How does Disneyland Paris measure up to the other their American cousin parks?

Discussion in 'Disneyland Paris Trip Planning & Community Board' started by mikneyspackson, Sep 4, 2012.

  1. mikneyspackson

    mikneyspackson Mouseketeer

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    Does it feel just as magical as the Disneyland in California and Magic Kingdom in Florida or is it a bit of a let down?
    I've always read the language barrier is frustrating and that the CMs are nowhere near as "happy" or helpful which has a great impact on the experience. The place is also supposed to be filthy and not as well kept.

    I went when I was 7 but I don't remember at all!
     
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  3. Carrie_Cat

    Carrie_Cat I'm a Rive Gauche person Moderator

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  4. mikneyspackson

    mikneyspackson Mouseketeer

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    Haha some of it yes but I've read it before online as well!
    I came here to ask because different people might stick to only the DLP part of the site and I wanted to hear their views on it too :)
     
  5. Jonjo

    Jonjo Mouseketeer

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    I don't think you can compaire Disney theme parks, they are all very different. Trying to compaire Walt Disney World in Florida to Disneyland Pairs is very difficult. The only real way to do it is to visit the parks and see for your self.

    I think all Disney parks are magical in their own way, yes even Hong Kong Disneyland and Disney California Adventure are fun in their own ways.

    If your considering a trip to WDW, I would strongy sugest a visit DLP first before heading across the pond. Many people consider DLP the most beautiful of all the Disneyland Parks which I tend to agree with. Walking down Main Street at Christmas time with real snow under your feet is just a fantastic experiance.

    The errors made at WDWs MK are being corrected and they have based alot of what was learned at DLP in the Fantasyland extention and re-development.

    If you want a true Disney Adventure, headover to the Tokyo Disney Resort. Tokyo Disneyland and Tokyo DisneySea are just mind blowing. Both far superior to their American cousins in my opinion.

    Hong Kong Disneyland is a great day trip too. I'm just waiting to book a trip to the Shanghai Disney Resort.

    I've had some great interaction with the CMs at DLP with pin trading with them, down to a lighsaber battle at Star Traders and animals impersonations at The Blue Lagoon resturant.

    My ever lasting merrory of WDW will always be the American CM who used inappropriate comments to a group of disabled Mexican guests somthing I have never seen or heard at DLP. I've also never had my hotel room broken into in DLP, which has happend to me in WDW nor my car vandalised in the car park which has happend to me in California.

    If your in the UK a trip to DLP is a very easy thing to do, just jump on the Eurostar and see it for yourself.
     
  6. mikneyspackson

    mikneyspackson Mouseketeer

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    Thanks for replying!!!
    I can't believe that happened at WDW and California, that is crazy and sososo bad! Sorry to hear that!
    I've just heard so many stories how grumpy the DLP CMs are but that obviously can't be true :)
    What did the WDW CMs say to the mexican guests if you don't mind saying? No worries if not. How awful is that though.
    I'd love to go to Tokyo but I can imagine that being far more expensive. I've been dreaming of going to a Disney Park (preferably one of the American ones just because they feel more "authentic" to me and I heard bad stuff about DLP) since forever, seriously. All my life but never have been able to afford it.
    Thanks again :)
     
  7. tinks_1989

    tinks_1989 <font color=teal>need a <b>like</b> button<br><fon

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    It's a subject that will alway occur on this website and you will never get a simple answer.

    Every one has their favourite and like others have said you can't compare them they are so different.
     
  8. torsie24

    torsie24 Mummy to a perfect princess.

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    I've been to DLRP, WDW and DLR.

    Sadly only spent a day in DLR so we will be back for a longer trip in the next few years.

    To me (and before I get flamed this is just my opinion) DLRP is nowhere near as magical as the American parks. WDW being my main reference but I had a wonderful day in DLR.

    DLRPs MK is more beautiful than WDW and DLRs and it has the best Adventureland, and being newer some of the rides are noticeably better (POTC and Space Mountain in particular) also the castle is the prettiest and the dragon is great.

    But the way things look isn't enough to make up for what's lacking for me.

    In WDW I feel special and welcome and the restaurants and hotels are fabulous. All 4 parks are amazing alone. Of course with time WDS will grow and I thinks Toy Story Playland has great potential, and a Ratatoille area will be amazing.

