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RobF

Merlin Entertainments

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1 hour ago, Coaster said:

Thorpe were charging £12 for a hotdog and chips when I looked in at the new place early last year, no wonder people take their own!

However you also had a 20% MAP discount....... £9.60 fair for a themepark in line with stadium /event pricing.

Next thing you know people will be demanding a Tesco on park for their £3 meal deals.

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20 minutes ago, Glitch said:

However you also had a 20% MAP discount....... £9.60 fair for a themepark in line with stadium /event pricing.

Next thing you know people will be demanding a Tesco on park for their £3 meal deals.

£9.60 for a hotdog and chips is extortionate even for a theme park.

 

That same venue used to serve full BBQ meals for less than £8 (before discount).

 

You can't really blame people for taking their own food when the quality of park food has decreased and the prices increased massively, IMO.

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4 minutes ago, Coaster said:

£9.60 for a hotdog and chips is extortionate even for a theme park.

 

That same venue used to serve full BBQ meals for less than £8 (before discount).

 

You can't really blame people for taking their own food when the quality of park food has decreased and the prices increased massively, IMO.

£8 for a beer at the o2 is extortionate but I still pay it. Just find it strange that this is a Thorpe park fan forum but all everyone seems to do nowadays is moan.

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22 minutes ago, Glitch said:

£8 for a beer at the o2 is extortionate but I still pay it. Just find it strange that this is a Thorpe park fan forum but all everyone seems to do nowadays is moan.

I disagree, isn't the idea of a fan forum to discuss all aspects of a subject (in this case Thorpe) whether good or bad?

 

Being a fan of something doesn't mean you have to defend or be positive about everything they do, IMO.

 

If Thorpe was in a brilliant state I'd be singing their praises, but equally it's just as important to talk about the aspects that aren't good.  And unfortunately, there are IMO quite a lot of those with Thorpe currently!

 

I won't be a PR machine for the park and say that everything's wonderful, that's for brand advocates and marketeers not fans.

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Thorpe's food prices are hardly cheap for the quality of the food on offer. Some places are okay, but most aren't.

 

In terms of pure price, it's about in line for what I'd expect from a theme park though tbf. Doesn't make it right though.

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2 hours ago, Coaster said:

 

If Thorpe was in a brilliant state I'd be singing their praises, but equally if it's just as important to talk about the aspects that aren't good.  And unfortunately, there are IMO quite a lot of those with Thorpe currently!

 

Exactly

 

I like to think the mood on a forum dedicated to any park would reflect the current state of the park in question. If Thorpe park was doing brilliant like it was from 2000 up until the swarm with a promising future ahead of it, then these forums would be buzzing!!

 

The reality is that with the park being right in the doldrums and has been on a massive decline for years with poor investments, along with no clear direction in terms of where the park is going,aswell as rides just abandoned unfortunately will lead to negativity. Hardly surprising when arguably the most enjoyable thing the park has given their guests since the swarm is a damn bouncy castle.

 

Just the nature of the beast. I refuse to believe that there is some form of witch hunt towards Merlin because when they get it right with things like Wicker Man and scarefest at Alton Towers then people will praise them with the praise they deserve and likewise when they mess up then they will get the criticism in the hope things get better.

 

People don't complain because it's fun or in fashion. People (myself included) do so because they know that Thorpe Park can do better and in those golden years I mentioned HAS done better. 

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https://www.towerstimes.co.uk/blog/2020/04/25/merlin-entertainments-reveals-financial-impact-of-covid-19/

 

Relevant paragraphs:

Quote

After all of the above, Merlin are estimating that they will still have average net cash outflows of approximately £50m per month, which is in the context of a cash position of £520m for the Merlin group and its parent company, Motion Acquisition Limited, as at the end of March. With this in mind, Merlin note that there is a material uncertainty on their ability to continue as a going concern, which is to say that they cannot be completely sure that they will still be able to operate in 12 months’ time. More detail is given in the group’s financial statements in relation to this, which reveal that Merlin’s ‘base case’ assumption is that the current situation will continue until mid-May, but they then anticipate the lifting of governmental restrictions on businesses opening and the ability of citizens to move freely. It is then assumed that once attractions open, ongoing revenue would recover to over 90% of normal levels after two months. Under this scenario, the company’s forecasts for the next 18 months indicate that it would have sufficient funds to meet its liabilities.

 

However, Merlin have also given consideration to a ‘downside’ scenario that models a four month shut-down lasting until mid-July 2020, where it would be more than five months before ongoing revenue would recover to over 90% of normal levels. In this situation, without any new sources of funds, the Group’s currently available liquidity could be exhausted by September 2020. With Merlin also announcing the issuance of €500m of new debt via the wider consortium group, this could suggest that management are now expecting that reality may be in line with the more pessimistic forecasts. Despite this uncertainty, Merlin note that their shareholders remain “highly supportive” of the business and “optimistic about its long-term prospects”.

TL;DR: If this ends in Mid-may, Merlin are ok.

If (more realistically) the shutdown ends Mid-July Merlin may run out of money in September (unless they raise 500 million euros worth of money).

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Merlin have suspended new pass sales along with renewals, effective today.


Probably a mixture of new pass products / Covid uncertainty.

 

https://www.merlinannualpass.co.uk/compare-passes/renewal-passes


 

Quote

We have made the decision to temporarily remove all Annual Passes and Membership products from sale from the 24th September 2020. 

Following your helpful feedback from our recent customer survey, we are currently revising and updating our Merlin Annual Pass product line-up to ensure all our Passholders have the best possible experience and great value at our attractions.

Please be reassured this does not affect current Passholders in any way and you can continue to use your pass to visit our attractions. Please remember that to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 our attractions are currently operating at reduced capacities. Therefore, pre-booked tickets are required to visit all our attractions to help us adhere to strict social-distancing measures to keep us all safe.

We are aware that some Passholders have not been able to book their preferred slots for our attractions and have taken a number of steps to address this, including adding availability for Passholders and creating afternoon passes. Please be considerate of the Passholders community and only book slots for times when you definitely intend to visit.

We will share updates on our social media channels and website as soon as passes go back on sale.

 

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They put out a survey a week or so ago asking for opinions on passes with different perks/limitations so wouldn't surprise me if they completely change the types of passes they offer.


This included things things like weekday only passes, can only visit certain attractions such as 3 of the theme parks, after 2pm only passes,  different amounts of discount + family and friend offers.

 

Will be interesting to see what they come up with. Definitely seems they are slowly taking away some of the perks 

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To be honest, regardless of what they say, if it was truly because of the issues with people not being able to pre book dates, then they would have removed passes sooner. And they wouldn't have removed the £1 booking fee either.

 

Whether because of Covid or not, I expect they're planning on changing the structure of the passes. Would fully expect to see the cost of what was a Premium pass increase and be rebranded, and perhaps see cheaper options with further limitations. 

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The prospect of a Merlin pass restructuring is imminent, especially given the covid situation where much growth and earnings have been lost.

 

We could easily see passes introduced which only enable selected days, times, attractions and perks introduced. With the VIP removed for the foreseeable it’s not impossible to see the Premium botched up as the top offering. 
 

Expect more up-charges especially for events I would say.

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Could very well see the Silver (standard), Gold (premium) & Platinum styles appear - probably though the Platinum will be less restrictive in visits but not VIP replacement, that would probably be per park add-on like Legoland’s Club VIP / Thorpe’s unlimited Fastrack add-on. 

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