Editorial: Paid line skipping a lesson opportunity for kids

Posted Friday, June 27, 2014 9:35 AM | Contributed by Jeff

From the piece:

Theme parks, smelling money, now make it easy for parents to pay more to avoid the sweaty lines that can bring out the worst in children. But what lessons do kids learn when some of them march past the others to board the rides without waiting?

Read more from The New York Times.

Saturday, July 12, 2014 5:30 PM
Lord Gonchar's avatar

Hmmm. Looks like the other video disappeared on us. Here's another upload. Same thing applies...watch 2:00 - 3:10. This one isn't cropped or pitch shifted though, so yay!


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Saturday, July 12, 2014 7:07 PM

"LINE CUTTERS GONNA GET CUT!"

I can't wait to use that one myself!

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Saturday, July 12, 2014 7:08 PM
Tekwardo's avatar

But what about the enthusiasts spending disposable income to go to parks that can't afford or "don't want to be forced" to skip the lines?! WHAT ABOUT THEM!!!

THINK OF THE ENTHUSIASTS!!


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Saturday, July 12, 2014 7:32 PM
LostKause's avatar

Okay. You guys are right. Pay-to-cut is not so bad. I actually enjoy it nowadays.

...Regular Show is awesome, but I like Adventure Time a lot more. AT is one of my favorite shows. Although it has a target audience of 7-to-12-years-olds, it is easy for adults to relate to because of a unique, new nostalgia. It seems like every character is based off of someone I know personally.

When I post the video of the yellow lemon-headed guy screaming "UNEXCEPTABLE," it is from that show. Love it!

Adventure Time and Regular Show sometimes come on withinin the same hour on Cartoon Network. They perfectly compliment each other.


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Monday, July 14, 2014 2:56 PM
Bobbie1951's avatar

I really don't approve of FOL access, much preferring an egalitarian system, but must admit that I have purchased Fast Lane or Flash Pass or whatever when it seemed to be the only reasonable option. Not that I could really afford it, but when visiting a crowded park I will probably never have the opportunity to visit again, I decided that I had to maximize the experience in order to justify the cost of the trip. I made the mistake of not purchasing Fast Lane at Kings Island a couple of years ago, and b/c I got only two rides as a result, it was a waste of a trip and unnecessary expenditure for airfare, car rental and motel. So for my recent visits to Canada's Wonderland and Six Flags Great America, I bit the bullet and went for FOL access. I agree with those who feel that by doing so they are negatively impacting those waiting in the regular ride queue. In fact I felt self-conscious about having FOL access, thinking that people must be looking at me and resenting me. As to the haves and have-nots, I think it's a mistake to assume that anyone with Fast Lane etc. has a lot of disposable income. For all we know, some of these people might visit a park only once or twice a year and could have been saving for months to afford the luxury of line-skipping.

One thing I won't do is buy FOL access at my home park, SFGAD. I go there so often that I know how to work the rides for a minimum wait. If I head straight for El Toro as soon as the park opens, I can easily get 7 to 10 consecutive rides, and then get to Kingda Ka before the queue reaches a 90-minute wait. And so forth and so on. My situation is somewhat different from most in that I'm stuck at the park from 10:30am to 9:30pm b/c I go on a NJ Transit bus. So even if I do hit a ride with an extended wait, I don't care, as I have nothing better to do anyway.


Bobbie

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Monday, July 14, 2014 3:37 PM
slithernoggin's avatar

On the occasions when I find myself waiting on line, and I see people who purchased FOL access being let in, I don't feel resentful at all.

Why would I? I got what I paid for; they got what they paid for.


Life is something that happens when you can't get to sleep.
--Fran Lebowitz

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Wednesday, July 16, 2014 4:08 PM
janfrederick's avatar

I'm going to get my enthusiast card pulled for this one. I bought a Flashpass for Magic Mountain when I bought my tickets online; I wanted to be able to tackle as many as I could with our Son now that he could finally ride all the big boys. I got in line to get the Q-bot and discovered that my tier did not cover X-2 (which was the main reason for getting it). So I upgraded to the next level and added X2 for an additional fee.

No biggie right? It's just that I anticipated much longer lines for a summer's day. But the park was dead. Most everything was a 5-10 minute wait. And when we finally got over to X2 at the end of the day, it was only a 30 minute wait anyway.

I don't suppose they would ever consider adding a wait time list in front of the Flashpass office. :)

Would I get Flashpass again? Sure, but I'd buy it at the park after getting a feel for the crowds. And only for Magic Mountain because it is a fairly long ride for us (160 miles via the most heavily used freeway in the world--5 hours to get home).

But aside from wasting my money, we had an epic day. I'll write up a trip report soon.


"I go out at 3 o' clock for a quart of milk and come home to my son treating his body like an amusement park!" - Estelle Costanza
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Wednesday, July 16, 2014 4:18 PM
slithernoggin's avatar

I've never bought a FOL pass, but my take away from this discussion: don't buy it until you've been in the park and seen what the crowds are like.


Life is something that happens when you can't get to sleep.
--Fran Lebowitz

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Wednesday, July 16, 2014 5:59 PM

Here is a different view. My brother and I am in our mid 50's. I have lower back and foot pain if I stand more than about 30 minutes. My brother is older and about 325+ pounds and has issues standing for a long time. We both went to SFGA in Chicago on July the 3rd. We got there at the opening of the park. I pre bought the platinum Q-bot for the first time knowing that we would not have to stand long and could double ride most coasters. I went to Goliath first. The lane was already at the 3 hour mark. I waited a total of 15 minutes to grab the back seat with the Flash Pass. The bottom line is. We rode 22 roller coasters that day. Most 4 times. There is no way in hell we would have rode that many without the Flash Pass. Do I feel guilty for going before others without the pass? Hell no I don't. It was worth it for the less physical pain we both saved ourselves, and had an awesome time all day. I am far from rich and only make $26,000 a year. My brother is retired. It was well worth it for us. We will probably be going to SFMM over Christmas and will be doing the same.

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Wednesday, July 16, 2014 8:10 PM
Jeff's avatar

Wait, so these services aren't a conspiracy to keep people in your income bracket down and made to feel inferior?


Jeff - Editor - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog - Silly Nonsense

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Wednesday, July 16, 2014 8:21 PM
sws's avatar

The burning questions on everyone's mind is whether your brother was able to fit into the seats of Goliath and which Premier rides you decided to take home with you?

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Wednesday, July 16, 2014 9:08 PM
Tekwardo's avatar

I didn't realize Great America had 22 coasters...


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Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened.

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Wednesday, July 16, 2014 9:10 PM
Tekwardo's avatar

On a side note, don't waste money on buying a Flashpass at SFMM in December.

I was there on a Monday in December and the park was dead to the point that there were more workers than customers. Do go on a weekday.

And yes, school was out the day I went.


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Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened.

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