What are you thinking? An open letter to Bob Iger

What are you thinking? An open letter to Bob Iger

by Dad




I've been watching the news out of Disney over the last couple of weeks. Today was the last straw. What's going on? This is getting out of hand.

Uncle Walt is probably rolling over in his grave. In fact, he's probably turned into a tornado down there (but Uncle Roy has a big smile on his face).

Hey Dad, whatchoutalkinbout?

Warning, Dad's about to go on a Rant and it might get a little messy!

In fact, I think I'll just send a message directly to Bob Iger. I've got some things I think he needs to hear.

Hey Bob,

What are you thinking?

This morning, you all leaked information about the new Disney Early Morning Magic - Fantasyland. You know the new program where you'll let guest pay $69 to ride THREE rides in Fantasyland and get some pastries and juice. How nice of you.

This is just a couple of days after you announced Magic Kingdom After Hours. That one is even more outrageous. $149 PER PERSON for just 3 hours in the Magic Kingdom. Shoot, the highest price for a whole day ticket on Christmas Day is only $124.

So what's going on? Why the sudden need to create outrageously priced "special events" that will only be available to a "select" few?

I can just imagine the corporate drivel you'd probably spout about how people want more hours in the Magic Kingdom with smaller crowds. That's totally true. (By the way, I can tell you how to make this happen, call me.) You're probably saying this is the best way we've found to accommodate that.

Let's talk about that.

I'm sure you and your bean counters are saying, "we have plenty of people that would pay a lot of money for some extra time in the parks".

My answer would be yes, yes, you sure do. Plenty of people like those New York Housewife's that have totally destroyed YOUR great relationship with Special Needs guests! Those people? People like the 1% that everyone hates? Those people? People that will shell out $150 PER PERSON to spend 3 hours in the Magic Kingdom so they don't have to rub elbows with the "commoners". Those People?

Let me give you a big warning Bob. You are starting to get the reputation that you would rather have "Those People" than the rest of us working stiffs.

Oh, let's not forget, all of these new money grabbing programs come on top of the 5th year in a row you've raised prices 6% or so when the economy had a growth rate of 1% or less. So the average Disney guest is now paying around 20% more in real dollars for their Disney vacations than they were just 5 years ago. That's just crazy.

And there are rumors that this is just the beginning of the price increases. You have one planned for the resorts this summer and probably another big one first thing in 2017.


OK, Bob, I truly want to help so let's have a discussion about what is so special about Disney to a lot of us.

Let's talk a little bit about the Disney brand. One of the things that "Disney the company" has always been known for is being a company that made dreams come true for everyone. We all loved it because we could relate to the heroes who were common people. Snow White and the Dwarfs, Cinderella, Aladdin, and even Mickey himself were characters of the people.

When royalty was portrayed only the humble royals were celebrated. Those that were haughty and money grabbing usually came to a very inglorious end.

Lately, I think Disney has lost its way. It pains me to say it. It looks to a lot of us out here in Realsville is that "Disney, the brand", has become haughty and money grabbing. Some of us are getting fearful that an inglorious end is in sight.

Don't believe me? Let's just look at what you've built over the last few years. Let's start with the Bungalows at the Polynesian Village Resort. I can tell you I salivated over those while they were being built. I've told my wife for years that when the DVC came to the Polynesian we were buying DVC points.

Then I heard about the point requirements for the Bungalows. CRAZY TALK! To buy enough points for just one week a year in a Bungalow during the lowest priced part of the year, would cost more than I made in a year as an AIR TRAFFIC CONTROLLER. That's not a low paying job.

There is no way on this earth that I will ever be able to afford even a night in a Bungalow. Even if I rented points it would be stupid for me to spend that much money for just one night in a HOTEL ROOM, I don't care what the view is.

Oh, and let's not forget about that shrine you've built to Those People! between the Wilderness Lodge and the Port Orleans. You know what I'm talking about. The Four Seasons Hotel and Golden Oaks. What does one of those houses cost? At least $1 Million Dollars.

Even the most recent "Value" Resort is a complete joke. There is no "Value" in something that starts at over $300 per night. Shoot, a Family Suite at the Art of Animation is more expensive than any of the Moderates. That's not "Value."

This really isn't helping Disney's image, Bob. If you just look at all the articles that are coming out about Disney including one from Frommers, of all people about how Disney is now considered a company of the 1%.

A lot of us "normal" people are starting to grumble. I hear it all the time on my website and social media. More and more people are talking about abandoning Disney and moving on to other more reasonably priced vacation options.

Yes, I know that you are having record attendance. I know that revenues are through the roof. I know that every price increase is met with howls, but the bottom line keeps moving up, but at what cost?

Is having a high stock price more important than being the company of the little guy (like Walt)? Is setting income records more important than making Dreams Come True for those not in the 1%?

Remember, Bob. Like a lot of the characters in your movies, pride goeth before a fall.

The bottom line is this wasn't Walt's way. Walt was all about creating magic for us "common" folks. When Walt died it cost less than $4 to get into the Magic Kingdom. I don't think he would be very proud of the way the company is headed today.

One of your biggest fans,
Carl (Dad) Trent

Comments for What are you thinking? An open letter to Bob Iger

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Aug 15, 2016
Sad, but true
by: LuvinLife

I whole heartedly agree with your letter. We took our first Disney world in January, 2015 and we all absolutely loved it and can't wait to go back. Unfortunately, I am planning our next trip for November, 2017 and we are quickly coming to the realization our Disney trip may no longer be something we can afford nor want to spend that much money on a trip to join crowds so we are now looking at spending 2 weeks in Hawaii for significantly less than our Disney vacation was pricing out at. I am sad another Disney World vacation may not happen for our family, but my money has more value to me than what Disney is offering in return. Thanks for speaking out against what so many families are discovering.

Apr 29, 2016
DVC owner fed up!
by: Anonymous

I am a DVC owner as well. We have gone to Disney, since it opened, and for the last 13 years, have taken our kids, and grandkids. We will no longer buy Annual Pass, or go in the Parks and spend money. Our breakfast will be in the room, with food from the local grocery store. We plan to eat at City walk, for the rest of the meals. Disney, with closing so much and promising much, and delivering so litte. The delay, after delay is getting on my last nerve. Seeing the parks declining, and with the bathrooms being horrible at best is dangerous, just to enter. We are going to use the DVC to be our base of vacation, and visit other things in the Orlando area. In less than 5 years, we will be selling our DVC and will never return. We have two grandsons that want to do UNI, and we plan to go there. More for boy's to do. Avatar doesn't interest any of our family.

Apr 28, 2016
Don't be fooled
by: Anonymous

What most of you don't realize is the Disney hands out a lot of freebies and holds special events for mommy and daddy bloggers like "dad". He encourages people to do things that Disney doesn't appreciate and they cut him off. Now he is bitter like a spoiled brat. And for those who say that they won't be going back...Great! Disney accomplished what they set out to do.

Dad Answers

Full Disclosure: I did get one set of tickets (2) from Disney but other than that I've never been "invited" or gotten anything from Disney. Not even an upgrade to a hotel reservation. Poor, poor pitiful Dad.

Apr 06, 2016
by: Marionla

Disney has never been the same since Michael Eisner left. He made Disney better along with keeping more to Walt's plan.

Apr 02, 2016
Look at it as a good thing
by: Anonymous

So I do agree that the price increases & cost of the family suites are a bit high. Maybe it's a good thing for the average person. If the people who don't want to be in crowded parks or hotels pay extra to stay somewhere else and go at different times than the middle class then it's a good thing. We don't have to listen to their whining about lines or have larger crowds. We can surround ourselves with respectful families and have a good time instead of people who feel entitled to everything.

Apr 01, 2016
Open letter
by: John

We go to Disney every other year, but now we are not planning on going until 2018. It is too expensive, we go with 10 people. Plus everything is closed at Hollywood Studios now.

Our last trip was this past November and it was the most disappointing trip I have ever had. Disney Transportation was terrible, service at some of the best restaurants was terrible and yet the prices continue to climb. We will vote with our wallets and cut back on the number of trips.

This is very disappointing to us since we now have a grandchild that we want to introduce to the MAGIC of DISNEY.

Apr 01, 2016
by: Heather

Disney is well on it's way to pricing it's way out of reach for the average guest. My husband and I work full-time and make a decent living. I am at the point where we only go if and when they have free dining. The only real splurge while there is MNNSHP. We stay in a moderate resort due to bed size, buy base tickets and limit souvenir purschases. Even with all of that it's still a stretch. I have many friends who marvel that we can afford to go every year. I am afraid that my trips will come to an end of this continues. I loved the letter. You have very valid points. Keep up the good work!

Apr 01, 2016
It is a Free Market
by: Anonymous

This is still a modestly free market county and Disney is free to charge whatever price they want. Supply and demand will determine when the price is too high. Apparently from all the complaints about crowded parks, the prices are not too high yet. All the people who complain about high ticket prices should consider this, if Disney did as you wished and lowered ticket prices 10%, 20%, 30%, imagine what it would do to the crowd levels. Sure you would be paying less but all you would be able to do is stumble around should-to-shoulder with thousands of other guests and stand in line for 2 hrs waiting for each 3 minute ride. I wish they would raise the prices higher and make the crowds smaller. Disney is a vacation, not a right. If everything is a right now, I want a brand new top-notch Mercedes but I shouldn't have to pay more than $19,000 for it because it isn't fair.

Apr 01, 2016
A Suggestion
by: Anonymous

I think your letter was spot on. How about creating an online petition that we "common" folk could sign in support? I'd love to see what kind of numbers would be generated by such a document.

Mar 30, 2016
I Agree
by: Anonymous

Wow. You hit the nail on the head. We have been visiting the parks every year since 1993 and after our September 2015 vacation, we decided "no more."The recent price gouges just cemented our decision.

For the past ten years, we have noticed the prices spike and the customer service decline. It seems like they were squeezing everything out of every dime.

The hotels are no longer worth the money. Housekeeping has certainly declined. It takes a miracle to get towels and sometimes the towels you receive are so old that they are thin and have strings hanging. The public spaces are not kept as clean and maintenance is poor.

The new work done at the parks is okay, but not really "great." It seems like there is no real planning when it comes to expanding the parks and the rides. I don't think that there is a mission statement any more. The "New Fantasyland" is okay, but does not take my breath away. Be Our Guest is the only bright star. The Seven Dwarfs Mine Train is nice, but too, too short.

A lot of people, me included, do not like the new direction of the studios. It just sees whatever idea is thrown out for park expansion is done. I think Avatar Land at the Animal Kingdom is really lame. The movie had a short popular spurt, but is now passe.

I could really go on all day. Basically, Disney World is no longer a quality product. The new rides and renovations that are being done are not really great. Rides need to follow a mission plan for the park and each section in the park. Rides also need to vary in length. The new rides are too short and affects the traffic patterns in the parks. Mostly, quality customer service is gone along with park cleanliness.

We will spend our vacation dollars elsewhere, unless we hear of a turnaround. Iger the Horrible, go ahead and over milk the cash cow. The effects of your greed probably will not be felt until after you retire from Disney. So, go ahead, and alienate your customer base.

Mar 29, 2016
Would you like some cheese with that wine?
by: Anonymous

Anyone who has been to the parks during peak season knows how crowded it is. Christmas day, good luck getting on more than 4 or 5 rides, and that's including the three fast passes you get for free. It's called supply and demand, you should read about it sometime. Also, whiners like you write "Disney Blogs" encouraging guests to complain to get free stuff, so now that cost gets passed on to everyone else. Everyone also whined about how crowded it is during peak season, and the only way to quell the crowds is to charge more. As someone who knows Disney inside and out, I can tell you that during peak season, when everything is priced at its highest, the 1% stays far away from the parks, because they are smarter than that. The people that come at Easter, Christmas and summer peak are the ones who's kids aren't smart enough to be taken out of school to come during the off peak season, so they have to come during spring break, summer and Christmas. I know this, because that's when the tips for the servers are the worst, 5-10% if you're lucky enough not to get stiffed (it's not the servers fault). One more reason Disney has to jack up prices for day guests is because of all the great deals they offer on travel packages. They bundle your room, tickets and meals for a relatively reasonable price. And let's not forget that Disney offers their table service dining plan for free when you book your package during off peak seasons. They give away the dining plan at least three times a year. All I have left to say is that, if you're a whiner like the writer of this blog, please take your family on vacation somewhere else, because you'll just end up ruining the magic for your kids by being a whiny baby the whole trip.

