Disney went conservative in 2009 and likely 2010 with rolling out new rides all over the place. Universal is giving the people new lands and ride at all of its parks. However, in the long run, I think Universal needs to stay fresh and to date.
Still, both looking very good for the times we are in!
Now Universal is in a stable financial position for the future. Not only that, they also have some huge attractions opening up soon. When the economy picks back up, those going to Orlando will see the new coaster and Harry Potter land, and all of the sudden Universal will look pretty appealing. Disney will be left recovering from the previous year with nothing new to speak of. Time will tell how they deal with it.
I Respond: You're kidding, right?
The Orlando Sentinel: "Orlando's No. 2 theme-park resort is warning that it could face a cash crunch by next spring, as turmoil in the credit markets -- and an obscure clause in its long-standing contract with famed filmmaker Steven Spielberg -- complicate its efforts to restructure nearly $1 billion of debt. If Universal Orlando is unable to rework the loans in coming months, it could be forced to slash spending on new attractions, seek more money from its owners or even put a piece of the resort up for sale."
All balance sheets aside there is one fundamental reason I believe Universal will persevere: They build better rides than Disney. PERIOD!
It would seem to me that Universal chose not to gamble with the money they had and profited, while Disney placed their bets and lost profit. This is still a business, and the object of the game is two-fold. Entertain the heck out of people and make money doing it. Would you rather have Universal be like Six Flags a few years ago...ignore the bottom line and spend themselves into oblivion? I didn't think you would, so good for Universal for being wise with their money and recognizing their position and the 2009 Orlando summer for what it is....which is to say a time to hold on.
The economy will eventually get on the right track. The issues with the new coaster will be fixed and the Harry Potter attractions will be open by next year. Disney will likely have made cuts and will be charging for things they didn't used to charge for...wait they already started that one.