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Old 02-05-2013, 03:04 PM   #1
PrincessAbby'sMom
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Usual Disneyers here: doing Universal & SeaWorld - Advice please!

We are usual Disney goers, have done Disneyland, Univ & SW in California & done WDW many times in Florida - we are making this trip:

Orlando
3 days at Disney
2 days at Universal
1 day at Sea World

Short, but fun!

Staying on Disney (to use our Disney Visa points up) & debating on renting a car to get to Univ & SW or moving to a hotel closer to Univ & SW.
Opinions on that? Suggestions?

My worries are being late for a park opening because we are moving to a different hotel, where to store luggage while at the park on hotel moving day before checking in, and how to get from one hotel to another without braking the bank.

Also: advise on how to tour Universal & Sea World? Never done in Orlando - don't know what to expect?!?
Me & Hubby (39 & 42) and our 12yr old daughter. NOT Harry Potter fans, but if we have time would be neat to walk through - but not a must! Not HUGE rollercoaster riders, but the middle of the road ones are fun! Going late April - Univ 04/25 & 26, and SW on 04/27.

Also Thurs & Fri ok times for Univ? I see there is Grad Night... which park do we do that day so not to be cut short. And How busy for SW on a Sat?


Thanks!!!
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Old 02-05-2013, 04:09 PM   #2
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Well I have nooooooo idea how this misconception got started about Universal being a roller coaster park, its not at all and in fact it only has a handful of coasters. The vast majority of it is all themed rides, you will love them. Just to name a few Jurassic Park (Its a boat ride kind of like Pirates except there are dinosaurs) Spiderman, very very unique ride I will not try to describe it for you. The main Harry Potter ride is also great and has similar technology to a certain extent as the Spiderman ride. These 2 are unlike anything you've ever seen and are worth the price of admission alone.

There are many other things, the Mummy, Men In Black, ET, Twister (at the Universal side) all great rides, all themed rides, not coasters.

You can check your luggage in at the hotel even if your room isn't ready. So no worries there.

And yes one thing you mentioned about walking around, yes this park is a visual feast for the eyes, especially Islands of Adventure. The theming is incredible and you will be blown away! You will love it.
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Old 02-05-2013, 04:22 PM   #3
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Well I have nooooooo idea how this misconception got started about Universal being a roller coaster park, its not at all and in fact it only has a handful of coasters. The vast majority of it is all themed rides, you will love them. Just to name a few Jurassic Park (Its a boat ride kind of like Pirates except there are dinosaurs) Spiderman, very very unique ride I will not try to describe it for you. The main Harry Potter ride is also great and has similar technology to a certain extent as the Spiderman ride. These 2 are unlike anything you've ever seen and are worth the price of admission alone.

There are many other things, the Mummy, Men In Black, ET, Twister (at the Universal side) all great rides, all themed rides, not coasters.

You can check your luggage in at the hotel even if your room isn't ready. So no worries there.

And yes one thing you mentioned about walking around, yes this park is a visual feast for the eyes, especially Islands of Adventure. The theming is incredible and you will be blown away! You will love it.
I've never heard that Univ is a rollercoaster park - I was simply trying to give you our likes & such,I don't know what are coasters there & whats not?!? The Jurassic drop is about my extreame! LOL (did it in Calif) So what is considered True rollercoasters that I may not handle well? I thought Mummy was, no? and what is Men in Black? I know the movie - I mean what type of ride?

thanks!
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Old 02-05-2013, 05:46 PM   #4
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I've never heard that Univ is a rollercoaster park - I was simply trying to give you our likes & such,I don't know what are coasters there & whats not?!? The Jurassic drop is about my extreame! LOL (did it in Calif) So what is considered True rollercoasters that I may not handle well? I thought Mummy was, no? and what is Men in Black? I know the movie - I mean what type of ride?

thanks!
Mummy is half dark-ride, half roller coaster. I think of you can handle Space Mountain, you can handle Mummy. Space Mountain is way more jostling than Mummy, that's for sure (I love both!).

"True" roller coasters- Hulk (IOA), Dragon Challenge (IOA), and Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit (USF). There's two kiddie coasters- Woody's Nuthouse Coaster (USF) and Flight of the Hippogriff (IOA).

Men in Black is a point and shoot ride, like Buzz Lightyear's Space Ranger Spin at MK. It's a lot of fun, and you can actually pick up the guns on this one. It does have some spinning, if you're sensitive to that.
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Old 02-05-2013, 07:57 PM   #5
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If you don't mind the drive and a bit of traffic, driving to each of the parks can be fine. We've done that and I don't consider it difficult but do be prepared to pay for parking each day.

