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“Frightening Experience”

Six Flags Great America
Ranked #2 of 14 things to do in Gurnee
More attraction details
Attraction details
Fee: Yes
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: This amusement park, located halfway between Chicago and Milwaukee, has over 100 rides and attractions.
Useful Information: Activities for young children, Activities for older children
Chicago, Illinois
Level 4 Contributor
24 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
“Frightening Experience”
Reviewed 13 December 2010

(1) Customer Service: Customer service at Six Flags Great America is non-existent. Out of the major park operators Disney, Universal, Cedar Fair Entertainment Company, Busch Entertainment Company (now the Blackstone Group), etc…Six Flags Entertainment Company has to be the worst at customer service. A few issues I encountered with customer service:
a. I ordered my tickets online and I never received an email receipt needed to print tickets from my desktop printer. There is an option to print your tickets right at the time of purchase on the web so make sure you do!
b. If you call the park expect to be pushed to voicemail. After leaving a few messages regarding my email receipt, I did receive two return calls advising me they would email my receipt. I am still waiting for that receipt. I saved the voicemail from the Great America administrative office and played the voicemail for the guest relations office when we arrived at the park. They printed tickets for $3.00 service charge.

(2) Rides: Make sure you only carry the bare necessities! This includes water incase you get locked in the park because the concession lines look like lines to a soup kitchen, no joke. If you are a girl, do not carry a handbag. I cannot stress this enough. We were a group of two couples and my girl friend was allowed through, with a handbag, but the other couple was stopped. The other girl actually had a smaller hand bag and was advised she would not be allowed on the Superman roller coaster. I could go on about how this entire situation was mismanaged but to get to the straight to the point the wait for the ride was two and half hours and the lockers only lock for two hours before they automatically unlock???? That is if you are lucky enough to find one that is not jammed. I felt bad for the high school kid who was managing the lockers who continually had to explain this to people who were told the same thing.

(3) Conclusion: I could analyze how bad operations are at this park but there are too many concerns. If you go here are a few things to take with a grain of salt:
a. Buy the flash pass. This system is poorly executed but it will make your experience at the park better then if you don’t purchase it for the day. We purchased it after we waited two and half hours after the first ride. Make sure you either purchase the gold or platinum pass. You can reserve times for the rides.
b. Park near the exit. If you decide to stay until close you will not escape the parking lot! The traffic management is not well thought out.
c. Expect to be treated like you are in a Chain gang. The park demographics have changed tremendously over the past 20 years and with the park’s new low cost park ticket strategy it’s evident. The employees are very well disciplined with limited authority so my assumption is there is not a lot of employee empowerment, like Disney, to think outside the box and resolve issues.
d. There is nothing to do for adults. Whereas other parks have “adult theme” areas such as restaurants and bars to keep parents entertained while kids play there is no such place here.

4 Thank John C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Manchester, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
135 reviews
92 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 256 helpful votes
“Great when both parks are open!”
Reviewed 2 December 2010

Me and my friend came here for a day trip and we stayed in a hotel the night before (Gurnee Grand I think and it had themed rooms - very cool!). We bought our tickets through the hotel as they were cheaper than buying them at the entrance. We were told you were not allowed to bring food and drink onto the premises but we couldnt resist as we were on a tight budget and planned on spending the whole day there. We packed up 3 bottles of water, 2 x 1ltr bottles of energy drink, a couple of Coronas, chips, bread & hot dogs and a small bottle of tomato ketchup HAHA. We did get our bag searched but surprisingly they didnt find anything!!!! The bag was super heavy and the security woman who carried it to the security guy did mention it was really heavy and asked if we had a body in there. he searched the bag, didnt find anything and sent us on our way, MUAHAHA!! I thought they would have found something and looked harder but they obviously dont really care. We did put the stuff at the bottom of the bag and wrap some stuff up in our towels but they still could have checked - quite happily for me they didnt though!! We went pretty early so there were no queues and some of the rides werent even open. They have lockers situated throughout the park as well as refreshment centers. We managed to get on all the rides, many more than once (I think we were lucky with the timing as it was even in school holidays!) apart from the biggest ride their that kept braking down. The other great thing was the water park was open - extremely busy though!!! Most people had just dumped their stuff in the pathway and you could barely walk anywhere. If you want to get a seat, make sure you are one of the fisrt in the waterpark! So we had a great day there and would definately return.

1 Thank Camacho87
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level 3 Contributor
13 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
“Great time, great value”
Reviewed 1 November 2010

I went back to Six Flags for the first time in 10 years, and I have to say I had an amazing time. For those people who are complaining about the price, you clearly haven't done your homework. My husband and I each paid $70 for the season pass for 2011, which got us into the part for the remainder of 2010. We went twice over halloween weekend (which would have been $36.00 per person online if we bought day tickets), so basically our 2011 pass was free. Parking is pricey, but again, if you buy the season pass for $70 it is worth it.

As far as the park, it is very clean. There was no garbage anywhere. Also, during fright fest there were a lot of staff members dressed up scaring people throughout the park. The food is pricey, but that is to be expected with any theme park. You can get readmission though, so I would reccomend leaving the park and coming back. There is a burger king and mcdonalds right outside of the park gates.

The rides are a lot of fun. I love Iron Wolf, The Demon and Dark Knight. There are lines on holiday weekends, but if you go during the week, or early in the season you can pretty much walk onto the rides.

If you want a fun time, this is the way to go!

1 Thank thelemalove93
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chicago, Illinois
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Saw LIVE was a total ripoff”
Reviewed 23 October 2010

4 of us paid $15 each to see Saw Live rated a '5' scariness level and recommended by several of the Gurnee Six Flags staff as the best haunted house on site. It was a complete joke and waste of time and money! It was not at all scary, creative, or remotely fun. My adult friends and I could have created a better haunted house in under 3 hours when we were 8 years old. Saw live was the worst haunted house any one of us had ever experienced: very disappointing. It should have been free (especially for flash pass users!) at the very least!

With that exception, the rest of our day with flash fast was enjoyable. We skipped much of the line on Raging Bull (awesome), Batman and Superman (both awesome). We also saved some time on the Demon and Giant Drop...I'd say with flash fast our average wait was 15min vs 1.5hr without the pass, and most of the rollercoasters were pretty fun!

Just save your money and go to a different haunted house than Saw.

Thank sk151
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Toledo, Ohio
Level 4 Contributor
30 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“Get there early!”
Reviewed 19 October 2010

I enjoyed many of the roller coasters at this park. They seemed smoother and less jerky than many other roller coasters I have rode. We got to the park just as they were opening. We were able to get through most of the roller coasters in a very short time. After a couple hours the lines really built up, but that is to be expected on a weekend. The parking is a little expensive at $20, but I went online to buy the tickets to the park and got a really good deal. They also had a very good deal on season passes online.

Thank ekaty
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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