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  • News Park Reservations and Virtual Queues Are Here To Stay

    Speaking at the JP Morgan Global Technology Conference, Disney CEO Bob Chapek talked a little bit about some of the technology that has helped the Disney Parks operate safely during the pandemic. In particular, he spoke about two technologies – the Disney Park Pass theme park reservation system and virtual queues.

    Of course, virtual queues were in place before the pandemic with the debut of Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance in December 2019. With today’s announcement that WEB SLINGERS: A Spider-Man Adventure would be utilizing a similar system, it’s easy to see how virtual queues would be utilized going forward.

    Perhaps most interesting is that Chapek reiterated that the Disney Park Pass reservation system would be used even in a post-pandemic environment as a means of managing demand and ticket pricing.

    At this point, it should come as no surprise that Disney sees long-term value in the Disney Park Pass reservation system after Josh D’Amaro listed it as a technology that was “here to stay” all the way back in August 2020.

    Source: BLOGMICKEY.COM
    Last edited by SuperHappyCM; 05-24-2021, 08:24 PM.

  • #2
    I am all for the park reservation system as someone that is a "tourist" guest I heavily plan my trips and the park reservation system is a great tool, I will enjoy it even better if it helps to control crowd influx during weekends and peak times. The virtual queues system I am less sold on for the long term, I can see using it to elevate long lines for new attractions but I do not want to see it replace the fast pass/ max pass program for all attractions.
    BGood! It's not just my motto its my name!

    Comment


    • #3
      I would not at all be surprised if the reservation system stayed in place. It helps them identify and control demand and there is a precedent for this in lots of other attractions around the world. Quite frankly I am surprised that it has taken Disney this long to implement something like this in either of its American parks.

      Agree with mickdaddy about the virtual queues, I don't mind standing in line; especially for some of the more well themed attractions, and the system is a poor replacement for the current fastpass and maxpass systems. The park was designed to hold a large number of people in lines, and I know the current management philosophy is that these people standing in lines cannot buy things, but the overcrowding you may be solving by cutting back on APs would likely just return if the thousands of people in Pirates/HM/Splash/SM/Small Word and the rest were wandering the streets.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by linkeq2001 View Post
        I would not at all be surprised if the reservation system stayed in place. It helps them identify and control demand and there is a precedent for this in lots of other attractions around the world. Quite frankly I am surprised that it has taken Disney this long to implement something like this in either of its American parks.

        Agree with mickdaddy about the virtual queues, I don't mind standing in line; especially for some of the more well themed attractions, and the system is a poor replacement for the current fastpass and maxpass systems. The park was designed to hold a large number of people in lines, and I know the current management philosophy is that these people standing in lines cannot buy things, but the overcrowding you may be solving by cutting back on APs would likely just return if the thousands of people in Pirates/HM/Splash/SM/Small Word and the rest were wandering the streets.
        Exactly. And crowded walkways are all to Disney's advantage. In addition to making more customers available for merch and food sales (especially impulse buying at high-markup/high-profit ODV carts), crowded walkways play to the old truism of "a picture is worth a thousand words." As much as numbers on spreadsheets, photos of a packed park are visceral proof to Wall Street that Disney's money machine is happily going full blast.

        Sure, the customers complain about crowding -- but they always come back. And that's the key. No matter how crowded (or expensive), they always come back.


        "Disneyland is often called a magic kingdom because
        it combines fantasy and history, adventure and learning,
        together with every variety of recreation and fun,
        designed to appeal to everyone."

        - Walt Disney

        "Disneyland is all about turning movies into rides."
        - Michael Eisner

        "It's very symbiotic."
        - Bob Chapek

        Comment


        • #5
          VQs are ruining the imagined utopia of the anti-AP crowd!

          All this proves is that Disney never cared about fixing the crowd problem from a guest perspective. The park reservations only really fix the crowding on their end as it allows them more oversight and control in running the park. The VQs follows this logic as they can control guest entering which lines.

