Some 85 per cent of UK visitors say they often or occasionally decide against buying food and drink at a theme park because of queues, while 67 per cent take the same view with regard to buying merchandise, according to a new report.
Research by Omnico has found that UK theme park visitors would spend up to four times as much on food, drink, and merchandise if theme parks installed consumer-friendly technology.
UK visitors who said they would spend more if such technologies were in place, would leap from spending £31 to £177 per head on food, drink and merchandise if mobile apps, self-service kiosks and robot deliveries were available, the research revealed. The figures are part of the Omnico Theme Park ROI Barometer, surveying 661 consumers from the UK who have visited a theme park within the last two years, along with 2,672 from the US, Japan, China and Malaysia.
Half of UK visitors said what they spend on food and drink would grow by up to a factor of four if they could use mobile phone apps to order in advance, while 46 per cent say their spending would quadruple if they could use self-scan phone apps or touchscreen kiosks for ordering inside food outlets. Some 42 per cent would spend up to four times more on merchandise if the technologies were available.
“Our research confirms that advanced point-of-sale technology will transform the revenues of theme parks,” said Mel Taylor, CEO of Omnico. “There are a number of technologies available today that can help resolve the issue of queuing, or in some cases remove the queue altogether. However, before theme park operators make their investments it’s important to understand not just how much business can be lost, but whether spend per head would increase with the right solutions. Our ROI Barometer research reveals just that.”
Retail spending, for example, would increase from £16 to £41 per person, if mobile self-scan apps and self-service kiosks were available in park stores. And expenditure on food and drink would increase from £15 to £43 if the same technologies were implemented in fast-food outlets or restaurants.
If virtual reality guides and experiences, or artificial intelligence-powered recognition systems were used to make their visits easier, 41 per cent of UK visitors said they would spend up to four times more than average on an admission ticket.