Disney CEO Bob Chapek Doubles Down on Park Passes, Says Reservation System is ‘Exceeding Expectations’

In case there was anyone left wondering after CEO Bob Chapek and Parks Chairman Josh D’Amaro have stated that the park pass reservation system is here to stay, Chapek doubled down on his support for the system in today’s Q2 2022 earnings call.

Pointing to the $6.7 billion revenue for the Parks, Experiences and Products division, Chapek credited the system for allowing Disney to plan for spending and revenue on a daily basis. Knowing how many guests will be in attendance each day allows the company to forecast food and beverage sales, staffing needs, and more.

CFO Christine McCarthy also claimed that Disney is still limiting attendance through the reservation system in order to increase “guest enjoyment.” She also cited the return of traditional meet and greets and the Disneyland Resort nighttime spectaculars as returning capacity to the domestic parks.

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  1. Interesting how they want to increase guest enjoyment with the reservation system when most guests say they don’t enjoy the reservation system. Moreover, guest satisfaction in the overall park product seems to be at a low.

    They continue to show why they shouldn’t be running the place.

  2. Exceeding whose expectations?
    Thanks for destroying half of disneys market cap. Blowing away the decline of Dow. Well done. Idiot.

    1. I agree, but what I think they meant that it was a phenomenal success was simple. Through this system, and the joys of algorithms they can predict who will spend the most amount of money on any given day. They have made it so that those people who will spend the most will have access to the park, and those will not spend as much as the others receive a No reservations available. therefore that’s why it’s a huge success. They get to filter out all the people who will not spend as much as others.

      Welcome to corporate financial discrimination!

  3. I won’t be bringing my family back. The reservation system is horrible. You have to be quick and basically get lucky to get a reservation that you want. You are only allowed to make a few reservations, and you have to be on the app right at 7am to try and get those spots. And if your not fast enough you’re out of luck for that day. Sure they are making money right now because everyone is giving giving a try, but give it a bit and no one will be paying all that extra money to have a chance at maybe getting a reservation. Plus you spend all day on the app instead of enjoying the park. It’s just plain stupid.

  4. You think these people read a single guest survey, article, or message board? I don’t know of 1 single person who thinks Bob has done a single positive thing for the entire brand, especially the parks. The parks are as bad as they’ve ever been, and somehow they see positivity from the reservation system? For who? Management or the customer? It’s a damn good thing they are as established as they are, because tho I know a lot of people who enjoy the parks, not one sees the experience as being anything but a higher priced, less valuable experience. We pay more to receive less. Chapek is shockingly bad at his job.

  5. From at least 7 guests…. I can say it has not increased the fun. It has made it less fun. Disney is just trying to paybthe least amount of employees so that can make their paycheck more. They don’t care how guests have longer lines. The reservation system, I would think would make crowded parks less likely however it seems to be the opposite. That is simply because they pack in the guests and run with bare minimum staff in hopes of guests paying more to get through the long lines faster. Disney is not about the guests experience.

  6. It has nothing to do with “guest enjoyment” and everything to do with limiting staffing. Imagine if your local grocery store required you to make a reservation weeks in advance before you could shop there — in reality they predict how many people they need based on past sales and current trends. Grocery stores still make a profit, despite running with a MUCH slimmer profit margin than the theme parks.

  7. I’m pretty sure the only one getting benifits from the Park Pass Res system is Disney. Bob Cheapex even says in this artic that it allows Disney to increase revenue by allowing them to plan food, and sheduling Cast Members. As for Guests, we’re all still on his far, far view with little concern for Guests. A lot, if not most, of the changes under him and Josh are of greater benifit to Disney Corporate rather then to guests and visitors. I do not begrudge Disney making money, that allows them to continue to keep parks open and develop new movies, rides and all the stuff we love about Disney.

  8. Notice how he mentioned nothing regarding the debacle of liding Reedy Creek district? It’s the 800 lb gorilla in the room.

  9. Something needs to be done in WDW around the reservation system. You can park hop after 2pm and on “most” days, you can go to any park “after” checking in at your first park. How about if you decide to sleep in and take a dip in the pool and then have lunch at your resort instead of going to your reserved park? Unfortunately you cannot virtually check in and then go to another park. This happened recently to us. We were told we needed to literally walk into DAK to go to Epcot at night. We wasted almost an hour and a half of our vacation. We drove to DAK, walked like it seemed forever and checked in through the front gates. We turned around and walked again like forever to our car to drive to Epcot only to park far away to get into the park for our dining reservation. If 2pm is the cut off, then there should be some way to make changes or “virtually” check in to your first park. This being said, we are not planning on going to WDW for quite a long time. I’ve gone since Aug. 1972 and this by far is the worst controlling method set for a vacation.

  10. I still hate the reservation system. The lines and waits are longer, and crowds are worse than before the system was in place. We are going to WDW this weekend (still love Disney, just not on board with reservation system or Genie+)…hopefully we’ll be pleasantly surprised by the supposed increased enjoyment but I’m skeptical.

