Disney. Only For The Rich.

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I’m getting tired of Mickey Mouse. Aren’t you?

In case you didn’t know, attendance at all the World Wide Disney Parks are down at least 17%. (click here) Why? Because Disney raised their park entrance fees by 20%. Disney isn’t worried. In fact, they are elated. Why? Because fewer people are attending, less work has to be done and because of the high raise in entrance fees, Disney’s profits are up. Makes perfect corporate business sense: work less, reduce your overhead, raise rates and watch your profits soar.

 

I’m certain Walt Disney must be turning over in his grave. This is not what Mr. Disney had in mind when he started his theme park enterprises. Walt Disney wanted to build a place where ALL children could go and have fun (with their parents, friends and relatives). Walt Disney called his theme parks the ‘Happiest Place On Earth’.

Here’s a comment from Disney Inc. regarding their drop in attendance: But while attendance fell, profits during that same time did not. The park portion of the Walt Disney Company had an operating income of $3.3 billion in 2016, which the Times reports is a 9% increase from the year before; again, an increase that could be attributed to the new pricing systems. So while fewer folks are going to the parks, those attending, no matter if they’re coming in on a peak holiday, are perhaps having a better experience than in the years before.

I don’t know about you but paying a $107 entrance fee to enter the (un) Magic Kingdom comes to around $428 for a family of four. That’s a helluva lot of money. Throw in a few meals (Disney frowns upon attendees bringing in their own food) and a few souvenirs and you’re looking at a one day price tag of almost $1,000. Granted yes, you can save (?) money by buying a multi-day pass BUT that means you have to stay in your hotel longer, have more meals out, buy more souvenirs, thus more ka-ching! No matter how you slice it, what you do and/or where you stay, if you’re going to Disney World it’s going to cost you big bucks. Sadly, Disney has now become a theme park for only the rich.

So, what’s a parent or fun-seeking child to do? Fortunately, Disney World isn’t the only game in town. Especially in Florida or California. You have Universal Studios, LegoLand, Harry Potter and Dinosaur Land to name just a few alternatives. In fact, attendance at Universal is up 7.5% (click here). Don’t forget you have Six Flags and as I have just recently discovered, DollyWood.

thDolly Parton, county music’s superstar (bless her ever-loving country heart) has built a beautiful, 150 acre, down home theme park in the Smokey Mountains of Tennessee. (click here) There’s a theme park, water park, resort, dinner show and lovely cabins to make your stay a memorable one. Located in the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains in Pigeon Forge, DollyWood is a 150-acre family destination and ranks among the “best of the best” in theme parks for Best Shows, Best Food, Best Christmas Event, Best New Ride for Wild Eagle, and Friendliest Park!

A one day pass to DollyWood Theme park for an adult is only $67. Children between the ages of 4 to 11, plus senior citizens age 60 and older get a discount! Hello grandma and grandpa! A one day pass to the water park is only $49 for adults with the same child and senior discounts applied. Of course, if you get a multi, dual park pass you will save even more money. Plus, if you buy 4 passes, as in a family of four, Dolly takes off another $40 in savings! I wouldn’t walk to DollyWood. I’d run!!!

With more than 40 rides, 15 exceptional shows, five of the South’s largest festivals, Southern-style dining, and the friendliest employees in the world . . . DollyWood is an award-winning destination! DH and I have put a visit to DollyWood on our Bucket List. It’ll be one of the places we are going to stop at and see while traveling in our new RV on our way to The Grand Canyon.

th-1And to heck with Disney. Thankfully, we Americans still have a fellow American, Dolly Parton who truly cares about us, is not corporate greedy AND just wants us to have fun AND enjoy life in her home town.

Thank you, Dolly. We appreciate it.

We will always love you.

PS: Netflix is running an excellent, luscious French version of Beauty And The Beast. The movie is dubbed but the story line is excellent, the visuals divine, the costumes, the scenery, this version will just take your heart away! AND IT’S FREE (with your Netflix subscription).

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20 thoughts on “Disney. Only For The Rich.

  1. I hope you will take the time to also visit the Great Smoky Mountain National Park while in the Dollywood area. We live in Tennessee and have visited many times. Also, take a stroll in downtown Gatlinburg. Completely commercialized but an experience in itself.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Sad that Disney has made their parks out of reach for the majority. I’m thankful that my idea of a good time is far removed from visiting an amusement park. A day at a National Park, however, is another story! Thankfully the price is too!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I just got the lifetime $10 senior pass to all the national parks, so I am really looking forward to visiting.
      It is truly very, very sad about Disney. I don’t think the way it is now Walt Disney planned on. Too bad.
      Thanks for your comment.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. We just went to Universal in Orlando. The tickets were $100 a piece and $80 for the express pass, so you don’t have to wait in awful long lines. Another $10 for the pass holder. The only thing that was cost effective was the drink cup for $15. There were free refills the rest of the day. We did do Legoland and found tickets that were bogo, so about $45 per person. No long lines and much more fun.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Angie. I’m planning on taking both my granddaughters t LegoLand. I heard good things about it PLUS the girls love legos!
      I don’t think I’ve ever been to Universal. Maybe once we passed through it ions ago back in CA.
      Thanks for sharing your experience and for your comment.

