Possible long term Disney park crowding strategy?

donaldbuzz&minnie

Happy to be here!
Joined
Feb 13, 2004
I've been wondering lately if Disney is thinking that they will partially solve the parks overcrowding issue by building more and more DVC units. This "captive audience" historically spends less time in the parks (as the novelty and excitement of being at WDW wears off), while still remaining on property.

Granted, DVC members spend less on food, park tickets, and souvenirs than once-in-a-lifetime visitors typically do, but something is not nothing. The high volume of DVC members spending something, but not clogging up the parks + random visitors spending a lot while heavily using the parks seems to me to = a winning strategy.

Thoughts?? :scratchin
 

LittleFishy101

Mouseketeer
Joined
Jan 29, 2018
It’s an interesting thought for sure. I never thought about anything like that. I’m pretty sure disney isn’t making more DVC resorts and units to unclog the parks but more of for more $$$.
 

KAT4DISNEY

Glad to be a test subject
Joined
Mar 17, 2008
What is your observation that Disney believes they have a crowding problem to solve? My own observations are that they created MDE which is to eek more money out of each patron and to spread crowds out around the parks. They then use the data to reduce staffing and certain ride capacities and they reduced overall park hours. Those last 2 are contrary to thoughts that they have over crowding or they would have continued to operate at similar levels or even a little increase to hours.

DVC resorts are money in their pockets now - resorts built and paid for by members. Adding hotel rooms keeps people more captive onsite and it's obviously lucrative. The prices they charge for rooms are astronomically higher than places of similar quality who also make a profit so it's a good gig for them to be in. For us, we still visit the parks as much as always and buy as much as we ever did.
 
  • Cyberc1978

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 19, 2016
    I doubt DVC thought process has anything to do with park revenue. It is about resort insulation from recession. The dues are due no matter what and it provides a cushion for maintenance even if fewer people travel.
    Following that thought wouldn't that mean that Disney should start to convert some of the existing rooms to DVC as they would get parts of the operating expense etc covered?
     

    drusba

    I went to Iowa once, and it was closed.
    Joined
    Aug 19, 1999
    Following that thought wouldn't that mean that Disney should start to convert some of the existing rooms to DVC as they would get parts of the operating expense etc covered?
    Start? They have already done that with AKV (Jambo), Poly and CCV, and also BLT and SSR if you count removing completely hotel rooms and putting up a new DVC. Counting those five, more than half the DVC rooms that already exist at WDW result from conversions or removals of prior rental rooms.
     

    _auroraborealis_

    I like marshmallows. And adult beverages.
    Joined
    Oct 18, 2015
    They are running dry on convertible units. Active conversion of moderates is not going to work, and I suspect they have data to back that. BC/YC/BWI are small and needed for convention unless they are comfortable letting Marriott carry the load for the center at Boardwalk. (Marriott also have their own convention hall there.)

    After they build the Reflections Spa and Rehab Center, my money is solid on the Contemporary Convention Center getting torn down. They just redid the other two, it is shabby, and it is prime real estate.
     

    Cyberc1978

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 19, 2016
    Start? They have already done that with AKV (Jambo), Poly and CCV, and also BLT and SSR if you count removing completely hotel rooms and putting up a new DVC. Counting those five, more than half the DVC rooms that already exist at WDW result from conversions or removals of prior rental rooms.
    Sorry my thoughts was more like instead of building new why not convert "the yacht club" or BWI. AKV, BLT and SSR was build or converted a long time ago the more recent are CCV and Poly. With BLT and AKV(Kidani) DVC build an entire new building imo not really a conversion. With CCV I dont know how much of the new buildings are only DVC and how much regular rooms are.
     

    Chuck S

    DVC Co-Moderator
    Moderator
    Joined
    Feb 6, 2000
    They are running dry on convertible units. Active conversion of moderates is not going to work, and I suspect they have data to back that. BC/YC/BWI are small and needed for convention unless they are comfortable letting Marriott carry the load for the center at Boardwalk. (Marriott also have their own convention hall there.)

    After they build the Reflections Spa and Rehab Center, my money is solid on the Contemporary Convention Center getting torn down. They just redid the other two, it is shabby, and it is prime real estate.
    Interesting thought on the loss of the Contemporary convention facilities. But the convention center area is about 25 to 30 years old...so it maybe scheduled for a rehab, or they may decide to build more DVC there instead. But surely there are some companies and convention groups that may be family based, so they may want facilities close to MK. I'm sure DIsney is weighing all the pros and cons of what to do. Remember, though, that the Contemporary resort itself got pretty shabby and run down...like the shops, Concourse Steakhouse and Chef Mickey's before the concourse was finally rehabbed...so it just may not be a priority at the moment to rehab the convention facilities with $$$ going to the gondolas, theme park upgrades and (hopefully) monorail refurbishment/replacement. A convention area rehab just may temporarily be on the back burner.
     

