Bob Iger admits Disney was ‘too aggressive’ with theme park price hikes


March 10, 2023 | 11:18 a.m.

Disney CEO Bob Iger has admitted the Mouse House went too far with theme park price hikes that angered its customers last year.

One of the first steps Iger took when he returned as Disney CEO last November was to reverse price increases implemented under his predecessor, Bob Chapek.

“I’ve always believed that Disney was a brand that needed to be accessible,” Iger said during an appearance at a Morgan Stanley press conference on Thursday. “And I think in our zeal to increase profits, we may have been a little too aggressive on some of our pricing.”

“I think there’s a way to continue to grow our business, but to be smarter about how we evaluate in order to maintain that brand value of accessibility,” Iger added.

In January, Disney reinstated many affordable perks the company had previously cut, including free self-parking at resort hotels and free photo uploads for its theme park rides.

The entertainment giant has also “significantly” increased the number of days that Disneyland tickets sell for at their lowest price of $104.

Disney World has reinstated free self-parking at its resort hotels.

Iger said the company’s price cuts have “resonated very well with consumers.”

The Disney boss also said the company has taken steps to “improve the guest experience by reducing crowding” at the parks.

“It’s tempting to let more and more people in, but if customer satisfaction levels go down because of the crowds, it doesn’t work,” Iger said. We need to figure out how to reduce clutter while maintaining our profitability. And we did it well.

Disney had vexed customers with higher prices and long lines.
Getty Images

A series of price increases had sparked outrage from Disney park visitors who complained of sticker shock as well as the long queues and poor service they encountered on site.

Last November, The Wall Street Journal reported that Iger had been “alarmed” by price hikes Chapek had ordered while he was CEO.

“He kills the soul of the business,” Iger reportedly told confidants of the price hikes.

Disney’s theme parks remain a major driver of its overall business. In fiscal 2022, the segment generated $28.7 billion in revenue and $7.9 billion in profit, beating its pre-pandemic performance.

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