Theme Park Opening Times 2015

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by AstroDan, 4th Jan 2015.

  1. AstroDan

    AstroDan TS Forum Team Team Member

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    It is a nightmare to manoeuvre around, but the 2015 Alton Towers theme park opening times have been released and would you believe it? There's some improvement on 2014! There are considerably less 5pm closes next season.

    The only weekend dates which are 5pm next season are the opening weekend (which is usual, as it's normally quiet) of Saturday 21st/Sunday 22nd March. ALL other Saturdays with exception to one are 6pm and all other Sunday's are at least 5.30pm, with the vast majority through May/June/July/August/September being 6pm.

    I know we all want Alton Towers to open even later, but I think this is a positive step from 2014! Hurrah!

    :)
     
    Posted 4th Jan 2015
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  2. Jonathan

    Jonathan TowersStreet Member

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    Definitely a step in the right direction!
     
    Posted 4th Jan 2015
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  3. Rob

    Rob TS Forum Team Team Member

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    Wow, that's actually pretty impressive (relatively speaking)! Good to see this, hopefully it will improve further in future seasons. It appears they may have learnt from past mistakes.

    :)
     
    Posted 4th Jan 2015
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  4. Tom

    Tom TowersStreet Member

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    We have seen how easily things can be retracted though!
     
    Posted 4th Jan 2015
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  5. AstroDan

    AstroDan TS Forum Team Team Member

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    Indeed, we have. And therefore this can all be taken with a pinch of salt. HOWEVER, it is better than what was put online at this stage last season.
     
    Posted 4th Jan 2015
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  6. _nemesis_

    _nemesis_ Guest

    Its progress, but honestly, I'd much prefer it if they closed earlier and acctually opened everything at 10am. Having something as major as the Skyride shut until an hour (and sometimes two) into the day is pretty poor.

    Though on the subject of actual opening hours, its frustrating to see that they're still shutting at 6pm in the summer. If Chessington and Thorpe can muster up the money for the extra hour, so can Alton Towers. I don't mean to sound cynical, but seriously, its light for another four hours.
     
    Posted 4th Jan 2015
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  7. AstroDan

    AstroDan TS Forum Team Team Member

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    I agree that the last 2 weeks of the school summer holidays in August, and all weekends through July and August, should be 7pm closes. Thorpe Park, LEGOLAND and Chessington all do better in this area.
     
    Posted 4th Jan 2015
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  8. James

    James TS Founding Member

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    They should have 7pm or even 8pm closures in the summer, although this is a good step in the right direction. Fingers crossed they don't sneakily change the times over these next few months and throughout the 2015 season.
     
    Posted 4th Jan 2015
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  9. TheMan

    TheMan TowersStreet Member

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    7pm in the summer at the UKs premier park? Even that's a joke.

    Even sodding Blackpool managed midnight closes, THORPE summer nights, and continental Europe just totally embarrass them.

    Shambolic opening hours.

    8pm during the peak days should be standard. They're just archaic and about 10 years behind everywhere else.

    I also think this is where they also make a cock up.

    What people don't realise though then when they have park close, it's actually queue close, which works against them because if they said Towers Street stays open for an hour after park close people would stop for food etc, but they close the outlets, or at least give the impression they are.

    It's a mish mash.

    What actually happens then, is opportunities they have to make money, the pass up (*facepalm*) and then they end up recouping it with more nefarious up-selling in your face techniques, poor quality, higher prices etc.

    Surely I am not the only one who looks at this and wonders who the heck is running the place?

    So busy penny pinching they miss opportunities staring them in the face.

    Keeping people in the park longer spending money on balmy (or rainy) summer evenings with kids in tow nagging for things is one of them.
     
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    Posted 4th Jan 2015
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  10. delta79

    delta79 TowersStreet Member

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    I have wondered for a while why they don't have the 'why not stop for a coffee, before heading home' thing going on. they could sell light bites along side the drinks.
    when my daughter and myself get back to the car, we have a drink and a snack in the car before heading home. The funny looks we get for having a camping cooker and a kettle on in the boot, for a hot drink.
     
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    Posted 4th Jan 2015
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  11. AstroDan

    AstroDan TS Forum Team Team Member

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    The park is usually dead for the last hour when they open much later than 6. Hence why I think only the last fortnight of August would feasibly work.
     
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    Posted 5th Jan 2015
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  12. jon81uk

    jon81uk TowersStreet Member

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    Blackpool has an entire seafront of bars & hotels within walking distance, meaning the visitors don't have far to get back to accomodation. BPB also opens at 11am or 12 noon.
    Thorpes summer nights are seperately ticketed so not really comparable, but I think it is something that should work for Thorpe as it is close enough for people to go for evening only, AT is too far to make it worthwhile to do that.
    At Disney parks of course they have fireworks almost every night giving a reason to stay in the park, this is why the studios park at Paris often closes at 7pm but the Disneyland Park will be open until 9/10/11pm.