          Comment


          • #6
            I’m all for a reservation system. Most vacations, concerts and sporting events require you to make some sort of advanced plan. Why should theme parks be any different?

            Of course I will miss the days of waking up on a whim and driving a couple hours and spending the day but I will absolutely prefer that they’ve planned for attendance.
            You know, I have the strangest feeling that I've seen that ship before. A long time ago, when I was very young. ―George Darling
            It seems to me that we have a lot of story yet to tell. ― Walt Disney

            Comment


            • #7
              Same day reservations are already available, even with reduced capacity. No, they aren't available every day, but just last week there were a few days where you could get same-day reservations for both parks. The time will come when reservation capacity will be 90 percent, or higher. There will only be a few days each year where the reservations sell out.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by PhotoMatt View Post
                Same day reservations are already available, even with reduced capacity. No, they aren't available every day, but just last week there were a few days where you could get same-day reservations for both parks. The time will come when reservation capacity will be 90 percent, or higher. There will only be a few days each year where the reservations sell out.
                And that’s great. I just think a trend toward planning and less people banking on same day will equate to a better experience for all.
                You know, I have the strangest feeling that I've seen that ship before. A long time ago, when I was very young. ―George Darling
                It seems to me that we have a lot of story yet to tell. ― Walt Disney

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Mom kissed Walt View Post
                  I’m all for a reservation system. Most vacations, concerts and sporting events require you to make some sort of advanced plan. Why should theme parks be any different?

                  Of course I will miss the days of waking up on a whim and driving a couple hours and spending the day but I will absolutely prefer that they’ve planned for attendance.
                  Oh they want you to still be able to wake up, decide to spend the day, and drive on down. They just want you to have to buy a day ticket to do it.
                  "Disneyland is a work of love. We didn't go into Disneyland just with the idea of making money." - ​Walt Disney

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I hope all attractions won't go this route. I really enjoy a unique Disney Day. Where I go with someone for the day and just walk around and do what we happen to see is nearby,. I took my 70 year old mother 2 years ago. And we enjoyed just walking around and choosing what to ride, or where to eat based on how each place looked. For food, we enjoyed talking to cast members to choose food that my Mom could eat and asked for suggestions. Like how we ask Wait staff at other restaurants for suggestions. I understand why they think this is a good idea, but I don't agree with it. If they limit crowds, then, after the pandemic what is wrong with having some lines at 20 minutes and big rides at 60 or more? What did it hurt? We always buy a souvenir at the end of the day on Main Street. And don't want to make a reservation all day long while we sit somewhere. Maybe I'm in the minority here, but I guess it will just be one less Disney guest for them. I'm sure they will make it up with other guests.
                    We got Knotts tickets to go in July, just $50, and they have the fun live music with cast from Disney's old T Party Band playing. Can't wait. And no need to dig out my phone every half hour to figure out what to eat and where I can eat at what time, and what ride to go on at any particular time. We'll just walk around and do what we want to do.
                    Good luck everyone

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Reservations are fine, maybe even good. Virtual queues sound terrible and could potentially strongly impact the experience (and the philosophy that people will spend more time buying souvenirs or eating meal after meal if they don't have to wait in ride lines is DCA 1.0, "if there are no rides and only shops then imagine the merchandise sales!" levels of insane), I strongly hope they don't go this route.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by BasilOregano View Post
                        Reservations are fine, maybe even good. Virtual queues sound terrible and could potentially strongly impact the experience (and the philosophy that people will spend more time buying souvenirs or eating meal after meal if they don't have to wait in ride lines is DCA 1.0, "if there are no rides and only shops then imagine the merchandise sales!" levels of insane), I strongly hope they don't go this route.
                        One would think that the executives would have learned from the late 2000s to mid 2010s debacle that was Disney’s Hollywood Studios park. With its lackluster number of attractions and tired shows with zero updates it became a few hours in the morning park or a go to Fantasmic in the evening park and little more. There were even years where both the Universal Parks separately were coming very very close to topping Hollywood Studios in attendance, I think there was even a year where one of the Universal Parks actually did beat out the sad Disney park but I may be mistaken.

