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  1. #1

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    Could WDW introduce Seasonal Ticket Prices?

    If theme parks were airlines, the price of admission to the Magic Kingdom might vary depending on how far in advance you bought the ticket, whether you wanted to go on a Tuesday or a Saturday, and if your visit happened to fall during the high-demand season around Christmas.Though airfare-style pricing is catching on in other industries, it has been used sparingly so far in Central Florida, with theme parks typically offering it only for special events, such as Disney's Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party and Universal's Halloween Horror Nights.
    But the idea of boosting revenue with such dynamic pricing and other types of variable-ticket systems has been getting some attention. Last week, for example, the topic drew scores of park operators to a panel discussion in Orlando during the annual meeting of the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions, the industry's largest trade group.
    "Day-of-the-week pricing, where you price cheaper during the week and more expensive on the weekends, is extremely uncommon. I think there's a gold mine right there," said Martin Lewison, an assistant professor atFarmingdale State College in New York who studies attraction pricing.
    Theme Park Pricing: Will dynamic airline-style pricing take hold in theme parks? - OrlandoSentinel.com
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  2. #2

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    Re: Could WDW introduce Seasonal Ticket Prices?

    To me this reads a lot like something those amusement park owners back in the 50s would have told Walt about the right way to run a park; the kind of helpful advice he specifically ignored when he was figuring out how to revolutionize the business. It's such a blatant money grab that even if all the parks did it any profits this pricing structure would generate would likely be offset by the further decline in reputation toward heartless corporate greed. Why not follow the airlines even further and charge hotel guests extra depending on how much luggage they check in with? I think if you want people to like you the last place you should be taking cues from is airlines.
    It bothers me when people selectively edit quotes to support whatever point they are trying to prove.

  3. #3

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    Re: Could WDW introduce Seasonal Ticket Prices?

    I agree with your assessment. Personally I think for the City of Orlando this would be the WORST possible idea.

    I don't want people to feel like when they come to Orlando they are getting nickled and dimed and scammed.

    I want people to feel that Orlando is the perfect place for a family vacation, that it is affordable, and that they always get their money's worth and that once they get home, they instantly want to come back.

    That is what I want. And this to me feels like high way robbery. Why anyone would want to emulate anything from the airlines is BEYOND me.
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  4. #4

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    Re: Could WDW introduce Seasonal Ticket Prices?

    They already do this (sort of), but they spin it in a way that you don't necessary notice it.

    Instead of dynamic pricing where they increase the prices for peak times, the base ticket price is always high, and they offer discounts for the slower seasons. Or they offer free dining, or other offers to get you to the parks and into their hotel rooms. Filling hotel rooms is probably more important to them than filling the parks.

  5. #5

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    Re: Could WDW introduce Seasonal Ticket Prices?

    See I am ok with it, if the base price stays the same, but they use discounting and incentives on non-peak periods.

    But to use varied base pricing to me, just sends the wrong message.
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  6. #6

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    Re: Could WDW introduce Seasonal Ticket Prices?

    I do think that people need to remember that Disney did have a model similar to this with the various 'ticket' grades for rides with the more high volume 'premium' rides costing more. It is not historically out of place to vary admission price at Disney but one thing I do think they should do is vary ticket price across the property. I have never understood why Animal Kingdom for example charges the same admission price as Magic Kingdom. If you have any population problems it would be pretty quickly solved through a combination of varying admission price with or without seasonal variance. If prices DROP in the lower season and max at the current prices I don't see this being anything but a good move.

  7. #7

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    Re: Could WDW introduce Seasonal Ticket Prices?

    They already charge a surcharge for dining during busy times, so this is entirely possible.

    It makes sense from a supply and demand standpoint. It's more convenient for people to visit on weekends, or when kids are out of school, etc. so they'll be willing to pay for that convenience.

    It would be hard to implement for multi-day tickets. At WDW a 5-day ticket comes with a 14-day window to use it, so would they restrict the days admission can be used based on a price paid? It would make more sense for one day tickets.

    I can't help but wonder, would it be extremely irritating to pay more for a similair experience? A weekday versus a weekend for example, with the hours being different, you probably get the same number of attractions in either way. I'm supposed to pay more for the Saturday?

    Having said that, why shouldn't I pay less on a weekday when my ticket doesn't include fireworks, Fantasmic!, etc? That's more of a West coast example, but the concept applies.

    I'm not sure how I feel about this.
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  8. #8

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    Re: Could WDW introduce Seasonal Ticket Prices?

    I think I'd be okay for them to have higher one day ticket prices on certain days, (Like Christmas Week for example) but I don't think that can or should dictate the prices for any type of multi day ticket. It would complicate things to an insane level, which is exactly the opposite you want for someone on a vacation.
    -Bill

  9. #9

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    Re: Could WDW introduce Seasonal Ticket Prices?

    I think Disney to "add value" back into the ticket should automatically add the non-expiration and the park hopping option for free.
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  10. #10

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    Re: Could WDW introduce Seasonal Ticket Prices?

    Getting rid of non-expiration was a surprise to me when it happened. The old non-expiring multi-day tickets were really the best option for people who wanted to visit other properties. The "Magic Your Way" tickets are pretty much designed to get people to stay onsite and keep them there. I know I'm pretty awful at this business stuff but I still think it's better to get people to go to your parks by having the best ones instead of making them think they are throwing their money away if they want to take a day to try somewhere else. Disney used to work pretty well with the other amusement parks in the area before Eisner declared war on Universal and then a little later everyone else. People stop trusting you when you are so transparently greedy.

