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What You Need to Know About Visiting Kings Island This Year (2023)

Are you looking forward to your next visit to Kings Island Amusement Park?

I’m sharing more about what’s new this year along with tips that will help you make the most of your visit to Kings Island Amusement Park in 2023. 

Eiffel Tower Kings Island

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Tips before your visit to Kings Island

  • Take a picture of the parking sign at the end of the lane where you parked.
  • Parking lots open 1 hour before the park opens. On peak holidays/high traffic times, it may open sooner. There is an additional fee for parking.
  • Stroller and Wheelchair rentals need to be booked online in advance 48 hours before your visit.
  • FYI- Kings Island is cashless and accepts payments by credit card, Apple Pay, or Google Pay
  • If you are visiting the park with a guest with special needs visit guest services first thing when you arrive. Learn more about visiting Kings Island with a special needs guest here.
  • At least one person in your party should have the free Kings Island App on their mobile phone (this will make it easier for you to navigate around the park and know ride wait times)
  • Season Pass Holder Perks- Gold, Platinum, Prestige & Prestige+ Pass holders can use their pass to participate in Early Ride Time 30 minutes before the park opens every public operating day – October (except for Friday nights during Halloween Haunt.)
  • Save time by creating an account for your unprocessed season pass online.
  • Renewal season pass holders can use the same pass for this year.
family walking at Kings Island

Tips for Visiting Kings Island With Kids

I would recommend taking advantage of the following services if you are visiting Kings Island with younger kids.

Get Colored Wristband As Soon As You Arrive

  • Have your kids measured for their colored wristbands as soon as you enter the park. Kings Island has different height requirements for its rides and you’ll save time and the hassle of having your child being measured all day if you take care of the wristband first thing.
  • You can get a colored wristband for your child at the Help Center near the Front Gate or in Planet Snoopy.

Take Advantage of Rider Swap

  • Rider Swap allows riders to enjoy the rides and supervise their children. After one rider has gone through the regular line and ridden the attraction, the supervising rider waiting with the children is then given immediate boarding upon providing their pass.
  • For more information or to participate in the Rider Swap program, visit the Help Center near the Front Gate, the Family Care Center near Planet Snoopy Ice Cream, or Soak City Guest Services.

Locate Your Lost Child With Kid Track

  • Kings Island offers a service to quickly reunite separated children and parents with cell phones.
  • You can sign up for this service at Guest Services located at the front gate, the Help Center next to the Fast Lane booth, the Family Care Center near Planet Snoopy Ice Cream, or Soak City Water Park Guest Services.

New Chaperone Policy

Kings Island is implementing a chaperone policy beginning Saturday, April 22, 2023, to help keep the park as a safe family-friendly atmosphere.

Under this policy, all guests ages 15 years old or younger must be accompanied by a chaperone who is at least 21 years old in order to be admitted to or remain in, the park after 4 p.m. local time until close. 

The chaperone must present a valid government-issued photo identification with their date of birth at ticket entry.

One (1) chaperone may accompany no more than ten (10) guests ages 15 or younger per day.

In addition, the chaperone must accompany their party during entry, remain inside the park during their visit, and be available by phone throughout their stay.

Guests ages 15 years old or younger who are found inside the park unaccompanied by a chaperone will be subject to ejection. This chaperone requirement applies to all Kings Island ticket and season pass holders.

diamondback at Kings Island

Important Kings Island Opening Dates for 2023

  • Season Pass Holder Preview: Friday, April 14, 2023
  • Park Opening Weekend: Saturday and Sunday, April 15 -16, 2023
  • Park Open Daily: Starting May 17, 2023
  • Soak City Opens: Memorial Weekend- Saturday, May 27, 2023 

Kings Island Special Events

  • Kings Island Nighttime Spectacular Fireworks – first fireworks show May 26, 2023
  • *Firework shows only play at 10pm or later closing thru Labor Day 2023.
  • Coasterstock – May 19-20
  • Spiritsong – June 15-17
Soak City at Kings Island

Do You Need a Reservation for Kings Island This Year?

Reservations are NO LONGER REQUIRED for Kings Island AND Soak City Waterpark.

Adventure Port at Kings Island
Image provided by Kings Island

Adventure Port (Opening This Summer 2023)

The new ancient-themed civilization will be opening in the summer of 2023. Adventure Port is located between Coney Mall and Action Zone.

Park guests can look forward to two new family rides, enhanced theming to Adventure Express family train roller-coaster and Enrique’s quick service restaurant and the Mercado.

Sol Spin at Kings Island
Image provided by Kings Island

Sol Spin

This recently discovered mechanism appears to be an immense sun disk created by an ancient civilization.

