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  1. #1

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    Question Is The D23 Expo Worth The Admission Price?

    I've never attended the D23 expo and I would love to go but is it worth the money? Is a one day pass enough or should one go for the 3 day? What kind of events do they have? Can you spend a whole day in there? To those who have gone, how was your experience? Thanks!

  2. #2

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    Re: Is The D23 Expo Worth The Admission Price?

    In short answer no but if you love disney then yes! This thread should be moved too D23 discussions

  3. #3

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    Re: Is The D23 Expo Worth The Admission Price?

    I went to the D23 Expo in 2011 and absolutely LOVED it. I read tons and tons of negative experiences; people complaining about waiting in lines... not being able to see the things they wanted to see... horrible organization on the part of Disney... blah blah blah. Having never attended any type of convention before, I went into it with very little expectations. I attended all 3 days with my Mom and two amazing friends (all of us Disney fanatics) - we were there at about 6:30am each day to wait in line (all of us D23 members... so we were waiting in the "get in early" line) breakfast/snacks in tow, with a game plan. We had the schedule, so we knew each morning if we were heading to line up for a presentation, or if we wanted to get in line for the stores (yes... you have to line up for the stores!). We were able to see every single panel/presentation that we wanted to see... Friday we saw Disney Legends, The Making of the Little Mermaid, It's a Small World (amazing), Voices of the Parks (amazing), and we got to meet Dave Smith. Saturday we split up and some of us saw the Inside Walt Disney Studios presentation, Once Upon a Time panel, Music of Pixar panel, and Legends of Walt Disney Imagineering. Sunday, we split up and some of us saw the Marvel presentation, the art of Brave, and the Vintage Disneyland and Walt Disney World presentation. If you look at the 2011 schedule, you will see that we managed to experience quite a bit! We also managed to experience all of the things that were offered on the main floor - in terms of the various stores and exhibits. Did we wait in lines? YES! We spent MOST of our time waiting in lines. But that was some of the most memorable time I spent there! I was with people I loved, who also loved Disney. We were able to amuse ourselves and have fun, while sitting on the floor waiting to experience AMAZING things (Like Richard Sherman singing "It's a Small World" while playing a casio-keyboard...)

    I think the trick is to study the schedule, pick and choose the things that really matter to you, and go and get in line!

  4. #4

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    Re: Is The D23 Expo Worth The Admission Price?

    i went to the first d23 event and it wasn't that great....barely anything to see and do....it was pretty empty....

    some disney booths and there was a sellers area with a ton of junk and overpriced items...

    some disney booths were poorly staffed...the staff members were not interactive...they spent the majority of the time chatting away on their cell phones or to other staff

    i did meet john lasseter and he signed my program and took a few pics with us....i think that was the only highlight though


    if you live close by, then i recommend at least checking it out for a day or two.....it is better to go and see what it is all about then not go....

  5. #5

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    Re: Is The D23 Expo Worth The Admission Price?

    i'm going for one day this year as a "test drive". I'm really going for Disneyland/DCA combo but this is a perk I just couldn't pass up. I skipped the first 2 conventions and I too have heard all the horror stories. I am now a D23 member and plan on getting in the early entry line EARLY EARLY to get in to see at least one big show. Be part of the experience but I've heard if I take my camera and phone that they will take it away and then I'll have to wait in another line to get them back. I will most likely give my phone and camera to my party so I can get in and out without issue.

    I really want to get in the discounted Mickey's of Glendale store and get some discounted merchandise and I hear there's a line for that right when they let people in early to get in lines for the stores.

    I mostly plan on looking at exhibits, touring the booths, getting free swag, pin trading and checking out the area where people are selling their own Disney stuff. I hope hope the day I chose to go is the day of the Disney Parks panel where they announce all the big items.

    If my one day goes as smoothly as I like it to be I will definitely plan a trip for the next expo which if you think about it will fall during the 60TH ANNIVERSARY OF DISNEYLAND. Now THAT will be the expo to go to out of them all!
    Micoofy Duck
    Disney Theme Park Fan #4,584,376
    http://www.micoofy.com



  6. #6

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    Re: Is The D23 Expo Worth The Admission Price?