    _auroraborealis_

    I like marshmallows. And adult beverages.
    Joined
    Oct 18, 2015
    Yeah. That said, the refurb work at the other two is definitely oriented at pointing the majors at those two options, and DVC is a better recession hedge than conventions.
     

    sleepydog25

    Been here awhile
    Joined
    Aug 27, 2004
    One must first assume Disney wants to solve the crowding problem which, I for one, do not think they do. As previously noted, park hours aren't what they used to be and staffing has been reduced, as well. Their goal is to have the parks near full capacity every day they're open. The only thing that would help overcrowding is to build a new park or at least enough additions to existing parks that would compete, size-wise, with a new park. The apparent tendency for DVC is to build ultra-luxurious suites (bungalows, cabins) to get people to buy the resort; however, their points won't stretch that much unless they buy mega points, so they wind up competing for all the studios. All that to say, the crowding at DVC is on full-ahead steam, as well. So, no, I don't think the new builds are to alleviate park overcrowding. They are, as mentioned, a way to guarantee money for decades to come.
     

    Micca

    SAHG: Stay At Home Grandfather
    Joined
    Dec 5, 2000
    I'm thinking DVC members only make up a small percentage of guests on any given day at the parks. If they believe there's an over-crowding problem they'll just continue to raise admission fees until a certain amount of people are priced-out.
     

    DenLo

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jun 3, 2009
    Sorry my thoughts was more like instead of building new why not convert "the yacht club" or BWI. AKV, BLT and SSR was build or converted a long time ago the more recent are CCV and Poly. With BLT and AKV(Kidani) DVC build an entire new building imo not really a conversion. With CCV I dont know how much of the new buildings are only DVC and how much regular rooms are.
    I think the Epcot resorts of YC and BWI have no problem being filled by paid guests and conventions. Disney doesn't need to have them converted to DVC resorts. The only resorts that have been converted on ones that had low occupancy rates for cash guests.

    I'm thinking DVC members only make up a small percentage of guests on any given day at the parks. If they believe there's an over-crowding problem they'll just continue to raise admission fees until a certain amount of people are priced-out.
    I think you are right that DVC guests are just a drop in the bucket on daily basis. The fact that some members don't go to the parks daily even lowers the numbers.

    Regarding the amount DVC members spend at the parks and restaurants, I think that those in studios spend a similar about on food as other hotel guests. There are more and more families staying in studios and cooking and eating a meal in a studio is not really practical for a family of five. Sure I know some guests do, but the majority do not. I also think couples eat out more. And there are some members that drive off property to eat at the chain restaurants to save money. It is easy to fix breakfast and lunch in any villa or order in pizza, but most want to eat out while on vacation. Keep in mind lots of cash guests are trying to save money on food and drinks like members. It would be interesting to see how many members really use the stove and oven on a vacation.

    I think members spend less on souvenirs because after a while you have practically every souvenir you could possibly want. However, I have to admit that I can never resist a really cute dish towel set. I just bought another Christmas one. :blush:
     

    Chuck S

    DVC Co-Moderator
    Moderator
    Joined
    Feb 6, 2000
    I think simple breakfasts and things like sandwiches in the evening are practical in a studio...certainly not any sort of meal that takes a lot of prep. But probably a lot of families do the same at home, too. Breakfast and a light easy to prep dinner, and eat out for lunch while parents are at work and kids are in school.

    I almost always have breakfast in the room, whether I'm in a studio or larger unit. I usually eat a nice lunch in the parks, and then grab something counter service, whether in a park or at the resort, for dinner.
     

    _auroraborealis_

    I like marshmallows. And adult beverages.
    Joined
    Oct 18, 2015
    I think the Epcot resorts of YC and BWI have no problem being filled by paid guests and conventions.
    The other issue is that to convert a reasonable quantity of units at either would make providing room blocks for use of the convention facility over there tough. Big conventions want convenient room blocks. BWI and YC/BC are small to start with, and a room block for a convention at scale to that facility is often 50% of the rooms at each of the 3 as they exist now.

    As a convention provider, you have to be able to offer those blocks. If you convert half of any of those 3 to DVC, it is a huge marketing issue. And conventions are very nice money in a different way than DVC, as conventions also hire for A/V setup and teardown, beverage service, catering, special entertainment and the like that DVC members don't.
     

    Bellecruiser

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    May 23, 2009
    I doubt DVC thought process has anything to do with park revenue. It is about resort insulation from recession. The dues are due no matter what and it provides a cushion for maintenance even if fewer people travel.
    I agree that it’s about insulation from recession, and it’s about cutting costs in the resorts where DVC shares the cost of the front desk, bell services, etc. I also think it has to do with park revenue. My original guide was very upfront about DVC providing a stable base for the parks...we spend money going to them and in them. Maybe not as much or as often as non-DVC visitors, but still it’s a stable chunk. IMO.
     

    Connect

    Disney News and Updates

    Get Daily Email Updates

    Subscribe to the DVCstore.com
    mailing list!

    BUY DVC


    SELL DVC


    DVC POINT CHARTS


    DIS PODCASTS

    Top