If you can get to the parks at rope drop, head directly for the Harry Potter area, then ride Spiderman and go from there. WWoHP can also get less crowded in the evening and that area is absolutely gorgeous at night if they're open after dark. If you start at the Studios, I'd go to Despicable Me, Shrek, the Mummy and Men in Black early.

The Mummy and Men in Black are both awesome. I don't care much for big coasters either.
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Old 02-06-2013, 08:44 AM   #6
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These are just my opinions.

First, since you are getting the Disney hotel at a good price, I'd stay there rather than move and have more hotel expenses. Both USO and SW are not far from Disney, just north of them. I'd expect a half hour or so. The parking garages at USO are huge, so be sure to add a little time to park and walk from the garage. They do have moving sidewalks that will help with the walk. Seaworld's parking lot is big, though if the park is very very busy, they use lots across the street. Lots of walking then. Get to the parks early, both USO and SW. That will help you get a good parking space, and generally less crowds.

That said, I always move around to be near where I want. When I go to USO, I always stay on site. The 3 hotels have early entry and unlimited express pass to the rides that allow express pass. Also, being able to walk or boat back to my hotel, sending my purchases back to my room are also what I enjoy, plus all three hotels are really nice.

SW, I stay at one of the neighbor hotels. I stay close. Neighbor hotels get a free quick que, which like the express pass, can be used unlimitlessly on the rides that accept it. The hotels are generally cheaper than disney. I have stayed at the Fairfield at Seaworld and it was cheaper than a value at Disney, had free parking and free breakfast bar. Less than a 5 minute drive to SW.

Renting a car is the best in that you can come and go at your convenience. Plus, if SW or USO closes early, you can eat somewhere in the area of both parks. There are tons of places to eat on International Drive.

Have a great vacation.

2 years ago, we did USO, SW, Discovery Cove, Aquadica and BGT. It was a great vacation. So much so, we are doing that again this year. I find it the least costly to do either all Disney or all not Disney. One day admissions are the most expensive.
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Old 02-06-2013, 11:43 AM   #7
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The mummy is a themed ride with very cool animatronic mummies and other movie sets and things that happen that are AWESOME, one of my favorite rides, could ride it all day, maybe the best dark ride in existence. But it does have a bit of a roller coaster element in that it gets really fast at one point, but it doesn't last that long. I think you should try it at least once, I think you'll survive if the fast part is too much you don't have to ride it again, but the theming is so amazing with this ride, not to be missed.

Men In Black is not a coaster at all, just a themed ride.

Sorry thought maybe you thought it was a coaster park, many people do think that for some reason, not sure why, but its not.
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Old 02-06-2013, 12:49 PM   #8
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The mummy is a themed ride with very cool animatronic mummies and other movie sets and things that happen that are AWESOME, one of my favorite rides, could ride it all day, maybe the best dark ride in existence. But it does have a bit of a roller coaster element in that it gets really fast at one point, but it doesn't last that long. I think you should try it at least once, I think you'll survive if the fast part is too much you don't have to ride it again, but the theming is so amazing with this ride, not to be missed.

Men In Black is not a coaster at all, just a themed ride.

Sorry thought maybe you thought it was a coaster park, many people do think that for some reason, not sure why, but its not.
Thanks! No, didn't think it was a coaster park... I just know there were some rides in Calif's Univ we skipped (Mummy being one) because we thought it was a coaster since the line was so long. I guess I need to do my homework!?! LOL

Is there a place to read about the rides in detail like Disney has? I don't want to bypass something because I think its a coaster & its not (again)
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Old 02-06-2013, 12:52 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Lynne G View Post
These are just my opinions.

First, since you are getting the Disney hotel at a good price, I'd stay there rather than move and have more hotel expenses. Both USO and SW are not far from Disney, just north of them. I'd expect a half hour or so. The parking garages at USO are huge, so be sure to add a little time to park and walk from the garage. They do have moving sidewalks that will help with the walk. Seaworld's parking lot is big, though if the park is very very busy, they use lots across the street. Lots of walking then. Get to the parks early, both USO and SW. That will help you get a good parking space, and generally less crowds.

That said, I always move around to be near where I want. When I go to USO, I always stay on site. The 3 hotels have early entry and unlimited express pass to the rides that allow express pass. Also, being able to walk or boat back to my hotel, sending my purchases back to my room are also what I enjoy, plus all three hotels are really nice.

SW, I stay at one of the neighbor hotels. I stay close. Neighbor hotels get a free quick que, which like the express pass, can be used unlimitlessly on the rides that accept it. The hotels are generally cheaper than disney. I have stayed at the Fairfield at Seaworld and it was cheaper than a value at Disney, had free parking and free breakfast bar. Less than a 5 minute drive to SW.

