How does having a passion for theme parks affect your everyday life?

How can your love for theme parks and seeking out the biggest and fastest rides to ride affect your day to day life?

When it comes to seeking out the biggest and fastest coaster to sink your teeth into it’s fair to say that having a passion for the theme park industry is by far one of the most expensive hobbies to have,

We therefore ask the question how can having a real passion for such an industry affect you during your day to day lives? How does it affect how you perceive other aspects of your life? and how does it determine how you manage your finances when it comes to ensuring the bills are paid, however you’ve still got enough left aside to indulge in your passion and still get that adrenaline fix?

Over the last two years to two and a half years it’s very fair to say that here at TPI we have spent some serious dough on getting out there and experiencing everything the UK theme park industry has to offer as often as possible wherever and whenever we can!

There are those however who’s passion runs a lot deeper than just getting out there and riding the rides, and it’s those particular people who will effectively spend most of their hard earned cash on seeking out their next big thrill no matter the cost of the destination the park in question may be in.

Why have a passion in the first place?

To start to understand just why it is that many people choose to make this their number one pastime we must first consider that all important question – WHY?

In reality the answer is very simple! Escapism!

The main reason that people choose to indulge in visiting parks in the first place is to escape their everyday lives and indulge in something controlled, however at the same time DANGEROUS!

Well, we say dangerous, however in reality there is no such thing when it come to riding coasters, in fact the reality is that you are far safer hopping aboard a coaster and strapping yourself in than you are from the likes of say, driving or paddling in the ocean.

Although riding a roller coaster appears one of the most daring and yet exhilarating things to do, it is actually one of the safest pastimes out there,

There is more danger in the likes of cycling or skiing than there actually is in riding a ride and this is due to the mind boggling amount of safety mechanisms and precautions that go into place whilst designing a ride. Sensors here and rollbacks there, You really are as safe as houses when it comes to jumping onboard the likes of Stealth at Thorpe Park or even the Smiler at Alton Towers (especially since the 2013 incident).

Yes riding a coaster is perfectly safe, however whilst onboard the ride the experience of being there in the moment is quite something the opposite, and as you shoot through inversions at speeds unfathomed and hang upside down shrieking with joy as you do so there is one thing that remains the same – you experience a temporary state of euphoria, a hormone induced state of sheer joy and exhilaration which in the eyes of a true enthusiast, can’t be beaten anywhere else!

Is Escape really possible?

When visiting a park as much as it may not be the cheapest thing to do, for your mental health it’s probably in reality one of the best things you can do all round!

Theme parks as a rule pride themselves on creating immersive environments where one can step into them and forget everything else they have left at the door as they take charge of an alien invasion, or volunteer to take an ‘optical procedure’ taking on a role they wouldn’t otherwise choose to do willingly in their average everyday lives.

Theme parks also give us the chance to test our own limits, conquer our own fears and astound even ourselves as we do things we otherwise wouldn’t have thought we were capable of doing.

The reason we say this is due to the fact that even though the attractions and environments with the parks are controlled they offer something which no other situation in our day to day lives can offer – freedom of the need to control our environment.

The reason we say this is that when you step onto a ride or attraction, or even enter a ride queue line you have already made the decision to let go and trust in whatever lies ahead. By doing this you really are in essence experiencing true escape, therefore proving that escape really is possible.

There is far more however to ‘escaping’ than trusting in a ride operator to do their job!

The true sense of escape comes from the immersion you will experience within these attractions!

This will be achieved through such techniques and triggers such as visual stimulus (themeing), scents and aromas (Aromaprime scents in most cases to be more specific) and themed audio at every turn (good old IMAscore to name but one source) to name just a few.

It is through immersing your senses and making the choice to ride that in so doing you really do escape your everyday lives and experience something truly unique that you won’t find the likes of anywhere else.

So What's the cost?

In reality the cost for indulging such a passion comes from more than just your finances!

It comes from the way you plan your time. the amount of dedication to travelling you are willing to give and having the sheer patience to accept that even after making say a 3 to 4 hour drive things just may not go as you planned them to be.

The financial impact however can be managed quite effectively as this is purely down to you to decide just how much of your money you’re able to sink into such a hobby vs the costs of your pre-existing bills and other financial commitments.

Even though it’s important to take a little me time every now and then do something you love (which in this case is visiting theme parks and attractions), it’s also more important to remember that family and your living situation comes first.

This means that you should always prioritise existing bills and outgoings over taking a day trip to your favourite park, no matter how dedicated an enthusiast you may be!

Visiting theme parks can also become a very physically and mentally draining task at times and as well which therefore means that you must be be willing to stand for prolonged periods of time, walk great distances and navigate your way around parks of varying sizes (Alton Towers, we’re mainly thinking of you here!).

There is so much more to the cost such a passion can have here than the dent it will (100%) put in your wallets or purses.

For those with true dedication here however (such as ourselves) none of the above matters and this is due to the end result which will always lie in sight – the sweet release from the everyday droll and the sheer rushes of pure adrenaline which lie instore from stepping aboard our next white knuckle ride.

So, is it all worth the hype?

The simple answer here in our opinion is yes, absolutely!

This is however a matter of perspective of course and some may even argue the complete opposite, however if you’re tired of typing up the next finance report, or answering one call after the other to angry customers after the next best deal (just a few suggestions of course as the true list of day to day stresses are far greater than those imposed by your work life) then why not book a day out at a park on your next day off and see what the fuss is all about?

There really is nothing better than driving to a park, entering through the turnstiles and leaving all your troubles at the door as you rush from one world to the next ever anxious of the pure joys (and terrors) that will very likely lie instore!

Who knows? You may even find yourself having a little fun along the way!

So go on, let go, accept the challenge and live life on the edge!

The effects of such a pastime may be great, however the rewards that lie instore for those brave enough to test their nerves indulging in such a passion are far greater than the impacts could ever be!