One Expert is Warning Tourists to Avoid Walt Disney World this Summer Due to Zika

By now we've all heard the news reports about the Zika virus, the mosquito-borne virus that has swept through Brazil and other countries in Latin America. Recently a professor from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine warns that some families should avoid visiting Central Florida due to the risk of Zika.

Will Zika keep you away from Disney this summer? Will Zika keep you away from Disney this summer?

While Zika has yet to reach Florida (or Texas or Louisiana), some experts including Professor Jimmy Whitworth from London say the summer temperatures are the perfect condition for the mosquitoes (Aedes aegypti, the primary Zika-carrying bug) to spread to the states.

The CDC is also concerned that an increase in Zika cases will happen soon as infected travelers return to the United States from affected areas in the Caribbean and South America.

Florida Governor Rick Scott
has asked President Obama to fund mosquito control measures and Zika preparedness kits in anticipation of an outbreak in the state. President Obama did request $1.9 billion in funds to fight the spread of Zika but Congress has not approved the plan.

While most scientists agree that Zika poses a small risk to the majority of people, pregnant women and couples who are trying to get pregnant should be aware of the risk of Zika as it does cause birth defects. Overall, only one in five people with Zika will become ill and usually with mild symptom.

Will the possibility of Zika appearing in Central Florida impact your travel plans to Walt Disney World this summer? Let us know in the comments.

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Kristen K. wrote on Sat, 06/04/2016 - 16:48:

Kristen K.'s picture

Walt Disney World does an amazing job at pest control, in 40 years of trips the only place I've ever been bit is over at Fort Wilderness. Even then it was only a bit or two, and mosquito generally LOVE me.

I think that as long as people who may be in a risk category take precautions by wearing some bug spray, WDW in general should continue to be a fairly safe place. Folks just have to use common sense.

Devyn B. wrote on Sat, 06/04/2016 - 23:23:

Devyn B.'s picture

I agree with Kristen! I go multiple times a year and know that she brings it up, I can't remember EVER having an issue with mosquitos down there. It never even crosses my mind having to wear bug spray. Which is crazy because here in MO I am eaten alive in 2 seconds when I go outside in the summer.

mary c. wrote on Sun, 06/05/2016 - 10:47:

mary c.'s picture

all of the disney's properties they spray every nite.
if your worried about zika in disneyworld, then it would be the whole state of florida!!.
all is being done for public safety by spraying.

Kristen K. wrote on Mon, 06/06/2016 - 22:26:

Kristen K.'s picture

It is actually the entire state Mary. As of today June 6th, 19 counties in Florida have reported cases of Zika (travel acquired) with Miam-Dade county the highest at reported 51 cases, and Orange County reporting 10. The reason there is cause for concern regarding travel related cases is because of blood transfer if they are bitten by another local mosquito which changes the nature of the spread entirely.

Like I said, Disney has extraordinary pest control measure as part of their standard practices, but for women who are pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant, I think it's worth taking along a little extra protection for peace of mind.

Steve wrote on Sat, 07/30/2016 - 13:01:

Steve's picture

My family and I spent the last week at Disney World and we all were bitten by mosquitos. Recently the governor announced Zika is active in Florida. We are very concerned to say the least.

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