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View Full Version : My Open Letter to Disney.....A Loyal Guest Speaks Out


DisneyKidds
04-18-2003, 01:49 PM
Most of you know me. I'll say it...........I am probably one of the bigger Disney aplogists on this board :eek:. I love Disney. We all do. I still think Disney's offerings are unique and of great value. We don't all feel that. But let's put that aside. At this point I can't be removed from car 2 when it comes to Disney's offerings. However.......................

As much as I love Disney, their recent record on relationship management sucks. While I believe what Disney offers is great, although diminished from Disney's heyday, I think Disney takes for granted that their biggest fans will not abandon them, no matter what the company does. That is a mistake.

Is Disney relationship management so integral to the Magic that one cannot seperate it from the existing carpools, or can I still be in car 2 operations wise while I'm falling out of car 3 relationship management wise? I really don't know. As Baron and others might point out, I seem to be having a bit of an identity crisis :crazy:. Anywho, the following is a letter I am sending to Disney to make my feelings know, as it has been a while sinced I bared my Disney soul.............................
April 23, 2003

Ms. Dinah Keefe, Vice President, Disney Relationship Management
The Walt Disney Company
500 South Buena Vista Street
Burbank, CA 91521-0239

Dear Ms. Keefe,

I am writing this letter to you out of my desire to make Disney aware of how its current business practices, and many of its recent decisions, have affected the thoughts and feelings of one of Disney’s biggest fans, and one of Disney’s most loyal customers.

Let me first say that I love Disney. I love the fundamental philosophy on which Walt Disney built the company. I love the vacation experience that WDW provides my family. I love the Disney products and merchandise that have sparked my children’s imagination. We own stock in The Walt Disney Company. We call two of the Disney Vacation Club resorts “home” as we own at both the Villas at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge and Disney’s Boardwalk Villas. My first visit to WDW was in 1972, and my family and I have been visiting WDW two to three times per year for the last twelve years. We currently have Disney reservations for trips in May and November/December. We have been long term members of both the Magic Kingdom Club and the Disney Club. We have been annual pass holders for a number of years. Suffice to say that a good portion of our disposable income is used to purchase a myriad of Disney products, including merchandise, movies, tickets to theatrical releases, etc. We fully expect to visit the California theme parks when time allows, and plan to incorporate a visit to the Paris theme parks when we travel abroad next year. I am confident that you would be hard pressed to find more loyal, long term Disney guests and consumers than myself and my family. I even spend a good portion of my time defending Disney and many of its decisions and actions on numerous internet bulletin boards. It takes a lot for a company to develop the feelings and memories that drive a consumer today to view a company so favorably and be so loyal.

So why the need for this letter? The need is simple. It is becoming more and more apparent to me that Disney doesn’t seem to value, as much today as it did in the past, the loyalty that consumers such as myself have for the company. It doesn’t appear that Disney currently seeks to create and enhance the future brand loyalty that is so important for companies like yours. I have seen many things happen within The Walt Disney Company over the years. I have paid close attention to all things Disney. I pay attention to the state of the WDW theme parks, including hours, attractions, entertainment, maintenance, and pricing, all of these things except for pricing having a negative trend while that pricing has steadily gone in the opposite direction. I pay attention to developments at the Disney resorts and have watched as sections of certain resorts are shut down for periods, while Pop Century will remain unused until the long delayed opening of December 14, 2003. I have watched as Disney has expanded with acquisitions such as the Ducks and Angels, the Family Channel, Go.com, ABC, ESPN, etc., many acquisitions which have not generated positive results for Disney and have eroded the value of Disney stock, lowered Disney bond ratings, and taxed the theme park operations to a great degree. I also realize that Disney is taking steps to refocus on its core business with the recent agreement to sell the Angels and the fact that Disney is attempting to sell the Ducks. Despite all these things I still find myself able to come to the defense of The Walt Disney Company as I know there are too many factors to mention that directly impact all of these operations. Despite all of these things I find myself able to come to Disney’s defense as I continue to find Disney a unique provider of family entertainment and a good (used to be great) value for my dollar.

So, again, why the need for this letter? I feel the need to communicate to you that Disney can not take all of what I say above for granted. I have looked past the reduced operating hours and the lack of exciting, quality additions at the theme parks. I have looked past the decline in maintenance and cleanliness. I have looked past the things that have diverted Disney’s attention from its core business. I have looked past the many things that have directly affected, in a negative way, the traditions of Safety, Courtesy, Show, and Efficiency that Walt Disney founded the Disney theme park business on. I am confident that, as the economy and tourism rebound, Disney will take steps to reverse the negative trends of the recent past. Mission:Space, PhilharMagic, and Mr. Eisner’s informal announcement at the stockholders meeting, and Disney’s subsequent formal announcement on the Animal Kingdom’s fifth anniversary, of the Expedition Everest attraction shows that Disney will continue to invest in major E-ticket attractions, despite the fact that such investment as been too little over the past 5 years. The thing that I am having difficulty looking past now is Disney’s current record and trend on relationship management. Two particular things come to mind as prime examples of Disney’s failure in brand and relationship management, and Disney’s apparent lack of value for customer loyalty.

The first of those items is the discontinuation of the Disney Club and addition of the Disney Bank One Visa Card. While I realize that Disney has not formally announced the Bank One Visa as the ‘official’ replacement for the DC, this has been an extremely disappointing development to me. On a personal note, we have chosen not to apply for this card. We have worked very hard to eliminate credit cards so the last thing I want is another one. Given that the reward points are not as attractive as most other rewards cards and there don't seem to be many Disney Club type discounts attached to this card, I can't see replacing one of my long term, existing, lower interest rate credit cards with this one. From a business perspective, Disney has excluded some of their most loyal guests and has also allowed Bank One to determine which Disney consumers who do apply will have the privilege of taking advantage of whatever discounts are available with this card, discounts that are an unacceptable replacement for the Disney Club. I don’t believe it is in Disney’s long term interest to require customers to apply for a credit card in order for the relationship between Disney and some of its best customers to be recognized. As one of Disney’s most loyal consumers who has chosen not to apply for this credit card, I will no longer have access to some of the discounts on Disney resorts, packages, theme park annual passes, merchandise and dining that I once did. I can live with that if that is the business reality that Disney believes must exist. However, the natural consequence of that is that I may not spend as much on these things in the future as I once did. The negative trends regarding the parks that I noted above, combined with the fact that many discounts will no longer be available to me, have me seriously considering canceling some of my December Disney reservations and spending the majority of that nine day, traditionally Disney, trip at other Orlando area theme parks that seem to be actively trying to increase guest value and develop the guest loyalty that Disney used to be so good at creating. Let me point out that in twelve years of semi-annual trips to Disney I have never felt the need or desire to spend a day outside of the Disney theme parks. It saddens me that I cannot say the same at this moment.

