New WDW Annual Passes Announced

paxsarah

Active member
I feel like the biggest bummer of this is if you don't live local and don't have DVC your only option is the most expensive one. We now have the hard decision of deciding if we upgrade our December trip tickets at the end of our trip or not.... I'm glad to see them back offering passes and I get the limitations and reservations, I'd just love to see more options for non-locals.
Hasn't this been the case for several years at least? That's when I stopped looking at APs (even one per party) as an option.

I too have been trying to figure out why the reaction on Distwitter is like this is a significant change. This is just a continuation of where APs have been going.
 

George

wishes he had a pink frolicing llama under his tag
While I appreciate the generally calm and level headed approach on these boards, I have started to derive some amusement from the angst and outrage in Distwitter world.
I love the ones who talk about “Chapek” like they know exactly what’s going on in his head. :rolleyes:
 

RetroCOTfan

Well-known member
I love the ones who talk about “Chapek” like they know exactly what’s going on in his head. :rolleyes:
Yep - and so many of the people who do that are the same ones who are quick to engage in the (really gross & weirdly sexualized) hero-worship of "Daddy" D'Amaro. As if the Chairman of Parks, Experiences, and Products is blameless because he has zero input into all the price hikes in the PARKS and PRODUCTS and the reduction of EXPERIENCES. It's an absolutely perfect example of the "life is easier for pretty people" theory.
 

DopeyRunr

the jeweled acrobats only perform amazing stunts f
I too have been trying to figure out why the reaction on Distwitter is like this is a significant change.
I don't think anyone has seen price increases on the order of 40-50% before. It *is* a significant change. But, it's not *just* that prices increased, it's the magnitude of the increase, following on the heels of the death-by-a-thousand-upcharges announcement of Genie+, and coming at a time when attractions are still not fully reopened, and measures have been dropped to protect against a pandemic which has never been worse in Florida than it is right now.
 

josh

Administrator
Staff member
It doesn't strike me as being much of a price hike. My last renewal for an out-of-state platinum plus pass was $1100 + tax last year. The renewal rate is about the same now for the top tier pass, though now I'm paying for PhotoPass and the Water Parks separately if I so choose, which would add $200. I'd be a lot happier if it included Genie+, but five reservations at a time and wide open availability for park passes isn't necessarily making my life that much more difficult. And it wouldn't surprise me if they end up throwing Genie+ in on some level.

But certainly in specific situations where you were using a discount that no longer (currently) exists, it could be a larger "hike." But it will just come down to how many they sell at this price point with these incentives. If nobody buys, they'll sweeten the pot. So don't buy ;)
 

paxsarah

Active member
But certainly in specific situations where you were using a discount that no longer (currently) exists, it could be a larger "hike.”
I guess this is what I was missing. As someone whose previous option was like $1200 and now it’s like $1400 (albeit with fewer benefits), it seemed like par for the course. But if you were forced upward from a no-longer-existent price option, it would seem like a larger increase.
 

bnoble

he's right
I think the pass prices are consistent with how I've thought of them in the past, and think they are still a reasonable value.

The general rule of thumb I've had in mind is: Two "long" trips or three "short" ones in a single year == get a pass. Right now the "list price" of a six day PH for our upcoming March trip is $644 + tax. Two of those are $1288 and for an extra $11 I'd get the pass if only to pop in for an hour on arrival day once. The pricing seems to be in reasonable balance at this point. I don't think there is any need for Disney to offer discounts for someone coming for only two trips within a calendar year, but pricing significantly above that makes it hard to get people to bite on the third visit.

Seems like they hit the sweet spot to me.

I think George has a point about thinning the herd: Company leadership has been talking about reducing attendance in exchange for higher per-person spending for years now. It's a harsh reality, but TWDC's response to people who don't want to pay the new prices: "We are sad to see you go, but we understand."

However, I also don't think that the herd is going to be thinned nearly as much as some people think. I bet Disney was already catering to the "above-median" household for the most part. And while overall inflation is below these increases, all of the economic gains are flowing to above-median households; those at or below the median have been stagnant for 50 years now, while those above the median have seen real growth.


I don't have the data on the tip of my fingers, but it seems as though that trend has been accelerating over the past five to ten years.

The families who come to Disney regularly---and certainly those who come regularly more than once a year---have likely been the beneficiaries of increasing economic inequality. Disney wants their share of it, and I bet they will get it.
 

pixarprincess

Well-known member
Hasn't this been the case for several years at least? That's when I stopped looking at APs (even one per party) as an option.

I too have been trying to figure out why the reaction on Distwitter is like this is a significant change. This is just a continuation of where APs have been going.
I was hoping to see a shift, even a minimal one. It just strikes me as odd that Disneyland (which is a higher percentage of local attendance) has 1 pass catered toward locals and FL which attracts a larger percentage of global audience has a majority that are local only. I was honestly hoping they would move on both coasts to something more ground breaking than what happened. We will still visit, just had higher hopes.
 

Ken

Member
Same here. A little over $600 for our May, '22 trip. $889 to get in a second or third trip in 365 days makes sense dollarwise.

