First Timer Questions

I’m starting to consider tacking on a 1-day diversion to UOR during next years family WDW trip, and I know nearly nothing about planning a trip to UOR. We will be visiting for free, so I’m not worried much about value of time. I’m coming at this more as a way to preview UOR a little bit for the following year when we will probably split-stay between WDW and UOR onsite.

Kids will be nearly-8, 6, and 3. We will be offsite about 20 minutes away, and will need a good 2 hour break in the afternoon for naps and medical needs. Is 3-4 hours in the morning into lunch time, and then 3-4 hours in the afternoon/evening enough time to sample some of the things younger kids will enjoy? I’m projecting the kids’ heights to be around 50, 46, and 40, so looks like plenty of rides they’ll be able to do. I’ll probably also do some of the coasters, at least Velocicoaster (I’m a huge Jurassic Park fan).

Unless I decide this is a bad idea and call it off, I’ll probably be coming up with more questions here over the next few months.

Any advice is appreciated.

1 Like

Are any of you Harry Potter fans?

1 Like

We started the first book with DS6 but he wasn’t really into it. If we decide to do UOR we would definitely start reading it though, and at least watch the first movie.

1 Like

I think that’s a good amount of time. It’s much less of a time suck to take a break at UOR than WDW because everything is so close together.

I would suggest to concentrate on rides first thing when the lines are lower (especially for the kids rides like Woody Woodpecker and The Seuss rides). Hit Minions first thing if possible (although that might be old advice because I’ve not been since they took away the 3D - do the lines still get as long?).
Then use your afternoon time for some of the play areas.

1 Like

I think it’s a fine amount of time if you’re mostly scouting for a longer trip and focusing on things for younger kids. As long as you aren’t trying to cram everything in, I think it’s a fun way to spend a day.

2 Likes

This is a great article for comparing the attractions and restaurants that you are familiar with at Disney World to what Universal offers.

1 Like

Absolutely! As others mention it’s a much smaller place. Think Disneyland size vs. DisneyWorld. They have a great hub for screening right at the garage. CityWalk is their Disney Springs, but it’s literally outside the park gates. (You have to walk through CItyWalk to get to the parks!)

The big question is are you thinking about park hopping? (park-to-park ticket)
If you are only going to one park it has to be Islands of Adventure. I love Universal Studios and Diagon Alley is 1,000 times better than Hogsmeade, but IOA has the big E-Tickets.

Start watching YT!! I recommend Rix Flix and The Pugh Two

1 Like

I agree w/ this, but my opinion doesn’t really matter in the big picture. I will say that when we go and if we don’t have a park hopper we go only to IoA. It was years before Universal forced us into a park hopper w/ two sides of Harry Potter (genius on their part) that we went to the other side.

2 Likes

We will have park-to-park tickets as well as unlimited express pass. I think my main issue is going to be of my own doing - I’m going to figure out how to cram everything in and we’ll be exhausted.

5 Likes

PH and EP… you’ve got it made… I agree w/ your assessment: Exhaustion :upside_down_face:

6 Likes

Use the attraction ratings when considering the rides for your kids:

https://touringplans.com/universal-studios-florida/attractions

https://touringplans.com/islands-of-adventure/attractions

Take a look at the TP touring plans. They do integrate strategies for using Universal Express.

I hope you do follow through and visit, it will be well worth it!

2 Likes

The kids will adore Seussland! It was a surprise hit for us, and DD was 10 when we first went. Also ride Pter, flyers while they are still short enough. People will be giving you envious looks because you have so many tickets-onto-flyers, aka kids short enough to allow an adult on. The nearby play area is awesome too.

4 Likes

No problemo!! Just relax and enjoy your day. You barely even need a plan if you have EP.

Depending on how into HP you get, then I would suggest perhaps exploring HP areas early on before they get busy. If you had wands, it’s good to do some spells when it’s quiet (although I appreciate that it’s unlikely you’ll have wands for a one day trip).

3 Likes

Reading at least the first book would be helpful. I was just curious if anyone in the family was obsessed with HP because you could spend a whole day or more just doing HP things.

4 Likes

You can definitely accomplish a lot if you have EP.

3 Likes

Just chiming in to agree… with EP you’ll get on pretty much everything you want. If you really aren’t HP fans, still make time to go into Diagon Alley. It is so well themed that you’ll still feel immersed in a “fantasy” world. Heck… there’s a fire breathing dragon! Kids will love it regardless of their HP fandom.

Do make time for the shows! The Bourne Stunt Spectacular is awesome! The Horror Make-Up show isn’t scary - it’s really family friendly.

As we all tell other people when they first come on these forums…

“Remember… you don’t have to do it all in the first trip!”

4 Likes

Agree 100%!!

2 Likes

This made me lol :sweat_smile:

If you have express pass, you’ll be totally fine. You’ll barely wait in lines, so you can hop to wherever strikes your fancy. Will you have a car with you? If so, that’s the pain point I’d anticipate. It’s kind of a long walk from parking > security > city walk > the parks. So maybe leave a little extra time for your afternoon break.

There are a lot of thrill rides your young’uns won’t be tall enough to go on, so if you’re mostly doing the kiddie stuff, I feel like you could fit a whole lot in one day. Maybe not every single thing, but most of it.

2 Likes

Another huge advantage of EP’s is that you won’t have to crisscross the parks. No need to chase the shortest lines. Just circle around both parks. Figure out ahead of time what you’ll want to ride.

5 Likes