Between cheap gasoline and the health care price slowdown, inflation has rarely been less of a problem for the American people. But there are always exceptions to any trend and price increases at Disney theme parks are a big one, with single-day passes to the Magic Kingdom shooting up from $99 to $105 this weekend.
No other major theme park has yet crosses the psychologically significant $100 barrier, but Disneyland, Disney California, Epcot, Animal Kingdom, and Hollywood Studios are all now at $99 or $97.
But don't take this as a harbinger of anything in particular. Andrea Lamond of the vacation rental company Owner Director observed last year that Disney prices have soared much faster than the overall rate of price inflation for years.
You can think of soaring theme park prices as the inverse of the general trend toward cheaper entertainment — Netflix, Spotify, and other aspects of the digital streaming revolution have made it cheaper and easier than ever to amuse yourself. But live parks have gone in the opposite direction, with little fundamental technological improvement to a business model that requires a lot of space and a lot of people standing around to monitor lines and collect tickets.