Twitter reacts to Disney CEO’s comments about limiting entry for a ‘great experience’

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Disney CEO Bob Chapek took part in a Wall Street Journal live stream yesterday to answer questions about the direction of the Walt Disney Company. During the interview, Chapek was asked about how Disney deals with “diehard” crowds and fans.

WSJ-“You mentioned Disney’s passionate fanbase… they go online, they have forums, they debate your prices. Some love it. Some hate it. What is the course of action to continue to manage it as you have done, but without alienating these customers, these unconditional?

To which Bob Chapek replied:

“We want to ensure a great customer experience no matter when people come. If they come on the second Tuesday of September, we want them to have a great customer experience. Maybe it wouldn’t have been so difficult in the past. But if they come the day after Thanksgiving, we also want to guarantee that they will have a great experience.

How? By raising prices and making planning so convoluted that you need a vacation while on vacation? Disney is raising prices but seems to be packing more and more people into the parks, which is a win-win for them, but not for the guest experience.

Also, how can he “guarantee” this? Disney set it up in such a way that people have to pay more money to potentially get a better experience. How is that a guarantee for those who can’t or won’t spend the extra money?

He continued:

The people who actually enter the park that day. We want them to have a great experience. That no matter what day you come, you are guaranteed to have this magical experience that creates magical memories that last a lifetime.

Again, it’s not as magical as it used to be. It’s much more stressful, crowded and expensive. I also found his comment interesting about the fan signs saying “People who actually come to the park that day” meaning those who are there and not those who talk about it online.

It explains how you should manage demand by controlling how many people you let in or turning them away. Instead of a family from Denver, this time it uses a family from Seattle.

However, one of the biggest complaints I’ve heard is overcrowding in the parks. Disney said they raise prices to control demand, then allow the same or more people at higher prices. What the reservation system does is limit the number of guests who can enter based on their passes. By limiting the number of annual pass holders, it frees up more room for customers who pay more per day. Make profits higher.

Maximizing shareholder value is what he really cares about. The way to do this is to increase profits. It’s not about customer experience, it’s about shareholder value.

Scott Gustin on Twitter posted some of the quotes from the interview.

Here is Twitter’s reaction:

Yes this!

It’s true. People will buy tickets and not have park reservations and be told too bad when they get there!

That’s what I’m talking about. It keeps saying it “guarantees the best experience” when it doesn’t.

I also mentioned this before. Disney has had limited capacity in the past and checks different “groups” for availability of park pass reservations, then says demand is so high they can charge more. It always seemed a bit suspicious to me.

The comments follow.

Disney Parks fans are turning. Maybe that’s why Disney is desperately trying to fill rooms and is offering multiple discounts for both Christmas 2022 and four months of 2023! They even posted a post on the Disney Parks Blog titled 3 Ways to Save on Your Next Walt Disney World Stay persuade people to book.

What do you think of what Chapek said? Comment and let us know!

Pirates & Princesses (PNP) is an independent, fan-powered news blog that covers Disney and Universal theme parks, themed entertainment, and related pop culture from a consumer perspective. The opinions expressed by our contributors do not necessarily reflect the views of PNP, its publishers, affiliates, sponsors or advertisers. PNP is an unofficial source of information and has no connection with The Walt Disney Company, NBCUniversal or any other business we can cover.

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