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News Walt Disney World theme park ticket price increases go into effect March 12 2019

flynnibus

Premium Member
Very true but I think the assumption is that there is only "one place" to get a good vacation. Now Disney does have a unique brand that lord knows they market very well but unlike many here I don't think the public is stupid.

And this ties back to the image and brand Disney has built for generations now... that a Disney vacation is the "must do" thing that every parent should treat their child to. This image and legend fuels much of Disney's business.. and why people have advocated for a long time that damage to that image will have impacts that take a long time to play out. When this generation does not have the same image of Disney that their parents did... when it's time to take their kids somewhere.. will they continue to pay the Disney premium their parents were willing to do?

That's why these things aren't put to bed with simple YoY comparisons. Disney built this image and reputation over generations... it takes a lot to knock that out for people.

That's why I always say the consumer is in control. I totally, totally agree that satisfaction is not a static, binary thing so many Disney vacationers look at the "overall" price because there are so many ways to cut cost but I do think if the overall feeling was that they were not getting what they paid for or that they were getting "fleeced" then we would/will see a decrease in crowds.

Another important consumer factor to remember is the idea of "what they know" and familiarity. People are resistant to try new things... the most popular place in town isn't necessarily the best.. it may just be the most comfortable for people.

That plays out in vacation choices too... you'll probably find way more people repeat vacation destinations than those who want something new every time. It takes a big hit for those people or some other change to get them to venture out and give up their "comfort food".

An easy way to think about it is... imagine if there was no history for Disney.. and this was a brand new product. What would the reactions be like then? The same? Different?
 

olie64

Well-Known Member
The person with the disposable income and willingness to 'buy their way out of pain' will pay the price to get the end game. "hey it made my kid happy... so what if it cost $3000... saved me from having cranky kids and they got to meet Mickey all by themselves!". It's 'worth it' to them to pay to make the pain go away. They aren't really setting out to spend that kind of money.. they just take the shortest path.


Kinda like college admissions....to soon?
 

eliza61nyc

Well-Known Member
And this ties back to the image and brand Disney has built for generations now... that a Disney vacation is the "must do" thing that every parent should treat their child to. This image and legend fuels much of Disney's business.. and why people have advocated for a long time that damage to that image will have impacts that take a long time to play out. When this generation does not have the same image of Disney that their parents did... when it's time to take their kids somewhere.. will they continue to pay the Disney premium their parents were willing to do?

That's why these things aren't put to bed with simple YoY comparisons. Disney built this image and reputation over generations... it takes a lot to knock that out for people.



Another important consumer factor to remember is the idea of "what they know" and familiarity. People are resistant to try new things... the most popular place in town isn't necessarily the best.. it may just be the most comfortable for people.

That plays out in vacation choices too... you'll probably find way more people repeat vacation destinations than those who want something new every time. It takes a big hit for those people or some other change to get them to venture out and give up their "comfort food".

An easy way to think about it is... imagine if there was no history for Disney.. and this was a brand new product. What would the reactions be like then? The same? Different?


Interesting!! that is interesting. I wonder though would it make folks have to compare it to what's available now in the real world. What I mean is one of the things folks here do is compare it to "the way it use to be". for example remember the out cry over soda prices. Now at most destinations like cruises and all inclusives, soda prices are already 5 bucks and water is at 4 bucks a bottle. so now what would our comparison be, would we still be as outraged.

so if there is no back history, would we still be able to chime about how "disney use to be for the middle class". by the same token could we complain about the lack of originality?

Very interesting question.
 

Tom P.

Well-Known Member
I am not wrong. Both my sisters were teachers in NJ and started in the late 1970s. The other interesting fact that most people no longer think about is that it was in the 1970s that society changed and 2 income families became the norm. The median family income in 1971 was $9,030. The median family income in 2017 was $61,372. That is an increase of 680%. Do you really believe a family of 4 making $9,030 could have afforded a vacation to WDW? Remember clothes cost a much larger percentage of ones income because clothing used to be made in the USA and not China. Food was a higher percentage of income. But taxes were a smaller percentage.
Uhm... no it's not.

