IOA, no line, no wait? bad idea

Sunday, April 22, 2001 5:52 PM
Has anyone been to IOA since they decided that this new "no line no wait" policy was a good idea. Because in my opinion, it isn't! I waited for a long time for a ride on the Hulk, and it just really annoyed me to see some people just jump on after I paid the same amount of money for my park admission. I was just upset to see that. I think that they should change it to "No line, no wait, no happy coustomers".
Sunday, April 22, 2001 6:36 PM
I work at IOA and I believe that it's a bad idea as well."No Lines, No Wait" I believe that this whole add campain is VERY misleading. Some guests are under the impression that we have somehow found a way to make all lines short all of the time for everyone. On a busy day with a one day ticket you might be able to get front of the line access for 2 or 3 rides and the rest of the time you wait in line for hours and hours. I constantly get yelled at by unhappy guests because they are verry unhappy with the whole express system (unless of course you stay at one of the Universal hotels in which you get back doord on all rides all of the time). We get all of this instead of a new attraction this year. On a positive note, it does work very well when the park is not busy.
Sunday, April 22, 2001 7:09 PM
I was at IOA in Feb., and took advantage of the single rider line. I think it works good in theory, but what happens in the height of summer when there are lines 7 days a week? There are not enough hotel rooms on site to really have thousands of people in the 'alternate Q' at any given time.

I just wonder what happens when you have a "hotel guest line", a "single rider line", a "locals on a day off line", a "I have 11 toes line", and on and on. I just would not want to be around when tempers flare after a long wait, and those people who are in the "I paid full ****ing price line", and some little nermal looking dude is strutting past the loading area swinging his hotel keys up in the air as guy with his wife and 4 kids who are all stoked up after paying full price to get in, and he just realized he will only get on like 3 rides.

I just think there has to be a sense of diplomatic honesty to the people on vacation can't get in to the hotel(s), yet want to maximize their vavcation action. This whole gig will come to ahead in parks with hotels at IAAPA in 2002 or 2003. I am certain that parks like Cedar Point, Hersheypark, Morey's Piers, and Knott's Berry Farm, who all operate several hotels in the area of their operations, will all look into this policy as a added incentive to stay at thier owned/operated properties.

This could be a great package deal, or it could backfire into a guest nightmare.
Monday, April 23, 2001 5:33 AM
Great take above,
I get confused by all the line options myself.

The single rider queue is great, I agree with it. People who do this walk thru the "chicken out" walkway of the queue. On Hulk, you can't get the front, but the wait time is reduced. You end up at the back of the coaster and are seated where ever the ride op tells you. On Doom Drop, you walk to the exit and put up a finger and on you go, noone is pissed because that spot was open anyway (3 people) and you just filled the last spot.
On Drop Zone at PKI, they don't officially have a single rider queue, but the ride op will put up a finger if 1 seat is left. But the queue isn't designed for it, so you gotta jump over bars to get there in time.

I went to IOA in February and they were not using the system because they said the lines we're not long enough.
Going again this weekend, we'll see what happens, because I have multi day tickets.

Yeah, I waiting for Aerosmiths RRC, they ran out of fast pass tickets, so I had to wait, and then watched others go straight into the building, and I was a little pissed. So I can see tempers flaring when a dude has impatient kids and watches other walk on by.

Monday, April 23, 2001 8:20 AM
Well in late March when I went to IOA the fastpass-ripoff system was in place. My sister didnt even want to attempt to use it (we had 2-day passes) so I dont know how it feels from a benefit standpoint.

From a business standpoint, it does seem like a good idea to try and reward those who are giving you the most money (e.g. multiday ticketholders and hotel guests). This is America, money talks and boy-cow manure walks.

From a "standby line only" patron point of view, I didnt have too much trouble with it. The two queues are mostly separated so you dont getting a lot of "fastpass envy" in the regular line. Now what I think is bogus about the system is that the passes run out so early. On a day when the park closed @ 7pm, virtually evey pass was "sold out" by like 2pm. And if it's true that you must use a pass before you can get another one (or two passes in 3hrs or some nonsense) if you get stuck with a late time, you may only get 1 or 2 passes in an entire day. I think that is pretty crappy. But anyway, I think that IOA is still small enough that you can hit all the rides you want in a single day anyway, without express passes; especially if you use the "single riders" lines (GREAT IDEA, all parks should have these).

BTW: Even though it has recently been expanded to on-site guests, you could always pay for "express access" to the attractions @ USF/IOA. Just take one of the VIP tours (it'll cost ya though ;))
Monday, April 23, 2001 10:46 AM
I can see both sides of the coin on this one.

My wife and I have stayed at what was at that time the only Universal Property, Portofino Bay. We enjoyed the perks available to property guests.

I am sure there will aspects which will be looked at and tinkered with.

Most for-profit entities try different things to enhance the bottom-line. Some work and some don't.

I suppose in my earlier days, I would look at it differently. Maybe "the man" was tryin to put one over on me for not being able to afford what others can.

