Disney Cast Member with Popcorn

Things are not looking great for Disney parks right now. Though Walt Disney World is open, attendance is a fraction of what it is normally due to both capacity limits and lack of travel, and Disneyland Resort has not been operating for almost a year now. However, even though many experts have said that a return to normalcy will happen slowly over time, a recent report in the OC Register has predicted the opposite, with demand for theme parks accelerating sharply in the months ahead and a full recovery predicted by as soon as next year. 

The report cited UBS financial analyst John Hodulik as saying that Disneyland and other Disney theme parks around the world will reach historical attendance levels by 2022 due to pent-up demand for travel and entertainment. In addition, with cuts still in place from 2020, the report also predicts that profit margins will be higher as well, accelerating recovery efforts for Disney and other theme park companies. 

A key component of this quick recovery will be accelerated vaccination distribution in the U.S. which will allow Disney’s domestic theme parks to safely increase attendance caps to 70% later this year, according to the report. 

Image: Jett Farrell-Vega

Though things are still difficult in the short term, it is encouraging to see this prediction about a swift return to normal and better times ahead. Do you think pent-up demand for theme parks will help facilitate a quick recovery for Disney and other theme park operators? 


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