Climb aboard these open-air, suspended passenger vehicles to experience the thrill of flying 60 feet through the air at 25 m.p.h.

Cargo Loco at Kings Island
Image provided by Kings Island

Cargo Loco (New Family Ride)

Need a company to ship your goods?

Look no further than the Arrow Cargo Company. Their methods might be a little dizzying, but they’ll get your freight from Point A to Point B…eventually.

Check out the shipping barrels for yourself and get ready for the trip of your life!

The Mercado at Kings Island
Image provided by Kings Island

The Mercado

Cultures come together at the Mercado, a melting pot where guests simply celebrate being alive.

Whether you’re an explorer just passing through, or a tourist checking out the local scene, the local purveyor is your source for dining, drinking, cargo transport, and more.

Kings Island Executive Chef Joseph Perez
Image provided by Kings Island

New Kings Island Executive Chef Joseph Perez

Culinary experiences at Kings Island will be led by the park’s new Executive Chef, Joseph Perez. He previously served as the Executive Chef at Ameristar Casino and Hotel in Kansas City, Missouri. 

Enrique's at Kings Island
Image provided by Kings Island

New Restaurants at Kings Island for 2023

There are two new restaurants to check out at Kings Island for the 2023 season.

Enrique’s (Adventure Port) (Summer 2023)

A trip to Adventure Port isn’t complete unless you experience the local cuisine.

Stop by Enrique’s quick-serve restaurant for a menu that features traditional burritos, burrito bowls, tacos, salads, and sides.

Grain and Grill Kings Island
Image provided by Kings Island

Grain & Grill (International Street) (Summer 2023)

Grain & Grill, is a fast-casual dining location that will feature Eastern European and Mediterranean flavors. 

Located on International Street next to Starbucks®, the restaurant will feature indoor dining with a view of the Royal Fountain.

Indoor dining at the Festhaus at Kings IslandWhat Restaurants Are On the All-Season Dining Plan at Kings Island for 2023?

  • Chicken Shack
  • Coconut Cove Cafe
  • Coney Bar-B-Que
  • Enrique’s
  • Festhaus
  • Grain & Grill
  • Island Smokehouse
  • Juke Box Diner
  • LaRosa’s Pizzeria
  • Miami River Brewhouse
  • Panda Express
  • Planet Snoopy Grill
  • Potato Works
  • Skyline Chili
  • The French Corner
  • Tom & Chee

*Mobile Food Ordering is available at Festhaus and Jukebox Diner.

What You Need to Know About Visiting Kings Island This Year

Can you bring your own food and drinks to Kings Island?

No outside food, beverages, or coolers are allowed to be brought into Kings Island or Soak City Water Park.

*Exceptions are made for Guests with special dietary needs including food allergies and baby food and formula.

Guests with special dietary needs should stop at Guest Services located at the Front Gate when they arrive at the Park.  

For the best value on meals, consider purchasing an All-Day Dining ticket for a one-time visit or the All-Season Dining Plan if you’re a season pass holder.

All Season Dining Plan at Kings Island

Is the All-Season Dining Plan Worth it?

In my opinion, YES!!!!, the All Season Dining Plan is definitely worth the price, especially if you have teenagers. The food is actually really good on the All-Season Dining Plan and there are a lot of options to choose from.

My favorite restaurants on the All-Season Dining plan are Coney Bar-B-Cue and Miami River Brewhouse.

*Snacks are NOT part of the All-Season Dining Plan.

Coney Island section at Kings Island

Is the All-Season Drink Plan Worth It?

In my opinion, YES! The All-Season Drink Plan is worth paying for. It’s important to stay hydrated during your visit, especially on a hot summer day.

If you visit the park a lot it will pay for itself and you can get refills every 15 minutes throughout the day.

You can opt for either a refillable 2023 souvenir bottle OR a season pass drink plan paper cup. (Souvenir bottles from previous years aren’t valid)

I personally prefer the paper cup because I don’t want to carry around a souvenir bottle each time that I visit and I don’t want to purchase a locker for it if I go on Banshee or Orion.

drink station at Kings Island

Will Courtesy Cups of Water Still Be Offered?

Yes, you can still get courtesy cups of water where drinks are available. 

sign at Kings Island

New International Street Webcam

You can now watch what’s going on at International Street at Kings Island on the webcam.

Orion, the Seventh Giga Coaster in the WorldLocker Rentals Available Near Orion and Banshee

If you have a bag and want to ride Orion or Banshee you’ll need to purchase a locker rental located near the ride entrance.

