Posted Thursday, December 30, 2010 12:07 PM | Contributed by PhantomTails
Knott's Berry Farm has quietly begun offering a fee-based, line-cutting pass for some of its most popular roller coasters and thrill rides. The $40 Hate to Wait front-of-line pass get you bypass access one time for eight specific rides.
Read more from The LA Times.
I'm fine with the Fastpasses and so forth that are available to all, but I hate the "pay for special treatment" programs. It is a money grab by the parks and is a disservice to patrons that pay the regular admission price.
OOoohhh Herreee we goooooo!!! another ranty subject is a commin! ;-)
We have come full circle. Pre early 1970's the pay-one-price was a foreign concept. Now they are going to all these line-cut systems that are nothing more than a different version of the E-ticket, etc. I have no complaints. Pay for a game or concert and you are charged different pricing depending on seat location (experience), etc. When is the last time somebody complained that the Zipper takes more tickets than the slide? I think complaints about these systems are more us being spoiled than economic reality. I'm surprised this stuff ever went away. Cool thing is now, for a price, we can have an experience that was not available the last 3-4 decades at most parks.
It would only be a disservice (IMO obviously) if it weren't available to everyone.
One of these days, Standby lines are going to be just that, Standby. The rest of the people in the park will have paid a premium to ride when they want, and those that don't will be on Standby. That it hasn't already happened yet is beyond me, but it is coming.
Or should that be 'profit'? ;)
I'd love to say "I told you so" but it been so obviously heading towards this for so long now that I feel bad pretending it took some great insight to say what I've been saying for the past 10 years around here.
Gonch-The Queue Messiah.
What I find interesting is that it's not an all day unlimited thing, but a one time use only on the specified rides. Last year I picked up a similar thing at BGW and loved it. The unlimited use plan I thought was well worth the extra cost, especially on Big Bad Wolf closing weekend, and that was similarly priced. A one time use model...consider me disinterested. Is a set of one-time-only-per-ride line jumps really worth $40? I guess it all depends if you've really got to ride the Boomerang right now.
I'm with Wahoo Skipper - this screams money grab as there's no significant return on the investment IMHO. Personally, I'd rather spend the $40 on a bunch of boysenberry <insert favorite dessert or drink here> and just wait it out.
I also have to wonder as it is so "low tech" how long before the counterfeiter's start making their way into this franchise.
Is a set of one-time-only-per-ride line jumps really worth $40?
It is worth it in order to not make the people who do not purchase it miserable all day. I love the high price. I don't want everyone to be able to afford it. Not even me, sometimes.
If it's considered expensive, or "not worth it", then it will be a better experience for those who don't get it. I like this balance much better. :)
And I have changed my mind over the years about pay-to-cut BECAUSE of the exclusivity of some of these systems. I won the Kings Island VIP Coasting for Kids prize last year. I'm pretty sure that I was the only person in the park going up the exits to ride that day. That was a great experience. If it had been 10 - 20% of the park patrons cutting in front of everyone else, I would have been against it, no matter which side I was on.
This is a money grab, just like it is at all the other parks. They call it a "service", but seriously, it's just that they are allowing the rules to be broken for those who pay. There is no "service" involved in pay-to-cut, with the exception of VIP, where one has a guide.Last edited by LostKause, Friday, December 31, 2010 1:52 AM
People will pay for it, just like the patron who chooses to pay for a 3.00 soda, a 7.00 beer, and so on, and so on. If there is a viable market for it, why not?
I think Tim pointed out a crucial point; a person who has this won't be just running around the park all day riding at will...they will use it strategically.
I think there are plenty of people (namely those who don't visit a park as many as some of us do) who will find value in it. If you only get one shot a year at visiting CP, you may find value there.
You can call it a money grab if you want, but don't stop there. The t-shirts in the gift shop are a money grab, the parking fee is a money grab, the $4 Pepsi is a money grab, the foot massagers are a money grab. It's a business, and the purpose of it is to grab your money. Your job as a consumer is to get the most for the amount of money grabbed.
Queue the "they'll piss off enough customers that they'll have to repeal it" refrain.
Don't know if your 'queue' in place of 'cue' was intentional, but I like it. :)
(Or maybe you meant there would be people lining up to complain... do they sell FOL passes for that? ;))Last edited by birdhombre, Friday, December 31, 2010 9:09 AM
This is a money grab, just like it is at all the other parks. They call it a "service", but seriously, it's just that they are allowing the rules to be broken for those who pay.
kpjb touched on the money grab bit, but I wanted to point out that the are no rules being broken. The park sets the rules, and in this case I'm sure you're referring to the 'Line jumpers will be ejected' rule most parks have, but if you have a line cutting pass you're not breaking the rules. In grade school it's against the rules to be wandering the halls during class, but if I get a hall pass it's ok. Is getting a hall pass breaking the rules?
**waits for 'But you don't pay for a hall pass' retort**
Screw it all... I'm getting a note from my head shrinker that I have ADHD and cannot wait in line.
Morally, I think I have more of a right than someone who has more money than me ;)
I love it, Billy. I'm going to ask my Doc for that too. I wonder if the parks will honor that?
I'm not going to get into the debate as much this time, because we eventually start to talk in circles. I have said that if it's going to be considered a necessary evil, I am all for expensive one-time-use passes. Strongly limiting how many people use it is the key to making it work well, and not severely messing up the normal flow of the park experience.
Strongly limiting how many people use it is the key to making it work well, and not severely messing up the normal flow of the park experience.
It still seems like the change is the problem. It's not messing up the normal flow, it is the new normal. The old rules don't apply. Just like when the industry shifted from pay-per-ride to pay-one-price. It's shifting again.
My kids already don't know a theme park experience where there aren't multiple levels of ride access. The status quo has already changed for a generation.
At this point you're the stereotypical grumpy old fart complaining about back when things were better. ;)
^DEVO was right ;)
I'll be a grumpy of fart (and continue farting, I heart farts). Just because it's the new 'thing' doesn't mean its cool or correct.
It's like texting someone to tell them 'excuse me' trying to get through an isle at the grocery store, just kinda dumb.
Just because it's the new 'thing' doesn't mean its cool or correct.
Likewise, just because it's different doesn't mean it sucks or it's wrong.
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