I was thinking about the current state of affairs while at work today. I had CNN online in one tab, which cited how high oil is currently trading. I had MSN in another tab, citing how the economy is currently stalling. My travel was in another thread as I looked into booking a future business trip. And on #4 was Micechat which was discussing everything from the lack of tourists, to the current surplus of CM's. The interesting thing is that this is all tied together, and I am curious how everything will work out.
Take for example CM's. A lot of CM's are not local, so they have to commute to work. Some carpool, or take a train, or bus, but a majority of them are single drivers who commute almost every day to work. The economy is slowing down, which means less jobs. So Disney has seen it's turnover plummet and it's CM ranks swell as people attempt to keep the jobs they have. At the same time Disney pay can not keep up with the rising cost of gas, and many find themselves paying to work their jobs. With less in a CM's pocket they either seek out a second job, which may or may not solve the problem, or look for a better job, or a more local one. So while the economy overall may be slowing and Disney's ranks are full right now, the reality is this might change as gas goes up.
At the same time the park is feeling the effects of this slowdown. The various industries that supply the park have been raising their prices, as everything now costs more to produce. Tourists are cutting back on their vacations, or canceling them all together as airlines charge more, and in some cases it is even money whether you fly or drive. The weak American dollar is attractive to International tourists, but the airline tickets, frequent cancellations, and overall headaches make many think twice.
When people comment on how empty the park is, it's no wonder. Many right now are trying to keep their jobs, or find better ones. Many more can not afford to travel, and even those working and managing the park are starting to feel the pinch. I am curious how all of this will play out. I have no doubt eventually it will work itself out and Disneyland is definitely in a much better position to weather the storm. I am wondering if any on here remember the gas crunch of the 70's, or more specifically how Disneyland weathered that storm.