It's fairly clear from recent changes
that Alton Towers need to save on operating costs around the theme park. Regardless of who is calling for operational cuts or why cuts need to be made, it is pretty obvious that Alton cannot sustain their full operating costs at the moment.
Thus far this season we've witnessed proposals to first close Enterprise and Submission and then to close the Skyride on off-peak days, both later unsuccessful. However the changes being proposed now, not opening several rides, including two very popular headline coasters, and the closure/reduction of several food outlets and shops, are by far the most drastic seen to date.
I was on park last Tuesday (12th) and noticed that the closure of the food outlets and shops had already taken place. Whilst it wasn't a particularly busy day on park, several areas (Gloomy Wood and Adventure Land in particular) looked practically like a ghost town, helped significantly because Waffles & Ices and Spinball Noodles were shut. In my opinion, I think these recent closures are a bad move. Whilst these outlets may make a loss of off-peak days, surely the profit they would have no doubt generated on busy summer days would balance this out? With Nemesis Sub-Terra requiring around a dozen members of staff to operate, why are money-generating outlets requiring just 1 or 2 members of staff being shut?
Now obviously, I'm not suggesting that the operational cuts that Alton need to make can be done easily and that we hold the answers, but with different measures being trialled/introduced every couple of months, I think it's clear Alton are trying to find the best ways to cut operating costs whilst minimising impact on guests.
Which brings me to my question: what cuts do you think Alton should make?
For example possible cut backs could be:
- Run less popular rides in rotation (Submission in morning, Enterprise in afternoon)
- Close children's areas early at 3-4pm
- Run water rides during peak hours only (12pm-4pm)
- Start ERT at 9:30am
- Increase attendance on off-peak days with reduced prices (as done before 2005)
- Try and reduce staff numbers across all food outlets/shops (so all remain open on skeletal staff)
- Cut Sub-Terra actors/some ride hosts on off-peak days
- Limited Skyride/Monorail operation
I'd love to hear your ideas...