6 Reasons People Continue to Visit Disney World
Ask anyone, from your close friends and family, the person who bags your items at the grocery store or even the hot dog vendor at the baseball game, if they know anything about the Walt Disney Company and you’re sure to receive an abundance of answers. From the movies, Mickey Mouse, theme parks, resort hotels, characters or the man who started it all; Walt Disney himself, everyone knows something about the corporation.
The creator, ‘Walt’ Disney, was born on December 5, 1901 in Chicago. He started out creating commercials which sparked his attraction to animation. Though his first successful original work, Oswald the Lucky Rabbit, was lost with almost his entire animation team when Walt refused to take a pay decrease for the successful cartoon, Disney soon after created another character that would prove to be even more successful than his original. This was the birth of Mickey Mouse and the beginning of a successful era in Walt’s life. With the creation of short cartoons, a motion picture of the classic tale, Snow White and the Seven Dwarf’s, came into the works. Eventually theme parks on multiple continents, cartoons considered classics today, hotels, water parks, cruises and destination vacation sites came into the picture stamped with the ‘Walt Disney’ logo. This is the image of the Walt Disney Company’s success that the world knows today. Many have tried, and most have failed to mimic the major achievements of the company
Walt Disney World first opened the doors of the Magic Kingdom on October 1, 1971 in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. Disney World houses four theme parks, two water parks, four golf courses, a shopping dining district, two themed mini golf courses and 27 themed hotels throughout the property’s 27,258 acres of land. Though Walt Disney never got to see the opening day of his magical creation before his death, he worked closely with the construction workers as they brought his dream into a reality.
As ticket and hotel prices continue to rise at ‘The Most Magical Place on Earth’, what makes the company stand out and continue to be desired by families across the world? What makes the Magic Kingdom and its sister parks, Epcot, Hollywood Studios and the Animal Kingdom, continue to be a vacation destination for the young and old alike?
6. There is always something new or being updated
The Walt Disney World parks are always installing a new ride or updating an old classic. It is rare that you will step into one of the theme parks without seeing construction in one form or another. Families return every year with the promise that there will always be something new to see when you return to the park.
Currently the newest addition to the Magic Kingdom was the expansion of Fantasyland, which included a ‘mine train’ style ride in the theme of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. This attraction catered to both the young and old alike and continued with Disney’s tradition of family attractions. This new addition increased park attendance to the Magic Kingdom by 6.0% from 2012 to 2013.
The next addition will be in the Animal Kingdom Park and is set to open in 2017. This expansion includes an AVATAR themed land which will allow guest to travel into the land of Pandora. The AVATAR expansion is also expected to increase park admission to the Animal Kingdom just as the Fantasyland expansion brought more guests into the Magic Kingdom.
Walt Disney World has a system known as fast-passes. While other parks require guests to pay extra for this feature, this Fast-Pass System is included in the price of the theme park ticket at Disney World. The fast-pass program allows guests to pre-program times to ride their favorite attractions while they explore the park waiting for their time slot to return. The ride choices can be made days, weeks, or even months before guests enter the park. Guests can also change their attraction choices and times through the MyMagic+ app available for free on smartphones or online at the Walt Disney World official website. Instead of waiting in line, guests have an hour long window to return to the ride and promptly be seated.
4. Magic Bands
With the new technology called the Magic Band, Guests no longer have to keep up with park tickets, photo pass cards, paper fast-passes, credit cards and Walt Disney World Resort hotel keys. When a guest books their hotel room online, they select the number and type of park tickets they would like to purchase. Guests also decide the color of the magic band that they will wear for the duration of their vacation. When the reservations are finalized and purchased, Disney sends the bands directly to your home. Guests bring the bands to the hotel with them and have the option to link the band with a credit card and a pin number. After the activation, guests will virtually only need their Magic band to explore and purchase meals and souvenirs throughout Disney World. This is a great convenience for families, especially those with small children who will already be juggling many things along with them to the parks.
3. Hotels on property and transportation that will pick you up
This is all about convenience. After guests at Walt Disney World Resorts check in to their hotels, they can park their car for the duration of the trip. The Disney shuttle service will take guests anywhere that they need to go on property by bus, monorail or boat. Transportation will escort guests anywhere they need to go until one hour after the latest park closes, which can be as late as 1 o’clock in the morning during the summer months. Instead of fighting traffic and paying to park at the parks, Disney offers this convenient way to travel to all guests. Resort Hotels will also pick up vacationers staying at their hotels and their luggage from the airport, so getting a taxi is not necessary.
Even though a task such as travel is necessary at Disney World, Disney adds their own magic to the process. Transportation buses are named the ‘Magical Express’ and play tunes from the most loved and memorable Disney attractions, movies and television shows. Park tips and tricks are also given through the speakers of the monorails, ferry boats and Magical Express buses. This gives guests a change of pace from normal charter buses and travel provided by other theme parks.
2. The feeling of being young for just one more day
The moment that you step foot inside the Walt Disney parks, people of all ages become a kid again. Parents will skip through Fantasyland just as their children do and you can even catch a glimpse of a father waving to Mickey as if he is anything more than a young adult in a mouse costume. Grandparents wait in line to meet Cinderella and return to the days of their childhood. After all, where else can people of all ages become space rangers, go on a river boat cruise, tour a haunted mansion with 999 happy haunts and meet Tinkerbell all before lunch time? It’s as if the scattered showers of Bay Lake, Florida hold the fountain of youth.
People young and old remember watching classic Disney movies such as Sleeping Beauty, Dumbo, Cinderella, Peter Pan, Winnie the Pooh, and The Jungle Book, just to name a few. Likewise, anyone that has ever been to Disney World as a child remembers meeting characters and spending time with their families as they cheerfully stroll through the parks and ride the classics such as Splash Mountain, It’s a Small World, and the Haunted Mansion. Walking down Main Street holds memories from your first visit and suddenly you remember why you pay the outrageous prices for a ticket, food and all the souvenirs that accompany the trip; you want to relive your childhood and make similar memories that your own children will remember and cherish as they walk through the park with their own children one day.
People from around the world, some with children and some without, continue to flock to Lake Buena Vista, Florida every year to experience the magic from Walt Disney World. They look for new experiences, ease of vacation planning and most of all a chance to forget about the outside world for a few days. These vacationers are willing to pay more for ease of travel and a vacation resort that doesn’t cut corners and focuses on even the smallest details. This is the ‘magic’ that Disney advertises and this is the reason that people continue to return time and time again.
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