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

Yes. Yes, you should plan on purchasing Flash Pass/FastLane+/Timesaver/Skip the Line etc, if you are going to a Park in 2021


Recommended Posts

I keep seeing this question popping up across multiple threads (and all over FB group too). . so figured I could start a thread answering the question:   

I'm going to xxxx park on xxxxx day, do you think crowds will be big enough that I should buy the upcharge skip the line pass?


--> EVERYTHING is different in 2021. . . pent up demand from COVID closures for 15 months has resulted in every park being slammed, most every day (unless poor weather keeps the crowds away).
Many parks are also dealing with staffing issues, resulting in shorter hours, and hella long lines for food places that *are* actually open.
 

so the answer to "should I buy Flash Pass / Fast Lane / Skip the Line?" is

YES

thruout 2021, the answer is YES.

the only reason not to get it, is if you don't mind not riding much, and just want to go for the atmosphere to walk around the park, maybe grabbing only 1 or 2 rides.
(for example, your "home park" and you don't care if you ride much, you just want to go out and enjoy the day and people watch).

Personally tho?  if I'm traveling specifically to go to a park?  damn right, I'm paying the upcharge to get Flash Pass/Fast Lane +/Timesaver, etc. . .     especially if I plan to eat in a park, and I know I'll spend 45 minutes in the food line?  I want to make up that time elsewhere on a ride.


(steps down off soapbox)

  • Like 4
  • Thanks 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just now, coasterbill said:

* except Dorney

well, that's just a given 😛

(tho if Talon has a line, it might be worth FL+ for that to reride it.   What does Dorney charge?  like $4 for FL & $5 for FL+ ?     )

LOL

Link to comment
Share on other sites

6 minutes ago, BRTeller said:

Hate to burst your bubble on that one, but even Dorney has been horrible the days I've gone.

to be fair, Dorney is usually "horrible" anyways - miles and miles of concrete baking in the sun.

but the waterpark stays busy if you like that kind of thing, and it draws everyone away from the rides in the park (tho I do think most of the rides are pretty mediocre).    Talon is good tho, I enjoyed Hydra, but seriously, the only reason I'd recommend Dorney is to get a ride on Demon Drop - which is still amazingly fun.

now, if they ever put the holding brake back on Possessed?  then there's two reasons to visit.  😛




SO much concrete. . but the holding brake on the opposite side was neat, and made it worth the ride.

IMG_0762.thumb.jpg.9cf927f137ed55574e596ecd25f6532a.jpg

IMG_0763.thumb.jpg.57c156eef5a205d7104f7227a7e286c7.jpgIMG_0761.thumb.jpg.af4d665e924863edd26a490e3cd0616e.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Much to my own amazement I actually had great days at Carowinds and KD (on opening weekend!) Kennywood and KI all without fast lane :)
Granted, Kennywood was a supposed to be rainy day, KI was a monday (and also rainy) but yeah sometimes the coaster gods shine upon you :)

Not from this point on though, yeah now that June is here I won't be caught dead at any park without! Esp since I committed to do Great Adventure with my brother and he can only do weekends...RIP me 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I was just making a joke, I didn't mean to derail this thread (but also I'm 100% serious, lol).

The only thing that I'd add is that in many cases there's no harm just buying the passes at the park. You often need to do that anyway to get pass discounts to apply properly. Unless it's a park where pre-buying or buying as soon as you arrive saves you a ton of time (like a Six Flags park) or you're going on a weekend where there's a very real chance that they'll sell-out you can always just budget for the pass and then play it by ear because there's no real reason not to. Whenever I see a post like this about a Cedar Fair or Busch park where buying the pass in a shop takes approximately 8 seconds I scratch my head.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have been to two parks in the past two weeks and did not buy Fast Lane / Quick pass  / Timesaver etc at either and we barely waited in line for anything.  This was at Carowinds on Memorial Day and Busch Gardens Williamsburg on Sunday and Monday of this week.  

With that being said we will be visiting SFOG at the end of August and I have already bought them for that trip because we will only be at the park for one day and I want to be certain we get to ride everything multiple times.  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, coasterbill said:

I was just making a joke, I didn't mean to derail this thread (but also I'm 100% serious, lol).

The only thing that I'd add is that in many cases there's no harm just buying the passes at the park. You often need to do that anyway to get pass discounts to apply properly. Unless it's a park where pre-buying or buying as soon as you arrive saves you a ton of time (like a Six Flags park) or you're going on a weekend where there's a very real chance that they'll sell-out you can always just budget for the pass and then play it by ear because there's no real reason not to. Whenever I see a post like this about a Cedar Fair or Busch park where buying the pass in a shop takes approximately 8 seconds I scratch my head.