    But the place needs some serious Disney-fication. I can't help but think that Walt would be overwhelmed by how amazing DLR and WDW have become. Yet DLRP definitely has a way to go. It's just not got that same 'Magic'

    But - I'm in no doubt lots of that (rude CMs aside) is due to budget, and fingers crossed the WDC buyout can really really lift it up. :)

    It has such wonderful potential, and I'm hoping that when we return once Rataoille is open as lot of the issues we had last trip will have been rectified and it'll be on its way to being a unique, yet just as magical park as its bigger siblings.
     
  9. nicola

    nicola <font color=deeppink>Tinkerbell<br><font color=gre

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    i have been to both extensively as used to live in canada and we used to drive down to WDW and for me DLP wins HANDS DOWN!! for me DLP is much more magical and beautiful with a much more european authentic fairy tale flair!
     
  10. Jonjo

    Jonjo Mouseketeer

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    Crime happens all over the place and Disney Resorts are not immune to it. Thats why WDW has its own undercover police force.

    I will not repeat what I heard on this forum as we are all a very friendly bunch of people here and I don't wish to offend anyone. Needless to say I did report the incident and I had a face to face meeting with a Manager a few days later when I was informed that that CM had been terminated from the Walt Disney College Program and no longer worked for WDW.

    Another thing to remember is that WDW and DLP were designed for different markets. WDW was designed as a vacation resort, most American's only get nine days of paid holiday per year and WDW is big enough to spend all those nine days there.

    DLP was deigned with European short breakers in mind. In the UK and Europe we get about 28 days holiday a year so DLP was designed with that in mind and that is the market they aim for. Most visitors spend 3 nights, four days at DLP.

    My next trip to DLP is for six nights, seven days - I don't want to be rushed and I realy enjoy the parks. When I tell people how long I'm going for they just shake their head and can't understand it. (But I guess on here people will).

    Yes I have meet a grump CM and DLP, then again I'm meet grumpy staff at Tesco, Barclays Bank and John Lewis. Everyone can have an off day.

    WDW is fine for a two week break - take a holiday and go and explore it again. DLP is closer and is great for a short break and there is a 40% off offer on at the moment so it's cheaper to go.
     
  11. tinkertaylor05

    tinkertaylor05 DIS Veteran

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    I can't compare as not been to the US parks yet what I will say is that my experience of dlp is with a child which may be totally different to that of an adult traveller. We have always been greeted with enthusiasm and smiles entering the parks, restaurants, shops, hotels and rides. We just returned from our 4th visit and I'm sending an email now to dlp thanking a number of outstanding cm's who took the time to remember us, call out to us in ride lines, stop us in the shops for a chat.

    I spent an hour chatting to a real fanatic yesterday in the parks who travels as a solo adult and we both concluded you get back what you put in alot of the time. We always make an effort to smile and engage the cm's which they do for us in return :goodvibes
     
  12. ShrumpUK

    ShrumpUK Earning My Ears

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    I went to WDW Florida with my hubby and youngest daughter (then 11) in 2004. Her, I , my eldest daughter and HER daughter (4 at the time) went to DLRP in 2008. In 2 weeks I am going to DLRP with eldest again and BOTH her girls, now 8 and 4.
    WDW blew me away! I sobbed when I saw that castle for the first time. All my childhood memories came flooding back and I was so sad my Mum couldn't be there to share it all with me.She loved Disney too.
    DLRP is smaller, but IMO just as good, maybe even better. It's so beautifully landscaped and seeing it through the eyes of a small child is magical. I can't wait to see my youngest granddaughter's face when she spots that Mouse for the first time and Dreams sounds amazing.
    I think it's what you make it.
    Yes, WDW is bigger, more parks, Animal Kingdom, etc etc, but the magic is most definitely in France and I can't wait to sob like a baby again as soon as I see that castle!
     
  13. Michael623

    Michael623 WDW 40 trips, DL 10 trips, DLP 2 trips, Currently

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    As you can see by my signature I've been to DLP twice and the US parks many times over. I can say yes to every point you bring up. In addition I've been reading that the pickpocketing has gotten out of control at DLP to make matters worse.

    I typically explain it like this: If you have visiting all of the Disney Parks on your bucket list then the reviews don't matter. If you are visiting Paris and want to take a day or two out to visit DLP fine. I would not fly to Paris just to go to DLP.

