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Legoland owners bring in dynamic pricing policy so park will cost more at busier times

Legoland Windsor (Matt Bird Photography)
Legoland Windsor (Matt Bird Photography)

The owner of the Legoland and Alton Towers theme parks will charge visitors more at peak times.

Merlin Entertainments, which also runs Cadbury World and the London Eye and Madame Tussauds in the capital, is bringing in dynamic pricing that responds to the weather and visitor demand.

It already charges different prices for peak and off-peak visitors but will be able to respond more quickly and lower prices if they are less busy than expected or raise them if a day becomes unexpectedly busy.

Merlin said the changes would ensure “the peak period experience is optimised by avoiding overcrowding".

The group’s chief executive, Scott O’Neil, said dynamic pricing would “protect the guest experience” during busier times of the year by managing queues, where wait-times can be more than an hour for top attractions.

The opportunity to buy tickets at discounted prices during off-peak times, which could be a rainy weekend in March, makes the experiences “available and accessible to all”, Mr O’Neil explained.

He likened it to “happy hours” used in bars, as well as hotels and airlines which typically hike prices for travel during peak times but offer cheaper prices off-season.

“It is not a new concept, but our focus is on two things that matter most; the guest experience and making sure that we are accessible and value-based for families,” he said.

Merlin revealed its sales soared to a record high last year as more visitors flocked to city-centre attractions.

Total revenues jumped by 8% to £2.1 billion in 2023, compared with the previous year, and it had 62 million total visitors across the globe.

About a quarter of all tourists to London visited one of its attractions last year, and 40% of those visited more than one, according to the company.