By Sue Rodman
I love amusement parks, but I hate long lines and throngs of people. If you’re like me, then here are some tips to get the most from your visit to Six Flags Over Georgia.
1. Arrive Early. This is true for ANY amusement park. Most people run late, so although they may try to get to the park when it opens, fewer people do. Add in time to park and walk to the entrance and you’ll find that the crowds are lightest at opening. At Six Flags you can pay a premium to park near the entrance ($15 – $20), but if you’re looking for bargain parking ($5), you’ll have to walk a bit, so figure time in for parking and walking to the entrance. Remember, you want to be ready to walk into the park at opening, which means your tickets are purchased, bathroom breaks are finished and sunscreen is on.
2. Be there 30 minutes before opening. The operator I talked to mentioned that often the park will open the main gate 30 minutes prior to the scheduled opening of the park. It helps to thin the crowds at the gate. Generally, they’ll have the Georgia Cyclone and Georgia Scorcher open early as well. This is a great time to get hit these rides and likely ride again and again. During our latest visit, this tip rang true, so get there before opening for no-line roller coaster rides.
3. Head to the Back of the Park. Most people meander to the right when they tour an amusement park. Those in the know may head straight to the large roller coasters like Goliath. Those with the inside scoop head to the back of the park and work their way to the front. If you’re a roller coaster fan, go to Batman first. Why? Because Batman is more popular than Superman. Why Batman instead of Goliath? Because Goliath is a high capacity ride that is much easier to load than Batman, or Superman. Plus it’s has a bigger loading station, more seats, and a longer ride, so it gives the ride operators more time to load and unload. Batman’s station is smaller by design, you’re made to feel like you are in the bat cave. If you follow this suggestion, you’ll have covered three of the 11 roller coasters (probably multiple times) within the first half hour of the park opening!
4. Go Mid-Week or Shoulder Season. Mid-week is the least crowded time to visit Six Flags Over Georgia. If you must come on the weekend, Sunday is a better day than Saturday. Shoulder Season, April, May, Sept. and Oct. aren’t as crowded either. Stay until closing if you can, lines will thin out after dinner.
5. Visit Water Rides in the Morning. Thunder River has a long line in the afternoon once folks get hot and are looking to cool off. Visit Thunder River in the morning and you’ll avoid the longest lines. Hurricane Harbor, Six Flags Over Georgia’s Water Park has a similar traffic pattern. Folks generally wait until the afternoon to get wet, so visiting this attraction in the morning is a best bet.
6. Map Out Your Day. The best way to avoid lines is to map out the day prior to your visit, here’s a Six Flags Over Georgia Park Map. Know before you get off one ride, where you’re going next. Get a show schedule before heading out and determine what shows you want to see and when. Inside venues are great for mid-day when it’s hot and you need a break.
7. Eat at Off-Times. To avoid long lines at the concessions, and to enjoy the shorter lunch time ride lines, plan to eat a bit early or late. Either eat no later than 11:30 or after 2 pm. You’ll skip the food lines and enjoy slightly shorter ride lines during peak dining hours. If you want to save a little money, bring picnic. Six Flags does not allow coolers, but you can exit the park (make sure to get a hand stamp for re-entry), have a healthy lunch and return.
8. Good Eats. Daddy O’s BBQ was a favorite of several folks surveyed. Daddy O’s is located near the Dare Devil Dive rollercoaster. The Lickskillet Section of the park is food court type set up. If you have lots of different tastes, this may be the best place for variety. Six Flags does boast healthy options, but I’m a bit skeptical on how healthy you can really make chicken fingers and how lasagna and brownies can be gluten free.
9. Riding the new virtual reality coaster Revolution at Dare Devil Dive. We tested this ride on a Friday in June. Cool technology, but there are some things you need to know before you go to help avoid lines. Read our review post on the New Revolution at Dare Devil Dive.