Park at capacity - 10/19/19

Sunday, October 20, 2019 12:27 PM

I personally know many families that have purchased Gold Passes who have never been season pass holders before, and honestly, if you are look at the numbers, it isn't hard to see why they did it. It pays for itself in like 1.25 visits. This is the park's fault so selling so many so cheap. I can't blame anyone for purchasing them.

Anyway, these people used to go once a year (if that), and they were very liberal with their in-park spending because it was an infrequent thing. I'm talking lunch and maybe dinner for the entire family, souvenirs, etc. Likely $100-$200 in additional revenue from them, maybe even $500+ if you start adding in Fast Pass since it's a rare thing, etc. Whenever I go to a destination park like Disney, I know I have the same mentality.

However, that equation starts to change when you go all the time. You start adding up how much you could save by eating in the picnic area or leaving for lunch, you obviously don't need souvenirs each time you go, and you definitely do not need Fast Passes since you can just come another time, etc. I would venture a guess that those that pay daily admission have a much higher in-park spend than those that have Gold Passes.

I would assume that CP makes money on the season pass holders by those who buy them but don't go that frequently. Based on the crowds this year, that isn't really happening with the Gold Pass. For those "once a year families", I'm concerned that Cedar Point has trading in a good amount of one-time revenue for less overall revenue, plus those families are in the park many more times throughout the year, diluting the experience for others.

The attendance numbers will be record setting, no doubt , but I'll be curious to see the per-guest spend. It wouldn't surprise me to see it go down quite a bit.

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Sunday, October 20, 2019 12:56 PM
GL2CP's avatar

A packed midway is good from the parks pov. Not their fault everyone wants to come at the same time. They had to do what they had to do. How else could they manage if there is physically no more parking? It’s few days a year so I’m sure they’re not too worried overall. Maybe just a little.


First ride; Magnum 1994

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Sunday, October 20, 2019 1:29 PM
Cargo Shorts's avatar

Will be interesting how today(Sunday) shakes out. From the webcams it looks busy, with one very long line out of the pretzel hut vs. 3 long lines yesterday. Also queue-times reporting some very hefty waits: Blue Streak 30, Gemini 40, ID 45. Not nearly as bad as yesterday (yet).

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Sunday, October 20, 2019 2:22 PM
1000 years of force's avatar

0g, WDW closes the three major parks periodically because of capacity issues. In the 80's and 90's around the major holidays MK and EPCOT would be closed by noon or so around the end of year holidays. I was there last year a couple of days post Dec. 25 and MK closed by 1PM, EPCOT by 2pm and Studios shortly thereafter.

So, it happens.

The guest experience is, quite frankly, very awful at those times. We went in with modest expectations and did all the things we wanted to do (even same-day Ohana dinner) and GTFO...

I expect that some suppositions will have to be tempered after the last few seasons crowding on Saturdays in October. I mean, they are going to be crowded. Experience (hindsight?) says to plan to go a different day, or have very modest expectations about what you are going to get to do.

It will be interesting to see if GP sales this year really packs-em-in next season. I suspect that it won't be a whole bunch different than it has been. Last year is was assuredly more crowded on some days than this year. GP gives good cannon fodder to the people who love to be grumpy that it has "ruined everything", but in reality I suspect that the people in the know at CF have it carefully planned to strike a balance between attendance figures, per-caps, and satisfaction.

Isn't CP the last park in the system to get GP?? Not sure.

I guess that all speculation aside, next season we'll know for certain.

Last edited by 1000 years of force, Sunday, October 20, 2019 2:24 PM

"Your persiflage does not amuse. " - Ralph (from Around the world in 80 days)

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Sunday, October 20, 2019 5:57 PM
Rusty's avatar

kylepark said:

I haven't visited the Sandusky Mall in years, but could that property be put to better use for such a project? Considering the many shopping malls being demolished all over the country, can SM be repurposed into a transportation hub? Cedar Point's main parking lot should remain a parking lot. However, during peak season, those visitors driving to the park (or any other place in the area) later in the day would use an efficiently run transportation system.

I don't see that happening. While the SM has taken a hit over the past few years+ just like every other shopping mall has, it still has a fairly strong shopping base. I have seen many other shopping malls in far worse condition and with many more vacant storefronts. The Sandusky Mall is also already under a plan for renovation and repurposing that is unlikely to include anything of the sort you are proposing. -- Especially when you consider that a 'local transportation hub' is also in the works at a completely different location in town, but this is not a transportation hub that would address the few days in October where CP puts stress on the infrastructure for a few hours.


