PDA

View Full Version : Recent Trip with 'newbies' / Likes & dislikes


Captain Crook
10-22-2002, 08:38 AM
In relation to a post I made regarding my recent visit with a group of 17 first time WDW visitors I would like to post the following list of observations (that I compiled) that I thought interesting:

Highlights:
1. Cirque du Soleil (the runaway favorite)
2. Illuminations
3. Kilimanjaro Safari
4. It'sTough To Be A Bug
5. POC
6. Festival of The Lion King
7. Splash Mountain
8. TOD
9. RnR
10. B&TB

Disappointments
1. Test Track
2. ToT
3. HM

I find it surprising in that the new was generally more favorable than the classic with this crowd who had never seen any of it.

Unbelievable to me was the low grades of TT & espcially ToT. The explanation was that they didn't live up to what they had heard...(hype)...

Again this is all subjective. But how often do you get to hear from such a large group of 'newbies' at one time?

This makes me wonder if perhas I don't view things with those 'rose colored glasses' a bit more than I thought...But perhaps they're more like rose colored nostalgic glasses that we all share on this board???

Any thoughts?
:smooth: :smooth: :bounce: :smooth: :smooth:

DisneyKidds
10-22-2002, 09:17 AM
Come on Cap'n - you know as well as I that these new swabbies wouldn't know 'real Disney' if it jumped up out of the waters and bit 'em on the **** ;) :rolleyes: :crazy:.

Mascara Snake
10-22-2002, 10:35 AM
Newbies never cease to amaze. I went in september with some friends and their two kids (3 and 5). There fave was camp Minnie-Mickey!!!!!
Also they said they were glad Character Caravan replaced early-entry!

Bstanley
10-22-2002, 10:37 AM
Well Cap'n I think you've found some evidence of something I've thought existed for some time now.

Let's call it 'emotional imprinting' - you know - like when 'Mama' = the first thing a baby duck spots when it breaks out of the shell.

Another example of it - I've observed that the WDW resort that people most like will typically be the first resort that they stayed at.

Most of the folks on the DIS boards are going to be people with a Disney history - perhaps even started going to WDW when they were young (lucky them! :-). So they are going to have emotional attachments to the attractions they first visited. So no matter what replaces them they're not going to like it.

One thing I found interesting in your list - 3 of the 9 (skipping Cirque) 'highlights' are at AK...

DisneyKidds
10-22-2002, 10:58 AM
Mr. B - good observation :). There are other things we can call it ;)......................

I have to disagree with this...
Another example of it - I've observed that the WDW resort that people most like will typically be the first resort that they stayed at.
I think a 'first resort' experience can either give you broad or a rather narrow perspective on Disney resorts, but I don't think most are beholden to their first.
One thing I found interesting in your list - 3 of the 9 (skipping Cirque) 'highlights' are at AK...
I noted the same exact thing as I read the list. Not too bad for an incomplete park that was a conceptual failure :rolleyes:.

KNWVIKING
10-22-2002, 11:20 AM
I'm LMAO over this thread. I love the newbies observations.

DisneyKidds
10-22-2002, 11:58 AM
Originally posted by Mascara Snake
Newbies never cease to amaze. I went in september with some friends and their two kids (3 and 5). There fave was camp Minnie-Mickey!!!!!
Also they said they were glad Character Caravan replaced early-entry!
You know, some of your observations might not be as baffling as you think. Festival of the Lion King is one of the best live shows on property. The Pocahontas show is also done nicely for a short one for kids. Last time we were there we had Mickey and Minnie practically to ourselves. What's not to like? This area is not our 'favorite' - that would be different for everyone - but it is a must see area on every trip, and for very good reason.

If they like seeing characters and are not early risers, their preference for CC may have had a basis. Guess what - there are a lot of Disney veterans who probably preferred CC over EE.

BRERALEX
10-22-2002, 12:09 PM
It doesnt seem like their too far off with there likes.

the dislikes: I LOVE ABSOLUTELY LOVE HM but i can see how a newbie would find it overhyped.

TOT i have no idea how they could dislike it. the theming is off the charts i love pointing out the empty fountain outside that has the water stains on the sides. TOT is an A, A+ to me.

TEST track i can half understand. they put so many billboards up about it they make you think your gonna go faster then the speed of light and its so so. yes once you hit the outside i mean its pretty good but i go faster on the parkway inmy own car and driving. to me the whole attraction feels like a big billboard.

hopemax
10-22-2002, 01:17 PM
In June 2001, I toured WDW with 4 sets of Aunts & Uncles, 2 cousins (16 & 18), and my Grandma. 1 set visited MK & Epcot in 1982 when my Aunt was 6 months pregnant (so she didn't do a lot of rides).

