UK theme parks from another point of view!

 
Burniel
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February Half Term 2015

Sat Dec 13, 2014 10:56 pm

So, Thorpe Park have a Half Term event for next February.

Pre-book only, even with an Annual Pass, and a £5 charge applies to Standard MAP Holders.

I'm a bit disgusted. So far the only known rides in the lineup are The Swarm, Stealth and Angry Birds Land (I believe), and so why should I have to pay £5 to get in? In March, I'll stroll into the park for free, and go on every ride, whereas in February, when it's colder and more of an effort to make the 40-minute journey, I have to PAY to get about at third of the park.

Also, I'm expected to book in advance for a date in mid-winter? I could end up being there in a blizzard with all the rides closed!

Thing is, I was really interested in going to this, but at £25 for a family of four who all own MAPs (when parking fee is taken into account), I'm left wondering whether it's worth it.

Thoughts?
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sw7nutter
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Re: Feb Half Term 2015

Sat Dec 13, 2014 11:06 pm

Disgusting to charge for it. I know many here on the forum don't seem to see the problem with it but quite frankly its outrageous to charge for it. They have seriously damaged their reputation with this and the amount of hate and complaints they have managed to generate on social media is rivalling that of fright nights.
 
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Morgan
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Re: Feb Half Term 2015

Sat Dec 13, 2014 11:37 pm

Braniac won't be cheap to hire.
Although its disgusting. You pay for 12 month entry but still pay £5!?
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sw7nutter
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Re: Feb Half Term 2015

Sat Dec 13, 2014 11:47 pm

Brainiac was free during Easter. I don't see why it should now count as a £5 charge to people who have already paid up to £169 for a years entry. This is not a special event its a money grab off their loyal customers. They should be ashamed and I hope the British public make sure they know that.
 
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Danny
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Re: Feb Half Term 2015

Sun Dec 14, 2014 1:27 am

At the end of the day a STANDARD pass is exactly what it says, STANDARD. These, whether you agree or not, are SPECIAL EVENTS. They aren't recognised by the park a standard working days, hence the small charge. It's another way or persuading people to opt for the more expensive pass. I think this discussion is just a pure waste of time as its not like Thorpe will drop the charge, the topic will just be full of rant.
 
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Re: Feb Half Term 2015

Sun Dec 14, 2014 11:35 am

DannyG wrote:
At the end of the day a STANDARD pass is exactly what it says, STANDARD. These, whether you agree or not, are SPECIAL EVENTS. They aren't recognised by the park a standard working days, hence the small charge. It's another way or persuading people to opt for the more expensive pass. I think this discussion is just a pure waste of time as its not like Thorpe will drop the charge, the topic will just be full of rant.


Well said Danny, there is no point in it and it isn't constructive. Merlin are well within their rights to do this and who can blame them trying to cash in before Paramount provides them with more competition.
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Re: Feb Half Term 2015

Sun Dec 14, 2014 11:52 am

Well thats not strictly true. They have dropped the charge in the past. They did it with summer nights dropping it from £15 to £5 becuase people complained. If people stopped siding with the company on something which is quite frankly outrageous then we would see change, however the more people which say oh it is a standard pass they wont. As i keep saying no other theme park on the planet has charged pass holders for half a park. So why on earth do thorpe think they can get away with it. Yes it may be a standard pass but every other park which has different levels of passes still let you in all year round. It is just thorpe that doesnt. In fact there is even a special section in the terms and conditions which allows them to charge. So by all means side with the company that doesnt care for its customers but there is a lot more parks out there which do care for customer satisfaction. Those will be the ones seeing my money while thorpe will not being seeing a penny from me again.
 
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Re: Feb Half Term 2015

Sun Dec 14, 2014 12:21 pm

I personally don't see how it is outrageous. There are worse things that they could have done, such as completely excluding standard pass holders. As this is an event (even though you personally don't think it is) I personally wouldn't care if they charged VIP and premium pass holders £5. You get something that you wouldn't normally get. The park is never normally open in February. And the fact that they are even doing a February half term event is a massive bonus. It will probably cost them more than what they will earn to be open for a week when you take into account the cost of running operations and staff that will be needed. So in fact, if it wasn't for the £5 the park wouldn't even open. So technically your doing a massive favour to every other enthusiast. You are making the closed season less glum.

Also it will be interesting to see what other rides, if any, will be open.
 
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Re: Feb Half Term 2015

Sun Dec 14, 2014 12:32 pm

On a more positive note...
Will they do on-ride photos during FHT?
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Re: Feb Half Term 2015

Sun Dec 14, 2014 1:03 pm

Of course they will do on ride photos. They want as much money as they possibly can. Also of course they will make their money back on this otherwise they wouldnt open. If there was a potential to make a loss the park would remain closed. They are charging £5 for the simple reason of they dont want us to attend. Less £5 people going the more £12.50 people. Simple as that.
I understand that a lot of you are alton fans so charging doesnt seem to bad but in my opinion it is disgusting to charge people who have already paid £169. I got a standard becuase i dont drive and im not a fan of fright nights. I refuse to upgrade or pay more if they are just going to call everything an event. I would prefer the park closed than have to pay £5. Opening for feb always ended badly when they used to do it. I expect the same this time.
 
