Totally surprised...Disney closing kids' clubs

Discussion in 'Disney Resorts' started by vinotinto, Jan 9, 2018.

  1. Surgie2

    Surgie2 DIS Veteran

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    I certainly understand this. But I also understand parents wanting a couple hours break in a hectic Disney week to regroup. No judgement either way. On another forum a poster actually said parents who would leave their kids at a Disney club shouldn't have had kids in the first place. Oh my. Let's all respect parenting choices. :flower1:
     
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  2. beesly

    beesly DIS Veteran

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    Bummer! My DD had a blast at Lilo’s about two years ago. She was going to go one night over our trip just the other week, but we canceled because she caught a cold and we didn’t want to share it. I did notice low attendance at Simba’s when we stayed at AKL last March. My DD was bored one evening so we went to check it out, but she didn’t stay because there were no other kids there at all.
     
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  4. Shanti

    Shanti Momketeer

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    No, no judgment here, either. Didn't mean it to come off that way. Just putting in my 2 cents that the change has no impact on us.
     
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  5. goofy4tink

    goofy4tink No tags...not needed! Transportation moderator Moderator

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    I've had several people, not here, take me to task for leaving my child at the Neverland Club. Dear heaven...she was 8!!! She had a ball....probably a better time then she had had with us in the parks! Our traveling companions were a bit nervous about leaving their 8 y/o dd there though! My dd texted me yesterday, to tell me of the closings. She was so disappointed to hear it. Yes, she's 24 now, and works at US. But she has very fond memories of the times she spent at Neverland Club! And feels badly for the kids that won't get that chance now.
    I adored spending time with my dd....I'm actually struggling with empty nest at the moment and wish I could go back to those days. But, I would still give her the chance to stay at the club if I could go back in time. As a parent, I realize that my kids need time away from me, and that my dh and I need time away from our kids. We don't always need to be right there, and that sometimes we have to trust others to care for them.
     
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  6. NicoleLarson

    NicoleLarson DIS Veteran

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    Nooooo! My kids absolutely adore all of these places. It's their only request, not the parks or character meals, not BBB or pirates league but please let us go to Lilo's or Simbas. So sad:sad:
     
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  7. NicoleLarson

    NicoleLarson DIS Veteran

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    Very well said!
     
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  8. Mousemommy1

    Mousemommy1 DIS Veteran

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    We have used them in the past and our kids did have fun, but everytime we dropped off, my kids were the only ones there, lol. I always wondered how much they were actually used because of that. That being said, I'm actually not surprised about this.
     
  9. _auroraborealis_

    _auroraborealis_ I like marshmallows. And adult beverages.

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    Kid's Clubs on cruises are included. Kid's Clubs at Disney are an upcharge. That is a key difference.

    You could often book same day, which meant their existing staffing had not hit ratio. Many of the extras are fixed cost to Disney (character staff costs the same regardless of group size). I think demand simply was not consistent enough, and there are other potential uses for the spaces.

    The spot at Poly would not be big enough for another DVC but could make room for a other water area or restaurant.
     
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  10. rchampagne

    rchampagne Mouseketeer

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    I'm a little sad about this. My kids enjoyed the kids club at Poly last year, and it gave my wife and me a chance for date night at Epcot. I think we all benefited from a break from each other for a few hours.
     
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  11. mster425

    mster425 DIS Veteran

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    Kids club at the poly is my strongest memory from my first visit in 1988. We ate spaghetti, got soda, and watched the jungle book. My kids got private visits with chip and dale and have been begging to go back. DH and I got to ride Tower of Terror and RnR TOGETHER. Like a real couple!

    I leave my kids at the kids club at IKEA too so I can eat chocolate cake upstairs by myself. Parenting pro-tip #126.
     
  12. unrequited23

    unrequited23 DIS Veteran

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    I think you are my new hero.
     
  13. PrncessA

    PrncessA Dis_Mom_

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    I was very surprised by this announcement. Our kids loved Lilo's Playhouse when we were there in 2014, and we were possibly going to do it again next month for our anniversary dinner and Trader Sam's. I called just now to make a reservation for February and was told that now you have to pay at the time of booking, so I didn't book. Is that a new policy? I know I didn't pay at the time of booking last time.

