Disney is making headlines these days with the recent ground breaking of Shanghai Disneyland in Pudong. The iconic brand has actually been visibly seeding interest since ’08 when the first Disney English school opened in Shanghai. Their glossy form of “edutainment” has done a formidable job of exposing all things Disney to the mainland, but how Mickey and Minnie’s fantasyland home eventually unravels is already casting popular doubt.
Of all previous ventures, Shanghai Disneyland will be the smallest and potentially draw the longest queues — especially if tickets are, purportedly, sold at RMB 250-300 ($38-$46). Those who experienced sizable wait times for pavilions during Expo 2010 Shanghai will know just where patience levels lie when tourists are faced with a tightly packed sea of people. Expo 2010 Shanghai became popularly known as the roubohui (肉搏会), a hand-to-hand combat event which sounds like shibohui (世博会), the Chinese word for Expo, because of the amount of fights that brought out during long waits in the sweltering summer heat. Even if mainland tourists can be sold a tame, enjoyable pass through Magic Kingdom, those pulling the strings will have to engrain a proportionally large amount of locally appealing elements to avoid a Hong Kong-esque dilemma.