Proud to have fathered a second generation coaster enthusiast destined to keep me young at heart and riding coasters with a willing partner into my golden years!

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Sunday, October 20, 2019 6:02 PM
Rusty's avatar

Just for fun, go to Zillow and search for a three bedroom house in Huron and then one in Sandusky... Not Perkins, not Venice Twp or Bayview. Sandusky. I'll wait. There are much, much worse things to be than a bedroom community.

I own and live in one of those Sandusky 3 bedroom houses and would sell it in a heartbeat to anyone who offered me the average asking price for the same 3 bedroom house in Huron.


Proud to have fathered a second generation coaster enthusiast destined to keep me young at heart and riding coasters with a willing partner into my golden years!

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Sunday, October 20, 2019 7:30 PM

I get the impression that Cedar Point could occupy and burn down Sandusky City hall and have Tony Clark state that the site would be used for future expansion projects and people on this site would find a way to justify and defend them.


"Forgiveness is almost always easier to obtain than permission."

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Sunday, October 20, 2019 7:40 PM
PyroKinesis09's avatar

You sound like an ignoramus.

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Sunday, October 20, 2019 7:46 PM
Jeff's avatar

I guess the disciple lost his faith.


Jeff - Advocate of Great Great Tunnels™ - Co-Publisher - PointBuzz - CoasterBuzz - Blog - Music

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Sunday, October 20, 2019 8:28 PM
noggin's avatar

Staaber said:

They’ve lost it all they care about is $$$$ they could care less if you get in or even have a good time.

I know it's shocking that a business cares about the $$$$.

And of course they care about whether guests have a good time; repeat guests are an excellent revenue source.


I'm a Marxist, of the Groucho sort.

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Sunday, October 20, 2019 9:08 PM
operative_me's avatar

Dear Lord, it's not even off-season yet...


-Craig
Lifetime Laps on Woodstock Express: 0

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Monday, October 21, 2019 12:12 AM
Joe E's avatar

GL2CP said:
Not their fault everyone wants to come at the same time..

This is true, but they could have some control of the crowd level by dynamic pricing the gate and tiered pass levels with the more expensive passes having less blackout dates. Disney does this and they make a killing on high demand days, but are still able to encourage visits and fill the park on low demand days.

There needs to be no additional incentive to get people to come out for Saturday Halloweekend. It’s pretty obvious with this blunder that their price could have been much higher based on the demand. Uber, sporting events, and other parks are dynamically priced, and why CP never really tried is an odd decision to me.

The gold pass pretty much means they’ve lost control of the gate for next year.
There isn’t much way to limit crowds for high demand days.


Gemini 100- 6/11/01

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Monday, October 21, 2019 7:27 AM

Thabto said:

I would be pretty happy if I drove all the way up to Sandusky and only went to TP.

I guess that is what makes me different from lots of people. If I go to CP I go to ride rides. Period.

Why would I want to drive 2 hours to go to a bar? I can go to a bar or people watch or pretty much do everything else just a few miles from my house. But you know the one thing that I cannot do just a few miles from my house? Ride rides.

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Monday, October 21, 2019 8:39 AM
Cargo Shorts's avatar

I suspect Thabto was being somewhat flip but sure that works great if one is a bachelor. Taking your kids to a bar and getting hammered 2 hours or more from home is not going to get you any parenting of the year awards. Even if one is old enough to be the DD. :)

Forbidden Frontier does give my kids something to do other than rides, but the shows are big nope, so yeah we are there for the rides. Period.

However coming prepared with a Plan B, in case of a sudden change in weather, water main break or the such is something I try to do. Kalahari has a Black Friday sale every year so I keep 4 of those tickets in my glove box and next summer I will make sure we pack beach attire and accessories in case we hit a “gold pass bring a friend super cheap day” I didn’t pick up on. (Never go to a SIX park on bring a friend free days)

I suspect not much is going to change drastically weekdays next summer, but the weekends will likely be more crowded.

