It’s been a while since I did an old fashion Disney post. Recent events have made it a prime time to do so.
As you may have figured out, I’m not a Disney defender. From 1985 till 2010, I was a HUGE Disney defender, but Disney managed to drive me away.
The biggest reason I turned my back on Disney wasn’t the cost, it was the value. The value dropped off the face of the Earth, as Disney reduced the guest experience to a shell of its former self. If my last trip in 2011 taught me anything, it was that Disney no longer cared about the guest experience. They were solely focused on profits.
Two big stories popped up in the last week. They go hand in hand with my biggest complaint about Disney World. The two topics are the new pricing structure and elimination of a third of the Citizens of Hollywood.
In a move that proved how little Disney cares for (non-affluent) families, Disney introduced a new tiered pricing structure. Now you will pay more for busier days. Let’s read between the lines here. If you are locked into certain periods of time off (teachers), you are now being punished. If you can’t pull your kids out of school (most families) you can now pay through the nose.
Are you getting anything in return for these massive price hikes? No. You are actually getting less. First, this is a MASSIVE price hike. It’s the biggest of all time. Disney would argue that with some political mumbo jumbo, but the fact is, this change will result in average price paid jumping to an unprecedented level.
Now, how are you getting less?
The trend of butchering the guest experience continues. Disney has consistently reduced the value of your ticket by eliminating entertainment. The most recent example is the elimination of a third of the Citizens of Hollywood. In translation – one third of the best part of Disney Studios has been flushed down the toilet. That cut seriously reduces the value of visiting Disney Studios. If you go back over the last six years, you’ll find similar cuts all around Disney World. The guest experience is a shadow of what it once was.
I know I walked away. For a long time I thought I was the only one. Recently my mother walked away. I was stunned by that. My mother has been a huge Disney fan since her first trip to Disney Land as a child. We are talking about someone who has been a fan for more than five decades. She said she’s not going back. It’s not worth it anymore.
Before you point at me and say I influenced her, let me say this. My mother has no idea that I write this blog. She has no idea who A. Antonio or CMDTA is, nor has she ever even mentioned it. We haven’t talked about Disney in years.
My family is not the only one. For the first time we are seeing longtime fans walking away. Now is the time to fix the problem. If Disney waits until it impacts the bottom-line it will be far too late. They will find themselves crippled for years while Universal wipes the floor with them.