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What if theme parks charged for every ride again?

Disneyland: and with an inexpensive park ticket?

From Daniel Etcheberry
Posted September 1, 2010 at 4:05 PM
My mom says that in the sixties Disneyland cost like 5$ and they charged for every ride (less than a dollar for each ride).


Comments in chronological order. Most recent at the bottom. Scroll down to respond.

From Mike Gallagher
Posted September 1, 2010 at 5:15 PM
There are still some parks that do...Knoebels comes to mind. Also the "new" Luna park at coney Island and Adventurers in Brooklyn. The ride piers along the Jersey Shore too. I don't know of many others, but because those types of parks are usually small regional parks, it's probably due to my geographical location. I just don't get to read about those parks in areas other than my own.

From Bob Miller
Posted September 1, 2010 at 5:41 PM
Doesn't Kennywood use tickets. I saw a sign in a picture saying for one of their rides that it required 2 tickets to ride

From Mike Gallagher
Posted September 1, 2010 at 6:34 PM
Might have been one of their "nostalgic" signs. I'm not 100% sure, but I don't believe there's any options at KW other than P.O.P.

From Phil B.
Posted September 1, 2010 at 8:39 PM
I imagine the overall quality of people would lower, and a lot of riff raf, for lack of a more adult type of term, would spew into the parks and do more loitering than anything else.

We all hate the gate prices, but it does help to ensure more of a quality experience when you know that the people who are in the park, paid a lot of money to be there and want to take in as much as they can, instead of just loafing around cause it beats walking around anywhere else for the money. As it is, theme park guests can be pretty clueless, unruly and have a terrible case of entitlement. Bring in a few thousand more guests each day and I'm sure the parks would need to increase security as a result.

Still, it would be nice to be able to get into a park like Epcot for a reduced price if you weren't doing any of the rides, and were just there for a dinner reservation.

From rick stevens
Posted September 2, 2010 at 12:27 AM
DL was actually $4.50 to get in in the 60's and early 70's. There were kiosks selling tickets for each ride, or you could buy the ticket book. I actually like the all inclusive option better. The individul rates are great if all you want to do is people watch and maybe ride one or two rides. You have to remember that the price of the rides was based on their popularity and thrill index.

From Rob P
Posted September 2, 2010 at 3:10 AM
Let's all hope that they don't re-introduce the pay-as-you-go book of tickets.
Mainly because it would introduce a degree of elitism. The thought of going to Disney for the day and then not being able to go on rides that were too expensive would bring tears to many an eye.
The whole ethic of one entrance fee to enable access to the whole park has proved a good one and a fair one.
I'd hate to see kids being left out while their friends went on a ride simply because they couldn't afford enough tokens. It might be ok for fairgrounds but it's unthinkable at Disney in my view.

From Victoria Jurkowski
Posted September 14, 2010 at 1:24 PM
The single price ticket makes you think less about the rides you go on. for example, i went to hershey park this summer. we paid the group rate since we had a large group going, and it was $33 a person. we went on about 10 rides that day since it was crowded. thats over $3 a ride. if we had paid the actual price, $53, that'd be over $5 a ride. if i was paying $5 every time i got on a ride, i would probably have done less rides, especially with the lines. but paying it all at once makes me feel entitled to go on as many rides as i can, wait in long lines for rides that are 'worth it' and not think about money, since i already paid my upfront fee. parks probably make more money with the upfront fee, especially in busy seasons when people get on less rides and when adults come to parks with children and dont go on as many rides.

From Derek Potter
Posted September 14, 2010 at 2:12 PM
The origin of the pay one price to get in comes from Coney Island in the early 1900's. Owners found out that enclosing the park and charging a gate admission greatly reduced the number of "unsavory" people in the park, not to mention it increased revenue. It also distributed lines for attractions more equally and increased quality of experience. A hundred years later, parks still do it for those exact reasons. Disney experimented with the ticket system with Disneyland, but ran into the same issues.

Pay one price is a better business model for the vast majority of amusement/theme parks. I don't see it ever going back to a ride ticket or pay per ride system. A smaller park with a handful of ride owners might keep the ride ticket model, but most parks that are growing will eventually have to shift to the pay one price.

From Terri Pierce
Posted September 16, 2010 at 8:10 PM
Haven't read the topic mind you,
But I wouldn't like this at all. Maybe Im just young and never experienced this but I feel it reduces the number of people in the park and just makes things easier. You're not having to bother with petty cash every time you turn around. I just wouldn't like it plain and simple.

From Rob P
Posted September 17, 2010 at 2:05 AM
That was a good post by Derek. I hadn't even considered the social reasons for enclosing a park and charging a single admission fee.
It makes good sense all round, then, to keep it that way.

From Flavio de Souza
Posted September 17, 2010 at 12:30 PM
When I first went to WDW, in 1980, it had both systems. You could either by an "all included" pass, or by an entry voucher that included some rides tickets divided into categories (big atractions, median attractions, small attractions), and you could buy extra tickets next to the rides, if you want.

Tivolli park in denmark still works like that.

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