Christmas 2021: Christmas Markets

jon81uk

TS Member
It certainly is cheap compared to the multiple quid every couple of minutes that can be charged. It is definitely a very profitable endeavour.

but finding enough cast to play the role is likely still the harder part.
I think AT look it as better having four hotels full of very happy guests paying a high price for a pretty good product. Try and offer a bigger event and get it wrong and people won’t come back.
 

NuttySquirrel

TS Member
but finding enough cast to play the role is likely still the harder part.
I think AT look it as better having four hotels full of very happy guests paying a high price for a pretty good product. Try and offer a bigger event and get it wrong and people won’t come back.

Also there's the fact that reserving the Santa experience for hotel guests only makes it more exclusive, so those who've paid for the hotel package feel they're getting a unique experience that's not available to all and sundry. If you offer every experience to everyone, including day guests, then there's less perceived value in the hotel stays.
 

Skyscraper

TS Member
Favourite Ride
Nemesis
Also there's the fact that reserving the Santa experience for hotel guests only makes it more exclusive, so those who've paid for the hotel package feel they're getting a unique experience that's not available to all and sundry. If you offer every experience to everyone, including day guests, then there's less perceived value in the hotel stays.
Plus it wouldn't be a "Santa Sleepover" if you didn't stay onsite. :p
Definitely more exlusive. :)
 

jon81uk

TS Member
Spotted that passholders can pre-book parking for free.
Rides and Lightopia are still an additional charge, but entry to the markets is now free for passholders instead of £6 per car.
 

Steve74

TS Member
Regarding the cost of the Christmas event, am I right in thinking that going as a group of 6, 3 of which are MAP holders and in 2 cars that all we have to pay for is Lightopia (not interested in the rides)? So that would be £120 (6 x £20)
 

jon81uk

TS Member
Regarding the cost of the Christmas event, am I right in thinking that going as a group of 6, 3 of which are MAP holders and in 2 cars that all we have to pay for is Lightopia (not interested in the rides)? So that would be £120 (6 x £20)
Yep that’s the way I read it too. Still need to book parking using the passholders link, but can pick to pay for rides or lightopia or both.

Assuming it’s long enough Lightopia pricing seems to be in line with other similar attractions.
 

JAperson

TS Member
So I've been looking through the christmas ride lineup for this year and it does seem fairly extensive (probably more extensive than ever) with spinball, Mutiny Bay, Hex and TWODW. It is nice to see so much open but I have been wondering why don't they ever open any bigger rides. I understand there is temperature issue's and winter maintenance needs to take place but surely they can get a least one of the big coasters open. I was thinking about oblivion because surely it's operating temperature isn't that low.

On the other hand I do understand it is a family event and that the big rides aren't the focus. I just feel that something for the older ones to do wouldn't go amiss.
 

JAperson

TS Member
Wind is also a big concern, we've had quite a few closures this season due to high winds and the chances of storms only increase through the winter.
That's a good point and I suppose that would effect oblivion so that makes that unlikely. I'm not sure any of the other coasters are really suitable so it makes perfect sense to me why they don't bother with any of the coasters apart from spinball. It is a shame though as one big coaster would do the event no end of good.
 

Skyscraper

TS Member
Favourite Ride
Nemesis
That's a good point and I suppose that would effect oblivion so that makes that unlikely. I'm not sure any of the other coasters are really suitable so it makes perfect sense to me why they don't bother with any of the coasters apart from spinball. It is a shame though as one big coaster would do the event no end of good.
Also not all of the park is accessible during the Christmas event. Dark Forest, Forbidden Valley and X-Sector are all closed off I think.
 

jon81uk

TS Member
They used to for the old Winter Weekends in the 2000s.
Something like Nemesis & Air before Xmas and Oblivion & Black Hole after Xmas so the maintanance staff could concentrate on one half of the park.
But post-Christmas openings stopped a few years ago as they had bad weather causing almost all the rides to remain closed.
I would expect at the moment as they can't even get some rides working during the season they will be concentrating on getting many ready for next year now.
 

WillPS

TS Member
Those early 00s winter opening were only advertised as part of hotel stays, and it was emphasised 'if weather allows'. Obviously the product guests were paying for was a hotel stay, and they would always get that regardless of weather.

It all went to hell when they started advertising February half term openings, cue guests paying and travelling only to find there was nothing for them to do but return home.
 

James

TS Founding Member
I think if this years Christmas event is a success (with it being open to the public), there's scope to open one or two coasters next year (perhaps Wicker Man as a start). December should be OK for most of the rides, it's usually January/February that the cold weather is a bit extreme to operate rides with ease.

Roller coasters operate in other parks around the world in cold weather. With Towers it will depend on the success of this year, the demand for bigger/more rides open and how Towers manage winter maintenance programs.
 

JAperson

TS Member
I think if this years Christmas event is a success (with it being open to the public), there's scope to open one or two coasters next year (perhaps Wicker Man as a start). December should be OK for most of the rides, it's usually January/February that the cold weather is a bit extreme to operate rides with ease.

Roller coasters operate in other parks around the world in cold weather. With Towers it will depend on the success of this year, the demand for bigger/more rides open and how Towers manage winter maintenance programs.
Maybe your right seems logical too me. Especially if they fix the staffing issues' they've been having particularly in maintenance that will allow them to have at least one coaster open.
 

Rob

TS Team
Favourite Ride
Steel Vengeance
Those not wearing an offical Alton Towers Resort Christmas jumper will be denied entry.
 

jon81uk

TS Member
That video might oversell what is being offered a little (adults can't ride the Driving School cars!), but does make it look like a fun magical experiance.
 

Thameslink Rail

TS Member
Favourite Ride
The Smiler
I would love to see this Christmas event run as a full park event or something close to it. If the park can find enough staff and persuade people to go on coasters in cold weather then I think adding in proper thrill rides could work. Whilst I'm not an expert, I would guess that Battle Galleons, Th13teen and the Smiler are probably the least likely to operate during Christmas. RMT and Duel feel like they should be open anyway, Wicker Man feels like a good start if they want to do a trial year. I would also like to see them use the towers over Christmas more, I'm sure I've mentioned in the past I think they should do banquets in the banqueting hall with costumed actors and Mediaeval/Renaissance music.
 
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