70 Jobs Cut at Universal Orlando

Following yesterday’s post about Disney’s voluntary lay-offs comes word via the Orlando Sentinel that Universal Orlando is also eliminating jobs.

From the OS:

Universal declined to identify the positions it eliminated. It described them as mostly management-level jobs, with some in administrative and support areas.

Yikes! For all that people gripe about tourists in Central Florida, this is proof positive that our local economy really needs them – now more than ever.

The park is set to open two new attractions within the next twelve months: “Hollywood, Rip, Ride, Rockit” roller coaster and “The Wizarding World of Harry Potter,” based on the famous literary wizard.

In related news, it appears that Universal has also started charging $3 for parking after 6pm in its garages. I can see where they might think that it’s a quick revenue source, but I wonder how that little nugget is affecting locals coming out to CityWalk at night for movies and entertainment. Not to mention they now have to pay employees to collect this extra toll all night, whereas before nobody manned the booths after 6pm.

4 Comments so far

  1. Terry Howard (orl_terry) on January 23rd, 2009 @ 9:42 am

    I still think these park pricing changes and even our downtown parking rate adjustments show some kind of fundamental misunderstanding of basic economic principals. If demand is down, you either lower prices or cut supply to spur it. They certainly aren’t cutting hours, but instead they are raising prices. That is supposed to draw people out to the park, especially when the decreased demand is becoming people have less money to spend? Whoever made these decisions, personally, from me to you, you are a grade A moron.

  2. Michelle Snow (orl_michelle) on January 23rd, 2009 @ 3:15 pm

    I agree completely. If people have less money to spend, don’t charge them more to patronize your business.

    I understand businesses are struggling, too, but there are other ways to try to offset the lower revenue.

    As I pointed out – sure they’re charging $3 for after 6pm parking, and one might think that’s quick revenue, but between having to now pay people to staff the toll booths longer and the possibility of people now deciding to go elsewhere to avoid paying the $3, it just seems counterproductive.

    Try cutting park hours or putting together specials. In slow tourist periods, they really need to do more to draw the local market and I think most of us won’t pay $3 just to park to go to CityWalk.

    And don’t even get me started on the new downtown parking fees… LOL

    But raising prices or assessing additional fees is extremely counterproductive. If people don’t have the money to go out in the first place, raising prices is only going to discourage them further.

  3. ryaninc on January 24th, 2009 @ 10:21 am

    Yeah, we noticed the $3 parking charge last time we were there. We have annual passes, so it’s no big deal for us. But if we didn’t have them, we would definitely be going somewhere else for movies or whatever in the evenings.

    And I agree, there has to be a better way to bring in more customers than raising prices and dropping services. SeaWorld lost the free beer, Universal raised parking prices. Very unfortunate.

    And for those of us looking for jobs, all these job losses just mean I’ll have an even harder time finding employment. Sigh.

    At least it’s getting warmer! :-)

  4. stillhere on January 24th, 2009 @ 9:01 pm

    Hey I don’t know if you all know Old Town is another amusement park in Kissimmee. It has rides, shops, food, and entertainment. It’s always free to park and free to enter property. They have great family value to their ride packages and/or all day ride bands. They have free events, and entertainment. You might want to check it out.

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