Josh D’Amaro says rising prices and halting services at Walt Disney World and Disneyland Resort are ‘an inevitable result of progress’

As prices continue to soar at Walt Disney World and Disneyland, Josh D’Amaro describes it as “the inevitable result of progress” according to a new article from the the wall street journal.

Over the past two years there have been many changes that impact the typical guest experience at Walt Disney World. The most notable change being the launch of Genie+, the app-based feature that costs $15 per person per day ($20 at Disneyland Resort) to skip the lines at most attractions. Other changes include charging fees or completely eliminating services that were previously free to guests: like Disney’s Magical Express bus transportation to and from Orlando International Airport, MagicBands, and parking.

According to the article, “Disney’s theme park pricing is determined by ‘pure supply and demand,’ a company spokeswoman said. “No different from airplanes, hotels, or cruise ships. .” In the quarter that ended Jan. 1, Disney National Parks set records for quarterly revenue and operating profit, then broke them six months later. For the quarter that s Ended July 2, the business unit that includes theme parks also reported record revenue of $5.42 billion and record operating profit of $1.65 billion.Josh D ‘Amaro, president of Disney’s Parks, Experiences and Products Division, said the changes have given Guests more choices about how to spend their time and money at the parks, while making the parks “extremely successful on the trading plan ‘.’

The article goes on to follow guests like Sara Suvada, a Starbucks shift supervisor from Auburn Hills, Michigan, who recently spent “about $5,000” visiting Walt Disney World. For Sara, “memories are worth more than gold,” she said. “Even though I suffered from overdraft charges once I got home when reality set in.”

Memories are worth more than gold. Even though I suffered from overdraft charges once I got home, when reality set in.

Walt Disney World guest, Sara Suvada

Meanwhile, other guests like Renea Warren think that “because of the astronomical expense, I really think the magic is being taken away.” Although Warren owns a timeshare about 20 minutes from Walt Disney World, her family has begun to consider visiting rival Orlando attractions like Universal Studios Florida and SeaWorld since “come back to Disney every year is no longer an option.”

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Disneyland annual passholders like David Arone, a 50-year-old gym teacher and volleyball coach from Redondo Beach, Calif., aren’t as willing to keep spending. “I really hate nickel-and-diming,” Arone said. Arone is a pass holder who visits “more than 100 times a year”, mainly because of the fond memories the park evokes for him personally. But on a recent trip, Arone wore a homemade t-shirt with the phrase “Chapek Killed the Magic” on it – of course referring to Disney CEO Bob Chapek, whom Arone blames for the price hike and… other changes.

Although Disney posted record profits earlier this month, they also reported that price increases were offset by an “unfavorable attendance mix”, which many fans interpreted as a reference to pass holders. annual. According to the article, some annual pass holders began visiting the parks wearing shirts labeled “Unfavourable” in protest. Meanwhile, Disney says “adverse mix” is financial language for investors and “not a consumer term.”

While the goodwill many fans have for Disney Parks appears to be on life support, profits continue to soar. As long as customers are ready to come home from vacation and suffer from overdraft fees, it’s hard to see things changing anytime soon.

What do you think of the new, more expensive version of visiting the Disney parks? Will you stop visiting because of the price? Let us know in the comments.

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