The second item that comes to mind as an example of Disney’s failure to recognize and build upon the brand loyalty that exists for Disney is the situation regarding Disney resort discounts, particularly annual pass holder discounts. I fully realize that owning a Disney annual pass doe s not entitle anyone to resort discounts. Managing the resorts is a complicated process, occupancy rates are a key factor, and discounts will not always be available. I realize that Disney has made numerous discounts available, via the use of discount codes, to those that are aware of how the Disney resorts reservation system works. What is troubling to me is that there are numerous resort discounts being made available to select guests that are greater than any currently available public discounts. These discounts show that current occupancy rates allow for such discounts, yet Disney has chosen to exclude many of their most loyal customers from these discounts, discounts that have traditionally been available to loyal, annual pass holding customers. Even the annual pass holder resort discounts that were released on April 21 do not alleviate this situation as those discounts are not as favorable as other available discounts for a number of resorts. Perhaps Disney feels that these loyal customers are going to continue to spend their money on Disney resorts without being given access to larger discounts that are currently available to others. This is a very dangerous assumption. Case in point is our May trip this year. We will be adding a night to this trip. We would like that night to be at the Grand Floridian. As one of Disney’s most loyal customers who does not have access to the best discounts for the time period, I will not spend that night at the Grand Floridian and will likely take that business off-site. While the recently released annual pass holder discounts might change that, once again Disney has failed to give me a reason to be excited about returning and Disney has shown that they currently appear to have no desire to offer the best available discounts to their most loyal guests.

These are just two symptoms of what I see as a larger problem that is affecting the entire organization. These are just two symptoms of the trend I see for Disney to be so focused on short term profitability and enhancement to the bottom line that the larger picture involving guest value and brand loyalty has completely been obscured. The Disney that many of us fell in love with, the Disney that we know today and owe to Walt Disney, was not built around such a narrow, bottom line focus. In my opinion, Disney should be in the business of giving me reasons to look forward to coming back and giving me more opportunities to feel as though I am part of the Magic. Unfortunately, events of the past few years have me considering other Orlando alternatives and have succeeded in making me feel one more step removed from the Magic. That can’t be the result Disney has been looking for, but it is a reality. All of this is not written in an attempt to have the Disney Club reinstated, or to have annual pass holder discounts match the best available resort rates, or to obtain any particular discount. Rather, as someone who loves Disney and all it stands for, I feel the need to communicate how many of the Disney decisions of the recent past have a real effect on the goodwill and positive feelings that lifelong Disney fans have toward the company. There are many more things that I could reference that are indicative of Disney’s tendency to depart from those actions and policies that have created such loyalty to Disney in the past. Should you desire to discuss those I’d be happy to do so.

In the end, my family will continue to enjoy our visits to Disney. However, the trends and actions I reference make me worry about the future of The Walt Disney Company as I don’t know if we will visit Disney as much if those trends continue. Unfortunately, I am not alone in that thinking. I shared my thoughts and this letter on one of the Disney internet discussion boards that I frequent and dozens of people indicated their desire to put their name to this very letter. Those people are just the tip of the iceberg of people that have these feelings. I thank you for taking the time to read this letter and hope that you value this input from one of Disney’s biggest fans. Given that I still love Disney, I only want to see The Walt Disney Company be as successful in the future as it has been in the past, as I’m sure you do.

Sincerely,


Cc:

Mr. Robert A. Iger
President
The Walt Disney Company
500 South Buena Vista Street
Burbank, CA 91521-1062

Mr. Andrew Mooney
President, Disney Consumer Products Worldwide
500 South Buena Vista Street
Burbank, CA 91521-6922

Mr. Roy E. Disney
Vice Chairman
The Walt Disney Company
500 South Buena Vista Street
Burbank, CA 91521-4873
Mr. Marty Sklar
Vice Chairman & Principal Creative Executive
Walt Disney Imagineering
1401 Flower Street
Glendale, CA 91221

Mr. Michael Eisner
Chairman & Chief Executive Officer
The Walt Disney Company
500 South Buena Vista Street
Burbank, CA 91521-4873

Mr. Jay Rasulo
Chairman & President
Walt Disney Parks & Resorts
500 South Buena Vista Street
Burbank, CA 91521-4873

Mr. Al Weiss
President
The Walt Disney World Resort
PO Box 10040
Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830

Mr. Lee Cockerell
Executive Vice President of Walt Disney World Operations
1375 Buena Vista Drive
Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830-1000

Ms. Erin Wallace
Vice President
The Walt Disney World Resort
PO Box 10040
Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830

Mr. Karl Holz
Vice President
The Walt Disney World Resort
PO Box 10040
Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830

If you took the time to read.............bless you.

mikeymars
04-18-2003, 01:58 PM
A powerful, wonderful letter to someone who (based on my personal experience with her) will read it and respond intelligently. Hopefully, your efforts will have the impact they deserve.

Bless you!!!!!!

KNWVIKING
04-18-2003, 02:13 PM
Better use two stamps.

d-r
04-18-2003, 02:19 PM
certify it

grinningghost
04-18-2003, 03:12 PM
A very well written letter. I really hope you get a response. Keep us posted.

DemoBri1
04-18-2003, 03:15 PM
DisneyKidds,

I feel your pain with this letter, but I do have to disagree on how you worded your letter. It is my feeling that this letter will not have the impact that it could have had if it were worded in a different manner.

For instance, you talk about the fact that you will not have access to some of the resort discounts because they are only available to holders of the Disney card. You are correct in that fact, but you also have the ability to apply for the card and obtain those discounts. Whether right or wrong, this is how that will be viewed in the eyes of corporate America today. We are not dealing with the "Boys in the Backroom" corporate types of the '50s, '60s, and '70s. We are dealing with ruthless, shrewd business executives whose sole mission is the dreaded "bottom-line".

I am a holder of Disney stock as you may or may not be. I have shuddered that the amount of money I have lost with regards to the recent downturn in the value of the company's stock. Yes, I too wonder why the heck Universal can spend so much money on their rides while Disney does nothing, or next to nothing. But then again, you also have to look at the teetering financial condition that Universal's parent company has been in for the better part of two years now. Constant rumblings of selling whereas I have yet to here anything regarding the possible sale of Disney.

That said, I do hope that you're letter does not fall on deaf ears, but...we all have been dealt a healthy helping of reality in the last 2-3 years to last us a lifetime.

Good Luck.

Brian

DisneyKidds
04-18-2003, 03:58 PM
It is my feeling that this letter will not have the impact that it could have had if it were worded in a different manner.
Perhaps. I've learned to take some time between writing such letters and mailing them. I'll give it a fresh read later before I put the stamp on. I do want to come across as someone who is concerned for the company, and not just for discounts I think I should be getting.
Whether right or wrong, this is how that will be viewed in the eyes of corporate America today. We are not dealing with the "Boys in the Backroom" corporate types of the '50s, '60s, and '70s. We are dealing with ruthless, shrewd business executives whose sole mission is the dreaded "bottom-line".
A loyal customer shouldn't have to apply for a credit card, with a real possibility of being denied due of a profitability formula as opposed to credit worthiness, to have the relationship with the company be recognized, especially since it had been recognized prior to the credit card being offered. It very much should matter whether it is right or wrong, as great companies are not built solely on the bottom line mentality of todays execs. I'll try to be sure that is clear if it isn't already.That said, I do hope that you're letter does not fall on deaf ears, but...we all have been dealt a healthy helping of reality in the last 2-3 years to last us a lifetime.
Deaf mouse ears or not (which I assume they will be), at least you have to speak up now and again. Not that I haven't in the past, but it has been a while since I have officially stood on my soapbox with Disney.

crusader
04-18-2003, 04:22 PM
Mr. Kidds -

Great letter. Very well said and heartfelt.

You are absolutely right - the Company needs to do alot more to show the loyal customer they are valued.

