Posts tagged with "Orlando"

Walt Disney World ‘enthusiasts’ say theme park has ‘lost its magic’

September 20, 2022

A majority of “self-described Disney World enthusiasts” say the Florida theme park has “lost its magic” due to skyrocketing costs, according to findings of a recent study, reports Fox Business.

A study from gambling website Time2play surveyed 1,927 “Disney World enthusiasts”—and, of those, 68.3% reported that the price hikes make them feel like the theme park has “lost its magic.” A whopping 92.6% reported that they believe the high costs for the park has made a vacation for the average family “out of reach.”

A ticket for Disney World’s Magic Kingdom in 1971 was a total of $3.50, according to the study. When adjusting for inflation, that would mean tickets would be about $25.60 today. Instead, tickets for one Disney World park range from $109 to $159 per day, according to the findings.

Nearly 50% of respondents reported postponing a trip due to the price hikes.

All in, Disney World veterans can expect to pay 35.7% more for their next trip compared to their last one, Time2play established.

A chart posted to social media last year by a researcher at SJ Data Visualizations, a U.K.-based firm, shows that prices for Disney World have risen by at least 3,871% since 1971—with prices rising at a more drastic rate in the early 1980s compared to its first decade.

Families spoke out about the prices earlier this year, as traveling picked back up following coronavirus lockdowns, and they expressed shock at the price hikes. One dad of two estimated he would be on the hook for a $4,000 to $5,000 bill, even with one of his kids qualifying for free admission.

“I understand inflation and all of those things. I understand cost increases,” Kentucky father Matt Day told The Washington Post earlier this year on the high prices. “I always had the impression that Disney was a family vacation destination, and that impression is why I was surprised to see how expensive it truly was—and how out of reach it is for most American families.”

“It’s really unprecedented,” said Len Testa, president of theme-park trip-planning site Touring Plans told the Post earlier this year. “We haven’t seen this sort of anger about price hikes in—we can’t remember the last time something like this caused this much anger from Disney fans.”

Walt Disney World’s communications team did not immediately respond to Fox’s request for comment on the study.

Research contact: @FoxBusiness

Shake Shack expands into drive-thru industry

December 9, 2021

In 2022, Shake Shack plans to open 45 to 50 new restaurants, including up to ten drive-thru locations, the popular fast-casual burger chain has announced. But already, the company’s first drive-thru location has officially opened for business in Maple Grove, Minnesota, Fox Business reports.

The new location—part of the Shoppes at Arbor Lakes and open daily from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.—features a split-kitchen design; with a separate kitchen dedicated to drive-thru orders, an outdoor digital menu board, a two-lane ordering system, and a separate pick-up window.

In addition to ordering directly in Shack and at drive-thru lanes, guests will have the option of placing orders ahead of time for pickup via the Shack app and online at order.shakeshack.com. The Maple Grove Shack will offer contactless payment at order point for ease of convenience.
Since the original Shack opened in 2004 in NYC’s Madison Square Park, the company has expanded to more than 350 locations in 32 U.S. states and the District of Columbia.

“Our Maple Grove opening is a huge step forward for our brand. We’ve been envisioning drive-thru for some time now and have been working diligently to make the experience uniquely Shake Shack. We’re bringing our guests an even greater quality, craft, care and experience while adding a new level of convenience,” Shake Shack CEO Randy Garutti said in a statement. “We’ll be learning a lot from this location and will continue to optimize and adapt as we roll out more of these formats next year.”

More than half of the planned new locations will open in suburban markets; and will primarily be freestanding and shopping center locations, with enhanced convenience options such as drive-thru and drive-up. Among the suburban locations will be those near Kansas City, Orlando, and Detroit.

Research contact: @FoxBusiness

Universal to build new 750-acre theme park in Orlando, hire 14K workers in central Florida

August 5, 2019

Universal Orlando Resort is building a new 750-acre theme park down the road a few mile from its current attractions, to be called Universal’s Epic Universe, parent company Comcast has announced.

The new theme park will feature an entertainment center, hotels, shops, restaurants, and more. It will nearly double Universal’s total available acreage in Central Florida, Comcast says.

The news breaks just as Universal’s main competition in the area, Disney, is about to open its second Star Wars theme park in Orlando.

According to a statement from Universal, the Epic Universe “will take guests on a journey where beloved stories expand into vibrant lands—and where that journey is as much a part of their adventure as the ultimate destination.”

“Our new park represents the single-largest investment Comcast NBCUniversal has made in its theme park business and in Florida overall,” said CEO Brian Roberts .

Universal Orlando currently employees 25,000 people and will hire an additional 14,000 team members as part of Epic Universe, including professional, technical, culinary, and other specialized positions.  The company currently contributes more than $302 million in annual state and local taxes—a number that will nearly double when the new theme park opens.

The majority of the businesses Universal relies on are either regional firms or national firms with a large regional presence.  An economic impact study for Universal conducted by University of Central Florida Economic Forecasting Professor Sean Snaith found that Universal Orlando’s combined direct and indirect economic benefit to the Florida economy since Universal Studios opened in 1990 is $73 billion.  He also found that construction of the new park, alone, will contribute a total of $11.5 billion in direct and indirect economic benefit into the Florida economy.

According to a report by NBC News, in the last decade, Universal has expanded its two parks to include “Harry Potter”-themed lands Diagon Alley and Hogsmeade. Analysts are speculating that new rides could be based on Universal properties such as Minions, classic monsters, and even Nintendo.

Research contact: @comcast