I don’t know that they charge for anything that other places don’t - but they charge a hell of a lot for everything. In my experience they are way pricier than other similar parks. And the other parks are expensive to begin with.
So, to all who answered, but didn’t answer, my “what do they charge for that other places don’t?” question...
The cereal thing...really? You thought they would provide free cereal for your children?
The paying for parking thing. Universal down the road charges $20 for parking. Sea World charges $20 for parking. Parking is not normally free in Orlando theme parks.
The maintenance thing. You said yourself that you worked there 40 years ago. Maintaining a 10 year old park and maintaining a 50 year old park are two very different things. As for the quality of the rides, may I point out that Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride and Snow White’s Scary Adventures were just as sucky as anything they have today. As for rides being shut down, you can go on several web sites and see what is being shut down for maintenance. They tend to do it during the less visited times of year, like February and September.
Yep, the lines are long, just like any other theme park.
Yep, it is not cheap to go in, just like any other (decent) theme park.
It is not for everyone.
Show me a place where you can pay one admission price (a Park Hopper pass) and over the course of a couple of days visit 4 distinctly different theme parks, two additional water parks, a shopping/restaurant area, multiple pristine PGA golf courses and more.
There is nothing else like it.