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BEACHCOMBER: If Only I Had Bought Disney Stock

  • By David Barron

By Dave Barron

A once a year trip to Disneyland was magical. Then as prices went up, we changed our routine to once every two years. Now that the Disney Corporation has raised one-day ticket prices to $92, it may be a once every five years – if ever again. I haven’t been there for three years because of the huge crowds and lack of entertainment for this mature person.

Going to Disneyland used to be a family event. I spent one day at Disneyland on my honeymoon nearly 50 years ago. Later, as we had children we went regularly.

I was lucky to have generous in-laws. They would host an annual trip to Disneyland for all their seven grand children and their parents. Sometimes the kids would even bring a long a friend. Parents handled some of the expenses for meals and souvenirs. I remember a couple of time that we had a picnic lunch.

My in-laws would spend between $200 to $300 getting the family inside the happiest place on earth. Eventually, that stopped and died a natural death.

For a long time, high school graduating classes would go to Mickey’s park for an All-night Grad Party. I don’t think many schools do that anymore.

Disney said in a statement that starting Sunday, a one-day adult ticket to one park will cost $92, a $5 increase. Kids’ tickets also jumped $5, to $87. Parking will go up to $16.

The prices apply to either Disneyland Park or Disney California Adventure Park. Buyers of annual passes will see similar increases.

The Disneyland statement says the price hikes were brought on by a variety of factors, but the tickets “represent a great value given the breadth and quality of attractions and entertainment at the parks.”

I think part of the reason is that they (Disneyland) doesn’t expect to get any resistance from tourists or the younger generation. Many people think nothing of spending a hundred dollars at Chili’s or Olive Garden for regular 4 course dinner, especially if you have a couple of $10 glasses of wine or a tall $5 glasses of beer. And, if you can put it on a credit card, it’s so much easier.
I have friends and relatives that have annual passes. I guess they probably will renew them. What’s a few more dollars more on a credit card. However, these folks make sure they get their full value by going to Disneyland at least once a month.

Maybe that’s the way to beat out the increase in prices. Buy an annual pass and go regularly. This will bring down the per-visit cost substantially.

I don’t suggest we boycott Disneyland. I understand from friends who work there, that it is a great place to work. Salaries and benefits are very competitive. The only disadvantage is that they work during the holidays and weekends and long hours (on your feet). I wouldn’t want to impact their employment.

What do you think?  What are you going to do?

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