Advice/Tips for East Coast Trip in May 2015

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Advice/Tips for East Coast Trip in May 2015

Postby ralphiejunior » Wed Oct 15, 2014 5:30 am

Dear TPRers,

Greetings from Singapore! We are crazy about the in-and-outs of rollers coasters, and will be travelling on a month-long road trip to the East Coast in May 2015.
We will be visiting Cedar Point, Kings Island, Kings Dominion, Carowinds, Busch Gardens, Hersheypark, Dorney Park, Dollywood, Six Flags Great Adventure, Six Flags America, and Six Flags Great America.

This trip took 4 years to save, 2 years to plan, and we'd like for it to go flawlessly. We also plan to buy Cedar Fair and Six Flags season passes.
Therefore, in order to maximize the enjoyment of our trip, we would be grateful and appreciate your inputs to our concerns below:-

1. We have checked with Six Flags and Cedar Fair - they are unable to confirm operating dates and hours for 2015. Historically, when does such information get released?

2. We have set aside one day to fully experience each park. To beat the crowds, we will be taking up Fast Lane Pluses and Platinum Flash Passes at every park. Will this be enough to experience all the major rides at least once in each park in May 2015?

3. Are there any suggested itineraries that we could refer to for each of these parks that we're visiting?

4. How would you deal with people who may cuss at us for cutting the queues using the Fast Lane Pluses and Platinum Flash Passes. Since we're foreigners, we don't want to be in a bad situation.

5. Any other tips to appreciate and enjoy the parks.


Thank you for your support and response!


With best regards,

Ralph
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Re: Advice/Tips for East Coast Trip in May 2015

Postby robbalvey » Wed Oct 15, 2014 10:30 am

I'll try to answer some of your questions, but sounds like you guys have done pretty well!

1. We have checked with Six Flags and Cedar Fair - they are unable to confirm operating dates and hours for 2015. Historically, when does such information get released?

Traditionally closer to the start of the calendar year.

2. We have set aside one day to fully experience each park. To beat the crowds, we will be taking up Fast Lane Pluses and Platinum Flash Passes at every park. Will this be enough to experience all the major rides at least once in each park in May 2015?

Yes, I think that is a very good plan and one day should be enough assuming you are doing a full open to close day.

3. Are there any suggested itineraries that we could refer to for each of these parks that we're visiting?

We do have some guides written in our Park Index that might be of some help. Otherwise I would also post in each parks discussion thread asking for advice from locals.

4. How would you deal with people who may cuss at us for cutting the queues using the Fast Lane Pluses and Platinum Flash Passes. Since we're foreigners, we don't want to be in a bad situation.

It's really not been much of a problem in recent years. Now that front-of-the-line passes have been around for quite some time, people seem more used to and accepting of them. If you do get any hassle, just ignore them. They are only jealous of your line skipping pass! =)

5. Any other tips to appreciate and enjoy the parks.

If you have a day or two that you could set aside as a contingency, I would. That time of year you could run into some rainy days which might close rides. So if you have any wiggle room in your schedule to shift things around on the fly if needed, it's always recommended.

Have fun!

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Re: Advice/Tips for East Coast Trip in May 2015

Postby ralphiejunior » Thu Oct 16, 2014 8:52 am

Hello Robb!

We really appreciate your response to our queries.
This is really assuring, and we definitely will consider your advice on the provisions for contingencies..

The Battlestar Galactica ride is finally looking to reopen after months of repair works.
We look forward to hosting your team should you decide to revisit Singapore!

Cheers~

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Re: Advice/Tips for East Coast Trip in May 2015

Postby robbalvey » Thu Oct 16, 2014 12:33 pm

^ We will be back!

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Re: Advice/Tips for East Coast Trip in May 2015

Postby dcxs » Thu Oct 16, 2014 5:07 pm

I went to Six Flags Great Adventure in early june on a weekday and didnt have any need for a fastpass. Just seemed very expensive to buy one at every park! Mb buy one for just the very special ones Cedar Point etc.

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Re: Advice/Tips for East Coast Trip in May 2015

Postby robbalvey » Thu Oct 16, 2014 6:58 pm

dcxs wrote:I went to Six Flags Great Adventure in early june on a weekday and didnt have any need for a fastpass. Just seemed very expensive to buy one at every park! Mb buy one for just the very special ones Cedar Point etc.

Why don't you let the person he asked answer the questions?

Personally, if I were you, I would ABSOLUTELY be planning to get the virtual queue at every park. I always say the best day at a park is a day where you've bought the virtual queue and didn't need it. That's MUCH better than being at a park where you wish you would have bought it, and they sold out.

Even when a park only has lines that are 20 minutes long, if your Flash Pass makes it so you wait only 5 minutes, those 15 minutes per ride add up and can either turn into more rides that you get, or an easier, relaxing day.

