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JLeslie's avatar

Now that Disney CEO Chapek is gone and Iger is back, will more conservatives start booking DisneyWorld trips?

Asked by JLeslie (63519points) 2 months ago
18 responses
“Great Question” (0points)

I’m not so sure very many of them were really avoiding Disney to begin with, but there were plenty of conservatives on social media swearing off Disney over the last year because of the Don’t Say Gay statement.

What are they saying now? Many of us in Florida were hoping fewer people wanted to come to Disney. Especially nice (in my opinion) if it’s fewer people who never want to wear a mask.

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elbanditoroso's avatar

The CEO merry-go-round is ‘inside baseball’ – no one really cares about it except a couple of investors and a handful of employees.

The whole ‘boycott Disney’ thing was complete bullshit and I doubt it made even a tiny difference to Disney’s bottom line. It was political theater and nothing else.

The real Disney problem is that streaming now has serious competition and Disney can’t monopolize kids’ film like it used to. And their Disney parks are huge cash sucks, with attendance permanently hurt because of the pandemic.

In essence, they are in a dying business. It may take 20 years, but Disney has to evolve quickly or it disappears.

LadyMarissa's avatar

NO clue IF it’s true or not, but I read that Disney had announced that they no longer welcome the middle class & low class families to their parks. They only want rich people visiting them. I’ve NEVER been a Disney fanatic, so I won’t miss them when I’m no longer needed to line their pockets!!! I had meant to research that statement further after I heard it, but I got busy with work & forgot about it. So, if anybody heard anything to backup or deny that theory, I’d love to know.

Entropy's avatar

This is the problem with social media. It’s easy to mistake the loudest voice as representing the largest number of people. I think the conventional media make this mistake often, echoing some extreme view on social media as if it represents their audience, and then it becomes a story unto itself.

IMHO, Disney’s bigger problem is that they keep watering down and ruining their own properties. Their crazed addiction to EVERY property being 100% family friendly produces saccharine content that doesn’t take chances.

JLeslie's avatar

DisneyWorld has been mobbed the last year. I do have some Facebook friends who I know in real life, but they aren’t very close friends, just people I know from zumba or some club, who swore of Disney and said they’d rather go to Noah’s Ark, but I don’t think they had a Disney trip planned in the first place.

I’m in Facebook Disney groups and once in a while someone who is planning trip mumbles under their breath in writing that they don’t like Disney politics, but they are still booking their tickets.

So, I never thought it was making a big dent, I wish it had! I am curious to see if those loud voices mentioned in previous answers above change their tune though. I guess that’s what my Q is really about.

As far as Disney only catering to family and children, mostly I agree with that, but Coronado Springs is a lovely resort at DisneyWorld that feels very adult. It’s beautiful, and although there is a hidden Mickey here and there, it mostly targets conventions and adult couples.

Also, the “Marriott family” properties also are more typical Marriott than Disney. Those are the Dolphin, Swan, and Swan Reserve, and you can use your Marriott Points or earn them and still get all the Disney benefits of staying on property.

Most of the newest rides aren’t family friendly. There are height requirements and more action.

As far as catering to the rich, the prices in the last year are ridiculous! Especially the hotels have escalated. It’s mind boggling to me that at Polynesian for example, the cheapest room is $700 a night, and on Facebook I see people just open their wallet and pay. It’s stupidity. The cheapest hotels are now in the low $200’s. That’s still expensive to me, but maybe I’m just old.

People save and save to pay for their trip, which to me means they can’t really afford it. They aren’t rich, they just will spend their last pennies on Disney or anything, that’s how those people function. They probably keep the prices high at Disney more than the rich people; there are many many more lower middle and middle class going to Disney than rich people.

elbanditoroso's avatar

@JLeslie to what degree does “catering to the rich” mean “Catering to rich caucasians”?

JLeslie's avatar

@elbanditoroso As I said, I don’t think Disney caters to the rich, I think the parks mostly cater to the middle class. See the last line of my answer above.

To answer your question, more white Americans will be able to afford it than Black Americans, because there is still socio-economic inequities in America along the races, but plenty of Black people go to DisneyWorld. A TON of Latin Americans go to Disney, especially directly from Latin America, but from within the US too, and the whole world comes to DisneyWorld in general.

mazingerz88's avatar

No clue. I just want my solo Superman movie that’s not crap like Snyder’s Man of Sh*^t was. Not sure who is heading what division. Between Zaslav and Iger. Not done reading a NYT article about the AT&T merger with Time Warner. So much history.

mazingerz88's avatar

^^My bad. Iger and Zaslav have nothing to do with each other. Marvel is Disney. Superman is…whatever his controlling company calls itself now. Lol

JLeslie's avatar

I became more curious about target markets. I found this:

The Disney parks experience is targeted to middle income families – people who earn between $50,000 to $74,999 want to visit Disneyland the most. Those in the highest income group, between $150,000 and $200,000, were the least likely to want to visit a Disney park in the coming year.