    Our 12 year old (less than a month until 13 at the time) is on the fence about whether he wants to go or not, so I am not prepaying and him not want to go. We are staying at the Poly, and we are planning on eating and staying at the resort, so he wants to stay in the room with pizza and his phone instead of going to the kid's club. My daughter is really looking forward to Lilo's again.

    Besides my drama, I am surprised that they are closing this service. I am way more hesitant to hire a stranger to babysit in the room with my kids than letting them go to a childcare center with other kids and adults and most likely video surveillance.
     
  14. HopperFan

    HopperFan "It's a bug-eat-bug world out there, princess."

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    I think because WDW doesn't discourage kids in "adult" atmosphere restaurants and bars.
     
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  15. Melissa Perez

    Melissa Perez Mouseketeer

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    One of my best memories out of going to disney world for the last 25 years was the night I got to do the kids club and my parents went to Pleasure Island (so yes, a while back). I think I had more fun that night than they did!
     
  16. NS8VN

    NS8VN I know Google-Fu

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    I wonder if part of the problem was that it wasn't well advertised? I know I found out about Lilo's Playhouse from here and told DW. We reserved it at the same time we reserved BBB for our trip last year because we were afraid to miss reservations. DD loved it, one of her favorite memories from the trip. But nobody else I know had really heard of it.

    I understand for many a trip to WDW is purely family time and no arguments from me how everyone treats their time there, but for us that evening was one we all looked forward to. DD loved the idea of an evening on her own, ordering dinner and getting to spending time with other kids. Meanwhile we enjoyed an evening with friends at Disney Springs and Trader Sam's. After 4 straight days of parks it was a fantastic break for all of us. We were excited about possibly staying at the Poly on our next trip and having a resort day in the middle of the week and she loved the idea of being able to stay until they closed this time.

    We are cruising DCL here in a few weeks and DD wants to go straight to the club because of her time at Lilo's. So we are pretty disappointed in seeing it close. Guess we will see what they come up with to replace it, if they do replace it...
     
  17. crayon3448

    crayon3448 Mouseketeer

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    We used the Sandcastle Club to go on a date night to Epcot also. The kids had a great time. The only downside for us was that we were staying at CBR and didn't have a car, so it wasn't easy to get back to our resort late at night using Disney transportation with 2 tired kids. Hopefully they will at least keep the Dolphin Club Open or come up with another option.

    We paid at time of booking when we used it in late 2015.
     
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  18. smiths02

    smiths02 DIS Veteran

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    I think a PP pointed out that the clubs on the cruise are free. Another thing about the kids club on the cruise is that they are advertised heavily and are seen as THE activity for the kids on the ship. I know there are ports of call, nighttime shows, etc., but we are about to go on a Disney cruise and my kids pretty much think a cruise is kids club, aqua duck, and the beach.
    A cruise is also just seen as more there are adult activities, there are kid activities, and relaxation in general.
    I'm not saying WDW can't be relaxing or fancy dinners or adult activities (spa, etc.), but it is more of a theme park. It is expensive to have a date night at Disney compared to at home. Also, the hours are limited, if you have 2-3 kids it almost gets cheaper to have a babysitter in your room, or if you have kids who aren't the right ages.
     
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  19. _auroraborealis_

    _auroraborealis_ I like marshmallows. And adult beverages.

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    I'm guessing they don't replace it.

    On DCL, it is built into trip cost. At WDW, it is on a fee basis. While the fee is not unreasonable, there is a minimum staffing of 3 required regardless of how many kids are signed up for a given night, and that's before any "magical extra visitors" are staffed and paid. They are well below even 10:1 ratios most nights.
     
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  20. Surgie2

    Surgie2 DIS Veteran

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    Yes I reserved for 3 grandkids for May and prepaid. Can’t remember the cancel policy - maybe 24 hours. I’m sure they need to figure out staffing needs in advance rather than just have drop offs. But I was hoping they are still open during the day for a look around so lids can get familiar.
     
  21. OKW Lover

    OKW Lover Retired and living 2 miles from The Castle. DIS Lifetime Sponsor

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    How about the one at WL? Is that still open?
     

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