To Souvenir Cup, or Not to Souvenir Cup

170415 Kings Island 2017 Mystic Timbers Souvenir Bottle

There used to be a time where the decision was easy. You simply paid for your drinks individually, which really got expensive fast. Or you purchased a souvenir cup and received free refills on the day of purchase and $1 refills thereafter. However, in 2016, Cedar Fair rolled out an enticing program for those of us who like to pay one and done with the All-Season Souvenir cup.

With the All-Season souvenir cups, you paid for the cup upfront and receive free refills all season, and you could use the cups at all of the Cedar Fair parks. It was a no-brainer, but came with its own set of risks and downfalls.

Once the All-Season souvenir bottles were unlimited for the year, they were easy targets of thieves, as gross as that sounds to drink out of other people’s bottles you do not know. Plus you always had to deal with storing the bottles during rides.

Fast forward to 2017, and Cedar Fair introduced the All-Season Drink Pass, where you get unlimited drinks all season, though in smaller, disposable cups.

So the question became, To Souvenir Cup, or Not to Souvenir Cup?

When the start of the season rolled around, our family had to make a decision, would be go with the All-Season Souvenir bottles or the simpler All-Season Drink Pass? Or do we do one Drink Pass and one Bottle to share among our family?

After discussion, our family elected to go with two All-Season Souvenir bottles, and here is why.

Both programs limit refills to every 15 minutes. The All-Season Drink Pass offers a smaller cup of beverage than that in the souvenir bottles. The All-Season Drink Pass does not include lids or straws with the cups, as opposed to the souvenir bottles that do.

Since we have little kids and share the cups between our family, we have enough choices to make about which beverage to put inside them. The All-Season souvenir bottles were an easy decision for our family because they offer lids and a straw, which minimize the potential for spills.

We also have children young enough that we bring a stroller into the parks; therefore, we have a place to store the cups and typically at least one adult is back with our youngest and the stroller. We just need to be diligent about keeping an eye on the stroller/bringing the cups with us on any family rides.

Now that you know our family’s reasoning for going with the All-Season Souvenir Bottles, which program do you prefer?

Note: The 2017 souvenir bottles are about 4 ounces smaller than those from 2016 and years prior. Current cups hold 24 ounces of beverage as opposed to 28 ounces in years prior.

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4 thoughts on “To Souvenir Cup, or Not to Souvenir Cup

  1. Joe

    Totally understand about the young kids and strollers. Bottle is probably the right way to go for your family.

    I’ve never purchased a souvenir bottle or any kind of plan previously. Too much of a pain carrying it around all day and storing it for rides. Plus I’m cheap and just tend to hit the water fountains for the 4-5 hours we’re in the park. But, the drink pass does have me interested. No cup = no worries about carrying it and eliminates ride issues. I think the smaller size is actually a good thing. 12 oz (or whatever) quenches your thirst as well as 24 or 28 oz. No need for the extra sugar and calories just because supersize is available. Haven’t reached a final decision yet but I think I’m leaning towards getting one of the drink passes this year.

    1. Justin Post author

      Just looking at the trend of other parks, they appear to be making it harder to get the free cups of water, or even filling your bottle, as many machines no longer have that feature. They are now encouraging guests to get the drink plans/bottles or use the water fountains around the park.

  2. Sam

    We spoke to customer service on the cups and if they are stolen you can go to guest services and report it and they will deactivate the bar code on the cup. The only downside is you do have to pay $2.99 to get a new souvenir cup! We have 2 plans for drinks between our 3 family members; my husband, our 4 year old and myself; so we did one of each plan. That way when we come to the park without our son we don’t have to worry about dragging the cup around and when he is with us we either have a stroller or a wagon so it works out perfectly to have the souvenir cup! Only downside I have found to doing the plan with disposable cups is we tend to drink it a lot faster than we did with the bottle and we are looking for another before the 15 minutes is up sometimes! Even with the smaller bottles this year I still find this to be true we don’t drink the bottle as quickly as we do the throw away cups, not sure why just an observation.


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