Disney Reveals Strategy Behind “Delivering a Better Guest Experience”

in Disney Parks, Disneyland Resort, Walt Disney World

Sleeping Beauty Castle

Credit: Disney

Disney has been listening to Guests, and now, here’s their strategy.

Bob Iger interviewed by ABC
Credit: ABC News

For decades Disney Parks around the world, especially the Disneyland Resort and Walt Disney World, have been a home away from home for millions of people. The memories created there are some that can’t be created elsewhere, and Walt Disney really created what he set out to do: a place where adults and children can have fun together. The Magic is almost palpable, which is why when something goes wrong or Disney does something to distance Guests from the Park, fans take it almost personally.

Cinderella Castle Partners statue at Walt Disney World
Credit: Disney

Related: Bob Iger Actively Bringing More IP to Disney World and Disneyland to “Increase Capacity”

Following the reopening of Disney Parks worldwide, fans began to see little things, little changes that were doing just that. It wasn’t just the price hikes for tickets, though, that has been a significant thorn in the side of Guests for a few years. No, it was many little things like taking away free services like FastPass or charging more for services like PhotoPass, and the cheapening of cherished experiences without changing the price, like at the Blue Bayou.

Blue Bayou Restaurant sign
Credit: Disney

The rising ticket prices, coupled with the fees from Disney Genie+, parking, hotels, travel,  and more, have begun to price out lower-income and even middle-class families, making them feel like they can’t afford to visit their “home” anymore. Not to mention the people there are stressed out, overworked, and underpaid; the paint is peeling, the cobwebs haven’t been taken care of, and it all begins to feel really inhospitable for Guests. This is why so many were overjoyed when CEO Bob Iger returned after the ousting of former CEO Bob Chapek.

Bob Iger (left) and Bob Chapek (right) at Galaxy's Edge
Credit: Disney

It has been four months now since Iger’s return, and fans are beginning to get antsy. They’re not the only ones; with the announcement this week that 7000 Disney employees will soon be out of work and Disney Parks Chairman Josh D’Amaro confirming that some of these cuts will indeed be coming from Parks, everyone needs some good news. Hopefully, this is only the beginning of the good news.

Josh D'Amaro at Disney Springs
Credit: Disney

Related: CEO Bob Iger Speaks on Future of Unpopular Disney Park Reservations

According to slides from the earnings presentation, shared by journalist Scott Gustin, not only has Disney been listening to their Parks audience, but now, they are implementing some specific strategies to bring the Disney Parks more in line with what fans would like to see. On the first set of slides, fans can see a list of three strategies:

  • Increased availability of the lowest price tickets
  • More access for annual passholders and Park Hopper tickets
  • Select complimentary digital photo downloads and resort parking

This does go a long way to fixing some of the errors of the Chapek era, though Park reservations are still on the table, and while they’re making hand-over-fist with Genie+, that hasn’t been mentioned either. The presentation did go further in-depth in a later slide, addressing Disneyland and Walt Disney World specifically:

@ScottGustin said:

There was also a slide about those “recent changes” at domestic parks – but it’s worth noting we still do not have a start date for most of these changes. They’re still using “soon” in those instances.

While this does show that Disney is conscious of the changes they need to make, the steps are very trepidatious and, in some cases, very vague. Disney knows what they need to do to fix the Parks; it just seems as though they’re not ready to make that commitment financially. After all, despite having a very profitable quarter, they are planning on cutting back and firing 7000 employees.

What do you think about these proposed improvements? Let us know in the comments below!

in Disney Parks, Disneyland Resort, Walt Disney World

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