  11. Look like l can’t buy or upgrade my house ,buy a EV with solar panels on the roof of my home….saving going …….down….crying…..

  12. I don’t like the reservation system. We like the freedom of being able to get up each morning and decide if we want to spend the day in a Park or just relax around Fort Wilderness. The reservation system has taken the spontaneity out of a WDW vacation.

  13. The reservation system is a joke. What they say it helps is not factual. They can’t control how many people go into a park because you can literally walk in and back out to go to another park. Not to mention the fact that they are violating their AP contacts by blacking out days for people with no blackouts.

  14. The reservation for both getting into the park or riding an attraction are about as worse as it can get. Throw in the mix of dining reservations and now you need an algorithm to figure it out. Can the executive team not see this or do they not care?

  15. Went in March for a week, and the new system is terrible. There were 15 of us, and trying to do anything as a family was a logistical nightmare. Not to mention, if you aren’t on the app at 7 a.m. you will not get on a popular ride that day without enduring a very long wait. It is all about profit for Chapek, and he cares little if at all for the guest experience. It seemed that the parks were short staffed, and packed to the gills to ensure people paid extra to “avoid” long lines. My family has been to WDW many times, and until this all changes, probably won’t be back. All of us love Disney, and it was less then magical. I’m not even going to get into how the benefit of staying on site has reduced!!!

  16. Currently part way through the worst Disney trip we’ve ever been on. Sadly, this will be the last of many years of fun at Disney. It’s just not what it used to be.

  17. It’s has nothing to do with reservations. What the problem is allowing hotels and motels to sell you tickets. Stay two nights here. 3 nights here. Get a free pass. Disney needs to be in charge of selling their own tickets and stop letting other people sell their own tickets. That way they’ll know how many they sold for that particular day when they ask. What day are you going. Haven’t been in over 40 years. I wouldn’t go if you paid me to go. I went when most people dreamed of going. It’s not about who’s rich or who’s poor. It’s about sitting your standards on what you want to do with your life. Focusing on a task saving for it and then you go. And besides, it still made out of concrete and asphalt and that hasn’t changed since the day it was created.

  18. He is actually doing a spectacular job for the Corporation and stockholders. They have seen record profits despite the pandemic. With that said, how you treat people and customers (including workers) should no longer be defined by antiquated share prices and record profits. You can still make incredible or even good profits while taking care of employees, vendors, and the customer. But since this is the model under Chapek, only thing that will change to make it a more positive and a little bit more affordable experience for families is that people vote with their feet and wallets and do something else with their vacation dollars. Disney has done amazing marketing for decades to make it seem like you are a crappy parent if you don’t expose your kids to this magical place.

    I have witnessed how this actually hasn’t been the case for decades, but now you have record attendance due to Covid and the Covid relief funds. Which will soon enough evaporate due to inflation and time.

    We enjoy Disney parks and are used to the expense, inconvenience and the hard work it takes to navigate the park with little to no wait. I am going to see how that works in Disneyland – since I haven’t been there since I was a child.

    Finally, just go somewhere else? Tons of wonderful amusement parks including Universal Studios. That has been what we have been doing and avoiding WDW – just too many people mainly the reason.

  19. If Disney is making so much money why is our stock the lowest value in years. They are not passing profits to stockholders. The reservation system is very inconvenient. We are pass holders and wanted to take our grandchildren. We got our park day, but by the time we bought their tickets the day we wanted was gone. We ended up going to one park instead of two. So they lost all the money we would have spent in the park for the extra day.

  20. If you really want a real say in the Disney lane, just buy one share of Disney stock and VOTE. Venting on these forums make us feel good but no one in the Company hears you. They doubled their own pay by canvassing the top 30 percent of stock holders, who, then, said it was a good idea. The board of directors IS the top 30 percent of the stock holders. You won’t know what they’re really doing unless you get the annual report. Which you get with just one share of stock. You also get to vote on directors and initiatives just like the big guys. GET a SAY get a SHARE. ( yes I have stock and I did vote) you can too.

  21. When my AP is over this year, I’m done. Chapel has ruined the experience…the reservation system is just one of many reasons. So sad too as I’ve always been such a Disney fan. Sigh.

  22. It’ll be strange going to Fla and not stepping foot in a Disney park. Magic Kingdom is great, but we’re more of an epcot family. We’ve done magic Kingdom enough to have a pattern to where we go, and when. Epcot we did a lot, too, but something always changed for us each trip. Disney is now about Supply and Demand. They dangle pretty things in front of ppl and they demand multiples of it. In order to get it, they run to make reservations for the parks. Guess what. By the time you get into the park, the items they put in front of you, are gone. But you can probably find it all on ebay for double the price.
    We’re more likely willing to pay more for universal. Lots to do. Each time was different for us.

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