2018 Theme Park Attendance Report - TEA / AECOM Theme Index

2018's most-attended theme parks in the world!
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2018 Theme Park Attendance Report - TEA / AECOM Theme Index

Postby A.J. » Wed May 22, 2019 6:46 am

The Themed Entertainment Association (TEA) and AECOM have released the 2018 annual attendance report and Theme Index!

Click HERE to check it out, as well as former years!

Theme Park and Water Park Attendance Shows Strong Results in 2018, Museums Continue to Grow, and Observation Experiences Do Well

Attendance at the world’s top theme park groups increased by 5.4% from 476 million to 501 million visitors, exceeding a half billion visits for the first time in history and representing almost 7% of the world population. Visits to the top 25 theme parks worldwide grew by 3.3% from 243 million to 252 million, which was driven by the addition of second gates, leveraging major intellectual properties (IP), and resort hotels adjacent to parks.

Attendance at the top 20 water parks grew by 2.5% in 2018, while the world’s top 20 museums increased by 0.1%. This year’s report also includes a special feature on observation experiences, with attendance at the top 20 worldwide at 54 million.

The TEA/AECOM Theme Index and Museum Index report identifies the top theme parks and water parks and the top museums around the world — and reflect their performance for the calendar year.

Global attendance data are broken down by geographic region, by chain and by type of venue. The report is the definitive annual attendance study for the themed entertainment and museum industries, making it a valuable business reference and resource for the visitor attractions industry.


Top 25 Amusement & Theme Parks Worldwide

1. Magic Kingdom (Walt Disney World) - 20.859 million
2. Disneyland Park (Disneyland) - 18.666 million
3. Tokyo Disneyland (Tokyo Disney Resort) - 17.907 million
4. Tokyo DisneySea (Tokyo Disney Resort) - 14.651 million
5. Universal Studios Japan - 14.3 million
6. Disney's Animal Kingdom (Walt Disney World) - 13.75 million
7. EPCOT (Walt Disney World) - 12.444 million
8. Shanghai Disneyland - 11.8 million
9. Disney's Hollywood Studios (Walt Disney World) - 11.258 million
10. Chimelong Ocean Kingdom - 10.83 million
11. Universal Studios Florida (Universal Orlando) - 10.708 million
12. Disney California Adventure (Disneyland) - 9.861 million
13. Disneyland Park (Disneyland Paris) - 9.843 million
14. Islands of Adventure (Universal Orlando) - 9.788 million
15. Universal Studios Hollywood - 9.147 million
16. Hong Kong Disneyland - 6.7 million
17. Lotte World - 5.96 million
18. Nagashima Spa Land - 5.92 million
19. Everland - 5.85 million
20. Ocean Park - 5.8 million
21. Europa Park - 5.72 million
22. Efteling - 5.4 million
23. Walt Disney Studios Park (Disneyland Paris) - 5.298 million
24. Tivoli Gardens - 4.85 million
25. Chimelong Paradise - 4.68 million

Now, discuss! More images and info from the release will be coming later.
Last edited by larrygator on Fri May 24, 2019 2:39 pm.
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Re: 2018 Theme Park Attendance Report - TEA / AECOM Theme In

Postby coasterbill » Wed May 22, 2019 7:00 am

Congratulations to Cedar Point Shores Water Park on doing 3.67 million guests. Amazing!

In all seriousness, this is a fun read but it's hard to take these numbers seriously. We already know that Cedar Fair as a whole was only up 1% but we're supposed to believe that Knott's and Cedar Point (I guess that's supposed to say Cedar Point) are up 2%? Even with Kings Island under-performing the chain and Wonderland holding at that 1% number I feel like they're painting a rosier picture than you would expect, especially when you remember that Kings Dominion added a bunch of operating dates and they were probably up too.

Also, if Six Flags Great America was flat after adding a Holiday in the Park event that seemed very successful then that's terrible and if Magic Mountain was really only up 2.6% after going to a 365 day operating schedule then that sucks on an impressive level.

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Re: 2018 Theme Park Attendance Report - TEA / AECOM Theme In

Postby A.J. » Wed May 22, 2019 7:43 am

There's certainly a margin of error, and not all parks submit their attendance figures (though many do, apparently). But I'm not sure I agree with your skepticism - this is an industry association publication, not something from a magazine like the Golden Ticket Awards. They explicitly market it as being usable for reference in the business.

That being said, I wish they went a little further, because for all we know, Cedar Fair's net one percent growth could be because the smaller parks like Dorney Park, Worlds of Fun, and / or Michigan's Adventure may be completely stagnant, or even negative. But we only see the top 25, so we can only make educated guesses there.
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Re: 2018 Theme Park Attendance Report - TEA / AECOM Theme In

Postby coasterbill » Wed May 22, 2019 7:55 am

I'm sure they're in the ballpark and I'm not really calling out the TEA report the Great America and Magic Mountain numbers, I'm just saying that (assuming they're true) they seem concerning.

Do we know what companies report their numbers to the TEA? I know every year there are claims that the Disney numbers are way off.
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Re: 2018 Theme Park Attendance Report - TEA / AECOM Theme In

Postby grsupercity » Wed May 22, 2019 7:57 am

Didn't Cedar Fair report that Knotts hit 6 Million last year?
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Re: 2018 Theme Park Attendance Report - TEA / AECOM Theme In

Postby Canobie Coaster » Wed May 22, 2019 8:01 am

Unless I missed it (or their attendance was too low), are the Dubai Parks not covered in the regions on this report?

I'm not surprised based on their future, but the SeaWorld parks had quite the jump.
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Re: 2018 Theme Park Attendance Report - TEA / AECOM Theme In

Postby coasterbill » Wed May 22, 2019 8:12 am

grsupercity wrote:Didn't Cedar Fair report that Knotts hit 6 Million last year?


Yes. They said that on their first quarter conference call.

Maybe they were counting Soak City in that, but according to the TEA report that park only did 405,000 guests. If that park did 405,000 and Knott's did 4,115,000 then there's still about a million and a half guests (or more) that are unaccounted for.

Either Cedar Fair is doing something super crazy like counting the people that visit Knott's marketplace (possible) or something is off here.

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Re: 2018 Theme Park Attendance Report - TEA / AECOM Theme In

Postby A.J. » Wed May 22, 2019 8:31 am

Canobie Coaster wrote:Unless I missed it (or their attendance was too low), are the Dubai Parks not covered in the regions on this report?

They placed outside the top 25. They're under the "EMEA" (Europe, Middle East, Africa) section. A blurb:

At present, the number of visitor attractions in Dubai is large, relative to the size of its market. It is comparable to emerging markets in Asia, such as China, in that it has grown its leisure sector at a very rapid pace, but without the equivalent of China’s vast, resident population.

So basically, the UAE has the attractions, but not the population (nor the tourism).
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Re: 2018 Theme Park Attendance Report - TEA / AECOM Theme In

Postby CoasterAuditor » Wed May 22, 2019 9:55 am

It's honestly shocking Six Flags had a 5.3% jump while Cedar Fair had a 0.7% increase. Wonder what would make up that discrepancy since they're all more regional parks in nature?
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Re: 2018 Theme Park Attendance Report - TEA / AECOM Theme In

Postby coasterbill » Wed May 22, 2019 9:56 am

Six Flags bought 5 parks last year and added tons of operating days at Magic Mountain and Six Flags Great America.

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