Pros and Cons of a Solo Theme Park Trip

Pros and Cons of a Solo Theme Park Trip

Here’s the scenario, you’ve got a day off (yippee!) and you’re thinking, ‘What do I want to do today?’. That little voice in your head is telling you to go to a theme park. Great idea! Let’s see who is available to join you. Disappointment ensues when they all say they’re busy. ‘Dammit!’ What to do ey?

You could chill out at home, spending you day off wishing you were at a theme park…

Or you could make a day of it and make it a solo trip?

In a situation like this, it can be incredibly daunting to travel to a theme park by yourself, especially if it is your first time giving it a go. Here are the pros and cons of visiting a theme park as a solo traveller!

PRO: You can plan the day how you like it

That’s right. You have the freedom and flexibility to enjoy the day, however you want. You don’t need to worry about frequent toilet breaks (if you have those sorts of friends!) or worrying about wanting to re-ride a ride without your friends. If you want to go ahead and spend all day whoring your favourite coaster, you do that. Love photography? A solo theme park trip can give you the chance to walk around the park at your own pace and take as many photos as you feel like you are ‘dragging your mates’ around the park with you. You want to try out a brand-new food outlet, go right ahead. Sometimes it can be like a breath of fresh air to enjoy a theme park by yourself.

CON: First time moments can’t be shared – unless over social media

If you are visiting a theme park for the first time, those first-time moments can’t be shared in real time. Grabbing that first-time cred? You can’t truly share that moment with  no-one around. Yes, in this day and age, we have the power of technology and social media, but it’s not really the same, is it? Nothing beats getting a cred with your friend (or other half) and seeing your reaction – especially when it bloody good cred too.

PRO: Single Rider Queues are the best!

Whenever you are travelling solo, you have the power to use single rider queues and make the most of your day. You don’t need to worry about stupidly busy queues as you can simply bypass this and walk straight on (not always guaranteed!). Of course, if the theme park you visit doesn’t enforce single riders or even have them, you will have to join the queues. Just keep yourself busy with your phone or why not be funky and bring a book?

CON: You don’t have a photo buddy

Now, you might be thinking, a photo buddy? I am on about that faithful friend or ‘Instagram husband’ who takes your photo. You’ve found a fantastic spot for a photo opportunity, but wait, there is no dedicated photographer in sight and you’re on your own. Your only option, to take a selfie. And it’s never quite the same is it? Selfies only work for certain opportunities, not all of them. And before you say it, a selfie stick is not really a good alternative – unless you want to risk your phone being stolen… No thanks!!

PRO: Appreciating the parks in their entirety

As a geek, I know that I want to see an entire park, especially if it is a new park! Now, I don’t mean, ticking off the creds and having a small walk into each area. I want to explore the beauty of a theme park – unless the place is truly awful, in which case it would be a quick cred grab. Sometimes, if you have friends with you, this is not always easy to experience. They may not share the same values as you and will be focused on riding the coasters/rides. As a solo traveller, you could find areas that you never knew about before. Take as many photos as you want.

CON: It can be lonely…

This point is a given. You cannot truly avoid the loneliness of travelling solo, no matter how hard you try. Not to get too science-y or technical, but as humans, we are sociable creatures. We thrive on interaction with other people and chatting with strangers is not quite the same as chatting with your mates. Of course, that doesn’t mean to say that you are cut off, you do have your mobile phone on you. However, think about those parks that are secluded – phone signal won’t be great which can make communicating difficult to achieve. And if you are in a foreign country, there is the difficulty of the language barrier. Always a good excuse to learn a new language though? It’s not all doom and gloom, make the most of chatting to the ride hosts/ops or if you’re feeling brave, chatting to people in queue lines if you find a friendly face. You never know whether they are a solo traveller too!

This is a small list off the top of my head, do you have any other pros and cons when embarking on a solo trip? Let me know in the comments!

That’s all for now.


The pros of visiting a theme park in the rain!

The pros of visiting a theme park in the rain!
1173659_10151845367364800_1508483313_nYou’re a true theme park geek if you can work out where this photo was taken! *wink*

It’s worth noting that as I’m writing this post, the weather outside is beautiful, blue skies and glorious sunshine. It’s not hot by any means, come on, it’s still February. Doesn’t really make sense, right? Trust me, I was thinking about the weather, and how much I want to be at a theme park – closed season, winter, boredom have taken their toll and now I’m craving a theme park trip – and I thought, let’s write a post about why you SHOULD still visit theme parks even when the weather is a bit miserable.

#1 Queue lines are SHORT!

Generally, I have found that theme parks can be so quiet when the weather is raining (or if rain is forecast for the day!) It puts most people off venturing outdoors and it’s perfect. Queue lines are manageable. Of course, if the weather is torrential rain, there is the high chance a coaster or ride will shut until the weather subsides or clears up, but most of the time – especially in the UK, you can still ride the coasters in the rain. Might be a bit painful but no pain, no gain?

#2 Quiet theme parks means more re-rides

You know when you visit a park and there’s that one ride you just want to re-ride all day. Okay, if the weather is raining or what not, you might want to think twice depending on the coaster (those launch coasters hurt in the rain people!) BUT there’s nothing stopping you from doing what you want to do. And if you have a 5-minute queue, you want to make the most of those re-rides. I know I would, within reason of course.

#3 Good excuse to immerse yourself with dark rides

Depending on which park you’re at, you could spend the entire day sheltering from the rain with dark rides. I can’t resist a good dark ride, even if it is nice to have a sit down for a few minutes. It’s also nice to take in the ambiance and immerse yourself in the experience. Unless it is a truly awful dark ride, Giester Rikscha I’m looking at you, in which case just spend your time laughing at how awful the ride is. If you’ve got geeky friends, talk about how much it needs improving or what you would change.

#4 It’s fun!

I don’t know about you but I swear you can have more fun in the rain at a theme park than when it is sunny. Could just be me, hey ho! I tend to find it more fun when it starts raining at a park. The panic of where to go next without getting too drenched, or the feeling of quick thinking about which ride you want to go on next – do you brave riding a fast coaster with rain pelting on your face or do you choose the safe option and shelter in a building. If you’re feeling crazy, why not do a water ride? There’s nothing to stop a water ride from shutting in the rain – unless you’re Storm Surge at Thorpe Park.

If these reasons aren’t enough to get you out when it is raining then you do you. Rain won’t ever stop me from visiting a theme park – I’ve had some good times in the rain, and some painful times – try riding Stealth at Thorpe Park front row in the heavy rain, then your face will feel pain! Although having said that, I could tell you to try riding Joris en de Draak in Efteling, in the cold, in the heavy rain… Now that was an experience. Photo proof below of me ‘hiding’ the pain. It was fun, honest.


That’s all for now!