You have, once again, totally ignored inflation. An income of $9,030 in 1971 would be equal to an income of $55,562 in 2017 dollars. So, adjusted for inflation, an income of $61,372 is only about a 10% increase, not 680%.
 

seascape

Well-Known Member
Uhm... no it's not.

You have, once again, totally ignored inflation. An income of $9,030 in 1971 would be equal to an income of $55,562 in 2017 dollars. So, adjusted for inflation, an income of $61,372 is only about a 10% increase, not 680%.
No, it's you that missed my point. I was not talking about inflation, I was talking about median family income. You also prove my point that the average family in 1971 was poorer than they are today and that they could not have afforded a WDW vacation.

You agree the median family income is 10% higher in real terms in 2017 than it was in 1971. Additionally the average family size of all households was 3.11 and in 2017 it was 2.6. That is a decrease of 16.4%. Therefore in real terms with everything else being equal a family today could pay 28% more in constant dollars and it would be the same percentage of income. Using your inflation percentage of 615.3% the equivalent percentage adjusted for increased income and decreased family size would mean as long as the average vacation cost less than an increase of 787.6%, todays vacation would be cheaper.
 

flynnibus

Premium Member
No, it's you that missed my point. I was not talking about inflation, I was talking about median family income.

But you can't make comparisons without adjusting BOTH sides of your equation. You're comparing medians over time, without giving Disney prices the same adjustments of time.


You also prove my point that the average family in 1971 was poorer than they are today and that they could not have afforded a WDW vacation.

Well.. too bad the actual history books account for the the millions of people who did go there.. and the city that was built because of it... and they say something counter to your postulate. And your whole exercise is bunk because you're simply trying to compare buying power extrapolated by inflation.. and completely ignoring that Disney prices (especially in the last decade) have almost nothing to do with inflation or relative buying power. You're comparing apples and pineapples.
 

flynnibus

Premium Member
maybe I should dig out some of the birnbaum books from the early 80s... that would put some context to things.

Disney was always a premium experience - that doesn't mean only the 'rich' went.
 

eliza61nyc

Well-Known Member
...and the even greater number of millions who go today.

and I think that's the nail in the coffin. lol no matter how they paid or whether or not the price rises have outpaced the rise in household income (which is an absolutely ridiculous argument). we/they go? why? what baffles me is that most folks here will go again.
 
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seascape

Well-Known Member
I just priced a package deal for Sunday September 20 to Friday Septenber 25 including 4 day ticket package and it was just under $4,000.00. The which same percentage of the median income family from 1971 would be $507.87. This is priced flying from Newark NJ flying to MCO. Staying in an AOA Lion King Family Suite. For 2 adults and an 11 year old.

So how does this compare to 1971. Tickets for 11 rides and admission were 9.75 in 1971. Multiply that by 3 and its 29.25 per day for 4 days would be 118.00. Add in 5 nights at a WDW hotel 5 days at lowest cost 28 would be 140. So far we are up to 258 but we still have to add airfare, cost of shuttle to and from WDW or a rental car. Now does anyone know what it cost to fly in 1971? I also did not add the hotel tax which is included in the $4,000, nor adjust for family size, which would add another $39.00 for one more person.
 

hopemax

Well-Known Member
I am not wrong. Both my sisters were teachers in NJ and started in the late 1970s. The other interesting fact that most people no longer think about is that it was in the 1970s that society changed and 2 income families became the norm. The median family income in 1971 was $9,030. The median family income in 2017 was $61,372. That is an increase of 680%. Do you really believe a family of 4 making $9,030 could have afforded a vacation to WDW? Remember clothes cost a much larger percentage of ones income because clothing used to be made in the USA and not China. Food was a higher percentage of income. But taxes were a smaller percentage.

