Just the ticket: huge demand for Shanghai Disneyland sees first day sold out within five minutes

Tickets went on sale at 12.01am on Monday with scalpers charging up to 3,400 yuan extra for a 499 yuan ticket

PUBLISHED : Monday, 28 March, 2016, 1:22pm
UPDATED : Tuesday, 16 January, 2018, 3:44pm

Tickets for the first day opening of Shanghai Disneyland in June were snapped up within five minutes of going on sale yesterday, reflecting huge demand from enthusiastic mainland visitors who have been looking forward for the amusement park for years.

Tickets for visits up to September 13 are available, but the tickets for the grand opening, on June 16, were sold out in five minutes after the online sales system was opened from 12.01am yesterday.

The massive demand for tickets was also popular with ticket scalpers, who have been charging up to eight times the normal price.

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The resort, three times bigger than the Hong Kong version, will offer an “East-meets-West” fusion of classic Disney entertainment and traditional Chinese elements, Disney said.

The park’s Enchanted Storybook Castle was set to be a landmark attraction for Shanghai Disneyland because it would be “the first castle to represent all the Disney princesses”, as well as being “the tallest, largest and most interactive Disney castle in the world”, the company said.

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Chang Jiang Securities analyst Li Jin wrote in a note yesterday that the Shanghai park was likely to trigger massive consumer demand, while the resort’s revenue was estimated to be between 24 billion yuan (HK$29 billion) and 40 billion yuan a year.

There are fears the opening of the Shanghai theme park may hit tourist traffic to Hong Kong. More than 20 per cent of mainland tourists who visited Hong Kong in 2014 included a visit to Hong Kong Disneyland, according to Hong Kong’s tourism board.

People are also interested because it’s in Shanghai and more convenient for mainland residents to travel there than to Hong Kong
Yao Kunyi, a tourism professor

Hong Kong Disneyland recorded a profit of HK$332 million in 2014, but was hit by a 23 per cent drop in the number of mainland tourists last year.

Professor Yao Kunyi, a tourism professor at Shanghai University of International Business and Economics, said the marketing campaign of the Shanghai park over the past few years had increased people’s interest. “People are also interested because it’s in Shanghai and more convenient for mainland residents to travel there than to Hong Kong,” he said.

Two types of tickets are available for Shanghai Disneyland. A peak-day ticket, costing 499 yuan for an adult, covers weekends, and all of July and August.

The average-day ticket costs 370 yuan.

People that want to be “early bird” visitors and go to the theme park during in the first two weeks after its official opening will also have to pay the peak-day price.

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As of noon on Monday, rooms were fully-booked at the resort’s two on-site hotels, the Toy Story Hotel and the Shanghai Disneyland Hotel, for the first two weeks of the resort’s opening, according to the booking website.

Travel agents and scalpers have been well prepared to take advantage of the huge demand for tickets.

Apart from about 10 major online travel agents, individual scalpers on China’s top e-commerce platform, are offering tickets for Shanghai Disneyland’s first two weeks, with extra fees and commissions ranging from 61 yuan to 3,400 yuan.

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Shanghai Disneyland has warned people to buy tickets only from reliable sources, and to always enter their identity card numbers when making purchases as ID cards will need to be shown with tickets to gain access.