Disney’s French Revolution, and What It Might Mean for a Theme Park Near You

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Zut alors!

Inflation might be a relatively recent concern in America, but the cost of taking the kids to the Happiest Place on Earth has been rising at a predictably rapid clip since Disney World opened its doors in 1971. The daily admission then of $3.50 for the Magic Kingdom seems positively quaint compared to the $1,716.76 that three days at the resort would cost now for a family of four with a park-hopper ticket, before flights, food and hotel.

Now Disneyland Paris, in what some fear is a preview of policy in the U.S., is planning on selling “Premier Access” to allow some guests to cut the long lines for top rides. In a bit of generosity, children under three don’t need premier access but must be accompanied by an adult who has shelled out the €8 to €15 per ride. So don’t try sending your toddler on Big Thunder Mountain by themselves!

Back at home, Disney has suspended its FastPass system for reserving ride slots free of charge due to the pandemic. Once restrictions fade, will the park operator bring it back with an additional revenue-generating French twist? If so, Disney’s haves and have-nots may soon be divided into two classes: the fast and the furious.

Write to Spencer Jakab at spencer.jakab@wsj.com

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