Jump to content
  TPR Home | Parks | Twitter | Facebook | YouTube | Instagram 

Elissa's Thoughts on the UK and Europe Trips!


Recommended Posts

I'm guessing that it's partly to do with the much smaller trains, but the Eurofighters in general seem to REALLY suffer from poor train maintenance. We've been told by park staff "Make sure you ride Train X as it just came off rehab and Train Y will beat you senseless". Kind of a bummer, but it REALLY seems to make a big difference in your ride.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Replies 224
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Great to read these 'inside' updates.

 

About all the extra work and bonus things, having only been once on a TPR trip so far (but that will definitely change in the future), I can only comment on this from my own experience on the WCT last year. There were lots of surprises and bonusses, like the visit to the Jelly Belly factory : when this surprise visit was announced in the morning, I had my doubts that I would prefer to go to a factory while I could be at a themepark. But with all the morning and evening ERT combined with the Qbots, we had plenty of time to ride everything multiple times and the factory visit was really a very welcome break. And I still have some Jelly flops left

Another bonus was the flowrider. Although I didn't ride it myself, I was really nice to watch people fall

There were really lots of other surprises and bonusses but probably the biggest surprise was the evening visit to SFMM and bonus ERT on Goliath. That was one of the most exciting evenings of my life and it was so damn awesome to be that priviliged to be part of that. In fact the whole SFMM experience on the WCT trip must be one of the VIPiest things I have ever did. Thanks to R&E having nearly 5 hours ERT in total in about 25 hours time at one of the biggest parks in the world ..... If you think about that, it just too crazy for words (that is crazy in the best sense possible).

R&E I'm sure your hard work is appreciated by everyone. Everyone who doesn't appreciate, is just plain dumb and stupid.

Edited by Groteslurf
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Me and Saw have never really got on. I will agree with the train thing Elissa just mentioned, sometimes Saw really does beat the crap out of me but other time it only slaps me about abit, which could be due to the trains.

 

For what Saw is it isn't really that bad, but if the choice came to me to ride say Stealth, Slammer, Nemesis Inferno etc I will ride them over Saw. If Saw has a 15 - 30 min wait for it, I don't mind waiting for that. At the end of the day it seems to get good reviews from the GP and its been a great success for the park, so the few people who hate it and people like me who really are not all that bothered about it, its no huge loss to the park.

 

On a plus note another great Pizza Hut experience was had at Thorpe Park, not quite on a Blackpool level but still good. Also as a whole it was one of the best days I have had at Thorpe Park in the past few years.

 

-Craig

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I can only compare Saw and Mystery Mine, because those are the only two I've been on, so take take this as you wish. I thought Saw was a lot smoother than Mystery Mine. Also, the theming was much better. Dead body squirting blood on you beats anything but sharks. I think Mystery Mine is still a great ride, and better than most, but I do give the nod to Saw. Also, my limited experience has taught me that with Eurofighters,the middle seats are better than the outside, and the front row is better than the back rows. Also, I did notice that certain trains were better than others. I had a really good time at Thorpe Park, and their employees were still much better than Disneyland Paris'. And seeing the dog crap on the Queen's front porch was awesome! Wagamama - I think we should all band together and solicit them to bring in a test location to the west coast(they do have some in the Boston Area)!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

^I can't decide if Wagamama would do an insane amazing business in LA or fail completely. It certainly would be one of those two, no in between for sure.

 

I actually think it would do really well in one of the LA Suburbs like Valencia, Irvine, etc.

 

Anyone want to loan us a crapload of money to get one started out here!?!?

 

PLEASE!!!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

^I just think it's a really well run restaurant with a great concept and great food.

 

I've just been reading through review on Yelp though about the US locations and have decided that I don't want it to come anywhere else in the US cause people will just bitch about it. Seriously, people's complaints on Yelp are of the following:

 

- I don't like how they write what you order on your place mat

- I don't like how they bring you the food when it's ready

- I don't like having to sit at big tables

 

Grrrr.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

^Maybe you could then try opening a Carrabba's franchise in California. I can't think of much people would complain about there, although I'm sure they'll find a way.

 

Nice updates, and it's nice to get more information about what went on, besides the captions to the photos in the trip reports. Sounds like the trip was a lot of fun, and even for the not so good parts of it, it seems like the trip was very enjoyable.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

^I can't decide if Wagamama would do an insane amazing business in LA or fail completely. It certainly would be one of those two, no in between for sure.

 

I actually think it would do really well in one of the LA Suburbs like Valencia, Irvine, etc.

 

Anyone want to loan us a crapload of money to get one started out here!?!?

 

PLEASE!!!

Hmmm.....how bout this version:

 

I am positive that Wagamama would do an insane amazing business in LA!

