Disney Is Raising Its Ticket Prices…Again
by Bridget HallinanFebruary 12, 2018
“It’s the fifth hike in five years.”
“This isn’t the first time the company hiked admission costs, and it probably won’t be the last, as a trend report by AllEars—a Disney vacation planning site—shows. Prices have increased every February for the past five years.”
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The most expensive place on earth ™
They’re really trying to solve a problem at least I think they are. The park out here in CA has become awful. The waits for even the most basic rides are crazy. Dumbo >1hr??? Fastpass helps but when it is 10am and your fastpass says come back at 5pm that sucks too.
They’re trying to price out people using supply and demand. I don’t know if it is working. Friend of mine said it took 40 minutes just to get in to Disneyland on a non busy park day a few weeks ago.
2% (at Disney world) doesn’t seem unreasonable. Just your basic inflation increase.
We love Disney. To that end, when we plan a Disney trip it is “all-in” on Disney, no Universal, no Sea-World, the initial base tickets are VERY expensive everywhere. Disney wants people who stay and play. If you stay with Disney you get favorable everything! early access to Fast Pass reservations, early and late daily access to parks. Tickets discount the longer you stay.
Disney has a great product, I have seen it grow over 4 decades with my own eyes. It is important to realize you just can’t go there on a whim and expect to ride everything, its not possible, you must plan or you will be disappointed. Read books, there are people who write about planning Disney vacations. Even if you do a day trip, it is possible to make that experience better with planning.
Ticket prices will continue to rise and generations that grew up with Disney now bring their families. Disney continues to build attractions that excite and that will never end.
About tickets, in 1998 I bought a bunch of non-expiring 5 day park hoppers. I recently used a couple of days off it, when I brought it to the ticket window to use it, the clerk said, “Do you know how much you paid for this?” She said $199. $40/day with no expiration…Wow.
It does not have to be. We budget our Disney trips to be between $75 and $100 per day per person including all food, room, travel and entertainment. It is possible.
Disneyland (CA) has and always will have a real estate problem. Demand is huge, space is small. If you can stay in a local hotel on Harbor and walk in, much less stressful. For the best Disney experience you must plan ahead of time.
Disney World (FL) is a much different experience.
They definitely are. The daily ticket prices are front-and-center, but specifically in California, they’re increasing prices for annual passes since the locals account for such a significant chunk of the crowd there. For the once-a-year or less folks, the souvenir, food, and hotel increases are much more significant than the ticket prices.
About 5 years ago or so, I used to fly to California or Florida and go to Disney a lot - usually 2 or 3 times a year. During the recession, they were offering good deals on hotel and ticket packages. Once the demand kicked back in, they’ve been inundated and hiked their prices accordingly to try to better manage demand. It got to the point where the value just wasn’t there (long lines, high prices, etc) and I stopped going.
One other factor - the parks in the US, moreso WDW, are seeing a foreign tourist infusion. Even with the decline of foreign tourism in the US, Disney has become a very popular destination for wealthy foreign families, particularly from Brazil. They are starting to cater to that crowd as they are significantly more profitable than the “two kids and a dog” family that drives to Disney every few years and carries their lunch into the park.
If your problem is too many customers, just raise your prices - either you get fewer customers or you get paid to deal with it. Makes sense.
If there is anyone who wants to have a related conversation on how best to navigate these price changes and tips/tricks, do post as such.
I think what ends up happening is Disney overshoots with these price increases and has to end up discounting in the back (last time they did a 13 for 12 months promo on the annual pass). I dislike this because it just makes everything more complicated.
It is one of those situations where no one should pay the listed price, but those who are not savvy with their deals end up doing so.
There has been talk that this problem has been caused by a monthly payment program for passholders. This may be true in that it made the rather expensive passes more accessible to those with more moderate means, but the fact that the monthly program is not going way makes me doubt that Disney really wants to reduce crowds in sincerity.
Of course they don’t want get rid of crowds. To do that all they’d have to do expand, at least in FL. It’s not like they are out of space there.
The thing is when it comes to financial metrics, raising prices to “ease crowds” looks much better than expanding the parks. Significantly better.
I hear you. It’s essentially all about the rides. Me and my wife much prefer Enchanted Kingdom in the Philippines. http://www.enchantedkingdom.ph/
It’s about $10 / person to get in and wait times are much much less. I went on the Rio Grand ride like 8 times in one hour (towards closing time).