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Re: Feb Half Term 2015

Sun Dec 14, 2014 1:12 pm

Will they still be doing VIP experiences? I quite fancy one of those lift hill walks.
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Re: Feb Half Term 2015

Sun Dec 14, 2014 1:18 pm

I doubt they would do vip experiences in feb. It will be hard enough to get the staff so making them stay even later would probably not be in Thorpe's interest. However it is more money so they may still do them.
 
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Morgan
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Re: Feb Half Term 2015

Sun Dec 14, 2014 1:23 pm

OK, I have e-mailed them asking this.
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Jack
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Re: Feb Half Term 2015

Sun Dec 14, 2014 4:16 pm

I believe they will keep doing the experiences in feb, it may be very limited to what will be done :) ORPs will always be done no matter what, it gets Merlin some money, and people are happy that they get them :) I personally am looking forward to this, and am hoping Thorpe don't ruin it by doing 1 train operations on whatever coaster opens :P
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Morgan
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Re: Feb Half Term 2015

Sun Dec 14, 2014 4:26 pm

Cheers!
My Dad will probably say ita too cold, but he climbs mountains :P
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Burniel
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Re: Feb Half Term 2015

Sun Dec 14, 2014 6:38 pm

DannyG wrote:
At the end of the day a STANDARD pass is exactly what it says, STANDARD. These, whether you agree or not, are SPECIAL EVENTS. They aren't recognised by the park a standard working days, hence the small charge. It's another way or persuading people to opt for the more expensive pass. I think this discussion is just a pure waste of time as its not like Thorpe will drop the charge, the topic will just be full of rant.

Why is it free at Chessington and Towers then? Most people I know who have been to all three parks wouldn't say Thorpe is the best, so why is it always the one that gets hit with a charge?

They'd do better by charging TPAP holders, as they were literally GIVING those away last year (there was a time where if you paid full price on the gate, you were upgraded to an AP for free!).

The only thing "SPECIAL EVENT" about this event is the cold weather and limited ride availability. I understand that this I out of season, but I bought an ANNUAL pass, not a SEASON pass. I'd happily pay the price if they announced another big coaster and a couple of flats, but I don't see that happening.
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Re: Feb Half Term 2015

Sun Dec 14, 2014 7:05 pm

This is a special event though as they're open outside their usual opening times because they're hosting an event - it's pretty self explanatory really.

Thorpe do seem to have a policy now of charging standard pass holders a small up-charge for events. As long as it's consistently operated, then I see no problem. If you want a pass with no exclusion dates, then when purchasing your pass you should have bought the premium pass, otherwise what is the point in Merlin having different levels?

You wouldn't buy a lower spec car for £7k and then complain it didn't include parking sensors, sat nav, self park, leather interior etc. This is exactly the same principle, albeit a microsomal example.
 
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Re: Feb Half Term 2015

Sun Dec 14, 2014 7:53 pm

They could rework the perks like all the other parks in the world. Have it so they always get in but are disadvantaged in other areas such as 10% instead of 20%. Or have exclusive ride nights for the premium holders. I'm sure that would sell a lot more premium passes if every now and then Thorpe opened 4 or 5 rides for pass holders. Premium should be stuff added rather than standard with stuff taken away.
 
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Re: Feb Half Term 2015

Sun Dec 14, 2014 8:07 pm

sw7nutter wrote:
They could rework the perks like all the other parks in the world. Have it so they always get in but are disadvantaged in other areas such as 10% instead of 20%. Or have exclusive ride nights for the premium holders. I'm sure that would sell a lot more premium passes if every now and then Thorpe opened 4 or 5 rides for pass holders. Premium should be stuff added rather than standard with stuff taken away.


You really do seem to have a very anti-Merlin flare going on.
It's rather simple:
Standard Annual Pass - Standard entry for 12 months to Merlin attractions with date exclusions and no special events (up charge required)
Premium Annual Pass - Standard entry for 12 months to Merlin attractions without date exclusions and includes special events
VIP Annual Pass - VIP privileges and upgraded entry to Merlin attractions for 12 months. No date exclusions and includes special events.

Choose your pass based on how you believe you will best utilise it. There's no hidden agenda etc. You have to bare in mind that Thorpe has a considerably limited gate figure in comparison to Alton Towers so they do have to recoup special event fees from those who have the lower priced Annual Passes - it seems only fair.
 
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Re: Feb Half Term 2015

Sun Dec 14, 2014 8:15 pm

Other parks which have multiple tier season passes still let them in all year round. I got a standard as I don't drive and don't like fright nights. If it was mentioned that they were going to count a reduced ride offering as an event then I probably would have got a premium.
I do indeed have an anti merlin vibe going on as in my opinion they are one of the worst theme park operators around. They do everything the easy way. Other parks would add stuff to higher level passes while merlin take stuff away from the lower levels. Queue times are too long so they don't add higher throughput rides they develop some virtual system. That is why I don't like them and its also why I get annoyed when people defend them.

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