There are no storage bins available for guests for bags for either ride.

Diamondback roller coaster at Kings Island Amusement Park

How to Keep Your Valuables Secure on Rides

If you don’t want to risk your phone or keys falling out of your pocket during a ride, consider wearing a thin running belt under your shirt.

Running belts are thinner than fanny packs which makes them easier to wear on rides without interfering with ride harnesses and straps.

Many rides do not have storage bins for your bags while you ride or you may need to purchase a locker rental. It’s best to try to limit what you bring into the park if you don’t want to be stuck carrying a bag. 

park map at Kings Island

Save on Discounted Tickets to Kings Island Amusement Park

You can find save money with lower prices than at the gate for admission to Kings Island here which you can use to go straight to the gate.

*Admission tickets are required for ages 3 and up and include both Kings Island and Soak City Waterpark during the summer months.

If you plan on visiting Kings Island multiple times throughout the year a Kings Island Season Pass is the best value.

cabins at Kings Island Camp Cedar

Looking for Lodging Options Near Kings Island?

You can find several lodging options and hotels within a short drive of Kings Island.

Where is Kings Island Amusement Park Located?

Kings Island is located at 6300 Kings Island Dr, Mason, OH.

Looking for more things to do around Cincinnati?

Check out my article on Hidden Gems and Unique Things to Do Around Cincinnati.

Kings Island Amusement Park

45 thoughts on “What You Need to Know About Visiting Kings Island This Year (2023)”

  1. I haven’t been to Kings Island in probably 16 years. I used to live in Mason and my family had season pass every year. Hoping my kids would enjoy going.

  2. The Kings Island linked through the entry is for an artist.
    Kings Island @KingsIsland · Artist

    My family is looking forward to going to Kings Island this summer, three teenagers are ready to ride and have fun. Thanks.

  3. There were fewer people in the park which helped reduce the ride times. The popular rides still had a typical wait time. We use the Kings Island app to help us determine which rides we should ride next based on how long we want to wait.

  4. Curious how many rides you were able to get on and how long the lines were during the pandemic as compared to normal?

  5. We used to go there as a family and friends! I remember some of the rides that aren’t there anymore. Have been wanting to go back again for awhile now. My folks live on the OH/WV border so am hoping we can visit again. Would love to win, thank you!

  6. Thank you so much for such a detailed article. My family and I are looking to go to King’s Island for the first time ever and had some questions since we’ve never been there yet. You covered everything we were wondering about. Very helpful. Thanks for having the awesome giveaway, and thank you for the opportunity!

  7. Excellent and very thorough explanation of what is happening at KI. Looking forward to riding Orionfor the first time.

  8. Thanks for the thorough information. We love King’s Island and definitely want to take a trip this year before season is over.

  9. I would love to.win these tickets and go ride the new roller coaster..Thanks so much for sharing everything with us and giving us an opportunity to win tickets…?

  10. Thank you for all of the valuable info. I was a little hesitate on bringing the kids this year but we will definitely have to take a trip before this seasons over. ?

  11. We haven’t been able to go in over 2 years. We live 3 hours away and just haven’t had the extra money for our family of 5 (actually 4 now since our oldest moved to Boston). We have a 13 & 15 year old still at home and they are dying to try Orion!! Thanks for the opportunity!

  12. Haven’t been to KI this year yet. It’s pricey so we don’t go too often. We try to go once a year but with everything going on, we haven’t bought tickets yet. Winning some would definitely help!

  13. awesome tips! I havent been to KI since my senior year. Lol we won’t say how long. I really need to take my boys, they would love it.

  14. Thank you for letting us know about the Orion lockers! I hope we win, we are sick of being stuck at home!

  15. We visited Kings Island this week like we do every year and they really did make the whole process very easy. We worried it would take away from the fun but it absolutely did not. Even with masks you can still have an incredible time at Kings Island!

  16. My daughter has never been. I think it would be awesome to take her for the first time. She’s definitely a thrill seeker!

  17. Thanks for sharing your experience with going to Kings Island to give others a better idea of how it will be if we decide to go!

  18. So insightful! I’m so glad someone covered KI for those of us who were too unsure to test it beforehand!

  19. This is such a helpful overview! I love that they even thought to have the few rest areas that are mask free.
    I’d love to go and have some fun checking out the new rides!

  20. My son and I have been but my daughters haven’t. I know they would love it as much as me and my son did!

  21. Would love to get to Kings Island still this summer! Thanks for all of the great information about safety and precautions being taken!

  22. This information is very helpful. Thank you for compiling such a great list of answers to all the questions I had in my mind and then some.

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