Mar 28, 2016
2011 and 2015 Comparison ( Trips to WDW )
by: Anonymous

Have to say upfront that our family has made only two visits to WDW and both in the 21st century, and both felt out of our usual comfort zone for budget, but as far as overall "Value" it seems to be harder to judge as so many factors involved.

Admittedly our first trips ' Pros were : 1 ) First Trip ever for myself and our kids. Husband had been during the 70s. 2 ) We worked with a AAA agent who steered us to a VALUE RESORT SUITE at ALL STAR MUSIC
saving us some $ over some other choice for Family of five total. 3 ) Skipped most of the usual extras like Table Dining -stuck with Quick service meals and ate breakfast in room. 4 ) Old Fast Pass System was a Bonus - not something you counted on or had to plan too far ahead for - just made the first thing after entering park.

The CONS : The only REAL cons for our first trip was getting talked into the Park Hopper Package which we NEVER had TIME to USE the whole week we were there. Our kids were still not used to walking that much so one park a day was plenty and still is !

Fast Forward to 2015 Trip. Pro : 1 )_We chose to stay at ASM Family Suite again and got a better rate then we had in 2011. ( Did not use Travel Agent this time but booked online directly with WDW site ourselves. ) Also kept with Quick Service for most meals with Breakfast using non perishables packed from home. ( used Snack points for Milk and muffins -Refillable mug for coffee / Tea. )

2 ) Skipped park hopper for reasons above. Saved big money there.)

3 ) Kids were older and able to spend longer time in parks thus getting more value from day ticket.

Now for the 2015 CONS :

1 ) More stress upfront in planning - staying up til after midnight on 59th day before trip to get all our FP Plus selections and any Special Dining above our Quick Svc meals.

2 ) Food Court at resort was just REMODELED with Brand New Booths and Paint on the walls but The quality of food had actually gone DOWN!

3 ) Buses to Downtown Disney were always the craziest going back to resort but this trip was made worse as they seemed to have a drivers schedule mix up the day we needed to get back to our resort and catch the airport shuttle. Coincidence maybe but did not add value to an already compromised system. Can see where crowds are always going to be an issue and probably the worst at Downtown Disney since there is no PARK TICKET controlling the number of vacationers.

We are a one income family who went through a salary freeze in between our two WDW trips. Spent less on this trip due to careful planning but still not sure if another trip will be happening anytime soon even for just the two of us.

Mar 28, 2016
Best Interest vs Best Practice
by: Anonymous

Various arguments have been made concerning what Disney charges for whatever goods or services. The bottom line is supply and demand and the new pricing plan is a perfect example of that.

Disney, like any other company, can only charge what the market will bear. The fact is, the parks fill up to capacity. As long as this continues Disney has no reason at all to lower prices. I may not like it, but it's not up to me.

Yes, it's true that when the park first opened in 1971 an adult ticket was $3.50, junior (12-17) was $2.50, and child (3-11) was $1.00. The tickets were a separate price then as well at adult for $4.50, junior (12-17) for $4.00, and child (3-11) for $3.50. Each book contained 1 A, 1 B, 1 C, 2 D, 2 E tickets.

I was 8-years-old in 1971 and my parents took me from New York to Florida so that I could visit this brand new Disney park. That's $8 for admission and another $12.50 for one set of ticket books . . . $20.50 total in 1971. In today's dollars that's $121.83 for a family of three according to DollarTimes.com. Also, this doesn't take into account the purchase of new ticket books, food, drinks, souvenirs, etc.

Based on this data, the idea that Disney is charging too much is sound. However, it does not take into account the cost involved with maintaining multiple parks, thousands of employees, a sophisticated transportation system, etc. Everything goes back to supply and demand. When park attendance goes down, discounts will go up.

Mar 28, 2016
Not new news
by: Anonymous

Oh and if you were really curious you should check out all the state and local.. Laws, codes, and what not that have been changed, altered, and/or all together ignored to accomidate the company.
They, Disney, are what locals (in central Florida) call the magic mafia.

Mar 28, 2016
Not new news
by: Anonymous

The "corporate Disney" is not new news to those of us who grew up and work(ed) in and around it... Our fathers and/or Mothers careers where there. Most of our first jobs where at Disney. We worked all our high school vacations there as "seasonal" cast members. We were proud to be a part of the "magic".... Not so much now. If you happen to find anyone with 30 straight years still with the company it's probably because the benifits were, I stress WERE, the best around and they are just holding on until retirement. It is sad.
Disney is NOT the magical place most think (unless your amazed by your money magically disappearing fast while your there).

There is SO much more That could be told by the, as we call it, "old Disney" people. But you must know they (Walt Disney company) does not care. They are making there BILLIONS... They don't care.

Oh, if you checked I would bet that at least 20-30% of FULL TIME cast members are either below poverty level and/or get government assistance of some sort. You should check that out.. The Orlando sentinel did some 20 plus years ago and published it (I do not remember the details) which until that
moment was the newspaper of choice for Disney... That changed the NEXT day. Check that out... So no this is not new news.

Mar 28, 2016
by: Anonymous

I have thought for a while now that Disney was headed in the wrong direction. It would seem that the people that are making the decisions in the company now, are not concerned with family values, or with making the parks a customer service friendly environment.

Things have changed a lot in the last few years. My family tries to go to Disney every other year, because that is all we can afford to do. They have raised the price so high though, that even every other year might be out of reach for us. The last time we were there, they told us that we had to stay in TWO value resort rooms, because we have three kids.

It was a lot more money than we thought it was going to be. There is no value at all when you have to pay for two rooms, and the Family suites are even more expensive than that. They tell you that it is a fire hazard to have one more little ten year old stay in the room with you. I am so very tired of hearing that line! And I am really concerned about the direction of some of the things coming into the parks, and movies and tv shows being made under the Disney name, as well. Avatar in the Animal Kingdom......yuck!

Some of the recent headlines involving the Disney Co are seriously disturbing! It has become a company that I can't trust around my children. It used to be all about children, and something you could rely upon, for the most part, to be safe. It isn't anymore!

Mar 28, 2016
Silver Dollar City in Branson
by: Anonymous

Disney is expensive, crowded, and not always happy? Not news.

If you want to visit a theme park with happy employees, great service, great rides, a natural scenery, and decent prices? Silver Dollar City in Branson is your best bet.

Disney could learn a thing or two from their staff and management, as far as NON-UNION, NON-INGRATE customer service goes.

Also hear good things about Dollywood (same ownership) though never been there - yet.

And the Six Flags parks are relatively cheap for season passes, and have improved vastly in the last few years, in every respect.

You are not limited. Take your ears off every now and then and try something new - and maybe better.

Mar 28, 2016
So disappointed .
by: joan bednash

I pay the way for my family of 12 every year and this year I said has to be the last.I put away my entire
ss check so my grandchildren can have what MY children had when they were growing up. I am so sad but this is a fact.

Mar 28, 2016
Greedy, Greedy, Greedy
by: Anonymous

I agree completely with the letter writer. As a former disney slave, I'm appalled at how the 99% who can't afford the place still go and rack up huge sums of debt on their credit cards. Five years ago, Disne used to say the average family of 4 would spend $10,000 a week at there money pit. Now it's even more.

I would love to see them double or triple the prices. Then when people quit going into the parks, and they had to close down, someone could open the parks as a "See the old days" type park.

Working for disney is slave labor. Low salaries, lousy hours (you work a day, then a night, then a day, then a night etc., etc. You never know what day it is or what time it is.disney guests are treated great. disney employees are the scum of the earth. I know. I was one of them for four years.

Have you noticed all of the light bulbs that are burned out and not replaced, the cigarettes on the pavement, the trash laying around, and on and on. Cut the services, raise the ticket prices, and Bob Iger just rakes in the dough. He, and the stock holders.

I can't wait to see the disney parks die, because they are so expensive.

Mar 28, 2016
I agree but Disagree
by: Anonymous

I travel from Wisconsin and am lucky enough to have a Premier Passport...for all US parks east and west. I am able to make it to Disney a few times a year but there are times that the place is so packed that you can hardly move as was my experience just over a year ago on the least busy week on Disneys calendar. We were "stuck" for nearly an hour because someone wanted a specific for a parade and there wasn't any parade places so they made one.

So on the 52 least busy week of the year Disney came to a standstill for over an hour for thousands (yes, thousands) of guests due to over crowding. Are the prices high? Yes. But something has to be done to control the crowds. Disney has tried closing that parks at a capacity level but people cried foul when they paid and couldn't get in. Disney tried Fastpass+ for reserving things like parades and fireworks and people cried foul that there aren't enough "reserved places" for everyone. Disney raises prices and people cry foul because it's now more expensive and not everyone can go.

Disney does have shareholders that they are responsible to. Without their money coming in they can't invest in expanding the parks (Star Wars, Toy Story Land), new technology to make lines shorter (Fastpass) or keep up with the innovation that will keep that park alive and "never complete" as Walt put it. Remember, Disney is so much more that just a money printing machine. It is a business and must be treated as one. Would Walt be upset...perhaps. But this has grown in to something that he would have never though possible.

Mar 28, 2016
Excellent letter
by: Alissa

Your letter is 100% on point. People are just going to have to adjust how they take their Disney trips. Stay off property for a fraction of the price. Many hotels offer buses to the parks if you don't want to rent a car. If you really love Disney but can't afford it, there are ways you can still do it affordably. Staying off property is the #1 way to still get in that Disney trip you love.

Mar 28, 2016
WE can get through to Disney
by: Anonymous

Want Disney to stop saying we will stay open longer and open earlier for just the few who can and will pay??? Then STOP PAYING!!! Don't buy into the Holiday Party events that ends up having other special events added into it that cost even more!!

Stop feeding the beast called Disney and put it on a diet! They will get the idea and come back.

Mar 27, 2016
Too much change!
by: Anonymous

As I went through my photos today, many Disney pictures came up. It saddens me that this winter was the last time Disney will have the Osborne Family Lights. It was so beautiful and special. Then I got to thinking about all the recent changes that Disney has made .. Back lot Tour at Hollywood studios, Art of Animation drawing lessons, removal of mickeys big hat (where is it now??), the famous bakery on Main Street USA in MK, ride in Norway at Epcot center, not to mention the ridiculous new annual passes. Why do we need photo passes??

It's just another way for Disney to make more money off the people who support them. Don't get me wrong... All change isn't bad but it's a lot of changes in a very short period of time. It is almost like Disney has all new management making all these new decisions. Why??? I would like to see Disney start paying their employees what they are worth along with a new campaign to reduce prices for the American people. I honestly think Walt would see it that way.

Mar 27, 2016
Disney used to take care of employees
by: Anonymous

It was my dream growing up to work at Disney. I was fortunate enough to do the College Program a number of years back. I did everything I could to set myself up for a job with Disney in my field after I graduated.

I walked into being a cast member with high hopes and dreams. I wanted to make Disney magical for families the way Disney was magical for mine when my family was going through a rough time when I was growing up. My house had been destroyed in a flood when I was under the age of 10, my parents skimped and saved to take us on vacation to Disney so we didn't have to deal with the devastation of losing our home for a few days. As a 8 year old, getting to see Tinkerbell and the Princesses really lifted my spirits during a horrible time. I wanted to work there ever since that vacation.

