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Old 01-04-2013, 09:09 AM   #61
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Originally Posted by Colleen27 View Post
I'm not going to join the Disney apologists on this one either... Ride maintainence is a big issue right now. Sure, you notice the effects more when it is busy but we had days where we encountered several breakdowns in one day on both of our last two trips (one in January where long hours certainly weren't the issue, and the other at Memorial Day so cold wasn't a factor) and I'm actually a little worried over it when it comes to our next trip because we're taking a first timer for what will probably be her only visit to WDW... So if, as happened last trip, all three mountains, Pirates, and Haunted Mansion are all closed for chunks of our only MK day and at Epcot we have the same experience with Nemo, Figment, Soarin', Spaceship Earth and Test Track, it is far more upsetting/disappointing than it would normally be.

.
Question. . .

How is being pragmatic about ride breakdowns being a "Disney Apologist"?

The parks are open 365 days a year, and the second a ride is brought down for any type of refurb, they get a million complaints from everyone who had their entire trip ruined because "X" ride wasn't working while they were there. So they bring the ride down for the minimum amount of time necessary to do preventative maintenance, which really doesn't give it a complete refurb, which causes more problems to snowball.

I am actually talking out of experience as a technician on electronic equipment for ships. When a complicated piece of equipment is brought down to "cold steel", there is A LOT of things that need to be done to ensure that when it is brought back to operational readiness, it had better have had ALL these things done to it, in order to prevent further malfunction.

Well, the problem is that upper management, be they park managers, or Commanding Officers, don't care about those details. They want to get the ride/RADAR/engine/weapons system back up YESTERDAY (I have been told to produce working products that I do not have during normal bodily functions that are biologically uncomfortable, let alone possible). So they don't actually give enough time for proper maintenance to be performed.

We've all seen reports from CM's who attest that maintenance budgets and times have been cut, but so long as Little Johnny gets to ride the Mad Tea Party when the Jones family from Kenosha shows up, who cares right. I'm just being a "Disney Apologist".
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Old 01-04-2013, 09:11 AM   #62
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Originally Posted by Jenny-momof3 View Post
I posted earlier about my experience being there over Christmas and New Years. We had a great time and were able to ride plenty of things everyday....and this was with hauling 4 kids through the parks. And we don't stay all day...we go for a few hours in the mornings and few hours in the evenings.

But I will agree with you on the rides being down waaay too much! We also go to Kings Island and Cedar Point which has major roller coasters and they aren't down anywhere near as much as the Disney rides!
Keep in mind, though, that both Kings Island and Cedar Point are closed for around 5 months every year, which gives them a pretty comfortable window to do ride maintenance. I'm sure Disney would have no ride problems at all if they closed from November through March!

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Old 01-04-2013, 09:16 AM   #63
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3 hour wait for space mtn. yesterday! There is no way I'd wait that long!
http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=3040882

Actually almost 4!!!

On the rides breaking down-
Disney make enough money to hire more than enough people to fix these problems so they don't happen as frequently period. Even if it's not perfect, it shouldn't be as bad as some people are reporting. It's not like the parks are open 24 hours a day.
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Old 01-04-2013, 09:28 AM   #64
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Originally Posted by VeganCupcake View Post
http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=3040882

Actually almost 4!!!

On the rides breaking down-
Disney make enough money to hire more than enough people to fix these problems so they don't happen as frequently period. Even if it's not perfect, it shouldn't be as bad as some people are reporting. It's not like the parks are open 24 hours a day.
No, but they are open sometimes up to 18 hours a day. That leaves very minimal time for workers to come in, clean, repair lights, etc. provide the daily inspections, etc. Let alone actually fix broken parts of rides that are (at least some) 30 years old if not older.