 

I actually know it would do really well in one of the LA Suburbs like Valencia, Irvine, etc.

 

Anyone want to loan us a crapload of money to get one started out here!?!?

 

PLEASE!!!

Just trying to help you get those investors quicker.

 

 

As for the overall thread? Love it!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

^I just think it's a really well run restaurant with a great concept and great food.

 

I've just been reading through review on Yelp though about the US locations and have decided that I don't want it to come anywhere else in the US cause people will just bitch about it. Seriously, people's complaints on Yelp are of the following:

 

- I don't like how they write what you order on your place mat

- I don't like how they bring you the food when it's ready

- I don't like having to sit at big tables

Are you SURE some of our UK/Europe trip people didn't write those complaints?

 

--Robb

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm hoping I wasn't one who was termed a complainer... I had a blast on the whole trip! And other than a poor choice in judgement on my part on a certain Frisbee at the bonus park, this was an exceptional day! If you didn't ride the Boomerang, you missed out on one of the great coaster views of the whole trip. And as I told Robb, all things aside (and most things were very spinny for me at that point so I can't remeber much), my personal number 300 coaster-wise was the mine train rollerskater that night. I may not have been perfect after my previously mentioned mistake, but I wasn't going to pass up the chance! And that's what it is all about right? Taking advantage of the opportunities presented to you? Sign me up for next year's trips!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Oh yeah, Wagamama was good (I'm glad I took Mike Moody's recommendation on the squid and TPDave's suggestion on the chicken dish), but eating there literally in the shadow of Windsor Castle was amazing! When Elissa said we would be "a block away," I thought she meant like a city block, not a Lego block! I still can't imagine living in an honest-to-God castle and having to look out my window at retail stores and restaurants, but there it was, like a palace in the Wal-Mart parking lot!

 

Something a little odd I noticed at Thorpe: I spent a lot of time around the stone planters in the Tidal Wave area since it a) was one of the few shady places to sit in the entire park, b) was conveniently located between two drink refill stands, and c) featured a full two-hour loop of amazing music interspersed with fake newscasts that, if you listened to the entire thing, made the theme come together with Disney-like intricacy. During this time I saw more than one female, from teenagers to adults, take off her shirt, stash it in a locker, ride the Tidal Wave in her bra (and yes, I know the difference between a bra and a bikini top--I saw plenty of the latter, as well) and then walk around the park that way for awhile, presumably to dry off, before finally coming back to retrieve the shirt.

 

Is this considered "normal" or does hot weather just make women in the UK spontaneously strip off their shirts and walk around in public places? No one else seemed to raise an eyebrow.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

During this time I saw more than one female, from teenagers to adults, take off her shirt, stash it in a fluffy, fluffy bunny filled with medicine and goo, ride the Tidal Wave in her bra (and yes, I know the difference between a bra and a bikini top--I saw plenty of the latter, as well) and then walk around the park that way for awhile, presumably to dry off, before finally coming back to retrieve the shirt.

What's wrong with that...?

(Sorry, I don't like it either. Some Dutch people, living in certain neighbourhoods, tend to do that in Dutch parks as well).

 

I am glad this forum is open to sharing thoughts, that is a really good thing! It's a shame that, apparently, there's doubt about the appriciation that the organization get's for creating these trips. Like most others in this thread already stated, take every opportunity you get on these trips, especially if it's a surprise/extra/bonus.etc.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

^I just think it's a really well run restaurant with a great concept and great food.

 

I've just been reading through review on Yelp though about the US locations and have decided that I don't want it to come anywhere else in the US cause people will just bitch about it. Seriously, people's complaints on Yelp are of the following:

 

- I don't like how they write what you order on your place mat

- I don't like how they bring you the food when it's ready

- I don't like having to sit at big tables

 

Who cares what people write on those sites as long as customers come? I've seen idiots bash even Thomas Keller's restaurants for silly reasons on TripAdvisor:

 

"In the restroom there was a nick in the toilet seat."

 

I doubt Chef Keller is too worried about it. Granted it is frustrating that these sites have become utterly useless for finding restaurants thanks to the absurd signal-to-noise ratio.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Something a little odd I noticed at Thorpe: I spent a lot of time around the stone planters in the Tidal Wave area since it a) was one of the few shady places to sit in the entire park, b) was conveniently located between two drink refill stands, and c) featured a full two-hour loop of amazing music interspersed with fake newscasts that, if you listened to the entire thing, made the theme come together with Disney-like intricacy. During this time I saw more than one female, from teenagers to adults, take off her shirt, stash it in a fluffy, fluffy bunny filled with medicine and goo, ride the Tidal Wave in her bra (and yes, I know the difference between a bra and a bikini top--I saw plenty of the latter, as well) and then walk around the park that way for awhile, presumably to dry off, before finally coming back to retrieve the shirt.