Bob O
04-18-2003, 04:30 PM
Great letter!!!! Well done job!!!!
Now lets see what kind of response you get from it, a form letter or someone who rides it and thinks about it before replying.

lenshanem
04-18-2003, 04:44 PM
I agree with the letter. I have in the past year sent several emails with troubling concerns addressing poor service that we have experienced. I never have had to do that before. Only two of my emails were answered - one positively, the other with no resolution.
I have a deep love for WDW, but I do worry about the future. I have even looked into Universal's new resorts as alternatives, thinking ahead to Universal parks and Sea World as vacation alternatives to our usual trips down, when I had never given those parks a second thought before.
It all started with the poor attention to cleanliness and maintenance. I clearly remember a time we were in Toontown. I looked up and saw a sign that looked covered in mildew, rust and faded away... I couldn't believe it. MK was the place my parents took me to each year and I always remembered it being so clean, sparkling, fresh...Not like Six Flags on a bad day.
I guess they thought people would come regardless of the cutbacks. Seems they still don't understand and blame it all on the state of the times....
Well, in my opinion if you want people to come you make it more inviting - advertise more shows, longer hours, ticket specials, resort discounts...
Instead they are cutting back and turning even the people that loyally come away.
It is amazing to me that such a huge company could be so way off the mark?
I, too have seen our stock once split was it four times? to being worth next to nothing...
I've been looking into DVC, but there is that nagging fear that WDW will continue to go down in demise....

Please keep us posted. I would LOVE to hear if they write you back and if they do how "vague" their response will be.

DebbieB
04-18-2003, 05:50 PM
What is troubling to me is that there are numerous resort discounts being made available to those who hold the new Visa card that cannot be obtained by any other means.

The current Disney Visa room discount code matches other codes available to everyone. CZF (Visa) & AEA (anyone) are the same discount, $25 off value, $50 off moderate, $100 off deluxe.

meiandrew
04-18-2003, 05:53 PM
Amazing letter !!! Bless YOU for taking the time to put your feeling into words. We felt the same way about the Disney Visa, and also did not apply. We always felt a little special being MKC members. I dont feel that way about having another credit card. We just renewed our AP's because we love Disney too much.
I hope your letter makes it easier for us to renew again next year !

:bounce:

:)

winniedapooh
04-18-2003, 06:18 PM
Excellent and well thought out letter. I totally agree with you on the VISA card issue. I myself have written to Disney 3 times for a variety of room problems I had had and heard back from the same person, and to my satsifaction may I add, each time. I hope you are as lucky and are heard as well as listened to.

Faith, trust, and pixie dust to you!

Susiesnowflake
04-18-2003, 07:35 PM
What a great letter! Can I sign too?

pouncingpluto
04-18-2003, 07:45 PM
Regarding the Visa card, not everyone really has the option of getting one. I am a current Disney Club member. I made some mistakes with money in college, and at age 25, those aren't all cleared up yet. I would probably not be accepted for the card, and applying for one and being rejected would cause my credit rating to go down further, which is something I'm not willing to risk.

So I agree... a credit card with perks is most definitely not an adequate substitute for a discount club card.

freediverdude
04-18-2003, 08:19 PM
Great letter- I wish we could send a whole list of signatures of AP holders, DVC members, etc.

luvindisneyworld
04-18-2003, 11:06 PM
Great Letter:p

faithinkarma
04-18-2003, 11:38 PM
I wanted to stand at my computer and applaud. What a heartfelt letter ! You speak for so many of us. Wish there was a way we COULD all sign. Wouldn't it be wonderful if we could get their attention and make them listen?

margaritabnl
04-19-2003, 07:43 AM
I agree 100% with this letter! While I am not a Disney Visa card holder, DVC member or AP holder, I feel I am not getting anything near fair value for a WDW vacation.

My upcoming trip in May will be our fifth. If I had bought cancellation insurance I would have rescheduled for a better time with more of the offerings Disney has to make the experience that much more special. Specifically, longer hours, fireworks, and the parades.

While room rates and ticket costs have increased, I, and the public, are faced with fewer offerings with ABSOLUTELY NO CHANGE IN PRICE! Where is the logic and value in that?! It amazes me that Disney will charge @ $50 per park for 3-4 fewer hours access under the assumption I will spend my money at the resort instead of in the park. I can only speak for myself but that will not be the case. I will make a grocery store stop and load up on drinks and munchies for the resort instead of giving them more money.

And you mention discounts via cards and email. I have never once received such an offering. What is the criteria for this? Do you need to visit 2-3 times a year? If I had been offered these discounts it is HIGHLY likely I would have come down there for vacation once a year instead of every other year.

This entire vacation started out with such high hopes because of all the past experiences we had there were incredible. Now I just want to go and get it over with because I feel I am being cheated.
My 2005 vacation will not be to WDW but to an Caribbean island or Europe. And most definitely NOT Disney Paris!

What is most sad for me is that being a travel agent, I don't feel my customers will get what they pay for with a Disney vacation. I would not hesitate to suggest a vacation alternative. Disney has lost a customer in me personally, and as a salesperson for their company. And I think that is most telling as to their current state of operation. *Falling off my soapbox now*

DisneyKidds
04-19-2003, 09:49 AM
Originally posted by DebbieB
The current Disney Visa room discount code matches other codes available to everyone. CZF (Visa) & AEA (anyone) are the same discount, $25 off value, $50 off moderate, $100 off deluxe.
Yes, I realize that and clarified the letter a little more. With respect to resort discounts, it really is the email and postcard rates that offer the best discount. As for Visa discounts, while the resort discounts may not be the deepest, whatever other discounts are offered appear to be a replacement for the Disney Club, and that is wrong IMHO.
And you mention discounts via cards and email. I have never once received such an offering. What is the criteria for this?
I haven't a clue, but customer loyalty appears to have nothing to do with it. We are about as regular customers as you can find. That is probably WHY we have never gotten such an offer. They figure were coming anyway so why offer the best discount. That is no way to reward your best customers.

sitchu2
04-20-2003, 08:07 AM
Great letter, I couldnt agree with you more, and I find myself in many of the same situations as you mentioned. I like to visit semi-anually, carry the ap and own dvc, but depend on the ap rates to extend my trips. ect...

What I think is really obsurd is the fact that disney is advertising this visa on tv in my area as a means for kids to get to wdw, my daughter has actrally told me to make sure I buy everything with the disney visa now, when the fact is if we spend 30,000 on the card we will only have earned 300 magical points, not even enough to purchase one 7 day park hopper or anual pass!!

Another point that I dont understand is why they are not more eager to fill the resorts with discounted stays to loyal customers. The fact is the largest part of my wdw vacation budget is alloted to eating. The prices in the resturants are extremely overinflated, however this is one area that I have accepted and wrote it off to enjoying the great themeing while being on vacation.

Our family will continue to visit disney in the future, but we have now chosen a rccl cruise over disney for the value issue, and we are debating whether to visit universal the week before or return to wdw.

I am really feeling the need to be reminded why I became so loyal and attached to wdw vacations, and I cannot wait to hear the response your letter will bring.

Thank you for expressing what so many of us feel.

caseymaureen
04-20-2003, 11:25 AM
DisneyKidds~ After reading your letter (very well written I must say!) and the responces from our fellow boarders, I thought I might make a suggestion. It is totally your decision since it is your letter, but I think adding a kind of petition to the end would make a little more of an impact than a one-person letter. Maybe say something at the end like "and all of these people, fellow Disney fans, former Disney club members, DVC owners, and loyal Disney guests, and even a few former cast members agree with me..." Totally up to you, but as one of the mentioned former cast members I know that they pay a lot more attention to a large group with a common problem than a single person. They kind of look at a one person project as a troublemaker and a group as somewhat more valid. If you decide to add this, sign me up! My name is Casey Humphreys, a stock owner, and former CM, and my mother, another poster and DVC owner, stock owner, Disney club member, and all around Disney fan, is Leslie Humphreys (leslieh.) God bless you for writing your letter. I wish you the best in getting the responce you deserve, and I hope they take you seriously and make a difference!

leanne2255
04-20-2003, 11:53 AM
I agree with Caseymaureen. If you are looking for signatures, count me in! My family visits WDW semi-annually, and we are DVC owners. It pains me to see that loyal customers such as ourselves get NOTHING for our loyalty. There will be a great uprising of Disney fans, soon, and they will be sorry that they did not treat us better.

