UK theme parks from another point of view!

 
jred
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Rude staff?

Fri Jun 01, 2012 9:56 pm

Hi, I'm sorry if this type of post isn't allowed, as far as I can tell it should be okay, but I was wondering if anybody else has had trouble with the staff at AT in the past few years?

I went to Alton Towers every year since about being six years old, it's about a five/six hour drive for me and I absolutely love the place and I'd never experienced a problem until quite recently where last year I had a really unpleasant experience with staff twice.

I was travelling with a group of about five and one of us was quite overweight (I'll call them X) so this is where the problem stems from. When asking a question at the lockers about the log flume we initally got a helpful answer but then got told, while they looked X up and down "but if you're going on with a really fat person watch out because you'll get soaked" which started the two guys off sniggering. Granted, they were young, late teens, maybe early twenties but I think they could have kept that joke to themselves given they're meant to be working and it obviously gave us a rubbish start to the day.

Later on, riding Air, X had to stand out while the rest of us went on. A stroppy young girl handed X a fast-pass and said "Here, you can have this to go on another ride since you're too fat for this one."

I've never had staff be so rude before, especially not at Alton Towers and I'm wondering is this normal staff behaviour now, or am I overreacting? Obviously X is considerable overweight and there's no denying that but I think the staff were over the top about it and made X and the rest of the group feel quite put out and annoyed on what should have been a great day. I feel a bit anxious about returning now :cry: and I'm not really sure what to do. Is this just something we'll have to put up with on our next visit?
Last edited by jred on Sat Jun 02, 2012 11:51 am, edited 1 time in total.
 
Longy

Re: Rude staff?

Fri Jun 01, 2012 10:02 pm

The staff have never been like this to me.
This is appalling behaviour!

Did you speak to Guest Services about this?
They should be able to sort this out!

I hope the staff members have been fired as this should never be said to a guest, let alone in such circumstances.

I do hope your friend is feeling better now!
 
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Coke
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Re: Rude staff?

Fri Jun 01, 2012 10:03 pm

No, you should not expect or tolerate that - I personally have never seen such behaviour from Towers staff, but if I was to get it, I would be off to Guest Services with the staff member's first name and their area of work to file a complaint. Staff should always conduct themselves in a professional manner and it was unfair you or your friends received this type of behaviour.
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thefatone
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Re: Rude staff?

Fri Jun 01, 2012 10:06 pm

I highly, highly, highly, doubt a staff member said such a thing - did they do it in your earshot? Or is your friend generalising due to being upset about not being able to go on or other reasons?

From every experience I've had, particularly on rides, they're extremely sensitive about any issues and wouldn't go out to blatantly insult anyone...
 
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RyanY
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Re: Rude staff?

Fri Jun 01, 2012 10:36 pm

That sort of behaviour from staff members is absolutely disgusting and you should deffinatly not have to put up with it.

If I were you I would either go to Merlin or Alton Towers to make a complaint about this.

I hope it didn't totally ruin your day.
 
jred
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Re: Rude staff?

Fri Jun 01, 2012 10:45 pm

Thank you for all the replies, it was a shock, because I've been going there once a year for about sixteen years now and I've always had an amazing time with this one exception. Thefatone, I definitely heard what the two guys in the locker area said as they said it to the group, I'm not so sure about what happened on Air. I've been with my dad before and he used to be very overweight but he never got any bad treatment whatsoever, the staff were always completely accommodating and pleasant and it did put a bit of a downer on the day I'm sad to say. I never thought to complain at the time which was stupid of me, but I'm glad to see this isn't behaviour which is usually tolerated.
 
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Tom G
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Re: Rude staff?

Fri Jun 01, 2012 11:53 pm

Well if your quotes are accurate, that's pretty crude of them. You should have retaliated with swipes about them being on minimum wage and being Merlin's personal lamp post for cocking their leg up against.
 
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Stelios7
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Re: Rude staff?

Sat Jun 02, 2012 12:11 am

I have luckily never experienced this, ones that have and complain shouldn't if they've been to Drayton Manor. Alton staff are trained by Magic HQ to always have high spirits. The only time I've seen a staff member snap was one kid swinging into others when the Toadstool wasn't in motion.
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LondonLiam
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Re: Rude staff?

Sat Jun 02, 2012 8:34 am

I visited last weekend and most staff were, as usual, very kind and polite with the exception of one member of staff working on the Forbidden Valley fastpass stand. When I asked what the wait for Nemesis was, due to my accent I don't put much emphasis on the T in wait, so he replied with "Do you mean waiT" As you imagine I was caught slightly off guard and annoyed to corrected on how to speak. Granted it doesn't seem that major deal but it was slightly embarrassing to be corrected infront of my other half!
 
Jazzy B Bunny
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Re: Rude staff?

Sat Jun 02, 2012 10:24 am

I'm going tomorrow. I hope I'm not an 'X' :(
 
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hex4ever
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Re: Rude staff?

