For theme parks, customer experience is key.

It’s the difference between a magical day out and one that you would rather forget. But what is it that creates this experience, and importantly, keeps patrons returning time and time again? We explore our top six picks.

​1) Make sure it’s tidy

Bins bins everywhere

Nothing ruins a magical experience like the visible presence of rubbish. It’s a simple thing, but it can’t be overlooked. This starts with making sure that rubbish bins (or trash cans for our American friends) are abundant.

Positioning is also important. Reducing the distance between bins will minimise the chances of guests dropping rubbish on the floor. Don’t go overboard though. You don’t want to be known as bin world.

Don’t forget to take them out

While you can hope customers will do their bit, it’s ultimately up to your theme park staff to keep things humming. No one likes an overflowing trash can.

As with many of these mundane tasks, a potential answer lies in technology.

Disneyland employs an ingenious solution to their rubbish requirements. Each bin is fitted with a sensor which buzzes unfortunate Disney employees when it’s time to take out the trash.

Keep it clean

Similarly, surfaces in areas like toilets and food courts need to be regularly wiped down. Covid-19 might appear to be in the rearview, but that doesn’t mean we need to drop good habits.

As well as keeping pesky germs at bay, a clean park will help provide a great customer experience and protect your front-line staff.



2) Add a little magic (Learn from the best)

While Theme Parks aren’t exactly commonplace, there’s enough around to provide competition. So, standing out from the crowd is vital and no one does this better than Walt Disney World and Disney Land.

Sweet smells and sultry sounds

Simple touches like delicious smells being wafted through Disney Resorts help create a truly magical experience. Research from Harvard has found strong links between smell and our memories. Therefore, it’s easy to see how sweet scents like popcorn will help connect you to happy childhood times.

Similarly, ambient music is played across Disney’s different locations. Individual speakers are tailored to their area, using complex algorithms to dictate which spots are best for certain sounds. While you almost certainly won’t have the resources Disney does, trying to create an ambient experience with smells and sounds where appropriate will help immerse your guests.

Staff involvement

As you are almost certainly aware, staff play a big part in the overall Disney experience and are viewed as cast members. They are also famously banned from saying “I don’t know” to any question and are strongly encouraged to try and resolve any customer queries with a creative flair. 

We’re certainly not suggesting you dress up all your staff in funny costumes. However, ensuring that certain team members that have a flair for theatrics are utilised will help add something special. Failing that, equipping your staff with the right information so they can always be helpful should do the trick.


3) Make sure there are places to rest

A theme park may be mostly about rides, but that doesn’t mean they’re all that matters.

While roller coasters are fun, they can be exhausting. That’s why ample opportunities for people to people to take a break are vital.

Somewhere to order food

Even though spinning through the air at 100mph isn’t traditional appetite enhancement, people are going to get hungry. So, having well-positioned food courts is important for keeping customers satisfied. Many theme parks also have family-friendly restaurants. While you’re unlikely to go for the fine dining experience, they offer somewhere to relax for half an hour and grab a quick bite to eat.

Even though these well-placed eateries will provide an extra revenue stream. Reasonably priced grub will not only win you brownie points with your customers but also prevent them from sneaking in sandwiches to avoid spending £7 on a bag of chips.

Indoor shows

Providing a shaded area to sit down and enjoy a show is another opportunity to delight guests. These can range from fully immersive experiences, showcasing the latest audiovisual technology, to plays and puppet shows.

When you’re figuring out the tone of these shows, balance is key. While every group won’t of course have children, striving for a middle ground which keeps the kids entertained and gives parents a chance to switch off and recharge.

Untitled design

4) Manage queues

No one likes to queue. So, in order to improve the overall experience of your park, it’s important to find ways to make them more bearable. A good place to start is having a clear display at the front of rides with queue times so customers know how long they will need to wait. 

Once people are in the queue, you can also try to make them a bit more comfortable. Offering some seating and shade on more popular rides can go a long way especially when wait times are exceeding the hour mark.

5) Build a feature-rich, functioning app

Time spent at a theme park can be precious, with relatively high costs and not enough hours in the day. So, creating an app which allows you to make the most of this is a no-brainer.

If done correctly it can provide guests with a fully seamless experience, allowing them more time to enjoy what you have to offer.

Examples of good theme park app features include:

  • Map of the park with geolocation
  • Food ordering services
  • Ability to buy tickets
  • Queue times
  • See special offers

A great example of this is Alton Towers, whose fantastic app features all of the above and holds a 4.7 rating on the Appstore



6) Have a lost and found process that works

As you might have guessed, the last point on our list is our favourite subject. Lost property.

The nature of theme parks means that you have people a) moving around a great deal and b) hurtling through the sky while doing twists and twirls.

This constant flux combined with aerial acrobatics unsurprisingly results in many misplaced items. If your lost property process isn’t up to scratch, then you risk turning a great day into a frustrating experience for your customers.

Using NotLost’s state-of-the-art software, you can ensure that this doesn’t happen. It allows for the simple logging of items via image recognition software a self-service portal for customers to make enquiries.

This means that everyone saves time. Firstly for your guests but also for your staff, allowing your team to spend more time on the important things.

When Alton Towers started using NotLost’s property software they found instant results and a 20% drop in time spent handling lost and found enquiries.


“NotLost offers us a modern solution to managing our lost property processes. It was simple to implement, is easy to use and saves significant time and hassle for our team. Our guests get a better level of customer-service and we are returning more items of their property.”

Sales and Customer Service Manager, Alton Towers


Find out more

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