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Old 01-31-2013, 09:48 PM   #1
Inquirer
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Annual Pass and Employment Questions

Hi, all. I apologize if this thread is redundant, as I'm sure it probably is. I recently moved down to the Orlando area for the spring (January through May, possibly July) and had a few questions regarding annual passes and employment benefits that I hope some of you may be able to answer.

I expect to visit Universal more than 3 times over the next 4 months, so I expect an annual pass is the way to go. I see the 3 options for an annual pass and would be leaning towards the Preferred Pass: the complimentary parking alone would account for the difference in cost with the Power Pass within 4 visits. Does this make sense? I see no reason to up it to the 3rd pass, however - not enough benefits for what I'd use the pass for.

Are there ever any discounts for Florida residents on Universal annual passes? I've just noticed a "Florida residents save up to $25 on any 2-park annual pass with Coca-Cola UPC code". Does anyone know anything about this? Are there ever any similar promotions during the year (through Universal or outside affiliates - including Disney cast member discounts)?

I don't quite understand the blockout dates for the Power Pass. I have a friend down here as well (works for Disney) who would likely get a Universal pass as well. Would it be better for me to get the Preferred Pass and the friend get the Power Pass, or are the blockout dates overly inconveniencing (it looks like the entire month of July is blocked out for one of the parks, for instance)?

I'm also open to employment opportunities at Universal throughout this period. Let's say I buy an annual pass and then become a Universal employee - it seems rather unlikely, but would I be able to get refunded my annual pass cost as an employee? Would you say it's better to just bite the bullet and get the annual pass rather than wait for the unlikely of employment?

And I have to ask: how competitive are the WWoHP positions?

Thanks for all your pending help, and I hope this thread isn't too characteristic of 'newbies'.
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Old 01-31-2013, 10:27 PM   #2
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I'd say to go for the preferred. I started off with the power pass but didn't like the blockout dates. I got upgraded to preferred mainly for the discounts and occasional free parking (I didn't drive at the time) so it was nice to have.

For your friend, just depends how often they'd go with you and when you want to go. They could always start off with the power and pay the difference to upgrade if they decided they didn't like having to pay for parking and having to deal with blockout dates.

If you became a team member, you wouldn't be able to get a refund, unfortunately. I have a few friends who got hired right after they paid the money to get their annual passes renewed.

I guess waiting to get the pass or biting the bullet would be totally up to you. It took me a few tries before I heard back from them, so it just depends on you if you want to wait.

I guess it kind of depends on what you want to do in the Wizarding World. I know the website used to specifically let you apply for positions in the Wizarding World but it seems to be different since I got hired. So I'm guessing if you got an interview, you'd go in and if they offered you a job, it'd be whatever's available and that may or may not be Potter.

Good luck to you!
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Old 02-01-2013, 06:52 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Inquirer View Post
I don't quite understand the blockout dates for the Power Pass. I have a friend down here as well (works for Disney) who would likely get a Universal pass as well. Would it be better for me to get the Preferred Pass and the friend get the Power Pass, or are the blockout dates overly inconveniencing (it looks like the entire month of July is blocked out for one of the parks, for instance)?
For the difference in price and benefits, you should go with the Preferred. I've had mine for nine years and it suits me just fine. I like the discounts and free parking plus the discounts on Halloween Horror Nights tickets is fantastic! If your friend drives and might be going some on her own, she should go with the Preferred as well. Paying $15.00 to park every time she visits will get old and possibly exceed the cost difference. I'm thinking of getting a seasonal pass to WDW but I don't want to have to pay the parking fee each time so I'll probably go with the regular AP again.
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Old 02-01-2013, 08:38 AM   #4
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Can I tag on a question about the free parking on the Preferred pass? It says it's not valid for your first visit - is that because your pass isn't active yet until you actually get to the park gates, and you've already parked by then?

Also, does "first visit" mean first day, or all consecutive days after the first visit? As in, if I go on a Thurs, Fri, Sat, are Fri & Sat free parking or are all 3 days considered the first visit?

Thanks!
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Old 02-01-2013, 08:50 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hpriamson View Post
Can I tag on a question about the free parking on the Preferred pass? It says it's not valid for your first visit - is that because your pass isn't active yet until you actually get to the park gates, and you've already parked by then?

Yes

Also, does "first visit" mean first day, or all consecutive days after the first visit? As in, if I go on a Thurs, Fri, Sat, are Fri & Sat free parking or are all 3 days considered the first visit?

Just the first day. Once your pass is activated by visiting a park, you'll receive free parking immediately.

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Old 02-01-2013, 12:27 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hpriamson View Post
Can I tag on a question about the free parking on the Preferred pass? It says it's not valid for your first visit - is that because your pass isn't active yet until you actually get to the park gates, and you've already parked by then?

Also, does "first visit" mean first day, or all consecutive days after the first visit? As in, if I go on a Thurs, Fri, Sat, are Fri & Sat free parking or are all 3 days considered the first visit?

Thanks!
Basically the way it works is that when you purchase your pass, online or at a booth, theres no way to bypass the parking lot like at Disney where you can go to DTD and go to GR, and get your pass and not pay for parking. At USF, you have to go thru the parking lot to get to the parks and therefore the GR windows at the front of the parks. After that day, whether you go the next day for 10 consecutive days or you come back the next week, the parking is free. Im not sure on this, but GR may refund your parking fee. Im not sure but you can always ask.
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Old 02-01-2013, 04:02 PM   #7
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Thanks for all the answers - they're appreciated.

Does anyone have any input about the "Florida residents save up to $25 on any 2-park annual pass with Coca-Cola UPC code" promotion, or any other possible discounts for the annual pass (current, expected, etc.)?
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Old 02-01-2013, 04:23 PM   #8
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If your friend drives and might be going some on her own, she should go with the Preferred as well. Paying $15.00 to park every time she visits will get old and possibly exceed the cost difference.
This is what happened with my cousin; she and her husband bought the Power Passes with FL resident discount, and they are doing it on the payment plan. They quickly realized they loved the place, but to upgrade they would have to pay off the whole Power Pass and pay for the upgrade in full as well, which wasn't in their financial plan. So now they are stuck paying for parking. They wish they'd gotten the Preferred instead!
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Old 02-01-2013, 04:49 PM   #9
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Does anyone have any input about the "Florida residents save up to $25 on any 2-park annual pass with Coca-Cola UPC code" promotion, or any other possible discounts for the annual pass (current, expected, etc.)?
They run the specials from time to time but with all the new stuff opening in the next few years, you probably won't see any promos like that one again. But...who knows. Just keep your eyes open.
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