If you want to be among the first to ride SeaWorld’s two new roller coasters in Central Florida next year, you’ll have to visit their parks a few times before the end of 2021.
In separate press releases, both SeaWorld Orlando and Busch Gardens Tampa Bay confirmed that there will be regular passholder previews ahead of next year’s coaster debuts: February 2022 for IceBreaker at the Orlando park and March 2022 for Tampa’s Iron Gwazi.
But both parks are also planning so-called “Passport to Thrills Celebration” nights, which will be after-hours events with dedicated ride times. In order to qualify for these VIP parties, passholders must meet the following criteria:
- Visit Busch Gardens Tampa Bay and SeaWorld Orlando a minimum of three times between Sept. 7 and Dec. 31, 2021 (limited to one visit per day)
- Opt in for each park’s email newsletter
- Be an active passholder at SeaWorld Orlando through Feb. 28, 2022 and Busch Gardens Tampa Bay through March 31, 2022.
While both parks are part of the SeaWorld chain, visiting SeaWorld Orlando would only help qualify a passholder for the Ice Breaker VIP event, not the separate Iron Gwazi preview at Busch Gardens Tampa Bay, and vice versa.
Passholders who meet the criteria will get an email invite closer to the date of the VIP preview, which was not announced by SeaWorld.
Both Central Florida coasters were originally scheduled to open in 2020 before the COVID-19 pandemic hit. Despite both rides looking complete — and even intermittently testing after both parks reopened last year — guests were kept in the dark on their opening dates until late August.
SeaWorld San Diego pushed the opening for its would-be 2020 addition, the dive coaster Emperor, to March 2022. Busch Gardens Williamsburg announced Wednesday that its delayed Intamin multi-launch coaster Pantheon would be also opening in March 2022.
Correction: A previous version of this article inaccurately stated that Busch Gardens Williamsburg’s Pantheon coaster did not yet have a rescheduled opening date. In fact, the park had announced it would be opening in March 2022. Theme Park Tribune apologizes for the error.