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Here's What Disney World, Universal Do During a Hurricane

Across the state of Florida, folks are preparing for Hurricane Ian -- here's everything you need to know about your Disney reservation.

In the wee hours of Sept. 27, Hurricane Ian struck the Western coast of Cuba with winds up to 125 mph, heavy rain, and surge flooding. Now, the Category 3 hurricane has moved into the Gulf of Mexico, and Key West is already seeing 40-50 mph winds and heavy rain. 

The state of Florida and its residents are preparing for the storm by evacuating or finding shelter before Ian's arrival in the next 12-24 hours. The storm is expected to send storm surges and tropical storms into Georgia and South Carolina as well.

As the storm develops, weather warnings are being issued for areas that may be affected, many of which spread across the state of Florida. One of the affected areas is at the heart of Orlando, Florida: the magical world of Disney. As of this writing, the park is "currently operating under normal conditions" as it continues to "monitor Hurricane Ian". Orlando itself is currently under a hurricane watch, but no warning has been issued yet.

So if you've got a Disney World reservation this week, here's everything you need to know about the park's policies concerning Hurricane Ian.

Disney World Lead JS

Disney Closures Due to Hurricane Ian

So far, Disney World has a few park closures that potential visitors should be aware of. Guests with reservations for any of these events or resorts are being contacted to find alternative arrangements.

Of the Disney Resort Hotels, the Fort Wilderness Resort & Campground, Copper Creek Cabin at Disney's Wilderness Lodge, the Treehouse Villas at Disney's Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa, and the Bungalows at Disney's Polynesian Village Resort will be closed from Wed., Sept. 28 through Fri., Sept. 30.

Additionally, Disney's Blizzard Beach is currently closed, and Typhoon Lagoon will close Wed., Sept. 28th and Thurs., Sept. 29th. Both the Winter Summerland and Fantasia Gardens Miniature Golf experiences will close Wednesday, Sept 28th and Thursday, Sept. 29th. Disney will also not be enforcing cancelation policies for dining and other experiences effective immediately.

Will I Have To Pay a Cancellation Fee?

Normally, Disney charges cancellation fees for anyone looking to cancel bookings 24-48 hours before their reservation. But in light of Hurricane Ian's impending arrival, cancellation fees will be waived for check-in dates between Monday, Sept. 26 and Monday, Oct. 3. 

If you booked a Disney Hotel in the affected areas and you booked directly with Disney Destinations LLC or the Walt Disney Travel Company, you'll be able to call and cancel or reschedule your trip with no cancellation fees. 

Special offers and specific accommodations you may have booked for your Disney trip may be a little harder to reschedule, so prepare to be flexible. Cast Members will do their best to find a booking date with the same or similar offers. Anything you've already paid the Walt Disney Travel Company for, such as "rooms, park tickets, dining plans and other Disney products and services" will be credited toward your new trip.

Disney cannot, however, cancel or reschedule your other third-party travel accommodations. If you booked your trip through a travel agent or other third party, you'll have to make your arrangements with them instead. The same practice goes for other unrelated expenses like your airline tickets, car rentals, and third-party hotels.