BCVOwner2002
04-20-2003, 11:55 AM
Great letter! Please let us know if you hear from anyone. Annmarie

JeffH
04-20-2003, 02:30 PM
but you also have the ability to apply for the card and obtain those discounts.
Only if you get the card. A card like this requires almost perfect credit.
I was denied despite the facts that I've owned my home for over 12 years, have held a professional job with the government for over 20 years, making good money have been already accepted for 4 major credit cards (including Discover) and purposely closed one of the 4 in hopes that I could then get another 4th (the Disney Card), not wanting to be accused of having too much credit. 2 of my cards have a $0 balance, and the other card varies greatly depending on when the last (large) payment was made.

Although I really wanted to have a Disney Card (since my whole life revolves around Disney here in car#1), it doesn't really matter since my main card (Discover) gives me 1% back in cash to use as I please, instead of as a Disney 'discount'. It, again, is Disney's loss.

turbodisney
04-20-2003, 05:18 PM
Great letter DisneyKidds.

It used to be the mark of a great company when they took care of their customers. But now it seems like most companies are trying to please the shareholders on Wall Street. Its called "enhancing shareholder value". And it's not a long term concern either, just what have you done for me this "quarter".

I love Disney to and hate to see it spiral inward on itself. Shorter hours cause people not to go, cause resorts not to be filled, cause the bottom line not to be good, cause cancellation of new rides, with nothing new, causes people not to go...etc...

I am going in June and hope to have a good time. I hope the hours are long and the lines are thin... I got an upgrade to WL cause POFQ is closed. I will go back to POFQ as soon as its opened back up. Its a great place and its a good value for us.

With the corporate mentality these days...we are lucky they built Animal Kingdom when they did....I guess the time of the 90's wasnt so bad after all...even with a Dem in the White House..lol

cindyfan
04-20-2003, 06:36 PM
Great letter!!
Add my name to the list if you choose to do so!

Goofyposter
04-20-2003, 07:11 PM
WONDERFUL Letter!!! :):):)

I did do the visa thing....but I SOOOooooo agree with you about it being a mistake to nuke MKC/TDC .... people WANT to feel APART of "the Disney Family".....a credit card...simply doesnot inspire the feeling of a 'connection'...in fact...after reading some responses...I worry it could do the opposite....a lot of people have had/do have bad experiences with credit cards...I mean really..who likes to get the 'magical' month mailing from their credit card company??? vs. the Disney Magazine etc.

ALSO in regards to the petition idea....it seems to me that there are some sites on the internet that allow for people to set up on line petitions for others to 'sign'....I think I seen some before....if so...perhaps you could set one up and get it running before you mail the letter...and include the URL for it in your letter?

Thanks for putting in words some of what has been running thur my goofy head! :)

DisneyKidds
04-20-2003, 10:05 PM
Its called "enhancing shareholder value".
Somewhere along the line Disney forgot that taking care of their customers IS the best way to "enhance shareholder value". I hope they remember that soon.

smjj
04-20-2003, 11:31 PM
Great letter. I want to sign too. As a family who has been going to Disney for several years now, we can see the steady decline from year to year. This last trip was an eye opener for both my wife and I. After hearing friends rant and rave about Universal and their new onsite resorts, we have decided our next trip will be there and not Disney. I can't believe we are doing this but Disney has cut back on sooooo many things that it simply does not have the magic it once had. Walt is probably rolling over in his grave now due to what Eisner has done to Disney and if he were alive today he would not stand for what has happened to Disney. They have forgotten who butters their bread(us repeat quest and our positive feedback to others)..smjj

winniedapooh
04-21-2003, 10:53 AM
You can sign me up as well should you choose!

phyllis1966
04-21-2003, 11:28 AM
Bravo! Bravo! Bravo!

Your letter is well thought-out and appropriately moving - please keep us posted on the response! Like many others, I'd loved to have my name on the bottom of this letter.

ghostwriter
04-21-2003, 01:26 PM
I was totally blown away by your letter.
I have had the same feeling for a long time.
I would like to know how many mistakes they are going to let Eisner get away with.
You just can't keep taking away from your loyal customers.
I don't know if this crossed your mind but take one look what he did to the Disney Stores.
There is nothing to buy in there for adults. They are shutting down the stores at a alarming rate.
There is power in numbers......... Lets stick together

margaritabnl
04-21-2003, 06:13 PM
Wanna hear a real doozy?! To me, this speaks VOLUMES about Disney and their interpretation of customer service.

I am an outside sales travel agent in MA and booked myself on a WDW Travel Co. package to CSR 5/3-5/10. I booked from home, made my notes as usual like I would in the office and my faxed confirmation sent to the office WAS NOT ANYTHING NEAR what the res. agent told me!

I requested waterview, ground floor, link my reservation with my sister's etc. and connecting air through Washington DC is what I requested and received verbal confirmation for when I reserved. Faxed confirmation I picked up from the office was STD view, ground floor, no mention of linking my sisters reservation, and connecting air through New York with a 3 hour layover coming home! The difference was so drastic I asked the customer service rep to confirm the names!

The explanation I received today was a joke. They had no idea why the res. was so messed up, informed me CSR waterview is sold out as well as the entire resort, they could change my flight coming back for $100 per ticket (with my family losing the last day at the parks for a much earlier flight), and worst of all, offered NO APOLOGY! I pay the same for a package as many of you do. I never use the travel agent wild card for discounts as I think that skews a resort critique.

I told the manager I was coming down there specifically to critique the resort and I was not off to a great start. He told me he would make note of that in the computer. He said the best I could hope for was a cancellation for a waterview and that if it happened, I could upgrade at checkin for $15 more per night.

Just another shining example of WDW customer service!!!!!!!!! But at least I have some leverage other people might not have. Very simply, I will suggest my clients go somewhere else when they inquire about a Disney package as I feel they do not get what they pay for. The value just isn't there anymore and their money could be better spent, and MORE APPRECIATED, elsewhere! *swan dive off my soap box now.......*:mad:

mommabear01
04-21-2003, 07:30 PM
I am a Disney cast member, and unfortunately have to speak directly with Disney Club member who speak of their anxietiesin Disney. It upsets me soooo much that Disney has taken this step and have alienated so many of their loyal and most loving fans. I hope that they will soon see ALL the errors that they have made recently. GOOD LUCK and BLESS YOU!!!!

Queeni512
04-21-2003, 11:51 PM
Wonderful letter! I agree on just about every point! Although I have never been a Disney Club member, I have had a Seasonal AP, am a member of the Disney Dining Experience, and am a Florida resident (and am an avid pin-collector-geek). For the past two years I have visited WDW on an average of once per month (staying at least one night but usually more), often times twice per month. I have always used some type of discount when booking my on-site accomodations. I have always insisted upon staying on-site due to themeing and convenience. This all changed in February................

