Elissa Sanci: The happiest (and most expensive) place on earth

bAs many college students do, I made the pilgrimage to Florida for spring break. Initially, I wanted to go to Disney World for at least one day. In my 22 years of life, I had yet to see Cinderella’s castle, hug Goofy, or wear a pair of mouse ears, so I figured now was just a good a time as any.

After looking at the ticket prices, I was appalled, immediately scratching “visit the happiest place on Earth” from my list. A one-day pass to any of the four Disney theme parks in Orlando, Fla. was an unbelievable $97.

Then I started thinking. Millions of families from all over the world visit Disney World every year, and, at $97 for one day, I wondered how much revenue Disney World makes per day.

I found a website that continuously updates the amount of money each individual Disney Park makes. After spending just 30 seconds on the Magic Kingdom’s page, I watched Disney earn more than $1,900. After 12 minutes on the site, the happiest place on Earth had racked up a little less than $48,000—roughly the same amount as a year of tuition at the University of New Haven.

aAccording to the site, the Magic Kingdom, arguably the most popular of the Disney parks and home to the iconic castle, earns $67.14 per second. Blizzard Beach, a water theme park owned by Disney in Orlando, Fla., makes the least, racking up $6.86 a second—but that’s $411.60 per minute, and that’s more money than I make in two weeks at my minimum wage job.

So is it fair that Disney rakes in millions a day when some people in America struggle for access to clean water? There are Americans living in poverty, children without access to education and single parents struggling to buy toilet paper—but it’s all okay as long fireworks go off every night over Cinderella’s castle.




2 thoughts on “Elissa Sanci: The happiest (and most expensive) place on earth

  1. Disney is a company, they sell a product/experience that people want to pay for, and they have made enough smart decisions over the years to turn into a very successful business, there is nothing unfair about that. They do not force you to buy a ticket to Magic Kingdom or to go see their movies, nor do they steal money from people, they just do what any other business does. Its the bureaucratic bulls*** that goes on in government that is responsible for the events like the Flint water crisis or the lack of quality education, THAT’S unfair. Businesses like Disney or Apple are there to make money, not care for citizens, thats the responsibilities of a government.


    1. I am not the author of the blog post you’re responding to, but I think it’s entirely fair to call out a corporation for high prices. And if you believe Disney has never been unfair, you should really read up on what they did to the Florida environment to build their Magic Kingdom. I find this instructive but the book on which the article is based is probably a better source.


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