What happened when I was a cast member was I walked into a hostile workplace. Security actually had to be called in a few times from people getting into fights in the break room. Management didn't really care about its workers, very little outside of the college program was done to develop cast members careers. But I understand where a lot of tension came from: the workers work extremely hard for very little pay. Most of my coworkers lived in impoverished situations. I started giving another coworker rides home after I found out that she was a single mom that was working 60 hour weeks to support her kids and had to deal with a 2 hour bus ride with 3 changes because she couldn't afford a car or insurance.

Over the coarse of my college program, I began to give up on my dream. I just wanted to make someone happy, especially if they were going through something tough in their life. I finally was told that Disney would have no interest in hiring me full time in my field outside of their internships and after I got 5-10 years experience in another company. I ended up going to another company and am now very fortunate to have a great career. I am thankful for the experience I got from Disney, it helped my resume a lot.

When I was at Disney, I befriended a number of people who had worked there for 20 plus years. all of these people, managers, entertainers, professionals said the same thing. Disney used to be a company that took care of its employees and that they missed the old company. Not the Eisner's company, I've just heard absolute horror stories about what a terrible manager he was. But before then, back when the Disney family defined what leadership in the company meant. I really wish I could work for that company, back when people were a priority.

Mar 27, 2016
Get with reality
by: Anonymous

Dude Disneyland holds like 50,000 people. When it gets to that point they are going to have to look at closing the park regardless of who is there. Now think about this, 20 million people live in just the Los Angeles area.

Now think about this, Disney World moreso than any other place in the world draws a world-wide crowd. Now apply the same principal.

Sucks for you that you're getting priced out but seriously...it's Bob Igers job to make money not to make sure you can afford to visit.

Mar 27, 2016
Resort Fee
by: Brian

And don't forget to add that Disney is asking how people would respond to a $15 a night resort fee as well. You know, for free wifi, parking, magic bands and fastpasses. Oh. The things that are already "free" or built into the price of the ticket.

Mar 27, 2016
Corporate Greed
by: Anonymous

It is obvious that Disney is getting greedier each day. They won't change until the cash stops flowing. Disney or not, the simple thing to do if you are not satisfied with a business, stop giving them your money. That's the beauty about our country!

Also the problems only start at what your talking about. Working there is a whole big topic as well. Almost all the non-managerial cast you see are getting paid very little in comparison to cost of living in central florida. I think most cast members are getting hired in at around 9 to 10 dollars an hour. But full time is only promised 32 hours a week. Try finding a half way decent place to live by yourself on even a 40 hour week. It is nearly impossible for 1 person if it is possible at all.

Also there are some good managers in WDW, alot of them could care less about you, same goes with the company in general. They move managers around all the time. This is probably so they don't have time to settle in and spend the companies money to make changes in the area they are working in. There is a ridiculous amount of turnover for employees and it is obvious why. I think while I was there, More than half the people in my department had been there for less than a year.

A big issue that I have seen get worse is safety. And this is mostly not the cast's fault as safety is basically drilled into their heads. A good example is the monorail system. The whole thing needs to be replaced.

The beams have broken off decent sized pieces of concrete and some sections are even warped. Going down the strait away towards Epcot, the beam sags between pylons making the train go up and down slightly(you can even see it in the top mirror when driving) Also the expansion joints may barely touch during the summer when its hottest, But during the winter when its cold, they don't touch.

This could cause the track to come out of alignment and potentially cause major damage to the train or even injury. You can see this on World drive going towards magic kindom. They are also trying to automate the trains. These trains are about 25 years old and each has their own personality out of each end you drive it.

It is a year after they are contracted to have been finished, and they haven't even been able to get any trains fully operational on this system. Instead they had an accident with a work tractor almost injuring or possibly killing a driver with a not well planned test.

On top of it all, they have been basically using all interns on this project instead of real professionals. Its no wonder that they aren't finished and there is something really fishy about this deal with this third party company. It would cost at least a couple hundred million to replace the system and I think we all know Disney isn't willing to do that.

There simply is no return in the investment. Currently the trains have problems many times a day, ranging from small to big, and even get stuck out on the open beam(possibly with you in it) for hours sometimes! Why would Disney let this happen? Simple... Money.

Its not a family company people... Its a money hungry corporation with investors.

Do what you please with your money, Just don't get mad when you keep giving it to them and expect more when you now know you wont and probably will never.

Disney does still do a few things right, but its not much and disappearing fast.

Mar 27, 2016
Agree with most of your comments
by: Anonymous

But an immediate turnoff is when someone says, "Walt would be turning over in his grave." First, it is a completely overused comment and below you. Second, how can you possibly know what Walt would have thought? I used to work for Disney and heard that comment ALL THE TIME, as if people personally knew Walt. Too bad, because the rest of your article is spot on. Unfortunately in the world of a publicly traded company, stock price is everything.

On the bright side, Iger is 100 times better for Disney that Michael Eisner was. Had Eisner not "retired" when he did, I am not sure there would be a Disney today.

Mar 27, 2016
Dad demonstrates how entitled he is
by: Willem

Self-entitled much, "Dad"?

Disney isn't pricing itself for "commoners". Disney is pricing itself for people willing to pay the price they're charging. If you don't want to pay the price, don't go to WDW.

You say Value Resorts "start" at $300 a night. 10 seconds of Internet research later, I found Value Resorts at half that price. If I can find that price in less time than it takes to put on shoes, clearly prices don't "start" at $300.

And yes, it did cost $4 to enter WDW in 1971. Now, in 2016 dollars that's just shy of $24, and you're intentionally ignoring that no one could rides in 1971 without purchasing expensive tickets (does "E ticket" ring a bell?) to ride the rides.

Mar 27, 2016
Hoping someone high up listens..
by: Anonymous

We raised our kids in the Disney Parks. Husband worked extremely hard to make OT to pay for the passes. We never took vacations. Disney was our treat. Our play ground so to speak. No matter how bad things were, going to Disney always made things fade in the background for a few hours. But now, our kids are grown and Disney is just a memory. We can't afford the prices as they are today. I know it takes a lot to run the parks and all that it entails. One child's dream was to work there. That became a realty. But what they pay the actual attraction workers, that make the parks what they are, are so underpaid that living below poverty is putting it mildly. That dream is fading. It's not as fun as it was at first. I know none of it matters to the uppity mucks... I believe with all my heart Walt would be sorely disappointed what has happened to his dream..

Mar 27, 2016
Poor judgement
by: Patricia Markham

I agree that you have used poor judgement in raising prices the way you have. Morning hours and late night hours are out of control for us commoners. Keep going up and they're will be no ore value at all . People like my family can't afford every year nowadays at these prices. I guess what they are saying is true time to go to your competitor

Mar 27, 2016
by: Anonymous

Walt was already dead when WDW opened....

Aside from that, it only cost $4 BECAUSE YOU HAD TO BUY ADDITIONAL TICKETS. So basically, if you wanted to enjoy the parks like we can now and have the option to ride whatever you want whenever you wanted as many times as you wanted....you had to buy more ticket books....

Mar 27, 2016
Disney owes you nothing
by: Anonymous

Pages like this are obnoxious because they exemplify the entitled feeling that poor cast members have to deal with when guests are forced to confront that "the world of fantasy" is contained within the grim rules of reality.

Guess what? It costs money to run a theme park. A lot of money. There are over 70,000 employees in Disney World alone. Admission prices are basically all for operating costs of the park--Disney makes its real money from food and merchandise sales. If you'd really been paying attention to Disney news, you'd be aware that there have been a TON of construction projects recently. Just at Disney World, Fantasyland was expanded, MK has had parking lot upgrades, Hollywood Studios is getting significant expansions with Star Wars and Toy Story Lands, Epcot is getting a Frozen ride in Norway, Animal Kingdom is undergoing construction on Pandora, and there's been lots of construction in Disney Springs. And that's not even mentioning Shanghai Disney, an entire other PARK, which is currently behind schedule and over budget. These things cost money.

The statement about the parks becoming less special needs friendly is also ridiculous. Most (some of the older rides might not) have disability accommodations, and there is even a disability access service through guest relations for those that can't stand in line for long.

Walt was of the mindset that the parks would never really be "finished". Things would be added or replaced as time progresses. For the most part, Disney parks has done that.

You do not have an inherent "right" to be able to go to Disney. It's like any other theme park, despite whatever emotional attachment you may have. They need to make their money, because if they can't, the magic that DOES happen will disappear. Some guests are ridiculous and have money to spend, and like any sensible company, Disney accommodates.

That being said, no company is perfect. I for one am not a fan of the general lack of support for cast members, and the tyrannical way in which Disney handles issues of copyright. Not to mention the rumors of Iger taking a pay raise despite cast member hours being slashed to offset costs.

Those are legitimate concerns. Your whining that you can't afford Disney, like Disney has some sort of obligation to you, is not. If anything, blame the economy.

Mar 27, 2016
MY disney is gone
by: Anonymous

As a Florida native, I miss the old disney. The disney (not capitalized on purpose) I grew up in is gone. Both my parents worked at Disney when it opened. My brother an I were given the awesome gift of growing up in the park (literally). On non-school days, we would be released into the park at the beginning of my parents' shifts and park security would keep an eye on us and update them as to where we were...and whether or not we were behaving...lol. This was back in the day of the "E" ticket rides (a lot of people don't understand the true meaning of that phrase).

The theme park from back in those days was an awesome place. I am deeply saddened that those days are gone forever. I am even more sad for those who will never know the 'magic' that USED to be disney.

BTW, my lack of capitalizing the name disney is because I have lost all respect for the company.

Mar 26, 2016
Lost the perspective
by: Anonymous

I was very fortunate to be selected for the Disney World College Program during the summer of 1989. I was one if the first lifeguards at typhoon lagoon and loved it. It was a life changing experience for sure

We decide 20 years ago to become Disney Vacation Club members. For many years we went 3 times a year. Now we are lucky to go once a year. It is EXTREMELY expensive for a family of 6 to go. We are from CT and have to get expensive flights, annual passes which have have declined in value drastically, not to mention the outrageous price of food etc. I don't feel as though Disney is going in the right direction. They have lost the perspective big time. Walt did this big enterprise so adults and kids can have fun together. Who can afford it??? It's killing the American Dream. Shame on Disney ...

Mar 26, 2016
Cast members are left out in the cold
by: Anonymous

Glad I can post anonymously.... Another one of the rising problems with Disney is the lack of support and loyalty to the cast members that work so hard for them. They are cutting hours, paying as little as they can... Most cast members are living below the poverty line, and if they aren't- it's because they are both working, possibly more than one job. Sadly- the career that I had always dreamed of having is now making me sick when I think about trying to support myself on- and will likely begin searching for other companies to join.

Mar 26, 2016
lost magic
by: Anonymous

The new prices don't reflect the new things in the parks. Its been years before they really did anything major to the parks. Just little changes to keep the people coming back for more. Sad, how people save all year just to be nickel and dimed for things that should be included. The resorts are way over rated. Nothing special at all. They should give free drinks at the resorts for guests and other perks for staying on property. You get a bed and skimpy soap and not enough towels. Instead of feeling special staying at the resorts I actually count the days for when I can go home and get a drink that isn't located miles away and waiting in line for everything is draining. Lost the feeling awhile ago. Going to find a new vaction destination.

Mar 26, 2016
Go somewhere else.
by: Anonymous

If you are unhappy with the price increases at Disney, just go somewhere else for your vacation. As long as people are willing to pay the rising prices, Disney will keep raising them. They are in business for one reason: to make a profit. It's as simple as supply and demand. If the demand is there, they will thrive. If enough people decide that prices are too high and forego their vacations, Disney will see that they have reached a threshold. These new offerings for early morning hours and late night hours are a test. If enough people pay for them, they will become permanent.

Mar 26, 2016
I miss Disney
by: Connie Brake Young

I have loved Disney ever since I went to Disneyland as a child in 1968. My dad was stationed at EL Toro and wanted our family to see it.When we moved to Georgia we started going to WDW when it opened. As an adult We would try to go yearly. But I haven't been since 2014. We simply can not afford it. I miss it very much and hope the prices will come down some day. My daughter went in January and stayed at Pop Century. She said the housekeeping was terrible and there is a horrible smell there. I just miss WDW.

