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We are entering the window when Disney might announce the official opening dates for its upcoming Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge lands at Disneyland and Walt Disney World's Disney's Hollywood Studios. The first opportunity for an announcement will be at Thursday's annual meeting for stockholders in The Walt Disney Company.
But we already have a strong idea when the lands will open. So we are inviting you to "place your bets" on the Star Wars lands' opening dates, too.
Last June, we forecast that the most likely opening date for Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge at the Disneyland Resort would be June 22, 2019. We forecasting a Saturday opening in the anticipation that Disney won't want to cause a public relations backlash by clogging area streets and freeways during a weekday rush hour, as fans cram the Mickey and Friends parking structure for the openings. We have no reason to come off that June forecast, so we are sticking with it.
As for Walt Disney World, we now are forecasting an opening date for Galaxy's Edge of October 1, 2019. That forecast is based in information from multiple sources on when the land's attractions are scheduled to be turned from construction crews over to operations cast members, accounting for time for training plus some fudge factor.
While we see little opportunity for soft opens at Disneyland, that fudge factor in Orlando gives us a slight chance that we could see softs in advance of October 1 at Disney World. But we believe that the prospect of opening the land on the resorts' 49th anniversary — kicking off a lead-up to the 50th one year later — will be too much of a PR coup for Disney to resist and that it will designate October 1 as the opening date.
Now, for all the disclaimers. These are not official announcements from Disney. Disney could choose to announce the Disneyland opening this week, then hold off on announcing Disney World's until later. Since both lands share a common design, any last-minute delays at Disneyland could affect when construction could turn over Disney World's project, potentially pushing back the Hollywood Studios opening.
And finally, Disney could decide that it wants to hold a joint media event in Florida for the openings of Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge and the other big attraction opening at Disney's Hollywood Studios this fall, Mickey and Minnie's Runaway Railway. If that becomes the case, when the Mickey ride is ready factors into the official opening date for Galaxy's Edge... even though we believe that the Star Wars land will be ready and potentially soft-opened to guests around October 1.
What's your best guess for the openings of Galaxy's Edge? And if you are planning to visit the new lands already, when are you looking to be there?Tweet
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