gaitors. The tent to get a temp check was super quick and there was literally no wait to enter the park.
Upon entry we walked right on to Star Tours – The Adventures Continue. Both Zach and Alex (6&7) were scared, but also said it was fun. Nate on the other hand doesn’t do rides well and that was it for him for the rest of the day, too bad I didn’t think of Dramamine until after the fact. I personally thought it was awesome and to be honest, I hate Star Wars, there I said it! Actually they did a phenomenal job on everything in Galaxy’s Edge.
Since Nate didn’t feel well after the ride and it was almost lunch time, we started aimlessly walking around in gift shops plus looking for food. Unfortunately, I didn’t do my homework on dining before our trip. If you want to order any food and enter a restaurant, you must order it ahead of time, either on your Disney app or they have sandwich boards outside of the restaurant for you to scan a qr code. After you order your food a page pops up and there’s a button that says “I’m here, prepare my food.” Apparently ordering your food isn’t good enough to sit down yet in the restaurant to cool off. Once I arrived in the front of Backlot Express, I was greeted by a cast member that instructed me. I pressed the “I’m here” button and had to wait outside the restaurant for 10 minutes until my app said our food was ready in line 6. We were allowed to go in, pick up our food and there’s a cast member pouring drinks for you rather than self-serve. I know it’s Disney and expect to pay high prices, but IMO, the burgers and Cuban sandwiches were mediocre for paying $60, it’s equivalent to a Bubba burger. Regardless, it was a nice break from the heat and wearing our facemasks to sit in the ac and recharge our batteries.
Nate browsed gift shops while the boys and I walked onto Alien Saucers, Toy Story Mania and a minimal wait time for Smugglers Run. They made me go on the Rockin’ Roller Coaster by myself and again it took me longer to walk through the line than it did waiting for my limo. The longest wait of the day was for Millenium Falcon which Zach and I waited maybe 20 minutes. It was really awesome that we were in the ship by ourselves and both got to be the pilots pressing buttons and pulling levers. Zach found it to be a little too realistic and made me hold his hand. It was my favorite ride of the day and like I said earlier, not a SW fan…
We arrived at 10:30am and left at 2:30pm, Nate was still feeling sick and to be honest the heat was really brutal and the masks made it feel worse, the heat index was 102. The boys had on dri-fit masks and I started off with my cotton cloth mask and switched to a disposable after being in the park for 3 hours bc I felt like it was getting saturated with my breath and sweat.
Overall it was fun and we probably got to experience a lot more in the 4 hours we were there than we would have in 8 hours in a pandemic free day even though there were several things in the park still closed. While Disney did a great job of cleaning and making it as safe as possible, I won’t be visiting again until it's not so hot out. Because they were so restrictive, I don't feel like there were any places for non-riders to cool off from the Florida heat.