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Old 03-31-2013, 02:43 PM   #16
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We are dvc and going to okw for 7 days and decided to try different things we have no Disney park days planned. We want to do discovery cove so it makes sense to do all of the seaworld parks as we will have them for 14 days. The tickets for Disney are getting a bit out of hand. But we still love the resorts. We cook our own meals as we no longer enjoy the dining we do like the bass excursion and will continue to vacation there but we are kinda over the parks.
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Old 03-31-2013, 05:37 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by treehugnmama View Post
We are dvc and going to okw for 7 days and decided to try different things we have no Disney park days planned. We want to do discovery cove so it makes sense to do all of the seaworld parks as we will have them for 14 days. The tickets for Disney are getting a bit out of hand. But we still love the resorts. We cook our own meals as we no longer enjoy the dining we do like the bass excursion and will continue to vacation there but we are kinda over the parks.
I have DVC too, and OKW seems to be a good location to take advantage of the off-site possibilities. I am excited to visit Sea World and the New Antarctica in June. BUT, I will be staying at the farthest location - Kidani. As DVC goes, I love Hilton Head.
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Old 03-31-2013, 07:04 PM   #18
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It almost seems like Disney is toying with the opposition. They obviously aren't feeling any real drop in attendance or revenue with the competition upping it's game. I feel like if that day ever did come, WDW would put in something killer (Star Wars land comes to mind) that would decimate the opposition. But for now, why bother? As PPs have said, they're doing just fine with what they have right now. No need from their perspective to spend millions when it isn't just necessary (much to the disappointment from me and every other Disney nut here who would love to see the amazing stuff WDI could churn out on a regular basis)
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Old 03-31-2013, 08:27 PM   #19
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Disney World has huge fixed costs, and relatively low variable costs. So when someone goes offsite for lodging, food, or entertainment it takes a big bite out of profitability.

Unless they give people a reason to return, they will go elsewhere (cruises, Europe, National Parks, Washington DC, Hawaii...). This is why they built new Fantasyland and Art of Animation and why they are rebuilding Downtown Disney.

IMHO they need to do more. New attractions are needed at Epcot and DHS, extend the monorail, and perhaps even a new park. If they wait until attendance starts to slide, they will have waited too long.

They also should not leave areas to decay for years - like they did with the MK gondola and 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, Discovery Island, River Country, or Pleasure Island. To me these feel like disrespect for Walt.
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Old 03-31-2013, 08:29 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by umichigan10
It almost seems like Disney is toying with the opposition. They obviously aren't feeling any real drop in attendance or revenue with the competition upping it's game. I feel like if that day ever did come, WDW would put in something killer (Star Wars land comes to mind) that would decimate the opposition. But for now, why bother? As PPs have said, they're doing just fine with what they have right now. No need from their perspective to spend millions when it isn't just necessary (much to the disappointment from me and every other Disney nut here who would love to see the amazing stuff WDI could churn out on a regular basis)
Jeez...did you have to go all "end game" so fast?

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Old 03-31-2013, 08:35 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by DanInMN
Disney World has huge fixed costs, and relatively low variable costs. So when someone goes offsite for lodging, food, or entertainment it takes a big bite out of profitability.
I agree with the rest but on the excerpt above...

Disney World is a gigantic revenue AND profit source for one of the world's largest media companies....year in and out.

So there's that...which kinda is a big deal.
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Old 04-02-2013, 04:48 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by Peter Pirate 2 View Post
I love sea world, even though I hate that there is no more free beer.

Once again, they are truly trying vs. Disney who is truly coasting. Disney will feel the effects of sea world and universal for real in the next couple of years.
~I love Sea World, too. But, why is it okay for one to indulge in "free beer" at Sea World who struggled to stay out of the red, but not "free dining" at WDW, who reports record breaking profits?!? I think those who live in fabulous glass ocean front houses, should not throw stones. IMO, there is nothing wrong with using "free beer" or "free dining." Mr. Pirate, please stop struggling & learn to embrace your inner Walmart! And, I do agree with you, that Disney has been coasting for far too long!
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Old 04-02-2013, 11:03 PM   #23
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~I love Sea World, too. But, why is it okay for one to indulge in "free beer" at Sea World who struggled to stay out of the red, but not "free dining" at WDW, who reports record breaking profits?!? I think those who live in fabulous glass ocean front houses, should not throw stones. IMO, there is nothing wrong with using "free beer" or "free dining." Mr. Pirate, please stop struggling & learn to embrace your inner Walmart! And, I do agree with you, that Disney has been coasting for far too long!
oh boy...

the underlying complaint for all anti "free dining" crusaders is that they are all also anti "dining" in general...

dining plans allowed them to streamline the once good meals at restaurants to hell, lower quality, and charge a fortune for it.

so it sucks...and if we all just accept it and stop taking/buying it...that would be only path to eliminating this blight.

And i know...its never going to happen. But its still the choice for the greater good...and "free dining" going away is a start to perhaps shedding the light on the warts that have grown out of the "fabulous, money saving" dining plans.

