The Doha Park expo, which opened adjacent to the Doha Exhibition Centre on Thursday, has drawn mixed response from visitors with some complaining of ‘exorbitant charges for most of the rides’ while others felt the rates were ‘reasonable.’
Some of the visitors, who spoke to the Gulf Times yesterday at Doha Park, expressed disappointment at the “expensive” fare being charged for the rides at the expo and lashed out at the organisers for having a system of paid parking at the rate of QR25 per vehicle.
“The organisers of this expo should consider revising the charges as they are too costly, unless they are targeting only high income earners because during its promotion, we were made to believe that charges will be very affordable,” an Arab expatriate said. “I am very surprised to learn that the cheapest of the rides such as the circus train costs QR15, which is around QR5/7 in other fun parks elsewhere and to go on majority of others rides, you have to shell out some QR25 for each. To me this is too expensive. How much will I be able to spend for my two kids to have some fun...they were only able to go on two rides each and they are still yearning for more,” a Western expatriate lamented.
Baffled why there are free and paid parking within the same ground and without any clear distinctions or special facilities, an African expatriate said: “When I was about to park in the open space out there, I was really shocked when one of the attendants walked up to me and said I have to pay QR25. I was confused because I thought he was asking me entry fee, which I already learnt was free. I was about to leave when he directed me to free parking just next line.” A group of other visitors to the event wondered aloud what made the park so different from other places around the country that warranted the high rates.
“This is merely an open space without cooling system and other apparatus required indoors. Shouldn’t it be cheaper then,” a middle-aged woman asked.
However, a handful of visitors believe the charges were still within reasonable rates.
“We don’t think paying QR15 or even QR25 is too much to put a smile on our little one’s face. This is only a once in a while activity as it’s only here for some six weeks, so it’s not that bad to take advantage of the fun,” an Arab couple felt.
The park organised by the Qatar Tourism Authority in association with an event management company, has numerous rides such as a giant wheel, new ranger, house of horror, bumper car ride, carousel, circus train, entertainment hall and a circus tent.
It also features cultural and entertainment shows from different parts of the Arab region and beyond.
It also has a host of stalls offering different items for children and adults, female clothing, towel, underwear, duvet, table covers and toys.
The gates are open from 3pm until midnight, and on weekends the venue is open until 2am.
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