$15 to park at SFMM!

Thursday, January 19, 2006 1:54 AM
Unbelievable, but sadly true!

http://www.sixflags.com/parks/magicmountain/TicketInfo/index.html

All I can say is WOW!!!

*** Edited 1/19/2006 6:55:33 AM UTC by jomo***

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Thursday, January 19, 2006 1:56 AM
OK, I'll defend the highest of pricing, but...

Damn, that's hardcore.

Anyone still glad these guys took over?

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Thursday, January 19, 2006 2:12 AM
Believe or not, it gets worse. Check out SFGAD, SFA and of all places SFEG, all now $15 to park.
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Thursday, January 19, 2006 2:18 AM
Wow, they really are going to try to run these parks like a sporting event.

Making money with an amusement park is not the same as selling 8 Redskins home games each year.

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Thursday, January 19, 2006 2:26 AM
All in all, it will cost you $25 more to get into Six Flags America for one person. They have gone insane.

Glad I left that company a long time ago...

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Thursday, January 19, 2006 2:38 AM
Wait till you guys find out what they will be charging for season passes in 07.

$70? $100? $125? LOL... I think not.

Be careful what you ask for. *** Edited 1/19/2006 7:39:35 AM UTC by DWeaver***

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Thursday, January 19, 2006 2:54 AM
I'm not surprised by the way. I had a feeling this new regime was going to gouge every dime they can from unsuspecting guests.

I myself will make exactly 1 visit to a Six Flags park this year, to ride Tatsu. Obviously living in so-cal, I have a few more options. ;)

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Thursday, January 19, 2006 2:57 AM
- Weekdays $10.00
- Weekends $15.00

^ elitch...

ummmmmmmmmmmmm...........

i'll stay out of this one. i'm sure more will follow?

// just when you thought it couldn't get any worse... *** Edited 1/19/2006 8:13:36 AM UTC by SFDL_Dude***

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Thursday, January 19, 2006 3:07 AM

DWeaver said:
Wait till you guys find out what they will be charging for season passes in 07.

$70? $100? $125? LOL... I think not.


Well season passes are a whole different creature. They really should be up above that range.

My honest opinion is that a season pass costing the equivalent of three days is still more than fair. At a park like SFMM, that's $180. A full year of visiting for the price of three days seems totally reasonable.

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Thursday, January 19, 2006 3:14 AM
Any local park and rides? Strikes me there's a load of money to be made by charging people, say, $5 for a bus ride to a parking facility off site.
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Thursday, January 19, 2006 5:18 AM
The parking fees are just a sneaky way to raise admission prices - without actually raising the price for the admission tickets.
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Thursday, January 19, 2006 5:37 AM
Huh?

They raised the gate by 10 bucks and then raised the parking by 5 bucks.

So where are you getting this sneaky admission price crap?

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Thursday, January 19, 2006 5:41 AM
$15? OUCH! :-/

-Tina

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Thursday, January 19, 2006 6:24 AM
Wow, guess I'm happy I only went to one SF park in '05 anyway.

If these price changes are long term this is going to drastically change the way that the amusement park business works. Should be fascinating to see how the public reacts, and how the parks react to the reaction.

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Thursday, January 19, 2006 6:33 AM

If these price changes are long term this is going to drastically change the way that the amusement park business works.

Ahhh, most insightful comment on the topic that I've seen in a while.

These guys are trying to change the game. What if it works?

Do other parks follow?

What makes it even more interesting is the contrast to CP's new price drops.

What if the price hikes don't hurt SF attendance?

At the very least, it'll be interesting to watch this year.

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Thursday, January 19, 2006 6:58 AM

Lord Gonchar said:
OK, I'll defend the highest of pricing, but...

When Lord Gonchar starts to get nervous about these things, you know something bad is going down. :)

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Thursday, January 19, 2006 7:05 AM

Lord Gonchar said:

Do other parks follow?


I doubt it. Disney, Paramount, CF, and Busch all seem to have a business model that works, I'm not sure what they have to gain, whereas SF hasn't seemed to work since the Premier buyout.


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Thursday, January 19, 2006 7:27 AM
No, LG has a really good point. If SF proves that customers won't balk at $15 parking fees in some particular market, then the other parks in that market will be able to raise their parking rates to match without fear of losing their own customers. It doesn't matter that they are already profitable, as there is no upper bound on profits! ;)

However, proving that you can charge $15 in Valencia doesn't mean you can charge $15 in Sandusky. It does probably mean you can in Buena Park and Anaheim, though. So, I'm not sure the CP pricing strategy is necessarily inconsistent with what SFMM is doing.

If, say, SFDL does this too, then it will be interesting---the Buffalo economy is probably not so different from Cleveland/Detroit. So far, all of these places (EG, MM, A, and GAm) are in or very near big cities, where parking for $20 a day is not unheard of. If they try to charge $15 at, say, Great Escape, then all bets are off...

It's going to be a very interesting summer or two, that's for sure. At some level, these guys have to do something radical to keep this company floating under the weight of its debt load. I guess we'll see if this works.

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Thursday, January 19, 2006 7:51 AM
I agree Brian, Six Flags could possibly get away with this in more urban areas. I think the thing that is most interesting in the contrasts in Six Flags and Cedar Fair this year, with Cedar Point's price cut. But I still don't see a lot of other chains raising their parking rates if Six Flags' policy turns out to not piss off many, many customers.

Looking just at SFMM, how much is parking at Knotts, Disney, or Universal? I think this may be easier to discuss when looking at individual markets as opposed to chain-wide.

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Thursday, January 19, 2006 8:30 AM
According to the respective sites:

Knott's Parking $9
Disneyland Parking $10

You know the Urban thing is an obvious parallel. You're exactly right. These are the people that are used to that sort of price to park.

However, the effect across the industry (not just locally) cannot be easily dismissed. Why would any park (chain or not) ignore the fact that SF raised gate prices by $10 or $15 at most parks and then also bumped parking up to all time industry highs?

If it works, the other parks would be (excuse me french here) retarded not to follow in their footsteps.

To me, it looks like a situation with no inbetween for SF. This is eaither going to have a resounding effect on the industry or it's going to fail miserably.

If you listened to this week's podcast, Jeff touched briefly on "class-ism" - I think it's becoming more and more apparent that this might just be the case. These guys want people in their parks that aren't afraid to drop some cash for a good time. They don't want kids milking the season pass all summer. They don't want enthusiasts who use the pass to stop at a half dozen parks, credit whore and bail.

Quite frankly, with the de-emphasis of coasters and the new pricing (assuming passes are next in line), they really don't want the average enthusiast at their park at all.

It's a pretty radical way of forcing a demographic.

It's still a "wait and see" game as far as if this all pans out for them, but it's amazing how some minor changes have breathed new life into the SF discussion.

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