Walt Disney World in Florida has been accused of price-gouging for charging guests high prices while they were stuck in their hotels during Hurricane Irma.
Jennifer Bruns from Northbrook, Illinois, lashed out at the owners of the Orlando entertainment complex, whose sister park in California is known as the ‘happiest place on earth’, for selling expensive drinks and snacks to stranded people.
The theme park closed on Saturday following the forecast that the hurricane, which has left up to 4.5million Florida residents without electricity, would hit the state as a Category Five.
Ms Bruns, whose friends are staying at the Art of Animation resort, said she was ‘appalled’ by Walt Disney World’s ‘price gouging’ after posting a photo on Twitter of a small water for $2, and cartons of fruit juice for $2.69.
She said: ‘While the rest of us are digging deep to make donations & help, @Disney is price gouging guests stranded on property during Irma. #shameful.’
She added: ‘This is a time for corporations to show gestures of compassion and good will, not time to make more of a profit.
‘$15 for a hamburger! Totally appalled.’
A spokesman for the park told The Street that an ‘over-anxious cast member’ made a mistake on the pricing sheets in a rush to look after those trapped by the hurricane.
The spokesman added that the error was an isolated situation and that the park is offering ‘a variety of food and beverages available at discounted prices’.
Other park visitors have said they are pleased with the service they have had during the storm.
One Twitter user said: ‘I am honestly super impressed by the way we’re being looked after.’
Another added: ‘Four hour queues to get provisions for #HurricaneIrma? Nope. We just stepped off the bus tonight and Disney took care of us.’
Irma was downgraded to a Category One today and the most severe gusts at Walt Disney World are only being forecast as 60mph.
The theme park, which is expected to be open as normal tomorrow, has only closed five times in its history.
Walt Disney theme parks evacuated in 2001 following the September 11 attack due to national safety concerns, particularly in places with large crowds.
The parks also shut down twice in 1999 for Category Four Hurricanes Frances and Floyd which ravaged areas of Florida.
The Florida park also closed for Category Three Hurricane Jean in 2004 which was said to be the deadliest of its season, and back in October, in preparation for Category Five Hurricane Matthew.
Up to 10,000 people are believed to have stayed in their Florida Keys homes during the storm and now have no water, food or power, officials have warned.
Irma has left nearly 4.5million people without electricity as the destructive storm hammered the state with strong winds and threats of devastating storm surges.
Five deaths have been reported in Florida so far but officials have said they do not have a definitive number of fatalities yet.