Now in the off-chance you do get to a park, and the place is just EMPTY, like there's only a couple rows of cars in the parking lot, then no, don't get it, and if you've pre-paid for it, you might go ahead and ask if you can get a refund or at least some sort of credit.

But even on just a moderately busy day, I find them to be quite valuable.

In short, I don't agree with your advice, dcxs.

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Re: Advice/Tips for East Coast Trip in May 2015

Postby TheBeastHelix » Fri Oct 17, 2014 9:12 am

Since you are going to be in the vicinity of Ohio/Pennsylvania, I would definitely make a stop at Knoebels and Waldameer Park. Both have free admission and pay-per-ride systems. They are great small parks with only a few coasters, but they are some of the best world-class coasters in the states. It could be only an hour or two visit at each park and wouldn't waste a day of your trip-you may even drive past them on your route.
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Re: Advice/Tips for East Coast Trip in May 2015

Postby ralphiejunior » Wed Mar 25, 2015 5:31 pm

Hello all,

Sorry for being inactive for a while! Got rear-ended by 3 vehicles a few days after I posted this thread; was on hospitalization leave for 2 months as a result of Grade III whiplash.

Thanks for all your comments! I think they have been very helpful, and on the side, I have also firmed up my itinerary for this trip, spanning slightly >1 month, from 5 May - 7 June 2015. While we have budgeted for Fast Lane Pluses and Platinum Flash Passes, we were wondering if we should pre-pay online (subjected to a $5.99 processing fee for each Cedar Fair park purchase), or to buy them off the counter on the same day?

For reference, allow me to humbly post the details and my remarks to each of my intentions:-

Date Day Hours Park Pass Type Remarks
09/05/2015 Saturday 10:00 - 22:00 Carowinds Fast Lane Plus Expedited entry for Fury 325!
11/05/2015 Monday 10:00 - 19:00 Dollywood Timesaver Not too expensive
16/05/2015 Saturday 10:00 - 21:00 Six Flags Over Georgia Gold FLASH Pass Long opening hours; not many coasters - no need Platinum FLASH Pass
18/05/2015 Monday 11:00 - 20:00 Kennywood Front Seat Gold Not too expensive
19/05/2015 Tuesday 10:00 - 20:00 Cedar Point Fast Lane Plus Expedited entry into Rougarou!
21/05/2015 Thursday 10:00 - 17:00 Six Flags Great America Platinum FLASH Pass Short opening hours; one-time access for Goliath
24/05/2015 Sunday 10:30 - 22:00 Six Flags St. Louis Platinum FLASH Pass Massive crowds for Memorial Day weekend
25/05/2015 Monday 10:00 - 19:00 Holiday World & Splashin' Safari N/A
26/05/2015 Tuesday 10:00 - 20:00 Kings Island Fast Lane Plus Expedited entry for Banshee!
27/05/2015 Wednesday 10:00 - 18:00 Busch Gardens Williamsburg Quick Queue Unlimited Short opening hours; 3 hours "utilized" for Roller Coaster Insider tour
29/05/2015 Friday 10:30 - 18:00 Kings Dominion Fast Lane Plus Expedited entry for Intimidator 305!
01/06/2015 Monday 10:00 - 20:00 Hersheypark Fast Track Pass Short opening hours; few hours to be spent at waterpark
02/06/2015 Tuesday 10:00 - 18:00 Knoebels N/A
03/06/2015 Wednesday 10:30 - 18:00 Six Flags Great Adventure Platinum FLASH Pass Short opening hours; commencement of summer holidays; lots of coasters
04/06/2015 Thursday 10:00 - 20:00 Dorney Park Fast Lane No roller coasters require Fast Lane Plus

Appreciate your comments please!


Best,
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Re: Advice/Tips for East Coast Trip in May 2015

Postby larrygator » Thu Mar 26, 2015 4:17 pm

What time are you leaving Kings Island and what time are you planning to arrive at Busch Gardens. It is a long drive between those parks to do them on back to back days
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Re: Advice/Tips for East Coast Trip in May 2015

Postby ralphiejunior » Thu Mar 26, 2015 8:36 pm

Hello larrygator,

It is indeed a super long drive but that is the only window of opportunity I can squeeze if I want to attempt the roller coaster insider tour at busch. My partner and I will take turns driving from about 7.00pm at Kings Island.

We expect to be burned out during Busch but we have made provision for a full day of rest in Williamsburg, VA to recover from the drive.

Having traveled so far away to experience all these parks, I am just contemplating if I should buy the fast passes online or risk have none at all to purchase on that day itself (just to save about 70 dollars in online processing fee and foregone discounts).

But I am inclined towards buying them first, but before I do so, would like some thoughts from a few opinion leaders in the forum. :)

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