They can't even really claim savings since they gutted the plan (about 5 years ago...cause they said waiters hated guaranteed tips...yeah, and there's a bear using my bathroom as we speak) and they have jacked up the price ever year.

come on now, this whole thing is CODE
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Old 04-03-2013, 07:27 AM   #24
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the underlying complaint for all anti "free dining" crusaders is that they are all also anti "dining" in general...

dining plans allowed them to streamline the once good meals at restaurants to hell, lower quality, and charge a fortune for it.
This x100.

Not only has free dining/dining plan destroyed the quality of food, but its made that lower quality a standard for them. Case in point, I finally got around to Be Our Guest a couple weeks back and while the atmosphere and service were top notch, the food was good. Just good. Disney's king restaurant that is booked for months ahead of time... the food was just good.

Looking at the menu it all sounds real nice, but the dishes being served look and taste mass-produced, because they probably are. Disney has streamlined this assembly line mindset into all their food service, even signature dining sadly. I tried four dishes between my family's and my own and none of them really stood out as a fantastic, amazing item.

So, when it comes to all this free dining and dining plan stuff, it's just supporting this mindset. Sure a vast majority get a bargain, but you really do get your money's worth since the quality of food is nowhere near what it used to be in the pre-dining plan days. Oddly enough, my best meals on property last trip were from quick service locations, and the few signatures I did go to were not that good at all.
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Old 04-03-2013, 12:02 PM   #25
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I heard the same exact things about Be Our Guest...

The place looks great and the the little dramatic show (every 20 minutes from what i'm told) is really impressive...

but the food is completely uninspiring and average at best. and that is pretty standard for restaurants these days and is always standard at MK...where food just never acheives a high standard of quality...i've always wondered why it seems to be that way though

I can only speak for myself - as a person who has eaten in every existing WDW establishment...most at least 2 or 3 times...many over 10 times...
Our next trip is the first where the restaurant is available...having been down last august. And i didn't bother to make the effort to book it. certainly could have and just didn't feel like it. I'll get to it later. That was entirely due to early revues of the food and my hard learned experiences over the last 10 (really 8 cough DINING PLAN cough) that disney food has been diminished by accounting intentionally and just doesn't stack up to what my belly remembers from the 80s and 90s. It just don't.

So if I - an admitted disney food fan - can't be bother to go on their website and book a table...what does that say for what they are presenting?
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Old 04-03-2013, 08:07 PM   #26
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Originally Posted by lockedoutlogic View Post
oh boy...

the underlying complaint for all anti "free dining" crusaders is that they are all also anti "dining" in general...

dining plans allowed them to streamline the once good meals at restaurants to hell, lower quality, and charge a fortune for it.

so it sucks...and if we all just accept it and stop taking/buying it...that would be only path to eliminating this blight.

And i know...its never going to happen. But its still the choice for the greater good...and "free dining" going away is a start to perhaps shedding the light on the warts that have grown out of the "fabulous, money saving" dining plans.

They can't even really claim savings since they gutted the plan (about 5 years ago...cause they said waiters hated guaranteed tips...yeah, and there's a bear using my bathroom as we speak) and they have jacked up the price ever year.

come on now, this whole thing is CODE
~Awww, was I too hard on Mr. Pirate? Maybe. But, why say things like "nothing is free" while indulging in "free beer" elsewhere. I just *love* that grumpy pirate -- but you can't have it both ways, right??? You can't blame people for getting hooked on "free dining" -- just like you can't blame people for indulging in "free beer" -- the drawbacks from any promotion lies with the company, so let's direct most of the blame there --that's all I'm saying.

~I'm not a fan of "free dining" -- I've seen it bring out the worst on both sides. With that said, I loved the first dining plan, now it's just okay -- the value aspect for me has diminished tremendously -- now, it's just a matter of convenience.

~I know you don't like the dining plan but it was necessary for Disney to intervene because the resale of vouchers on ebay had gotten out of hand. An individual could get up to thirty meal vouchers from hotwire.com for 7 -10 bucks per voucher (each voucher including an appetizer, full entree, drink, dessert and gratuity) and people were reselling them for 3 or 4 times that.



~So, when Disney introduced the dining plan, this immediately terminated the voucher program. Most people weren't even aware of the dining plan until the free dining promotion -- as it became wildly popular, that's when we started to experience the significant decline in dining for a brief period.
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Old 04-03-2013, 08:38 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by DRDISNEYMD

~I know you don't like the dining plan but it was necessary for Disney to intervene because the resale of vouchers on ebay had gotten out of hand. An individual could get up to thirty meal vouchers from hotwire.com for 7 -10 bucks per voucher (each voucher including an appetizer, full entree, drink, dessert and gratuity) and people were reselling them for 3 or 4 times that.

