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HK Disneyland will cost more to visit
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Hong Kong Disneyland will increase ticket prices by as much as 19 percent next week, the first adjustment since the amusement park opened in 2005.

The ticket price for adults starting Monday will be HK$350 (US$45), compared with HK$295 for visits during regular days and HK$350 during peak days, the company said in a statement yesterday. Children will be charged HK$250 as the park standardizes ticket prices and drops peak rates.

Hong Kong Disneyland is raising admission prices as its parent company, Walt Disney Co, cuts staff to cope with falling advertising revenue caused by the global recession.

Hong Kong's Travel Industry Council said the increase was ''bad timing'' amid declining tourism.

''Everywhere in the world, governments are trying to attract tourists,'' said the council's Executive Director Joseph Tung. ''Raising ticket prices to these levels would bring a huge negative impact.''

The Hong Kong government has a 57-percent stake in the park, Bloomberg News said. The global recession has reduced spending on leisure travel to the city. The growth in the number of tourists slowed to 4.7 percent to 29.5 million in 2008, after gaining 10 percent in 2007, Hong Kong tourism board figures show.

''We have already alerted the park to consider the impact on the park's operations, visitors and the tourism industry,'' Hong Kong's Commerce and Economic Development Bureaus said in a faxed statement.

(Shanghai Daily February 4, 2009)

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