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Monday, October 21, 2019 9:02 AM

Also, the 3+ hour wait for Steel Vengeance and 2.5 hours for most of the other big hitters seem to indicate that many people are still there for rides. I get people saying Saturdays during Halloweekends are always busy. But typically, the Fridays and the Sundays have not followed suit. That has definitely changed this year. Although it wasn't as bad as Saturday, the parking lot was full again yesterday.

Joe E is right. They've lost control of the gate for next season. They also gave away the gate for these fall Saturdays when the place was already full. I've said it before, but a CP pass priced that low and including waterpark and parking should have had black out days - like all Saturdays in July through the end of the season. Buy the next tier up if that's not okay. They sort of have done dynamic pricing with single day tickets by having a very high MSRP price and then discounting heavily in May/June. I do like the idea of just putting a different price on the calendar per day and stop the games, but according to marketing people, that would probably not be as enticing to people.


-Matt

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Monday, October 21, 2019 9:50 AM

noggin said:

Staaber said:

They’ve lost it all they care about is $$$$ they could care less if you get in or even have a good time.

I know it's shocking that a business cares about the $$$$.

And of course they care about whether guests have a good time; repeat guests are an excellent revenue source.

I hear ya, but repeat's like myself and quit a few others I've seen on other social media sites are going to be lost, I read quit a few times "I'm a platinum member and I'm not renewing after this year". They don't have the staff to handle crowds like this. I mean come on 1-1/2 hour wait to get food at Chic-Fila....ridiculous. They won't point the power tower camera at the parking lot so the people like myself could see how crowded the park is an opt not to go. But no they have to point it downward to "hide" how crowded it is and hope that other season pass members will come anyway. I know when they used to have the camera pointed at the parking lot I would check and if it were full I'd stay home. Let others who might have paid for the day enjoy the park.

I'd be really pissed off if I drove 2+ hours to get to the park to find out the park is not letting anyone else in. "Come back tomorrow or next weekend" that's a BS statement to make. Then not to offer refunds is even more of an insult.

Seems like over the pasty few years the customer service is getting worse.

They created a big issue with this Gold Pass. I will agree with others who state that Halloweekends is buys but I have NEVER seen the park that busy except for maybe a few years back on Columbus Day Sunday.

One last time I have noticed all season is the ride crews. Cedar Points suck compared to Kings Island. At KI they get you on and off the ride in a pretty good pace. I've noticed that CP's crews are slow, almost like they don't know what they are doing. That's just my observation....I know Kings Island earlier this year posted how proud they are to have great turn around time on getting people on and off rides. And no you can't ignore safety, but there is a pretty big difference I've been noticing.

That's my take anyway.

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Monday, October 21, 2019 10:22 AM

For me, the park has lost its way a bit. I don’t enjoy going as I used to and have decided to skip on any season pass for next year for many reasons already stated previously.

We were there almost weekly for many years, pass holders as long as I can remember. I’m only an hour away. Now the past two years I didn’t even go enough to justify the price of my pass.

I for one, would have not been upset one bit if Six Flags took ownership... Which is crazy to say, but I think I would have more hope for a better experience in the coming years over the direction it is going now.

Last edited by Invertalon, Monday, October 21, 2019 10:23 AM
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Monday, October 21, 2019 10:46 AM

I just cancelled our reservations for Sat. at The Breakers. No way in hell do I want to potentially deal with a cluster**** like that.

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Monday, October 21, 2019 12:03 PM

Where Cedar Point screwed up with the Gold Pass is that they allowed multiple entries into Cedar Point in 2019 for new pass holders purchasing the 2020 Gold Pass. In the past they would only allow you to come in once for the current season.

It is obvious that Cedar Point oversold the park with a pass that was way to cheap. This is the same thing that happened to Six Flags Ohio when back in 2001 they offered the family (4) pack of season passes for $ 79.95. History is repeating itself here. Roads are jammed and people are upset.

Everyone is upset, the GP are upset, the Enthusiasts are upset, no one is happy. In the end, the corporate greed of selling passes way too cheap will hurt.

This has been going on for about 3 weekends now and with Saturday's forecast looks to be much the same next weekend.

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Monday, October 21, 2019 12:32 PM

Don't forget to tack on the "bring a friend free" and complimentary fastlane plus offers for renewals... You know, to make matters worse during the busiest time of year when the park can't even manage the organic growth they have.

Last edited by Invertalon, Monday, October 21, 2019 12:38 PM
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