Mar 26, 2016
Disney is out of control
by: Anonymous

I think that Disney is focusing on the wrong things also. Relations is a joke anymore. They sell products and within a month they are not permitted in the parks. The dinning has sky rocketed and have taken Characters of of the parks for new characters that shouldn't be in Magic Kingdom. The people have been the parks biggest supports are being shut out!!!! Please stop this madness. People loved the way Disney was built to be.

Mar 26, 2016
by: Anonymous

I'm a former 7 year cast member and as much as I love the company, this absolutely sickens me! $150 for 3 hours in the park, uhhhh, thats what emh was/is. Sure, non resort guezts dont get to experience that perk but is charging all that money really the way to go about it? Are they doing this to cover the cost of the expansions? And honestly, do we really need avatar land? Sure, it was popular years ago but already forgotten. Star Wars Land? The most popular movie franchise ever, but does it need its own land? Iger is ruining Hollywood Studios, it has lost its original feel of a movie studio. And another point of view: Us cast members that love the company and love our guests, sometimes work 60 hours per week. Well were living at poverty level. Some work at more than just Disney to make ends meet! My rent was $650(yes its loe compared to other apartments) then you add utilities, tv or internet, car insurance, groceries, and other bills. My 40hr check was around $650 a week. So Iger is overcharging all of our guests and under paying the work force... So sad!

Mar 26, 2016
Out of Hand
by: AP

Couldn't agree with you more. I actually started feeling that way while planning my last trip which was November 2015. In 5 years,I had managed to go 6 times each time spending thousands of dollars and countless hours planning. I have now decided to spend my Disney dollars elsewhere. I have 2 cruises booked for the next year and not on Disney cruise line. I decided I needed a break from the "if you don't do this your trip will suck" mentality. All of these extras and the mindset behind them has really just turned me off. Will we eventually go back? Yes, because my boys love it but we will not do the "extras". Mainly because I know we can have a great time without them. We have done trips where there were no extras. It has gotten out of hand.

Mar 26, 2016
No more "magic"
by: Disneyfanwv

You are so right. My family goes to Disney a lot. In the beginning, 1980s, our family would spend an entire 7 days, staying at a resort, with park hoppers and even flying and renting a car. Now fast forward to now. Our kis are grown, and I don't see us taking our grandchildren to Disney like we did . their parents. When we do get a chance to visit disney now, it's not 7 days, it's 4 days at a Value Resort, not the moderate like we used to, no park hopping and we drive 20 hours because if we fly, it cuts our days down from 4 days to 2, still no park hopping. Can't afford it and we have excellent jobs with excellent pay, not drs,wages, but a good income. Disney has priced us right out of the "magic". So sad my grandchildren will never experience it.

Mar 26, 2016
disney idiot
by: commoner

I think that there is some dissolution in the pricing structures. There are many places in the united states to visit. Disney is not the only vacation spot in the world. Because there is such a large amount of visitors there has to be some means of organizing the fun. This is not meant to price you out it is meant to make your visit better with an opportunity to visit in a less crowded time. Not everyone stays on property to get the extra magic hours , so those who stay off site will have a chance to pay for the extra time without it being to crowed. There are tricks to avoid the more crowed days and times. There are tricks to not spend a fortune. Packing your own food and scheduling off season times helps. You come down twice a year? Buy a season pass rather then just tickets and you even get discounts. Plan ahead use the fast pass system and don't borrow money to come to the parks. Disney is not trying to force out the middle class! It is trying to entertain everyone with best entertainment venues in the world. If was just for the richest people we would all be going to wally world instead! yes I am an idiot but I am a Disney Idiot and know what is going on here!

Mar 26, 2016
What's the solution?
by: Anonymous

But what's the solution? The parks are packed to the limits with the current prices going up every year. So if you hold prices steady or even drop them, the crowds rise even more. 6 months out is no longer enough lead to get a reservation at a restaurant because there are just too many people. So what are the alternatives? Drop prices and get even more people on property? Impose limits on how many people can make reservations or be in the parks?

Mar 26, 2016
Too Much
by: Anonymous

I've always told my son, "Five years after your first child is born, I get it and we are headed to Disney." My first granbaby comes this holiday season. Quite frankly, I'm not sure if I'll be able to save enough money before summer of 2022. But, save I do. Every month even though I am disabled. Don't go twice a year, go once. Don't stay at a deluxe. Try a moderate. Modify your trips and try something a little less expensive. I promise us people in the values won't give you cooties.

Mar 26, 2016
Bob is so right
by: Tinker Bell

I can not even go there with my family. Way way to much money. What is so sad too, is the money is going into someone pockets ad they do not pay their people that good either.

Mar 26, 2016
High cost of Dsney
by: Leona Breede

I so agree with above letter and what it contains. We first
Visited The World on 1977 only 1 park and stayed at campground. We have been luck to be able to return at least
25+ times But prices/special event costs have taken the dream

Away from many families. Disney needs to rethink Walts
Dream for the family. Very unhappy with all the changes, yes
Some were needed but too much has been lost
First timers get too wrapped up with all the needed reservations and watching time to make the fast pass time
Spontinative activities have been taken over with rushing to
Make next time appoint. Sad

Mar 26, 2016
Magic Chaos
by: Anonymous

The Magic is totally gone for the guests the stress I see on their faces as they race around the magic kingdom to wait in long lines and get no reservations for restaurants. You call this making magic. I call it creating chaos.

Mar 26, 2016
So sad
by: Anonymous

I use to be proud of being a Disney cast member... No more it's now an embarrassment .. I don't like feeling like I'm part of ripping people off so when I work I give them the best service I can....The only way I can make up for the money grabbers.

Mar 26, 2016
Mean Spirited?
by: Marge

You had to call us all mean-spirited. Sorry you feel that way.

Mar 26, 2016
10 trips to Disney in 10 years but no more
by: Anonymous

Dad, could not agree with your rant more. Well said! We have vacationed at WDW every year for the past 10 years and always stayed on property. We are all booked for May and unfortunately (or fortunately for some of the more mean spirited commenters on this page, who like the idea of fewer guests so the lines will be shorter for them)I think this will be the last for a while.

Just not feeling the magic and have been feeling it less and less for the past few years. Hate the changes they have made to FP selection since we were last there 6 months ago. Way too much work trying to get around the crowd manipulations Disney is trying to enforce.

Also having a child with Special Needs, not happy that they have removed the FP choices for parades and fireworks. Since the DAS was instituted we did what the powers that be told us to do which was use DAS in conjunction with FP. Now cannot get our child into a reasonably jostle free zone using a FP for the parades as that option no longer there. All in all I think we would love to see Harry Potter World next year.

Thanks for speaking out Dad.

Mar 26, 2016
by: John Lepore

Here, Here, "Dad". You've voiced what I've been thinking since my family's Disney Vacation in June 2015. I don't think "Disney" is going in the direction the "FOUNDER" would be proud of. I believe that Walt knew money would be necessary to accomplish what he envisioned. Not that he envisioned doing what he did to make a lot of money. My father had taken our family to Disney World in 1974 and I thought back then that something didn't seem to match what I thought was Walt's idea of his "family park".

Mar 26, 2016
No expiration
by: Sad

Visited WDW in February, very disappointed to discover that the no expiration ticket option had been eliminated.
We love camping at Camp Wilderness but visiting the parks has become too expensive.
I cannot imagine the cost for a family to visit WDW.
Disney is a business but it must keep in mind the people it serves.

Mar 26, 2016
price increases
by: Anonymous

When my daughter was a teen, we began going to to Disney World every other year. It was expensive and we saved to afford the trip. We stayed at the Polynesian, feeling (if you need to scrimp and save,) go for the gusto. These vacations were truly magical.

The parks' restaurant food surprisingly good with many options available. We did not need to make reservations months in advance, just be willing to eat at "off" hours. We never bought "fast pass". We waited in line, or went back to the ride at another time. The parks were clean, the staff smiling and helpful. Visitors were polite, or staff intervened. Transportation clean and available, prolonged waiting, only at the busiest times ( ex: park closing)We had no desire to leave the property, all was available, to us, right there. As time progressed , we watched as the parks decreased in cleanliness and a decrease in staff helpful smiles. We watched as " perks" stopped, rides closed, and other changes occurred.

I understand the need to show profit, and answer to stock holders. What I do not understand is how these price increases continue to occur, with less offered to clients. Often, the attractions needing repairs, and good cleaning. When I speak with others in my financial situation, they no longer plan Disney vacations ( for these reasons) We are not asking for "privileges" just a return of the "little" things(which, we believe)made Disney a very special vacation destination.

Mar 26, 2016
Then stop
by: Captain Obvious

Since Disney is about money... the only thing they understand is money... open letters like these do not work.

What will work is if you and the other fan boys/girls stop spending money at Disney.

That is the only thing they will understand.

I stopped spending money at WDW over 4 years ago. I saw a declining return on the money I spent there. I decided to travel the world, and go to theme parks that I thought were earning my dollar, and where I got a better value for the money I am spending.

If you decide to take a holiday from spending money at Disney, that will send a much clearer message to Bog Iger than any open letter.

Mar 26, 2016
DVC Member Unmagic
by: Annie

We have been DVC members for about 10 years and were able to travel to WDW at least 2 - 3 times most years. However, that has changed over the past 3 years when we have only been able to afford a once a year trip due to rising costs.

The cost of a trip to WDW has increased about 10% per year in travel, ticket, and meal costs. Unfortunately, work salaries have not increased to meet the Disney increases. When we bought DVC, we were impressed with the value for future trips to a place we loved to go so much, but have since become disillusioned by the magic we thought we bought. As it is now, I see a point where we will trade out our points for other vacation options or take an annual trip to stay at our DVC resort but spend our vacation dollars off Disney property skipping the parks and restaurants.

The increasing ticket costs, rising prices for mediocre food, and large and often unruly, rude crowds have taken the luster off the magic. Even the cast members no longer seem to have the caring, sparkle, and enthusiasm they once had. The DVC resorts which are sold as deluxe accommodations, have never really been on par with other brand deluxe accommodations but they have been considered as such under the Disney name.

The exclusive "perks and advantages" of DVC membership so highly spoken of by the DVC guides seem to be disappearing. The beautiful resort rooms we were shown when we bought our piece of the magic, are now often worn and not as clean as they should be. During our last 10 day trip, we got clean towels only once and never got a full cleaning when it was scheduled despite calls to housekeeping that it had been overlooked. Items supposed to be in the room have often been
missing or are broken.

I am really wondering if it is worth it anymore. The pixiedust has lost its' sparkle and I almost feel like the mouse is laughing because he stole the cheese. And that is really sad to say.

Mar 26, 2016
by: Anonymous

We have been going to Disney since our youngest son was born. Dan has disabilities, and he and my husband have the most amazing time together when they are at the parks. I have never been much of a fan, but it has been wonderful to see those two have such a great time together.

For someone who never has been excited to go to the parks, I now hate going. I can't tell you how many times I have been shoved out of the way, usually by someone who does not speak much English, when I am trying to be polite and not get into someone's path. The crowds are unbelievable, and I do understand that raising prices is one way to control it. (My idea of a great vacation is to find an isolated place where I can have "peace and quiet.") The shocker to me is that my husband is now talking about not going to Disney as often and not buying annual passes anymore. (I have been insulted just by the price charged for parking your car.)

Also, Disney has made it increasingly difficult to bring our son into the park. Dan is in a wheelchair, and my husband needs to ride a scooter because he broke his lower back quite a few years ago. Because my husband is ingenious, he had Dan hooked to the back of his scooter with short bungee cords.

