PHOTO: New Design Unveiled for Characters in Flight

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The new look balloon for Characters in Flight was inflated today at Disney Springs.

The new design features no characters, a request made by Disney in keeping the new story of Disney Springs cohesive.

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About the author

Tom Corless

Tom has been regularly visiting the Walt Disney World® Resort from the time he was 4 months old. While he has made countless visits in the last 28 years, he did not become a truly active member in the Disney fan community until the summer of 2007, when he decided to launch the WDW News Today website and podcast. Tom has since become an Orlando-local and is a published author on Walt Disney World.
Contact Tom at [email protected]


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  • I get they are trying to keep a cohesive theme but its called “Characters in Flight”. They should change the name of the attraction also.

    • I read it the same way… But I’m guessing (hoping) what was meant is that there are no characters on the balloon design, but they still are part of the attraction. Maybe not though…

    • Name change IS very possible. The balloon is wanted as advertising point of interest from I-4, since most of Disney Springs isn’t visible from highway. It’s not up to Disney, but the business (contracted as “Operating Participants”) who are in Disney Springs. Some name with “Springs” in it is likely.

  • Inside scoop, this was NOT Disney who demanded characters be removed. Disney Springs is not run by Disney, and companies pay dearly to be in that space, just like they would another commercial space. They forced Disney’s hand through attorneys, they’re trying to keep Disney Springs from becoming lower tier as Disney’s theme parks have. Trying to keep it more upscale. Who would have thought Disney Springs would be aiming for higher class than Disney’s own theme parks! Shows how far off the curve WDW team leaders got. Either way, the balloon is just a way for the area to be well seen by I-4, not so much an ‘attraction’

    • What is your source that Disney Springs is not run by Disney? Just curious. Are you saying a management company like JLL or Cushman & Wakefield run it?

      • Unfortunately I’m posting anonymously, but this information can be found publicly as well if you dig online, and some information filed with Orange County. No, it’s not one management company as you mention. Disney contracted out the space to operating participants. Similar to the plan they did for a few of the country pavilions in Epcot, but in Springs Disney has less control, which they had to give up to get people to come. In fact, some of the Springs operators also have restaurants in Epcot (Morocco and Mexico to be specific). Disney maintains oversight, however, the operating participants in concert have the majority of the voice and control. They are all trying to exceed Disney’s minimum standards (which aren’t as high any more) to be higher scale than the theme parks have gone. If they want something, they are likely to get it. This balloon was one of the examples. Seems small. But a huge step for the participants at Disney Springs to say our way or highway. As a customer, you will win by this arrangement. Disney wouldn’t be so kind to you as the participants will be in their quality of product.

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