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Labor cost cutting measures begin at Walt Disney World as the company enters Q1

homerdance

Premium Member
What do you gain from lying about this?

Magic Kingdom is blocked this week. All other parks are open this week except for Friday and Saturday.

Block out dates for the rest of October have not been published.
Fixed that. It’s not a nefarious motive that I have to lie, it was an honest mistake. I question your motives regarding your love of genie $+

Still, very odd that they know the park reservations and they know the attendance is going to be light and they continue these blackouts.
 

GladToBeHear

Well-Known Member
I have dealt with people like this. Best advice is to make like a bobblehead and nod in agreement with every suggestion they make no matter how asinine the suggestion. Any attempt to educate them will put a target on the back of your head.
This is what I imagine is going on internally at times like this. And the fact that these guys' names are also Bob just makes it more apt.
 

homerdance

Premium Member
I just left the boardwalk, was in a 3 bedroom grand villa. When I arrived the shower head in the master bathroom was just hanging off the wall, and the fridge was warm and didn’t work.

Since this was DVC I don’t expect much mousekeeping but at least check the freakin rooms before people check in.
How long did it take for them to fix it after you reported it?
 

ParentsOf4

Well-Known Member
Can’t really blame them when people expected massive crowds and are instead waiting 30 min for RotR…I do remember stating many days back that I didn’t expect the October crowds people on here were afraid of…
We were at WDW for the 50th and saw lots of staff at the theme parks, stores, and hotels standing around with apparently little to do. So much so that this was the first time my wife ever commented on it.

I suspect Disney was expecting massive crowds that simply were not there.

We arrived at the Boardwalk Inn at 4 pm, prime check-in time, and were greeted by no less than 4 Cast Members standing in the lobby, with another 3 behind the counter.

We were one of those who waited less than 30 minutes for several attractions at the Magic Kingdom on October 1. We even park hopped to DHS that evening and waited less than 30 minutes for ROTR (posted 40 minute wait time).

It just was not crowded at WDW the entire week.

It seemed the longest waits were for specialty merchandise being sold exclusively on October 1. Wanting to avoid the morning rush, we arrived at 10:30. As we did so, we walked past numerous other Guests who were leaving the Magic Kingdom with bags and bags of merchandise. My impression was that many in attendance that day were primarily there for the specialty merchandise.

There were times earlier in the week when Universal felt more crowded. (We did a split stay between the Hard Rock and Boardwalk.)

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ParentsOf4

Well-Known Member
That’s debatable and not really accurate. Right now all indications are that lower attendance is being driven my Covid fear, economic impacts, and loss of international travel. Just like what is negatively impacting all sectors of travel and tourism. Disney’s lowered standards does not appear to be a factor….. yet.
In addition to COVID, Disney raising prices and then not offering significant discounts probably was an important factor.

Lots of Guests were waiting for the usual Fall 30% discounts which never came.

Combine that with hotels rates that increased by 20% or more in just a couple of years, and Guests were facing 50% sticker shock when they went to book their 2021 trips.

The reality is that the opening of All Star Sports is delayed indefinitely while All Star Music opened at 30% capacity. Disney’s least expensive hotels are just not there for cheaper bookings, adding even more fuel to the (cost) fire.

Consumers are getting nailed with inflation in lots of unexpected places. For those who don’t remember the early 1980s, this is the first time they’ve dealt with real inflation their entire lives.

Disney is not winning anyone over by jacking up prices at a time when consumers are being forced to spend their dollars on essentials.
 

castlecake2.0

Well-Known Member
The labor reduction is most likely in merchandise and food & beverage during non peak times. The new fiscal year probably brought new forecasts and budgets. I have not heard from my friend who’s a custodial leader about them having to cut anything in their area. Attractions is usually safe from this too as they need a certain amount of people for the attraction to operate. There is also a mass of internal job postings coming to help redistribute cast to areas that need it. This is more about cutting excess where it really isn’t needed. Just a quick example: a ODF cart at Epcot could have been scheduling 4 Cast a shift based on attendance being at X. Now they’ve re forecasted the quarter and expect attendance to be down 10%, so now that ODF cart doesn’t need the fourth CM because they aren’t selling as much and don’t need as many stock runs. The line will still move as quick, the cart will still be stocked, etc, but now you don’t have CM4 standing there doing nothing(or worse, distracting other cast from doing their job).
 

castlecake2.0

Well-Known Member
We were at WDW for the 50th and saw lots of staff at the theme parks, stores, and hotels standing around with apparently little to do. So much so that this was the first time my wife ever commented on it.

I suspect Disney was expecting massive crowds that simply were not there.