Only one problem, and not sure if it's a new "normal" thing or just for now, but Cedar Point was sold out of FL in advance for both days I was there. As was Kings Island the first day I was there (I have no idea about the second day because I didnt check). So planning on walking into a shop (which I've absolutely done before) is risking it right now. 

Also, I waited 30 minutes to get my wristband at Cedar Point because there's only one booth for redemption and only 2 people working at it. They also do the dining and drink pass redemption at the same booth, so yeah...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

23 minutes ago, coasterbill said:

If you pre-purchased at Cedar Point then you have to wait in that line, but if you purchase on a whim you can just buy it in basically any store.

Like I said, if you're planning on purchasing on a whim, you're playing with fire. 

That said right now, every date in the near future is available so maybe I just got unlucky.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think you did.  They were selling it in stores on Memorial Weekend Sunday, when the place was packed.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

if you want to get the most out of your visit to a Theme Park this year, I still say you should plan/budget for the perk.

if you get lucky to have a slow day and you don't need to get one? great. . but I wouldn't chance it, and stand by my advice.

(hell, i'm going to Coasterstock at KI in ~1 month, and even tho we have tons of ERT on both days?  still bought FL+ for Saturday).

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Zand said:

Only one problem, and not sure if it's a new "normal" thing or just for now, but Cedar Point was sold out of FL in advance for both days I was there. As was Kings Island the first day I was there (I have no idea about the second day because I didnt check). So planning on walking into a shop (which I've absolutely done before) is risking it right now. 

Also, I waited 30 minutes to get my wristband at Cedar Point because there's only one booth for redemption and only 2 people working at it. They also do the dining and drink pass redemption at the same booth, so yeah...

 

2 hours ago, coasterbill said:

I was just making a joke, I didn't mean to derail this thread (but also I'm 100% serious, lol).

The only thing that I'd add is that in many cases there's no harm just buying the passes at the park. You often need to do that anyway to get pass discounts to apply properly. Unless it's a park where pre-buying or buying as soon as you arrive saves you a ton of time (like a Six Flags park) or you're going on a weekend where there's a very real chance that they'll sell-out you can always just budget for the pass and then play it by ear because there's no real reason not to. Whenever I see a post like this about a Cedar Fair or Busch park where buying the pass in a shop takes approximately 8 seconds I scratch my head.

The issue I’ve seen is that they do raise the price the more they sell, so if you wait until you’re there, depending on how many they sell, you could end up spending significantly more than if you buy pre-purchase.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, coasterbill said:

If you pre-purchased at Cedar Point then you have to wait in that line, but if you purchase on a whim you can just buy it in basically any store.

You can redeem pre-purchased (or in my case all season) fast lane at any location that sells them. 

  • Like 4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

14 hours ago, ytterbiumanalyst said:

OMG this is perfect. Bert for Post of the Week!

LOL. . thanks.

and as more and more parks announce cuts to hours. . I think the lines are gonna get even more insane on the days/hours they are open.

 I get it - really, I do - but with so many "enthusiasts" feeling entitled?  I feel terrible for the employees who have to face the barrage of complaints about it.


Budget into your plan for skip the lines - it will make a visit much better (and even better if it turns out you didn't NEED it.. . ).

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Also point of note for those new to the system used by Six Flags:

Realize that "Platinum" level is basically buying you access to an additional ride or two and not necessarily saving you time, per se, despite what the marketing material may say.

In many cases after you go through the FP entrance, it will take you 15-30 minutes to complete your ride and reach the exit.  If you have "Platinum" FP, your next ride selection will start buzzing shortly after you select it.  With Gold, you may have to wait 20 minutes before the FP is buzzing saying it's ready.   Well, since it takes 20 minutes to complete your current ride, and another 10 minutes to walk to the next ride, both the "gold" and "platinum" FP people will have the exact same wait in reality.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have been looking at Queue Times for various parks over the past few months and can’t believe how bad some lines have been even during the week when school is in session (2 hour wait for Candymonium as an example). 

19 hours ago, Mike240SX said:

FL+ is awesome at Dorney....for the water park.

I wouldn’t want to go to the water park without it. On a hot and humid day, it was so nice to be able to skip an hour wait for Aquablast and wait a few minutes at the most or be able to ride all 6 Snake Pit slides before someone in the regular line was able to ride 1 of those slides.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, RaceBoarder said:

Also point of note for those new to the system used by Six Flags:

Realize that "Platinum" level is basically buying you access to an additional ride or two and not necessarily saving you time, per se, despite what the marketing material may say.