    Edited to mention that you WILL NOT get unbiased reviews on this board which I would expect on a fansite.
     
  14. Carrie_Cat

    Carrie_Cat I'm a Rive Gauche person Moderator

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    Pickpocketing has not got out of control at DLP :rotfl:

    There are thieves everywhere and large crowds draw them in. Pickpockets are opportunists and theme parks like metros, train stations, shopping centers etc etc provide them with a large picking field

    I go several times a month, even several times a week and I see the security reacting when they need too.

    Nowhere is immune and never has been
     
  15. DLPaddict

    DLPaddict Disney Dreamer

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    Never seen any of this during my visits. I think security do a great job in keeping the park safe.

    You get pickpockets everywhere.
     
  16. Jonjo

    Jonjo Mouseketeer

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    Yep could not agree more. DW was pick pocketed while we were on holiday in Romania a few years ago. Not an experiance I would like to go through again.
     
  17. torsie24

    torsie24 Mummy to a perfect princess.

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    Definitely.

    And I think as a tourist, and even in any crowded public place you need to be alert.

    Pickpocketing is awful, but you can really do yourself favours in preventing it happening to you. I'd never carry anything of any value in a pocket that I can't keep my hand against when needed.

    Actually, I lie. I carried a small backpack some days in DLRP. But my phone (the only valueble thing in there) was in a hidden pocket of the backpack that was against my back, took me about 5 minutes to dig the darn thing out so there was no chance anyone was getting to that without me noticing!
     
  18. wbl2745

    wbl2745 <font color=blue>I've gone over to the Silly Symph

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    There are some objective features that can be compared between DLP and the US parks. Admittedly I've only been to DLP once, but I was shocked at how run down and uncared DLP appeared.

    This may be a minor issue, but there were weeds all over the park. And not just two day old weeds, but weeds that were one to two meters high! The trees on the hill by the castle clearly needed haircuts. Topiary need constant care. There were a lot of place that just needed some paint. Star Tours, for example, had big sections of the wall where the paint had pealed off. You will not see any of that happening at DLR, which I am most familiar with.

    The biggest complaint I had was that the restrooms at DLP were just filthy, messes on the floor, piles of paper. You can argue that when there are a lot of people using a restroom, that's what happens, but that just means you have to have people cleaning the restrooms frequently.

    We stayed at the Sequoia Lodge and our room was also filthy. Someone had dropped popcorn in the hall and tracked it all over our room. We had to have them come and vacuum it up. The bathroom also needed a good going over. The beds were not properly made.

    Setting aside my concerns about upkeep, I think the DLP is fantastic. The themeing is out of this world. The castle is breathtaking. You can tell where they got cheap in the park, but overall I think DLP is wonderful. DHS on the other hand is cheaper than Disney's California Adventure before they spent $1,000,000 fixing what previous management had done. I felt like DHS was just a bunch of attractions without any cohesiveness. Disney needs to buy DLP and spend a €1,000,000 fixing DHS. They also need to fire the managers over maintenance and double the maintenance staff.
     
  19. JohnnySharp2

    JohnnySharp2 No man stands as tall as when he stoops to help a

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    We have been to Florida a dozen times, and DLRP just twice.

    It's unfair to compare but it's also an obvious thing to do.
    It also depends on the context Paris for example is a wonderful historic city whereas nobody would visit Orlando if the theme parks were not there.

    The Disneyland Park compares very favourably with Magic Kingdom, though the Studios is a bit of a let down.

    The real advantage of DLRP is everything is close together, and within easy reach from the UK. The dis-advantages of DLRP is dining is expensive and not in the same league as WDW plus outside the parks things could be improved, Disney Village for example is dull and un-inspiring, the new World Of Disney store is a welcome addition.
    I think the recent updates have improved the experience also, I have to admit I was blown away by how good Main Street USA looked at the Disneyland Park in March, better than anything I have seen at MK.

    In Orlando you also have so much more than Disney. Although Val d'europe, La Vallee Outlets and of course Paris itself are closeby.

    That said, we are going for the 3rd time to Paris next week and staying at the Disneyland Hotel again. If you can stay there and have a bit of luck with the weather it's as good as any WDW experience as the location is just perfect.