    Quote Originally Posted by taylorear View Post
    I went to the D23 Expo in 2011 and absolutely LOVED it. I read tons and tons of negative experiences; people complaining about waiting in lines... not being able to see the things they wanted to see... horrible organization on the part of Disney... blah blah blah. Having never attended any type of convention before, I went into it with very little expectations. I attended all 3 days with my Mom and two amazing friends (all of us Disney fanatics) - we were there at about 6:30am each day to wait in line (all of us D23 members... so we were waiting in the "get in early" line) breakfast/snacks in tow, with a game plan. We had the schedule, so we knew each morning if we were heading to line up for a presentation, or if we wanted to get in line for the stores (yes... you have to line up for the stores!). We were able to see every single panel/presentation that we wanted to see... Friday we saw Disney Legends, The Making of the Little Mermaid, It's a Small World (amazing), Voices of the Parks (amazing), and we got to meet Dave Smith. Saturday we split up and some of us saw the Inside Walt Disney Studios presentation, Once Upon a Time panel, Music of Pixar panel, and Legends of Walt Disney Imagineering. Sunday, we split up and some of us saw the Marvel presentation, the art of Brave, and the Vintage Disneyland and Walt Disney World presentation. If you look at the 2011 schedule, you will see that we managed to experience quite a bit! We also managed to experience all of the things that were offered on the main floor - in terms of the various stores and exhibits. Did we wait in lines? YES! We spent MOST of our time waiting in lines. But that was some of the most memorable time I spent there! I was with people I loved, who also loved Disney. We were able to amuse ourselves and have fun, while sitting on the floor waiting to experience AMAZING things (Like Richard Sherman singing "It's a Small World" while playing a casio-keyboard...)

    I think the trick is to study the schedule, pick and choose the things that really matter to you, and go and get in line!
    And thank you for this post. This is getting me excited for my first ever D23 expo!!! Wish I stood in line behind you guys 'cause you seem super fun and always seeing the positive in life!
    Micoofy Duck
    Disney Theme Park Fan #4,584,376
    http://www.micoofy.com



  7. #7

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    Re: Is The D23 Expo Worth The Admission Price?

    Quote Originally Posted by Micoofy Duck View Post
    And thank you for this post. This is getting me excited for my first ever D23 expo!!! Wish I stood in line behind you guys 'cause you seem super fun and always seeing the positive in life!
    It's super fun! The last day when we were waiting in like for the Vintage Disney presentation we started cracking ourselves up, imagining what people would do if the presentation was actually just Tony Baxter popping in the Walt Disney Treasure's Disneyland USA DVD...

    Regarding your other post about the cameras not being allowed - when I was there in 2011 there was only 1 or 2 panels/presentations that you could not have a camera and they were both the HUGE main presentations that "revealed" some of the new announcements for Marvel and other upcoming Park announcements. At every single other panel we were able to take in cameras and small digital video cameras. I have some amazing footage of Richard Sherman singing, as well as some great pictures from the Disney Legends presentation!

  8. #8

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    Re: Is The D23 Expo Worth The Admission Price?

    I have been to both Expos and the experience has been mixed. Not that I didn't enjoy it but the long lines for some things really did me in.
    In 2009, I only went one day. BIG mistake. My friend and I went to the Muppets panel (I am crazy for all things Muppet), and we waited over two hours to get photos with the real Gonzo, Fozzie, and Pepe. Unfortunately we missed most of the exhibits and seller's booths because of this. The day ended well because we were able to see both Toy Story films in 3-D that evening.
    In 2011, i went all three days on CM discounted tickets. Friday went well, Saturday I missed a lot because I waited in line so my friend and I could see the Lion King in 3-D for about five hours before the screening ( I view it as payback to the Muppets.) ,Sunday was OK, but I was only able to get into one panel.
    This year I bought D23 three day passes. I don't know if it will help me get into more panels, but it's worth a shot.
    I would not recommend going just one day. There is a lot to see and sometimes the lines to see exhibits or to buy stuff are huge. They can really throw a monkey wrench in your plans.
    The Mickey's of Glendale annex was great. There were lines, but the store was well organized and people got in and out quickly. The Archives store I hope will have learned to ticket their merchandise with barcodes- it was a nightmare in 2011 everything had to be looked up in a barcode book. It took me over an hour and a half to check out and I missed the one panel I had wanted to see that day.
    Overall the convention is a lot of fun. You get to be around people who love Disney as much as you do. Lots to buy too. Make sure you have enough money.

  9. #9

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    Re: Is The D23 Expo Worth The Admission Price?

