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Old 10-02-2012, 04:37 PM   #1
Earning My Ears
Join Date: Apr 2006
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March 2013 Help!

Ok, so I've been trying to read on here to get info and have pieced together a few things, but now need help to see if I'm assessing correctly... We've never been to Universal - would be for 2 adults 2 kids (7 and 11) and I've figured out the 11 is an adult for ticket purposes....

This would be for a March 14 - 17 trip (arriving very later on the 14th - flight lands at 11 pm....)

So question 1 is should we get a cheaper room by the airport on the 14th and wait to check in on the 15th... seems doable, but I also think it would be nice to get to where we are going... we already move to Disney on the 17th and not sure how much hotel hopping we should do, after all want it to be a vacation...

Right now, I just booked a Std room at Royal Pacific 274/300/300 for the 3 nights - AAA rate. Should I expect the AAA rate to come down any or is that pretty much as good as I'm going to get that time of year? AAA was cheaper by about 30 per night from the regular rate.... Annual Pass Rates weren't yet out so I couldn't compare there.... So room cost at AAA rate is about 985 after taxes

Beyond the room then I'm trying to sift through ticket options, Sounds like if 1 of us gets a Preferred AP, then the room rate could be lower AND there would be a 15% discount on park tickets at the front gate... But gate prices seem higher than the universal site and are also higher than the site I normally get tickets from... looking at 3 day Park to Park tickets.... So here is what I've played with price wise:

Option 1 - 1 AP, and about 25% room discount with AP (making some assumptions here)
If I do 1 AP and 2A, 1C at gate seems like total cost would be about $750 (260 AP + 507 2A/1C at gate - 76 discount from AP + 60 ish taxes) if I figured it out correctly... (did I?) If room discount brought room rates down another 15% which would be about 25% off the regular rate (is this realistic?) then hotel + tickets + parking = 1635 ish

Option 2 - stick with AAA rate, ticket from universal online
If I do 3A/1C through universal online looks like cost is about 650 (153 + 153 + 153 +141 + 48 taxes). So hotel + tickets + parking = 1685 ish

Option 3 - stick with AAA rate, tickets from undercover tourist
If I do 3A/1C through undercover tourist then cost is about 590 (150 + 150 + 150 + 140 = 0 taxes) So hotel + tickets + parking = 1625

Have I figured this correctly? If so, it looks like Option 3 is the best option, and I just stick with the AAA rate? Is there another reason I should consider option 1 and getting 1 AP? Any guesses on whether ticket prices will increase?

Or does this all seem like I'm paying too much and there is something else I should consider.

I would love to do a club level room, but where we get in late and plan to be at the parks most the day then feels like that would be a waste of $300, would you agree?

Finally, any thoughts on how much to budget food wise? we tend to share meals and are planning to have a car so could have a cooler too if that is a better option.... but I hear that a Butter Beer is a must!

Sorry for the length, but I do appreciate any help from those that have been!
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Old 10-03-2012, 09:30 AM   #2
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The AP option would only work if you know for sure that there are AP rates available for your dates. If there are, you should snag them ASAP and then order your AP later.

We've done the first night at an offsite hotel and then gone over bright and early the next morning to the Universal hotel. It works just fine and does save a considerable amount of money. I wouldn't stay near the airport though. I would stay at a hotel very close to Universal.

Take a look at the food sticky on the main universal board. It will give you ideas of where you want to eat. It also has full menus to help you budget.
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Old 10-03-2012, 05:55 PM   #3
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I just booked through priceline Loews at 239$ a night nearly your dates.
april 6- 9th
There is only 1 thing I love more than holding my DD's hand.. It is holding her hand and watching her grow up. ... added a new DD for double the fun!

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Old 10-03-2012, 06:26 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by sweetdana View Post
I just booked through priceline Loews at 239$ a night nearly your dates.
april 6- 9th

Here's the link...


It is weird that this is so cheap, but worth it to grab it.
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