Disney is damned if they do, damned if they don't. People complained and complained and complained that their trip was ruined because BTMR was closed for refurbishment as was Test Track. So Disney rushed to get the minimal amount done to reopen. Now people are complaining that rides are breaking. They opened more hours (EMH and added late hours) so that has greatly cut into the amount of time they have for maintenance. Yet when Disney pulled back on EMH people were up in arms. I'm not a Disney apologist at all, for the amount of money we spend at the parks, I want them perfect. However, I'm realistic with the issues and problems.
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Old 01-04-2013, 09:31 AM   #65
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As someone who has been to cedar point and disney often. I have had far worse luck with rides being down at cedar point than I ever have at disney. Anyone that goes to cedar point can tell you how often top thrill dragster goes down, the same with millennium.
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Old 01-04-2013, 09:53 AM   #66
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Originally Posted by dpuck1998 View Post
As someone who has been to cedar point and disney often. I have had far worse luck with rides being down at cedar point than I ever have at disney. Anyone that goes to cedar point can tell you how often top thrill dragster goes down, the same with millennium.
If I'm paying Cedar Point prices, I have lower expectations. For Disney prices, I have higher ones.
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Old 01-04-2013, 09:54 AM   #67
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Originally Posted by dpuck1998 View Post
As someone who has been to cedar point and disney often. I have had far worse luck with rides being down at cedar point than I ever have at disney. Anyone that goes to cedar point can tell you how often top thrill dragster goes down, the same with millennium.
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Old 01-04-2013, 09:56 AM   #68
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Originally Posted by Elmo9607 View Post
I disagree. I've been down for Christmas frequently and I've always gotten to ride everything I want, multiple times if I want, and I'm only in the parks mornings and evenings. Meticulous planning does wonders

However, yes, the crowds are HUGE and FP's for most attractions are gone by 10 am, if not earlier. The crowds are bigger in the evenings than in the mornings by FAR. It is not a week to mosey in the parks at 11 am and want to ride stuff. It's not hard to find information on how busy Disney is that week either
Actually, you make a great point...Christmas serapates the novice from expert. YOU, obviously know what you are doing and planned accordingly.
I am a fastpass commando and do plan as well....we just avoid christman.
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Old 01-04-2013, 12:28 PM   #69
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I was there the last week of April and experienced an inordinate number of breakdowns, too. We still had a good time, but it is frustrating. Even the "Disney Apologists" have to admit that ride breakdowns is not something that Disney should accept being associated with.... and unfortunately, talking with my friends, I'm realizing that's starting to be the case. And yet it has been going on like this for over a year. To me, ride maintenance should be on the bottom of the list when it comes to things that can be cut back on because not only does it inconvenience people, it puts the safety of the rides into question . . . I'm not sure how many people have to complain to them before they get the picture.
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Old 01-04-2013, 12:33 PM   #70
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Originally Posted by Ginny Favers View Post
I was there the last week of April and experienced an inordinate number of breakdowns, too. We still had a good time, but it is frustrating. Even the "Disney Apologists" have to admit that ride breakdowns is not something that Disney should accept being associated with.... and unfortunately, talking with my friends, I'm realizing that's starting to be the case. And yet it has been going on like this for over a year. To me, ride maintenance should be on the bottom of the list when it comes to things that can be cut back on because not only does it inconvenience people, it puts the safety of the rides into question . . . I'm not sure how many people have to complain to them before they get the picture.
You're absolutely right, it isn't acceptable.

But on the bottom line, anything that is purely overhead, as maintenance is, doesn't go over well with penny pinchers who end up in high level, decision making positions.

It's never a good thing, but sometimes it's hard to see the bottom line when your head is in the clouds.

Oooh, that was a good one. Where's the tag fairy when you need her/him?
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Old 01-04-2013, 12:41 PM   #71
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Originally Posted by mom2rtk View Post
Several CMs have posted here that Disney added more FPs to the mix when they started time enforcement last March. The supposition is that they would then take those slots back out later to use for Fastpass+. That capacity is going to have to come from somewhere.

It really did seem to me during our recent trip that FPs were available much later into the day, and that return times were far sooner than anything I had ever experienced before.
And we've gone the same week for several years now.
I agree. We were there from Dec 29 to Jan 3 and it seemed that we were always waiting in standby for a very long line of fastpassers to get through. On one ride in particular, Winnie the Pooh, the CMs seemed to be letting in dozens and dozens of fast passers, then 5 standbys, then another 40 fast passers. People were really getting mad. Sometimes it looked like the fast passers were all through, but the CMs would hold the standby lane back and WAIT for more fast passers to appear. It was so odd.

