Disney exec addresses theme park's lack of summer crowds: 'You shouldn’t have 10-hour lines'

Disneyland unveils Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge

The immersive new theme park experience spans 14 acres and transports visitors to the wild edge of space.

A Disney executive believes that guests enjoy theme parks better when they don’t spend all day waiting in line.

The chairman of parks, experiences and products for Walt Disney Company, Bob Chapek, recently spoke about the crowds and experience at Disney parks. He defended the opening of Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge at Disneyland in California, claiming that he saw the supposed lack of long lines as a win.

“So 10-hour lines are not a sign of success. It should be seen as a sign of, frankly, failure.”

Chapek claimed that the lack of long waits for rides was actually a win for Disneyland and its newest addition.
(Amy Sussman/Getty Images)

“The deep secret is that we don’t intend to have lines,” Chapek told CNBC. “If you build in enough capacity, the rides don’t go down and it operates at 99 percent efficiency, you shouldn’t have 10-hour lines.”

Chapek appears to be referencing reports of the wait time for Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure at Universal Studios’ Islands of Adventure in Orlando, Fla., which hit more than 10 hours when it first opened.


“One of the wins that we had with the opening of the original Galaxy’s Edge is that we didn’t have the waits,” Chapek explained.

“So 10-hour lines are not a sign of success. It should be seen as a sign of, frankly, failure.”


In early August, it was reported that Disney CEO Bob Iger commented on the drop in park attendance and the impact of Galaxy’s Edge during an earnings call. Based on his comments, it appears several factors played a role in fewer people visiting the park than expected. (Attendance was reportedly down 3 percent at the company’s domestic parks.)

Iger claimed, “Some people stayed away just because they expected that it would not be a great guest experience.” Another factor, he theorized, was the increase in cost associated with visiting Disneyland.

Fox News' Alexandra Deabler contributed to this report.

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