Disney CEO Bob Iger says raising park prices and increasing capacity is not smart and criticizes previous policies

Feb 08, 2023 in "The Walt Disney Company"

Posted: Wednesday February 8, 2023 5:25pm ET by WDWMAGIC Staff

Speaking at today's quarterly earnings call, Bob Iger repeated his previous comments that he does not think raising Disney them park prices is "smart."

He went as far as to criticize the company's previous pricing policies under Bob Chapek. Iger said, "It is clear that some of our pricing initiatives were alienated to consumers. I have always believed that accessibility is a core value of the Disney brand. We were not perceived to be as accessible or as affordable to many segments, as we probably should have been. After basically paying heed to what we are hearing, we started to address it and the steps that we took were actually were very, very positive. We got really, great reactions to it. "

Since returning as Disney CEO, the parks have seen more lower priced ticketing at Disneyland Resort and elimination of parking fees at Walt Disney World Resort hotels, with more expected.

Former Disney CEO Bob Chapek famously repeated claims that raising prices as demand dictated was the right thing for a business to do.

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GhostHost1000Mar 14, 2023


PSUDisney77Mar 14, 2023

This comment made me look up my itinerary from May 2007. Booked through Travelocity a trip for myself and girlfriend at the time (we were engaged on that trip, still married). Below is what it all included for a total of $1830 bucks. In no way could you even sniff this price today. Yes it's 16 years later but holy crap have prices skyrocketed. 2 Roundtrip tickets from IAD to MCO 5 nights at Caribbean Beach, water view (We were placed in what was called South Trinidad then) 2 Magic Your Way tickets + Park Hopper + 2 days free Travel Protection + Taxes

RSoxNo1Mar 14, 2023

The approach to take is keeping pricing flat and/or completely restructure the ticketing system. The only price I could potentially see would be Genie+, but I'd be very surprised if the tickets themselves see a price cut.

Magenta PantherMar 14, 2023

Another thing that is not smart is neglecting the parks so much and making so many bad creative decisions that the parks are not worth the too-high admissions.

Sorcerer MickeyMar 14, 2023

It’s not at $6, al least in most of the country. But gas is unique in that the price is volatile. I wouldn’t count on it going down anytime soon, though.

MisterPenguinMar 14, 2023

So the price of gas will always be $6/gallon?

Sorcerer MickeyMar 13, 2023

Okay, sure. Let's go back to your original statement then: Inflation means losing the value of one's wages by 4% - 10%. A layoff from a recession is losing the value of one's wages by 100%. and let me rephrase it like this... A layoff from a recession is losing the value of one's wages by 100%, but it will only impact 5% of the workforce. Inflation means losing the value of one's wages by 4% - 10%, but every single human being in the country feels the impact. Now which is worse? EDIT: and just to add personal commentary....a laid off individual can typically find another job eventually. Inflation is rarely ever undone. The Fed's goal is to reign in inflation, not deflate the current price of things.

MisterPenguinMar 13, 2023

I most certainly can when talking about averages. If the prices of everything remained the same but bread went up 100%, would you say we're experiencing 100% inflation? That's not how math works.

Sorcerer MickeyMar 13, 2023

I'm not arguing whether we're in a recession or not. I'm arguing that we don't need it to be considered a recession for many people to suffer. And you can't limit inflation to a value between 4-10% when individual grocery items jump 50-100%, home insurance can quadruple year-to-year, gas remains stubbornly high, etc. etc.

MisterPenguinMar 13, 2023

Well, words have meaning. If the GDP is shrinking and other economic forces are bad, the 'squeezing' is real, and we know what the culprit is: a recession. A recession usually means job losses. (The current layoff craze from tech companies is not indicative of the entirety of the the job market.) The 'squeeze' that's happening now is from a sudden jump in inflation. GDP is positive and job growth is up. So, this is a different monster requiring a different response. Inflation means losing the value of one's wages by 4% - 10%. A layoff from a recession is losing the value of one's wages by 100%. If all the people for the past three years who were predicting a big recession had instead been predicting bad inflation, they'd be crowing about it. (Some were predicting inflation during the time of pandemic subsidies, but that didn't hit until more than a year after those subsidies stopped.) I'm not saying the economy is great when I say there isn't a recession. All I'm saying is there isn't a recession. GDP is positive. That's just a statement of fact.

drnilescraneMar 13, 2023

Without an obvious move like "Buy Pixar" I agree. I am concerned that the current leadership of WDAS isn't fit for purpose but I've got no idea what they do instead. All I'll say is that studio executive is a completely different skillset to director and especially writer. I'm certainly not going to argue that they shouldn't have pushed out JL because they should have. Everybody focused on the "hugging" but the truth of that was more nuanced - he was a Lydia Tár, only letting the chosen few (in the boys club) have any opportunity to have influence. A solid stream of hits, yes, but that house of cards was going to come down eventually when the old guard retired and the troops realized who their leader was. Oh, and a messy drunk.

Sorcerer MickeyMar 13, 2023

Debating the definition of a recession and whether or not we're currently in one is a game of semantics. The truth is hundreds of millions of people are being squeezed for everything they're worth while, on a macro view, the economy continues to grow. A human body can look healthy from the outside, but if the organs are failing to keep up, that's a problem regardless of what it looks like from a zoomed-out view. Call it whatever you like.

MisterPenguinMar 13, 2023

The article I posted states that the determination of a recession is by a certain agency which does take in the two quarter rule of thumb, but at the same time also looks at other indicators. And according to that agency which everybody uses we did not have a recession. Those two quarters of shrinkage were rather minimal and at the same time unemployment was going down and other indicators were good. Certainly if you use that rule of thumb only, then we only had a recession, a mild one, for two quarters, and we're not in one now.

Sorcerer MickeyMar 13, 2023

"Listen" and "acting upon" are two different actions.