I was able to attend a special event in the beginning of Feb. I stayed only one night at the Coronado Springs Resort--cost--about $93 including tax. I decided to meet my parents in WDW for Valentine's weekend two weeks later. I called to get a reservation and was told that Valentine's weekend is a holiday weekend and there are NO discounts available to anyone!! The same room I had just stayed in would be $169 + tax!!!:( This just felt wrong (like a slap in the face--I have spent an average of 3 nights per month in an on-site hotel room for the past two years!!), so I decided to stay off-property for the first time ever. We stayed at the Hotel Royal Plaza and really enjoyed it! Very comfy beds, much bigger and nicer rooms and bathrooms (a huge roman tub with shower and Bath and Body Works toiletries), better cable, iron/ironing board, coffee maker with coffee, a twin size pull out sofa bed, and a short walt to DTD--cost $101/per night including tax!!

I decided to take another weekend trip with my guy on the weekend of 4/12--once again--a holiday weekend and absolutely NO discounts of any kind! I decided to take a chance on Priceline.com and PRANG!!!! A room at the Wyndham Palace Resort and Spa for $78.08 including tax! This resort was amazing! Once again, upgraded toiletries, a hair dryer, coffee maker with coffee, iron/ironing board, honor bar, the most comfortable bed and pillows I have ever slept on (even better than our own bed :p), many great restaurant AND spa options, when you close the drapes the room is very dark, and less than a 5 minute walk to DTD!!! This is our most favorite hotel yet!!

I am not complaining about not receiving a discount. I just think that kind of loyalty should be taken better care of. Thanks to WDW's lack of discounts we have discovered some much nicer accomodations for MUCH more competitive rates not so far off property. I have actually tried Priceline again for the next vacation and managed to book a room at the Dolphin for a great rate. We will also be staying at the Yacht Club--since my nephew requested a stay "At that one place with the really cool waterslide and pool!!"

I am not getting down on Disney, but they opened a previously unnoticed door for us by not having any discounts available and we are very pleased with what we have found on the other side. I will still occassionally stay at a Disney Resort, but have found that slightly off property can be even better than on property. We are hoping to try the Gaylord Palms Resort and the Hyatt Grand Cypress Resort in the near future. This cliche comes to mind, "When given a lemon, turn it into lemonade!"

If you have actually read all of this--I am sorry for getting somewhat off-topic, but I think my post follows along the same lines as the letter written and many of the previous replies.

Please keep us posted on any replies regarding your letter!!

Thank you and my regards to all,
Kim

DVC-Landbaron
04-22-2003, 12:31 AM
Hi-a Mr. Kidds!!!

I’m back! And the first thread I went to was your letter. Very nice indeed! Now, if you really want to keep to your car-2 moniker, I’ll play along. But I gotta tell you; this letter could have been written by me. And to further the point, your most recent post: Somewhere along the line Disney forgot that taking care of their customers IS the best way to "enhance shareholder value". I hope they remember that soon. … can be found – VERBATUM – in the second paragraph of the “Official LandBaron Manifesto of All Things Disney”!!

Still, if you wanna be a two-er – SO BE IT!!! ;););) It'll be our little secret!! ;););)

Anyway!! Congratulations!! Great letter. And I have NOTHING to add. Send it.

Here's an unsolicited tip: use way more "cc"'s than you did. I'd suggest sending it to 5 or 6 people including some at WDW.Ditto!


OH MY GOD!!! I agree with Mr. Kidds AND Scoop in the same thread!!! :crazy: I must still have pixie dust on the brain!!!

d-r
04-22-2003, 09:38 AM
I wish that all of the folks who have said "me too" would write a little letter of their own.

mikeymars
04-22-2003, 11:43 AM
>>Here's an unsolicited tip: use way more "cc"'s than you did. I'd suggest sending it to 5 or 6 people including some at WDW.<<

I sent the original author of the letter the list of Disney management I used when I sent my letters complaining about the problematic implementation of the Bank One VISA program. If she used it (she may have), trust me, that letter WILL have a major impact. :smooth:

DisneyKidds
04-22-2003, 11:51 AM
If she used it (she may have), trust me, that letter WILL have a major impact.
That would be 'he' ;) (what, did you think only a woman could have written such a letter :)), and I am using your list, as well as a few other names from Baron's contact list at the top of the board. Thanks.

Sarangel
04-22-2003, 12:08 PM
As much as I approve of Mr. Kidds' letter, I feel obligated to point out that it is against DIS policy to organize petitions. By all means, if you are dissatisfied with Disney's service or anything else, please make use of the addresses at the top of this board, but please refrain from trying to set up petitions...

Many Thanks,

Sarangel

DisneyKidds
04-22-2003, 12:29 PM
As much as I approve of Mr. Kidds' letter, I feel obligated to point out that it is against DIS policy to organize petitions.
I very much appreciate that, Sarangel. That is why I haven't commented on doing that. Should I desire to find a way to add more voices to this letter I will arrange it outside of the DIS. Thanks.

mikeymars
04-22-2003, 01:57 PM
>>That would be 'he' (what, did you think only a woman could have written such a letter ), and I am using your list, as well as a few other names from Baron's contact list at the top of the board. Thanks.<<

Sorry, no presumption on my part, just not paying enough attention :o .

Do let us know if Ms. Keefe sends a response, and if so, not just the nature of it but also the "sense of urgency' attached to it (she responded to my complaints about the implementation of the VISa program via FedEx, and copied everyone I had cc-ed).

deirdrefitch
04-22-2003, 02:20 PM
I sent an e-mail to Disney Saturday afternoon pointing out some of these same facts. I received an e-mail yesterday that by letter was being reviewed by executives at Disney, and would be contacted in the next couple of days.

d-r
04-22-2003, 02:53 PM
Sara-
I am sorry if I sounded like I was trying to organize a pettition or letter campaign i waa hust thinking outloud- sorry.

DR

Sarangel
04-22-2003, 03:15 PM
There have been several people who have mentioned wanting to turn this into a petition, hence the reminder that individual letters are OK, but using the DIS to organize petitions isn't. None of my comments were aimed at any specific individual.

Saragel

Minniemomof4
04-22-2003, 03:37 PM
I just wanted to add my appreciation for you taking the time to actually compose a letter including the thoughts that many of us hold. Our family of 6 has also taken multiple trips each year to WDW, always staying onsite. We are considering trying one of the beautiful new Universal resorts this fall instead of or at least in addition to our regular trip.
I always thought it would be a great idea for Disney to keep some sort of "point system" for those of us who are loyal WDW visitors. Something like they do at the resorts in Las Vegas.....I know my parents have received a free night at the Luxor here and there just because they always stay there, dine there, spend money there.
Just wishful thinking I guess !

DISNEYBIGGDOGG
04-22-2003, 04:48 PM
GREAT LETTER!!!!!!!!!!
PLEASE INFORM US OF THEIR RESPONSE, ALTHOUGH IT MAY TAKE A WHILE. AS A DISNEY VET, I AM LOOKING FORWARD TO THEIR RESPONSE. I FIND IT REDICULOUS THAT WE NEED TO GET A HIGH INTEREST CREDIT CARD IN ORDER TO RECEIVE RESORT DICOUNTS :( :eek: :Pinkbounc :confused:

margaritabnl
04-22-2003, 04:51 PM
If a petition is set up please send me an email outside of DIS (as requested :D ) so that I can add my name.

I just returned from the travel agency I do outside sales for and spoke to the owner about my reservation probelms and subsequent conversation with WDW Travel Co. He is beyond furious and put a call in to their management and the local sales rep. highlighting my treatment and in general, the lack of service with WDW Travel Co. Apparently, all of their April school vacation bookings (this week) were so messed up by WDW Travel Co. the agency I work for rebooked over 200 passengers at their own expense just to get them to Disney as scheduled.

