What theme park fans can do in 2018 to make visits more enjoyable for themselves and others – Press

With the New Year upon us, let’s talk about what we can do, as theme park fans, to make 2018 a better year for all of us.

It’s easy to feel like sheep when you’re queued with thousands of other fans to hand over hundr of dollars for a day in the parks. But, in reality, we are the ones in control of the theme park industry. If we don’t spend that money, parks can’t stay in business. If something a park is doing makes you unhappy, why keep voting for that with your money?

Loyalty should be mutual. If you aren’t feeling it coming back to you, stop giving it to a company. And that’s what theme parks are – companies. I get that visiting a park can be an emotional experience. Fans develop beloved traditions of visiting a park over the years. That’s a large part of why so many of us love visiting theme parks.

But, ultimately, this is business. If a company isn’t doing enough to win your businesses every time you visit, then look elsewhere. No matter how many parks you have visited, there are countless other amazing themed experiences waiting for you around the region, the nation, and – if you can afford the travel – the world.

If you do try a new park in 2018, and you end up liking it, I’d recommend stopping in their guest services office and telling them what drew you to their park. We human beings have very limited defenses against praise. When someone wants to compliment us, we tend to set aside all skepticism and listen. But our defenses against criticism are amazing. Everyone in the customer service business learns quickly to tune out the “I’m never coming here again!” speech. Your story about why a park has earned your business is far more likely to be sent up the management chain than your rant about the park that lost it.

That’s one step to make visiting theme parks more rewarding for you. But what about for everyone else? Theme parks are some of the most crowded public spaces on Earth. We have enormous power to affect the way that the people around us enjoy their day. The Golden Rule applies. If you want to have a great day, then do what you can to make the experiences of those around you great.

Navigating the crowds at theme parks such as Disneyland often involves consideration of other guests if you want to improve their experience and yours. (File photo by Mark Eades, Orange county Register/SCNG)br / //// ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: Reporter and photographer Mark Eades of The Orange County Register spent an entire day and night at Disneyland sitting on the front porch on Main Street USA watching the activities and visiting with park guests. Date of photo: 11/17/15. – disney.frontporch – Photo by MARK EADES, STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER

Look around and notice how you are affecting others. Don’t stop in the middle of crowded pathways. Watch when you turn around so your backpack doesn’t bump people. Don’t use your stroller as a battering ram, even unintentionally. And if you don’t need it in the park, leave it at home, in the car, or at the hotel. Disneyland especially just doesn’t have the extra space anymore for people to pack for the day like they are summiting Everest. Let’s help each other out here.

I hate the cancerous notion that life is a zero-sum game and that anything you do for someone else puts you at a disadvantage. Greed is not good and looking out just for yourself simply means you’re a selfish jerk. Fortunately, the theme park fans I’ve met over the years include some of the the nicest and most considerate people in the world. Come with a smile and look for excuses to the fun with strangers. You can make magic happen just as much as the people who design and work in the parks.

So let’s make 2018 the most magical year yet. Together.