With Howl-O-Scream 2017 behind us it is time to start thinking about the next big seasonal event at Busch Gardens Williamsburg: Christmas Town. I had the opportunity on Monday to speak with VP of Marketing Dan Dipiazzo and Senior Communications Manager Ron Vample about the upcoming ticket sale.
The bottom line is that Busch Gardens Williams is tweaking the dynamic pricing structure, which debuted last year. I believe the changes they have made should improve the already effective system.
Similar to last year, BGW will offer dated tickets at market-driven prices. Here are the details, as they were explained to me:
As has already been announced, the park will kick things off with a flash sale on dated tickets for five days from November 02 to November 06. Starting at 8:30 AM on Thursday, tickets will be available for as little as $15 and ranging up to $25, depending on the date. For context, last year prices started between $16 and $24. Dan assured me that these prices will be lowest for single-day CT tickets. The calendar below shows flash sale dated ticket prices.
On November 07 all dated ticket prices will increase by $10, resulting in $25-$35 base prices. Those tickets will still be cheaper than the maximum cost in 2016 of $38. They are, however, more expensive than this year’s $24.50 Pass Member undated tickets. The projected November 07 prices are all listed in the calendar below.
From November 08, through the final night of Christmas Town dated ticket prices will be adjusted daily in response to demand. So, while prices on very slow days will remain low, the cost of tickets on popular days will increase. Dan emphasized that unlike last year, on-line ticket prices will never be as expensive as those purchased at the gate ($49). So, even if you are making your purchase on the same day as your trip, it is worth your while to buy them on the BGW website.
If you do not want to purchase dated tickets, you have other options:
- The regular Christmas Town Fun Card is available on-line for $49.
- The Pass Member-exclusive Christmas Town Pass costs $39 on-line.
- General admission Christmas Town tickets will be on sale at the park for $49.
- Pass Members can purchase single-day, undated tickets for $24.50.
- There will be a special promotion with Dunkin Donuts, offering $39 undated tickets.
- Undated tickets will also be available through Busch Gardens Williamsburg’s regular resellers (MWR, etc).
The intent behind the dynamic pricing is to manage the historically high Christmas Town attendance levels, by providing incentives to visit at less popular times. Hopefully, people will opt to go to the park on the days with cheaper tickets, which will spread the crowds across the event, reducing the number of guests on the busiest nights.
Although there are undated tickets and passes available, I believe that more than last year the dynamically-priced, dated Christmas Town tickets should be good—not perfect—indicators of nightly crowd levels: The higher the price, the more people you can expect to be at the park.
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