Six Flags' total revenue through May 31, 2006 was up one percent from last year, or $2.6 million. From then to June 18 though, total revenue has fallen by $3.2 million. Attendance is also down 13 percent.
Mark Shapiro, President and CEO of SFI said, "Increased guest spending is continuing at a strong pace -- a clear indication that our strategy is working." He also stated that, "The drop-off in attendance was driven primarily by an anticipated decline in our season pass sales, which we are no longer deeply discounting in an effort to restore price and brand integrity, and to wean ourselves from those teens who don't spend money in the park."
Shapiro also noted that attendance in the first quarter has been hurt by Hurricane Katrina and the season closure of Six Flags New Orleans, less visits from schools to the Mexico City parks, reduced and delayed marketing spending, rides that came into operation later than expected, and inclement weather.
Six Flags has stated that their plan to bring in more families is proving more difficult than they had thought. SFI also said that they plan to increase cash operating expenses over the course of the year from $45 million to $60 million. This will be to beef up the staff to attract more families to the parks.
The company is now considering selling six of their weaker properties. These include Six Flags Darien Lake, Six Flags Waterworld, Six Flags Magic Mountain and Hurricane Harbor, Six Flags Elitch Gardens, and Wild Waves and Enchanted Village. Though SFI is not sure if any transaction will be made, the decision is part of Six Flag's plan to get out of debt.