The odd part to IOA, is my wife and I had considered the VIP tour, but then we realized we wouldn't be able to ride the coasters and rides as much as we like to. So, we were probably not the intended target for that specific marketing tool.

You can bet, the bottom-line is the bottom-line. If profits are hurt or increased due to the current promotions, then things will be adjusted.

Another side-possibility to this, is often within an industry, other companies will watch and see how one company is doing, and then possibly pick-up with what they were doing with a slight twist.

You can see this already at Paramount parks, Cedar Point, etc. PKI has the goldpass program. Rerides on tuesdays, park open one hour early on certain days, choice parking, choice seating, etc.

Cedar Point has the Joe program with similar attributes.

You can bet this will be more the norm if the bottom-line is positively impacted.

IOA could go either way. They may adopt something closer to Disney, PKI, etc. and open the park early only vs. other normal operating ride time perks.

They are attempting to get their second resort up and running, and are using different avenues to get that going. They have a third one which will go online in the not so distant future.

Bringing that particular property to 3 resorts, with quite a few guests spending $175-300/night.

To maximize occupancy, they will probably try different target groups.

Having said all of that. When you see others getting what appears to be a "free ride" ahead of you. Just take it in stride. Enjoy the park for the reasons you went there. If you are displeased. Make note of it at guest relations and send the park GM a letter, in a positive light that is.

Monday, April 23, 2001 11:56 AM
Wait a sec...I don't get it. I made a post a while ago about how I hated the Disney Fastpass system, and most of the responses were saying that I just don't know how to use it right. Most of the people seemed to like it.

I hope that people's opinions change, and they get rid of the system at both parks.

I can understand why IOA is following Disney, though, since it's so competetive.
Monday, April 23, 2001 2:46 PM
Finally, someone else hates this system.
I would like to tell you about my experience on JP River Adventure, and maybe you will understand why it is such a horribly executed plan.

So we get in line for JP and the clock says about 45 min wait. At first the line is moving pretty well. Then all of a sudden, a rush of Express Passers begins to fill up their express line. Now, for some reason, we are halfway through the line, and it has already been 45 minutes. When I finally get in view of the loading dock, it all becomes clear. I watch as instead of allowing, say, 2 rows on each boat to the expressers, they genious Ride Ops are filling 2 whole boats with expressers, then MOST of the third boat with normal people. This outraged me, and the entire que. It appeared that the que was about to execute a cou de ta:). When question, the ride ops simply responded, "Well, you know, we have to let the express people on first" in their fake cheery sort of way, and then ignored anything else we said to them. I was planning on writing a long letter to IOA complaining about this, but never got around to it.

So yes... no line, no wait. Bad Idea

I'd Rather Be Riding Rollercoasters *** This post was edited by FloridaCoasterRider on 4/23/2001. ***
Monday, April 23, 2001 4:09 PM
TO put it bluntly, I think it sucks. I mean, I love the park and all and will keep going, but it makes my wait for the rides longer if I don't take advantage of it. I have once. FOr the Doom Tower when the line was (unbelievably) 90 minutes, but they only had two times left and we had to leave by then. The lines move slower becasue they hold up the "real" line to let the people with the passes on. I do not like that idea one bit...we should protest...yeah right!

I think that the "single rider" idea was alright. But I also have a problem with that. They seat people in the back row. I am one of those people that will wait an extra few minutes to ride the back and when someone gets the seat I should have, I get tempered becasue I have been waiting in line for it and think they should too. Although the concept works at Busch Gardens Tampa. At BGT they do it right. They plug in the empty seats with the single riders. But, enough complaining. I love the parks, I just can't stand crowds of people.

But, I will be enjoying the parks this summer despite what happens. I just will be the one yelling at everyone to get out of my seat! :-)

Catch ya on the coasters!!!!!!!!!
Monday, April 23, 2001 4:12 PM
I think the single riders line was great but they should have just stuck with that and not gone with express.
Monday, April 23, 2001 6:02 PM
I think the system is not that great at all if you have a one day ticket. You get fastpass for 1 ride and the return time can be 3 or 4 hours from then. With a multi-day tik you can get 3 fastpasses at a time and allows for more flexibility. The key at IOA is go at opening and ride everything quickly. It only takes about 2 hours even on busy days. Dueling Dragons is never that long of a wait.

I have to admit that when the express program first came out I gathered up a bunch of other people's (and my own) multi day tickets and was able to get 16 total fastpasses at a time. Combined with going at park opening, I basically rode with my daughter all day till 5pm with a 5 minute average wait. We did Spiderman 3 times in about 20 minutes with the passes. They are about to link up the ticket machines with the fastpass machines so this will not work by summertime.

I guess sometimes you CAN beat the system!
Monday, April 23, 2001 11:21 PM
I also wish they had just stuck with what they did last summer with express. Last summer they just opened the park two hours early for multi day tickets holders and it worked great. Then you had express for about an hour then single rider lines on the more popular line don't know why they even bothered changing a system that worked fine to begin with.

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