De Efteling in Kaatsheuvel (NL) -one of Europe's largest and oldest theme parks- asked to research 'waiting experiences' to later apply the findings on (one of) the designated locations in the park. This project started of with a close analysis of the situation as it currently exists on these locations and the resulting experience visitors have.
PEOPLE ARE VERY CONSCIOUS
TIME, GOAL AND PLACE
The waiting area is a transition area. An intermediate. You are not in the park anymore and not in the attraction yet. It plays an important role in guiding the visitors to their destination. Therefore it is key to make it function like a smooth transition from the park to the attraction.
In te current situation being in the waiting area means:
Being packed in a (closed) space /
moving slowly /
notice of how many people are in front of you /
notice of the distance to go /
being stuck in a mandatory route.
This situation evokes:
the feeling of being in a cattle shed.
In order to counteract on this negative waiting experience, the following aspects are of main importance: movement / change / suspense / space.
In the current situation the waiting area is designed to take up as little as space as possible, while there is plenty more room to use.
Using more space provides the opportunity to eliminate the meandering route en lenhthen the track.
The bob sled track is located in a beautiful area, but you can hardly see it from the queue. The route is made as small an area as possible. The area which the bob sled track covers, lends itself well to extend the route and create more space, resulting in an other experience: You're on your way, but you do not know how long to go, how the path will proceed further and what you will encounter along. In the meanwhile you feel and hear the bob sled roar.
Guidance: Coen Bertens, Frans Goenee, Robert Jaap Jansen, Peter Koppelmans, Jochem Musters, Olaf Vugts, Karel Willemen