Why I Gave Up on Walt Disney World

VandVsmama

DIS Veteran
Joined
Mar 28, 2011
Why was the article posted? Well, it's another point of view other than "Everything is sunshine, lollipops, and rainbows with WDW." I think it's valuable food for thought that Disney parks execs should pay attention to if they wonder why attendance or bookings are down.

My thoughts on the author's article in no particular order:
  1. ADRs - it's true that you pretty much cannot just show up on site and make an ADR. But even at some non-Disney vacation spots, that is true. You have to plan in advance for popular stuff. And pretty much everything at WDW is popular.
  2. ADRs' booking online - The author said basically that the good ol' days of having to pick up the phone and call were better because it took effort...Well, whether you make the ADR on MDE, online, or over the phone, it STILL takes effort. The benefit of having MDE and online bookings as options is that now you no longer have to spend hours on the phone on hold with WDW reservations. Technology has been a blessing with this.
  3. FP+ - I agree w/the author on this. I think that DL's FP system is superior to WDW's. But it's unreasonable to go to WDW expecting a more fluid DL type of experience. They are different resorts. WDW is NOT the same as it was 20 years ago. It's just like Baskin & Robbins ice cream...different flavors of ice cream.
  4. Re: the idea of switching to something like Universal's Express Pass - WDW guests already feel nickel & dime'd. This is a terrible idea.
  5. Putting all the thrill rides in 1 park - This, too, is a terrible idea for many reasons. The author should just go to a Six Flags theme park instead.
  6. "Universal is so much better" - For those that love it, great! I'm glad that they have a wonderful time there. We prefer Disney parks by comparison because, honestly, we are just not interested in entire parks full of intense roller coasters & motion simulators for everything. We like some variety. My DH hates roller coasters. He went to Universal Orlando once...and said, "Never again."
  7. Re: missing the classic Disney dark rides - the author needs to take a trip to Disneyland. DL's Fantasyland is chock full of classic dark rides...Alice in Wonderland, Mr Toad's Wild Ride, Snow White, Pinocchio, Peter Pan. Plus, during the 1st hour of park opening you can ride almost all of those as pretty much a walk on (with the exception of Peter Pan).
  8. Disney Skyliner - I agree w/the author on this topic.
  9. Re: missing the Epcot World Showcase - the author could do an Epcot day during his Universal Orlando trip...kind of like WDW people will do 1 or 2 Universal days during their primarily WDW-focused trips. It doesn't have to be all or nothing. If you really want to go, then go!
 

Beer Me

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jun 3, 2014
Why is this article even posted anywhere? This seems like "one of those people" who never have a good thing to say no matter what they are talking about. Nothing is good enough. I don't like this and I don't want to do that.....then guess what......don't make a single fastpass and don't make a single ADR and just wing it when you get there. He seems like the perfect Universal vacationer so I suggest he stays there.
It reads as the typical laundry list of complaints that can be heard somewhere on this board every day.

The author is certainly entitled to their opinion but I’m not sure why it was posted. It’s just kind of boring and redundant.
 
  • Lumpy1106

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 2, 2010
    I get it though. The decline in service and cleanliness and overall quality of the resort in general is really obvious compared to our experience in the 80s and 90s. I also see the ridiculous price increases has changed our cadence of visits. The amazing experience back in those days is hard to compare to today. It's not fair to discount his opinion because he knows the difference. He has decided that he doesn't like the way it is now and that's fine. For the first time in like 20 years, we are also looking at Universal.
    I agree with this, but I think a lot of the quality issues also have to do with the sheer number of visitors Disney has. How many days are the parks at or near capacity compared to back then? I know I went to WDW during Easter/Spring break a couple of years ago and I'll never do that again! You took your life in your hands just being anywhere near Main Street during the fireworks. It doesn't matter how many CM's you have - there is no way to keep up with those crowds! To be fair there are other factors like the sharp reduction in training for new hires, but the only way to limit visitors is to raise prices...which Disney has done. This has resulted in the other big complaint though - the cost to visit is too darned high.
     

    Lumpy1106

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 2, 2010
    Why was the article posted? Well, it's another point of view other than "Everything is sunshine, lollipops, and rainbows with WDW." I think it's valuable food for thought that Disney parks execs should pay attention to if they wonder why attendance or bookings are down.

    My thoughts on the author's article in no particular order:

    Disney Skyliner - I agree w/the author on this topic
    I'm going to cut Disney some slack on this one when compared to Universal. Hagrid's anyone?
     
  • Linkura

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    May 13, 2017
    Why does the author say WDW resort rooms don't have coffee makers?

