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Where is Disney going with Magic Bands?

Discussion in 'Disney Rumors and News' started by DPCummerbund, Oct 28, 2013.

  1. Hollowellfam6

    Hollowellfam6 New Member

    For those of you guessing that EMH will go away, how can you state that Disney is not making any money off the EMH? Do you honestly think that if the concept was not plausible they would have cut it long before now?

    Disney is a corporate entity, with shareholders and they are attempting to gain as much information from their guests as see patterns and find out what makes a typical guest tick. Disney got sideswiped from HP and now is trying to play catchup. They are and will always be the kings in central Florida; however what they are attempting to do, from my perspective, is to make every park a full day park to get the most out of every guest they can. And also to make the guest experience the best i the industry, which they have slipped some in my opinion.

    Fastpass+ is here to stay, and Legacy Fastpass are going the way of the dinosaurs but the next new experience MDE or something else, but its only a wait and see as we can only speculate as to what it may be. Changes happen for the simple reason to make things better, sometimes they don't always work as planned, but I can guarantee you that with the supposed $1B behind MB and MDE, this plan was thought out extensively. IMO
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  3. Dallydown

    Dallydown New Member

    The bigger goal will be to get more money from us.:rotfl2:
  4. lockedoutlogic

    lockedoutlogic New Member

    Good question...it depends on the statistical model they're using. They probably have something that says there is an inherent benefit to it...whether in addition room bookings or ancillaries. I do know for a fact that the program has not been a profit driver. Profit is not in getting people into the parks an hour early so they can grab fastpasses and ride hop. That costs disney money (no...no profit in tickets either). If you notice...people run past the giftshops on their way to the rides on early mornings...that's practically a death sentence.

    There also has been a very distinct corporate shift the last few years at TWDC...."making" money hasn't been enough...its now shifting to "making a minimum of X % of money"...which is dangerous to consumers/fans

    Disney in no way got "sideswiped" by Universal. Universal has made alot of new revenues and packed them in...but disney's profits have increased right along. And that is why disney can do whatever the hell they want - including nothing. They always make more...period.
    They may be trying to increase the appeal of their parks longterm - but that is far from certain. The theory of the "feeder parks"..i.e. smaller day parks feed their attendees into the larger/more shopping laden areas...is a valid theory (i'm convinced). And while their offerings and service have most definitely slipped...that is a longterm concern - if at all. In the short term, they have been and are raking it in.

    Changes in Walt Disney World happen to make more money...period. If you want to look for the reasons as to "how" and "Why"...you need to start there and work your way back.
  5. Son of Gadsden

    Son of Gadsden Sometimes you're the hammer, sometimes you're the

    I find it hard to believe that Disney would eliminate EMH.

    It's a huge draw for people like me and DW in our early 20s. We don't have kids and we get to experience a less crowded park. Plus, I just like the park better at night. We prefer to go to the park from 11am-midnight as opposed to 9am-10pm. It's just the inverse of rope drop.

    At the end of the day, I'm also more likely to spend more money. Whatever is in my pocket is what is left for the days budget, with no more meals or expenses. If I've still got $20 in my pocket and am walking out of the park, I'm more likely to buy a shirt or something with it.
  6. MichaelaF

    MichaelaF New Member

    We were there for the initial testing a couple of weeks ago (Oct 16-23) at Wilderness Lodge. Based on a conversation with a manager there about MM+, they are eventually going to implement more "pay more get more" options for it. The example used was something like the lights in the walkway at Epcot in Future World lighting up as you walk through it (so long as you have your band on and have paid for it!). So I'm guessing it will be multi-tiered, like the Magic Your Way tickets. You want Cinderella to know your child's name and birthday when you see her? You want a fountain to come to life when you walk by? Pay up, ya'll.

    Base level gets you some magic.

    Next level....EVER MORE MAGIC.



    (I'm also guessing this means each tier will have more FP+ options.)
  7. Hollowellfam6

    Hollowellfam6 New Member

    Statistics can say what ever the data inputter is trying to make them say. I'm just pointing out that Disney does not do anything without completely evaluating all aspects and costs associated with any project.

    I disagree a bit, I personally don't think that Disney felt that the increase that HP gave Uni would be as great. I admit that Disney's profits have increased over the same period of time, and I fully understand why. However, I do suspect that the powers that be did not see the power of HP, why else would Avatar even be considered? I admit that HP and Avatar are polar opposites; however why would Dis venture away from what its core has always been.

    I don't think the feeder park concept is accurate, I think they are trying to get 4 solid full day parks, and having the feeders as being the new Disney Springs and other outside park adventures.(i.e. resorts, water parks, things like that). I do agree with your theory of getting feeders to plow park attendance, but I admit that parks are too expensive to just be half day or smaller entities, they are trying to get the most out of all of the parks.