    Is it safe to say if you aren't interested in the panels or presentations then you can save a lot of waiting on line time? We are mostly interested in the displays and some of the merch. Any thoughts?

  10. #10

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    Re: Is The D23 Expo Worth The Admission Price?

    Quote Originally Posted by bkeyes19 View Post
    Is it safe to say if you aren't interested in the panels or presentations then you can save a lot of waiting on line time? We are mostly interested in the displays and some of the merch. Any thoughts?
    Possibly. Although the Archives exhibit is very popular and it's best to get there early for that. The Imagineering exhibit was large and the only line I experienced there was to test out a new audio animatronic exhibit.
    The "Dream Store" tends to get long lines but it usually goes smoothly. IMO though the stuff in the "Dream Store" was nothing special. A lot of it was available at the World of Disney and the theme parks. Best shop was the Mickey's of Glendale annex.

  11. #11

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    Re: Is The D23 Expo Worth The Admission Price?

    Quote Originally Posted by bkeyes19 View Post
    Is it safe to say if you aren't interested in the panels or presentations then you can save a lot of waiting on line time? We are mostly interested in the displays and some of the merch. Any thoughts?
    I think it depends on what you consider to be a long wait-time... The longest we waited to get into a store/display was probably 25-30 minutes. I would say the best strategy would be to look at when the biggest/most popular panels are being held, and then try to hit the stores/displays at those times. The thing is... it's a convention - waiting in lines is part of the deal. I am willing to wait in line for an hour, to ride Peter Pan's Flight (something I have ridden probably over 50 times) because I love it. For me, waiting in line for however-long, for a once-in-a-lifetime experience is worth it. Especially if you are with people who you enjoy being with!

  12. #12

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    Re: Is The D23 Expo Worth The Admission Price?

    Is the D23 Expo worth the admission price? Well, it might be. Then again, it might not.

    I've been to both the 2009 & 2011 Expos -- and the difference between them was significant. Even though the 2009 was the first Expo, it was far better than the second. The different parts of the Disney Company really seemed to get behind the Expo, and most contributed good, interesting exhibits and events. The Parks Exhibit, for example, was wonderful -- showing us lots of designs/models for new attractions in the various Parks. (I probably spent a good hour or so in there, and went back a day later for a closer look at some things.)

    In 2011, however, everything seemed much more slapdash and half-assed. For example, the Parks exhibit, that had been so interesting at the Expo before, seemed to contain a fraction of the stuff. (I was in & out of there in maybe 15 minutes and didn't bother going back.)

    Strangely, the overall running of the event seemed smoother at the first Expo, too. Lines weren't as ridiculously long -- nor as chaotically organized. And don't get me started on the whole camera thing. Having had to check in my phone at one or two of the events at the first Expo, I decided to leave it in the hotel at the second. That did not stop them from trying to confiscate my Nook ebook reader -- which doesn't even have a camera!

    With all that said, I am going again this year. But this time, it's make-or-break. If it's improved from the last one, then I'll be back. If it's more of the same (or a further downgraded experience) then I won't.

  13. #13

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    Re: Is The D23 Expo Worth The Admission Price?

    Quote Originally Posted by PinokeFan View Post
    In 2011, however, everything seemed much more slapdash and half-assed. For example, the Parks exhibit, that had been so interesting at the Expo before, seemed to contain a fraction of the stuff. (I was in & out of there in maybe 15 minutes and didn't bother going back.)
    If you were disappointed with the last Expo, then you may be even mores with the next. As they don't have any models of new attractions that they are willing to share (everything Shanghai has been shipped there, nothing Avatar being released, no Star Wars, No Marvel).

    Of course, that's just the Parks & Resorts portion. Whether the other segments have anything, or are enthusiastic enough to put in an effort, is uncertain.

    Really depends on what people are actually looking to glean form the Expo overall. There will probably be SOMETHING of interest for most people. But whether it's enough to validate the cost is up to each individual.

  14. #14

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    Re: Is The D23 Expo Worth The Admission Price?

    Thanks for the feedback on the lines. The part I left out is that we will have our two year with us in the morning. He tends to make a 30 minute wait more difficult.

  15. #15

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    Re: Is The D23 Expo Worth The Admission Price?

    ^If you have one, bring an iPad or other device loaded with his favorite shows or apps. I would also bring some of his favorite snacks too. That might help!

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