The small wheels in the front were almost under the base of his scooter, so Dan was riding on the large wheelchair wheels on the back. There was no way Dan would tip over unless both the scooter and the wheelchair tipped together. Dick and Dan went to Disney this way for many years. Then--all of a sudden they were not allowed to enter the park--safety hazard Disney said. So--because my husband still has good upper-body strength, he pulled Dan alongside of him. (In my opinion, that is for more hazardous than the setup they had before.)

Now they are getting lots of flack about that setup. I am probably on their list of "people to watch out for," because this is outrageous to me--especially when I am getting knocked out of the way or I watch people dodge in front of Dick and Dan's wheelchair, making it necessary for Dick to constantly be on the lookout for the dodgers.

I apologize for the rant, but this has been one of my biggest annoyances for years. I actually am a big fan of capitalism, because it has given my family and those before me an amazing amount of freedom and abundance. But there usually was also morality behind much of the decision-making--especially in small businesses.

Mar 26, 2016
Enough for Me
by: Wood

As a family, we are done with McDisney. It's too much commercial, not enough product. Movies are predictably dumb, characters are no longer imaginative, parks are dirty, staff seems more and more disinterested, and the corporate ethic--on the whole--seems disingenuous. We don't let our kids get hooked on Disney anymore, and we had to come to the same conclusion as many commenters/consumers here: if the value is missing, the product should be avoided.

Mar 26, 2016
Glass Half Full or Half Empty
by: ticketjoe

... I have absolutely no problem with paying for additional time in the park -- and for you with Universal as an alternative, don't get to comfortable because theme park minds think alike!

You may soon see the day the UCO charges for added experience. I am a stock holder, as well as a huge Disney fan - so certainly anything that increases my share prices - I'm in favor. I, also, am a DVC member since 1998 and still feel it was the best vacation investment I've ever made. For you DVC folks regretting your decision to buy - try fully taking advantage of it ... visit Disney's Vero Beach Resort, Disney's Hilton Head Resort, change it up and visit Disneyland, or take a Disney Cruise! The options are endless - I'm spending a long weekend this June in downtown Chicago with my DVC points.

I work one full-time job and (4) part-time jobs in order to experience great vacations and I don't consider myself to be in the 1%. It's all a matter of priorities! My biggest gripe presently with Disney is they are taking all the spontaneity out of vacations -- I don't like making dining reservation 6 months out and Fast-Pass selections 3 months out -- I've been to Disney enough times that I like to do things in the moment and these programs preclude me from dining and riding the most popular attractions with exceptional wait time. Money is no object when I'm on a Disney Vacation!

Mar 26, 2016
Destroying the magic
by: Anonymous

When I was growing up, we could go to spend 5 days at Disney parks multiple times a year. Now we are doing well to go once every couple of years. You will never find a more Disney loving family that almost cried when leaving Magic Kingdom the last night, but these prices are just too much. I would rather be able to afford it and be in large crowds than not be able to go at all.

Bob Iger, you need to realize that the wealth you are brining in means quite little when compared to the joy you could be brining families. Keep Disney World as The Happiest Place on Earth.

Mar 26, 2016
Sad to see Disney dying.
by: Anonymous

Whether you agree or disagree with this article it is quite clear that the majority agree. Disney really should be listening. My family and I have not done any other vacation other than Disney for the last 15 years. That's over for us. Disney greed has drove us away. Spent my last Florida trip at Universal and loved it that's what we're going from now on.

Mar 26, 2016
Are we making up for the bad deals with ESPN
by: Dennis

Just a simple question, Are we making up for the deals gone wrong, or cost of ESPN? The movies and parks are very profitable, but ESPN, not so much, attack improving that situation and the company would return to profitability. It is widely known, ESPN is the strain on the company bottom line.

Mar 26, 2016
It all Started with Humility
by: Dennis

Disney wanted a place to go, a clean place, an affordable place to take his children, that included a fun, clean family environment. No classes of people, no pandering to this or that crowd. The concept was simple, nice, clean, friendly place for all to come, welcome to all who come to this happy place. I do believe we have lost sight of the true Disney spirit. Yes, it has to be profitable, I get it, but there is; or should be a limit to the profit margin. So that all can enjoy the parks for years to come, generation after generation.

Mar 26, 2016
Go ahead try to stop them
by: The Hatter

Here's something to clue you guy's in... Bob Iger may be doing these things but he's not the one to blame. Just like in today's political arena, everyone was being warned well in advance and no one chose to listen, let alone do anything.

Roy Disney spoke of the perils of the road the company was headed down once one man started to reveal his true intentions of milking the company for all it's worth. He spoke of the disgrace that was then going on in the company, and let me clue you again Disney hasn't been Disney for MANY years. You who speak now have NO idea the Disney I experienced growing up.

I was truly a place of dreams and it's not something I have experienced since Michael Eisner took the helm of the company. When he first arrived as a stock holder we were amazed at the turn around he was creating, Then the 3rd year into his tenure the truth was revealed... We have him to thank for this incredible desecration of the most beloved ICON in the world. Children who attend the parks DO NOT experience the true magic Walt created...

From the time of his tenure MANY entertainers tried to continue the Walt legacy but over the years one by one so much incredible MAGIC was phased out to make room for expansion, marketing, bonuses all for the love of the dollar at the top of the ladder. Guaranteed if Roy were here today he would have only four words for everyone I TOLD YOU SO

Mar 26, 2016
Walt was the 1%
by: Anonymous

Can't afford it, don't go. Supply and demand. Simple economics. Disney is a business, not a charity. Plenty of options out there in the real world. As a Disney shareholder, I love the changes. Seasonal pricing was long overdue. Back in Walt's time, there were lots of adjustments for those with $$. Want to ride an E-ticket ride more than once? You paid for it. Wanted the Disneyland Hotel instead of the Hojo's? You paid for it.

Changes were desperately needed, and I for one am glad they're here.

Mar 26, 2016
by: Paul Price

As a former cast member and as a Balloon salesman on Main Street , we used to complain that even when I worked in the park we could not afford to go to the park , thank goodness for employee privileges. Disney Cast Members had a saying back in the early 90's ... MICKEY IS NOT A MOUSE , BUT A MONEY HUNGRY RAT , It is sad to see how Disney treat their employees and screws them over . I stopped visiting the Disney Compound because of the greed . What Walt Disney Created was wonderful , sadly that no longer exists

Mar 26, 2016
Hey Bob I dislike your stop options crazymind!
by: Patricia

Ok, Mr Bob IGER, I'm French so excuse my poor english (poor it's a strange world for you, not? the rich man!). Disney is for dreaming, for children and grandchildren, for love, for family, for fun, for peace and you kill that every day with your bad ideas and bad management! So stop that! You don't need nore money but we need Disney and we don't want to lose that because for you only the rich may go to Disney!

Mar 26, 2016
I agree with you Dad
by: Anonymous

This is why I own a non-Disney time share so I stay in a nice place cheaper than a hotel. We always drive to Orlando, and don't go to Disney parks anymore. We prefer Universal Studios & IOA. we don't have little ones and USO has more for us than Disney. hopefully they figure out Avatar before it's no longer relevant. we don't plan on returning till they finish Avatar. I'm also glad I saw Disneyland years ago as I don't think I could afford a trip there anymore.

Mar 26, 2016
Limited Number of Guests
by: Joe

The new early hour and late hour programs state "for limited number of guests". I remember when they would sell the Halloween and Christmas events as such. Try them now. You can't walk down Main Street because it's so crowded during one of these events. Don't even try to see the 1st parade; you'd need to line up an hour before it starts. Nothing "special" about that.

Mar 26, 2016
Learn your facts
by: Anonymous

First, Walt died before the magic kingdom was built, so your last paragraph is invalid. Second, the magic evenings package allows guests to come in at 4pm and stay through 3am with the last 3 hours having zero wait times at attractions, free drinks and free ice cream. I'd much rather pay for ELEVEN hours in a park, with no wait times for the evening and freebies any day over one regular day in the park waiting for everything.

Mar 26, 2016
Changes at Disney
by: Anonymous

Thank you for saying what I have been thinking for several years now. My mantra has been, " Walt would not be happy about this". I have been going to Disney since it opened and have seen many, many changes, not all good and certainly not for the common folk. I am a cast member and have been with the Company for 18 years, I only work 2-3 days a week but I have always loved Disney. Unfortunately, the past few years Disney Cast Members have not been treated well at all, especially Seasonal CM's, they are actively working to get rid of us by making schedules and hours so difficult many have been forced to leave. So sad, as these are the CM's with the experience and work ethic Disney needs. I predict that in 2-3 years this action will come back to bite them you know where!!!

Mar 26, 2016
One More Thing!
by: Donna

Oh yes, and let's add to that page the fact that even though tickets went up we now have peak season and peak season prices - My one day ticket during peak time was $124 (or $125) and after I bought it I went online for Magic Kingdom hours on the day I am going (peak) remember and the Magic Kingdom closes at 10:00 that night in July! Come on Disney!!!! Why isn't peak price and season later hours? This is BAD!

Mar 26, 2016
So True
by: Sandy L.

This says exactly what my husband and I have been feeling. We became DVC members about 7 years ago as we both love Disney. However. We have more and more talked about selling because we don't like the way Disney is heading. We wanted to be able to take our grandchildren but lately even though our room is covered, we can't afford the tickets! Instead of rich New York housewives let's talk about rich foreigners. Of course people outside the US probably get huge discounts that we are not all getting(??)

Mar 26, 2016
by: Anonymous

It seems by adding in so many "pay for the special event" items, it seems to be making the average guest feel like the the red headed step child. Takes away the magic of the magic kingdom. I miss the days where a ticket was a ticket and once you had one everyone was treated the same. (And before tells me to "work harder" I am in the 1% who can pay for the special privileges.) what made Disney so magical is being taken away. Sad.

Mar 26, 2016
Two Ways to Reduce Crowds
by: Gene

The way I see it, there are two ways to reduce the crowds at the parks. Disney has decided to keep the supply side the same and is reducing demand by raising prices. I would suggest that they could increase the supply side instead by building a new gate on land they already own at WDW. This would spread the crowds out over a larger area with more total attractions. They've already shown that they had the desire and capital to build another park, but they decided to take a major gamble and build it on the other side of the planet in Shanghai. An additional park in Florida would be able to recoup its construction expenses much more quickly where the U.S. demand is already proven. Disney has decided to take the quick and easy way in the U.S. to keep its shareholders happy in the short term. It is doing so, however, by not thinking about the long term. As the Frommer's article suggests, the overall image is Disney is taking hit after hit among its original fans as prices rise and the service that made it famous stagnates at best and is quite possibly declining.

Mar 26, 2016
Try Dollywood instead.
by: Anonymous

Our family used to goto Disney World, Sea World, and other attractions in Orlando. However, the last couple of years we have gone to Dollywood in Pidgeon Forge, TN. Our two daughters saud that they both like Dollywood better. Its a much better value for your money.

Mar 26, 2016
Tired of Idiots
by: Better Days

I will never understand these people who feel that giant corporations need to be defended for their decisions. I call it the "Disney isn't a charity" syndrome". Disney has hever been a charity, but they were always a value for working families. The one thing you didn't mention in this article is while your paying more year after year, it's general for less entertainment.so many areas of the parks sit closed, empty and unused most of the year. For every new thing they open, they close at least one other thing or drastically reduce its hours.

Mar 26, 2016
it breaks my heart
by: Anonymous

I will say that I too worked for the mouse from 2002-2007 and in those 5 yrs I went from super excited to lost the magic...on the inside as a cast member it is not roses...we used to do such awesome things for the guests like buy them treats for no reason or give them our discounts randomly or even help them pass the lines at their favorite rides...

