Thursday, February 17, 2011
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Disney theme parks are enormously successful in the United States. Families flock there at all times of the year. Disney’s best customers are repeat customers. When Tokyo Disneyland opened in 1983, it was more popular than Disney ever imagined. With one foot in to the international area, Disney decided to conquer Europe. They scouted out possible locations and decided on an area outside of Paris, France. The deciding…show more content… Could this have been prevented? In examining the major downfalls of the park, it seems that Euro Disney could have benefited from better research. Tokyo Disneyland found enormous success in Japan. The park in Tokyo has very little differences from the American Magic Kingdoms. Tokyo’s success with like change from the American parks might have led Disney executives to the misguided belief that cultural differences would not affect the success of Euro Disney. But Tokyo and Paris have some pretty critical differences. Tokyo not only has a higher concentrated population surrounding the park but the average income is higher. Probably the biggest difference is that Japan, as a country, tends to embrace American culture much more readily than the French. The cold winters on Paris were identified as a potential problem but when asked in a meeting if Europeans would be willing to stand in the cold a Disney executive simply stated, “The Japanese do.” Japanese and Paris winters vary greatly. Paris has 3 times as many rainy days. And the average highs during winter are 5 degrees warmer in Tokyo than in Paris. When opening a vacation destination it seems obvious to understand the vacation habits of the target audience. This is by far the biggest oversight of Euro Disney. A simple survey could have clued Disney executives in and possibly have changed their minds about ever entering Europe.