Help! Need 1 day plan for Univ -HARRY POTTER - staying at Pop Century

Help! We are going to DisneyWorld Spring Break 2016 (I know it’s crowded-but only time to take kids). We are staying at Pop Century and wanted to drive over to Universal for 1 day. We’ve done DW before, but never Universal. My daughter is 13, friend is 12. They are Harry Potter fanatics. We want to immerse ourselves in Harry Potter everything for that day. They want to get a wand at Olivander’s, eat at the Leaky Cauldron, right the Hogwart’s Express—everything Harry Potter. They don’t even care about any of the other rides (and they are both coaster/thrill ride junkies). I’m worried that we won’t have early access and that I don’t know anything about the way things work at Universal. I’m assuming the wand should be something we get upon first arrival?? How far is Universal from Disney/Pop Century? What time should we arrive? If I’ve read correctly, even if we purchased ‘express’ passes, they don’t apply to the Harry Potter stuff? Is that correct?
Also, I’m trying to figure out the best day to go to Universal. Our stay is 3/18-3/25 2016. I’m worried that they’ll be so jacked up about HP stuff, that they’ll be let down when we visit Epcot (with Soarin’ down for refurbishment, too- the Horror!) that I’m wondering if I should schedule Universal at the end of the trip or middle or what? Please help.

If you add on universal tp to your subscription you can access all the universal tp and chat. There is a 1 day 2 park wwohp plan that is exactly what you need. Downloading the uni lines app will help also TP website has lots of uni info and the uni tp will open up when you subs. It was $4 for m e to add it to my account this year.
Grad nights on Fridays so avoid them at all costs Exp pass not needed for wwohp plan but park to park ticket is.
The plans are in 3 seperate parts You start in 1 park take train to other park then once complete take train back

Plan on about 40 minutes to get from Pop to Uni. We took a cab and found that it was a convenient and for five people cheaper than other options. If I were to do it now, I would definitely use Uber. Leave as early as you can manage.

As Mumcalsop notes, you need a park hopper ticket for the one day.

You are right that the Express Pass does not work for most of the HP attractions. When we were there, Diagon Alley had not yet opened. We were able to use it for the Dragon Challenge coasters, but no other HP stuff.

We did our Universal trip in the middle of our stay at WDW, but I have heard @len on the WDW Today podcast recommend saving Universal for last for precisely the reason that you raise. Honestly, if you can swing it, you might want to do two days there, especially for kids who are into thrill rides. Cabana Bay has very reasonably priced rooms, and since you are not concerned about the Express Pass, it’s a really good deal. It does all for early entry, so that would solve that problem as well. The biggest disadvantage, IMO, is that you will have to pay for transportation back to the airport.

We stayed at POP for 10 nights and did 2 days over at Universal. We did not do back-to-back, we picked days based on crowd calendar and did a Thursday and a Sunday. We took a shuttle through Mears. It took about an hour. We did one whole day of nothing but Harry Potter (I highly recommend this). No touring plan, I just let the kids explore, cast spells, shop and rode all of the rides multiple times. Get the park to park and ride Hogwarts express at least twice that day (it is a different ride going to school and coming home from school). If your kids are Harry Potter fans you must start in Olivanders in Diagon Alley. This just makes since as this is how Harry starts before going to school. Tip- Buy deluxe Harry Potter Robes on Amazon to surprise your kids. $25 on Amazon over $100 in the park. Let them experience Olivanders in the park and spend the $48 for interactive wands in the park (worth every penny).
We went back to Universal for a second day and that day we bought the express pass. If your kids are teens and like thrill rides, I would do this instead of another day at Disney. My almost 11 year old preferred Universal. Universal has a lot to offer even outside of Harry Potter. Honestly the best rides of our entire trip. We went right to the front of every line all day long. We were able to do both parks in one day and still had time to go back and ride the Harry Potter ones again. Both of my kids (10 and 6) loved Universal and wished they had another day there.
FYI, you do not need the express pass if you’re just doing a Harry Potter day. The express pass only works on I think two of the four Harry Potter rides. The rest you have to wait in line for. But it works on almost the entire rest of the universal park.

I think Universal may be best at the end of your trip. As a huge Harry Potter fan myself and with three boys who are Harry Potter fans, unless the girls are as big of Disney fans as they are Harry Potter, I think they WILL be let down. IMHO, there is nothing at WDW that compares to the fully immersive experience of the Harry Potter lands. When I walked out of the Wizarding World sections of UOR, the rest of the park was “just a theme park” and I wanted to run back into Diagon Alley. The majority of Disney is better themed than most of UOR for sure, but I feel NOTHING can compare to the WWOHP experience. For me, ending there would be ending on the highest note possible!

I can’t find the 1 day WWOHP plans on the site (I am a TP member). Can you help me find it?

you need the Uni membership as well as the wdw one if you have the correct membership theses links should open for you this is under
USF// touring plans for adults // wizarding world 1 day 2 part plan part 1

Part 2 From IOA touring plans // for adults// ww1 day 2 part plan part 2.

here are the landing page links
then they are at the bottom of the page
A word of warning do not use Optimise with these plans only evaluate If you want to move stuff do it 1 line at a time then evaluate . As these plans go over 2 parks read the instructions. Optimising can have you arriving and leaving back to front.

1 Like

Thank you SO much for taking the time to explain this in detail! I do have both memberships and still wasn’t able to figure this out until I got your email. I really appreciate you taking the time to help me!