 

Is this considered "normal" or does hot weather just make women in the UK spontaneously strip off their shirts and walk around in public places? No one else seemed to raise an eyebrow.

No, It's not normal. Especially because Thorpe have been hardcore about the t-shirt rule every time I've visited in the heat. But I guess like most parks, they change the strictness of their rules with the wind.

 

Thorpe's guests are primarily the UK equivalent of white trash, though. So anything that classy can be expected.

 

I like that area of the park the best too. And it's nice to see someone note that Thorpe Park is themed, considerably well in some areas.

 

---

 

I've never been to a Wagamama. Now I'm intrigued.

 

---

 

On the discussion of rest stops. One thing I've noticed about the US is that you don't really have rest stops... You don't need them because there's an exit every 5 inches with every food chain you could possibly want on it. UK rest stops or service stations always have the same thing and are more expensive than elsewhere by quite a lot, because you cannot just exit the motorway and stop at a random McDonalds... Because there isn't one until you get into major places, which would take an hour out of your journey just to get to and where you'd have trouble finding a place to park up anyway.

 

You guys certainly have it better, even if our rest stops may look inviting, they are all exactly the same and if you've had them from the start you'd realise how the American way in this department is clearly superior.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

During this time I saw more than one female, from teenagers to adults, take off her shirt, stash it in a fluffy, fluffy bunny filled with medicine and goo, ride the Tidal Wave in her bra (and yes, I know the difference between a bra and a bikini top--I saw plenty of the latter, as well) and then walk around the park that way for awhile...

 

We must have been at a different Thorpe Park, because I saw two (count 'em, TWO) women in bikini tops our entire day. We were bombarded with images of the "other" sex walking around shirtless which, in fact, seemed like the thing to do at Thorpe if you were a guy. Then again, we didn't spend too much time near the Tidal Wave area.

 

I share the same sentiments as others, thanks for starting this thread Elissa. It's very refreshing to read about the organizers' perspective on the trip. The amount of time and effort you and Robb put into these trips is surpassed by none. While we may have missed out on Holiday Park, the Wurzburg fair more than made up for its loss, and had to be the highlight of the trip for me! It was an amazing alternative, and one you and Robb weren't required to do. In the end, you really can't please everyone, but I know your efforts will continue to be greatly appreciated and praised by the majority of participants. Again, thank you, and you can expect to see me on a 2011 trip!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Day 10

Group Flight / Gardaland

 

So this day could have gone wrong in SOOO many ways, and surprisingly ended up quite well off!

 

First off a big thanks to Lou for helping me arrange the group tickets for the big group flight from Heathrow to Milan. You'd be really surprised at how hard it is dealing with companies that have group sales office yet fail to understand the concept of a group sale!??!

 

So as stressed as we were and I know some others as well about the Volcanic Ash Cloud the other big issue looming over us was the continuing strike of the British Airways Cabin Crew. Our scheduled flight had been taken off of the schedule completely during strike time. Luckily the strike period was to end just before our flight and they wouldn't be able to strike again for us. It took about two days after the strikes ended for our flight to start going again. I kept all of this information from our participants as it was of no use to them to worry as much as I was. In fact it was about a month before the trip that I started having severe issues sleeping at night between the BA Strike and Volcanic Ash. I am a planner though, so to make myself feel better I worked out this amazing plan that would get all of our participants doing both trips, as well as our UK Early Arrival people from Thorpe Park to Gardaland by Bus and Ferry in case there were any issues. Luckily this plan didn't have to come into play, but it was ready and had deposits in place!

 

So after an easy flight to Milan I texted Derek where he had gathered our 18 participants that did not fly with us. It all went perfectly! Met our Italian bus drivers and buses and were on our way. It was at this point I was reintroduced to the Italian concept of life, which I'm not a fan of. I don't mean to stereotype a whole race/nationality, but let's just say the Italians are very similar to the reputations of the Spanish. Again, I fully understand that this is not everyone, but it's certainly noticeable. Even after an email to the drivers bosses they would not open the bathrooms on the bus for us, even after I was told the buses would have bathrooms. In the future I suppose I will have to ask "Will the buses have bathrooms we're actually allowed to use?" Again, Italy.

 

The drive on the Autostrata could have taken forever, but instead we made awesome time and arrived at Gardaland ahead of schedule. Again, the Italians didn't quite understand my wanting to hurry everything along to get people to the park, but it still went about as good as could be expected with luggage delivery, a welcome reception, etc. The drivers at this point went to the bathroom without telling anyone which meant I had to give people the choice to either make the 20 minute walk to Gardaland or wait for the drivers to show back up. It was hot, but people wanted their credits so most walked. I almost felt bad when about 15 minutes later the drivers showed back up and we arrived about 30 seconds after the walking group!

