Posted Tuesday, July 20, 2004 10:04 AM | Contributed by Impulse-ive
Queue management has become common place at most major US theme parks. The systems range from the free and low-tech hand stamps at Cedar Point to the electronic pager-like Q-bot for an extra fee at some Six Flags parks.
Read more from AP via CNN.
By using systems such as fastlane it gives them an excuse to run rides with only one train & make the lines much longer(& slower) so as to sway a guests choice to use the line jumping system....however it also can & has annoyed guests to the point that they are being driven away from the desire to visit the park again.
They are also missing out on a good chance to increase guest per capita spending,SF doesn't get it that when guests are stuck in a two hour queue for a given ride that they aren't out on the midways shopping for gifts or eating lunch & dinner,which is costing the parks in question several opportunities to increase their overall daily profits.
Remember the prime falacy of virtual queueing, you AREN'T adding capacity, at the end of the day the ride will have carried the same number of people as it would ahve without the virtual queue, the only difference is the allocation of seats, by allowing a virtual queue participant to ride immediately, or to defer their wait while they ride something else gives them more rides in the day than those who don't particpate.
I think it's theoretically FEASIBLE to keep the capacity where it WAS before the systems, but only theoretically....and it requires AT LEAST one more staff person to do even that much. Otherwise, capacity is DESTINED to suffer, and suffer considerably, from the multiple-loading situations that most parks seem to favor (virtualy queue, THEN regular queue, adds a minimum of 15-20 seconds per dispatch, when the exit ramp is used as a "loading zone").
Can queue management work? Sure! Has it been shown to work effectively? Mostly only at Disney, IMO...
I'd like to go *on record* as saying that in general, the practice should be labeled "queue mismanagement"...;)
*** This post was edited by rollergator 7/20/2004 12:01:35 PM ***
Same reason that Six Flags waterparks close their wave pools for 15 minutes every hour. It has nothing to do with safety, and everything to do with getting guests back on deck and buying that additional Coke. It's a very wise thing for the parks to do and there have been various economic models that fully support these practices.
Next time you are waiting for your fast pass time to come, notice the ice cream cone you will probably have in your hand.
Disneyland, where the Fast Pass was invented, is now significantly scaling back the system because the promised increases in per-cap sales didn't materialize, and instead the program caused additional infrastructure problems.
Six Flags waterparks closing the wave pools for fifteen minutes per hour has nothing to do with safety OR per-caps. Customers in the wave pool have no cash and therefore won't buy another Coke. If it is hot, they will leave the wave pool and head straight for the lazy river. Ever see a lazy river overflow from displacement? Happens at Wyandot Lake on a hot, busy day when the wave pool closes. No, the Six Flags policy is rooted in a pre-Six Flags policy at ONE of their parks which may have been mandated by the State of ** as a response to a drowning incident before Premier Parks even bought the park. Six Flags is very much into policy standardization, which is why I recently watched coaster operators giving multi-train hand-signals to each other on a single-train hand-operated ride.
--Dave Althoff, Jr.
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