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fightclub30 wrote:

Idontknow wrote:

Disney has replaced the Extra Magic Hour at a select park each day with 30 minute early entrance an any park you want. So less time, but more choice in where you use it each day.

We haven’t ever had to pay for a ticket aside from the Halloween treat, which we have done twice at Disneyland, but never at Orlando. I don’t know of a ton of other ticketed events. The first time we did Halloween treat it was at California Adventure and we had a blast. It was worth it. The 2nd time it was at Disneyland and we didn’t have as much fun.

Cutting out the bus from the airport I am sure is a cost cutting measure due to the huge losses they are taking due to Covid. I wouldn’t be shocked if that came back once things are back to normal. We’ve never used that bus though since we always have a rental car. Disney is keeping bus service from resort to resort.

I really hope Disney never goes the route of Universal and makes you pay for Fast Pass. That would be disappointing.

They’ve been letting people into the parks early for years, that isn’t a new perk. We used to be “rope-droppers” many mornings, and getting in 30-45 mintues early was common. Nothing everything was up and running yet, but usually a couple big rides and several small rides.

Early Morning Magic (morning, open to everyone) WAS a ticketed ($$) event, separate from Extra Magic Hours (Evening only, and WDW Resort guest only, “Free”) I am guessing that EMM as a ticketed event is done with the new announcement.

A few years ago they started charging for paying for parking at the resorts as well.

There is Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween (Magic Kingdom), Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party (Magic Kingdom), Disney After Hours (Magic Kingdom, might be getting axed as well I would guess), Star Wars Galactic Nights (Hollywood Studios). I know that Halloween and Christmas parties they shut down Magic Kindgom early (around 6pm), and while they don’t kick you out – You can no longer get on any rides. While not a deal breaker, is frustrating.

Another, not ticketed event per se but ticket none the less, is more and more areas for fireworks viewing within the parks, Magic Kingdom, in particular have been sectioned off and require purchasing a ticket from Disney to sit there and watch fireworks. There is usually an added benefit such as food/drinks/kids light-up-toy, whatever.

Disney also has been adding to the “Friendly neighbor Resorts” that got nearly all the perks of staying on-property. Which mean more and more people could use the Extra Magic hours.

Disney is expensive, renting a car saved us a few hundred each trip which helped justify the cost. Renting a car means $15-$25/day parking (depending where you stay). So a week long stay is what $150-$200 to rent a car plus $100-$175 in parking fees at the resorts.

The phrasing Disney used in the announcement did not seem to hint at, or leave open the option of it returning. Due to the options available to guests… It used to be a way to keep people on property and prevent them from spending money elsewhere. But with the ease of Uber/Lyft and other options to go off-site for Dinner, head to Universal for a day, etc. Disney is no longer seeing the same “bang for the buck” as they did. However it was baked into the cost of the room, and resort prices aren’t going down. Baggage service had already been suspended since they originally shut down, hadn’t resumed (and isn’t likely to resume), and Air Port check-in is gone as well.

Every February, Disney also announces their theme park ticket increase, and we all know it is coming again.

In 2012 we went for a week, the start of us going regularly, and it was just the 2 of us, and it was less than $2,000 – park tickets, lodging on site (Pop Century), food, flights, everything. It wasn’t terrible. Our tickets were $260 each for 6 days. Lodging was around $90/night at Pop Century.

We have been planning to take our daughter next year when she is 5, and it is looking like a nearly $5,000 trip to stay on property.

Disney certainly isn’t alone in this. We were going to do Yellowstone and Tetons this past June for a week (before it was cancelled) and that was going to be $4,400 because they have you by the short hairs with lodging.

I’m partially just bitter because in the last 3 years, I have received a 2.2% raise, 0% raise, and then a 5% deduction, and my wife got a 1.5% raise, 0.75% raise, and a 0% raise. While our cost have increased much much more, daycare has risen 8%, 6% and 11%… Vacations are becoming fewer and further between, and Disney has become less and less of a discussion point in our house.

Taking away DME isn’t a back breaker, and if I cannot afford to spend $120 on a few ubers to and from the airport, I really cannot afford the trip to Disney anyway. We are just disappointed at the amount of Disney Magic that has continually disappeared.

FastPass+ was already tested as a paid add-on. Guests in Concierge Level rooms had the option of purchasing 3 (or maybe more, but at least 3) Extra Fast Passes for $75/guest not too long ago. Apparently most people we buying the add-on, which was chump change if you were staying in a concierge level room. So I do think it isn’t that far off, where it will be just like Orlando. MaxPass is already a paid option ($20/ticket/day) at Disneyland. I’d bet money it is coming soon to WDW.

All of this is very much a first world problem, we are very fortunate to still have jobs, income, and health.

For us, when we have compared Disney to other “luxury” or destination trips (Mexico, Europe, etc.), the prices were pretty comparable or even cheaper. Airfare to Orlando is cheap (we’ve always flown for under $300), hotels are cheap if you want them to be (although you can spend a lot if you want), rental cars are cheap. The only thing that really gets you is the ticket price. Yes, a Disney trip will cost more than going to Chicago or the Dells. I do view Disney as a luxury trip that is in a different category than your average family vacation. For our family we are lucky enough to be in a position where we can take a big trip every 1 or 2 years.

We stayed recently at the Swan hotel for $180 a night (maybe $205 with a resort fee). We have never done a Disney dining plan and I know you can spend a ton of money on those if you want. We only eat a few meals on Disney property. Otherwise we buy food at Target and eat breakfast at the hotel and then eat dinner off site. Aside from the Halloween treat we’ve never done any extra ticketed events and really never felt the need to. Many hotels in big cities these days charge for parking, so I guess I don’t see that as just a Disney issue. If you are staying at a Disney resort you don’t have to pay for parking at the parks, so at least you’re not double paying (even the Swan hotel gave us that perk). Our airfare for our recent trip was under $300 total for 4 people (flyer miles and vouchers paid for most of it).

We were supposed to go to Europe last summer but it got canceled due to Covid. That was going to be super expensive when you add up the airfare and the ridiculous lodging rates ($250-400 a night in most cities we were going to). I’m sure food isn’t cheap in Europe either. Now granted, I’m not trying to compare Disney to the same experience as Europe (for me Europe is probably a once-in-a-lifetime thing). But even an all-inclusive in Mexico is typically the same or more expensive than Disney for us because the airfare and hotel in Mexico is so much more expensive that it ends up equalizing out with the Disney park tickets.

Even taking a family trip to Duluth is a fortune these days….over $300 a night for a room in Canal Park in the summer.

I was looking at VRBOs in northern MN for a fishing trip with my son for next summer and everything is over $300 a night for that too (so I didn’t book it). Trips are expensive!