I worked the icon rides like pirates and mansion...I was a mansion maid who was lucky enough to still be in the old ways where we didn't smile and could be "mean" because we were servants of master gracy....it was fun and the guests loved it but now its gone...there is no more of that magic allowed...the pay is not great at all...for the amount of work and crap you put up with as a cast member you would think a company would pay better--trust me since I left and work for their competitor I make way more now--the treatment they get isn't roses either by their management...the last time I was in the MK it was in disrepair and trust me I would notice as a former employee..the food was sub par..the feel of what it used to be was gone and I was saddened and now I don't go anymore...any corporate business will always cater to their shareholders--magic be damned--as long as people will spend the money to go--Disney will continue to rape their dollars and ya know what? it will continue to happen all over again the next day month year ect.

theme parks are suppoed to be fun and exciting...where we go to forget the real world for a few hrs and be part of something bigger than ourselves yet few do this anymore because if you do not have the two dimes to pay you don't get to play and I don't think this is Walts legacy :( I could say more but it would take too long and there just isn't enough room to express my sad heart.

Mar 26, 2016
The demise of Disney
by: Anonymous

We travel from NJ to Disney just about every year. Sometimes twice a year. We get Military discounted tickets and discounted rooms. We take advantage of a good thing. I look around and wonder how people with a couple of kids can afford this. I can see the ones who are trying to get by on what they can.

It saddens me as I look around and see the huge increases in prices. Starbucks taking over the historical Main Street Bakery. I believe these extended hour prices are for non resort guests? Resort guests already get extra morning and evening hours. So maybe on the other nights they are doing this but why the exorbitant price? Why is Disney trying to kill itself?

Why make it a place no one can afford to go to? Make it a place that feasible for an American family to travel to and enjoy themselves.

Mar 26, 2016
Disney Greed
by: Della

The greed is destroying the magic. Many people sacrifice to be able to afford a trip to Disney. Been going for years now and sacrificed plenty. The greed is now taking it out of my hands. Walt would be ver disappointed with what it's become.

Mar 26, 2016
Excuse me?
by: Anonymous

I agree about the overpricing but what did you have to say about New York housewives? Why don't you come up here and explain?

Dad explains

There was a story in the paper last year about a couple of New York housewife's that would get a handicapped guide so they could get to the front of the line. That led to a total change in the way Disney deals with people with special needs and it's not pretty.

Mar 26, 2016
by: Anonymous

How tiresome. Rant, rant, rant. Disney isn't a charity and people who can afford to go aren't demons. By the way, Golden Oak homes start at around $2 million and, yes, most people can't afford them. Who cares! It is far cheaper to build a Poly bungalow that goes for $2.5K per night than an entire, gigantic value resort with rooms for $120 per night. Do the math and you'll figure out what Disney's model is. Yes, they are discouraging people with less money to go to the parks and creating new revenue streams to re-allocate crowds. Fewer people, fewer crowds (equals happier guests), most likely same or higher revenue. It's not rocket science, it's called capitalism.

Mar 26, 2016
Right on!
by: Art W

Don't listen to those clowns. You are right on about Disney. They claim to be listening to the masses, but what happens in the board room has nothing to do with the masses. Keep up the great work.

Mar 26, 2016
You've got issues, Carl Trent
by: Anonymous

Carl, you're just another overly-negative, uninformed, annoying rhetoric-spewing rube.

And do not fall back on the roll in the grave nonsense. People like you only say such stupid things because YOU are unhappy.

So, do us all a favor and SHUT UP! Same goes for the other haters who commented here.

Mar 26, 2016
UK Guest Perspective
by: duffdo

I have been coming to WDW since I was a child. Since 2011 we have been making regular bi-yearly trips and have noticed around a 10pc rise in cost each time. I don't see how this can be justified as like everywhere else wages are stagnant here in the UK. However, we find a way to do it. That is what Disney is relying on and as long as Disney see rising guest numbers, prices will continue to rise. You can't really blame them. They are a business first and foremost. What is sad is they seem to be getting rid of the nice touches that sets them apart. I once got free ice cream because I wasn't smiling (I was smiling afterwards!) You don't hear of stuff like that any more. Food quality has gone downhill and staff just don't seem as happy as they once were. Your shopping doesn't even magically appear in your room any more!

I think people have their own idea of when they will throw in the towel and not go. I think I have got a good few trips left in me.

Mar 26, 2016
Disney Magic is fading.
by: Anonymous

I think that you expressed what most of us living in the real world are feeling about Disney right now.I find it disturbing that there are people who think that us so called normal people should work harder.I bet most of these people don't have a clue what hard work really is.I remember going to Disney World in the seventies and staying at the contemporary resort for a fraction of what it cost today.They didn't need value or moderates resorts because most of the working class people could afford it.Thanks for the all the good information,but I will not be taking my yearly vacation to Disney World anymore.

Mar 25, 2016
Washington Post agrees...
by: Anonymous

"How theme parks like Disney World left the middle class behind" --June 12, 2015


Mar 25, 2016
Well said and
by: Charlie Cacioppo

Totally agree and ive been beating this drum for awhile. My 40 yr love affair is heading for divorce court. As an ap for years enough is enough. Thanks

Mar 25, 2016
Stereotypical Internet whining
by: Anonymous

There is nothing more tiring than insecure internet people ranting against rich guys. Stop complaining and do more with your life.

Mar 25, 2016
2009 and 2010
by: mom of five

In 2009 and 2010. right after the stock market crash. Disney was struggling. prices were down and guest vistiing was down. It will happen again from increases and from the economy tanking with the next few years.

Mar 25, 2016
Twice a year to no vacation at a disney.
by: mom of five

We have went twice a year for eight years. One time for 18 days and my husband and I saved and worked our butt's off for it. We have five kids do deluxe resort and dining. Our minimum stay was for 10 days. We loved extra magic hours. In 2009 we went for 10 days at beach club for 7500. with deluxe dining. Then next year it went to 9200. So on etc. Our last trip we stayed at the holiday inn lake buena vista and a few days at beach club. This year we have no plans to go to disney. We always did extra's boat fireworks. Halloween party, christmas party. If I need to pay magic hours etc. When the continue pay 600 a night for our room without deluxe dining and 200 tip Contemporary, Narcoossee's yachtsman etc. I am done! I will start going to other places in the islands etc. Yes, Disney you have even priced us out. MY husband's job is Very high stress (ptsd). He needs his twice a year to keep saving lives.

Mar 25, 2016
Don't forget the cast members
by: Anonymous

And with all that record attendance and money making, cast members are NOT making a living wage. As a part timer, because of Shanghai, I have not been getting scheduled at all except for holidays that is.

Mar 25, 2016
Hold my ears
by: Anonymous

This is going to be a sure-fire way to kill the MAGIC. There cannot be that great a need for these price increases. Where will they END!!!

Mar 25, 2016
Open letter to Bob
by: Donna

I am so saddened that it has become so much about the money. As a kid, I loved going to WDW and couldn't wait to take our daughter and eventually our grandsons. Our last visit seemed all about money and my husband was disappointed and vows never to go again. After our character breakfast, when it csme to leave a tip, my mother who had laid a $10 bill on the table while getting more money out of her wallet, was informed by our wsiter that her tip was not enough. She informed him that she was getting more money out of her wallet. I found that extremely rude.

Mar 25, 2016
Out of Control
by: Richard

Great letter to Disney big wigs. I have been saying for years ever since Make a Wish sent my youngest boy to Orlando 20 years ago, that Disney keeps raising the resorts, tickets, food and parking more than people's pay raises. Now I can not afford to stay at Disney's properties. I also will not renew our annual passes because of the outrages price increase. Thank you expressing what I been saying for the last 20 years.

Mar 25, 2016
Lies and Slander...
by: Anonymous

Disagree on nearly every point made here....

Extra hours in the morning and evening for an extra price. This doesn't take anything away from anyone, it only adds more time in the park for those who are able to. They arent opening the park any later or closing it any earlier. Everyone is overreacting about this. Keep in mind that before extra magic hours existed, there were E-Ride nights that were an extra fee.

As for ticket prices, yes they are higher and yes it sucks. They go up every year and have been since at least the 90s. Theyre actually going up at a slower rate now than right before Bob came into power, so there is that.

Not going to address rumors of rumors.

More talk about the Disney brand, mostly irrelevant.

The Disney Vacation Club, like any timeshare, is going to have a high entry cost. Its real estate. Most people take out loans for this...

As for things built in the last few years, you only really mention the poly.... which is a deluxe resort and will naturally be more expensive. I can't afford to stay there, but I don't judge the people who can. And I certainly don't judge Disney for expanding upon it.

And you mention Value resorts start at $300... thats just bullshit. Im checking right now and am finding rooms at $120 a night without even trying. The Family Suites are supposed to be used instead of 2 rooms. That IS a value, people were complaining that there werent options for larger families. A family suite can accommodate up to like 7 people or something. Comparing it to the price of a single room is just misleading (like your whole post!).

As for Golden Oak/Four Seasons. Not sure why you are ragging on this. But let me try to settle some arguments you might have with it:
- This isn't taking away from any Disney Resources. All the contractors used to build houses are third party and not on our dime. We probably paved the roads and did the infrastructure, but all that money is coming from the houses.
- Its not in the way of anything. Most people dont even know its there
- The construction of this area has no effect on anyone's vacation

In short, nothing that you mention in this article will change your trip to Disney World. Except the annual price increase that has been going for nearly 30 years anyway. You posted flat out lies and chose to mislead your readers and you should be ashamed of yourself.

If anyone is still reading, here are the things Disney has been working on that will improve everyone's vacation:
- New Fantasyland
- Expanding park hours at Animal Kingdom, reducing the need for a Park Hopper ticket (makes all 4 parks "all day" parks... except studios right now because of construction, but that will end)
- Expansion of Disney Springs, making it so you can spend a good half day there or even a full day there instead of park admission
- Improving bus transportation that has been loathed by guests for years
- Shorten EMH to expand regular park hours
- After a rocky implementation, FastPass+ is now crazy simple to use and is far better than legacy FastPass ever could have been (last week, during the beginning of spring break, i got fastpasses for 7 Dwarfs, Thunder and Pirates at 1:00 in the afternoon. The latest pass was for 4:30)
- Future expansions (Star Wars, Toy Story, Pandora, etc...)

Stop finding things to complain about.

A poor liberal who didnt fall for your EXPLETIVE DELETED

Mar 25, 2016
by: Anonymous

I have had year passes for over 20 years and this year gave them up. Disney has priced itself out of my price range. I love Disney but refuse to pay the price anymore and not get any perks and just watch them continue to charge for each little thing. Universal and SeaWorld will be getting my business

Mar 25, 2016
Who do we write to?
by: Anonymous

One post suggested contacting Disney with complaints. What is the best way to do this? Do you have an email address to send your concerns to?

Mar 25, 2016
Sad but true
by: Barbara

It saddens me to say you are absolutely right "Dad" about the way Disney is heading.

I first went in the 80's with my 4 little ones, parents, and husband. We made the Disney World trip from Maine so many times, I can't even count them!

My parents were raving fans...going once or twice every single year. Neither of my parents had much of a childhood. My mom grew up in Nazi Germany and Dad was the son of Hungarian immigrants who scraped and worked for everything they had, which wasn't much. He later became Military and fought for our country. But when they went to Disney, they became happy kids. So happy to just BE there, watching the people, admiring the manicured grounds, loving the rides, the food, the shows and the Magic!
They took me and their grandchildren many times and they are some of the very best memories I have.

Mom died in August of 2009 and Dad had been diagnosed with stage IV colon cancer. They had been planning their fall Disney trip that year, but mom never made it. Dad was going to cancel, but then decided he would go one final time and most of the children, spouses, and grandchildren went to be with him on his final Disney Adventure. He died 4 months after the trip. That was 6 yrs ago, and I have not been able to afford to go back, although I would dearly love to go with my own grand children. I am so afraid they will never know the Magic that was Disney.

The ever increasing prices have kept me from going and that itself is heartbreaking.

Disney...you make tons of money! Yes, I know it costs a lot to make all that magic, but c'mon. Pay your cast members more (two of my sons were in the Disney College Program and spent a couple summers there each being cast members) and keep your prices from skyrocketing.

