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Todd Gabe
''Did people stop visiting theme parks before they closed due to COVID-19? Evidence from Magic Kingdom wait times''
( 2021, Vol. 41 No.4 )
This paper examines attraction wait times—a proxy for the number of people in a theme park—at Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom in the days leading up to its COVID-related shutdown on March 15, 2020. Results show 60-percent shorter wait times on March 15, relative to the same day without the COVID-related impacts, and our analysis suggests the number of Magic Kingdom visitors started its decline in the first week of March. The observed change in wait times happened shortly after the first U.S. death attributed, at the time, to coronavirus on February 29.
Keywords: COVID-19, Theme Parks, Magic Kingdom, Wait Times
JEL: L8 - Industry Studies: Services: General
I1 - Health: General
Manuscript Received : Oct 03 2021 Manuscript Accepted : Dec 29 2021

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