Maybe Eisner should divest Disney of all the companies they purchased in the heyday of the 90's and focus on Disney alone. To me, it seems the Disney company has lost sight of what made them so huge and successful in the first place. Ditch the sports teams and ABC TV (and all the shameless self promotion!) and go back to tourism, hospitality, and family movies!

DisneyKidds
04-22-2003, 05:01 PM
I FIND IT REDICULOUS THAT WE NEED TO GET A HIGH INTEREST CREDIT CARD IN ORDER TO RECEIVE RESORT DICOUNTS
To be fair to Disney, you don't have to have the credit card to get resort discounts. However, the credit card is replacing the DC which is one of the first available discounts for those who like to book early, and a good source of package discounts. Resort discounts can be obtained by using various codes that are made available to the general public. My biggest problem with the resort discounts is that Disney chooses not to reward their most loyal customers with the best discounts when occupancy allows. Disney is more interested in generating new quests, by offering them email and postcard rates, than keeping the existing repeat visitors very happy. Two different strategies I suppose, but given that Disney attendance has been in decline it looks like the new visitors aren't coming in droves and Disney might benefit from continuing to recognize their loyal guests. Disney did just release annual passholder rates. However, while some of these rates are very good, they still don't match many of the email and postcard rates that are out there.

While there may be other sources for certain discounts that the DC offers, the credit card may be the only replacement for others, if there is a replacement at all. I believe that is a short sighted move on Disney's part.

ghostwriter
04-22-2003, 10:46 PM
I have just one comment. Why couldn't they honor their discounts with the Disney Credit Card.
It could take the place of the Disney Club card if only they would attach the 10% discount on merchandise and resort discounts.
Seems to me someone is greedy.

sitchu2
04-23-2003, 01:41 PM
I was just thinking about the credit card as well, and after reading the last post I thought of what would have been a wonderful win/win situation.

Keep the disney club and collect the anual fee, give the option if you are interested and credit worthy of having the disney club credit card with all the functions of the disney club, plus a credit line with reward points.

I bet they probalby just wanted to do away with the disney club, it was probably just not profitable. When I use that card I feel like the disney store managers are annoyed with the extra discount it gives, and even on disneystore.com it does not allow me to combine my dc discount with any other offer.

noblemickey
04-24-2003, 09:41 AM
I too am a loyal Disney customer. This despite the obvious lack of attention to WDW in terms of cleanliness, new E attractions, hours and even courtesy. Your letter is right to the point and in my opinion, outstanding. Your willingness to give credit when credit is due and criticize where necessary is an appropriate way of getting our points across without being obnoxious.

Nancybell
04-25-2003, 03:27 PM
This was a very well written letter. Many of us true Disney fans understand and agree with your feelings. Just wanted to say I do appreciate your concerns as I have felt them as well.

Please share any response this letter may bring.

Thanks,

Nancybell

DisneyKidds
04-25-2003, 03:36 PM
Please share any response this letter may bring.
Will do! After some tweaking to reflect some recent developments, the letter went in the mail yesterday to 10 people within the Disney organization. I'll let everyone know what kind of response I get, if any.

Beachangel
04-26-2003, 08:35 PM
The intent of the letter comes from the heart, but I think its too long, I hope Ms. Keefe's assistant doesn't think so too! ;)

DisneyKidds
04-27-2003, 01:43 AM
Originally posted by Beachangel
The intent of the letter comes from the heart, but I think its too long, I hope Ms. Keefe's assistant doesn't think so too! ;)
Well, let's look at the real intent. Seeing as I expect little to no meaningful response, the true intent was to allow myself to do my part to go on record in an attempt to make myself heard :crazy:. I allowed myself to get some things off my chest, and I feel better :). As such, the length of the letter was perfect (when it comes to accomplishing that goal). Whether Ms. Keefe's assistant feels that way is somewhat irrelevant......................but one can only hope someone is listening.

Beachangel
04-28-2003, 03:31 PM
Posted by DisneyKidds:
Originally posted by Beachangel:
The intent of the letter comes from the heart, but I think its too long, I hope Ms. Keefe's assistant doesn't think so too! ;) Well, let's look at the real intent. Seeing as I expect little to no meaningful response, the true intent was to allow myself to do my part to go on record in an attempt to make myself heard http://disboards.com/images/smilies/silly.gif. I allowed myself to get some things off my chest, and I feel better :) . As such, the length of the letter was perfect (when it comes to accomplishing that goal). Whether Ms. Keefe's assistant feels that way is somewhat irrelevant......................but one can only hope someone is listening.


Well if the letter was meant to be therapeutic, then you were successful. You are very articulate and I enjoy reading your posts. I just hope someone is willingly to read the letter long enough to give you a thoughtful reply. :D

Nancybell
04-28-2003, 03:45 PM
This letter was so well written my hat goes off to you! I, too, have had issues/concerns with service and cleanliness from my last two visits and I have written letters - one has been answered and one unanswered. Maybe they saw my two complaints and thought that's all I did. Not the case - for the last 20 years I've been going to Disney and have only written two letters in that time - not so bad. I do believe their lack of attn to detail will cost them down the road. You can't expect for this to go unnoticed when so many of us our Disney Fanatics and do pay attn. to detail. It's all the "extras" that make the MAGIC - so they MUST start LISTENING and take some of our advice to continue to be successful. I hope they listen to you.

Nancybell

C.Ann
04-28-2003, 07:57 PM
Originally posted by Nancybell
This letter was so well written my hat goes off to you! I, too, have had issues/concerns with service and cleanliness from my last two visits and I have written letters - one has been answered and one unanswered. Maybe they saw my two complaints and thought that's all I did. Not the case - for the last 20 years I've been going to Disney and have only written two letters in that time - not so bad. I do believe their lack of attn to detail will cost them down the road. You can't expect for this to go unnoticed when so many of us our Disney Fanatics and do pay attn. to detail. It's all the "extras" that make the MAGIC - so they MUST start LISTENING and take some of our advice to continue to be successful. I hope they listen to you.

Nancybell

-----------------

Finally! Someone besides ME who has noticed the "cleanliness" issue.. Every time I have brought it up on these boards the overwhelming response was "I didn't see any cleanliness issues."
Well - the first time I ever went to Disney World the thing that amazed me the absolute most was the CLEANLINESS!! I actually felt like I had landed on another planet or something.. I simply could NOT fathom how such a huge palce - filled with SO many people - could be that CLEAN - but it WAS..

Then - I went to Disney World with my DD, her DH, and my not-quite-three-year-old granddaughter in September of 2001 - and was astonished to see how much the parks had changed.. Dirty rest rooms, overflowing trash cans, litter in the waterways, litter all over the ground, peeling paint on the buildings.. Once again I felt like I had landed on another planet - only THIS wasn't the CLEAN one! Other things had changed as well, but the cleanliness was the thing that really struck a chord with me.. The final straw came when I saw a street sweeper being totally chewed out by a supervisor because she was sweeping up litter that wasn't in her "assigned" area!!

I'm almost afraid of what I'll see when I return next December.. Maybe by then they'll be handing brooms and dust pans to the "guests" as they're going through the gates..:(

sherry8253
04-28-2003, 11:21 PM
Great letter. I send Disney an email that was similiar but not nearly as well written as yours. I received a phone call back from them telling me that they did put AP rates out and that there would continue to be AP rates as well as discounted rates for the general public. Please let us know what response you received.

