Ten Top Tips for Visiting your Favourite Theme Parks in 2022!
Ah, closed season! That one time of the year when the parks are closed and theme enthusiasts go back into hibernation.
As the long winter months finally set in and we sit all wrapped up with the heating on full we look back at the season passed and all the good times we had
As a rule closed season does usually mean no parks to visit, however this year things are a little different.
The majority of UK parks are now CLOSED though until early February/mid March 2022.
With that in mind we thought it would be fun to share our top ten tips on how to get the most out of your 2022 season, and they’re as follows;
1 - Plan Well Ahead!
As much as most of you will probably do this without thinking anyway, it’s always prudent to plan your travels well in advance.
Map out where you want to be and when to ensure you optimise your schedule next season.
Doing this will ensure you make the most of your visits and ensures you have something to aim towards in the cold winter months.
It will also mean you have the motivation to keep pushing on in what are arguably the most depressing months of the year.
2 - Miss Opening Days.
Okay, before you shut this article down and call us nuts hear us out!
Opening day at any UK theme park is usually notorious for ride downtime and disappointment.
That being said, if (like us) you’re an enthusiast you’re not going to want to miss that first ride of the new season (that adrenaline boost is so satisfying!).
Blackpool Pleasure Beach opening weekend in particular has become the holy grail of theme park opening days.
This is due to the park being the first of the year to reopen it’s gates annually.
If this isn’t you though we would advise leaving it at least a week post opening before attending your favourite parks.
3 - Book Accommodation Quickly!
If you’re planning on any overnight stays next season then we highly advise booking them as soon as possible.
Blackpool in particular is one you will want to secure quickly due to high demand in the early part of the year.
The other reason is very simple – the sooner you book, the cheaper it will be (in most cases).
Resort hotels usually offer deals around this time of year too meaning you could potentially save yourselves a small fortune on most stays next season if you book now.
You may also want to book accommodation for annual events such as Scarefest and Fright Nights as soon as possible too as they tend to sell out well in advance.
Although the parks haven’t confirmed dates for their events just yet (and they won’t until at least the middle of next year), bookings still fill up quickly due to high demand.
It’s always worth noting however that there are other hotels available besides those onsite too.
In some cases they may even prove better value for money in the long run.
4 - Be Prepared to Queue.
With most new seasons comes the high chance of brand new additions to the UK.
For this reason many will want to be the first to experience them, and for that reason queue times WILL be high when they open.
New additions are always a huge draw for guests and with that being the case 2022 is no exception.
Although a little less than most years, 2022 still offers some major new additions to look forward to.
2022 sees the opening of a “re-imagined” Valhalla at Blackpool Pleasure Beach, the estimated opening of Flamingo Land Resort‘s highly anticipated brand new coaster and Farmyard Flyer at Paultons Park to name but a few.
It’s therefore imperative you expect queuing to be a normality next year.
If you are planning to visit any of the above openings then expect wait times and capacities to be high from the start.
5 - Take Your Own Food.
There’s nothing worse than paying over the odds for food and drink on an already expensive family day out.
For this reason we highly recommend taking your own food and drink with you whenever possible.
We also recommend you check each individual park’s policy on doing so prior to visiting.
Some parks (such as Blackpool Pleasure Beach) may require you to consume your own food and drink off site depending on the amount you take.
Taking your own food and drink will gain you significant savings and will leave you with more funds available to enjoy yourself on the day.
If you must eat at the park though we definite recommend you try to utilise a buffet option wherever available.
Buffets usually offer the best value for money and ensure you get your fill for less.
There are of course some times however when exceptions have to be made.
6 - Go Chashless!
We know, who even carries cash nowadays anyway right?
Although some parks & attractions such as Blackpool Pleasure Beach and The Dungeons have already gone cashless, it’s no secret that most are also heading that way too.
Some attractions even offer the option of a digital wallet. This enables visitors to pay cashless on the day using their phone.
Most places do still accept cash & card, however it’s always worth checking the park’s website prior to visiting to ensure you aren’t left short.
Paying cashless can also speed up transactions and reduce wait times on the day.
7 - Check Parking Options Well In Advance.
If like us you prefer to park closer to the attraction then we advise you prebook your parking well in advance.
Express Parking options tend to sell out very quickly, especially during peak seasons.
For that reason we would always advise you book you tickets and parking in conjunction with one another.
Also remember, you don’t always have to park onsite.
Some locations offer other parking options at a fraction of the cost (if not free).
Some locations may not offer parking though.
For this reason we would always advise you research the location you’re visiting well in advance.
This will ensure you are aware of other places to park should your chosen location be unavailable on arrival.
8 - Prioritise Your Annual Events.
Annual events can be some of the busiest times of the year to visit.
For this reason it’s best to prioritise the events you want to visit as early as possible.
Most events are very popular with all types of visitor and usually sell out very quickly.
It’s therefore best to choose the events you want to visit most and book those as soon as they become available.
This will also ensure you have the chance to budget for your visit well in advance too.
As much as they are enjoyable though, they can also be extremely draining.
With large crowds to contend with as well as long queues and increased demand for refreshment events can be hard going both physically and mentally.
It’s therefore worth baring this in mind when booking the ones you want to visit.
9 - Allow More Time for Travel.
In truth 50% of the day can (in some cases) be taken up by travelling.
We therefore advise you allow plenty of time on either side of your day when making your journeys to and from the park.
We also recommend arriving early and leaving later wherever possible.
Doing so will allow more leeway when it comes to parking and leaving without hitting huge queues of traffic.
If you’re using public transport though we do recommend you allow yourself as much time as possible on the day.
This will ensure you gain the most from your day and will allow you to feel more relaxed overall.
Always remember to leave when you feel ready. Never overstay if you don’t feel you want to.
10 - There is Far More Than Just Theme Parks to Enjoy!
Finally, remember that whilst it’s fun to visit the parks there are also other options available.
Attractions such as Sealife, The Dungeons and Pasaje Del Terror in Blackpool (to name but a few) often get overlooked in favour of the bigger attractions.
Although they may not offer rides, what they do offer they all offer in abundance and that’s fun.
If you’re after thrills then the Dungeons and Pasaje are definitely for you.
If it’s something a little more family friendly you’re looking for then Madame Tussauds, Sealife and The London Eye are all great options.
There is of course alot more to experience here in the UK besides the Merlin options.
Always research your location prior to visiting to ensure you optimise your time there.
The Dracula Experience in Whitby is our personal guilty pleasure!
It may be cheesy, but it’s so much fun too and not to be missed when visiting the idyllic seaside town!
We really hope this has helped you prepare for your next big year of theme park adventures!
In truth though, although the 2021 season is now at a close, 2022 offers so much to look forward to!
With just three months until Blackpool Opening Weekend, we can’t wait to get back out there and experience everything the UK has to offer in the new year!
We will still be making plenty of visits throughout closed season though.
For that reason there is so much still to look forward to from us here at TPI!
Thank you very much for reading guys!