The Vault

20 Questions with a Disneyland Paris Fan – Matt Bateman

1. When did you first visit Disneyland Paris?
May 1997. I still have my park map and ticket, which was made of plastic in those days.

2. How many times have you been in total?

3. What’s your first memory of Disneyland Paris?
I think finding it weird that C-3PO was speaking French in the queue for Star Tours. I’m not sure but I guess I should have expected it!

4. What’s your favourite attraction and why?
Its a tie I think between Pirates of the Caribbean and Phantom Manor. I could ride them over and over and never tire of them. At a push I’d say Phantom Manor as it’s very different to Haunted Mansion attraction and therefore unique.

5. Where do you stay when you visit Disneyland Paris?
Usually at Premiere Classe Inn at Bussy Saint George. Its basic but reasonably priced and only two stops away on the RER. Hotels are for sleeping in and that’s it.

6. Where’s your favourite place to eat?
Earl of Sandwich. I’m a real budget boy so don’t often buy food in the parks. I think Earl offers a great selection at a good price – even better with 10% Annual Passholder discount!

7. What you do first when you get to Disneyland Paris?
Well, as I usually travel straight from the airport, its drop my bag off at guest storage before and getting those bubbles of excitement that never go away.

8. Pins, Vinylmations or neither?
Neither. I only have about 6 pins and just 1 vinlymation, which I bought in Tokyo Disneyland. I think vinylmations are quite creepy actually. I would rather save my money for a return trip and spend it on merchandise.

9. Do you want to see the Captain Jack Sparrow brought to the Disneyland Paris Pirates of the Caribbean like they have in Walt Disney World and Disneyland?
I don’t mind either way. The update is subtle and better than I expected but I like the Paris version being the only original left in the world.

10. Is there anything in Disneyland Paris you have never done that still would like to do?
I’d like to eat a Walt’s. I generally out of my budget – especially when an Earl if 5 euros!!

Matt Bateman in Disneyland Paris in 2009
Matt Bateman in Disneyland Paris in 2009

11. Before you go do you plan yours days or just see what happens when you are there?
I have a vague idea what I want to do (like getting a Fastpass for Big Thunder Mountain first thing), and as I do a lot of solo trips, I can do commando touring and hop from Disneyland Park to Walt Disney Studios to please myself depending on crowd levels.

12. What piece of music or song do you most associate with Disneyland Paris and why?
Probably Dancin’ (A Catchy Rhythm). I bought the CD back in 2002 and think its a great song. DLP has had some great parade tunes over the years.

13. If you had to make someone a fan of Disneyland Paris by showing them 5 attractions/buildings/shows – what would they be?
Main Street, U.S.A., Sleeping Beauty’s Castle, Pirates of the Caribbean, Phanom Manor and Tower of Terror.

14. If you could add one new attraction to Disneyland Paris what would it be and where would you put it?
The Indiana Jones Adventure: Temple of the Crystal Skull from Tokyo DisneySea. Though its very similar to the Indy attraction in California, the Tokyo version has several better features and effects. It is my all time favourite attraction and would fit perfectly in Adventureland and get rid of that excuse for an Indy attraction they have now.

15. If you could spend one night anywhere in Disneyland Paris, except the hotels, where would it be?
I’d want a comfy night’s sleep so in the Captain’s Cabin in Pirates of the Caribbean.

16. Are you planning to visit Disneyland Paris during the 20th Anniversary Celebrations, if so when?
I have already. I’ve seen Dreams! 10 times so far and can’t get enough of it.

17. If you could be a Cast Member for a day in Disneyland Paris, where would you work?
I’d like to be tour guide so I could share my enthusiasm with guests and tell stories behind the magic

18. Is there anything you dislike about Disneyland Paris or would change?
Where to start…..enforce the no smoking rules, police meet and greats properly with proper queues, arm CM’s with cattle prods so they can zap guests who get out of line, prevents guests from standing on flower beds etc during parades, keep up the maintenance of the park, give Walt Disney Studios a Disney California Adventure style make over………..shall I go on?

19. What’s your single greatest memory of Disneyland Paris?
[No answer – too many to mention maybe?]

20. In no more than 20 words I love Disneyland Paris because…
Its a totally immersive world of magic and make believe

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