CNN  — 

The wait is over for people who love the likes of Hagrid’s Motorbike Adventure and the Krakatau Aqua Coaster.

Universal Orlando Resort in Florida reopened to the public on Friday after closing in March because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Limited crowd capacity was the order of the day at its three parks: Universal Studios Florida (which opened at 9 a.m.), Islands of Adventure (9 a.m.) and Volcano Bay (10 a.m.).

Before it could reopen, Universal had to submit a detailed plan to the Orange County Economic Recovery Task Force for approval. After the task force’s OK, Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis signed off.

Like other amusement and theme parks reopening, the resort has new safety measures and features in effect.

App it

Its Universal Orlando Resort App lets people makes purchases from tickets to food and drinks on their smartphones – lessening the number of times visitors need to touch surfaces.

Visitors can also reserve ride times with the app.

Safety guidelines

Universal has new safety guidelines for guests. Here are a few of them:

– Face masks: They are a requirement for guests 2 and older. If a visitor forgets to bring a mask, the park has them for sale.

Universal Orlando Resort in Florida reopened to the public on Friday. Guests had to get their temperatures checked before entering the resort.

– Temperature checks: Guests with a temperature of 100.4 degrees or higher aren’t allowed to enter.

– Space it out: Social distancing is set up for rides and lines. And Universal is telling guests to hand sanitize before boarding a ride.

What it’s like at the park

For starters, stage performers had on their masks or kept a careful distance from each other if performing without one. And audiences were well away from the staging areas.

Hogsmeade, a Harry Potter-themed area in the Islands of Adventure, proved popular, and there were definitely groups of people packing in closer than six feet apart in footage captured by The Dis blog at

But roller coasters such as the Incredible Hulk went out with half-filled green trains to maintain social distancing during the thrill ride.

One of the people there for the first day was Dr. Channing Willoughby, who lives near Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.

While wearing his mask, he told CNN: “I felt that they really had a good handle on safety. I’m a physician, so I keep up on what’s happening in the world. And in terms of preventative measures, I thought Universal was ahead of the curve, so I felt very safe bringing my family here.”

First-time guests

Members of an extended family from Georgia and Texas told CNN they were on vacation in Florida already and found out about Universal reopening, so they came for their first visit ever.

Their logic? Since no guests had been there for months, reopening day would actually be the best time to visit, rather than waiting for larger crowds later.