SnackyStacky
04-29-2003, 10:06 AM
Well, let's look at the real intent. Seeing as I expect little to no meaningful response, the true intent was to allow myself to do my part to go on record in an attempt to make myself heard .

Perhaps that should have been written in there too. Oy. It really bothers me that a company that was founded upon guest satisfaction is now reduced to not being able to answer someone who takes the time to write a 2-3 page missive about how much they care about the company!!!!!!

Kidds, I finally agree with you on something! I envy how well you are able to verbalize your sentiments. (Even if I personally CAN'T look past:

the reduced operating hours and the lack of exciting, quality additions at the theme parks ... the decline in maintenance and cleanliness ... the things that have diverted Disney’s attention from its core business ... the many things that have directly affected, in a negative way, the traditions of Safety, Courtesy, Show, and Efficiency that Walt Disney founded the Disney theme park business on.

) :cool:

I'm anxious to hear what Baron has to say about your letter, and about how his trip there went.

DisneyKidds
04-29-2003, 10:30 AM
I'm anxious to hear what Baron has to say about your letter, and about how his trip there went.
Our good friend Baron has weighed in once, and claims this letter to be proof of my membership in car 3 :eek:. I heard from him about a week ago. I assume that the pixie dust hasn't quite worn off yet, so he is refraining from posting lest he have too many positive things to say. That is what I'm hoping, for the alternative is that he has returned too disgusted to even talk about it. Who knows, maybe he isn't even back yet. We'll just have to wait for that state of the World address.
It really bothers me that a company that was founded upon guest satisfaction is now reduced to not being able to answer someone who takes the time to write a 2-3 page missive about how much they care about the company!!!!!!
I really hope this isn't the case and I do hear something back, but I'm not expecting any great response. The letter wen't out last week and it I'm sure it will take some time if I do get a response. I'll keep you posted.

freediverdude
04-29-2003, 08:09 PM
I keep seeing these references to "car 1, car 2, car 3" in posts- can someone tell me what that's all about?

betterlatethannever
04-29-2003, 09:50 PM
Originally posted by freediverdude
I keep seeing these references to "car 1, car 2, car 3" in posts- can someone tell me what that's all about?

If you go to the top of the Rumors and News Board, there is an "Important" thread that has the difinitions.

Saying that, there are few people that fit a particular car's profile completely. They don't have to have be my super Pooh size in order to spread between two or more cars.;)

freediverdude
04-29-2003, 09:58 PM
Ah, ok, I see. Well I guess I'm reluctantly in car 3 then. I don't think it's the same as it used to be, and I doubt it will ever get back to that, although I still think there's some magic there.

DisneyKidds
05-05-2003, 11:45 AM
Just to keep y'all posted, I got the "your letter has been received and someone will be contacting you" call from Disney this morning. This call came from Florida. Of the 10 copies I sent I'd say three or four were addressed to Lake Buena Vista and the remainder went to the left coast. Not sure from whom I'd rather get a response. I'll let you know if one is forthcoming (but I'm still not holding my breath for anything all that meaningful - but I have been heard, even if only by the mailroom clerk ;))..

DisneyJules
05-05-2003, 02:22 PM
*stands up and cheers* How perfectly written! Everything you stated is exactly how I feel about the company right now. It saddens me that they are throwing away the very qualities that built the Walt Disney Company. It sickens me to see what's happened to the Disney Store. I knew as a child of 8 years of age that Disney was TOP quality, that they wanted the best for their guests. I can't even walk into the store anymore. I haven't been to WDW since 1996 and honestly I'm scared to see what's happened to it.
More of us should be writting letters, we all have to be a bunch of squeaky wheels.

roque
05-07-2003, 09:48 AM
pls let us know of any response you get
i thought you wrote a great letter and hope they take notice of the fact that you are not an occasional guest but someone who has invested heavily in WDW
cheers

Beachangel
05-13-2003, 08:44 PM
Posted by DisneyKidds:
but I have been heard, even if only by the mailroom clerk )..;)


Well, that's just the person to drop it someone's "in" box! LOL!

King Triton
05-21-2003, 08:27 PM
Great letter!

I sent a letter to Disney awhile back which was similar to that and received a very strange reply. It was a form letter from their legal department stating that they don't accept any suggestions from guests. :mad: I couldn't believe it. There is a good chance your letter will not be read. Disney is so paranoid about lawsuits that they stop reading their mail on suggestions to improve the park. Isn't that crazy!:crazy:

I love Disney and I'm a super fan for life. I have been seeing bad decisions from Michael Eisner that has removed some of the magic. Disney started to get spread out too thin and turned their backs on the theme parks. Expanding in too many different directions only lowered the stock price. Bad moves like removing the original Imagination ride with figment and Dream Finder, World of Motion, and Horizons have destroyed Epcot. Epcot hasn't been the same since. Building a lower quality park, DCA, didn't help either. The quality has gone down over the years. That is sad. Michael Eisner has lost his vision to make real Disney magic. In short, he just doesn't get it. The stock is doing terrible and I feel we need new blood at the top. With Eisner hand picking the board members, it will be very hard to do. Forbes magazine rated Michael Eisner the worst CEO in the country. Now I know why.

I hope the magic comes back soon.

DisneyKidds
05-21-2003, 11:24 PM
There is a good chance your letter will not be read.
Of the ten+ people I sent it to, I know at least one person (in at least one of the offices) has read it. I got a call from 'Katie' at the WDW Executive Offices in Florida this afternoon. The call was to my home number, so I haven't spoken to her yet. She said the call was in regard to my letter, and she asked that I call her back so we could discuss it. I'll call her in the morning. I'll let you all know what we talk about.

As for your response from the Disney legal eagles, I think that is a pretty standard response nowadays when a letter contains any suggestions as to what Disney should/might do. They can't acknowledge receipt, heaven forbid they actually do something you suggested and sue if they don't give you credit. Seems rediculous, I know - but in todays litigious society they think they are protecting themselves. I think it is a stinky response, but it isn't that strange. My letter didn't really contain any suggestions of any sort, so I guess I passed the legal hurdle :crazy:. I have to wonder how many departments have to read a letter before they determine it is safe to be read by the intended recipient :confused:.

Planogirl
05-21-2003, 11:32 PM
Good luck with your call. I played phone tag for a while with a nice lady from the executive offices sometime back but I don't recall her name being Katie. She listened to me fuss and soothed me and that was about it in my case. Your letter is so good that you will at least have a lot to talk about.

hopemax
05-22-2003, 01:28 AM
When I got my call from the WDW Executive office, I talked to the lady for 45 minutes. After the first 20, she finally gave up on the "script" and the last 20 minutes were a fairly nice conversation, but there's not much they can really do. A few days later, a package containing a copy of a WDW pictoral souvenier came in the mail.

Kaitysmom
05-22-2003, 09:39 AM
I'm dying to hear what they have to say as well.

