Disney’s Soaring Prices Force Guests Into Bank Loans to Afford Vacation

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family in front of cinderella castle on VIP tour disney world

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It looks like some Disney Guests want to visit Walt Disney World and Disneyland so badly, they are no longer just saving up for the vacation, but taking out loans to make the magic happen.

disney world guest
Credit: Disney

It is no secret that Disney is an expensive place to vacation. Now that hotel rooms are tougher to find, the 50th anniversary is being celebrated, and shows like World of Color, Fantasmic!, Disneyland Forever, and the Main Street Electrical Parade have returned, the desire to visit a Disney Park will only continue to increase, especially after so many Guests have had to put off trips.

disney world gate
Credit: Disney

We recently covered how prices for multi-day tickets have gone up at Walt Disney World. We used a 4-day trip as the basis for our comparisons. Park Hopper Plus 4-day tickets used to range from $546.65 — $708.57 and are now $559.53 — $708.57. It appears that on average, multi-day tickets increased by around $20 or so. On top of that, hotel room rates continue to increase, and although currently suspended, Annual Passes in Disney World have gone up in cost, as well as the new Magic Key Pass in Disneyland. We have also seen food pricing go up while portions go down, as well as the rise of liquor. To add, the addition of Disney Genie+ is now a new financial opportunity for Disney, whereas before, FastPasses were free.

disney world animal kingdom tree of life
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Related: Disney Scraps “Planning Ahead”, Changes Disney Genie+ to Combat Demand

During the Walt Disney Company fourth-quarter earnings call, the issue of inflation and the potential for increased prices at Disney Parks inevitably came up during the question and answer segment.

aladdin (left) and jasmine (right) with kids at disney world
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Related: CEO Defends Controversial Disney Genie, Response “Overwhelmingly Positive”

Walt Disney Company CFO Christine McCarthy addressed the situation, noting that Disney has no plans to outright raise prices within Josh D’Amaro’s Parks, Experiences and Products division. She did, however, indicate that Disney is looking at a number of ways to cut costs behind the scenes, including “reducing portions” at Disney Parks restaurants. Since then, we have already seen portion sizes shrink, while costs have risen for many different food and beverage items across the Park.

Knowing how quickly the cost of a Disney vacation has risen, it is not shocking to think that some Guests are no longer able to afford the vacations they used to take a few years ago. So, in order to keep the magic alive, Guests are doing whatever they can to access Diseny — including taking a loan out to pay for it.

It seems that this is becoming so common, that others are starting to talk about it on Twitter. Theme Park History (@TPHYoutube) stated:

For the love of Michael Eisner, please do NOT finance or take a loan out for your vacation to either Universal or Disney.

The theme park fan and YouTuber noted for both Universal and Disney, but, Universal is often a vacation that can be done at a lower cost as opposed to Disney. But, the best Orlando vacation occurs when Guests combine both Parks, which is the most expensive option. Jack from Park Hopping (@JackWelliot) responded:

It scares me that this needs to be said.

It seems that families looking to travel to the Most Magical Place on Earth, or The Happiest Place on Earth will have to start saving months earlier than usual with the way prices have continued to increase at the Parks.

Disney's BoardWalk at night
Credit: Disney

There are always ways to save on your vacation by choosing a cheaper hotel. At Disney World, Value Resorts are the lowest option in terms of pricing, but good neighbor hotels provide even better rates, at times which can save you hundreds. Avoiding pricey table service restaurants can also lower the cost of your trip exponentially.

What do you think about the current pricing for a Disney vacation?

Let the expert team at Academy Travel help you plan your next magical vacation to Disneyland Resort, including Disneyland Park, Disney California Adventure, and the Downtown Disney District. Or what about Walt Disney World Resort’s four theme parks — Magic Kingdom, EPCOT, Disney’s Animal Kingdom, and Disney’s Hollywood Studios — and the Disney Springs shopping and dining district!

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