ZOMBIE THREAD ALERT: This thread hasn't been posted on for a while.

What has happened to Disneyland Paris?

(28 Posts)
samantha001 Sat 30-Aug-14 17:38:47

Having been a regular visitor to Disneyland Paris with DS's over the past 20 years, I was really disappointed with what I found last week when I visited and wanted to find out if anyone else had the same experience and felt the same? In both parks many of the rides were not working completely or broke down during our stay, some parts of the main park were deserted as shows are no longer running, restaurants were also shut. The lack of maintenance has left the parks looking shabby and small elements of the rides, water showering you on one of the Big Thunder drops or the door on Space Mountain opening and shutting, no longer work. I also found many of the toilets had no hand soap and are not kept clean during the day, this is not very Disney!

strawberrydaquari Sat 30-Aug-14 17:56:14

Following, sorry I can't comment. Went a few years ago and was hoping to return next year so watching with interest

WandaWitch Sat 30-Aug-14 18:21:12

Am watching with interest too, we noticed the same the last time we went (2 years ago), had been twice before that previous two years and it was absolutely immaculate but last time there was green water in the pools around rides, peeling paint, moss growing on roofs of rides etc. I know it's wet in France and they are battling against our climate rather than the heat of Florida but as you say it just wasn't very Disney and they need to deal with the issue that stuff does go green/grow moss in the rain and clean it, it was more like a cheap theme park at Southend - it put us off it and haven't been back since, not worth travelling all the way there when can go to a local one, wheras before we went there because it was a theme park done really well. Clean and well looked after is crucial to us for us to be happy to pay those sorts of costs and what I'd expect from Disney - not shabby and a bit run down.....

pashmina696 Tue 09-Sep-14 18:46:56

agreed - I think a large part of discovery land is being re-done though i didnt see much work happening - i was a bit disappointed in some things when we were there last month - cobwebs all over its a small world and dirty water (with ducks in!) - it was not as immaculate as Disney World in Florida where there is zero chipped paint! Also the boat ride in fantasyland had so many boats out of service and kept stopping.

I also felt around 90% of the staff needed to revisit disney customer service training....

stealthsquiggle Tue 09-Sep-14 18:53:39

Ooh. Interesting. Another interested watcher. I was contemplating talking DH into a DLP trip at Christmas to make up for rubbish holiday-less summer, but if it's all tatty and grubby then that would depress me still further. As you say, if you want tatty and grubby then there are plenty of options closer to home.

WeAreGroot Tue 09-Sep-14 19:05:09

Small World is closing at the end of this month for maintenance.

La Pays des Contes de Fées is also closing for maintenance in October.

I went last year and to be honest wasn't conscious of it being shabby or run down. It was my first trip though so I don't know if that coloured my opinion somewhat. The hotel we stayed in (Newport Bay) was a little tired but very clean and it's currently undergoing a massive refurb. The staff were all lovely and helpful, they were flogging themselves to death keeping paths clear as it was very cold and icy.

I had a fabulous time and I'm currently climbing the walls with excitement as we're having another trip out there next month during the Halloween celebrations grin

PurpleAlert Tue 09-Sep-14 19:08:44

Oh nooooooo! Don't say that! Am going there this weekend!

We went in May and it was fantastic. Clean and tidy. Great staff. 4 rides were not working (planned maintenance). Food was lovely and not too expensive. We stayed at Hotel Cheyenne and I was really impressed. We were there for 4 nights/5days. I can't wait to go back.

frignorant Tue 09-Sep-14 20:06:05

We went in August. Having been to both Florida and Paris, we have always thought Paris as the poor relation. I don't recall any rides being out of service but I was really suprised at the messy state of the toilets. The park isn't as well kept as Florida but I wouldn't regard it as being shabby. The staff aren't as friendly but then no one does customer service like the Americans. There did appear to be a number of people selling stuff from suitcases directly outside the parks, which we found to be a bit unDisney.

As we left the Paris park, around 9.30pm, there were armed guards walking around the paths leading to the car parks (holding thier guns). No idea if this is a regular occurrence or a one off incident but it un-nerved us somewhat.

frignorant Tue 09-Sep-14 20:07:37

Forgot to say, despite all that, we had a fab time but wouldn't rush to go back.

clam Tue 09-Sep-14 20:28:56

We went a few weeks ago. Last went in 2002 and then to the Florida parks in 2003. Was not impressed at all with Paris this time, even allowing for the fact that I was no longer looking at it through the eyes of my children (now mid-late teens and only interested in the 'big' rides). Rides poorly-maintained, customer service not good at all, and every loo I visited stank. The 'restaurant' in the Studio park was like a scene from hell at lunch time.

We had an enjoyable day, but I can safely say I will never go back.

I went in May and it was OK. We did see a few rats running around in the daylight which was shock

pashmina696 Tue 09-Sep-14 21:21:01

I wouldn't regard it as shabby at all - interested the two rides in the park i felt were needing attention are getting some - we had a lovely time, and compared to Florida the pirates of the caribbean, space mountain and peter pan were better rides in Paris - the whole pirate/skull rock area is fantastic.

Appreciate you cannot get American service outside the US but I do think Disney has an expected service standard that wasn't met by a lot of the DLP staff, which disappointed me.

Quokka12 Tue 09-Sep-14 21:29:20

We went last week wed-Friday with a 4 year old and staying at the New York hotel. We went to Florida last year. We thought the layout was fantastic and the rides were v good. Downside service is not disney, meeting characters is like the holy grail to meet a princess (we did -but an hour to queue for reservation and then to queue to meet for one princess did not match the us) and the food is awful. We had an absolutely brilliant time and the ease of the Eurostar was great - not one we regret but wouldn't do again. For rides Drayton park et al are better and without the character add not worth the mark up.

