UK theme parks from another point of view!

 
iNemesis

Flamingo Land - 29th May

Sun May 31, 2009 12:31 am

Hey,

I visited flamingo Land, for the first time ever on Friday, have mixed views on the place now, after seeing what the place has to offer.

On arriving at the park, I can't say I was struck by any form of excitement as I usually am when arriving at a Theme Park. The place lacked that special 'thing' that does this for me. The coasters were going around and provided a nice view whilst we ate lunch, before entering the park itself.

Although we entered at 2PM, we managed to do all the rides we wished to do, plus part of the Zoo. The queues were not too long, considering the park was quite busy with families & what seemed to be a majority of chavs / teenagers in groups.

Kumali queue reached 40 minutes (even when we joined at the 25 minutes point). They seemed to be very slow dispatching, as only one train was in use. The ride hosts also wasted time by not allowing people into the stalls until the train had arrived, and the gates had opened, adding a good 30 seconds on each time. It may not sound long, but when you consider the amount of trains before we got on, it adds up! Also, the themed 'announcements' were not timed correctly, and happened far too regularly (4 times in 5 minutes?). As each train arrived in the station, it's own announcement was played, usually over the top of the current 'no loose articles' one. It sounded silly and unprofessional for a Theme Park IMO. Despite this, it was a pretty good ride, even if I felt like I 'grayed-out' mid-ride!

The Lost River Ride also had a pretty lengthy queue; almost 50 minutes. Wasn't too bad, although it seemed the dispatch of each log were approximately one every 5 minutes (I have no idea if this is the maximum capability of the ride?). They seemed to be an absolute age in logs coming down the drop (again, 5 minutes). Was a pretty good ride, even if I did get absolutely soaked! It has to be the wettest ride I have ever ridden!

Velocity's queues were almost non-existent, with near enough walk-on each time. Quite an experience I'd say, the position in which you ride is just unique! It's a good experience, but I still prefer Rita :P.

Mumbo Jumbo seems to be near completion; all track is now in place, looks nearly ready to open. There were construction staff on site today, not too sure what they were up to; going up and down in a crane to the track. :? Didn't get any pictures (sorry!). I do have to say I think it looks a little, messy, in my opinion, purely for the extensive amount of supporting involved in the project. They seem to be everywhere, as the ride is very compact and crammed into a tiny space. Nevertheless, it does look like it's going to be quite a thrilling ride!

On another note, the staff at FL seem to be a little less trained that at other well-known Them Parks. On numerous occasions I heard swearing between the ride operators, smoking on the platform, and quite rude attitudes towards guests questions. This gives the park a very negative image, and does not do any good at all for the view. Whilst I'm on the subject, the staff operating Cliffhanger yesterday seemed to be careless & inconsiderate towards the guests who queued for 20 minutes, only to be turned away as 'the key broke' to operate the ride. Fair does, rides do break down, but they get fixed / engineers called as soon as it happens. In this case, it was the key to the ride that broke, and wouldn't engage in the slot. The op's tried numerous times to force it in, without luck. After realizing it wouldn't work, they discussed (quite loudly) the fact that they needed to radio for a new one, as the others had been 'lost'. Laughing between themselves for a good 5 minutes, they both refused to do it as they were too 'scared'. This is not acceptable behavior as visitors to the park paid good money to ride that attraction, only to be turned away because of the hosts being 'scared to radio for help'.

I also witnessed, on numerous occasions, teenagers tearing up the themeing around the park. During the queue line waiting, a pair of them attempted to tear down the rope fencing on LRR, and succeeded in destroying the top half, all of which happened in front of families. I hated seeing this kind of stuff, but remained silent as I don't like confrontation.

Overall, it was quite a good day & the weather was awesome! I hope to visit again in the Summer when Mumbo Jumbo should be open!

High's:
Managed to do all the rides,
Awesome weather (Y),
The 'Lost Kingdom' area was lovely-themed.

Low's:
Poor dispatch times on most rides.
Chav-ridden & tearing up the place,
Ride op's seemed to be 'careless' about there language / overall image.

By the way, I have a few '2 for 1' vouchers to the Park, if anyone needs them. Just PM me and I can happily send them via post for you to enjoy!
 