Impressions from my group:

cousin 16: Favorite - Rock n Roller coaster, it made her Dad's hair look like the Boss from Dilbert. She was kind of "above" the whole Disney thing. So I'm not sure what else she really liked or didn't.

cousin, 18: Absolutely fell in love with WDW. He always felt left out when they would go to Great America because he didn't ride the thrilling rides, the Whizzer was as far as he could go. His favorites were the Haunted Mansion, Space Mountain, and Millionaire, but basically everything he saw he liked, except CBJ. He thought Tower of Terror was just "wrong." It was the drop, that got him, from a theming aspect it was great.

Grandma, 70+: My grandma was raised in Brooklyn and thus says no to nothing. Tower or Terror, Space Mountain, Splash Mountain... as long as she was with us, she did them. But her favorite thing was the American Adventure. My parents and I wanted to take her on CoP but the group got tired before we got to it at the MK and she went back to the hotel with them. Kilamanjaro Safaris was another favorite

The Aunts & Uncles: One aunt left HISTA mid-show in tears, another aunt thought the Canada circlevision movie was the most impressive thing she had ever seen. They loved Fast Track (that would be Test Track to us). And everyone was blown away by Spectomagic, and Illuminations. Epcot was their favorite park. Spaceship Earth, Cranium Command, Living with the Land, Living Seas all good reviews. They appreciated the adult feel of the park. But AK and especially, Festival of the Lion King seemed a bit "out there" for them.

We took everyone to MGM one morning and after doing Millionaire most of the aunts & uncles went back to the hotel. They were pooped out. But my cousins, my Grandma, and 2 uncles went with my Dad and I around MGM. Enough to do the rides, Indy, Muppets, but no shows. So I didn't really get a good read on what people felt about the park.

They were there 4 days, and it took a good day and a half for them to stop asking where the "rides" were. They were expecting Great America and steel. For most of them, that would have been a bad thing. We went on this trip because my Mom's youngest sister, mom of the kids, was dying of cancer. It was her choice to come to WDW, everyone else expected to be sitting on benches chatting, while the kids rode rides. WDW won them over because they didn't have to sit on the benches. But if you would have seen them on the first day, you would have thought they would have preferred the steel (that they don't ride). It was a bizarre, social experiment. They knew how to react to steel, *this* they didn't and it made them uncomfortable.

raidermatt
10-22-2002, 02:01 PM
Captain, as you so accurately pointed out, even opinions of 17 newbies (must have been fun getting dinner PS's ;) ), doesn't exactly qualify as a valid sample.

True, three of the favorites in your group are at AK, but I would say that AK's attendance (at least up to this year) is plenty enough proof that AK fell short with much of the public. (though, certainly its closer to the mark than DCA). Also, the fact that MK is by far the park with the highest attendance, but only had 2 attractions on your list might indicate your group was skewed a bit.

Much of the criticsim of AK revolves not around what IS there, but rather that there isn't ENOUGH of it there. (with a few notable exceptions on this board...)

As for your observation that the new is more popular than the old, I think you'd agree that we'd need to see ridership numbers to make a real judgement on this. But even if your group's preferences are typical of newcomers, is that really that surprising? Especially when you consider that 7 of the 9 park shows/attractions that you listed are pretty much all liked by even the toughest critics around here. The only possible exceptions are "It's Tough..." and "RnRC". But Its Tough only suffers with the regulars because many would like to see something other than 3D films. RnRC is generally seen as at least a decent attraction that falls short in some rather subtle areas.

Its not like PW or Aladdin showed up on your newbies' favorites list...

I do agree that nostalgia has a part in what we view as our favorite attractions, but most of us can see past that when taking a look at new attractions and evaluating whether they are "Disney".

You may have posted this already, but what was the breakdown of ages in your newbie group?

I'm also curious about what their overall impression was of WDW. Have any become hooked? What is the overall level of their desire to return?

For those who do go back, it would be interesting to see if their lists change as the go on attractions for the 2nd and 3rd times, and they start to notice the details in some of the attractions that you miss the first time around.

Regardless, thanks for posting the perspectives, Captain.

Captain Crook
10-22-2002, 03:00 PM
Matt, the kids were aged 8-13 (6); There were 3 between 18 & 21; With 8 between 30 & 40.

One of the kids (particularily), a 9 year old boy LOVED everything (he could become one of us).

The adults were truly impressed by the show quality & CM talent. Likewise, they were stunned by the cleanliness & affability of all CM's. Here I will point out that I also had the good pleasure of standing in a long line with a very nice young lady from Portugal and discussed Disney a lot. She is a veteran of DL Paris & she commented on how much cleaner it is than WDW (food for thought, I guess).

While I believe two of the 'newbie' groups will probably return to WDW in the future, I don't believe any whole families were converted and I will add that the general cost of things weighed heavy on the group.

While it's true that Aladdin didn't appear on my overall list I'd surely say that it was the favorite of all of the under 10 kids (4), ahead of Peter Pan, Pooh, IASW, Buzz, etc.

