Thrills, Chills, and Bills: Breakthrough Fees for Starting an Amusement Park!

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From the crescendo of screams that thrill visitors on roller coasters to the popcorn at the entrance, amusement parks offer both thrilling and classic entertainment for all ages. A 2019 report showed that global amusement park attendance increased by 6.7% compared to 2018. This demonstrated that the industry is in a healthy and growing state. If you are considering starting your own amusement park, you will find that there is a significant start-up cost associated with such a business. In this blog post, we will explain the different components of the cost it will take to open an amusement park.


start-up costs

Opening an amusement park requires a considerable amount of capital for land and property acquisition, insurance coverage, construction and facilities, as well as rides, attractions and security systems . Additionally, staffing employees, providing customer service, and launching a marketing campaign will all contribute to the costs of starting an amusement park.

Cost Amount (USD)
Acquisition of land and property ,000 – ,000,000
Insurance cover Varies considerably
Construction and installation costs 0,000 – ,000,000
Attraction rides and equipment 0,000 – ,000,000
Security and safety systems 0,000 – ,000,000
Food and Beverage Operations 0,000 – 0,000
Artists and employees 0,000 – ,000,000
Customer Services and Systems ,000 – 0,000
Marketing and advertising campaigns ,000 – 0,000
Total ,075,000 – ,000,000

The costs associated with starting an amusement park can vary greatly depending on several factors, including size and location. Aspiring amusement park owners are encouraged to do plenty of research and financial planning before committing.

Acquisition of land and property

Land and property acquisition is a major factor to consider when starting an amusement park. The overall cost will depend on the size of the project and the amount of assets that need to be acquired, but average costs can range from 0,000.00 up to million . The types of land and assets that must be acquired for an amusement park are numerous and can include raw land, parks, resorts, as well as land for parking, roads and attractions.

At its simplest, the budget required for land and property acquisition will typically include the cost of:

  • Buy the land itself.
  • Monitoring and site preparation.
  • Creating access points, such as roads and trails.
  • Add the necessary utilities.
  • Upgrading of existing infrastructure such as drainage, sewage and electricity.
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Another factor to consider is the cost of permits, licenses and rights needed to purchase the land or operate the business. These costs can range from ,000 up to hundreds of thousands of dollars, depending on the area and business requirements. Additionally, any taxes, assessments, or zoning variances must also be factored into the overall cost.

Overall, the cost of acquiring land and property can vary greatly. It is important to research the field and consult with professionals to help with project planning, budgeting and implementation. With careful attention and planning, the cost of land and property acquisition can be minimized and managed.

Insurance cover

For amusement parks, insurance is an essential part of staying in business. Due to the potential risks associated with operating an amusement park, the costs associated with insurance coverage can be incredibly high.

Insurance costs for amusement parks can range from .5 million to million per year , depending on the size and scope of the amusement park. This cost covers accidents, product liability, workers compensation and general liability. Amusement park owners should be sure to purchase sufficient coverage for any potential hazards that may arise.

Additionally, amusement park owners should be aware of any injuries or illnesses that occur on the premises. While most people won’t sustain life-threatening injuries, lawsuits can get expensive. To protect their park and their bottom line, amusement park owners must purchase insurance to cover medical and legal expenses related to injuries.

Other insurance costs include property damage protection. Amusement park owners will need to acquire coverage against losses due to fire, flood and other natural disasters. The insurance may also cover damage to attractions caused by visitors or space debris.

Amusement park owners should also consider insurance for their employees. Hiring staff to operate the park can bring additional liability issues. Employer liability provides protection for work-related accidents and injuries. The purchase of health insurance for employees will also be necessary.

With such a wide variety of insurance types and coverage plans, amusement park owners need to invest in the right policies. Insurance negligence can result in serious financial loss, as well as reputational damage. To ensure your amusement park is safe and secure, consider investing in the right insurance coverage.

Construction and installation costs

Opening an amusement park requires a significant capital investment. The exact cost of this can vary greatly depending on the size and scope of the park. According to the International Association of Amusement Parks, a conventional mid-size amusement park with a few dozen attractions can range from million to million in total expenditures. The following factors contribute to the construction and installation costs of opening an amusement park:

  • Construction costs: An amusement park will require several structures, including but not limited to house gates, ride and attraction buildings, rest rooms, decks, and employee buildings and of security. These buildings will have to be bought or built, which can cost millions. The median cost for a new ride is around million.
  • Land: The land on which the amusement park will be built must be purchased, leased, or donated. The cost for this will largely depend on the size of the park and the location, but can range from a few thousand dollars to a few million dollars.
  • Equipment: Many amusement parks will need rides and other attractions, all of which will come with hefty price tags. Rides, such as roller coasters and bumper cars, can cost millions of dollars each. Alternatively, some amusement parks are finding ways to reuse existing rides, both at other parks or from other types of facilities. In 2019, the average cost of a new attraction was estimated at .3 million.
  • Maintenance: To keep a playpen running, it needs regular maintenance. This means performing routine checks and replacing worn parts. This type of maintenance expense typically ranges from 1-5% of park construction costs.
  • Insurance: Insurance is a necessary requirement to operate an amusement park. Insurance costs can be substantial, but vary depending on the size and location of the park, as well as the types of attractions. The median price of insurance is estimated at .01 per square foot.
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In addition to these costs, there are also fees for utilities, taxes, and permits that need to be considered. This cost can add up quickly, potentially costing millions of dollars in total. Nonetheless, with careful planning and a well-thought-out business plan, the long-term benefits of opening an amusement park can be extremely rewarding.

Attraction rides and equipment

Opening an amusement park is a unique and exciting endeavor. Every amusement park needs rides and attraction equipment to make it an enjoyable experience for customers. Unfortunately, this equipment is not cheap. The overall cost of rides and amusement equipment for an amusement park varies widely depending on the type of equipment, number of units, and designer.

The cost of a roller coaster ride can range from ,000,000 to ,000,000. Bumper cars range from ,000 to 0,000 and electric karts range from 0,000 to 0,000. Other types of rides, such as water slides, can cost up to ,000,000.

In addition to the cost of rides, many amusement parks require other attraction equipment. This equipment may include Ferris wheels, carousels and Playland structures. These types of attractions can cost anywhere from 0,000 to ,500,000 entirely. Additionally, these rides must be maintained on a yearly basis and can cost several hundred thousand dollars per year.

Besides the cost of individual rides and amusement equipment, there are other start-up and operating costs for an amusement park. These costs may include license fees, property inspections and insurance costs. Additionally, the cost of marketing and promotional materials must be considered. Overall, the total cost for opening an amusement park can range from several million dollars to tens of millions.

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Security and safety systems

When it comes to opening an amusement park, visitor safety and security should take the highest priority. Ensuring a safe and secure environment for all customers and employees is imperative, as proper maintenance and implementation of safety and security requirements are essential to running a successful amusement park. The cost of safety and security systems depends on the size of the park, the location and the requirements of local regulatory agencies.

The cost of security and safety systems largely depends on the type of system chosen. For example, a basic monitoring system might cost ,000 while a GPS tracking system might cost ,000 – ,000 . Fire prevention systems can range from ,000 to 0,000 depending on the size of the park and the complexity of the system. Access control systems are usually priced at 0 – ,000 . The award-winning biometric technology could cost 0 to ,000 per unit. Intruder alarms and scanning solutions can cost an average of 0 – ,000 .

Also, the cost of installing and maintaining safety and security systems must be considered. Depending on the installed system and the complexity, installation fees can vary from 0 – ,000. The cost of regular maintenance and repair should be budgeted according to the manufacturer’s policy. Repairs to cameras, control panels, alarms or sensors can cost anywhere from – 0 .

Additionally, it is prudent to have in-house security personnel to ensure safety and security systems are maintained and functioning properly. The cost of an in-house security staff depends on the size of the park and can range from ,000 to ,000 per month.

Food and Beverage Operations

When it comes to launching a successful amusement park, preparing the perfect environment isn’t the only piece of the puzzle. A major contributing factor to the success of any park, especially an amusement park, is the quality and variety of options for food and beverage (F&B) operations. It’s what can make or break the customer experience at your park and can add significant expense to your ledger.

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Research indicates that when it comes to amusement parks, the average start-up cost for F&B operations is around .3 million , widening with the size of the park. This budget typically covers securing storage and delivery systems, setting up food service areas and staff training. This cost can be reduced slightly if you choose not to open a full-service restaurant on site.

Breaking down the total cost into smaller categories, you should expect the following:

  • Equipment: Estimated to spend 0,000 to .1 million on essentials, from dish machines, to counters and mixers, and ovens
  • Supplies: Items such as wedding supplies, janitorial items, uniforms and other essentials should cost around 0,000 to 0,000
  • Suppliers: You can expect to pay anywhere from ,000 to 0,000 to get reliable suppliers for all your F&B needs
  • Recruitment: Hiring experienced staff, offering benefits and training is around 0,000

Proper management of F&B operations can bring a major return on investment. If done right, a proper estimate of revenue earned from F&B services can range from million to over million , depending on the size and area of your amusement park.