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seanyboyuk
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Re: Flamingo Land - 29th May

Sun May 31, 2009 1:14 am

fl is a good park it just the throughput of ride needs to be improved big time for it to become a major uk park or it could put people off coming back. also to the staff i havent had a problem yet with them but it seems to pop up a lot on here which is also bad too.

all you can do is just complain and hope they listen one day!

the lost river ride is a no go for me anymore, the queues are terrible, the ride is boring and i cant understand why the boat dispatch hasnt been sorted out.

how was the corkscrew since its had its silly padding finaly removed?!
 
iNemesis

Re: Flamingo Land - 29th May

Sun May 31, 2009 1:18 am

"seanyboyuk" wrote:
fl is a good park it just the throughput of ride needs to be improved big time for it to become a major uk park or it could put people off coming back............


The throughput is horrendous! Kumali could have easily ran on 2 trains (if the other one has no fault, no idea if it does?), easing the queue rapidly. Also, the little things like 'getting people into the stalls, ready' makes up those extra minutes.

Yeah, I believe with a little more training and initiatives to quicken up the dispatching, it could well be a great UK park! It's not altogether put me off going, but not exactly left me full of joy at the place..


"seanyboyuk" wrote:
how was the corkscrew since its had its silly padding finaly removed?!.

Didn't ride it because it seemed to be dispatching too slow for me to bother.
 
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seanyboyuk
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Re: Flamingo Land - 29th May

Sun May 31, 2009 1:19 am

yer ive talked at much length about kumali ive never seen it on 2 trains yet.
did they also do the silly thing of checking the restraints before unlocking them once the train is back in the station?

i prefer velocity over rita anyday it gives a better ride i think and it seems to eat the queues up better. it a shame 2 train mode wasnt designed but oh well....

i did flamingoland 3 times last year and im giving it a miss this time round i think next year i will pay another visit once mumbo jumbo has had its teething problems worked out and another ride comes along to tempt me up there.
 
iNemesis

Re: Flamingo Land - 29th May

Sun May 31, 2009 1:27 am

"seanyboyuk" wrote:
yer ive talked at much length about kumali ive never seen it on 2 trains yet.
did they also do the silly thing of checking the restraints before unlocking them once the train is back in the station?


Yeah, I was going to put that into the initial post. I couldn't understand why they did this. The train returned into the station, and both of the hosts walked up & down the train, tapping each harness, sometimes not even touching. I failed to understand what they were doing exactly, as it could hardly be considered 'checking', as they hardly touched them! Why do they do this? Before dispatch I can fully understand, but after-? Err, somebody, explain?

And I wonder why they don't use both trains, it seems silly not to though. I was observing, and when the train completes it's circuit around the track, and returns to the breaks at the end, it has to travel all the way around before entering the station. If there was another train, then this would make sense, but as they only run one, it seems a little silly & wasteful of the resources they have.
 
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seanyboyuk
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Re: Flamingo Land - 29th May

Sun May 31, 2009 1:29 am

indeed. infusion runs on 2 trains a lot and has the same brake run and station system from what i can gather so why not this ride? its also been mentioned its done on 1 train for wear and tear.
 
iNemesis

Re: Flamingo Land - 29th May

Sun May 31, 2009 1:33 am

"seanyboyuk" wrote:
indeed. infusion runs on 2 trains a lot and has the same brake run and station system from what i can gather so why not this ride? its also been mentioned its done on 1 train for wear and tear.


Meh, it kills throughput though! Are the estimated queueing time signs based on the 2 train operation, or 1? Reason I ask is because I did not wait the advertised 25 minutes at all! :x
 
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seanyboyuk
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Re: Flamingo Land - 29th May

Sun May 31, 2009 1:36 am

it will be 2 trains for sure. i never go on the ride if the queue is at the bottom of the ramp.
i hope mumbo jumbo has better throughput and they keep on the ball with it and not let it go after a few months which seems to be the parks problem of doing.

i also mentioned about the queue for mumbo jumbo on other places how i dont think its big
enough its going to have massive overflow i think.

did you also find the new walkway in the zoo is horrible? it should have been kept the old
way and all the animals had the money spent on improving the enclosures. it just looks
messy and horrible for them.
 
iNemesis

Re: Flamingo Land - 29th May

Sun May 31, 2009 1:08 pm

"seanyboyuk" wrote:
it will be 2 trains for sure. i never go on the ride if the queue is at the bottom of the ramp.
i hope mumbo jumbo has better throughput and they keep on the ball with it and not let it go after a few months which seems to be the parks problem of doing.


Well, IMO, they should change the signs as by the sounds of it, they never operate both trains. Almost like false advertising, as you no doubt wait longer than the estimated, advertised 25 minutes. With not visiting the park before, I was unaware of just how long I would be waiting in that queue...