In 1971 an 11-adventure ticket book cost 5.75 Adult, 5.25 Junior, 4.75 child. The lowest rate at the Contemporary or Polynesian was $28 a night. Parking was 50 cents. So a 2-day, 2 night stay for 2 adults, a junior, and a child, at those resorts would be

(28+5.75+5.75+5.25+4.75+.5) * 2 = $50 x 2 = $100. Using your number of $9030 as median income. $100 for a 2-day/2 night visit would be 1.11% of yearly income.

So also using your median income of $61,372 and 1.11% of yearly income in 2017 = $679.65

Current Prices: Garden view room during Value season - $465 per night = 930
Two 2 day Adult tickets value day: $266 x 2 = $532
Two 2 day Child tickets: $216 x 2 = $432

Total: $1894

$680 vs $1894?

My answer to your question is yes. In 1971, they may have still considered it a splurge, or expensive. But something that a family of theirs could conceivably save for with a little effort.

EDIT: I see we have different prices for the ticket books. I am checking to possibly rerun.

2nd edit: 2nd source matches my numbers: http://allears.net/walt-disney-world/wdw-planning/1970s-walt-disney-world-tickets/
 

dennis-in-ct

Well-Known Member
In 1971 an 11-adventure ticket book cost 5.75 Adult, 5.25 Junior, 4.75 child. The lowest rate at the Contemporary or Polynesian was $28 a night. Parking was 50 cents. So a 2-day, 2 night stay for 2 adults, a junior, and a child, at those resorts would be

(28+5.75+5.75+5.25+4.75+.5) * 2 = $50 x 2 = $100. Using your number of $9030 as median income. $100 for a 2-day/2 night visit would be 1.11% of yearly income.

So also using your median income of $61,372 and 1.11% of yearly income in 2017 = $679.65

Current Prices: Garden view room during Value season - $465 per night = 930
Two 2 day Adult tickets value day: $266 x 2 = $532
Two 2 day Child tickets: $216 x 2 = $432

Total: $1894

$680 vs $1894?

My answer to your question is yes. In 1971, they may have still considered it a splurge, or expensive. But something that a family of theirs could conceivably save for with a little effort.

EDIT: I see we have different prices for the ticket books. I am checking to possibly rerun.

2nd edit: 2nd source matches my numbers: http://allears.net/walt-disney-world/wdw-planning/1970s-walt-disney-world-tickets/

Good post.
I am looking at my old 1997 tickets - 40 bucks for a one-day ticket and 150 for a 4-day park hopper. Aaahhhh ... good times :)

357098
 

MrPromey

Well-Known Member
You are missing the point. If Disney didn't raise their prices the parks would be gridlocked. If you want to limit the ticket price increase to once every 2 years, I say fine. Raise them to $200 today for peak, $175 for mid and $150 for value. Change the annual pass to between $600 and $1200 depending on Blackouts. They will still offer packages for hotel and park tickets for less. It's just like Colleges. There are sticker prices and actual prices. The only people who pay Disney sticker prices are those who stay offsite. People just like to complain.

Maybe if Disney didn't raise their prices and continued to market the parks like they do, you'd be right but they still have a marketing team working overtime to pack those parks. Remember, this is the company that pulled an Epcot redesign announcement out of their butts that will be completed at some unknown time in the future so Universal wouldn't get the complete spotlight on announcing a major new attraction opening this summer.

They're a business. They have a right to make money any legal way they can. Economics. Supply and demand - yada, yada, yada but this story about how they're trying to level or reduce crowds with price hikes while they continue to plug to get more and more people to come is getting old. There are a plethora of things they could start doing or stop doing that would help this situation if they saw it as a genuine issue for them. They don't becasue they don't but being able to collect more money while providing lip service to the problem feels very convenient.

I can't speak for others but it's the buyer-be-ware approach that the company seems to take with the Orlando property these days that frustrates me most, I think. While they are now starting to add new attractions, some of which are great, some of which I'm sure will be great and some of which hardly deserved the marketing push they put behind them (Toy Story Land) It seems unlikely that they will add capacity with these at the rate needed to reduce congestion and in fact, will probably just be increasing it.