We arrived at the Boardwalk Inn at 4 pm, prime check-in time, and were greeted by no less than 4 Cast Members standing in the lobby, with another 3 behind the counter.

We were one of those who waited less than 30 minutes for several attractions at the Magic Kingdom on October 1. We even park hopped to DHS that evening and waited less than 30 minutes for ROTR (posted 40 minute wait time).

It just was not crowded at WDW the entire week.

Frankly, there were times earlier in the week when Universal felt more crowded. (We did a split stay between the Hard Rock and Boardwalk.)

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That’s what I’ve been noticing too. It gets to the point where everything is done/stocked/cleaned, guests don’t need help, so the cast start talking to each other. The other day I was at a resort gift shop and there must have been 10 or more people working. It was excessive, especially for the size of the shop. I mentioned too I’ve seen it all over epcot, cast just wandering, handing out maps, greeting people. It’s great to see, but is not sustainable.
 

ToTBellHop

Well-Known Member
In the Parks
No
The labor reduction is most likely in merchandise and food & beverage during non peak times. The new fiscal year probably brought new forecasts and budgets. I have not heard from my friend who’s a custodial leader about them having to cut anything in their area. Attractions is usually safe from this too as they need a certain amount of people for the attraction to operate. There is also a mass of internal job postings coming to help redistribute cast to areas that need it. This is more about cutting excess where it really isn’t needed. Just a quick example: a ODF cart at Epcot could have been scheduling 4 Cast a shift based on attendance being at X. Now they’ve re forecasted the quarter and expect attendance to be down 10%, so now that ODF cart doesn’t need the fourth CM because they aren’t selling as much and don’t need as many stock runs. The line will still move as quick, the cart will still be stocked, etc, but now you don’t have CM4 standing there doing nothing(or worse, distracting other cast from doing their job).
Let’s hope that’s all this is. Obviously Disney shouldn’t pay someone to stand around.
 

Nubs70

Well-Known Member
In addition to COVID, Disney raising prices and then not offering significant discounts probably was an important factor.

Lots of Guests were waiting for the usual Fall 30% discounts which never came.

Combine that with hotels rates that increased by 20% or more in just a couple of years, and Guests were facing 50% sticker shock when they went to book their 2021 trips.

The reality is that the opening of All Star Sports is delayed indefinitely while All Star Music opened at 30% capacity. Disney’s least expensive hotels are just not there for cheaper bookings, adding even more fuel to the (cost) fire.

Consumers are getting nailed with inflation in lots of unexpected places. For those who don’t remember the early 1980s, this is the first time they’ve dealt with real inflation their entire lives.

Disney is not winning anyone over by jacking up prices at a time when consumers are being forced to spend their dollars on essentials.
Are we beginning to see that inflation is not as transitory as some have hoped?

Disposable income will forced to non discretionary needs. Leaving travel and leisure to decline just as pre inflationary price increases have been put in place. Looks like the downturn situation hypothesized over the last years of Bob the Elder is solidifying.

DIS best hope streaming does real well and the sports betting takes off.
 

wutisgood

Well-Known Member
Once I got vaccinated I booked spring and then this latest fall trip.I have never seen as many people who were first time at universal during the spring trip (fast and furious had a wait) as i suspect disney reservations screwed people but in fall disney was still light and universal was moderate. Fall was pretty light everywhere though on seasonal events. I expected on the disney side people were waiting on the 50th but I think the initial surge is going to be followed my missed numbers. Many of the people I know or work with are to spooked even with rising wages to take a big trip right now. They just started getting ahead again and food prices crazy going up are a killer.
 

Sirwalterraleigh

Premium Member
I'm confused. I thought Disney was trying and struggling to hire additional, necessary workers to staff the parks and resorts? And now they're cutting?
It’s similar to trickle down economics…in other words: complete crap

Not surprised. I assumed they were already doing this and it would continue. Times are still tough right now for travel and tourism. And then add on top of that the company's other obligations...
Disney is not hurting…it should be…but it’s worth more than ever.
Both are true at the same time
When you operate with impunity from your customers…they can be
It would be nice if Disney wasn't so obvious about slashing their own costs at the same time they raise prices.

I know some are unhappy with the negativity that the 50th seems to have unleashed, but it is increasingly hard not to see the company is utterly cynical in the way it treats its customers.
You noticed that too?
If I had to guess, this is a direct result of crowds not materializing post-Covid like they expected (or rather, Delta changed things). Hopefully some of these will return once crowds return, but my fear is that this will become the new baseline.
You probably know the odds on this happening
There is a definite plateau being felt throughout the hospitality industry...
As reported in the business forecasts

Can’t really blame them when people expected massive crowds and are instead waiting 30 min for RotR…I do remember stating many days back that I didn’t expect the October crowds people on here were afraid of…
Anyone expecting “massive crowds” was not really paying attention these last 2 years.
 