    Yes, despite the fact that I am super jaded about Disney World and have moved on to Universal and soon Tokyo Disneyland, that was the first thing that caught my eye about the article.
     

    bryanb

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Sep 10, 2013
    This is the kind of article written by someone who is jaded and needs to take a break from WDW. Hey, I don't blame him... it's just psychology and economics. The less you have of a product/service, the more you're going to value it, and the less you're going to see its glaring flaws. I know. I was that guy for a moment.

    People have complained for decades that Disney is getting worse and worse, and nobody is able to cherry-pick the worst parts than the fans who have had more than their fill. And when prices are rising as they do, it just makes the disconnect even worse.

    I'm not saying his opinions have no merit (I agree with some and disagree with others). But overall, people love WDW, and its popularity can't exist without positive experiences with attractions, shows, atmosphere, and guest service... no matter what the naysayers believe.

    (We get a lot of people every year thinking that Disney suddenly became all about the money and is just coasting... that can't be true every year for decades.)

    So when you get jaded, take a break.. just like I did. And when you're ready, come on back to WDW. Chances are you'll fall in love with it again.
     
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    WGCFV

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Apr 25, 2018
    The article does raise some valid points. Customer service has declined over the past 10 years, and the parks/resorts are indeed less clean. We have all adjusted our expectations accordingly and customer experience is not quite as magical as it had been in the past. Hoping that Josh D'Amaro will help "right the ship"!
     
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  • Starport Seven-Five

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Aug 16, 2019
    I believe that this is pretty easy to fix. Change the app so that you can only get a FastPass when you are physically in the park, and change advanced dining reservations to phone or Guest Relations only. Only allow reservations on the day of with the app.
    I bet if this was enacted the author would complain about how he doesn't want to get to the park at 8am to get a fastpass for Flights of Passage or that the hold times to make a reservation are too long.
     

    Minerva Mouse

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 16, 2012
    I for one almost 100% agree with author, and I don't think it has anything to do with them feeling "entitled" or being "jaded". We too recently decided to "take a break" from DW and let our passes expire. I'm sure we'll be back someday, but for now our focus is on Universal and Disneyland. I love the freedom Disneyland and Universal offers, and we currently enjoy that experience more.

    I applaud this author for speaking their truth and I hope they know their absolutely not alone.
     

    RufusCat

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    May 27, 2019
    Last time I went to Universal I got shouted at twice by team members on the same day and I had to pay top dollar to NOT queue for an hour or two for every single ride. Cast members at WDW are, on the whole, still very nice and you can skip the lines for free. What's not to like? Disney will get my money every time. I just checked the prices for skipping the line for both Universal parks this weekend - $109.99 plus tax for one time skipping per participating ride or $129.99 plus tax for unlimited rides. And these prices are just for ONE day and per person! Those prices deserve their own rant post from someone. I will definitely stick with Disney despite all their perceived faults.
     
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    disneyland_is_magic

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Aug 16, 2016
    Okay I am startled a few of you are coming down so hard on him. Let’s have a lively debate on the points if you want, but a few posts seemed too harsh.


    The fresh vomit in their Pop room sounds insane. Vomit, ugh. Not only is it generally gross, but it can carry sickness. And ZERO compensation, apologies and bad customer service to boot for a vomit room. Pete’s family gets a free night, dinner comped, apologies and a bellhop to pack and move their stuff over a maintenance issue. What?! I find it unnerving, you are at complete mercy of whoever is on duty.
    All the issues mentioned - price increases, the nutty need to plan things out 6 months in advance all certainly resonate with me.

    I really don’t think he is acting entitled at all. He mentioned many of the things they said on the show last week “15 Things that need fixing”. The team says it everyone cheers them on like heroes in battle, an unknown person says it and he is treated like (and called) a whiner.
     
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    monkyby87

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jan 18, 2012
    It reads as the typical laundry list of complaints that can be heard somewhere on this board every day.

    The author is certainly entitled to their opinion but I’m not sure why it was posted. It’s just kind of boring and redundant.
    This was my thought as well. All of these complaints, regardless of how true and valid they are, are mentioned every other day on these boards, and they've been discussed to death (FP changes comes to mind). It read like a standard post on these boards, and not one of your typical articles that provides some sort of insight.
     

    MaidMarian444

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Oct 18, 2019
    Regarding the staff seeming overworked and overwhelmed: Remember that we are seeing record low unemployment, which means the labor market is very tight. It's extremely hard for many employers to find people to hire these days. WDW can increase wages to attract and retain staff, but we have to realize that means prices for guests will be raised as well. And who knows what will happen when the next recession hits and guests no longer have $10K to burn on two weeks at Disney!
     

    Disneyfan754321

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 19, 2019
    This article was in my google feed yesterday, and i thought some ideas are good.. i never thought universal had magic like disney, we have a lot of fun at theme parks across the nation what will work at one would never work at another.
     

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