Popular California Theme Park Leaves Guest Without Answers After $500 Mistake

in Knott's Berry Farm

A family riding the Calico Mine Train at Knott's Berry Farm theme park

Credit: Knott's Berry Farm

Ask anyone who’s visited a theme park in the last few years–the prices are skyrocketing. Last year alone the Disney parks raised the prices of their various annual passes by about $100, charging some guests over $1000 for an experience guests are starting to call “lackluster.” However, one Knott’s Berry Farm guest experienced an issue that almost cost them $500 and left them unable to visit the park.

Calico Mine Train at Knott's Berry Farm, California's first theme park, at night
Credit: Knott’s Berry Farm

As prices rose last year, so did complaints about the declining Disney experience, as guests took to social media to share experiences with overcrowding, line jumping, rude cast members and guests, and losing various perks that passholders once had. It led many to claim that they wouldn’t be renewing their pass for another year as disappointment swept through the various Disney parks-related online communities. However, Disney wasn’t the only park affected by price increases, as Universal also raised theirs last year as well.

A full car on Ghost Rider at Knott's Berry Farm
Credit: Knott’s Berry Farm

Basically, it’s now come down to what park can offer the biggest bang for your buck when it comes to annual passes. Recently, a Knott’s Berry Farm passholder took to Reddit to share their costly problem with the park’s season pass. u/sdboardgamer shared to the r/KnottsBerryFarm subReddit a post titled “I’ve paid $500 for a pass that doesn’t work.” Basically, they explain that they renewed their Knott’s pass online back in November, upgrading it from the former Platinum Pass to the new Prestige Pass.

I’ve paid $500 for a pass that doesn’t work
byu/sdboardgamer inKnottsBerryFarm

However, when they went to the park on New Year’s Day, the pass wasn’t working for several passholder options, including parking, VIP rest area, and a food add-on ticket. Eventually, through the confusion of several managers and the help of guest services, they discovered that somehow the pass has been assigned to Cedar Point, a completely different park.

Located in Southern California, Knott’s Berry Farm is part of the Cedar Fair Entertainment Company, who also owns the Cedar Point park in Ohio. Unfortunately, while Knott’s is open year-round, Cedar Point is more seasonal, operating between May and October each year. u/sdboardgamer shared their problem with this while trying to figure out their pass with the guest services team at Knott’s Berry, who said “They were unable to fix it because they can only access passes for their park. They said all I could do is call Cedar Point to try to resolve the issue. They are closed until May.”

Guests ride Top Thrill 2
Credit: Cedar Point

It’s a weird mix up, a Knott’s Berry Farm pass renewing to Cedar Point, especially with the onsite park employees seemingly unable to give the guest assistance beyond “contact Cedar Point.” Thankfully, the guest did update their original post, saying that they received a message on Reddit from Accesso, the issuing ticket company, as well as a call from someone at Cedar Point. The issue was resolved with a full refund and the ability to reorder the pass through the Knott’s website.

Had the guest not taken to social media to share their issue, they may have been stuck with a useless pass until May with no way of stopping their pass payments or being able to use their pass until they could get the problem resolved. Knott’s Berry Farm is one of the biggest theme parks in California, behind Disneyland and Universal Studios Hollywood, while Cedar Fair is perhaps the largest chain of theme parks around the country. It’s a disappointing mix up, and a costly one, as the season pass plus food add-on is roughly $500, or at a minimum $32 a month.

Knott's Berry Farm theme park in California
Credit: Knott’s Berry Fram

Despite the issue, the guest seemed hopeful at the resolution offered by the park and seems to be willing to continue visiting the park. Knott’s Berry Farm is home to dozens of unique family-friendly attractions and one-of-a-kind experiences and shows. Guests can see their favorite Peanuts characters, including Snoopy, and the park offers seasonal experiences throughout the year, like Knott’s Scary Farm and Knott’s Merry Farm.

Have you ever had a mix up with your theme park annual pass? 

Please note that the story outlined in this article is based on a personal guest’s experience. No two guest experiences are alike, and this article does not necessarily align with Inside the Magic’s personal views on various theme park operations.

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