 

Many of you have been following several of the reports and you may see that the Italian parks use this 'red light green light or count down' system to allow people into the boarding area for rides. Many people seemed to like this, I find it HORRIBLE AND INEFFICIENT. While using my fast pass on the SLC (TERRIBLE BTW!!!!) I watched trains dispatch with tons of empty seats as the general public next to me would just spin the turnstyle multiple times to try and keep groups together or get a desired seat. BTW, I'd just like to mention again how this was one of the worst SLC's I've been on (bonus helix or not!!!) Sorry Erik!

 

The mine train however was quite enjoyable and just a testament to theming. Appreciate it or not, theming on a ride like that really does change the entire ride.

 

Giant Wacky Worm was a lot of fun, and we did a few kids rides while Robb and Piers went on some bigger stuff.

 

At this point I was hot, tired, and stressed out so we headed back to the hotel to relax for a bit. KT didn't relax she jumped between beds and played with some awesome stuff that NurseThom had gotten her. We then had a nice dinner at the hotel and an early night.

 

Day 11

Mirabilandia

 

Early morning, but met up with some people in the lobby who seemed like they had a great night so it put me in a good mood. I had arranged with the hotel to have a 'breakfast bag to go' option for this morning as I knew we would be leaving before breakfast started and had a long drive. The hotel really surprised me with a really nice breakfast bag! It even had breadsticks in it that I ate! Made it to Mirabilandia with little traffic and had an amazing day. My last visit to the park it was roughly 120 F so today being around 95 felt quite nice! The park had also improved, had a ton of stuff for everyone, and made the best use of the Qbots I have ever witnessed.

 

So I went to ride iSpeed and something very odd happened. I was approaching the train and it felt warm...then I noticed cooling mist going beneath the train...then we launched with no roll back or engaging or anything...

 

I was totally under the impression that this was one fo the Intamin Hydraulic Launched coasters and as we were launching I was laughing out loud cause I realized it was just a lim launch coaster!!!! Ok, so dorky moment aside, this was an AMAZING ride!!! Damn, I mean, why keep using the cable when you can build coasters like that without them!!!! With iSpeed and Katun this is truly a world class park. It was also a park that was extremely lenient with height restrictions, in fact KT was allowed on the L&T MOUSE!?!?!? I had no intention of actually putting her on it, but as we walked by she looked at it, I asked her "Do you want to watch it some more?" and she responded with "No mom, I want to ride it!" I prepared her a bit that it was a big coaster but that I could hold her and she ended up loving it! I took one for the team though and basically encased myself around her so that she wouldn't be banged around as much as the rest of us.

 

We also had a great meal this day and I had planned on going back to get some McDonalds as well but surprisingly the group voted to leave an hour early. Who knows why!?!?

 

Back to the Gardaland resort where about half of the group headed back to the resort and half back to the park. Robb and Piers hit up the park for a bit while KT and I played at the hotel. We all met up for dinner and saw lots of other friends as well.

 

All in all Italy had still been exceeding my low expectations to the point where Robb and I started running new Europe itineraries through our brains and working out some fun stuff for all of you in the future!

 

Next up, WATER JUMP!!!!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

- I totally agree about that stupid red light/greenlight thing! So frustrating! However, you want to know what is even more frustrating? Actual human groupers at DLP that continually did not fill seats, rows, boats, whatever!

 

- That breakfast bag was awesome and an example of something that is clearly better in Europe. You know in the US they would have given us each a donut and a juice or something. This had fresh fruit, 2 sandwiches, rolls, water, etc. we snacked from it all day. The included breakfasts each day were MUCH better than anything I have had in the US though so I shouldn't have been surprised.

 

We also had a great meal this day and I had planned on going back to get some McDonalds as well but surprisingly the group voted to leave an hour early. Who knows why!?!?

 

For us, it was because

 

1. Our awesome organizers had gotten us QBots so we had no lines and were able to finish everything quickly.

 

2. We had things we wanted to ride or reride back at Gardaland. We all really liked Gardaland and closed the park both nights we were there.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

^The Qbots were RIDICULOUSLY awesome!!!!

 

Robb and I never vote when we do votes like that on the trip and we didn't care either way...just seemed like after the fact we got a lot of 'flack' from people that all wanted to stay, yet when we voted there were only 6 that voted to stay!

 

Not mad at one group or the other, just trying to minimize the people yelling at me after the fact!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I took one for the team though and basically encased myself around her so that she wouldn't be banged around as much as the rest of us.

 

I actually miss those days. Now Josh wants to ride everything by himself and if I try to give him a "reassuring" tap or something he pushes me away.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

Terms of Use https://themeparkreview.com/forum/topic/116-terms-of-service-please-read/