New Jersey’s Six Flags Great Adventure faces a proposed class action that alleges the theme park’s plan to modify operations as the state lifts coronavirus restrictions will deprive season pass holders of already paid-for unlimited visits.
The 14-page complaint notes that absent the pandemic, a season pass would provide the holder with unlimited access to all Six Flags theme parks on public operating days, admission to the annual “Fright Fest” and “Holiday in the Park” events and free tickets for friends on select days. Due to the stay-at-home orders and social distancing restrictions implemented amid the coronavirus pandemic, however, many theme parks have had to close or drastically modify operations, according to the suit.
As the economy slowly reopens, Six Flags Great Adventure has plans to resume operations on a modified basis, per the case. The complaint says the defendant intends to implement a registration system for guests that would limit the number of individuals allowed in the park each day, as well as require all customers to wear masks in order to enter.
The plaintiff argues, however, that this plan deprives season pass holders of the benefits for which they’ve already paid. In light of this, Six Flags Great Adventure refuses to issue refunds to season pass holders, continuing to “give itself a windfall financial benefit in curtailing business operations” while withholding proposed class members’ money during a time of widespread unemployment, the lawsuit claims.
“At a time when over 40 Million Americans are unemployed, Defendant’s actions not only fail to deliver to consumers the full scope of their purchase, which would allow them to temporarily escape to enjoy the features of the Park, but deprive them of recovering money that they may need for other uses because of the COVID-19 Pandemic,” the suit reads.
According to the lawsuit, the plaintiff bought four season pass tickets with meal plans to Six Flags Great Adventure for the 2020 season for nearly $400. The case says the park’s new restrictions, in particular the requirement that all guests wear masks, is problematic for her four-year-old, who suffers from asthma and cannot wear a mask for very long.
The plaintiff, whose refund request was denied by Six Flags, argues that while face masks are a reasonable request given the pandemic-induced circumstances, they are not a practical safety measure in an amusement park loaded with rides and attractions. The complaint says it is “likely if not certain” that a mask worn by a guest will come off or be lost entirely if worn on a ride.