    It's the combination of staying at the DLH without the stress and fatique of all the travelling with a disabled son that is part of the appeal for us.
    In addition because the weather is cooler and everything is so compact there are a lot of things we can do at DLRP that we have
    difficulty doing in WDW, bearing in mind Joshua is autistic.
     
  20. Metsoskil

    Metsoskil Citi Field, Rehoboth Beach, and WDW are my 3 favor

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    By my signature you can see I've been to WDW many times. We just got back from a 3 week trip to Europe which concluded with 3 days at DLP.

    There are many great things about DLP that you can't get at the American Parks:

    The incredible beauty and theming of Disneyland Paris
    Adventure Isle is awesome
    Some rides are better, and others are different but just as excellent as their American cousins
    Disney Dreams was one of the best nighttime shows I've ever seen
    We all loved the Magic Everywhere Parade
    Everything is within walking distance of everything else
    The castle is awesome, especially with the walk-through and dragon

    That being said, there are some things about DLP that we thought were big downgrades from WDW. Some were minor, like the theming at the resorts isn't as detailed as many of the WDW resorts (ie. comparing WL to SL, or BC to NBH) The biggest negative difference is that DLP seems VERY, VERY understaffed. I believe this is where the much of the perceived "lack of magic" stems from.

    Garbage cans were overflowing, and we rarely saw a CM out cleaning up or emptying them.

    When you have a problem, such as the FP machines not working, or to ask for directions, it is difficult to find a CM to help you. When you do, you are likely interrupting them from doing something else. Rarely is there someone staffed who's job it is just to help you.

    There are no CM's giving high-fives with Mickey hands, handing out stickers, or just hanging around to wish you a magical day.

    Before parades and shows (and at other times like when the parks open) there are no CM's doing crowd control, so the crowds tend to get out-of-control.

    Due to lack of CMs, lack of enforcement, or both, guests seem to ignore any rules that are in place in the park, including smoking only in designated areas, staying out of gated areas, lawns, flowerbeds, and fountains.

    Even though the theming is incredible, the upkeep in the parks is woefully lacking. Many handrails are stripped down to the metal, guests have carved their names into many walls and other surfaces, and ride breakdowns are very common.

    We did meet a higher percentage of rude CMs than at WDW (mostly revolving around pin trading), but we also met a few exceptional CMs as we do on each trip to WDW.

    In a nutshell, we enjoyed our time at DLP and as Disney Park fans we're glad we went, but I don't see a return trip anytime in the near future.

    Hope that helped. I tried to be as objective as possible.

    You can see our trip report here: http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=2980770
     
  21. Disneydreamsdancer

    Disneydreamsdancer Mouseketeer

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    You ask a difficult question as everyones opinion is different, you might feel after visiting a Disney park, completely different to how I or other disers may feel.

    I grew up going to DLP, starting in 1992, my very last visit was 2007. At that point I had never been to any other disney parks.

    I was exceptionally sad to see the park quite worn in 2007, flaking paint in fantasyland, full trashcans, and unfortunately we went during a strike of some sort so an awful lot of food places were shut. It was sad to see as I remembered the early days when the park was immaculate. We also encountered no magic from castmembers, and one in particular who refused to sell merchandise to my mom unless she asked in French! His rudeness was exceptional, I speak basic conversational French but my mom does not, and I know it is France but he spoke fluent English and he literally made her repeat him in French before he would ring up the bill. Not impressed. I also had 40 euros stolen from my pocket on our last day. I shouldn't have left it in my pocket, I lived in central London, I know about pickpockets but I made the mistake of thinking Disney was immune and I learned the hard way. However it didn't destroy the magic for me because I knew no different.

    In 2008 I went to Disneyland California and have been 4 times since. I found myself comparing everything to DLP, they both have their strengths and weaknesses.
    DLP is very well planned out, the pathways rarely get blocked by people and even in the summer it doesnt feel overcrowded, also the theming and landscape of the lands is beautiful. However I now truly love DLR and feel more at home there, not more magical, just more at home. DLR is spotless and the castmembers are trained differently, they truly want to make every guest encounter special. You get the feeling theyre not just working a salary job.

    However as I said, everyone has a different opinion and I believe there is a magical Disney park out there for everyone, you just need to get out there and find the one that feels magical and 'home' for you! :)

    Happy travels :)
     

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