I recently renewed my SF pass online and when I went to pay I was mad that there was NO standard U.S. mail shipping option. The cheapest shipping they had was $11 so I took that. The pass got here in two days. I was just wondering if someone else encountered this problem.
This is probably to allow tracking and verifying receipt of shipments of Season Pass Vouchers.
One of the most notorious problems in a park's GR department at the beginnin of the season is "I've lost / never received my Season Pass voucher." While the vouchers are serialized, there's no cross-match between voucher's original purchaser's name and the name used at the time of redemption. And there is a lot of suspected funny business about people "loosing" their vouchers (hey, a cheap way to get 2 for the price of 1).
Standard mail doesn't verify receipt without a significant surcharge for "return receipt requested," while most overnight delivery allows online tracking and verification - so SF can verify receipt if required, putting the ownership of the passes in the customer's hands.
I work in a similar environment to this situation, and whenever I had to send out "comps" in the mail, I'd bet about 60-70% of the people called me to say they never got them. That's why we implemented the "You-pick-these-up-in-person" policy, unless they feel like paying for UPS delivery, which kind of voids the "comp" part. People will take advantage of anything these days.
I purchased the "Renew You '03 pass" option. I bought the pass online, and had them ship it to me using my '03 pass pic. I got them and they are completely ready for use in 2004, no waiting. That works out great seeing as how EVERYONE decides to get their pass processed on the one day that i go. lol. I also bought an '04 parking pass. I got a voucher for it that says to pick it up at the parks "Will Call" window. Once again, no waits. The buying / renewing option online seems to be the best thing "consumer wise" that Six Flags has done in a long while.
Why aren't they doing the stickers again? Last year when I renewed, they just sent a 2003 sticker to slap on the 2002 pass.
And yes, people last year were complaining about $8 shipping for a tiny little sticker. I think it's going to become a new offseason ritual.
Since I did that online renewal last year, I'm wondering if they send a pass or not being as the newest pic they have of me is from 2002. Probably not that big of deal but it leads me to another "quirk" in the SF pass system:
How old can a pic be before they'll want to take a new one?
Assume for a second that a 2 year old pic is not accpetable and I need to reprocess. My pass is from SFWOA. SF passes end with the calendar year (not the park season year like Cedar Fair's) - say I plan on hitting the west coast during the winter. (for arguments sake we'll say Feb 2004). Is SFWOA open year round for pass processing? If not, I'm screwed with a west coast trip because SF couldn't accomadate my pass renewal needs. Now I'm forced to buy a pass on the west coast which screws up my flow when time to renew for 2005.
Of course, if they can use my 2002 pic or all SF parks are open for processing year round, then this doesn't apply.
*** Edited 12/19/2003 7:43:37 PM UTC by Lord Gonchar***
What stinks is that for SFGAm, if you didn't get a new pass last year, they don't have your photo on file to issue you a new pass by mail. To make things worse, you can't the deal that they have for the discounted renewal if you have to buy a "new" pass. On top of _that_ to order a new pass online, you must buy two!
SFA offers a season parking pass for $35.00 for one car (at least that's what it was last year). $11 does seem a little steep, and I'm sure it includes some kind of processing fee also, but I can understand wanting to track the package. Jan 4th is the cutoff date for SFA, if you want it for $49.99.
After taxes you're looking at around 55 bucks for an SFA season pass,that's about 10 dollars less than it cost me for my 03 pass.
I-Fan:since when did the parking fee increase to $11.00? if I'm not mistaken it was still $9.00 during 03...then again it doesn't really matter because we just get a parking pass for the season each year.
By the way, would any of you like to sign up for my CD club? You get 12 free CD's plus shipping, so when you total that up, it comes to about $1,384.57.
Six Flags does have the cheapest renewal prices, as we have stated. I found it cheaper for me last year to renew my SFKK pass, pay the $11 to ship it and use it at other parks up here rather than drive from Columbus Ohio to Louisville.
I bought a SFKK pass years ago since they usually open first in the season around here if your wondering why someone from Columbus would indeed HAVE a SFKK pass in the first place.
The shipping and handling charges for SF season passes this year are a total rip off and a joke. $11 to send a small piece of plastic via UPS???? What crack-baby deal did SF make with UPS? For $11 I could send a box filled with computer manuals overnight!
I could understand paying that much if I wanted the pass to be shipped to me overnight, but lord almighty, even the USPS can send something to you TRACKED and via PRIORITY MAIL for about $4.
It's a heck of a lot cheaper than driving from Michigan to Louisville. I hold a SFKK season pass as well, and I doubt I'll go anywhere near Kentucky this year with no SRM. But I'll use the pass at at least 4 other Six Flags parks, with the first one of the season being SFGAm. Season passes there are $70.00 vs. $40.00 at SFKK.
Pricing rule #1: don't charge what it costs plus a profit margin. Charge as much as people will pay. It's silly to say "shipping doesn't cost $11; what a rip-off!" if people think that having it shipped is worth $11 to save them the drive.
Pricing rule #2: If you can't get more than what it costs plus a profit margin, find a new line of business.