    I'm ok with the discounts and special offers for packages to try to bolster the slow seasons, but $90 park tickets for a Wednesday in January and $140 for a Saturday in June is a little ridiculous. I don't want to live in a world where people scramble to buy non-expiring one day tickets on the cheapest days of the year because it's a better deal than just buying them for the days you're actually going to be there. I don't want to have to hire an accountant to help me book a vacation.
    It bothers me when people selectively edit quotes to support whatever point they are trying to prove.

  11. #11

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    Re: Could WDW introduce Seasonal Ticket Prices?

    Quote Originally Posted by KingEric View Post
    I want people to feel that Orlando is the perfect place for a family vacation, that it is affordable, and that they always get their money's worth and that once they get home, they instantly want to come back.
    Well for someone who has traveled with her family in tow, I'm here to tell you that Orlando is family friendly for sure, but far from being the perfect place for a family vacation. There are many other cities in this Earth of ours that boost equally impressive family attraction options, plus great sight-seeing, which Orlando hardly offers on it's own. And the only reason why people flock to Orlando is because of the promise of a nice Disney vacation AND also because it happens to be affordable already and more so now that the value of the US dollar is crap when compared to many World currencies.

    Also, I think Disney emulates the poor service offered by many airlines servicing Orlando and I noticed this more during our last visit there earlier this year. Rude employees, over-priced bad food, under-staffing, outdated technologies, dirty parks that made the plane we rode to Orlando look cleaned and sanitized... May I continue? Disney World already emulates the domestic low cost airlines in more ways than one sorry to say.

    I will go one step further and say that Orlando is no longer a seasonal destination it seems. Correct me if I am wrong but it appears that the parks are crowded most every day of the year, and parents have no problem taking children out of school to visit Disney World during so called "affordable seasons". But are they really any more affordable than the summer or Christmas periods? School no longer appears to dictate what season is best to visit the themed parks.

    Now, what I would not mind seeing done at Disney World and Disneyland CA is them introducing the afternoon discounts like those offered at Tokyo Disney Resort and Disneyland Paris, so visitors who arrive at Disney World around 2pm are not forced to pay for a full day ticket just to access the parks for a few afternoon or evening hours.
    Last edited by Aotphks; 11-21-2012 at 02:50 AM.

  12. #12

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    Re: Could WDW introduce Seasonal Ticket Prices?

    Quote Originally Posted by Aotphks View Post
    Well for someone who has traveled with her family in tow, I'm here to tell you that Orlando is family friendly for sure, but far from being the perfect place for a family vacation. There are many other cities in this Earth of ours that boost equally impressive family attraction options, plus great sight-seeing, which Orlando hardly offers on it's own. And the only reason why people flock to Orlando is because of the promise of a nice Disney vacation AND also because it happens to be affordable already and more so now that the value of the US dollar is crap when compared to many World currencies.

    Also, I think Disney emulates the poor service offered by many airlines servicing Orlando and I noticed this more during our last visit there earlier this year. Rude employees, over-priced bad food, under-staffing, outdated technologies, dirty parks that made the plane we rode to Orlando look cleaned and sanitized... May I continue? Disney World already emulates the domestic low cost airlines in more ways than one sorry to say.

    I will go one step further and say that Orlando is no longer a seasonal destination it seems. Correct me if I am wrong but it appears that the parks are crowded most every day of the year, and parents have no problem taking children out of school to visit Disney World during so called "affordable seasons". But are they really any more affordable than the summer or Christmas periods? School no longer appears to dictate what season is best to visit the themed parks.

    Now, what I would not mind seeing done at Disney World and Disneyland CA is them introducing the afternoon discounts like those offered at Tokyo Disney Resort and Disneyland Paris, so visitors who arrive at Disney World around 2pm are not forced to pay for a full day ticket just to access the parks for a few afternoon or evening hours.
    I know this is your opinion, and your experience, but it breaks my heart. I am an Orlando advocate. I live here in Orlando because I love this city. I love it's history (which is rich and goes back long before Disney), and I love what it is trying to be in the world's eye.

    Trust me I know it has a lot of work to do, and I want this city to be the best it can be.

    I just makes me sad that you see it's faults.
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  13. #13

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    Re: Could WDW introduce Seasonal Ticket Prices?

    WDW's attendance is falling, according to an article I read. They may have to do something drastic like seasonal tickets. They've sat on their butts for decades and now it's catching up with them. The new Fantasyland won't stop the lack of interest. It's appeal isn't wide enough, unlike Cars Land which traverses age and gender.
    Over at Disneyland, it's a runaway train! They raised ticket/AP prices and the place is more crowded than ever. I fully expect another price jump soon. If people wont' stop coming no matter what, the skies the limit with prices.

  14. #14

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    Re: Could WDW introduce Seasonal Ticket Prices?

    I think that it would be difficult with multi-day tickets. Also I find the new system a lot more confusing than it was. Looking at the options and working out which is the best for me, I find more complex than it was. I probably don't want it getting even more complex. I'm happy with the free dining as a perk to get me to go in the quiet season.

  15. #15

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    Re: Could WDW introduce Seasonal Ticket Prices?

    Tickets & Packages | Tickets & Reservations | Disneyland Resort

    I was just looking at Disneyland tickets, and they have a "special offers" section on tickets valid from Jan 07 through March 11.

    A 4-day park hopper is $245, where a regularly priced 3-day park hopper is actually $250, and a 4-day is $275.

    This is an off-season discount as opposed to a seasonal surcharge, but variable pricing depending on the time of year is already a reality.
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