When will Disney World return to normal? That’s the question we have all been asking ourselves. Disney CEO Bob Chapek answered that question in a recent interview! Read all he had to say below.
CEO Bob Chapek
Bob Chapek replaced Bob Iger as the CEO of The Walt Disney Company back in February 2020. Before that, he served as the Chairman of Disney Parks. He has seen the company through an entire year and a pandemic. While some argue that he is not the right choice for CEO, some believe he is just the man for the job.
Yesterday, March 1, Chapek participated in a Q&A-style interview at the Morgan Stanley Technology, Media and Telecommunications Conference. He shared it all from Disney’s plan to continue direct-to-consumer products and the Guest experience at Disney Parks. The pandemic has greatly affected the Guest experience at parks around the world. Two parks remain closed while the others have established several health and safety protocols.
Guest Experience at Disney Parks
He started off that portion of the interview by saying he was excited at how Guests have responded to the health and safety protocols Disney has in place. He believes this increases people’s confidence in Disney as a whole and will benefit the company greatly when COVID-19 settles down.
Speaking of COVID-19, Chapek said that the recovery of the theme park rests on the speed of the vaccine distribution and people’s readiness to travel. We know that with capacity and crowd levels increasing, people are becoming more comfortable with the idea of traveling again.
Next, he stated that the reopening of Disney Parks gave the company the opportunity to make some operational changes. He specifically mentioned the cancelation of Disneyland Annual Passes. There are several other changes I can think of that Guests have been less than pleased with, like the suspension of FastPasses, dining plans, and Magical Express (beginning in 2022).
Finally, the interview moved on to technology. Chapek believes technology helps with immersive storytelling and used Galaxy’s Edge as an example. Additionally, mobile food orders, keyless room entry, and contactless park entry will become more widespread in the future.
He concluded this portion of the interview discussing the costs associated with the reopening of the theme parks, but the company was thrilled to have these costs as it meant Cast Members could return to work.
What else did Chapek discuss in the interview?
The guest experience at the parks is not the only thing Chapek talked about. He shared information about the success of Disney+. He noted that almost 50% of subscriptions come from households that do not have children, which speaks to how popular the streaming service is.
He also discussed Marvel and Star Wars, noting that those projects are so much more than just superheroes but have fantastic storylines thanks to the leaders in charge of those projects.
You can catch the entire interview on The Walt Disney Company website.
What do you think of this interview? Do you think the parks will return to normal when everyone is vaccinated? Or, do you think other things must happen as well before Disney eases the current protocols in place? Share your thoughts with us on Facebook.