Millions of people plan visits to Disney parks each year. It is always exciting to enter the gates and to walk through the magical castles. Unfortunately, less and less people can afford this dream, especially in Anaheim’s Disneyland. Recently, ticket prices saw a sudden increase.
Although many parks have been raising their costs, some of Disney’s October hikes surpassed the country’s annual inflation rate of 8.2 percent. Guests will pay more for regular admission, valet parking at hotels, dining, souvenirs, and line-skipping services.Read More »
Ticket Price Hike
Inflation is making it difficult for the average household to spend money on frivolous vacations, including to Disney parks. Heightened ticket prices are making things worse. Disneyland determines the cost of a ticket based on season. While a few “lower season times” have remained at $104, peak season days have jumped up 9.2 percent. To hop between the two California parks, each person can expect to spend $60 more per day.
To top the high ticket prices, Disney is now charging more for services that used to be included with regular admission. For example, its Genie+, available for an extra charge, has replaced the free Fast Pass options.
To compare, Disney’s competition has raised prices. However, places like Universal Studios have seen increases that are less steep. This particular park has always been more expensive than Disney but has only increased prices by 3.9 percent over the last few years.
The Effect on Disney Crowds
Disney crowds appear to be as big as ever. Despite people threatening to avoid the extra expenses, droves of people continue to visit Florida and California to visit Mickey Mouse.
A recession may temporarily dampen crowd levels. However, the parks are not expected to feel crippling effects. In fact, “Lightning Lanes” continue to have long lines, which proves that guests are willing to pay for bonuses.
Is There Really a Cheap Time to Visit Disney Parks?
The Disney organization explains that it offers different price levels to meet all budgets. For instance, it provides various ticket tiers and hotel options so that families from all backgrounds can enjoy a trip to one of its attractions. Executives tell that they put “all choices in the hands of guests.” Visitors can select less crowded times so that admission is more affordable.
Despite the naysayers who do not like the new arrangements, Disney is still making money. This proves that the new formula is working. Longtime Disney lovers explain that budget accommodations and base tickets are available. However, the costs of eating and purchasing souvenirs often put things over the top. Many lower-middle class families feel as though they are being phased out. Things point to Disney positioning itself as a luxury brand. This is far from its original family-friendly image.
In the past, Disney has always sat at the top of people’s destination “wish lists.” However, certain experts believe that other brands are making strides to surpass the “mighty mouse.” Instead of relying on history, they are focusing on high-quality rides and jaw-dropping attractions.
Currently, places like Universal Studios do not offer the same amount of rides as the Disney brand. However, this particular park is close to revealing its new Super Nintendo World in Hollywood. In a few years, there is likely to be a major expansion in Universal Florida known as “Epic Universal” as well.
To be sure, the Disney experience is more than just rides. Often, it brings emotional responses from guests who have visited the parks with generations of family members. If this is true, individuals will continue to purchase tickets no matter the cost.