Domestic Disney theme parks will require guests under the age of 14 years to be accompanied by someone who is older than 14, a Disney spokeswoman told NBC Los Angeles on March 16.
The age policy goes into effect March 23 and affects guests at both Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland Resort. In addition the resort’s theme parks, the policy applies to Walt Disney World water parks (Typhoon Lagoon and Blizzard Beach) and DisneyQuest.
"If a cast member who is working at the front gates sees a guest who appears to be younger than 14 without someone who appears to be older than that, they will engage in a conversation with the guest," Disney spokeswoman Suzi Brown told NBC 4, Los Angeles.
The age policy will bring about its own set of complications, as young guests tend not to have or carry identification. According to Brown, Cast Members will approach guests who appear to be under 14 years. If necessary, the child’s parent or guardian will then be contacted to accompany the young guest into the park.
According to Brown, no incident motivated the change in policy but its implmentation will bring greater consistency to the domestic Disney theme parks.
“We regularly review all of our policies, and we identified an opportunity to provide a consistent age of admission and address a question we occasionally get from parents, ” Brown said. "The question is just if we have a minimum age."
Disneyland Resort did not have an minimum age policy for its theme parks and the minimum age required for entrance into the parks at Walt Disney World Resort varied, Brown said.
Brown also told the OC Register that families with annual passes will be notified about the policy change. The Register notes that some families “routinely drop their children off at a park for the day.”