I don't like price increases more than anyone else but the higher prices don't make it so I can't go, they just, in combination with crowding and things like finding the express monorail shut down for a period of hours mid-day and at night before and during park closing, make me question how much I still want to go.
 
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MrPromey

Well-Known Member
IMO, the experience should rise with the cost.

If I'm paying more, which I am (everyone is), it should be all hands on deck at all times. I don't want to see rides loading one side only in the morning. I've personally witnessed it at BTMRR and Speedway. Each with a 30 min wait around 9:30 AM. I've seen other accounts of it as well. Don't charge more and then cut costs. That's what gets me..

Exactly - if you're going to charge and claim a premium experience, offer a premium experience. Having awesome new lower capacity attractions that can't handle guest volume is not a premium experience unless you're able to get fastpass for them.

Wonder what tier the Rat and Guardians rides will be in when they open - not the same one as the only other attractions that really need fastpasses at Epcot, I'm sure.
 

seascape

Well-Known Member
In 1971 an 11-adventure ticket book cost 5.75 Adult, 5.25 Junior, 4.75 child. The lowest rate at the Contemporary or Polynesian was $28 a night. Parking was 50 cents. So a 2-day, 2 night stay for 2 adults, a junior, and a child, at those resorts would be

(28+5.75+5.75+5.25+4.75+.5) * 2 = $50 x 2 = $100. Using your number of $9030 as median income. $100 for a 2-day/2 night visit would be 1.11% of yearly income.

So also using your median income of $61,372 and 1.11% of yearly income in 2017 = $679.65

Current Prices: Garden view room during Value season - $465 per night = 930
Two 2 day Adult tickets value day: $266 x 2 = $532
Two 2 day Child tickets: $216 x 2 = $432

Total: $1894

$680 vs $1894?

My answer to your question is yes. In 1971, they may have still considered it a splurge, or expensive. But something that a family of theirs could conceivably save for with a little effort.

EDIT: I see we have different prices for the ticket books. I am checking to possibly rerun.

2nd edit: 2nd source matches my numbers: http://allears.net/walt-disney-world/wdw-planning/1970s-walt-disney-world-tickets/
You still left out airfare. And you should use 4 days at WDW not 2. Remember people price all costs of vacations and not just part. Therefore, any vacation resort will raise their price if travel costs go down and lower them if they go up. Anyway, stop looking at individual components and look at the packages. It's just the same as Colleges, don't look at sticker price look at your real cost.
 

hopemax

Well-Known Member
You still left out airfare. And you should use 4 days at WDW not 2. Remember people price all costs of vacations and not just part. Therefore, any vacation resort will raise their price if travel costs go down and lower them if they go up. Anyway, stop looking at individual components and look at the packages. It's just the same as Colleges, don't look at sticker price look at your real cost.

Why would I do that? The question on the table is the affordability of a WDW vacation to a 1971 family. You took great pains to point out differences between family size and median income and that we need to consider the 1971 aspects of that. Why would I then ignore the 1971 travel patterns. People did not travel by air in 1971, they did not stay 4 days at WDW, and they did not buy vacation packages.
 

DisneyJoe

Well-Known Member
I just priced a package deal for Sunday September 20 to Friday Septenber 25 including 4 day ticket package and it was just under $4,000.00. The which same percentage of the median income family from 1971 would be $507.87. This is priced flying from Newark NJ flying to MCO. Staying in an AOA Lion King Family Suite. For 2 adults and an 11 year old.

So how does this compare to 1971. Tickets for 11 rides and admission were 9.75 in 1971. Multiply that by 3 and its 29.25 per day for 4 days would be 118.00. Add in 5 nights at a WDW hotel 5 days at lowest cost 28 would be 140. So far we are up to 258 but we still have to add airfare, cost of shuttle to and from WDW or a rental car. Now does anyone know what it cost to fly in 1971? I also did not add the hotel tax which is included in the $4,000, nor adjust for family size, which would add another $39.00 for one more person.
That is a premium priced room, as I am sure you know, a double-sized room with a kitchenette.
 

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