Vote of the week: Over, under, around or through?
File this under "First World theme park problems."
You've lucked out and are enjoying a day in a nearly-empty theme park. The crowd's so much lighter than expected that the parks' employees haven't had the chance (or bothered) to take down the serpentine queue chains blocking your path to an attraction's entrance.
What do you do?
Do you go around the chains, like an obedient theme park visitor, wasting time walking back and forth on your way into the ride? Or do you take a shortcut?
If you opt for a more direct route, do you swing your leg up over the chain to climb over it, or do you hunch down and scooch under to make your way toward the entrance?
Or, do you take the "former theme park employee" option and just start unclasping chain lengths to open a direct route by yourself? It's Vote of the Week time.
I have a feeling that one's answer to this question probably reveals something about our approach to much more than just visiting theme parks. Debate away in the comments, and, as always, thank you for reading and spreading the word about Theme Park Insider.
I voted for go over it, but I always check when I do this to make sure I am not by-passing someone who has chosen to go through it. I have been tempted many times to re-arrange it, but then I think I might be causing the cast members unneeded problems (perhaps it was set up that way on purpose), so I just step over.
Just walk through it, for several reasons, (1) It really won't take you very long (2) I'm not lazy (3) Setting a good example for my kids and (4) it's like a labyrinth with a fun ending :) Not a big deal
I will unchain it, walk through and replace it the way I found it. It is not my job, so I don't feel that a guest should "rearrange" the path.
I'm short, so it's easier (and safer) to go under rather than risk tripping.
It depends on the height of the chains. Sometimes we go over, sometimes we go under and sometimes we go through - but we NEVER go around.
I go under, mainly for 2 reasons:
I had a similar experience at Six Flags New England last Saturday. The ride queue for Bizarro was very short and while there were no chains in the area, there were a number of metal partitions (I'm sure there's a name for them but I can't think what it is) which served as barricades. The first couple of times I bent down and ducked under several of them to enter the ride; after that I got tired of doing this, as my back isn't in the greatest of shape anyway, and went the long way following the entire path to the stairway for the loading station.
I also will unchain, walk through, and re-attach the chains after the last person in my group goes through. I know that the queues are for large numbers of guests visiting that attraction, but if there is no line and I re-attach the chains before entering the ride, what's the problem?
I go over the chain, only because I have long legs. But if I'm with my kids, we'll go through it, and make it a game, a race. I've been tempted to rearrange the chain, but I also teach my kids to not play with the chain, so that sets a bad example to them. There is nothing worse than being smacked with a chain while standing in a line.
I'm a rearranger, but only in parks where I know the queue is shortened on slow days. I won't mess with a queue in a park that I'm visiting for the first time or a queue that typically doesn't get shortened, and will instead walk the length (it's good exercise afterall). While in some instances the chains may be there because there weren't enough employees to adjust them or they just forgot, while in other instances, those chains may be in place deliberately for big crowds expected later in the day or they just don't want to continuously adjust the chains...I like to do my part when visiting a theme park to make it a better place. I even find myself picking up trash or moving a bottle from the trash to the recycling at park I visit frequently.
I've done all the choices. If latch is simple, I unhook it and walk through. If chain is high, I go under. If chain is low, I swing legs over. If 'long' way is not too long, I just walk the cattle chute. Never, though, do I cut in front of people walking the long way in front of me. If someone cuts in front of me, I just walk past them until I get to my rightful place in line. I don't rearrange it ever.
Too out of shape to duck under.
I usually go around it... it's only a few seconds "lost" and I'm in decent shape so the extra steps aren't too bad. But sometimes, I just unhook and go through, but I make sure I rehook it.
Over is out of the question because it's impossible to do it with a wheelchair. Around is my last option. Either under or through. Hey, Shrek chose through ;^)
Actually I think the answer to this question says more about your height/leg length/clumsiness. I'm short and I have an easier time ducking under rather than hiking a leg over queue ropes.
If it's a chain that is easy to remove, I'll unhook it, step past, and replace it as it was. Otherwise, I just walk through the switchbacks. I only climb over or duck under when it is a significant shortcut and the rest of my group is doing it. I will not line jump anyone, however, so if someone in front of me goes around I will follow them.
30 seconds of annoyance isnt worth the risk of some jobsworth security guard deciding I'm queue jumping.
There is one queue I loathe. The Batman ride in Saint Louis has this long annoying high fenced winding path that goes through a park. It is not until you get into the "junk Yard" area that the fence turns to pipe framing.
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