I really, really don't like the inflexibility of the park reservation system. Since we usually stay at BWV, we would occasionally do a park in the AM and go to Epcot for lunch (e.g. via monorail from MK). That option is gone.
I guess it doesn't really matter if I get a resident pass or a DVC pass now?
 

DopeyRunr

the jeweled acrobats only perform amazing stunts f
It's funny to me (and brilliant) that for many people including yours truly, the second response to the price increase after sticker shock is planning MORE trips to get better "value" out of the annual pass.
 

Alcachofa

Active member
I think George has a point about thinning the herd: Company leadership has been talking about reducing attendance in exchange for higher per-person spending for years now.
I think most sensible people have understood this dynamic. It is just they are increasing prices while also decreasing operating hours, general service levels, "perks", etc. It's a double-whammy that isn't fully reflected in the ticket price alone.

As someone who goes only every couple years, my thought process is like this: "Tickets and fees are way up. Oh, well. Wait, why is the Magic Kingdom not open until midnight anymore?" It bums me out that I have to pay literally 100% more for 25% less.

And they couldn't even check when Presidents Day 2022 is! :ROFLMAO:
 

George

wishes he had a pink frolicing llama under his tag
It's funny to me (and brilliant) that for many people including yours truly, the second response to the price increase after sticker shock is planning MORE trips to get better "value" out of the annual pass.
We're comparing it to what it would cost relative to buying individual tickets over the period over the course of two or three trips, so it starts to look like a deal.

I liken it to the Dining Plan. It costs an insane amount of money, but could possibly be maximized to make it cost-effective. But to do that I have to radically change my eating habits, lest I leave money on the table. The other thing that's not really discussed much about the Dining Plans is that WDW restaurant prices are so inflated, that the Dining Plan starts to "makes sense," even more from those who just want to pay and forget about prices. Again, I'd never pay those menu prices for that kind of quality in the Outside World.
 

Strangeite

Well-known member
Disney probably employs a behavioral psychologist or two.
This is all I could think of when you mentioned Disney employing behavioral psychologists.

Disney. Where Dreams can be bottled.
SS.CityofLostChildren.jpg

Again, I'd never pay those menu prices for that kind of quality in the Outside World.

Makes me think of the fried chicken at Olivia's. Everyone, including myself, have raved on their fried chicken and talked about how amazing it is. However, it wouldn't even make the top 10 in my little town.
 

RetroCOTfan

Well-known member
Makes me think of the fried chicken at Olivia's. Everyone, including myself, have raved on their fried chicken and talked about how amazing it is. However, it wouldn't even make the top 10 in my little town.
It's funny how our perspective shifts. For me, it's things like the fish & shrimp at Columbia Harbour House. It's at best the equivalent of Long John Silver's, at a 25%+ markup. But I've been eating it for nearly 40 years now, and having that for lunch while sitting in the A/C listening to sea shanties after a jam-packed, successful morning of MK rides? It's the best lunch I've ever had. Every time.
 

Art Vandelay

that's a shame
Tangent time...most WDW food is not "OMG this is the best ever..." and I tend to tune out anyone who says it is. Mickey Bars? Pass. That Gaston's cinnamon roll? Not good.
 

crumjack

Active member
Tangent time...most WDW food is not "OMG this is the best ever..." and I tend to tune out anyone who says it is. Mickey Bars? Pass. That Gaston's cinnamon roll? Not good.
Lol, agreed, but the nachos from Pecos Bills or Cantina de San Angel just hit the spot. And I know I can get better nachos at almost any Mexican joint or sports bar.

Anyways, I’m sure Chapek or someone has put something into them to make me feel better for paying $12 or whatever for something slightly better than Taco Bell. Everyone grab your torch and pitchfork! #sarcasm
 

cboyer

Well-known member
That is true of any theme park meals though. Even their signature restaurants, the expensive and popular ones, aren't as good as the nicer restaurants out side the bubble. Le Cellier for example, is Outback quality in my opinion, but for Ruth Chris prices. There are some stand outs, but they usually aren't disney owned, like some of the Disney Springs restaurants. But I think most of the park food is gross, so when we run into something that is passable we tend to cling to it, especially after a tiring day in the parks. And that is how you get the "this is so great" reactions to things we all know are average.

But to George's point, the annual pass, like the dining plan, is only "worth it" cost wise if you don't change your behavior drastically to make it so. By arranging our trips by a few days this way or that (not difficult for us to do), we can get two trips in and then it becomes worth having a pass. Only because of the discounts associated with having the pass. If they start messing with those discounts it won't be worth having one anymore.
 

bnoble

he's right
IMO, Le Cellier is a Signature primarily to discourage the masses from flocking to it as a 1-credit dinner. And, in the very beginning it was really quite good. I had a venison dish there on maybe the second or third day after the change that was fantastic.

But, that menu lasted maybe a few months before it reverted to the tasteless filets with over-salted sauces that had always been there.

May of the other Signatures are decent-to-very-good. I've had good meals (even considering the price) at Tiffins, Jiko, and Citrico's in the past fivish years. Not real-world-good-for-the-money, but more than acceptable for a captive audience.
 
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