    I TOTALLY agree it is all about the money, that's why they are very calculated in what they are doing rather than just the Eisner era. I see vast changes behind the scenes rather than in front for the guests to see. I feel that Disney is doing a lot behind the scenes to get the most out of what they have, and not trying to add. All be it they will add, to keep them coming, but it will be more pronounced behind the scenes. IMO. I agree with everything you are saying, we both know that for Disney it's all about the money.....it will always be about the money now!!!
  8. Mrs. Ciz

    Mrs. Ciz New Member

    OMG your post made me laugh so hard - especially the top level line! I don't think I would pay for lights lighting up, a fountain or such "extra magic", but I'm sure some people would.
  9. MichaelaF

    MichaelaF New Member

    I'll also add....

    To be honest, I don't understand all the hate on the Magic Bands. Are we supposed to be mad that they are collecting data? Or are we supposed to be mad that a corporation - that most of us enjoy, to whatever degree, or we wouldn't be on these boards - is implementing a business strategy that is designed to make more money? Because if that's the case, I'm not sure when we were all taught that Disney is the ultimate altruistic company. They are in the entertainment business. They are not MAKING YOU spend any money you are not WILLINGLY spending.

    We had a number of hiccups with our bands when we were there the other week, and a number of issues with the MyDisneyExperience app and website for a couple of those days. But it's also JUST getting rolled out. I fully expect them to make changes and fix those problems. In every instance, the cast members were very gracious and helpful and apologetic about the situation. Overall, I found the bands to be very useful and handy. I genuinely don't understand the backlash. If you want to make money off Disney, buy stock. If you don't want to give Disney any money, stay home. But don't blame them for doing what they - as a business - are meant to be doing. All the complaints about Disney being "all about the money"...well then why are you still giving them yours, if that is upsetting to you?
  10. jtwibih

    jtwibih New Member

    I was thinking this exact same thing the other night. I feel like Disney is not even really making an attempt to "sell" this as a positive thing (whether it really is positive for the customer or not). It seems like a half hearted effort for something that costs $1.5bil to implement. There are WAY too many questions (go see the TPAaS board) that are still unanswered. I get that this is still in the testing phase but I would go ahead and call this 80% implemented with what we are hearing about Legacy FP. Still though there are too many questions for offsite guests and number of FP+ people should/could/will get once fully implemented. The panic this has caused is probably overstated a little on the boards because people are more willing to talk when something negative happens over something positive but it's tough to ignore.

    I'm with you on "benefit of the doubt".
  11. Mrs. Ciz

    Mrs. Ciz New Member

    Honestly, I don't think the magic bands are a bad thing. Sure, they could have had more of the kinks worked out before they started testing them on people, but all in all not a bad thing. However, I am not a fan of the FP+ component. Making reservations 60 days ahead bothers me the most. I wish they had left that part alone because it worked well for me. At some point I will be visiting WDW again and I hope the whole FP+ issue will not be as bad as I imagine it will be. Only time will tell. I'll plan my next visit after all this is thoroughly sorted out.
  12. tjkraz

    tjkraz <img src="http://www.wdwinfo.com/images/silver.jpg

    I am truly excited about it. From my perspective, the two worst aspects of FastPass have always been:

    1) A theme park visit structured around dashes from one FP machine to the next
    2) The "take it our leave it" approach to dishing out FP return times

    FP+ addresses both of those items. Ride times are secured weeks, days or minutes before arriving at the park--or after entering the park--and they are ride times of my own choosing. Now I can tour the park in a logical manner rather than dashing from land-to-land collecting FP tickets.

    I'm not a watch/wristband guy so you won't see me sporting it as a fashion accessory. But the convenience is obvious. And the possibilities for integrating RFID tech seem limitless.

    Go check out the theme parks board and witness the excitement that receiving a box of MagicBands is generating for people with WDW hotel reservations.

    In a vacuum, I can see where EMH may not represent a park's most profitable operating hours. However, it's one of the dwindling number of reasons to motivate guests to pay $400 per night for a room that's worth $150.

    If Disney were to eliminate EMH, they would unquestionably lose SOME hotel business. And less hotel business means fewer people immersed in the "magic", dining exclusively at Disney venues, drinking Disney cocktails, shopping at Disney boutiques, renting Disney water mice, etc.

    The pressure WDW has felt from Harry Potter / USF is debatable. But I think we can agree that pressure is greater whenever a guest is pushed off-site.

    So the real question isn't whether or not EMH is profitable. It's what Disney stands to lose via hotel/dining/shopping/recreation revenue when guests decide to stay a couple miles up the road because there's less value in Disney's inflated hotel prices.
  13. DPCummerbund

    DPCummerbund New Member

    I agree with this. I know it's surprising to many posters here, but I'm EXCITED about the new system. Granted, I don't have any plans to visit the park in the next few months, but I'm excited for its actual rollout.

    As tjkraz said, there really is only one viable strategy for park planning - hit the park that's having EMH at rope drop, run to one of the attractions that will have the longest lines, grab some fastpasses, hit the ride on standby while you're there, head to the next line, grab another set of fastpasses, etc.

