Lightning Pass and more Virtual Queues-How does it all affect you as a DVC Member?

KAT4DISNEY

Glad to be a test subject
Joined
Mar 17, 2008
The Magic Kingdom Club originated in 1957 as something California businesses with 200 or more employees (before there was a WDW) used as a perk for their employees, Sea World, Knott's, Magic Mountain all had similar programs. It was a marketing tool. It was basically an admission discount and hotel discount program. For instance, at Disneyland, rather than have the standard ticket books, the MKC garnered you a discounted ticket book where ALL the tickets could be used for E ticket rides. Later, when all day passports were introduced, they were exclusive to the MKC. In the 1980s, an all day passport to Disneyland was $11 plus tax. After many years, they added the Gold Level that an individual could pay for, as well as a "lifetime" version for people 65 and older called Magic (Y)ears club for $35. All versions of the MKC were discontinued several years ago (late 1990s?). Think of the original MKC like the corporate discount programs we see today for airlines and car rentals. In fact, the MKC did have a discount code for National Car Rental.

It was not a version of Tables in Wonderland, though in the later years it did give a few dining discounts.
The Magic Kingdom Club lasted to around 2000. I loved it - free membership and you got discounted tickets and hotel rooms. It was the loyalty program of the day. Towards the end they kicked in with a small fee before ending it.
 

Chuck S

DVC Co-Moderator
Moderator
Joined
Feb 6, 2000
The Magic Kingdom Club lasted to around 2000. I loved it - free membership and you got discounted tickets and hotel rooms. It was the loyalty program of the day. Towards the end they kicked in with a small fee before ending it.
I know, my Mom got it through her employer until they started charging, then we just got our own accounts. But as they say...all good things must come to an end.
 

jimim

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jan 4, 2011
I'm not paying for ride passes in any form.

I don't mind virtual cues.

I am going to miss ME a lot. . . . it made the trips soooooo easy. I stress a lot in airports. I'm horrible to fly with, ever since I missed a flight 15 years ago. lol

We are just not going back right now. Should be there today actually. Cx'ed it. Booked for new year's. cx'ed it. Planned rebooking. none in sight. . . beach twice this year and a new loaded up bass boat for myself to share with my family. I am much much happier on the water and away from people I learned last year.

Does DVC value me as a member. I assume no.

Does Disney value me as a DVC member. A hard no.

Disney started to die for me when WDCC's was scrapped years ago. That collection made me so happy and they took it from us.

Sorry for the negative post. Once I'm on the water tomorrow catching fish I'll be happy again. This thread kinda bummed me out.
 

jimim

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jan 4, 2011
Ding, ding, ding! :teeth:
I have owned many a boats. Bass, river jets, others. All used. This will be my first new cause its my forever boat at least till I retire to the ocean and then it will be my ocean retirement boat. I just can’t desidexif I want to deal with a river jet motor or give up the river and go prop. I have fished my whole life multiple days a week. I love for it but being home and spending even more time on the water has really given me new insite plus my kids r getting older and they are loving it more and more on the water.
 

Evita_W

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jun 30, 2007
On the earnings call they were discussing increasing per customer spend by creating a “loyalty program” a lot of people interpreted this to be related to redesign of the AP but I was thinking about it more in terms of an overall experience redesign incorporating some of what pp have mentioned in this post. More perks for people spending more or with larger spending/visit history. I envision a system that is like the cruise lines (not exactly what DCL does as they ranked by number of cruises while other lines gave credit for the number of days sailed and added “extra credit” for suite sails).
What if they use a similar card color system for park/resort visits? This could apply to DVC as well as guests at all levels of resorts. Earn perks by the category of hotel/number of ticket days and “climb up” with repeated visits. This would allow the customer the feeling of getting perks based on how much they spend. It would also allow Disney to increase the return per customer by motivating them to spend more/visit more to “earn” more perks, even if the perks (like fast passes) don’t cost Disney much. This would be on par with the OP statement of charging more for delivering less than they did historically but most people would accept it, even if most of the perks you need to indirectly pay for were free at one time. They would have to have an option for the “once in a lifetime” visitors as well and that would have to have a pretty high cost. I’m just tossing it out as an idea because I also feel that we paid way too much for what we got on our last visit and will not be going back until more options exist.
I really think APs as we knew them are going to end at WDW once DLR announces their new program as I think they will have a unified system across at least the U.S. parks, possibly all of them except Tokyo (and maybe even Tokyo gets to join in). It would make sense and might help reduce the number of duplicate rides we keep getting at the parks.


But I think I missed something, what is a Lightning Pass?
 

Helaman

Kein Traumprinz
Joined
May 18, 2018
Rumored to be WDW version of the unlimited line skip pass. Rumored for a good fee $100-300 per day per person. Just rumors for now. Universal and Six Flags has a version of this.
Disneyland Paris offered this before they closed during the pandemic.
 

zavandor

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jul 22, 2011
Disneyland Paris offered this before they closed during the pandemic.
In Paris is was in addition to the regular paper FP and I don't think had any kind of visible impact on queues. It was so expensive that very few people used it.
Lightning passes already exist in WDW, they're called VIP tours. As long as it's priced accordingly and it's just a move to cut on the CM accompanying the tour, it won't have an impact. The problems arise when they price it low enough that many people want to use it. In that case it would replace regular FP and I'd be really annoyed.

