Busch Gardens Tampa Advice

Tuesday, November 29, 2011 1:59 PM

Hello everyone, I am looking for a little advice on this park for anyone who has been there the week after the Christmas holiday. My wife and I were planning to be at the park for a couple of days on the 27th and 28th of December. How busy is it at this time? I am leaning towards getting a Quick Queue pass because I think it may be very busy and I would like to enjoy riding the coasters multiple times if possible. Has anyone used the Quick Queue Unlimited pass and if so is it worth it? Any other advice on the park would be greatly appreciated because I haven't been there in 13 years. Thanks!


Collin Aynes

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Tuesday, November 29, 2011 4:11 PM

It will be very busy.Buy the que pass .I was there a few years ago at this time Magic Kingdom and Epcot reached capacity.Would not be surprised if IOA reaches it this year(Harry Potter) when those parks are that crowded some folks think "I will drive to tampa and beat the crowds"Well if a few percent think that it will be highest crowds of any day you could go there.

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Tuesday, November 29, 2011 6:28 PM
rollergator's avatar

That week is fairly nightmarish (Disney seasonal pass blockout dates). Everyone and their sister is in town for bowl games, and to escape the horrendous northern weather, and FL is absolutely riddled with tourists.

I see you've checked the Quick Queue Unlimited, and that is likely your best option. Remember that operations at BGT can be ummm, less-than-spectacular. The B&Ms do seem to be doing a little better now that Cheetah Hunt sucks up so much of the queueing public. ;)

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Tuesday, November 29, 2011 7:29 PM
CoasterDemon's avatar

And Scorpion is a classic, kick-butt little ride ;)


Billy
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Tuesday, November 29, 2011 8:30 PM
Raven-Phile's avatar

I knew exactly what your post was going to be about when I saw that you contributed. You're getting too predictable, Billy. :)


R.I.P LeRoi Moore 9/7/61 - 8/19/2008
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Tuesday, November 29, 2011 8:44 PM
CoasterDemon's avatar

^Getting?

Oh man, don't forget Shakira! That's the best ride in the park :) Better?


Billy
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Tuesday, November 29, 2011 9:59 PM
Raven-Phile's avatar

No. Sheikra is lame.


R.I.P LeRoi Moore 9/7/61 - 8/19/2008
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Wednesday, November 30, 2011 5:39 AM

CoasterDemon said:
^Getting?

Oh man, don't forget Shakira! That's the best ride in the park :) Better?

Hips don't lie, and neither does Billy. My fave in the park...IMMO (in my MINORITY opinion) better than it's younger brother up north.


The amusement park rises bold and stark..kids are huddled on the beach in a mist

http://support.gktw.org/site/TR/CoastingForKids/General?px=1248054&...fr_id=1372

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Wednesday, November 30, 2011 8:54 AM
Vater's avatar

Not so sure that's the minority opinion. I seem to hear that from most people who've ridden both.

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Wednesday, November 30, 2011 10:17 AM

From the people who've told me of a preference and opinions I've read here and elsewhere, I've always sensed the Williamsburg version by about 60-40


The amusement park rises bold and stark..kids are huddled on the beach in a mist

http://support.gktw.org/site/TR/CoastingForKids/General?px=1248054&...fr_id=1372

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Wednesday, November 30, 2011 12:56 PM

Griffon is a slightly better ride in terms of the layout, but SheiKra has a much more interactive splash zone location. I guess it's really all in which quality you value more. I'm personally in the Griffon camp but they're both really fun and incredibly smooth coasters.

I've been on several different occasions during this week and it is definitely busy. Plan a little extra time to get into the parking lot because there will be a fair amount of people there already and (if you're parking in general parking) it'll likely take a little more time than you think to catch a tram and get to the front gate. It's been my experience that as long as you get there early that the first hour to 90 minutes after park opening aren't bad crowd-wise, but after that you're pretty much on your own!

You mentioned that you'll be there for two days but didn't mention if you already had tickets, passes, etc. If you don't already have tickets you may want to think about getting one annual pass (not a fun card, as the fun card doesn't include parking) and one regular ticket.

