Planning for UOR and Hagrid's

I have been diligently following the Tracking Hagrid’s Motorbike Adventure opening times thread, and have been working on my plans for our UOR day at the end of January. The overall plan for the day is to do all things Potter, adding in the “Not To Be Missed” attractions in each park. I have come up with two strategies to do this, as follows.

Strategy 1:

  • Start in USF, complete all desired attractions, and then take the Hogwarts Express to IOA. Complete all desired attractions there, take the HE back to USF, and then leave the park.
  • Advantages: Hits the 1:00 “sweet spot” of up-time/lines at Hagrid’s.
  • Disadvantages: Longer wait at Hagrid’s, potentially soggy ride back on HE if we do any water rides at IOA.

Strategy 2:

  • Start in IOA, RD Hagrid’s, and then take the HE to USF. Complete all desired attractions there, take the HE back to IOA. Complete remaining attractions there and then leave park.
  • Advantages: Potentially shorter wait at Hagrid’s, no soggy ride on HE.
  • Disadvantages: Gambling that Hagrid’s will be up at RD, DW does not like to “walk with purpose” so there will be a lot of complaining about RD

My current thinking is that Strategy 2 is the better option, as it gives us a chance to get a short wait time, and if Hagrid’s does not appear to be up at RD we can just head to the HE and pick up Hagrid’s later in the day. That would mean some lost time, but the gamble may be worth it.

Anyone with recent experience have any thoughts on this? Is there a third option that I have overlooked?

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About strategy 2…I was at the front of the line but waited an hour before it opened (2:00 the day before it was bayous 40 minutes). You will be in January? I think I would keep an eye on the weather. Like Hulk and Rip Ride Rockit Hagrid’s seem to be delayed on colder mornings. A TM said it is not the only reason but it is one reason it is sometimes delayed.

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I’m also struggling with how to approach our 1-day-2-park sidetrip to Universal on 1/7. (I would have been fine with skipping UOR altogether, but dh and 2 teen boys don’t want to miss it.)

I have us doing IOA first (USF has early admission, which we can’t do). But TP put us doing Hagrid’s last before taking the train over to IOA, with a 164 minute predicted wait! :flushed: I don’t think we will be up for that, we’ll skip it if that’s the wait.

I tried forcing it to the first thing in the plan but that still predicts a 141 min wait and increases a lot of the other wait times. So not sure we will do it at all… :frowning: Maybe we’ll try to get there at RD but with early admission at USF and the predicted wait showing what it is, I don’t really think that’s going to help. And we are there on a VERY low CL day! (2/3) :roll_eyes:

Yes, I will definitely be watching it like a hawk. Right now our choices are Wed 1/29 or Thurs 1/30. Wed has lower CLs, but Thurs has an additional hour at IOA. The CLs don’t make that much of a difference on the TPs as I am planning on having XP, so I am leaning towards Thurs if the weather is better.

They were “trying to get it up to speed” on the colder mornings. They were running empty vehicles.

Well, I’ll volunteer to be a “crash test dummy” :wink:

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Thanks for the weather tip. How do Floridians define “colder mornings”? We are coming from South Dakota and in January any temp above 32F is warm!

It seemed to be in the low 50s although I am unclear if it is an exact number.

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I’m an option 2 fan. My brain knows the “sweet spot”, but my heart says… “yeah, but sometimes it opens and then shuts down for hours”

For my peace of mind, I’d rather wait at Hagrid’s and get on “sometime” that morning than keep thinking about “What time is it? When do I need to leave to get to Hagrid?” and Checking the app constantly to see the ride status…

My DW hates RD too, so I get it. However, she understand that getting up a bit earlier and walking with purpose to be easier / better than dealing with my anxiety / stress about not getting on at all.

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Am I correct that you have done all the other HP rides/attractions/awesomeness in the past, but this will be your first time for Hagrid? If so, I would choose strategy 2. If you have NOT done all the HP awesomeness in the past, I would do strategy 1 and start your day with Diagon Alley and then you will be in a state of utter bliss and able to tackle anything else the day throws at you. :slight_smile:

(Side note: I had a trip in early December where I did one day RDing Hagrid and two days doing Hagrid in the middle of the day. Both were successful, so I think either way can work.)

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Some ideas to consider: 1) is Hagrids an absolute must do? We skipped it. It was our first ever trip to U and we figured that our time was best spent seeing as much as possible. There is so much to see in the other parts of WWOHP; we had 1.5 days and know we didn’t see it all. 2) I want to warn you that getting on the Hogwarts express can take a long time. It was very frustrating for my group as we waited, with time limits to get to the other park, like when we had a locker at USF and were in IOA waiting for the last train to get back to the locker. We almost missed the last train that time and I don’t know what we would have done to get back to the other park. And we had express pass. Our CL were about 6 and 8 I think.

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FWIW, here are links to my (current) plans
Strategy 1:
Part 1 - https://touringplans.com/plans/print?id=3500964
Part 2 - https://touringplans.com/plans/print?id=3500971
Strategy 2:
Part 1 - https://touringplans.com/plans/print?id=3795996
Part 2 - https://touringplans.com/plans/print?id=3795993
Part 3 - https://touringplans.com/plans/print?id=3795998

We did the original land plus the major stuff in USF/IOA 7 years ago, so Diagon Alley and Hagrid’s are the new HP things for us. One thing I like about Strategy 1 is that it kind of follows the storyline - start in London the ride the HE to Hogwarts.

Yep, definitely a must-do. Having done WWoHP before and also having gone to the studios outside of London we are willing to sacrifice some touring time to experience it.

Thanks for the heads-up!

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Yes, you should go with Strategy 1. As a HUGE HP fan, I am a big believer in following the story by starting in Diagon Alley. I think that will make you the most happy. Also, if you have any intention of getting wands, Ollivander’s in Diagon Alley is the only way to go and spell casting is best done in the early hours. Will you have EE? Finally, refer to my “state of utter bliss” comment above! :rofl:

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Diagon Alley was my favorite part of all of the HP lands. It really was like being in the movies’ Diagon Alley. There were so many little details that were wonderful. I’m sure I’m repeating stuff you already know. :slight_smile: Be sure to go into Knockturn Alley. It might be easy to miss. That was my absolute favorite part.

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I haven’t read everything here, but I want to point out that if you don’t know the show on the Hogwarts Express is different going from USF to IOA than it is the other way. So, plan to go both ways if possible. There wasn’t a “better” one, just different.

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FYI - The only bench in all of DA to sit on is in Knockturn Alley and it’s air conditioned! My DW got worn out on our last trip. DD & I put her there with her phone and a drink and she was happy to have a cool / quiet place to sit for a while as we explored WWOHP

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That must have changed since your trip b/c we sat on benches several times in DA that were not in KA. One in particular I remember was near the bathrooms. Maybe b/c of its location it was often empty and we made use of it many times. My trip was this last Thanksgiving.

My last trip was May this year. So they could have added them. They are desperately needed.

They have definitely added some. In addition to the one near the bathroom, there is also one near the Carkitt Market stage.

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Yes! Borgin and Burkes is my most favorite store anywhere! :heart: