Pros & Cons Of Visiting Parks With Non-Enthusiasts


I don't know about you guys, but since getting stuck into this hobby pushing on a decade ago, I now find myself visiting theme parks with non-enthusiasts very rarely. For most, a day out at a theme park is a once-a-year kind of deal, and growing up surely I'm not the only one who would spend weeks pretty much forcing my friends to come visit Thorpe Park with me, arranging tickets and booking transport and lord knows what else. It was just all so much effort to get that theme park fix, that once I found myself a like-minded community I pretty much gave up on visiting with my non-enthusiast friends altogether. But that's not to say visiting with non-enthusiasts doesn't have its virtues, which is what I wanted to talk about today. Here are the pros and cons of visiting theme parks with non-enthusiasts!

Pro - You get to sit back and enjoy those first time reactions
I've spoken on here before about my love of taking people onto rides for the very first time - especially if it's a ride that has a 'bit' that I'm waiting for it to build up to. Whether it's the room spinning in Hex, the trick track on Winjas or the backwards section on Expedition Everest, I absolutely adore sitting back and watching my group experience the joy of those little moments for the very first time - I guess it's the closest I can get to experiencing it for the first time all over again myself!

Con - They do it all wrong!
Of course, there's no 'right' way to do a theme park, but when you visit as often as we do you do find that you get yourself into a little routine when visiting your closest parks. For instance, I know that when I go Alton Towers I'll start off my day in Forbidden Valley for a few rounds on Nemesis, move forwards to Duel, then go on from there. It's just...how it always ends up happening. It's always a little irksome when you visit with a group who are so excited to be in the theme park that they just run and join the queue for the first big ride they see (ie, the same one everybody else runs to and now has a massive queue). Urgh!

Pro - You do stuff you wouldn't normally
The other side of the same coin of my above point, visiting with people who don't go as often as you do means breaking routine - and breaking routine means that you actually find yourself doing attractions that you wouldn't normally spend time doing. I find this particularly true if I'm visiting with friends or family with young children. I'd never normally step foot in Cloud Cuckoo Land - and actually couldn't tell you the last time I'd been round there since I was a kiddie myself. It's nice to spend time in areas of these parks that I wouldn't normally, and get to experience attractions from a totally different perspective.

Con - Time management
Oh dear, this is a big one for me. Enthusiasts operate like a well oiled machine - we know where the toilets are, we know when to take breaks, we usually have snacks on us or know the best time to get food to avoid the queues. It's all tactics to ensure maximum riding time is achieved with minimal faffing. You kind of have to just hold your breath and let all that go out of the window when visiting with non-enthusiasts. In my experience people just don't put as much time and effort into planning a day out at a park as you or I would, so you do sadly end up spending a lot of time queueing for coffee or having a little sit down, because let's face it, your average joe just isn't used the fast-paced day out at a theme park like we are!

Pro - You get to be the expert
Now this one depends entirely on your character, but I do secretly love being the one everybody asks the questions to. Which ride is best? What should we do next? Where should we eat? Visiting a theme park, especially one you know like the back of your hand is the perfect excuse to spend the entire day being an insufferable know-it-all and getting away with it because at the end of the day your knowledge is helping your group get the very most out of their day, and nobody is going to moan at you for that!

Con - Toning it down
And again, there's the flipside of that point. As much as it's fun being a little smarty-pants and having all the insider info on the best hour of the day to nab some pizza/pasta buffet, you do have to constantly check yourself and make sure you're not boring everyone to death whilst you waffle away on a tangent about why such and such retheme of such and such ride isn't a patch on what it used to be and how John Wardley must be turning in his grave which he isn't obviously but you get my point. Mate, they don't care about the history of this ride, the just want to shoot some zombies and couldn't care less that you don't like the new neon paint. Let them have their fun and save the bitching for when you're surrounded by other enthusiasts so we can all get in on the moaning action!

What about you guys? Can you think of any more pros and cons of visiting parks with non-enthusiasts? Let me know in the comments!

Talk later xoxo,

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