1 Day/2 Park. Sat Dec 3. Early Entry to USF

Hello, please help! I’m trying to decide what to optimize our one day at Universal. Like many people, riding the most popular Harry Potter rides (especially Gringott’s) is a major focus for us. According to Universal’s calendar, we will be eligible to enter USF an hour early. So, I assume that the best thing for us to do is to enter early and go straight to Gringott’s for the first ride. If anyone has any suggestions on how to structure the entire day (how long to stay at USF before going to IOA; what order to do the rides in for both parks), please let me know.

We do have Express Pass. (In addition to Early Entry at USF).
We are traveling with a group of teens. Rides (especially thrill rides) are the main focus of our day.
We will definitely ride “Escape from Gringott” first, possibly two times if the crowds aren’t bad.
It is our understanding that “Forbidden Journey” is closed for renovations. So, that takes away the need to quickly hop Hogwart’s Escape after Gringott (unless it’s to do other popular attractions in IOA).

Can you give us some more information on your group? What are the ages? What kinds of things do you like? What are your must dos besides Gringotts? You will not have time to do everything in one day, so narrowing it down will help us be able to guide you.

Please also add if you have express pass or not.

However from my experience (and this all depends on how crowded things are and ASSUMES you have a park to park pass). I would go Gringots ASAP. Please note that as you approach you MUST put anything / everything in a locker - so before you enter the park have EVERYTHING in your bag or ready to get rid of. One person goes to the locker - the other gets in line.

Do Gringots - and then do it again if the line isn’t bad. Then either take in the rest of the area and ENJOY the ambiance and non-ride attractions OR beeline to Hogwart’s express and do the same with Escape.


Thank you for your help.
Most of our group will be teenagers. Our focus will be Rides, Rides, and more rides.
The more thrilling, the better!
We also have Express Pass & Early Entry.

Thank you for your suggestions!

We do have Express Passes (in addition to Early Entry to USF).

Sadly, “HP and the Forbidden Journey” is scheduled to be closed for renovations while we are there. So, that makes me think that perhaps we should go ahead & ride any super-popular rides in USF before going to IOA. (Unless there is a compelling reason to do otherwise).

I didn’t mention this early, but most of our group are teens. Our primary focus will be to ride as many rides as possible (with an emphasis on thrill rides , as well as rides that are popular for other reasons, such as the overall atmosphere/experience).

OK - so if you are looking for THRILLS I would still do Gringots first and try to re-ride as well. Then I would make my way around USF - Men in Black, The Simpsons, there are also a few roller coasters, transformers etc - so I would work from HP around and then probably back to HP to take Hogwart’s Express over to the other side.

You can then do the dueling dragons. We missed the express lane and waited in the “normal people” lane. So don’t make that mistake - it is right when you get in the castle if you can’t see the entrance door - you have gone too far. I would then make my way around there in just a big loop.

I would save the Water rides to the end - you will not get wet - you will get drenched. They are fun - but I would keep that until the end of the day. With Express Pass and a quick step - I think you can do it.

Also if you are looking for a nice lunch - Mythos is very nice

Thanks for the tips!