Disneyland Hong Kong Screws Up Again

The front page of the City section in today’s South China Morning Post is completely taken up with another Disney screw-up. I did an entry on a previous one in September: “Disney Moves West or Is It East?” Because the park was filled to capacity by 11:30 AM, hundreds of people, some from as far away as London and many mainland Chinese, were turned away or told to come back at 3:30 PM yesterday.

It seems that, since January 3, Disneyland is selling tickets good for six months but not guaranteed for any particular day. They closed the gates at 11:30 AM. In typical Hong Kong fashion some people tried to storm the gates and the police had to be called. Refunds were only given to people with dated tickets or those who had special situations, like a Thursday flight out.

Many of these people had planned their whole Hong Kong holiday around a visit to Disneyland. A Disneyland spokesperson offered the lame excuse that people are warned to come early on holidays. So…yesterday was not a holiday and what if 40,000 people had shown up at 9:00 AM. The park’s capacity is 30,000. You are guaranteed entry, only if you are staying at the Disney hotels at the park.

I don’t get it. The Disney people who are dependent on visitors to Hong Kong seem to be unable to foresee the problems that some of their policies will cause. Additionally, the queue for a refund was over an hour long. I thought that Disney had done its homework but it appears they still have much to learn about doing business in Hong Kong.