Sat Jun 02, 2012 10:41 am

I have never seen this behavior by any staff member, they tend to shy away from the word fat and try to say things like you are too large or something, they tip-toe around it all. The staff by the lockers may have been trying to be funny and cheerful to in-keep with the theme of the day and just majorly misjudged it. Or even if they were new and nervous they may have said it without realizing, I know I make nervous jokes which never go down well. And with the Air thing, is there a chase that X may have over reacted? I mean its embarrassing in its self and no one wants to be singled out when in a situation like that, and the air staff are very friendly so I could never imagine this type of discrimination coming from them. I have found that a similar thing happens with some people of a separate ethnicity, there's a girl at my school who we can call Y, now this girl is originally from Nigeria so she has a different skin color, we as a school accept that and don't mind, but she is always on the lookout for 'racist' behavior, like if I say the word black in the same room as her I'm a racist, even if I was talking about the black car outside. I know this is a ramble, but is there any chance that X may have been on the lookout for discriminating behavior and as a result saw it in being singled out with the fast pass? By the way, I am in no way condoning this behavior, it is less than satisfactory from Towers staff, all I am saying is that there may be other parts to this story.
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mrbrightside
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Rude staff?

Sat Jun 02, 2012 11:08 am

This behaviour is at odds with the fantastic work that the vast, vast majority of staff at the park do! I wouldn't be put off by such a thing happening at all. If something bad happens with your day, visit guest services or drop them an email citing the names of the staff members. They will be very apologetic and sort the issue out.

However, it is VERY rare that negative experiences with staff will happen as, like I sad, the staff at Towers are generally all fantastic.


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Coasternut
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Re: Rude staff?

Sat Jun 02, 2012 11:37 am

Tom G wrote:
Well if your quotes are accurate, that's pretty crude of them. You should have retaliated with swipes about them being on minimum wage and being Merlin's personal lamp post for cocking their leg up against.


Maybe you should show a little more respect to the many members of this forum who happen to work at the park and are incredibly passionate about what they do, regardless of how much they get paid.
 
Jordan

Re: Rude staff?

Sat Jun 02, 2012 12:36 pm

Actually, given that a lot of staff at Towers are under 21, a lot of the staff actually get paid above the minimum wage - the minimum wage for workers aged 18-20 is £4.98/hour.
 
code-red
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Re: Rude staff?

Sat Jun 02, 2012 2:29 pm

The staff who work on respective rides are trained to deal with such situations.

As far as I'm aware, there are very strict procedures in place as to how situations such as the one mentioned should be dealt with. I'de imagine that these procedures don't include using words such as 'fat' to describe a guest and laughing/making jokes at the guests expense. Whenever I've seen staff deal with these situations, they've always been brilliant and certainly never gone out of the way to make a guest feel embarrassed, if anyone it's the staff who seem embarrassed.

If you can honestly say your friend was purposefully being made to feel embarrassed or treated rudely by the host, I would defiantly go to guest services and have a word. Though in the heat of the moment with the person being highly embarrassed, I can imagine anything the host says can be translated as 'rude'.
Last edited by code-red on Sat Jun 02, 2012 4:46 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
sebshep18
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Re: Rude staff?

Sat Jun 02, 2012 4:38 pm

they have seats at the front of most of the rides to stop there "embarrassing" moments its not the staffs fault that somebody is to big for the ride and they may feel embarrassed. Yes they should deal with the customers with respect but if your to big your to big if you can clearly see your too big for the seat why que up? all you do is cause embarrassment for staff having to say your to big and yourself on other customers watching you be rejected from a seat. i am not a large person but  i watch what i eat some people can't help it granted but most can and choose not to its there own doing, the embarrassment is there own
 
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hex4ever
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Re: Rude staff?

Sat Jun 02, 2012 5:50 pm

Coasternut wrote:
Tom G wrote:
Well if your quotes are accurate, that's pretty crude of them. You should have retaliated with swipes about them being on minimum wage and being Merlin's personal lamp post for cocking their leg up against.


Maybe you should show a little more respect to the many members of this forum who happen to work at the park and are incredibly passionate about what they do, regardless of how much they get paid.


Awwwwww snap :lol:
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Big Dave

Re: Rude staff?

Sat Jun 02, 2012 6:10 pm

I have experienced a few rude staff this year and I must admit, that some of them were not just a little rude, but extremely rude. Being a themepark, people expect to experience the best customer service they can get. This doesn't mean that staff cannot have a laugh with customers, but it does mean that basic manors need to come into play. Also having a theme on a ride or attraction does not mean the staff have permission to act rudely (experienced this on Sub-Terra and Th13teen).

In general  most staff are fine, but it does seem to be more of a problem this year.
 
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JoshC
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Re: Rude staff?

Sat Jun 02, 2012 7:06 pm

Big Dave wrote:
Also having a theme on a ride or attraction does not mean the staff have permission to act rudely (experienced this on Sub-Terra and Th13teen).

The staff on sub-terra are told to act rude, it's part of the theme. I know alot of the staff personally, and some of them are really nice and hate the fact that they need to act like that. It's just part of the job unfortunately.

Anyway on the topic of large guests, on Air especially there has always been trouble and the staff are trained not to say things about the guests, but concentrate on the restraint being too restrictive etc. Although guests do tend to make up their own story of whats been said, and complain that staff members have called them fat and things like that, when I know full well that they havent.
Last edited by JoshC on Sat Jun 02, 2012 7:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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ImURNemesis
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Re: Rude staff?

Sat Jun 02, 2012 7:33 pm

Thats horrible that this has happened to you. Have you thought about writting a formal complaint to merlin?
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