Disney will open the $5.4 billion Shanghai Disneyland in the first half of next year, if all goes according to plan. But people are already queueing.
Last week the company opened the world’s largest Disney Store in the city’s Pudong financial district. The opening was at exactly 1:14pm on May 20—a date and time that, in Chinese characters, is also used by young people to express love and long-term commitment. But entering the store required a pretty long-term commitment too. The line to get in was more than a mile long, according to Mail Online.
About an hour after opening, managers had to stop more potential shoppers from joining the queue for fear of overcrowding. Employees set out signs to let those waiting know the estimated time remaining.
This past weekend the store took more crowd-control measures. It limited the number of shoppers allowed in to 50 at a time, compared to twice that during the week, according to the Shanghai Morning Post (Chinese). Some Weibo users darkly joked (Chinese) about the possibility of a stampede, such as the one that killed dozens of revelers during New Year’s Eve celebrations in January. Those who did get into the store could choose from more than 2,000 products and explore a retail space measuring, according to a Disney press release, 5,000 square meters (54,000 sq ft).
Zheping Huang contributed reporting.