    Yeah, if you're hitting Epcot for EMH, you have YOUR CHOICE of whether you want to run to TT or run to Soarin'. A choice of TWO rides! With FP+, you can schedule FP for both of them, and then hit the park whenever you want. It's already MORE flexible than an Epcot touring plan. And if/when Disney adds more options, it will only get better.

    Right now, you have the ILLUSION of choice. Sure, you can choose to wait until late morning, hit the gift shops first, or whatever, but that's not the BEST choice if you want to avoid lines. If you want to avoid lines, there are very few plans that make sense. You can currently choose a different plan that will lead to longer wait times if you want, but you'll be able to do that with FP+ too.
  14. mickeyfan0805

    mickeyfan0805 New Member

    I guess I'd put us in the 'cautiously excited' category.

    We came to love Disney while FP was fully in play, so we've never done it any other way. That said, the FP+ option is getting us excited about the possibility of touring Disney in a new way. We're already considering a camping trip in 2015 that would have us there for nearly two weeks. In the past, we never would have done a summer trip, and we never would have gone for that long. With FP+, however, we can get up in the morning while it's cool to do some second-tier rides that don't get long until later in the day, spend the afternoons bowling, at movies, at the pool, at water parks, etc..., then return for the evening with FP+ in place for some major rides while it is cooling down (getting in 3 major attractions plus some smaller ones in the evening).

    I'm disappointed that we likely will be limited to 3 per day (we've often used 5-6 between two parks in a day), but we'll find ways to make it work and will spend less time running from place to place to get FP's on the other end of a park. I'm not 100% sold, but I see some real potential!
  15. quikah

    quikah New Member

    The 60 day reservation for FP+ is the big problem. If it winds up like the dining reservation where I will need to be up at 12AM to reserve a TSMM FP 60 days before my trip it will be a complete failure in my eyes. Will they eventually require a CC and charge you $10 for every ride you don't show up for?
  16. Mrs. Ciz

    Mrs. Ciz New Member

    I posted something very similar in another thread. I am kind of worried it will turn out like that!

    The 60 day reservation is my least favorite thing about FP+. My 2nd least favorite is the current limit of 3 FP+, but this could change so I'm not going to get my knickers in a twist about it yet.
  17. MichaelaF

    MichaelaF New Member

    I could see the 60 days advance booking of FP+ being problematic. That would be annoying for sure - we generally made our FP+ on the website in the mornings, and then adjusted as needed on the fly via the app (with the exception of the first day, when neither the site nor the app were working). I really liked that, honestly. More than once we were able to change a time or change an attraction if we knew we weren't going to make one of the FP times. I definitely don't want to do that 60 days in advance. I remember on the podcast they were guessing that they would likely reserve SOME space for "same day" and some for advance. I hope that is the case.
  18. MichaelaF

    MichaelaF New Member

    When I heard about the "new" talking Mickey at MK, my first thought was: "this is the kind of "Extra Magic" that I bet we're going to have to pay more for". I think Disney knows how to market that kind of extra magic stuff especially to kids and parents. Half of the fun of going to WDW with your kids is seeing them light up when they meet a character they love or go on a ride that they are in awe of. And it's going to be hard not to want those things for your kids, when you (and they) see others able to experience. My guess is....that's where they are gonna get us!
  19. Marvindude

    Marvindude New Member

    Wherever Disney goes with the Magic Bands, just think if you had the job of trying to make all of the guest happy. No matter what you come up with its wrong.
  20. lockedoutlogic

    lockedoutlogic New Member

    The point?

    If its "poor Disney...we should all be grateful"... I think thought took a left turn somewhere
  21. wisblue

    wisblue New Member

    My theory is that, at some point in the future, the standby lines as we know them will no longer exist for the biggest attractions. There will be a certain number of spots for the ride allocated to FP+ and, once the standby line reaches a certain point, people will present their bands at the attraction entrance to get a time at which they should return to the standby line.

    The standby line would be kept long enough to provide a continuous supply of guests for boarding, but instead of someone physically waiting in line for 60-90 minutes or more, they will only be in the standby line for 20-30 minutes and will be free to browse shops, grab a snack, or enjoy a minor attraction in the area while they wait for their return time. For example, instead of standing in a 90 minute line for Test Track, someone could spend an hour or so browsing through Mouse Gear or Innoventions, or getting something to eat, before getting into the line.

    This is similar to the test done at RNRC a couple of years ago (when standby guests were given a boarding group number and allowed to wait in an area behind the attraction) and what is now being done at Dumbo. It would help achieve Disney's goal of having people free to spend money instead of being held captive in line.

    In essence, for major attractions, you'd be replacing the old FP/standby system with a reserved FP/standby FP system. It would be like a restaurant giving guests a beeper to notify them when a table is ready for them.

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