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  4. We took our daughter to Disney World 30+ years ago and I thought it was expensive then. There’s no way I would pay those prices now! Anyway, I’m with Lucy, I’d rather spend my time in a national park or even some of our Texas state parks.

    I’m looking forward to your trip to the Grand Canyon as I have never been there. We are planning a trip to Yellowstone next year for our 50th wedding anniversary.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Florence. My husband worked for Disney Imagineering for 12 years. he even gets a pension from them. So, I shouldn’t bad mouth Disney. B U T their prices are truly for the rich now. Shame and a pity. My kids had a blast there (all for free for 12 years). They were truly blessed. Too bad I can’t take my grandkids there. Oh well.

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  5. Thoughtful post, Cindi. I had known that Disney had raised their prices, but it is interesting that they have more profits with less people visiting. Who would have guessed? Thanks for the plug for Dollywood, something to keep in mind. Will be interested to hear how you like it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Chris. I’m like this down home, southern charm more and more. I had never thought of going to TN but my sister is RVing there now and she is having a blast.
      Who knew?
      Sometimes our own backyard can be a plethora of good times and good adventures.
      I’ll keep you posted.

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  6. Well, color me crazy, but I don’t think ANY amusement park is worth he hassle, let alone price. I agree with the above commenter. Sorry, but they can feel free to charge whatever the heck they want, and I am still not buying. I wouldn’t cross the street to go to an amusement park! I hardly think a trip to an amusement park is a necessity for raising kids. I am not depriving my kids by not taking them to one.. It’s sad that so many people seem to think this….pay for amusement. I don’t get it! People will think nothing of saving the thousands of dollars for a trip to Disney, but God forbid they sock that money away for college…or pay down the mortgage. Frankly, if Disney, or any park wasn’t making money, they would lower the prices. And, these parks are making money because people go. For the life of me, I don’t see the appeal. Give me a walk along a beach, or hike in the woods. For what it’s worth, I also think $67 is a huge price found r admission too.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Meg, makes going to a National or State park all the much more inviting. But sometimes kids like water parks or to ride the rides. Nothing wrong with that. As I said, Dollywood reduces their entrance fees considerably for kids and grandparents (seniors). My husband worked for Disney Imagineering for 12 years so we got everything for free. My kids were blessed. Not so much for others. Sad.

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      • Sad? That’s just my point, it’s not SAD if a kid doesn’t get to go to an amusement park. It’s not a necessity for raising kids, and if you think it is is just a testament to their superior marketing!
        As for National parks, I loved the Cape Cod National seashore, in October. Oh, my. Beautiful!

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      • Meg, when I was a little girl, living in Brooklyn NY, my dad used to take me to Coney Island every weekend to ride the carousel. It only cost my dad fifty cents but I knew it was a sacrifice. Kids know things like that. But my dad used to stand by the side of the carousel always prompting me to reach for the gold ring. Which I did but rarely got. The happiness and joy on both our faces when I rode that carousel is priceless. I’m sorry. But we kids love amusement parks. They’re fun. And adventurous. And if done right, families can have a lot of fun there and create happy memories. Of course it’s not a necessity to raising kids. But it makes being a kid more the meaningful. That’s who amusement parks are for: kids.
        You need to reconnect with your inner child. That’s what I’ve been doing lately and it’s been eye opening. Looking through life again as a child. Youth is wasted on the young, that’s for sure.
        I cherished my time at all the Disney Parks with my children. In fact, after my husband and I were married in 1983, we went to DisneyWorld in Orlando for our honeymoon. We took my two kids along. I remember all of us counting out our change and our pennies in the parking lot just to come up with the entrance fees. We had a glorious time. Frugal to the end (we RV’d there and ate lunch back in the RV saving even more money and NO souveniers). Little did we know that within the next few years my husband would be employed by Disney and my girls enjoyed 12 years of free access to anything Disney.
        Back in 1983 Disney was affordable. Today, as I said, you have to be rich to go to Disney and I find it sad. Disney parks have much technological advances that are very educational and inspiring to a young mind. But that shouldn’t stop families from going to other more affordable amusement parks, within reason. Riding a roller coaster or the carousel or going through the fun house is a lot of fun for a kid. Hiking mountains and swimming in the ocean has it’s place too. Kids should get to enjoy as much of life as they can comfortably can. But hey! That’s just my opinion. Kids don’t need to live in a house/apartment or go to a public school either. You can raise your kid in a cave and teach them locally, right? Nor do they need to eat 3 square meals a day. They can exist on gruel twice a day, right? How far down do you want to take it? Nothing really can be a necessity for raising kids, right? Where do you draw the line?

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  7. Ooob, also for families re:/National Parks–Carlsbad Caverns. We made a trip there when DH still flew and we lived in TX. It was cheap, easy, and very impressive. Truly one of the world’s wonders. LOTS of walking, great memory!

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    • Hi Sharon. My sister is in DollyWood right now. She says it’s gorgeous! She’s having a blast. School is still in session, so not too many kids running around. She’s keeping copious notes and pre-testing the waters before Nick and I get there later on in the season. I’ll keep you posted.

      Like

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