Sirwalterraleigh

Premium Member
In addition to COVID, Disney raising prices and then not offering significant discounts probably was an important factor.

Lots of Guests were waiting for the usual Fall 30% discounts which never came.

Combine that with hotels rates that increased by 20% or more in just a couple of years, and Guests were facing 50% sticker shock when they went to book their 2021 trips.

The reality is that the opening of All Star Sports is delayed indefinitely while All Star Music opened at 30% capacity. Disney’s least expensive hotels are just not there for cheaper bookings, adding even more fuel to the (cost) fire.

Consumers are getting nailed with inflation in lots of unexpected places. For those who don’t remember the early 1980s, this is the first time they’ve dealt with real inflation their entire lives.

Disney is not winning anyone over by jacking up prices at a time when consumers are being forced to spend their dollars on essentials.
They’re playing a pretty obvious game to shift pricing (again)…and it doesn’t appear to be smooth sailing this time.

there are price limits to things in wdw…I swear but nobody will ever believe. Running into a glass ceiling hurts your head just as much as a steel one.
It looks like Slaphead is just using all of iger’s old tricks…he just is impatient and not at good as sneaking them by the mass consumer-ate.
That’s what I’ve been noticing too. It gets to the point where everything is done/stocked/cleaned, guests don’t need help, so the cast start talking to each other. The other day I was at a resort gift shop and there must have been 10 or more people working. It was excessive, especially for the size of the shop. I mentioned too I’ve seen it all over epcot, cast just wandering, handing out maps, greeting people. It’s great to see, but is not sustainable.

Let’s hope that’s all this is. Obviously Disney shouldn’t pay someone to stand around.
Their attendance is a lot lighter than they’d admit or any of the Royal guard dreamt…it seems. They’ll also never fully admit it.
Are we beginning to see that inflation is not as transitory as some have hoped?

Disposable income will forced to non discretionary needs. Leaving travel and leisure to decline just as pre inflationary price increases have been put in place. Looks like the downturn situation hypothesized over the last years of Bob the Elder is solidifying.

DIS best hope streaming does real well and the sports betting takes off.
Travel is the first thing to be cut in a slowdown and to the highest degree. It’s completely unnecessary by most measures. Strap in.
 

maxairmike

Well-Known Member
The dorms are not profitable.

Well, you'd have to ask American Campus Communities about that, but I'm sure the lease or purchase price on the land they paid Disney is a nice chunk. However, ACC being a private company, I'm sure they're still turning a profit, or are set to before too long. After all, the rent for ACC is pretty much guaranteed and the half of the facility that is open appears well occupied since they can't even fit all the residents' cars on site from what I've heard.
 

EpcoTim

Premium Member
In addition to COVID, Disney raising prices and then not offering significant discounts probably was an important factor.

Lots of Guests were waiting for the usual Fall 30% discounts which never came.

Combine that with hotels rates that increased by 20% or more in just a couple of years, and Guests were facing 50% sticker shock when they went to book their 2021 trips.

The reality is that the opening of All Star Sports is delayed indefinitely while All Star Music opened at 30% capacity. Disney’s least expensive hotels are just not there for cheaper bookings, adding even more fuel to the (cost) fire.

Consumers are getting nailed with inflation in lots of unexpected places. For those who don’t remember the early 1980s, this is the first time they’ve dealt with real inflation their entire lives.

Disney is not winning anyone over by jacking up prices at a time when consumers are being forced to spend their dollars on essentials.

They’re playing a pretty obvious game to shift pricing (again)…and it doesn’t appear to be smooth sailing this time.

there are price limits to things in wdw…I swear but nobody will ever believe. Running into a glass ceiling hurts your head just as much as a steel one.
It looks like Slaphead is just using all of iger’s old tricks…he just is impatient and not at good as sneaking them by the mass consumer-ate.



Their attendance is a lot lighter than they’d admit or any of the Royal guard dreamt…it seems. They’ll also never fully admit it.

Travel is the first thing to be cut in a slowdown and to the highest degree. It’s completely unnecessary by most measures. Strap in.

An important factor here is, I believe, Disney is not attracting the affluent guests they so desperately want. Jack and Diane are booking, Jeff and Mark are not.

The “we’ll keep away the riff raff” business model isn’t panning out. The flip flop crowd still wants to attend, the Italian loafer set does not.
 

hopemax

Well-Known Member
We were at WDW for the 50th and saw lots of staff at the theme parks, stores, and hotels standing around with apparently little to do. So much so that this was the first time my wife ever commented on it.