The annual pass is $128 (w/tax) but includes parking, which over the course of two days would run you $26 total. The annual pass also includes 10% off of merchandise, food, and Quick Queue which I see right now is priced at $55 per person for each of the two days you'll be visiting (thus saving you another $5 per person per day with the pass). Another benefit that's not listed on the BGT pass benefits page is that you get a 50% discount on one-day tickets to Busch parks outside of Florida. Those one-day tickets are also valid for the "get the second day" free deal that Busch/Sea World parks frequently offer. If you think you'll be visiting any other Busch or Sea World park outside of Florida in the next year then I'd definitely get an annual pass.

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Wednesday, November 30, 2011 5:41 PM

Several years ago, a fiend and I went there for Christmas. The day before and Christmas day the park was dead. The day after, though, was packed.

We also stayed at a hotel within walking distance so we didn't mess with parking.


Jerry - Magnum Fanatic
Famous Dave's- 206 restaurants - 35 states - 2 countries

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Sunday, December 4, 2011 11:28 AM
ApolloAndy's avatar

I didn't know fiends celebrated Christmas.


Hobbes: "What's the point of attaching a number to everything you do?"
Calvin: "If your numbers go up, it means you're having more fun."

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Sunday, December 4, 2011 3:24 PM
BullGuy's avatar

CoasterDemon said:
^Getting?

Oh man, don't forget Shakira! That's the best ride in the park :) Better?

I heard Kumba isn't too bad either.

Gwazi is hands down the worst operations I've ever encountered at a park on a consistent basis- and I have a lot of patience for poor operations. I didn't get the chance to check it with the new trains, so I don't know if they made an impact on that or not. Shame, cause it's among my favorite GCI coasters.

My only other suggestion is to ride Cheetah Hunt once if you must and focus on the other (better) rides that can be found at the park.


-Mark
Never Has Gravity Been So Uplifting.

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Monday, December 5, 2011 10:02 AM

I agree. Ride C'Hunt for the credit, then you can focus on the big dudes (Montu/Kumba/Sheikra) Scorpion is fun, but they consistently run one train. The mouse is braked to oblivion, and the wood.... :/

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Monday, December 5, 2011 9:49 PM

I might be going to Busch Gardens next year and Scorpion is my biggest concern, since if the lift is anything like Laser (incredibly slow) and with only 20 seats per train, even a wait of a few trains could be a while so getting multiple rides is probably out of the question.

I still need all the credits except Cheetah Chase (I rode it the coaster when it was at Williamsburg) since the last and only time I was there was 1996 and didn't ride a single coaster since every coaster they had included inversions and at the time, I wasn't up to that.

Last edited by YoshiFan, Monday, December 5, 2011 9:51 PM
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Tuesday, December 6, 2011 12:33 AM
CoasterDemon's avatar

The last time I was at Busch, multiple rides on Scorpion were possible (and even encouraged by the crew) with out leaving the station. It's easily my favorite ride there (haven't rode Cheetah Hunt yet)... Depending on the day, you might be in for a nice surprise. Many people pass up Scorpion for the 'big' coasters.

Last edited by CoasterDemon, Tuesday, December 6, 2011 12:35 AM
Billy
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Tuesday, December 6, 2011 12:58 AM
rollergator's avatar

Haven't been in quite a while, but I have noticed that the last couple years have seena resurgence in Scorpion ridership. When we went for Cheetah Hunt shortly after it opened, Kumba was a walk-on while Scorpion had a 10-15 minute wait (about 5 trains). Dispatches are fairly rapid without seatbelts. The bummer is not being able to select your seats - Laser fans will understand.

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Tuesday, December 6, 2011 1:57 AM

I guess I am so used to riding Laser (or was used to now) I didn't even think about Scorpion not having seatbelts. That should help a lot since dispatches took forever with 1 person checking seatbelts at Dorney.

That's too bad about not being able to choose a seat, getting the first row on Laser wasn't too difficult if you were willing to wait an extra train so you could be first in line, but getting the last row was almost impossible, I only managed to get it once in close to 70 rides.

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Tuesday, December 6, 2011 4:51 AM
CoasterDemon's avatar

You can always 'smile', talk to folks, and ask (if you have to) for whatever seat you want. Or do the old 'count the peeps' method. But the sweet way works best.


Billy
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