~So, when Disney introduced the dining plan, this immediately terminated the voucher program. Most people weren't even aware of the dining plan until the free dining promotion -- as it became wildly popular, that's when we started to experience the significant decline in dining for a brief period.
The free beer thing was a cute little gimmick because Anheiser owned the park.
The dining plans are an orchestrated ten year scheme that has been very deliberately been turned as a weapon against ALL the paying customers...all of them..."free dining" or not.

So with all due respect...you're dishing for herring on that and you know it. (You even coped to it: "it's not really a value now, just a convenience"...WHOMP!...there it is. That was there whole damn goal in the first place. Institutionalized repeat customers)

BUT...you've got me interested with the uncovering of this "Hotwire, voucher scheme" above.

I'm certainly not all knowing...not by a nautical mile...but I like to try and keep abreast of most things and check boards and the news pretty frequently to see what's going.

But I gotta ask....WHAT?!?!??!!?!

Oh do tell...what did I miss? opcorn:
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Old 04-03-2013, 08:39 PM   #28
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Originally Posted by DRDISNEYMD View Post
~Awww, was I too hard on Mr. Pirate? Maybe. But, why say things like "nothing is free" while indulging in "free beer" elsewhere. I just *love* that grumpy pirate -- but you can't have it both ways, right??? You can't blame people for getting hooked on "free dining" -- just like you can't blame people for indulging in "free beer" -- the drawbacks from any promotion lies with the company, so let's direct most of the blame there --that's all I'm saying.

~I'm not a fan of "free dining" -- I've seen it bring out the worst on both sides. With that said, I loved the first dining plan, now it's just okay -- the value aspect for me has diminished tremendously -- now, it's just a matter of convenience.

~I know you don't like the dining plan but it was necessary for Disney to intervene because the resale of vouchers on ebay had gotten out of hand. An individual could get up to thirty meal vouchers from hotwire.com for 7 -10 bucks per voucher (each voucher including an appetizer, full entree, drink, dessert and gratuity) and people were reselling them for 3 or 4 times that.



~So, when Disney introduced the dining plan, this immediately terminated the voucher program. Most people weren't even aware of the dining plan until the free dining promotion -- as it became wildly popular, that's when we started to experience the significant decline in dining for a brief period.
You're comparing apples and oranges. Sea world was (and still is) owned by a beer company. Free beer = future customers. Free dining at WDW means the once famous, world wide recognized chefs now must include Mickey mac'n'cheese to their menus. Future customers? Yeah, the Walmart crowd (I know you'd appreciate that DR.).
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Old 04-03-2013, 10:48 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by lockedoutlogic View Post
The free beer thing was a cute little gimmick because Anheiser owned the park.
The dining plans are an orchestrated ten year scheme that has been very deliberately been turned as a weapon against ALL the paying customers...all of them..."free dining" or not.

So with all due respect...you're dishing for herring on that and you know it. (You even coped to it: "it's not really a value now, just a convenience"...WHOMP!...there it is. That was there whole damn goal in the first place. Institutionalized repeat customers)

BUT...you've got me interested with the uncovering of this "Hotwire, voucher scheme" above.

I'm certainly not all knowing...not by a nautical mile...but I like to try and keep abreast of most things and check boards and the news pretty frequently to see what's going.

But I gotta ask....WHAT?!?!??!!?!

Oh do tell...what did I miss?
opcorn:
~lockedoutlogic, I agree with your harshly worded post -- but, "Institutionalized repeated customer?!?" Is there not a friendlier term you can coin? Anyway, I like the dining plan, but I'm on the fence about using it again. That being said, I love the all inclusive model -- I use Magical Express, stay exclusively onsite, and book my entire trip with one click -- everything paid for in advance -- guilty as charged.

~Yes, the vouchers were HOT on ebay -- they would sell within seconds and auctions became viscous bidding wars where the winner(s) were awarded the privilege of paying a high premium. With a little research, I discovered how people acquired them. Hotwire was the easiest and most popular site to purchase the vouchers. I believe this is the reason Disney created the regular dining plan. I found a couple of old websites that must have sold the vouchers at one point.

~Disney Meal Vouchers 1~

~Disney Meal Vouchers 2~

Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter Pirate 2 View Post
You're comparing apples and oranges. Sea world was (and still is) owned by a beer company. Free beer = future customers. Free dining at WDW means the once famous, world wide recognized chefs now must include Mickey mac'n'cheese to their menus. Future customers? Yeah, the Walmart crowd (I know you'd appreciate that DR.).
~Ouch. Again, I don't like Wal-mart, so I don't think so. I am not the enemy, I am on your side (for the most part). The underlined definitely puts things into perspective -- so you win, but only by a small margin. I don't know, part of me feels like you're getting away too easy with this "free beer" analogy thing. But, I'll concede this time, Mr. Pirate.
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Old 04-04-2013, 11:12 AM   #30
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I'm glad to see them doing so well. We love SeaWorld and try to visit every few years. They have done a good job expending the offerings and providing a better all around experience. We are heading to DC in August for a day and will most likely do at least one more day at the other parks as well. Of course we'll still be doing the Disney parks for 5 days as well.
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