                        Different to Disneyland and it’s plethora of attractions, but it illustrates that guests go to parks FOR the attractions, be they shows, rides, events, or entertainment. The Disney as a shopping mall experience has tried and failed quite a few times already throughout Disney history, what’s the definition of insanity again?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I haven't visited the parks since right after the Pier went down for the Pixar retheme (I think Ariel's Grotto closed a week before my last trip). At that time I already wasn't planning on visiting until after Avengers Campus opened because I expected the Star Wars crowd to be unbearable. But, as an out of town visitor I'm always going for 5-day trips to get the most value out of my trip, and I'm more than happy to tell them ahead of time which days I intend to visit. That said, I already can't stand a trip to WDW because the pre-reserved Fast Passes are the WORST thing ever. Also, I have zero desire to play the virtual queue lottery. I'd rather just get a fastpass and move on with my day, especially because with FP, you know before you select it what the return window is, so if you have a dining reservation (I usually have 1-2 per day) you can hold off on getting the FP if that window will come up too close to your dining reservation. From what I've seen, and please correct me if I'm wrong, you can't see what the return time will be for the virtual queue before you select the attraction so then I'd be gambling getting it at all, and that it won't interfere with my dining reservations.
                          Trips coming up:

                          May 22-26th
                          July 13th-18th
                          November 19th-25th

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Disneyland was conceived to help unlock the inner child and youthful spirit of a public in need of retreat from the hurried, overthought adult world. The inner child needs spontaneity to run wild and find joy. Overplanning each moment in advance comes from the business world of intellectualized theory and disconnection. White there is some practicality in concept, in practice, its it's all very controlled, retentive, and "George Banks" - For decades Disney provided us the alternative: a free-spirited "Mary Poppins" experience to sever the bonds, soothe the soul and awaken the spirit. Without that, what is the mission statement?

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I think Disney is having to respond to where not only has the population of California tripled since 1955 when the park was launched but also back then it was a treat that was saved up for and savoured by the whole family. Now with way more people the majority has way more disposable income to spend on things like Disney so there are more people continually wanting to take up the limited spaces. To try and deal with this they have to either:
                              1- add more capacity - already done with DCA and SWGE
                              2- limit people entering by raising costs
                              3- limit people by some other means.
                              They have already tried with the park entry costs and the parks are still full. They have a golden opportunity to take advantage of removing all the annual passes to see how many people will come at full cost. If they use the proposed reward program to make it cheaper if you book further out it would encourage planning but not limit those who want to go on a whim.

                              As far as the Virtual Queues it will be interesting what happens with the lack of annual passes. I would not expect that there would be much appetite for paying full price to enter and wait 4-5 hours in line for a single ride. It almost is going to an electronic version of the old ticket books. You get so many E-ticket rides with the Virtual Queue and then whatever you are willing to wait in line for.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by Flarson View Post
                                I think Disney is having to respond to where not only has the population of California tripled since 1955 when the park was launched but also back then it was a treat that was saved up for and savoured by the whole family. Now with way more people the majority has way more disposable income to spend on things like Disney so there are more people continually wanting to take up the limited spaces. To try and deal with this they have to either:
                                1- add more capacity - already done with DCA and SWGE
                                2- limit people entering by raising costs
                                3- limit people by some other means....
                                I think Disney's actions (as opposed to their words) have made it clear that they opt for:

                                4- pack as many customers into the park as possible at the highest per-visit ticket prices possible.

                                Deliberately reducing the number of cash customers on their property is something we customers want. It is not something Disney wants -- any more than it is a desirable goal of shopping malls, auto dealerships, sports stadiums, music concerts, theaters, and every other business that relies on paid attendance.

