Market Overview

Five of the Longest Lines You'll Ever Endure

Five of the Longest Lines You'll Ever Endure

How long is too long to wait for something a consumer loves?

In the 1970s, moviegoers waited for hours to see Star Wars at the world-famous Chinese Theatre (formerly known as Grauman's Chinese Theatre and Mann's Chinese Theatre).

The long lines continued when Star Wars returned with the first prequel in 1999. Since that time, however, movie theaters have caught up to consumer demand by offering more showings – including a ridiculous number of midnight, 10:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. screenings a full day ahead of many film's official opening.

Some things never change, however. Many lines continue to escalate as consumer (and in the worst-case scenario, emergency room patient) demand increases.

Louis Bedigian is the Senior Tech Analyst and Features Writer of Benzinga. You can reach him at 248-636-1322 or louis(at)benzingapro(dot)com. Follow him @LouisBedigianBZ

  • Game Consoles

    Game Consoles

    In 2006, Sony made it clear that there would not be many PlayStation 3 units to go around.

    The company repeatedly fed this information to the press, who passed it on to consumers. This ensured that when the system was released in November 2006, people lined up to get one.

    Before PS3, consumers waited for Xbox 360, the original Xbox, GameCube, Nintendo 64, Dreamcast – basically any system released after 1995. Wii also drew massive crowds (for several weeks in a row).

    Image Source: Wikimedia Commons

  • iPhone Launches

    iPhone Launches

    While Apple can draw a crowd for almost anything, nothing brings consumers together like the iPhone.

    Some people may attempt to sell the shiny new phone they purchased, but Apple doesn’t care – so long as there are hundreds of people waiting in line at each of its flagship stores in New York City and other major locations around the world.

    Image Source: Wikimedia Commons

  • The Emergency Room

    The Emergency Room

    “Help, it’s an emergency!”

    Those words were once a sign that someone was in need of immediate care. Nowadays they are merely an indication that someone is about to get sit tight and hold their breath – and hope they keep breathing.

    ER wait times have skyrocketed over the past decade, soaring to one hour in some cases.

    Image Source: Wikimedia Commons

  • GateKeeper (and other hot roller coasters)

    GateKeeper (and other hot roller coasters)

    From Universal Studios to Disney World, amusement parks have been known to provide some very long lines. One of the longest came this spring when Cedar Point introduced GateKeeper, the park’s first winged roller coaster.

    When thrill-seekers came to check out the new ride, they waited in line for four hours just for two minutes of high-flying fun.

    Image Source: Wikimedia Commons

  • Airports


    Budget cuts, body scanners, heightened security – airports will use any excuse to justify the wait.

    Unlike the many voluntary lines that people are willing to join (such as the hundreds of people who are expected to line up to see Kelly Clarkson at the grand opening of a new Microsoft Store in Metro Detroit), airports do not provide an extra special benefit for waiting. Passengers can either choose to endure the long security checkpoints or find another type of transportation.

    Image Source: Wikimedia Commons


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