If you have any sort of heart, you'll understand that not only Magic is made there, but memories with parents, grandparents, children and grandchildren that are worth so very much to so many. Too many wonderful people simply cannot afford your exorbitant costs. I'm begging here....please realize what you're doing before the only memories made will be by the ultra rich. We "common" people who supported you in your early years are pretty important people too.

Mar 25, 2016
Just saying
by: Cutepilgrim

I agree wholeheartedly with all your points. Disney is becoming nothing more than a money grabbing, greedy company of the worst sort!! The average family with two children most definitely are being squeezed right out of the magic that is Disney. The ideas floating around about a $15.00 a day charge for the magic bands, a daily rental fee if you will, on an item that you are pretty much forced to have is an outrage.

The ideas being tossed around regarding a charge for fast passes as well as a charge for the magic express, both of them currently built into the astronomical price of your Disney package are further proof that the Disney experience is headed to an a la carte pricing structure. These are ideas directly from Disney's survey. There will be absolutely no incentive what so ever to stay in the park. The dining plans have risen, the resort prices are skyrocketing, not to mention the ticket prices, parking and forget about visiting with any major characters as you now need to spend enough to feed a small nation to go to one of the restaurants to meet the characters.

Gone are the days when these characters freely walked about the park!! Disney is truly becoming a vacation only for the 1%, how very sad! And oh by the way, how has Shanghai become our problem??? Disney is in my opinion becoming too expensive for the average American!! Just saying!

Mar 25, 2016
"Worked Hard" Garbage
by: Ane onymous

I love the people who chime in here to defend disney and their insane price increases and special exclusive perks arguing that people who can afford them have "worked hard" and if you can't afford them you should just "work harder". You people do understand that the economy is a pyramid right ? That for every person on the top there requires a million people on the bottom ? And it doesn't matter how hard any of those people work. In fact a lot of the people on the bottom work a lot harder than the people on the top do. But thats ok, just keep defending the the same garbage that either leaves you stuck where you are, or that has given you the advantages over others but makes you feel good about yourselves because you can say you "earned" it because you "worked hard". Lol.

Mar 25, 2016
Maximize shareholder return
by: Anonymous

It's really pretty simple, Disney is a publicly traded company and the primary function of a public company is to maximize shareholder returns, not be for the little guy or the other 99%. I hate it that prices go up each year but we have purchased DVC points twice to at least lock in our resort prices. As stated in another comment, this was one heck of a whiney post. Get off the high horse of entitlement. I've never really been impressed with this blog/site or the advice given/tone of your posts. I won't be wasting my time reading your posts any more.

Mar 25, 2016
by: Anonymous

I'm not disagreeing with you, but I’m confused by all the people saying they’re going to go to Universal instead to save money. A one day ticket to Universal is $105-155. Their hotels are all expensive.

Mar 25, 2016
by: Connie

I've heard similar complaints about Disney property ticket prices, but this is a new one. Just like with Trump-owned businesses, the rich just seem to get richer, and the hard-working employees are treated like puppets :(

Mar 25, 2016
entitled much?
by: dalayney

Biggest whiney bratty entitled post ever. You have no idea, the people who can afford the bungalow, the extra hours, ? You have no idea what they've had to sacrifice to get those luxuries. Disney vacations are night a right. They are a luxury. Stop whining and change your circumstances if you want those things. And it irks me how some assume they know what Walt is thinking. How dare you.

Mar 25, 2016
Goto Europe!
by: Anonymous

It's cheaper to goto Europe. It costs the same to fly a family of four to Norway, one of the most expensive countries in the world, than to goto Disney World. I like Norway at EPCOT but I be the real thing is better. And that's the most expensive place to visit.

Go somewhere else in the world and it's cheaper.

Don't spend your money at Disney World anymore. It's a joke.

Mar 25, 2016
Just one more opinion here.
by: Anonymous

Can you link to something that demonstrates how Walt was "for the little guy"?

As far as I could tell (and tbh, I was not a real Disney fan as a child, so I am unaware of his actual perspective), he wanted a place that/where adults could share experiences with their children. Carnivals and fairs of the day were somewhat seedy, and when they weren't, they catered most rides and experiences to the little ones, and adults couldn't fit/ride with them.

WD had a pretty nice income for the times; it's a good bet that he wanted a place where people in HIS economic tier could go.

I think it's a pretty good chance that if he were alive today, he'd be fine with Golden Oak and the Four Seasons. Just look at how long it took for Disney World to offer value hotels, let alone moderates.

Despite the artists' strike fiasco, I've a feeling that he knew what was PC to admit and what to not admit.

But with all that knowledge and theory, I still love a Disney vacation, and I will do my best to afford one.

Mar 25, 2016
by: Anonymous

It cracks me up how people moan and groan over how expensive Disney has become. You know why it's so expensive? Because folks have bought into the hype that Disney is something special. I know adults, who don't take kids, going to Disney year after year. Doesn't make sense.
As far as Disney charging extra money for perks and extra park time, more power to them. Special privileges should come to those who have worked hard and earned the money to afford such things. I guess we could all be Democratic Socialist and make them pay for our tickets, because we decided to have 4 kids.
You know how to get the prices to come down? Quit going to the park, hold a protest (it's the in thing to do), block the park entrance so no one can get in.
Buck up and quit blaming your inability to pay for something dictate the joy of others. Get a 2nd job, give up cigarettes and beer, or quit driving a car or truck that gets 15 MPG.
If you want to waste your money on over priced Disney entertainment, don't blame Disney, it's a free market and your able to go to Holy Land for much less.

Mar 25, 2016
Capitalism is really to blame
by: Blaine


I completely understand your perspective, and share similar sentiments. However, Mr. Iger is doing a pretty good job (75% approval IMO), however, this blog is specific to the parks, and even more specifically to WDW. There is plenty of "blame" to go around for the price increases and special event announcements. Also, don't discount the recent, and upcoming expansions.

There was a time when we scraped together enough money to go to WDW yearly. It was worth every penny... and memory. It has been 3 years since my last visit because of the specific inflation ratios you mentioned.

While I am disappointed, I also know that the major influence here is the market (capitalism.) It is not Disney's (nor Iger's) fault that I have not had a decent raise in years. It is also not their fault that there are many people that are willing and able to pay the current, and increasing prices.

As long as the attendance and revenue supports their decisions, why would executives change their current direction. You are right that this is very sad to many of us, including me.

Mar 25, 2016
Then Don't Go
by: Anonymous

While I agree look to other options. Last year we went to Universal and got more than our monies worth compared to Disney. I decided I won't be going back to WDW for a minimum of at least two years. All the construction going on at AK and DHS puts more pressure on crowds going to MK. To me that's the outrage is raising ticket prices when you have two parks that are now half days. Finally FastPass+ blows. To get three fast passes isn't a value in what you get in rides. I know you can obtain other FP+ but getting them for decent rides is beyond hard.

Mar 25, 2016
Bang on
by: Anonymous

I agree completely. They are also charging a premium for better parking spots too. It is really too much. I am regretting purchasing DVC and we have not even had our first stay yet. I may use up all my points this summer and not go back for a few years. I may even rent my points out indefinitely and use the money to go to Universal and cruise on Royal Carribean. Disney needs to know the consumer has many options, they are not the only game in town.

Mar 25, 2016
Bang on
by: Anonymous

I agree completely. They are also charging a premium for better parking spots too. It is really too much. I am regretting purchasing DVC and we have not even had our first stay yet. I may use up all my points this summer and not go back for a few years. I may even rent my points out indefinitely and use the money to go to Universal and cruise on Royal Carribean. Disney needs to know the consumer has many options, they are not the only game in town.

Mar 25, 2016
Disney is outta control
by: Matt Lothian

We have been 3 times since 2010. The price increases per trip have got too much for us to go again anytime soon. I appreciate you cander in this letter "Dad". Thank you for speaking up for the little guys that the Disney big wigs have forgotten about. To charge for the Extra Magic Hours is not morally right. We may look at other attractions in the Orlando area for our next visit...like Universal Studios.

Mar 25, 2016
Time for Bob to go.
by: Anonymous

Hey Bob remember us common folk with stock can unite again and vote you out. We did it before.

Mar 25, 2016
More rants
by: Eric Sanchez

To ad to this negativity. I myself was handed a rediculous dose of Disney gluttony this year. For the past 8 years I have purchased a September bounceback offer for free dining. This is the offer in which sept.

To oct. Guests participating in free dining while staying in a Disney resorts can look in the back of thier rooms hotel guide and find a pin code that grandfathers you into free dining next year IF you book while still checked into the room. I do not park hop.

However to participate in the bounceback this year, You had to purchase a premium ticket for everyone staying in the room for a 4 day minimum. I dont need to mention how much difference there is between a base ticket and a premium one. I called all the way up the Guest Relations food chain and was met with alot of Im sorrys. Its getting VERY OLD, VERY FAST.

Not to mention, by staying on property you get the "privaledge" of Magic Hours". Something apparently anyone can purchase now if one can afford it. A Disney vacation is quicly becoming an upper middleclass or higher vacation which sickens me since Walt intended it for EVERYONE!! Universal did such a good job with Harry Potter, but they are socking it to people by charging for a park hopper just to get on Hogwarts Express to see both sections. A practice that apparently Disney sees favor in.

This article is correct. I have been on property Every year since I was 4 and Im 45. The cost have skyrocketed. Its like Bob Iger to inflation is like Michael Eisner was to gimmicks. Disney itself is amazing. But I shouldnt have to spend more than a good used car to go every year. Hope my rant wasnt too long.

Mar 25, 2016
Well Said!
by: Beth

Thank you for writing exactly what I am thinking!
Those $4 that people paid "in the beginning" is now equivalent to $35 with inflation factored in. Yes, there is much more in the parks now and wages/ cost of living is radically different but the continued raising of prices especially over the last 5 years is ridiculous. Just once, I would love for Disney execs to put patrons ahead of stockholders. And the excuse about Shanghai - pass the costs on to THAT park. Don't punish everyone for poor foresight.

Now carving out premium experiences is whittling down the day. Sad.

If the resort fees come along as rumored - we're out.

Mar 25, 2016
Well Said
by: r4him

Well said Disney Dad! As a huge fan of everything Disney I am more disappointed that after this last trip I won't tolerate Bob or the greed of Disney any longer! I am sad that as a partaker of Disney fun I can no longer stand to burn my hard earned money while being gouged by a company that has trampled the little guy! Walts vision has been lead a stray by shotty mgmt, and no moral value! What used to be fun and somewhat reasonable as a family trip has been twisted to expense people to death. Thanks to Disneys current leadership screwing up on their Asian project that is far behind, the original American parks and those that support them are set To pay for their mistake! Make no mistake their record breaking "profits", attendance, & revenue are being funneled to clean up and catch up on their misuse of money and bad investments. Stock holders sit fat and happy at the moment, but their day of recconing is coming, and I hope it hurts! Thanks for my past memories Disney!

A Former Customer

Mar 25, 2016
Dad nails it on the head
by: Pat

I'll rent my DVC points and go see the USA for a lot cheaper than what a family of 4 will cost me at Disney. Everyone, Don't forget that survey that was out there recently about paying for DME, Resort Fees,FP, MB and who knows what else. It is out of hand. Shame this is not the Disney we all have loved. Now its Nickel and Dime the Guest.

Mar 25, 2016
by: rollie

I think the best way to get the message across to any business is- stop supporting them, including Disney. The only way to get through to these entities would be to cut off their source of revenue. This includes auto manufacturers. Stop buying heir products and see what happens.

Mar 25, 2016
Well Said
by: Bette

Thanks "Dad"
I have read your articles for a long time and this one expresses what I have been thinking. I just recently moved to FL and was excited to use the park more but now as prices increases I may need to rethink my plan.
Thanks for voicing the concerns for us "real" people.