Renting a car is the best in that you can come and go at your convenience. Plus, if SW or USO closes early, you can eat somewhere in the area of both parks. There are tons of places to eat on International Drive.

Have a great vacation.

2 years ago, we did USO, SW, Discovery Cove, Aquadica and BGT. It was a great vacation. So much so, we are doing that again this year. I find it the least costly to do either all Disney or all not Disney. One day admissions are the most expensive.
Ok, here's another question for you.... I was atually looking at the package for Univ hotels & saw that they had early entry & express pass included - but no where did it tell me that that cost of the hotel included park passes for our party. Do they?
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Old 02-06-2013, 01:23 PM   #10
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Thanks! No, didn't think it was a coaster park... I just know there were some rides in Calif's Univ we skipped (Mummy being one) because we thought it was a coaster since the line was so long. I guess I need to do my homework!?! LOL

Is there a place to read about the rides in detail like Disney has? I don't want to bypass something because I think its a coaster & its not (again)
You can look on Universal Orlandos site, purchase Universal Orlando 2013 by Seth Kubersky and there are some paysites that also include a crowd calendar.One of them I love but can not mention here.The other is Touring Plans.com but they JUST started their Universal coverage and its not complete yet.
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Old 02-06-2013, 01:24 PM   #11
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Ok, here's another question for you.... I was atually looking at the package for Univ hotels & saw that they had early entry & express pass included - but no where did it tell me that that cost of the hotel included park passes for our party. Do they?
This board usually advises against packages.They really come out as any real savings.Some packages include tickets.The actual onsite resort hotels include early entry and express passes and do NOT include tickets
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Old 02-06-2013, 01:43 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by PrincessAbby'sMom View Post
Ok, here's another question for you.... I was atually looking at the package for Univ hotels & saw that they had early entry & express pass included - but no where did it tell me that that cost of the hotel included park passes for our party. Do they?
Don't book a package. Book your hotel directly from here: http://www.loewshotels.com/en/bookin...BH,UEHRH,UERPR

Book your tickets here: www.undercovertourist.com


When booking a package, it books you at the prices that are offered now. If you make changes you are charged a fee. If you book online at Loews and prices come down, you can make changes with no extra fees. Also, you can cancel the whole thing as long as it is before 5 days out, with no cancellation fees and you don't need to pay in full until you check out. The perks for early admission and unlimited express are perks of the hotel no matter how you booked it. It has nothing to do with your tickets.

Also, tickets are cheaper at undercovertourist than directly through universal.

Booking a package just means you are booking through a travel agency (Universal Vacations) and they add their fees on top. It is better to book directly and have total control over it.
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Old 02-06-2013, 06:52 PM   #13
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Don't book a package. Book your hotel directly from here: http://www.loewshotels.com/en/bookin...BH,UEHRH,UERPR

Book your tickets here: www.undercovertourist.com


When booking a package, it books you at the prices that are offered now. If you make changes you are charged a fee. If you book online at Loews and prices come down, you can make changes with no extra fees. Also, you can cancel the whole thing as long as it is before 5 days out, with no cancellation fees and you don't need to pay in full until you check out. The perks for early admission and unlimited express are perks of the hotel no matter how you booked it. It has nothing to do with your tickets.

Also, tickets are cheaper at undercovertourist than directly through universal.

Booking a package just means you are booking through a travel agency (Universal Vacations) and they add their fees on top. It is better to book directly and have total control over it.
Ok, thanks for the advice!
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Old 02-07-2013, 01:25 PM   #14
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I definitely consider Mummy a roller coaster. I am surprised that others do not. But, in any case, it is awesome and not to be missed! I too, could ride it all day long.

I wouldn't move from your Disney hotel. To me moving is just a pain and takes away from vacation time. I would rent a car and it is very easy to get to Universal from Disney property. Others really think it is important to be onsite to get the early entry, but to us, it is not worth packing up and moving.

We are not HP fans either, but don't skip the area. It is excellent!
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Old 02-07-2013, 01:29 PM   #15
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I wouldn't move from your Disney hotel. To me moving is just a pain and takes away from vacation time. I would rent a car and it is very easy to get to Universal from Disney property. Others really think it is important to be onsite to get the early entry, but to us, it is not worth packing up and moving.
I agree...having onsite perks is nice and all but seriously...who really wants to pack up and move during a vacation? That logic doesn't make sense to me. If it works for them, fine but I don't think the majority of people would do it.
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