Disney Parks focuses overseas, on seas, and on ceasing

Over the next decade, Mickey and Co. will invest $60B into its theme parks, cruise lines, and resorts.

Somewhere out there, a miserable parent is explaining why visiting the just-opened World of Frozen at Hong Kong Disneyland isn’t possible as tears and snot amass on their kid’s Olaf the snowman T-shirt.

A global map with the location of each of Disney’s six theme parks identified alongside an illustration of a prominent landmark from that park and a price tag showing the admission fees required to enter the park this previous weekend.

That heartbreaking scene means all’s going according to plans for Disney — the IRL Frozen extension is the leading edge of the Mouse House’s upcoming $60B investment in expanding its parks and experiences.

Over the next decade, Disney will be “turbocharging” its theme parks, cruise lines, and resorts. And it’s hard to argue with the idea — Disney’s Experiences division expects to hit $10B in profit this year, against $2.2B just a decade prior.

Where’s the money going?

As Disney doubles down, its international properties could get extra attention.

  • Landlocked in California and gridlocked in Florida, domestic expansion may prove difficult.
  • The international parks are hotter properties right now — higher attendance and higher ticket prices drove overseas income up 100%+ over the last year.

The momentum’s already there, anyway. Before the $60B plan was even announced, many international attractions were in the works, per The Hollywood Reporter:

  • Shanghai’s Zootopia-themed area could open in December.
  • Frozen lands are underway in both Tokyo and Paris.
  • Disney Cruise Lines is building its first seaport in Singapore and readying its second Bahamian port.

All of this, plus its just-launched cruise lines in Australia and New Zealand, was accomplished with the last decade’s $30B investment; just imagine what’ll follow with 2x the cash infusion.

It’s not all dreams coming true, though

Disney World’s recent crackdown on third-party tour guides has drawn criticism, per Insider.

While well within Disney’s rights, the sudden policy change is putting Orlando tour operators — some of whom have run their tours without incident for decades, and plenty of whom make the park accessible for disabled visitors — out of business.

Surely some of that $60B could help build a small business-friendly solution here?

… Ah, who are we kidding? That money’s going toward selling more $600 Vera Wang-designed bridal Minnie Ears.

Topics: Disney

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