Just Published: Theme Park Insider: 2016 Year in Review
How does this sound to you?
The park has some big black marks to overcome. ("Hey, folks, come to the park that was so bad it went bankrupt in one year!") Given that, to me they need to be at least a hair cheaper than everyone else just to get some warm bodies through the gates to show people they have a product worth taking in. Then hopefully interest would spread.
Because right now the park just doesn't seem to generate much interest -- notice how few comments there are on this site, and that many of them are from the same few posters? And remember Robert's survey about interest in visiting the park as Hard Rock last year versus interest in visiting this year, or ever? There were very few respondents indicating interest in this park.
To persuade me to go at this point you'd need to practically hand me a ticket and offer me a ride to the door. $40 is just an immediate turn off for me.
I don't think that Freestyle's "black marks" are attributed to the quality of the guest experience. I had a great time at Hard Rock last year. I thought it was a little overpriced, but was still pleased with what they had to offer. People should give the new owners a chance to fix things, because the product was actually pretty good. The thing that Freestyle has to overcome is the aura of failure that was cast by the previous management and the bad press that ensued.
The failure of Hard Rock Park will always be an enigma to me. I fancy myself somebody with a mind for business, and I just can't understand how someone could screw it up that badly. They built a good theme park with good attractions in the middle of 15 million tourists, and managed to flush it right down the toilet with horrible business decisions. It's almost as if it was done on purpose.
Still having trouble getting my mind around setting a base price high so you can offer lots of discounts, though. Is the idea that people who grab a coupon at a Burger King (or whatever, just an example) will think they've gotten a steal, and that will make them more motivated to visit than simply having an inviting base price? Or is it an issue of collaborating with hotels and other attractions and such, which I can better understand, maybe.
Anyway, again I wish the park well, despite my criticisms. I've always loved Myrtle Beach, and a good B&M coaster is among my favorite things in life, so if the park succeeds it's a win-win all around.
If you really think 40 bucks to get in is high, then hang out in the parking lot or near the front gates. Then get your group and add as many people needed to make up a total number of 15 or more. This way, your entrance price is lowered by 10 dollars to a 30 dollars entrance fee. Maybe this is better for some???
My main concern would be that the employees are just as well trained and friendly as when I went to the park under the "Hard Rock" name!!!
The reasoning for offering a lot of discounts is two fold. One, it lowers the price and entices people to come. Two, it serves as additional advertising for the park. Anyone who's been to Myrtle Beach has seen the endless amounts of coupon books, directories, and information packs. They are in every hotel, in a lot of restaurants, and even on the street corners in newspaper stands. I make it a habit to grab a few coupon books when I roll into town, because there's some good stuff in them. If Freestyle has gotten involved with the Chamber of Commerce and all of the other companies that issue the coupon books, then there will surely be discounts.
I didn't see one Hard Rock Park coupon in any of those books last year. In fact, I'm not sure I saw many ads for them at all in those books. Very few hotels even offered tickets to Hard Rock, let alone discounted ones. My wife and I made the mistake of looking at a timeshare, and even they weren't offering tickets. I look for all of that to change this year.
They will be allowing all active US Military, Coast Guard, Firefighters, Police and Emergency Medical Technicians into the park for free from May 23rd through May 31st. You must show valid Military or Service ID.
The general admission price will be $39.95 for adults and $29.95 for kids (3-9).
The other promotion is that if you a Carolina resident (North or South) will be able to get a $10 discount off of the general admission price by showing a valid state ID from May 23rd - June 14th.
The park will be holding a number of prize giveaways every hour on the hour on opening weekend. The park will be open from 11am - 10pm on opening weekend and then follow the odd hours the rest of the area attractions follow for the remaining weekdays that week by opening from 4pm to 10pm at a discounted price of $24.95 for adults and $19.95 for kids. Carolina residents can still get their extra $10 off in this time period meaning if you are a Carolina resident you will be able to get in that week for $14.95.
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