New to Universal and IOA- I have questions.


Dec 28, 1999
Never been to US or IOA and need info. My main concern is which rides are too intense for my daughters ages 9 & 7. They have done everything at WDW except Alein Encounter. Just do not want to get on something that will cause them to be apprehensive the rest of our time there. By too intense I mean graphic. They enoy thrill rides but are not crazy about things jumping out at them. Did not enjoy "tough to be a bug". They have wild imaginations but have been quite sheltered from certain TV shows and movies. Hope this provides you with enough background info. Thanks.
I would screen T2:3D first maybe Twister but thats it for USF.

At IOA I would...hmmm....I dunno. I think your young guns could handle just about everything here. Anything that might scare them you can see in plain view. (coasters and drops on water rides)

My daughter got a little freaked out on Jaws, and she loves ITTBAB.
Very tough to predict what kids will love or hate especially when they are not your own.
While another poster said to avoid T2-3D yet said everything at IOA is fine, I would debate that because I think Spiderman would be much more "threatening" on a personal level to a child because in Terminator the characters are chasing each other while the bad guys on Spiderman are trying to destroy the scoop you are in.
Then again Terminator characters are human and robot while Spiderman's are comic book, and your kids may hate or love both, only you would know, and even then kids have a way of surprising us!
I have an 11 year old with autism and he grabs my arm when he gets spooked. He's proved my guesses wrong many times, loving Twister, laughing at King Kong, wanting to ride MIB a million times, totally unimpressed at Jaws.... Going on the level of how hard he grabs me I would avoid Back to the Future because of the frantic pace and simulated drops and explosions.
So bottom line (sorry I tend to get wordy)... Listen to your kids, start with characters and situations familiar to them (Nick studios is a wonderful start and right at Universal's front gates). Both parks have much to do and see on so many levels, take your time and push your limits a bit.
I don't think any of the rides or shows are too traumatic for anyone over 5 years old but then Woody Woodpecker scares the bejeebers outta me... go figure
1 short (and probably more useful) tip to keep the kids mellow:
On all rides and shows avoid sitting in the front row and/or have parents take the outside seats as those provide the most intense experience.
My son was 6 when we went and he doesn't do roller coasters so I don't know that this is too informative, but here goes. Spiderman, Twister and King Kong scared him to death, but he LOVED Jaws and says he will ride Back to the Future again this trip. We didn't do T2, but I thought it might be a little too intense for him, we are going to try that this year though. Like in the previous posts, I think it truly depends on each individual child - my son loved Splash Mountian the first year we went (he was 5) and wouldn't go near it the next year, go figure. Good luck and have a great trip.
I agree with the other posts... it's very difficult to tell what a particular child will find "too much". My 10 and 13 year old boys weren't phased by anything USF and IOA had to offer, at least from a fear standpoint. But I can see how some of these rides would be rough for younger ones.

T2:3D (USF) seems likely as the worst. Realistic 3D robotics coming out of the screen at you in a threatening manner.

Spiderman (IOA) could also affect some. I LOVE this ride, if you think they can handle it they should experience it... I recommend it. It's a 3D virutal ride on a moving car that is truly amazing. But the comic book bad guys are "attacking" the ride, so it can be scary.

Back to the Future (USF) I would call similar to Star Tours at Disney/MGM. Maybe a little rougher, but similar in nature as a virtual ride.

Twister (USF) A twister simulation where you stand on a porch and the small town in front of you blows around in a twister. Pretty neat affects, I did see one child bail out of this ride.

Jaws/Kong (USF), Jurassic Park (IOA). Robotic character rides that seem harmless to me, but could scare littler ones. The Jurassic ride has the added bonus of a flume type drop.

Hulk/Deuling Dragons (IOA). Full tilt, high energy, multiple G-Force roller coasters with twists, loops, etc. Not scary in the sense of being attacked... but just in the sense of being wild. Many children fear these rides.

MIB (USF). I don't think this ride would scare anyone, except possibly when you spin in the fog. Getting to shoot all the aliens is a blast, didn't see any kids getting scared here.

Another virtual ride that surprised me was the Hanna-Barbera ride near the entrance of USF. This ride is a fairly wild virtual ride that can be a bit much for young children. They have seats up front for those with little kids that don't want to experience the motion, which was more than I expected.
My 4 1/2 DD loved Spiderman and Back to the future. Last yr Jaws scared her so bad that she wouldn't go near it this yr. Last yr she loved Kong, this yr she was scared but in her words "not too much". Kong is or will be gone soon. Tlak to the CM's. they are great with kids. At kong, when they realized DD was scared when we got, they let her go into the control booth ans see that he isn't real and that he doesn't touch the car.


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