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What not to do when visiting Walt Disney World?

December 4, 2017, 11:24 AM · What's the stupidest thing you can do when visiting Walt Disney World?

Not book your Fastpass+ reservations 30 days in advance? (Okay, 60 if you're staying at a Disney hotel.) Not calling six months in advance for dining reservations? Not getting up early to rope-drop the park to bag a few other popular attractions before your FP+ reservations kick in?

Those all are rookie mistakes, but none of them will sink your vacation. To do that, you must enter the realm of the truly foolish — doing something that even the almost-always-accommodating Disney will not forgive.

Such as hopping over a fence and trying to climb the Tree of Life at Disney's Animal Kingdom.

As the tweet mentioned, someone tried the same thing at Epcot's Mexico pavilion a couple years ago, climbing up the facade's steps for the benefit of a pal's social media video hit count.

From chatter on social media, Disney security arrived on the scene swiftly this time, and apprehended at least one of the Tree of Life climbers. No confirmation of anything from Disney yet, but it's hard not to imagine that such a transgression would not result in being escorted from the park, forfeiting your ticket and getting a lifetime ban from Disney Parks, to boot. Fences are there for reasons, and parks don't look kindly upon people who voluntarily put their safety and the safety of others at risk.

But, hey, at least they took one for the team and provided something for us to point at, roll our eyes, and either laugh at or get indignant about. People be crazy.

Replies (12)

December 4, 2017 at 11:45 AM · Frankly, the dumbest thing you can do at Disneyworld is wait for one of the parks to close before you try to leave. The monorails (and, from the Magic Kingdom, the boat) are so totally overloaded with people you might have to wait 30-45 minutes before you can even BOARD to go back to hotel.

After a long day in the hot sun with the kiddos, that 30+ minute wait (with nowhere to sit down!) will be the longest of your life, and is almost certain to cause dissension in your ranks.

December 4, 2017 at 11:50 AM · What an idiot, if this is done so he can get more followers on his social media account then they should ban his social media accounts and him for life.
December 4, 2017 at 11:51 AM · Hmm I always wondered how a lifetime ban to Disney parks work?

I highly doubt they have the pictures of all banned people at the turnstiles with a "do not let in" sign surrounding the mug shots. Seems very tough to enforce.

December 4, 2017 at 12:24 PM · @ Manny

What they DO have is your name and address and a picture of you. While they would never admit to it, Disney and Universal have been working on facial recognition software and other than the employees, the banned people list was the first thing they loaded. Such a system would be able to spot you well after you somehow made it into the park. This goes along with why masks are universally banned at most parks except for kids.

December 4, 2017 at 12:24 PM · Sorry guys, this was me, somebody double dogged dared me to climb this tree....

And I won...


December 4, 2017 at 1:36 PM · US Casinos have famously circulated a book of known cheats and card counters (Card counting is not cheating despite what the casino might think) for decades, so I'm sure there are some systems out there that work very well.
December 4, 2017 at 1:57 PM · Las Vegas casinos use facial recognition software. They catalog all of their guests.
December 5, 2017 at 1:04 AM · Manny, here's your answer. On top of that, most people wouldn't be willing to risk fines and/or jail time just to sneak into a park they're banned from.

As for this particular incident, it should be pretty obvious that if there is a fence without an opening, you're not supposed to be on the other side of it. I have no idea what these people were thinking, but in my opinion anyone entering a restricted area deserves immediate ejection and a minimum of a one year ban (more if it is a clearly dangerous area, like under a roller coaster).

December 5, 2017 at 7:08 AM · It's probably easier to keep people out with biometric fingerprint scans now the norm to get into theme parks. I'm sure if you get a lifetime trepass it has to involve law enforcement to make it official and documented. I'm going to assume they could easily fingerprint you during the trepass process (if they already don't) and upload the fingerprints into the system to flag you when you try to get back into the parks. And if someone has issues scanning their finger entering the park, then ask them for their ID which should hopefully remove all possible workarounds for people.
December 5, 2017 at 9:50 AM · Not only is that crazy, it's also the tree that--within recent memory--had some of its branches fall off. I wonder what the blood alcohol content was of the climber.
December 5, 2017 at 12:50 PM · @Brian - You could have at least waited until it was a "triple dog dare!"
December 6, 2017 at 11:04 AM · Thank you AJ and Jeff for the info! Definitely not planning on getting banned from any theme park that's for sure.

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