In Paris they sold also inividual FP valid for one attraction, which I have to say it's the lowest and meanest form of cash grab possible in a theme park.
 

CJLove79

Hakuna Matata, What a wonderful phrase!!!!!
Joined
Jan 22, 2015
Personally, in my opinion, if this Lightning Pass is true, I'm all for it!! I'll gladly pay $300 per person per park day to go through the FP+ lines for every ride. I feel its a value because you don't have to worry about reserving in advance anymore, you won't have a set FP limit & it gives guest flexibility. True, its going to stink that Disney may charge a premium to it. But Disney has been gradually charging premium for "perks" that use to be free the last few years. And after the billions they lost last year, I'm not surprised that they're trying to re-coup their losses. So far, most of the people I've spoken to about this don't like it, which is cool. But one thing they all have in common is that they're locals. My response to them is that Disney World's bread & butter is guests like me who don't live nearby. And I wouldn't be surprised if Disney comes with a pricing that's a little cheaper for locals. Anyway, I truly hope this rumor is true, my trip is this November during anniversary season & adding this paid feature would be helpful in avoiding the expected long lines.
 
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Nabas

DIS Veteran
Joined
May 5, 2013
People complain no matter who the CEO is. They didn't like Eisner, they didn't like Iger, and now they don't like Chapek.
When Disney switched to an all inclusive ticket for the opening of Epcot in 1982, many complained loudly.

Back in the day when admissions was charged separately than rides (A, A, C, D, and E tickets), many would buy just a handful of attractions but still enjoy a full day of entertainment at the Magic Kingdom.
 

sleepydog25

Been here awhile
Joined
Aug 27, 2004
This is not intended to become a complaints thread. Quite the contrary. I simply want to know if we, as loyal DVC members, are the only ones feeling more and more squeezed out with almost each and every passing month. Is it just us?

Keeping it simple, no, it isn't just you. I've owned DVC for 15 years and the relative "value" has dwindled through the years. Disney's pricing on all things continues to easily outpace inflation; there is a huge dumbing down of menus; casual entertainment (street performers, chance meeting of characters, et. al.) has nosedived; ticketed events have mushroomed; perks (which were always just that, I know) have dwindled; and crowding everywhere has grown to precipitous numbers.

That last item is key to me--while Disney has lessened the experience, by pretty much any measure, crowds still come. Personally, I don't see that changing anytime soon. People will continue to flock to Disney, regardless of pricing, lack of thrills, lessening of staffing, reduction of hours, and discontinuance of guest favorites. Regardless of who is CEO, Disney's basic model has remained constant--more earnings, less labor costs, decreased customer satisfaction but not to a tipping point. Disney walks a fine line and will continue to do so.

I've enjoyed reading this thread and most of the posts. There have been several similar ones over the years, and to this point, Disney has not suffered (pre-Covid). Again, to answer your question above, "is it just us?" No, it isn't. However, the hard truth is that Disney will find a replacement for every one of us who has reduced our trips and slowed our spending at the World. I simply don't see that pattern changing anytime soon.
 

Evita_W

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jun 30, 2007
So here is an interesting thought, if this is like Universals Express Pass, do you think they will give it free if you are staying at certain onsite hotels or certain room levels like Universal does?

Maybe those staying club level or maybe DVC members when staying on a reservation that is made completely with points that were purchased direct? Or only deluxe hotels?

And maybe not free, but substantially discounted?

If they do it right, this could be the ultimate direct purchase perk for DVC.
 

Drewmama

Mouseketeer
Joined
Jun 3, 2016
I feel everyone's frustration with the minuscule $10 discount on the Halloween event. It is so small and limited that it is practically insulting. A similar discount on a Lightening Pass would also be terrible of course but not unexpected at this point.... I don't think them taking away free FP+ is a foregone conclusion though if they go with the Lightening Pass upcharge. Universal maintains two tiers of their skip the line pass so I don't see why Disney couldn't have a tier system; however, I agree removing free FP+ is the most likely outcome of a Lightening Pass system if I am being realistic. I also concede that unless it is significantly limited in numbers it would most likely have a large impact on standby lines for the average guest. I haven't been to Universal in ages and I am curious how that plays out there.
That's how I felt about the DVC discount on a Disneyland annual pass. I think it was something like $20.
 

ziravan

Welcome Home
Joined
Apr 4, 2014
This is not intended to become a complaints thread. Quite the contrary. I simply want to know if we, as loyal DVC members, are the only ones feeling more and more squeezed out with almost each and every passing month. Is it just us?

Keeping it simple, no, it isn't just you. I've owned DVC for 15 years and the relative "value" has dwindled through the years. Disney's pricing on all things continues to easily outpace inflation; there is a huge dumbing down of menus; casual entertainment (street performers, chance meeting of characters, et. al.) has nosedived; ticketed events have mushroomed; perks (which were always just that, I know) have dwindled; and crowding everywhere has grown to precipitous numbers.

