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Disney World Low Attendance Paradox

drizgirl

Well-Known Member
I think it's all a bit of an illusion. The crowds in some areas may be slightly lighter and people are saying it's the price hikes reaching its max but tbh, I bet the crowds are actually as busy.
Even if the park is "as busy" as it usually is in the summer, I think they had much higher expectations after their huge investment in SWGE.
 

bUU

Well-Known Member
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I’m sure you got an “A-“ in that course...
You don't get letter grades when you are teaching the class - you get money.

Per guest spending is the #1 tracked financial metric in wdw...
Correct - not attendance.

now that VARIABLE of attendance times per guest spending tells them something.
Remarkably, they have a different way of measuring the result of that multiplication directly.

No econ lectures...you can’t account for all of Disney’s variables
That's what they said about a lot of things then came Tucker.
 

wdisney9000

Well-Known Member
I clicked on a live stream (Resort TV1) at HS on Friday evening (yesterday). Crowds definitely look much lighter, especially considering its a Friday. Definitely lighter crowds compared to when I visited in June a few weeks ago.

And before some pixie duster chimes in and twists my words around or builds a straw man, let me be clear. It wasnt a ghost town. This post is not saying that the parks are empty and Disney is doomed. I am simply saying that judging by the (live) video stream, HS had lighter crowds than what an average summer day/evening normally looks like.
 

Dead2009

Well-Known Member
I clicked on a live stream (Resort TV1) at HS on Friday evening (yesterday). Crowds definitely look much lighter, especially considering its a Friday. Definitely lighter crowds compared to when I visited in June a few weeks ago.

And before some pixie duster chimes in and twists my words around or builds a straw man, let me be clear. It wasnt a ghost town. This post is not saying that the parks are empty and Disney is doomed. I am simply saying that judging by the (live) video stream, HS had lighter crowds than what an average summer day/evening normally looks like.
I firmly believe we've come full circle on the crowd issue. Just a few months ago everyone was complaining that the crowds were too huge and Disney needed to do something to stretch them out. Now it's a complaint that there aren't enough people going and it's now worrysome.
 
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wdisney9000

Well-Known Member
I firmly believe we've come full circle on the crowd issue. Just a few months ago everyone was complaining that the crowds were too huge and Disney needed to do something to stretch them out. Now it's a complaint that there aren't enough people going and it's now worrysome.
I wouldnt say people are complaining about low crowd levels. At least I have not seen any posts expressing that sentiment.

A part of the problem (IMO) has been the cutbacks on staffing which cause longer lines in the QS locations and the carts that serve snacks/drinks/booze, etc.
 

Pooh.sHoneyHuntTDL

Well-Known Member
I firmly believe we've come full circle on the crowd issue. Just a few months ago everyone was complaining that the crowds were too huge and Disney needed to do something to stretch them out. Now it's a complaint that there aren't enough people going and it's now worrysome.
People aren't complaining that the crows are too huge. They are complaining that the wait times/lines are too long even with small crowds because of short staffing.
 

WDW Pro

Well-Known Member
It has been a lot quieter than expected.
WDW isn't nearly as far off projections as Disneyland, and Magic Kingdom attendance has been only slightly below average. But EPCOT and Hollywood Studios have taken quite the hit this summer. Too many eggs may have been placed in the SW:GE basket, and we may see a few lean years as they find ways to offset too-high ticket prices with non-stop promotions. I also think the price increases for annual passes were just ridiculous, and I'm not sure why they're going that route rather than increasing capacity with the goal of increasing volume ticket sales rather than increasing the base price of entry.
 

marni1971

WDW History nut
Premium Member
WDW isn't nearly as far off projections as Disneyland, and Magic Kingdom attendance has been only slightly below average. But EPCOT and Hollywood Studios have taken quite the hit this summer. Too many eggs may have been placed in the SW:GE basket, and we may see a few lean years as they find ways to offset too-high ticket prices with non-stop promotions. I also think the price increases for annual passes were just ridiculous, and I'm not sure why they're going that route rather than increasing capacity with the goal of increasing volume ticket sales rather than increasing the base price of entry.
You got it :)
 