Mar 25, 2016
I agree
by: Anonymous

I tottle agree with you. I can not afford to go at this time. But I was hopping in the future but the prices still keeping going up and my income keeps going down. We need change. Please listen to all of us. Thank you, Fawn

Mar 25, 2016
Great Rant
by: ScotttNWDW

Let's also not forget that despite all the revenues being through the roof and all, the Cast Members working at WDW are having their hours cut to 32-38 hours per week, all the while the hotels are at close to 100% occupancy. Many of these cast members don't even make enough money to pay rent every month without working overtime, now they are being cut to less than 40 hours a week. At the same time though management wants the same level of service.

Mar 25, 2016
visiting disney world
by: lorraine

we will still go to Disney World, but we will buy less souveners and just buy burgers and fries or pizza to eat, and share. You can get extra money from those who would like to go to the parks earlier, ( its ok with me) and those that want to stay extra hours at night, ( that's also ok with me) . We will just buget our money better, maybe if we get there in September this year we will pay for the Halloween party, that was really fun last year.

As far as the other things go, we'll sleep in a bit longer, and leave the park earlier and have a nice dinner and relax the rest of the evening. Not much of a big deal to me until the prices of tickets and hotels raise up even more than they are now

Mar 25, 2016
DW is losing its magic.
by: Anonymous

I agree with Carl (Dad) Trent 150%. You are going to drive the average person away.

Oh yes and by the way We were just there the beginning of March. You may also want to concentrate on paying your CM's and Housekeeping more money so they have a higher morale going. We went on the Haunted Mansion ride two days in a row and both times i saw a mess the somehow didn't want to get cleaned up. I'm sure if i saw it many others did too and i'm sure the CM's saw it as well. So why it didn't get cleaned up? i'll never know.

I would have myself by the 2nd day but if you have ever been on the ride you would know. So i think before you decide to make all these other changes and driving the costs up, concentrate on bringing the magic back. I agree Walt wouldn't be just rolling in his grave, he would be turning into a tornado by now. Please bring the magic back.

Mar 25, 2016
Nicely Stated
by: Barbara

Amen. I couldn't have said it any better myself. Disney is not a place for the commoners anymore. It makes me sad that we have given up our annual passes just because it wasn't magical anymore. I just hope Disney wakes up soon before there is no magic left to revive.

Mar 25, 2016
by: Anonymous

we used to go twice a year ,then once a year seems like forever but this year we decided to forget it ,it's become just to expensive and we even camp ,didn't used to but we do now since we have a motorhome and the campground is beautiful . The campground may be beautiful but has still become very expensive with the price of tickets and food plans going up all the time . The average person hasn't seen enough increases in their paycheck to keep up with Disney. Looking for other places.

Mar 25, 2016
I couldn't agree more!!
by: Dave

Thanks for saying what I want to say. Been going to Disney World since our honeymoon in 1979. The place isn't what it used to be and the cost continues to skyrocket. While we usually go several times a year, we are starting to look for alternatives. Disney World today just isn't the special place anymore. Maybe we should all write to Bob and let him know just how displeased we are. That's what happens when there is no longer Disney family influence any longer.

Mar 25, 2016
Well said!
by: Tracey

Thank you!! I whole heartedly agree and it saddens me to think that my kids will not be able to afford to bring their own children to the Most Magical Place on Earth.

Mar 25, 2016
by: Matthew


But the message is on point.

Mar 25, 2016
by: Anonymous

Bob Iger's money grabbing is killing the Disney dream.

Mar 25, 2016
Thanks-good read
by: Moustastical

Thank you for eloquently breaking down the facts and the dirty bumpy road that Disney is traveling. I'm afraid too that they will just have to fall before they will realize they are ruining or have ruined the Disney Brand. They have skated on thin ice before but this time they are putting themselves into this position. I don't understand the direction they are headed but only time will tell.

Mar 25, 2016
enough is enough
by: Anonymous

They keep taking away and rasing the prices and costs. The same goes for the cruise and DVC.

It's not that I can't afford it, but I'm getting to the point of not wanting to afford it. It's almost to the point of a waste of money.

They seriously better rethink when people like myself who are deep in the DVC ,go on a cruise a year and to WDW a couple times a year say enough is enough.

Mar 25, 2016
by: Craig

I love taking my family to Disney and have been there every year almost and stay on site and have had excellent vacations every year. The price increases are ridiculous and have made us start doing new places and destinations. probably not going back to Disney for a long time. but will I go back if I can stay on property for 10 days and pay what I did 10 years ago then the answer is definitely yes

Mar 25, 2016
Sadness abounds as disney empties my wallet
by: Anonymous

With true sadness I had to cancel my long awaited disney world trip in lieu of a visit to sea world and aquatica because of the increase in price. The changes in the free dining promotion requin a park hopper thus adding over $600 to my trip was a sign if bad things to come. I sincerely hope there are more frequent discounts to help the "little guy" achieve the opportunity to see walt's dream in real life.

Mar 25, 2016
Don't just rant
by: E-ticket-lizabeth

Great page, but please, let's not just rant. Let's email and call Disney. ALL OF US. Believe it or not, they listen, or they used to. Remember Early Entry? They killed it. This was way back in the time of newsgroups only, but some friends & I on RADP and other sites started a campaign to contact Disney about how stupid it was to take away a major perk for staying on-site.

Within 6 months, I got a call from a CM saying that Disney was now going to EXPAND the EE program, add nights, and call it Extra Magic Hours. Yes, they did that in response to all of us complaining. Politely, but persistently, complaining. PLEASE, people, contact Disney EVERY SINGLE TIME they do something that seems unmagical to you, something that seems against Walt's dream. If enough of us tell them we hate it, they might, just might listen. I'm mad, too, but I email them. You should too. To infinity, and beyond, with the contacts!

Mar 25, 2016
"value" resort
by: Eric J

A friend of mine is going up in June and he got the Waldorf Astoria in Orlando for less than any Value Resort quote from Disney. That's crazy right there.

Mar 25, 2016
Sad day
by: Sheila

Dad, thanks for saying what so many Disney fans are thinking. We paid our deposit for our trip in December but keeping an open mind to other options ifs things keep trending the way are trending at Disney. They definitely need to worry about the other 99% that budget all year to have that wonderful Disney vacation. Not writing them off yet cause we love the magic of Disney and being in the Disney bubble once a year but I fear there will not be enough pixie dust to make these changes acceptable.

Mar 25, 2016
by: Mike H.

I heard that this year it is 175 dollars per point to get dvc... What happened there?

Mar 25, 2016
your right
by: patrout

I agree with dad. Disney ceo is only worried about lineing his own pockets. and does not care about the real people who keep that place running. like the workers, I mean the American workers who have to pay taxes, not all of the illegals and foriegain help that they sneak in. and also all the working class that really keep Disney in buissness. Disney is now digging their own grave and boy is it getting deeper by the day.

Mar 25, 2016
Disappointed in Disney
by: Susan Palmer

My sentiments exactly! My family planned to return to WDW in early 2018 ( it would take that long to save up for the trip)...As things now stand and based on all Disney's increases & add-on, there is a very real possibility we will have to to elsewhere :(

Mar 25, 2016
Well Said!
by: Anonymous

Extremely well said! It is SO sad and discouraging. We travel from far to go to WDW every year...NO more. We also are switching to Universal and other travel opportunities. Prices have become absurd and they keep sending the message that they don't care each time they raise prices. Thank you for your honest and well-needed vent!

Mar 25, 2016
by: Jill

Thanks for the rant Dad! I hope someone's listening! I also fear this is only the beginning!

Mar 25, 2016
So True
by: Anonymous

Your rant is right on. You forgot to mention the new parking policy where for $15 extra, on top of the $20 to park already, guests can park up front in the parking lot so they don't have to walk as far. my daughter works in the entertainment department and hasn't had a raise in three years. The only raise she even received was after 60 days of employment. It's the employees that make Disney special and they haven't seen one cent of all these revenue increases. Employees have been told that these revenue increases and employee cutbacks are to subsidize Shanghai Disney.

Mar 25, 2016
Well said!!!!!
by: Keith White

On point and well written.

Mar 25, 2016
I agree
by: Anonymous

I agree. I love Disney but i am beginning to also look elsewhere. I have already started running races outside disney and have found them fun and 1/4 the orice for more included. So i guess vacations will be next. The experience to make memories with my family is starting to head elsewhere.

Mar 25, 2016
by: Anonymous

Thanks for saying what I am sure the majority of us have been thinking. Please share any response you receive. I would love to hear that.

Mar 25, 2016
Open letter
by: Pati Butler

Thanks, Carl. Absolute truth!

Mar 25, 2016
Disney & politics
by: Pop

Mr Iger, please say that one individual made the "Georgia" threat and was not acting wisely or with corporate approval. Please say that wasn't a company threat.

Mar 25, 2016
Do hope Bob reads this
by: Jim

I honestly hate that I have to agree with everything you said. I will still take a trip down there but we've stopped staying on property and we've shortened how many days we visit parks. I'm not less of a Disney fanatic, just have to watch my $'s.

Mar 25, 2016
What is the alternative?
by: Anonymous

I'm not disagreeing with you; as a DVC member and regular Disney guest, I'm certainly not happy with the ever-increasing cost of a Disney vacation. BUT...

The WDW resort can accommodate a finite number of people. Period. They can't expand and contract the parks to adjust to increasing crowds and seasonal variation. Adjusting the cost is one way to control demand. Decreasing quality would be another way to decrease demand, but I think we can all agree that we don't want that. They already have a first-come first-served system in place, so I don't know what else they can do there.

So the question is...what else would you have them do to manage the demand for their product to ensure that they can still deliver that product at the acceptable level of quality that their customers expect?

Mar 25, 2016
Very well said..
by: Alicia

That is pretty much exactly how I felt at a recent trip to Disneyworld. As foreign tourists in designer sweat suits shoved us out of their way (this is LITERAL not colorful wording) the magic evaporated pretty fast. Speaking only for myself it will be a long time before I spend that much money for a vacation where my time was so not valued and my money obviously not enough. I really like cruising too bad I can't afford Disney. I am not a trend setter but Buh Bye Disney.

Mar 25, 2016
non expiration tickets
by: Scott

so in 2006 my wife and I bought 2-10 day non exp park hopper tickets. cost $820 for both (42 a day) flash forward to 2013, bought 1 10 day non expiration ticket for my son (under 10) $800. when we go to to Central FL to see family we visit a park for one day, when the tickets run out, we will be priced out of visiting WDW. I am a big fan! I worked at WDW while in College. Fun while it lasts.. :(

Mar 25, 2016
by: Anonymous


Mar 25, 2016
Complete Agreement
by: Barbara Meade

I agree that Disney seems to be changing into something for the 1%. I scrimp and save to afford my WDW vacations and sometimes it's years before I can go back. To see the most Magical Place on Earth transforming into something only the wealthy can afford to is very sad. If Disney the Company isn't carefull and puts a stop to their money grubbing ways they'll lose the people that dearly love them.

Mar 25, 2016
Couldn't have said it better
by: krazykat_randi

I have to agree with you. It is becoming just so expensive to do anything at WDW. Universal is looking great to us these days, and in fact, that is where we are going next year. What was expensive but doable 10 years ago, is out of our price range now. I also find Disney becoming embroiled in politics which I find very distasteful - they're a theme park for heavens sake!
I am very disappointed in Disney. They are slowly becoming a park for just the rich, which is so sad. Disney has been a part of my life since I was a little kid.

Mar 25, 2016
Well said
by: Anonymous

When is enough enough???

Mar 24, 2016
Open Letter
by: Kathy

Thanks Dad for saying what we all are feeling, especially DVC members who have been faithful to the Disney brand and make a few trips a year to what is supposed to be a magical and affordable experience for their families. When will our opinions count?!?

Mar 24, 2016
Keep the faith Carl.
by: Dan C

Great rant Carl, but I fear that this is just the beginning. Things will get far worse before clearer minds prevail.

Keep the faith that Walt's ghost will eventually make it's presence felt.

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