It also seemed that we could get fast passes later into the day, but the return times were so soon they weren't doable. We were at Maelstrom and the FP return times were ~ 40 min away. You can't really leave and do something else, and what's the point of waiting? You may as well be in line.

The only ride that broke down for us was BTMRR. The CM said he expected it to be down 'for awhile' so we didn't wait. Other rides we saw had intermittent breakdowns but since we had done them already, or didn't want to do them, we weren't affected. I can see how the perfect storm of ride breakdowns can really affect a touring plan.

We did lots of rides during early magic hours and at night during the fireworks, but it really was a bit stressful with the crowds. My family agrees that it was fun, but we probably wouldn't go again during peak crowd levels. We noticed that other people seemed to be stressed out and snapping at each other more than we have ever seen before. Lots of pushing and shoving and rudeness. So even if you had a plan, and executed it well, you had to deal with that, too.

ps we noticed an extreme amount of line-cutting as well. The longer the line, the more people cut.

Last edited by Eastern; 01-04-2013 at 12:49 PM.
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Old 01-04-2013, 12:46 PM   #72
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It also seemed that we could get fast passes later into the day, but the return times were so soon they weren't doable. We were at Maelstrom and the FP return times were ~ 40 min away. You can't really leave and do something else, and what's the point of waiting? You may as well be in line.
Yes, this is exactly what we experienced. It's almost like they researched the optimal delay that would cause folks to shop while waiting. Too long and they'd go do something else. Too short and they'd just stand there and wait. I've got it......... 40 minutes!

This just seemed so different from our past experiences I was prepared for more running around gathering FPs now that they enforce end times. I wasn't really prepared for this awkward return timing.
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Old 01-04-2013, 12:48 PM   #73
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ps they should have a FP option for Cava de Tequila. We waited in a relatively short line for 30 minutes to get to the bar and order a drink to take away. Meanwhile, people were getting to the front of the line and parking themselves at the bar so the rest of the line was basically standing and waiting for them to finish their drinks. It was ridiculous.

Many people were cutting this line, sneaking under the rope. One was a CM who just gotten off duty!! (she had her name tag on at first. I complained about her cutting and another person said 'oh look, she is a worker' but she just got on line and waited with the rest of us).

I did complain at the end to the woman manager who was directing the line. She said "Oh, they are not supposed to stand at the bar, I will move them away". She really wasn't doing a very good job.
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Old 01-04-2013, 12:49 PM   #74
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I've never even been in a FP line that even had 50 or 100 people in it. Are they issuing more FP's than they used to? Of course, I've never been during a peak season.
We were in a few 100+ FP lines in Oct, and this was not during peak season. Our FP line for KSafari was more like 200+ and started outside the que.....down the hill! CM's had to set up ropes. When new FPer's came to front of line (where CM was), they couldn't believe the FP line was being directed down the hill.

TSM was another 100+ FP line.

I don't know if it's too many FPs or the way they are holding people to the time. One thing I do know is that FP lines seem worse than ever.
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Old 01-04-2013, 12:54 PM   #75
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Originally Posted by mad madam mim78
I remember disney before fastpass.

I don't think I would go back to disney if they went back to the old ways. The number one piece of advice on the DIS is during peak crowd levels ALWAYS arrive early and work the fastpass system. If you go during those times and you don't heed this advice you should accept your fate and not blame the system. Early bird gets the worm, ounce of prevention and all that jazz.
Exactly what I was thinking...

We go in the Spring. It often falls over the Easter break. We know it will be crazy and make sure we are there at opening during Easter week. When it doesn't fall on Easter there is more room to be a little slower in the mornings.

As much as I would love to see WDW decorated for the holidays, I am not willing to deal with what comes with that crowd wise.

The early bird catches the worm or the Fastpass in this case.
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