That last item is key to me--while Disney has lessened the experience, by pretty much any measure, crowds still come. Personally, I don't see that changing anytime soon. People will continue to flock to Disney, regardless of pricing, lack of thrills, lessening of staffing, reduction of hours, and discontinuance of guest favorites. Regardless of who is CEO, Disney's basic model has remained constant--more earnings, less labor costs, decreased customer satisfaction but not to a tipping point. Disney walks a fine line and will continue to do so.

I've enjoyed reading this thread and most of the posts. There have been several similar ones over the years, and to this point, Disney has not suffered (pre-Covid). Again, to answer your question above, "is it just us?" No, it isn't. However, the hard truth is that Disney will find a replacement for every one of us who has reduced our trips and slowed our spending at the World. I simply don't see that pattern changing anytime soon.
Not necessarily. True, DVC is a captive audience, but that works both ways. If DVC is full of members taking resort only trips or worse, using their rooms as springboards to Universal, there’s nothing Disney can do but watch those opportunities for more income float away.

They can take away much, and reduce the experience greatly, but what they can not do is reduce the absolute right of members to use the facilities. A DVC membership that doesn’t consume the product would be devastating.

We may be a captive audience, but we also hold captive a large chunk of on-site spending potential.

This is one of the ways DVC has miscalculated on their view of resales, in my opinion. Or rather, it’s silo thinking. DVD believes that because resales make them no money, they are horrible tolerances that detract from their direct sales. Nothing could be further from reality:

DVC resales replace tired (non-spending) owners with new owners eager to throw their dollars at the mouse. That’s a great benefit to Disney if not DVC.

But to the point, Disney can’t just replace disaffected DVC members because we still own the keys to the buildings. The issue isn’t whether we’ll come, it’s whether will spend money at the mouse - and how much - while we’re here.

Catering to the DVC crowd isn’t bad business - it really comes down to whom is holding whom hostage?
 

DavidRoss

Mouseketeer
Joined
Nov 23, 1999
The Magic Kingdom Club originated in 1957 as something California businesses with 200 or more employees (before there was a WDW) used as a perk for their employees, Sea World, Knott's, Magic Mountain all had similar programs. It was a marketing tool. It was basically an admission discount and hotel discount program. For instance, at Disneyland, rather than have the standard ticket books, the MKC garnered you a discounted ticket book where ALL the tickets could be used for E ticket rides. Later, when all day passports were introduced, they were exclusive to the MKC. In the 1980s, an all day passport to Disneyland was $11 plus tax. After many years, they added the Gold Level that an individual could pay for, as well as a "lifetime" version for people 65 and older called Magic (Y)ears club for $35. All versions of the MKC were discontinued several years ago (late 1990s?). Think of the original MKC like the corporate discount programs we see today for airlines and car rentals. In fact, the MKC did have a discount code for National Car Rental.

It was not a version of Tables in Wonderland, though in the later years it did give a few dining discounts.
You are correct Chuck. It was called simply the Disney Dining Plan. Thanks for so quickly pointing out the error.
 

RivShore

DIS Veteran
Joined
Sep 27, 2019
I know, my Mom got it through her employer until they started charging, then we just got our own accounts. But as they say...all good things must come to an end.
If I remember correctly, you also were automatically enrolled in MKC for free, if you were a Disney shareholder. We just got rid of a small Magic Kingdom Club travel bag that they sent out way back when. Ahh, the good old days...though I'll take the $175 stock price instead.
 

GoingSince1990

DIS Veteran
Joined
Oct 31, 2018
Personally, in my opinion, if this Lightning Pass is true, I'm all for it!! I'll gladly pay $300 per person per park day to go through the FP+ lines for every ride. I feel its a value because you don't have to worry about reserving in advance anymore, you won't have a set FP limit & it gives guest flexibility. True, its going to stink that Disney may charge a premium to it. But Disney has been gradually charging premium for "perks" that use to be free the last few years. And after the billions they lost last year, I'm not surprised that they're trying to re-coup their losses. So far, most of the people I've spoken to about this don't like it, which is cool. But one thing they all have in common is that they're locals. My response to them is that Disney World's bread & butter is guests like me who don't live nearby. And I wouldn't be surprised if Disney comes with a pricing that's a little cheaper for locals. Anyway, I truly hope this rumor is true, my trip is this November during anniversary season & adding this paid feature would be helpful in avoiding the expected long lines.
Charging $300 per person would kill Disney’s VIP tour business stone dead. A 7-hour tour for up to 10 people costs between $2975 and $5250 depending on the day and season. Very few people indeed would choose the tour over a $300 per person unlimited fastpass. With the VIP Tours, Disney is effectively already offering a paid, all-day FP option, while avoiding the torrent of “GREEDY DISNEY NOW CHARGING FOR FASTPASS” headlines which would inevitably result from offering a Universal-style all-day FP option (for which Disney would probably charge more like $500-$700 per person per day).
 

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