For me, the magic was in the details. It is painful to watch them cutting and cutting, making the Disney experience just average instead of superior. This goes for the resorts, the parks and the Disney Store. I wonder if we would all be so loyal to Disney if we were introduced to it now and didn't have all of our fond memories of the way it used to be... I am doubtful and I think that that's really sad...

interested
05-22-2003, 09:47 PM
If you are a vacation club owner, why the need for discounted rooms? Also, I THOUGHT that vacation club owners rec'd a 10%discount on merchandise and extra perks?
One point I would challenge in your letter is the ASSUMPTION that they would be hardpressed to find a more loyal Disney fan. I think there are MANY fans out there with lengthy Disney stay/visits in the computers of WDW. We live in very different times and I would venture to guess that SOME of the cuts had to come with the expansion of the security alone.
I too am an avid Disney fan. Took me a LONG time to be able to accept and understand that in the direction Walt was going we (loyal fans) wouldn't have even had the luxury of the parks as we know them today. Although Michael Eisner may not currently receive rave reviews, had it not been for him and Frank Wells TWDC may not have ever known any substantial financial success.
We live in very stressful times that have changed many things but the one thing that will never change is if you are Disney at heart.
Last year we did the 7 day eastern cruise in January, the 7 day western in October 3 trips to animal kingdom lodge, 1 to the wilderness lodge and this year has taken us back to the eastern carribean in February, Disneyland and the cabins at Fort wilderness. My granddaughter is 9 mos old and has visited the parks and stayed on property 4 times as well as accompanied us on the last 7 day cruise. This is just the past 1 1/2 years- We leave again for the parks and cruise 1 week from today. We do not live near Florida but find it worth the trip every time. I'll bet there are many that have my record beat. We have NEVER missed a year since October 1971.

:Pinkbounc Goodluck with your letter, I hope it brings to you what you are in search of.

safetymom
05-23-2003, 07:58 AM
Kaitysmom, I am sure there are people that are just taking their first trips to WDW. After those trips they will want to return just like the rest of us.

They don't know about how the parks and resorts used to be. I still think you can have a great time without knowing how it used to be. If you didn't know that they used to have longer hours or more fireworks what difference is it. I have gone many many times to WDW and this is the first time that I went to MK and saw Spectro and the fireworks. Did it make any difference to me that they don't offer this as much as they used to? No. Because for me at least they are still offering it.

In this day and age of cost cutting all over the country I am glad that at least WDW are trying to maintain what they used to have. Maybe not as often but they still have it.

So I don't like to moan about all the cuts. I just take it as it is a different business climate than it was before.

I still see the Magic every time I take a trip. I will be taking my fifth trip in a year next week to WDW. I can't wait to go back and explore the parks and have a great time.

Kaitysmom
05-23-2003, 08:27 AM
I agree with much of what you are saying Safetymom - but only to a point. I am not saying that the Disney experience isn't magical. It still is. That is why I keep going back. I am talking about the difference between WOW and great. Used to be a WOW - not so much anymore. Many of the details are gone, those little extra touches.

"In this day and age of cost cutting all over the country I am glad that at least WDW are trying to maintain what they used to have. Maybe not as often but they still have it."

What about River Country, 20000 Leagues, Carousel of Progress, Timekeeper, Disney Club, the really pathetic Disney Stores, etc? As I said, the magic is still there, but diluted. Yes, I will continue to go but I miss the old Disney.

safetymom
05-23-2003, 08:35 AM
I miss the old Disney. C of P is my favorite. Am I upset that it isn't open all the time? Yes. But at least it hasn't gone away yet.

I look at all this a little differently. We went to a local water park that everyone raves about the lazy river. After going to TL or BB I couldn't believe the difference. I am spoiled forever by Disney. Yes there are things that they don't do like they used to but I am hopeful that they will come out with other things to replace them.

I have the DC card. When they discontinued it did I rush to get the Disney Visa? No. Because that product doesn't suit my needs.

I am still hopeful that Disney will not lose sight of all the people that do plan many trips to the park. I will continue to write letters to Disney when I have a good trip or when something doesn't go the way it should.

I am still hopeful that Disney will wake up and remember what made WDW great and work to return or expand the Magic.

DisneyKidds
05-23-2003, 09:26 AM
If you are a vacation club owner, why the need for discounted rooms? Also, I THOUGHT that vacation club owners rec'd a 10%discount on merchandise and extra perks?
Even us vacation club owners have occasion to stay in a non DVC resort. Whether it is because we used all our points or just want a change of scenery, it happens. As for DVC discounts, there really aren't that many.

As for loyalty, if you want the title of number one fan it is yours, as that wasn't my point ;).

KNWVIKING
05-23-2003, 11:02 AM
DVC is great for planning trips,not so great for spur of the moment trips though. Maybe a great airfare pops up and it fits your schedule but nothing DVC is availible. Or perhaps I'd like to stay at a monorail resort and don't want to burn tons of points to do so.

Moosysmom
05-23-2003, 08:15 PM
While I haven't been to WDW as many times as so many of you, I do go as often as I can, and am relocating to Florida, because I can to visit more often.
Members of my family have asked me why I keep going back, and as things have changed my answer has always been to Remember the Magic I felt the first time I visited. I took my first Disney cruise in March, and we had an Imagineer onboard for a Behind the scenes talk. He told us, what was coming up, what was rumored. He also told us, that although sometimes things change, Disney does listen to the guests. If there is something wrong, he told us the best thing to do is to voice your concerns. He told us that Figment returning was because of the Guests wanting Figment back. People also asked about 20,000 Leagues and he stated that nothing has been decided yet. You need to let people know.
In anything I do, if there is something good, I try to let the right people know and try to do the same with something bad. Unfortunately for me I usually put up with the bad instead of actually telling someone. That is the only way that the people who make the decisions can know that there is a problem. If they don’t hear, they don't know there is a problem and sometimes they don't respond but it's not because they don't understand what the problem is.
My last visit in 2001 was right after 9-11. It was a hard time for a lot of people, but being at WDW allowed me to believe that there is still hope. It gave me peace. Things were different there from my first visit, but it didn't matter. It was still the place I could go to forget about my troubles.
The letter that DisneyKidds wrote contains a lot of things that I think people think but never say. I was heartbroken when Disney Club was closing, couldn't believe I actually got a Disney Visa and try very hard not to use it. And I'm glad she wrote it and there are some people responding. I just hope that we all remember that there is Magic there if we remember to always look. It changes but hopefully it’s always there. It may not be the same but it’s there. I agree with Safetymom’s comments that it would be good to go back to the way it was and I hope that Disney hears about how a lot of Disney fans feel.

Bella the Ball 360
07-03-2003, 09:35 AM
I totally agree with your letter. I have vacationed at Disney (land and world)for over 30 years and the changes are painful. My husband always says if there is something of value the next year they either take it away, or make it smaller and charge more. I hate the feeling that all they want is your money.What I liked in the past was the feeling that they were all about the experience. I liked the fact that even though prices were high one did not even consider the money because there was a feeling of maintaining the high standards that Walt had put forth.
The cast memebers are not as helpful. As I was entering Universal I had on a Disney shirt and the man taking the tickets began a conversation with me. He was a senior citizen and told me he had worked at Disney for over 20 years. He said that they were NOT the same company he began working for and so he left. Maybe I just expect less from Universal but I have had some really great experiences with their employees. I cannot say the same for Disney of late.

I too had written a letter a couple of years ago similiar to yours and received pretty much a "kiss off" reply. One of the CM's had given me an address and told me to write (on the QT). I DID NOT have the names of those to whom you mailed your letter and I bet that is the difference.
Good luck and I hope this starts a letter writing campagin.

Minnie1156
07-04-2003, 11:10 AM
Please post the reply to this letter. I would be interested in hearing it.

Thanks:bounce: :Pinkbounc :smooth:

"what will be, will be" :earsgirl:

DisneyKidds
07-04-2003, 11:22 AM
Please post the reply to this letter. I would be interested in hearing it.
I received 2 replies to this letter and I posted them here..............

http://disboards.com/showthread.php?s=&threadid=377468

I've heard nothing since and doubt I will.