In many cases after you go through the FP entrance, it will take you 15-30 minutes to complete your ride and reach the exit.  If you have "Platinum" FP, your next ride selection will start buzzing shortly after you select it.  With Gold, you may have to wait 20 minutes before the FP is buzzing saying it's ready.   Well, since it takes 20 minutes to complete your current ride, and another 10 minutes to walk to the next ride, both the "gold" and "platinum" FP people will have the exact same wait in reality.

just want to point out that this is not necessarily true, and can really bite one in the ass.

 

yes, you're in the Flash Pass line with Gold and Bronze members, even if you're Platinum - since it buzzes to go to the line once the time is up (be it 10 minutes for Platinum, 30 minutes for Gold, or 50 minutes for Bronze).

*but*. . you can't book your next ride until the FP entrance operator scans you in. (and in MANY cases, that's at the station entrance - not at the Flash Pass entrance. . so yeah, you might be waiting in that flash pass entrance line, but they won't scan you in until you get to the operator at the entrance).

so the moment you're scanned, and in the station, if you're Platinum, you can likely book your next ride - and head directly there after your current ride is done.

HOWEVER - if you're Gold (or Bronze) and it's a busy day?  odds are that once they scan you in the station, you can book your next ride, but can't head there to get in the line until 30-50 minutes later (Condor and I had Gold level at a super busy day at SFFT last Nov - it's a year round park - and once we booked Iron Rattler?  we had a 55 minute wait before we could go to the FP line).   

so yeah, it can really bite you and eat up a ton of time if you don't splurge and go for Platinum.

- i can see some "not following the rules" and getting in the line before their time has pinged (which is really breaking the rules, as that's not following the intention of buying FlashPass). . .  but I also have seen that happen and the operator makes them leave the line, if they notice them letting others go in front of them to wait for their times.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, bert425 said:

just want to point out that this is not necessarily true, and can really bite one in the ass.

 

yes, you're in the Flash Pass line with Gold and Bronze members, even if you're Platinum - since it buzzes to go to the line once the time is up (be it 10 minutes for Platinum, 30 minutes for Gold, or 50 minutes for Bronze).

*but*. . you can't book your next ride until the FP entrance operator scans you in. (and in MANY cases, that's at the station entrance - not at the Flash Pass entrance. . so yeah, you might be waiting in that flash pass entrance line, but they won't scan you in until you get to the operator at the entrance).

so the moment you're scanned, and in the station, if you're Platinum, you can likely book your next ride - and head directly there after your current ride is done.

HOWEVER - if you're Gold (or Bronze) and it's a busy day?  odds are that once they scan you in the station, you can book your next ride, but can't head there to get in the line until 30-50 minutes later (Condor and I had Gold level at a super busy day at SFFT last Nov - it's a year round park - and once we booked Iron Rattler?  we had a 55 minute wait before we could go to the FP line).   

so yeah, it can really bite you and eat up a ton of time if you don't splurge and go for Platinum.

- i can see some "not following the rules" and getting in the line before their time has pinged (which is really breaking the rules, as that's not following the intention of buying FlashPass). . .  but I also have seen that happen and the operator makes them leave the line, if they notice them letting others go in front of them to wait for their times.

The TX parks must be different then.   Almost none of the rides that I have come across put you directly in the station and outside in less than 15 minutes.   Also I've never had it to where the person scanning/clearing your flash pass isn't well outside the station.    

 

Unless you are stuck going on July 3rd or a Fright Fest Saturday, I have NEVER seen a gold wait time over 40 minutes.  That certainly ISN'T the norm by far.   Like I said, 90% of the time your next ride is ready by the time you are walking out the exit turnstile and another 7% of the time your ride is ready by the time you lazily walk to the next location.   If it's stupid busy, then yea, take a break.   But that is by far the minority exception to the FP use pattern that most of us will experience.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

not in 2021 

Crowds and demand are different - just look at crowds every weekend (and most weekdays) at open parks.  You can NOT compare to how things have always been in the past.

 

and every SF park I've used Flash Pass at has the person scanning at the station - not at the entrance to the FP line.  (so yes, you can wait in that FP line after it's pinged you to get in the line - for a good 20 minutes or longer - and you can't pick next ride until you've scanned in from the Flash Pass op near the station entrance)

but your experience is obviously different, so that's nice that you've had better luck not going for the highest tier.

I still recommend highest tier you can get if you're going to ride things and not just wander around.

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/