These estimates are based on current market values, and prices may be higher or lower depending on each park’s individual offerings, size and location.

Artists and employees

Hiring artists and employees for a new amusement park can be a significant expense, and it’s important to budget for these costs when considering how much it costs to launch an amusement park. Recent US amusement park statistics show that, on average, it costs about million to hire and compensate permanent park employees and entertainment staff. This includes salaries, benefits and insurance coverage.

The salary range for park employees and performers can vary widely depending on the size of the park and the roles they hold. Positions such as animators, actors, and acrobats generally receive the highest salaries, while lower-level positions may have salaries closer to minimum wage. Of course, salaries can range considerably depending on the job market and region.

In addition to salaries, often offer employee benefits such as free family admission, free parking, and discounted merchandise. The cost of these benefits should also be factored into the budget when considering how much it costs to run an amusement park.

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Outsourcing entertainment and staff can be a cost-effective option in some cases, but there can also be downsides. Outsourcing can be expensive, as companies typically charge higher rates for their services. Additionally, amusement parks can be less reliable and put additional strain on park management.

Overall, hiring employees and entertainers for an amusement park can be a significant expense, and it’s important to budget for these costs when launching an amusement park. Considering the right salary range and spending budget is an essential part of the process.

Customer Services and Systems

Opening an amusement park requires a lot of investment when it comes to customer services and systems. The planning, implementation and ongoing maintenance of client services and systems are critical to continued success. The costs of providing customer services and systems can vary significantly depending on the size, scope and objectives of the amusement park.

Park Ticketing System: An amusement park ticketing system is essential for collecting revenue and managing attendance. On average, companies can expect to pay anywhere from ,000 to ,000 for amusement park ticketing software, depending on the functionality needed and the complexity of the system. Some amusement parks also have costs associated with point-of-sale hardware such as scanners, computers, and credit card processing terminals.

Food and beverages: Amusement parks must provide food and beverage services to patrons. Depending on the size and scale of the park, the cost of food and beverages can range from ,000 to ,000. Businesses should consider the cost of food and beverages, as well as the cost of any equipment used to prepare and serve the food.

Staffing Costs: The costs associated with staffing an amusement park can vary widely, depending on the size of the park and the number of staff needed. Companies should consider the cost of wages, benefits, training and safety equipment. It is not uncommon for personnel costs to range from ,000 to 0,000 per year.

Safety Equipment: Safety is a critical concern for any amusement park, and the equipment required for safety can be expensive to acquire and maintain. Businesses should factor in the cost of security equipment such as cameras, alarms, and body harnesses. Depending on the size and scope of the park, companies can expect to pay anywhere from ,000 to ,000 for safety equipment.

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Marketing promotion: Businesses should consider the costs associated with marketing and promotion when opening an amusement park. Costs may include advertising, promotional items and social media campaigns. Marketing and promotional expenses typically range from ,000 to ,000, depending on the size of the theme park and the target audience.

Marketing and advertising campaigns

Opening an amusement park is a very expensive business and it is important to understand the expected expenses associated with it. One of the biggest costs associated with starting an amusement park is the cost of a marketing and advertising campaign.

The exact cost of an amusement park marketing and advertising campaign will depend on the size and scope of the park, but it can range from tens of thousands of dollars to millions of dollars. On average, companies spend approximately ,000 to ,000 on marketing and advertising campaigns for their new amusement parks.

However, this is only a rough estimate and the actual cost may be much higher, depending on the extent of marketing and advertising efforts. Businesses should consider the following when launching an amusement park:

  • The size of the park’s target audience
  • The budget to run an advertising and marketing campaign
  • The types of media used for advertising (TV ads, radio ads, print ads, etc.)
  • The need for external marketing agencies or consultants
  • The cost of creating and producing content for the campaign

In addition to the cost of marketing and advertising campaigns, businesses should also consider the cost of producing promotional materials such as banners and posters, as well as the cost of staff to manage and execute the campaign. Depending on the size and scope of the park, these costs can add up quickly and can easily exceed initial cost estimates.


Opening your own amusement park is an incredibly exciting project, but it requires significant financial resources and careful planning. The start-up cost can range from million to 0 million depending on the size and scope of the amusement park. The cost includes land and property acquisition systems, security and safety systems, food and beverage operations, entertainment and employees, and guest services and systems. Additionally, construction and installation costs, rides and attraction equipment, insurance coverage, and marketing and advertising campaigns must also be considered. Ultimately, the cost of opening an amusement park is high, but the potential rewards and experiences for owners, employees, and customers can be priceless.