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dougdrummer

Ski Areas vs. Theme Parks

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I used to ski a lot up until a few years ago.  I've been to almost every ski area in the northeast.  I got to thinking about the differences between ski areas and theme parks.  One of the main differences is that I have never had to pay for parking at a ski area.  Why is that the case, when theme parks charge outrageous fees for parking?

 

Both amusement parks (except in FL and CA) and ski areas are seasonal and have to make their money during a limited portion of the year.  One could argue that ski areas have even fewer months due to weather restrictions, although some now have opened water parks and other attractions during the warmer months.  A place like Great Adventure is now open 8-9 months a year with HITP and FF.

 

So why don't ski areas charge $25 for parking?  Are they not physically set up to be able to have controlled access to parking?  Or do they make enough money on ticket prices, rentals and lessons?

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I think all it would take is one to start charging and the rest would follow. It’s just like the park’s, airlines, cruise industry, etc. - it just takes one brave (and greedy) one to get the ball, or in this case the snowball, rolling.  

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First of all,some ski areas have been adding things like ziplines to make money in the off season.

Second of all,ski areas don't have expensive attractions like Kingda Ka to maintain or overpriced intellectual properties to pay royalties for.

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On 1/8/2018 at 8:46 PM, ericthewanderer said:

First of all,some ski areas have been adding things like ziplines to make money in the off season.

Second of all,ski areas don't have expensive attractions like Kingda Ka to maintain or overpriced intellectual properties to pay royalties for.

 

Good points, but they do have the added costs of building and maintaining ski lifts, as well as making snow.  They also probably have more liability insurance since an injured person is getting taken off the mountain almost every day by the ski patrol.

 

As far a logistics are concerned, most ski areas have multiple scattered and non-paved parking lots.  So this is not setup to have one toll booth controlled access.  They also have separate day and night skiing sessions, and most now have a separate tubing facility.  However, I've been to many sporting events such as football, baseball and soccer, where they utilize several parking lots.  For those events, they station a person at the entrance of every parking lot to collect the fee.  On a side note, my cousin tells me that the parking for the New England Patriots is now $60 for one game.  He is a season ticket holder, so I'm not sure if he has to pay that each time.  For GA season ticket holders, a parking pass seems like a bargain!

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