Source: https://www.start.io/blog/disney-target-market-discover-disneys-audience-demographics-marketing-strategy-competitors/

Here is another source (below) with race information (it states 80% white and the US is about 75% white) and also the link has more income information. https://www.streetlightdata.com/measuring-travel-behavior-by-demographics-disney-world/?type=blog/

jca2's avatar

Did conservatives actually ever stop going to WDW? I have Republican friends who went recently, because the family wanted to and it’s almost like a rite of passage for families with little kids.

The last two times I went to Disney World, I did extensive research (which seems to be a requirement if you want to “do it right”). I looked at TripAdvisor and I looked at FB groups, and I also googled a lot, and checked out other social media. Some people are real Disney World “junkies” and will go no matter what. They write that as soon as the plane takes off to leave the city of Orlando, they are wistfully dreaming of their next trip. They are addicted to anything Disney, they’re collectors of Disney stuff, and they spend, spend, spend a ton of money in the parks. Disney World is genius at getting people to part with their money, from the room prices, the meal plans, the photo plans, the souvenirs and merchandise, everything. I think people are not swayed by the politics. That’s just my thought. They might say they can’t stand the liberalism, but true WDW fans are going no matter what. As pointed out by @JLeslie, they come from all over, and South America is a big customer base.

JLeslie's avatar

@jca2 I don’t think they really stopped. Maybe one or two, but I wonder if they will stop complaining about Disney politics on social media now.

They are junkies. Very addicted. I have local friends that go almost every month, but we live an hour away. Some of these people come to Disney 2–3 times a year, or can only come once every two years, but they obsess about it constantly. How to surprise their kids, decorating money envelopes to leave for the hotel staff, bring pixie dust gifts to give to other guests at the parks, planning itinerary, they are obsessed.

jca2's avatar

@JLeslie If you look at TripAdvisor WDW Forums, people will plan their trips to the parks down to the minute. Granted, it does take a lot of planning to go there and maximize your time. I found it to be so much work (and money) which is why we’re not going there any time soon.

After the people on TripAdvisor return from the parks, they do “trip reports” where they talk about each day and what they did.

When I went there, both recent times, we stayed off park property in the area of Sea World, in a place with free breakfast, so that was a savings, not having the meal plan was a savings, and being out of the parks so more free to do other things was kind of nice. I know the “carrot on the stick” with staying at a park property is you get early entrance but that was ok. I read up on how to get ouf of the park quickly at the end of the day so it worked out really well. I found our days at WDW to be totally exhausting. As I tell people who are going there, it’s not a relaxing vacation.

I don’t know how people do it with babies and toddlers. First of all, it’s not fun for babies and toddlers, in my opinion. They’re happy at a playground for an hour or two. At Disney World, parents are stressed out, kids are stressed out, the heat is a factor. I think parents like being able to say they took their kids there, plus it’s great to get photos with the iconic castle and the characters, but other than that, it’s a lot of work and money.

Maybe the ideal thing would be to just go for a few hours in the evening, on multiple days, but I’m not sure if there’s a discount for doing it that way.

JLeslie's avatar

@jca2 Obviously, local people can just do a few hours at a time if they have annual passes, or even a resident 3 or 4 day pass it used to be ok, but prices have increased. For people traveling far distances it would be a fortune to just go for a few hours several days in a row.

There used to be out-of-state annual passes, but they aren’t offered anymore. Even in-state don’t have weekends when you first sign up now, you have to wait a full year and renew.

I’m in a Facebook Disney group and you get all sorts of opinions on bringing children under age 5. I’ve always said it’s a lot of money when your child won’t remember it.

jca2's avatar

@JLeslie That’s the other thing – the little kids won’t remember it. The first time I went, I was about 9, to Disney Land and I don’t remember that.

It used to be that the characters would be roaming the parks, and you could get random photos with them. Now, the main characters like Mickey, or Ariel you have to make an appointment to meet. That’s more time to do that – you can spend an hour or two on line for that. So much time spent on random stuff like that. When I was in WDW when my daughter was little, we did a dinner at the Castle with the princesses, and that’s a good thing but time consuming – you have to arrive early, then make your way through the check in process – it was a few hours for sure, between arrival and being done with dinner.

JLeslie's avatar

@jca2 The castle dinner is now Be Our Guest and from what I’ve read you meet Cinderella when you first walk in for a minute and the Beast comes around once or twice during dinner and that’s it. I can’t see paying a huge premium for that. Other character meals are much more interactive. Some people just really want to eat in the castle though.

jca2's avatar

@JLeslie: When we went, it included photos and it included a bunch of princesses, but not the Beast. The fact that it included photos and the meal was pretty good quality, plus the princesses, made it a good package. We also did a princess meal at Akershus in Epcot, which was pretty good. Yeah, the Castle was kind of impressive with that meal which was also a bonus. I remember saying to my mother that the fact that it included photos was what really made it great. At the time, about 10 years ago, it was about 60 dollars per person which was not bad for the whole thing.

JLeslie's avatar

@jca2 I think the change at the castle meal happened during covid. There was much less interaction with characters during the height of covid, and some things have not reverted back, although now you can hug characters and get photos right next to them, which was not possible for a long time.

I also went to Akershus at EPCOT for the princess dinner years ago and I thought it was pretty good. The food was good and lots of princesses.

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