JIMINYCR

Well-Known Member
It has been a lot quieter than expected.
Yes it has been quieter. But my point I was trying to make was that crowds HAD been oppressive, people HAD been reporting it was affecting their pleasure, and it HAD been predicted to drop. So there shouldnt be a massive call that all of a sudden Disney is failing from low numbers. The numbers WILL go back up in time. Theres no reason for panic, doom & gloom because we knew this was how things might be going at this time.
 

marni1971

WDW History nut
Premium Member
Yes it has been quieter. But my point I was trying to make was that crowds HAD been oppressive, people HAD been reporting it was affecting their pleasure, and it HAD been predicted to drop. So there shouldnt be a massive call that all of a sudden Disney is failing from low numbers. The numbers WILL go back up in time. Theres no reason for panic, doom & gloom because we knew this was how things might be going at this time.
No, it was neither predicted nor expected.

The company has rushed internal mitigation procedures into place to last certainly into the fall. It’s not an emergency by far but it is prudent limitation of liabilities.
 

JIMINYCR

Well-Known Member
No, it was neither predicted nor expected.

The company has rushed internal mitigation procedures into place to last certainly into the fall. It’s not an emergency by far but it is prudent limitation of liabilities.
Plenty of TA's HAD said their clients were saying they would wait to go to WDW until things were competed.
 

Bleed0range

Well-Known Member
From my POV, I intend to visit the parks again but the prices are so high now I keep putting it further and further back because if I can only go once in awhile I want to go when SWGE is completely open and might as well try to squeeze in Mickey and Minnie too. So that’s probably at least summer 2020 now instead of this October as planned or even spring 2020.

Why spend all that money with so much incomplete? If I wait I can get the Skyliner, SWGE, Mickey and Minnie and if I wait longer I could get the added benefit of Tron and Guardians/Rat.

I don’t think I can go every year anymore so it’s better to pack it all in for the value. Maybe a lot of people are considering that.

I have heard a lot of people say they’re simply waiting a “few years” for SWGE to die down in popularity.
 

WDW Pro

Well-Known Member
There are several things I would advise Disney Parks to implement for WDW in order to increase ticket sales, and thus all that in-park revenue.

1) Offer lower level blackout dated Annual Passes nationwide, not just in Florida. There are many guests who make 2-3 trips to WDW a year and would enjoy having an annual pass (which often increases their attendance), but aren't willing to fork out $900 or more per ticket... and who can blame them?
2) There should be Passholder lounges in each park. These could be places that allow guests to sit in comfortable chairs, enjoy air conditioning, grab a soda, water, tea, or lemonade from a dispenser, charge their phones, etc. Again, adding perceived perks generates increased buy-in.
3) There are many potential guests out there who simply cannot afford a trip to Disney World when tickets are running $100 a day and they've got a family of five. However, if there were half-day non-MK tickets for $60, you would likely have an influx of guests eager to get in there and spend their discretionary funds. These already exist for conference attendees, so the infrastructure is mostly there.
 

The_Jobu

Well-Known Member
Whenever I think "this is it, this will finally dip attendance at WDW" it just keeps going up. I give up trying to predict things now. The locals are blocked from Star Wars in Cali, and other than opening day, no one's in a rush to see it. Yet, regardless of its content, it will be packed at WDW. Price gouging, bad word of mouth, poor reviews, nothing matters in Orlando anymore.

I think I just talked myself into an existential crisis. Please excuse me.
 

bUU

Well-Known Member
Whenever I think "this is it, this will finally dip attendance at WDW" it just keeps going up. I give up trying to predict things now.
Welcome to the finish line of the Kübler-Ross model. So many Disney fans languish in Denial and Anger; some make it to Bargaining and Depression; only a few seem to make it to Acceptance that our own personal preferences don't govern what's best for other and/or for the company.

Price gouging, bad word of mouth, poor reviews, nothing matters in Orlando anymore.
Well, maybe you have a little more work to do - putting in perspective the very narrow pockets of "bad word of mouth" and "poor reviews", and understanding that the term "price gouging" doesn't even come close to being applicable, for a couple of reasons.

I think I just talked myself into an existential crisis. Please excuse me.
Take heart; you're further along than many.
 

CLEtoWDW

Well-Known Member
Guests may care about tracking attendance. Disney cares about tracking revenue. If they can make more money with fewer customers, that is a win.
This!!!!
Disney would much rather have 100,000 high revenue generating guests than 130,000 moderate/low revenue generating guests.
 
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