I'm traveling with 2 people who have never been to Universal:
my Mom, who is in her 60's, has read Harry Potter.
my Sister, who is 32, and a fairly big Harry Potter fan.
In addition, we have my other sister, age 30, who came to Hogsmeade back in 2010, but hasn't been to the London side. She's also a big HP fan.
The rest of our group is me, and 2 of my daughters, age 13 and 16. Who are pretty big HP fans. The 3 of us have been in 2010 and 2014!
The crowd levels listed for our trip are:
Th. 1 DEC: 4 IOA. 2 US. (park hours 9-7)
F. 2 DEC: 2 IOA. 2 US. (park hours 9-7)
Sa. 3 DEC: 5 IOA. 3 US. (park hours 9-8)
We don't have EE, and I just found out it's at US every day. I made out a bunch of touring plans, switching between the 2 parks every day. I thought EE was at IoA, so I may need to rethink my strategies.
Q#1: Looking at these crowd levels, what kind of strategies would you employ?
I was thinking most shows on the Saturday, and water rides. And trying to maximize time at IoA on Friday, when the crowd level is lowest.
I want to take the HEX back and forth 2-4 times!
I want to make sure and be in Hogsmeade for one park close, and London for 2 park closings.
I don't have a need to consolidate the Harry Potter stuff, as I'd like to visit the Harry Potter stuff every day. Q#2: But has anyone done exclusively HP stuff in one day? Was it a good experience?
I would love to visit London before Hogsmeade to follow Harry's journey.
Q#3: We will likely buy an interactive wand, and want to figure out the least busy time to cast those spells? right before park closing? (Maybe consolidate the wand waving to one day to cut down on locker needs?)
According to my first draft of touring plans, we have time to visit everything, twice to our favorites, and more than that to the Harry Potter stuff.
Q#4 Also, how would you approach the Hogwarts que with people who've never seen it before? If we arrive at a non-busy time, we would go so quickly through the line, that we couldn't see all the details and preshow. Would you do a "castle tour" first? Or go on the ride first, and then back through a castle tour? Or is there a better way to experience this for first time visitors?
Thanks for any ideas and thoughts you can offer!