Lastly, I know that you (Matt) are only quoting the numbers we have available, but I have been saying all year that the crowds at AK have been higher (in my opinion) on every trip than last year. This weeknd I think the Friday AK crowd rivaled the MK Sunday crowd (for density). I think you'll be seeing that AK isn't the big worry (attendance wise) when new numbers come out.
:smooth: :smooth: :bounce: :smooth: :smooth:

raidermatt
10-22-2002, 05:25 PM
Lastly, I know that you (Matt) are only quoting the numbers we have available, but I have been saying all year that the crowds at AK have been higher (in my opinion) on every trip than last year. This weeknd I think the Friday AK crowd rivaled the MK Sunday crowd (for density). I think you'll be seeing that AK isn't the big worry (attendance wise) when new numbers come out.

I don't really disagree, which is why I purposely said "up until this year". But, the three things you mentioned at AK were all there before, and we know attendance was less than stellar before this year.

With DR opening, and JJP running, there's a pretty good chance attendance is better this year, at least in relation to the other three parks. If it is, the question becomes will the addition of DR and re-instituting of a parade sustain that attendance improvement into next year.

Also, with the neglect of Epcot and its subsequent attendance drop, the other three parks are bound to get a bump. AK had the greatest number of additions this year, so it would follow it would do better.

Just speculation, of course, until we see some numbers.

But on to other things...

While I believe two of the 'newbie' groups will probably return to WDW in the future, I don't believe any whole families were converted and I will add that the general cost of things weighed heavy on the group.
Isn't this the ultimate "test" for how the newbies responded? If the new attractions were viewed the same today as the older attractions were, say, 30 years ago, shouldn't their desire to return be greater?

That's what really counts. It isn't whether they like Aladdin more than Pirates or Dumbo. What matters is does Aladdin have the same "hook" for them that Pirates and Dumbo did 40+ years ago. Even Walt himself would one day want to see Pirates be pushed aside by something better, something that "WOW"s the new audience the same way Pirates "WOW"d past audiences.

As for the cost, it appears they didn't feel they were getting as much value as they would like. Meaning either the cost is too high, or the benefit is too low. Again, not the response Disney would hope for, and certainly not a signal that further cost-cutting is in order (at least as it pertains to the guest experience).

You know, that pesky little "long-term guest satisfaction" I keep bringing up, and how it will come back to haunt them if they don't maintain it...

DVC-Landbaron
10-22-2002, 05:51 PM
While I believe two of the 'newbie' groups will probably return to WDW in the future, I don't believe any whole families were converted and I will add that the general cost of things weighed heavy on the group.This has been my point for the two years I have been here. I’ve tried to talk price before, but before I could get a half a post out, someone was there to say that things have always been expensive!

But, my dear Captain, Magic does have a price. And if they set the price too high… Hey! Matt!! Can you take over the thought?
You know, that pesky little "long-term guest satisfaction" I keep bringing up, and how it will come back to haunt them if they don't maintain it...Thanks Matt!! I couldn’t have said it any better myself!!!

BRERALEX
10-22-2002, 06:14 PM
Even Walt himself would one day want to see Pirates be pushed aside by something better, something that "WOW"s the new audience the same way Pirates "WOW"d past audiences.

Oh man you speak the truth and yeah i know he is dead but i think the magic kingdom as we know it, the whole property as we know it would be totally different. I think he would have knocked down a couple of his own old ideas and rebuilt greater and bigger and better. love to throw things out that will never happen :jester:

as for AK attendence are you guys sure it just wasnt really hott over there and you thought you saw more people then you did?

I do hope the attedance is up BUT i doubt it

Captain Crook
10-22-2002, 07:04 PM
You callin' me a liar?:rolleyes:;) ;)

Seriously, AK has had bigger crowds than I have expected on all but one of my visits this year. I know you guys don't want to hear it, but PW especially is doing very well. LK,Tarzan, KRR & KS also are almost always very busy.

I know AK appears busier than some other Parks with less crowds, but I think it's a very happy park and I truly believe it is gaining in popularity...

:smooth: :smooth: :bounce: :smooth: :smooth:

BRERALEX
10-22-2002, 08:23 PM
me call the CROOK a liar? NEVER!!!!

in the end i really hope that attendance has risen. i really do. but i cant find a reason to go back more then once in a 10day trip and the one time i go everyone wants to leave by noon.

its like were missing something goin on in the other parks i dunno

DVC-Landbaron
10-22-2002, 08:33 PM
in the end i really hope that attendance has risen. i really do. but i cant find a reason to go back more then once in a 10day trip and the one time i go everyone wants to leave by noon.Are you in my family?? Or am I in yours? We feel the same way - EXACTLY!!!

hopemax
10-22-2002, 08:48 PM
In 1998, and 2000 my DH and I, went to AK 3 or 4 times each trip. We looked for hidden Mickey's in Pizzafari, we counted animals in the Tree of Life, we watched the otters fishing in the Tree of Life Garden. We played games with Meeko at Conservation Station.

In 2001, I was suprised how little time I wanted to spend at AK. The shows were too familiar, the hidden Mickeys were still in the same place and the line for Kilamanjaro Safaris was long and FP times were hours away. It was a sad realization, that park has so much potential!