WARNING!!! RANT ALERT!!! RANT ALERT!!!!
We all know that the crowds at the DL Resort has been steadily increasing over the last couple of years, to the point where Disneyland reaches capacity and must be closed, and that even the parking gets filled to capacity. The parking sucks enough as it is, and now they're going to lose a chunk of it when they start expanding on DCA. But with the free on your birthday, and the increase of annual pass sales, the crowd levels have been getting really high and uncomfortable for some people.
And now it appears, that things are about to get even worse, if Disney does make an even BIGGER mistake, to go along with all the other recent blunders.
So I'm at the DL Resort today, not to take part in the Gumball Rally (which looked really fun btw), but to roam the parks while my wife Becka-Lynn acted as one of the spotters. I never got any interest in the rally, nor did I get a team. But it looked interesting and if I'm around (and a passholder) next year, I just might try out for it. Felt like I ran the rally with the way my feet are screaming right now.
Anyways, during my tour around the parks, I went into DCA to ride Toy Story Mania. I went into the single rider line, because it's supposed to be faster, right? The guy in front of me thought the same thing. The thing was, when the guests in the regular queue would come up to the boarding area, they'd either be an even numbered group or if there were any odd numbers, the cast member doing the loading would ask them if they'd like to have a single rider join them on the ride. Most of them would say no. But after having this process explained to me by our friendly neighborhood photographer Darkbeer (awesome guy by the way - really cool to talk to. Kind of intimidating, "tough guy" look IMO , but he's a kitten! ) He stated to me that awhile back, a father of 2 kids protested having a single rider ride with one of his kids so that's why CM's have to ask guests if they want a single rider with them. So when there are those that say no, the SR's have to wait. We were only in line for about 20 minutes, but when the guy in front of me asked the other cast member about this, and he was explaining about having to ask guests to let a SR with them, I said they really need to put a FastPass on this ride.
He then proceeded to tell me that Disney is going to be getting rid of the FastPass systems on ALL rides, within the next few years. And that TS was the first new ride to not have one. He stated something along the lines of that when a ride has a FastPass running on it, their ride count is a lot lower than it would be if they didn't have FP running on it. As I was getting on the ride, I flat out told him that if Disney does this, it's going to piss off a lot of guests. He reply was something like "Oh well!" This pretty much tells me that Disney is fast becoming the corporate monster, caring less about families and fun, and being more focused on profit.
I was going to go to Guest Relations at the entrance to ask about this. But before getting there, I passed by Darkbeer near the front of the park where they have the Food & Wine Festival tent, and he was taking pictures for the Gumball Rally. I talked to him for a few, like I said earlier he's an awesome guy, and I asked him about what I was told about the FP. He said he hasn't heard anything about them removing it, only about it being "tweaked" and that he thought that when the Mermaid ride opens, it may get FP and that another ride would lose it (like Mullholland Madness). And he said that I basically heard a rumor. Though he said for me not to waste my time at GR to ask about it, I went anyways to try to hear if there was any truth to the rumor. The lady in there simply said she hasn't heard anything like that, so I left it at that and just left.
Rumor or not, I wanted to post it on here, either for damage control, or to start the proverbial wildfire. I don't know about any of you, but I honestly feel that if Disney really does remove the FP from all of their rides that have it, like California Screamin or Space Mountain, they will be making a really BIG mistake!! It is a really convenient advantage for those that visit the park on a busy day, ESPECIALLY those non-annual passholder/multi day pass guests that come for just one day out of 1 to 3+ years to spend the day at the parks. If FP is removed, it would force them to spend the majority of their day waiting in 2 hour lines, which also has to be spent for (getting in the parking structure, getting in the park, walking from point A to point B, watching any shows they want to see, oh and of course EATING!! AND YOU KNOW THAT LINES ARE BAD, WHEN THERE IS A LINE JUST TO GET A FASPASS FOR SPACE MOUNTAIN!!! UGH!!) And we all know that with FP running, the line for Space Mountain is on average 60 to 75 minutes. If FP is removed, that line will go up to 2 hours+. Or guests will just stop coming. A lot of people don't go to the park because it's always so crowded. Granted, the crowd levels kind of disprove that theory. And that's because they currently have the convenience of FastPass. It's because of this, that people still go despite the high level of crowds. But even with that, when people go, while they're at the parks, they're complaining about the crowds and bickering with each other at the end of the night while trying to get on the trams. It's because of Fastpass that makes this headache a little more tolerable, allowing guests to get a few more rides in before they have to leave for home.
If this is simply just a rumor, and there is no truth to it and it will never happen, then that's great. No harm, no foul. But if it's more than just a rumor, if there is some truth to it, then I think that Disney fans everywhere should be ready to take a stand against it. (The guy mentioned the parks in Florida, so they could be doing it there, or are planning on it.) So that's why I'm posting this, to get the word out.
Because what it's all going to boil down to, is that Disney wants to care less about the little man, and care more about getting more bang for their buck. They want to up the sales for their annual passes and 2/3 day passes, trying to convince guests to visit for more than just one day. It just shows me that they care less about the fans, and more about the Benjamins.