"seanyboyuk" wrote:
i also mentioned about the queue for mumbo jumbo on other places how i dont think its big enough its going to have massive overflow i think.


Can't say I saw much of the queue line, apart from the new entrance near Kumali's arch. It looks pretty impressive, even if it has no signs as of yet.
 
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Re: Flamingo Land - 29th May

Sun May 31, 2009 4:37 pm

Typical "can't be arsed" Flamingo Land.
 
AstroDan

Re: Flamingo Land - 29th May

Sun May 31, 2009 9:52 pm

It's things like "one train" with a 40-minute queue and swearing or smoking staff that ensure Flamingoland remain in the "second tier" of parks.

Things like throughputs and staff quality tend to shine through on parks within the Merlin Group as they focus more on such things.

Flamingoland need to change the ethos for staff as well as spending £millions on rides!
 
iNemesis

Re: Flamingo Land - 29th May

Mon Jun 01, 2009 12:48 pm

"AstroDan" wrote:
Flamingoland need to change the ethos for staff as well as spending £millions on rides!


Totally agree! I find it quite shocking that they are willing to spend that kind of money on a new development, yet have the most obnoxious staff operating them. It does not make for a good image at all.
 
Spendleb
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Re: Flamingo Land - 29th May

Mon Jun 01, 2009 1:02 pm

I wrote to Flamingoland about the staff and chav control last season and they responded suggesting staff training would be looked into, again I witnessed smoking and swearing by the staff and general rudeness, really spoils the park in my opinion, went to Thorpe and Chessington last week and the staff were amazing, so friendly and professional !
 
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Re: Flamingo Land - 29th May

Mon Jun 01, 2009 8:20 pm

Good that you wrote to them! They must have cctv around the park and i am sure
there is some type of law all cctv in a public place has to be kept for upto 3 months?
 
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Re: Flamingo Land - 29th May

Tue Jun 02, 2009 4:49 pm

Nice that they got back to you.

Myself and 8 others didn't get any reply at all in March.

I suppose that speaks volumes of their customer service.
 
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Re: Flamingo Land - 29th May

Tue Jun 02, 2009 4:51 pm

"Mackem Lad" wrote:
Nice that they got back to you.

Myself and 8 others didn't get any reply at all in March.

I suppose that speaks volumes of their customer service.


Yeah it did take ages though, about 2 months from writing, they are obviously not bothered about customer service, a great shame as the park is getting better each year.
 
Anonymous

Re: Flamingo Land - 29th May

Tue Jun 01, 2010 7:46 am

Hi Nemesis

Taking my kids to flamingo land this month would appreciate some 2 for 1 tickets.

Thanks

Lisa
 
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mattbailey
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Re: Flamingo Land - 29th May

Tue Jun 01, 2010 10:41 pm

"lisaburton1972" wrote:
Hi Nemesis

Taking my kids to flamingo land this month would appreciate some 2 for 1 tickets.

Thanks

Lisa


You're probably out of luck Lisa, this topic is over a year old after all!
 
spike1911
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Re: Flamingo Land - 29th May

Sun Jun 13, 2010 7:59 pm

Staff can be poor at Flamingo Land. Kumali is operated poorly, the dispatch times are not acceptable for a major coaster. The management and staff seem to have a poor attitude and like to keep queues long. I remember august bank holiday waiting was around 45 mins and had 2 trains which reduced the waiting to 20. They then took the second train off which was explained by a ride op as the reason being 'not enough new riders'. Who cares? We paid our money and aren't second class citizens because we want to go on twice. Crazy.
 
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Ryan Kingdaka
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Re: Flamingo Land - 29th May

Thu Aug 12, 2010 1:00 am

"iNemesis""][quote=""seanyboyuk" wrote:
did they also do the silly thing of checking the restraints before unlocking them once the train is back in the station?


Yeah, I was going to put that into the initial post. I couldn't understand why they did this. The train returned into the station, and both of the hosts walked up & down the train, tapping each harness, sometimes not even touching. I failed to understand what they were doing exactly, as it could hardly be considered 'checking', as they hardly touched them! Why do they do this? Before dispatch I can fully understand, but after-? Err, somebody, explain?[/quote]

I heard that they do it to ensure the restraints come up. Apparently it is a common issue for the restraints to not open when they are released, so by pushing down on the restraints it is supposed to prevent this from happening.
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