Andy and I are both thrill seekers that love roller coasters. While at a party, my friend Craig and I started discussing Cedar Point, an amusement park in Sandusky, Ohio that Michiganders frequent. Since we both grew up in Michigan and have been there several times but neither of our significant others had been there, we decided to organize a road trip.
Being the travel organizer of the group, I started looking into hotels that we could stay at on Friday night, allowing us to get up early and head to the park right when it opened on Saturday. This is a popular strategy and the prices of all hotels within the vicinity of the park reflected this. Never accepting to overpay on a hotel, I continued to dig because I knew that there had to be a better option.
Staying at a Cedar Point Property
As I searched more, I discovered that Cedar Point property guests, are allowed admission into the park an hour earlier than the general public. Additionally, I saw that guests get a free parking pass at Cedar Point as well as discounted tickets to the park. Now they had me intrigued.
The savings started to add up quickly. Each Cedar Point park pass was discounted $10 and our two free parking passes saved us an additional $30. The four of us saved $70 just by staying at an on site hotel. This didn’t even include the perk of getting into the park an hour early. I was officially sold.
Because this was a pretty last minute trip, most of the hotels were booked, but Breakers Inn Express their lowest tier hotel had availability. This worked perfectly as we were due to arrive late Friday so just needed a place to crash, take a quick shower and head out to the park in the morning. Reading reviews online, I was a little leery about the hotel, but once we arrived I breathed a sigh of relief as it was not nearly as bad at the reviews made it out to be. Although it was a little dated, everything was clean which is the most important thing for me. My biggest gripe was that the mattress was pretty old and a little springy, not a huge deal for a 1 night stay.
Our Day at Cedar Point
The next morning we woke up early and headed to the park. We followed advice that I read online and we were at the gates 30 minutes before the park opened so we would be at the very front of the line. Once we entered we ran to Gate Keeper the newest coaster at the park. Less than five minutes in line and we were on. From there we continued to run to all of the other coasters that typically have long lines and were able to have quite a bit of fun before the park started to fill up.
Getting spoiled by short lines, we all decided to spring for the Fast Lane Plus pass. They only offer a limited number per day, but you get to cut the line a little bit, allowing you to go on more rides during the day. It was a little pricey at $80 per person, but we decided that the time we saved by not standing in line was worth it. It was AMAZING. I don’t know that I can ever go back to waiting in line again! We rode every ride that we wanted several times and never spent more than 30 minutes in any line. As a note, they actually did cut off the sales of these passes and part way through the day there were “sold out” signs. If you have any interest in these, I would recommend getting these early in the day.
All in all it was a great weekend. I highly recommend staying on site at a Cedar Point resort in order to get into the park early.