    TowersTrading is open for about an hour after park close, for shopping but I think if they kept places open for food it would be hard to make people change their mindset and eat a second meal in the park. I think for many people it is the thought of spending on food in the park twice that means this may not work. Guests staying in the on-site hotels obviously prefer to eat at the hotels as you can visit your room first.

    I think they should do 7pm on Friday & Saturday nights in the summer holidays at AT, but given most people who aren't staying on site have a 2hr or longer drive home, most people won't stay later without an incentive such as fireworks.
    But Extraordinary Golf needs to be open until 9pm all summer, it is ridiculous that it closes half hour after ride close as this doesn't give enough time to get out the park and start a game! If golf closed at 9pm then it gives an hour for people to play before the staff member leaves at 10pm.
     
    Posted 5th Jan 2015
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  13. Rob

    Rob TS Forum Team Team Member

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    I can't complain too much. Yes we would all like later openings in the summer (although as Dan points out when this has happened in the past the park has often been dead past 6pm even on the days where the weather is good). In the last couple of years we have seen cuts when opening hours have been announced. This year we have seen the opposite. Ok it is not in a big way but they are not going to suddenly extended opening hours massively. If they get slightly better year on year then that is decent progress and they're more likely to get away with it before Merlin realise the additional costs!

    Hopefully Towers will be more flexible with park closing time this year though. If summers days are busy then they should extend to 7pm

    :)
     
    Posted 5th Jan 2015
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  14. Coaster

    Coaster TowersStreet Member

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    Anything below 8pm in peak season (summer) is a disgrace.
     
    Posted 5th Jan 2015
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  15. Maelstrom

    Maelstrom TowersStreet Member

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    I get that the hours during summer are not great, but when the park have tried it in the past just not enough guests stayed past 6 to make it profitable hence why they don't do it. So I get why they don't stay open until 8pm or latter. They tried even latter opening in 1999 and 2000 during August ( was 8pm I think) with an evening stunt show on the lake, but again ultimately wasn't cost effective to do it.

    Maybe they should try some kind of event again during summer to try and keep people in the park. I do think it should be 7 during August though and water park and golf should stay open latter especially during summer months.
     
    Posted 5th Jan 2015
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  16. Rob

    Rob TS Forum Team Team Member

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    Has Towers ever been open until 8pm in the summer? It was 7pm a few years back but it certainly has never been 8pm in the years I've been going frequently. If they opened until 8pm all summer then between 6pm and 8pm the park would be almost empty more often than not. I'm happy with 6pm as long as they are flexible when to comes to extending opening when there is the demand.

    :)
     
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    Posted 5th Jan 2015
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  17. TheMan

    TheMan TowersStreet Member

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    Maybe if people were used to it being open they might stay.

    It's hard enough for us as enthusiasts to keep up with when the parks open.

    With regards to Towers street, make it entertaining, keep the eateries open for easy snacks not full meals maybe, and even maybe takeaway food.

    I've been stuck in the doughnut queue for half hour on a moderate day so I know there's demand for it. Just tailor to the season.
     
    Posted 5th Jan 2015
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  18. TheMan

    TheMan TowersStreet Member

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    Try advertising widely it's open later.

    Like seriously. It's engrained into people that it closes earlier, it's also more likely to spread out people's arrival times especially in busy summer weeks.

    Just put an advert on TV saying "OPEN TILL 8 WEEKS...."

    Still think it would be quiet?
     
    Posted 5th Jan 2015
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  19. James

    James TS Founding Member

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    Maybe the park has been dead from 6pm in the past just due to the fact we're so commonly used to theme parks closing by 5pm? I doubt guests expect the park to be open until late in the summer. Maybe if Towers advertised it a bit on social media and the website there would be more guests hanging around until late.

    I've thought they could try out having a stunt show on the lake on summer weekends, and keep the park open until 8 or 9 with the stunt show being performed at the end of the day. I think they seriously need to look at some from of events outside of the end of the season. Even the late Tussauds experimented with Easter and summer events, Chocolate Towers worked greatly in 2006 and the summer event in 2006 worked equally as well. Although this is probably another subject for another topic.
     
    Posted 5th Jan 2015
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  20. delta79

    delta79 TowersStreet Member

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    If they did a late close and marketed it with the on site accommodation, they could have great uptake
     
    Posted 5th Jan 2015
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