Everyone says the food is awful! I thought it was great. The breakfast was manic but ok. We ate at Annette's Diner, Rainforest Cafe and we had the buffet in Disneyland Hotel. It was fantastic!

Maybe I'm just easily pleased smile

SixerofthePixies Wed 10-Sep-14 12:01:58

Have been three times in the last ten years and the food was shocking everywhere and hideously overpriced. The worst offenders for me have been mickeys cafe and rainforest cafe (had bad meals twice in both). I always think the problem is it doesn't really have that Disney feel that Florida does.

It is also getting harder to find characters each time we go. They used o have loads available or meet and greets or just wandering. Last time we went there were very few.

To be honest we only went to dlp as we felt the kids were too young for the flights/heat etc. now they are older we will go to Florida (been there 3 times Pre dc) . dLp is very much the poor relation.

NameChangerNewDanger Wed 10-Sep-14 12:05:33

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

katrina81 Wed 10-Sep-14 13:16:13

I was considering booking DLP for half term October week, but not too sure now. We have never been before.

Not sure what to do really as it is quite expensive.

I looked at booking or easter next year and with travel its almost as expensive as going to Orlando. We decided to go to Orlando over easter instead and are sharing accomadation costs by going with friends (we have an agreement that we don't need to stick together and can if we want or be free to have individual holidays just sharing a large villa) this will be the second time I have driven over there and not looking forward to that part.

I priced 3 nights in a good hotel, (new York I think) with Eurostar at over £3000 that wasn't including food or spending money and supposedly my youngest going free. £3800 has brought us 10 night in a 6 bedroom villa in kissimee, with large pool, hot tub and car hire. (no hidden extras on the car hire)

clam Wed 10-Sep-14 20:20:00

We saw one character, Goofy. That was it. And there was a massive long queue for him.
To be fair, we weren't there for that, so weren't on the look out for them, plus we headed over to the studio park for a late lunch, staying there until early evening, so that might have been the time they all came out to play. We didn't see the parade either (4 teens, not interested)

LadyWithLapdog Wed 10-Sep-14 20:26:00

We went last year at the end of August. Lots if rides were closed, mediocre overpriced food and a few grumpy workers. The kids enjoyed it.

It depends on your expectations.

It is definitely showing its age, and rides can often be closed for maintenance.

It is nowhere near as good as the US versions, but then it's easier to get to and much cheaper.

Food in the parks is so-so, but I have yet to find a theme park with good food. We've found that if time allows, pop on the train one stop to the Val d'Europe centre where there are lots of much nicer eateries. Also a huge Auchan supermarket.

Closer to hand - the filled roll place in the station is a reasonable option - last year they were doing a roll plus drink and a tart for 8 euro. The service station beside Santa Fe is another good source of cheaper food (and alcohol, but not after 6pm)

It's in France - the weather and service levels are what you'd expect.

BUT I've just booked for a trip in December (Downs stepson is a huge fan, and is very excited). I've been there 4 times so far, this will be my 5th visit.

There is a very good and up to date forum for DLP on Trip Advisor, which is highly recommended for any prospective guests.

Coffeeinapapercup Thu 11-Sep-14 20:47:28

Disneyland Paris is open 364 Days of the Year. Sometimes rides have to close for maintenance.

Have been regularly since it opened, in recent years about every 12-18 months, off peak and on for the last 8 years. I haven't noticed any recent detioration. In fact the worse time for maintenance and general shabbiness was many years back when it was EuroDisney and on the brink of bankruptcy. Toilets have never been great but some are consistently better than others.

There is a massive difference in the experience between offpeak and on peak times. Off peak tends to feel a little more shut down but it is much quieter, on peak is the full on Disney experience but it is significantly busier. You pick your time to suit your needs.

In fact some of the problems have significantly improved, like easing the pressure on the fast food restaurants through meal plans (although again your experience is entirely dependent on where you eat), queue jumping and customer service (someone actually "have a good day"-ed me last visit).

I have to say I don't think the food is bad at all. But last time I went for the full board plan so nowadays I don't touch the fast food joints. Even on the fast food level there is a massive difference between for example Toad Hall in Fantasy Land and Colonel Haithis in Adventureland. 5 mins walk apart but your view of the food will vary dramatically depending on which one you walk into.

The florida is cheaper argument is mightly unfair. Comparing staying in a hotel onsite with staying in a villa offsite is not comparing like for like. Im next going in February, had I gone to an equivalent star rating hotel onsite in Orlando with the extra time that the extra attractions would take to do properly would have cost me close to an additional £5000.

Coffeeinapapercup Thu 11-Sep-14 21:03:52

I will add that after EVERY holiday I have received a survey (a couple of times on sight). I've seen things that I have had a moan about in the survey get tackled and improve if not go away entirely. If there is anything you feel DLP are not on top of let them know!

Thing is for me I worked out that the reason I go has nothing to do with the maintenance, the food or the toilets. I go because I don't cook, drive or do some many "Mum" things and I can relax feel a little less responsible and enjoy the experience on the same level of the kids. Same for my DD and DS with special needs. Massively unifying for us as a family especially if what we're going through at home is difficult and challenging.

katrina81 Fri 12-Sep-14 11:47:35

Well I am thinking of definitely booking now, I'm sure the children will enjoy it, if anything.

I have found a good deal for the Santa Fe hotel and might upgrade to evening dining as well.

We will be driving over and already have a voucher for a free crossing. I would love to go to Florida but I just can't afford those prices.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now