                                Fewer people on Disney's property means less profit for Disney. The fact that it means a lower quality experience for the customers is irrelevant to the goal of maximizing profit -- the customers have proved they will return in ever-increasing numbers no matter how packed the parks, how high the price, and how much they complain about either.
                                Last edited by Mr Wiggins; 05-26-2021, 08:51 AM.
                                "Disneyland is often called a magic kingdom because
                                it combines fantasy and history, adventure and learning,
                                together with every variety of recreation and fun,
                                designed to appeal to everyone."

                                - Walt Disney

                                "Disneyland is all about turning movies into rides."
                                - Michael Eisner

                                "It's very symbiotic."
                                - Bob Chapek

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by Flarson View Post
                                  I think Disney is having to respond to where not only has the population of California tripled since 1955 when the park was launched but also back then it was a treat that was saved up for and savoured by the whole family. Now with way more people the majority has way more disposable income to spend on things like Disney so there are more people continually wanting to take up the limited spaces. To try and deal with this they have to either:
                                  1- add more capacity - already done with DCA and SWGE
                                  2- limit people entering by raising costs
                                  3- limit people by some other means.
                                  They have already tried with the park entry costs and the parks are still full. They have a golden opportunity to take advantage of removing all the annual passes to see how many people will come at full cost. If they use the proposed reward program to make it cheaper if you book further out it would encourage planning but not limit those who want to go on a whim.
                                  I think a lot of the current problems stem from not doing a great job at this, tbh. DCA and SWGE are both built on the "minimal entertainment, maximal mall" principle (i.e. the small number of rides they think they can get away with and then an enormous number of restaurants and shops) and therefore not very good at absorbing the crowds; if these locations were built with the same density of attractions as DLR proper then I imagine the crowding issue would be significantly reduced.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by BasilOregano View Post
                                    DCA and SWGE are both built on the "minimal entertainment, maximal mall" principle (i.e. the small number of rides they think they can get away with and then an enormous number of restaurants and shops) and therefore not very good at absorbing the crowds; if these locations were built with the same density of attractions as DLR proper then I imagine the crowding issue would be significantly reduced.
                                    Restoring PeopleMover, Rocket Jets, Skyway, Motor Boat Cruise (Frozen?), and Adventure Thru Inner Space would help capacity --

                                    -- while moving Star Tours to Galaxy's Edge.

                                    And add TRON.

                                    Plus Beauty and the Beast (in Fantasyland Theatre space).

                                    And The Country Bear Jamboree (between Critter Country and SWGE).

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Originally posted by merlinjones View Post

                                      Restoring PeopleMover, Rocket Jets, Skyway, Motor Boat Cruise (Frozen?), and Adventure Thru Inner Space would help capacity --

                                      -- while moving Star Tours to Galaxy's Edge.

                                      And add TRON.

                                      Plus Beauty and the Beast (in Fantasyland Theatre space).

                                      And The Country Bear Jamboree (between Critter Country and SWGE).
                                      Yes, exactly this (although I would obviously quibble with a few of the specifics!).

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by BasilOregano View Post

                                        I think a lot of the current problems stem from not doing a great job at this, tbh. DCA and SWGE are both built on the "minimal entertainment, maximal mall" principle (i.e. the small number of rides they think they can get away with and then an enormous number of restaurants and shops) and therefore not very good at absorbing the crowds; if these locations were built with the same density of attractions as DLR proper then I imagine the crowding issue would be significantly reduced.
                                        Agree - an additional ride and show would have been much better in SWGE. Added issue is that if they do a great job with a ride and it adds too much pressure to the park as everyone wants to be the first to ride it, first to add a review, etc and Disney does not want people coming from out of state/out of country and not able to go on a ride because they see a 4-6 hour wait line for it. Went to Tokyo Disney and Toy Story Mania had just opened and people were waiting for 4 hours calmly and quietly sitting on mats and talking amongst each other. I doubt that would be accepted much here.

                                        Comment

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