I suspect Disney was expecting massive crowds that simply were not there.
But how could they have expected that? Park reservations for MK for Oct 1 weren't available, and haven't been except a few refreshes that if you weren't clued into here, or a blog that posted about them you would have missed. I wanted to be there, my Dad wanted to be there. But I wasn't going to fly 2500 miles if I couldn't be guaranteed to be in the MK that day, and I was also having trouble getting a hotel booking when I was doing the looking, so I gave up. I doubt I was the only one. Disney controlled the park reservations, they knew exactly the range of how many people were going to show up at a park each day. Unless a lot of people made park reservations when they opened back in Spring, and then never bothered to cancel them when they realized they weren't going to make the trip. That's the problem with pinch points. Once that important thing is sold out a lot of people aren't going to bother with the rest.

I also hope that Disney bothers to staff the France Food & Wine booth. My Dad tried about 5 times to eat there. On each trip, we counted up to 10 people staffing the Canada booth, and all 3 registers open. And as a result, there was a very short queue. Meanwhile, France had one register open each time he checked, one person checking receipts and 2 people in the booth. And a line that wrapped around that newsstand.

IMO, Disney is playing with fire way more than they have in the past. People have had to put up with a lot during the last 2 years. First the pandemic, and now all the shortages. And for the most part, I think people have been pretty understanding about "unusual circumstances." But at some point, customers are going to want their back scratched, wooed a little in return for all their deprivation, patience and understanding. Even if it's just a friendly and competent interaction.

We just got back from Disneyland (since we couldn't do the 50th) and one of the most frustrating things was when the Plaza opened, I along with a lot of other people were there to get the chicken. There were two lines and ours was not moving. It turns out, that despite it being opening, despite people getting To Go orders at a much more frequent rate for months now, they did not have the To Go containers stocked at the food station. We were waiting for someone to go dig them out from the back and then make the guest's To Go orders. That is just fundamental and basic good service. A friend was at the 50th, trying to get a Coke from Captain Cooks. All the syrup for the Coke was empty, and so when she gave up and tried to fill her cup with another type of drink her chip said she had used all her refills. She asked the CM for assistance and the CM just shrugged, didn't know what to do either about the syrup in the machines or the cup. So my friend paid $4.49 for a drink and ended up with a partial cup of Orange soda and even speaking to somewhere got nothing. And now people stay counter service F&B is overstaffed? If you can't even get this type of stuff, how much more patience are you going to extend?

If WDW is "overstaffed" at F&B, things like that shouldn't happen, because obviously there were tasks to be performed. My earlier trips this year had several run-ins with empty napkin dispensers, empty fork dispensers, etc. Staff standing around is no guarantee that all tasks have been performed, and that was certainly true when my Mom was a CM and found herself having to cleanup many messes because no one else bothered, and there was no penalty for not doing them, and no reward for cleaning them up. I have on more than one recent occasion heard morning shift people moaning because the evening shift hadn't bothered to do many of their closing / get ready for tomorrow tasks.

This Spring there may have been a lot of pent up demand, but how many people weren't able to satisfy it in some way during the Summer of Freedom? Now that they've lived so long without a Disney trip, has the withdrawal worn off enough that when they plug their dates into the cost calculators they don't end up saying to themselves, "You've got to be kidding me!" Friend that had the soda problem, called my Dad last night and asked he wanted to go back to Universal. She had planned more WDW days, and had already done Universal, but all the Disney problems just became too much for her to ruin another day, when she had the choice to do something else.
 

Bullseye1967

Is that who I am?
Premium Member
They’re playing a pretty obvious game to shift pricing (again)…and it doesn’t appear to be smooth sailing this time.

there are price limits to things in wdw…I swear but nobody will ever believe. Running into a glass ceiling hurts your head just as much as a steel one.
It looks like Slaphead is just using all of iger’s old tricks…he just is impatient and not at good as sneaking them by the mass consumer-ate.



Their attendance is a lot lighter than they’d admit or any of the Royal guard dreamt…it seems. They’ll also never fully admit it.

Travel is the first thing to be cut in a slowdown and to the highest degree. It’s completely unnecessary by most measures. Strap in.
Just talked to a well placed friend. The "gate" is off 31 percent from projected for the first week. Damage control is going on now.
 

GhostHost1000

Premium Member
I know Disney will blame covid for the smaller than expected crowds but I think there is more going on here than they maybe even want to recognize or acknowledge

I know several people, regular travelers, including myself, that just don’t have the same feel for Disney right now related to some of the recent trends, announcements, and direction and haven’t been going as often or at all and it has nothing to do with covid
 

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