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Question about visit to Universal Orlando in July

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  • Question about visit to Universal Orlando in July

    I'm taking my son to see the Harry Potter parks at Universal Orlando in July which means my only options are their full priced tickets. I'm trying to decide if it's worth the extra 100 dollars to have access to both parks. I assume the lines will be ridiculously long in July which seems to be their peak season and I'm not even certain we'd be able to see enough of both parks to make it worth the extra money. I assume if we only try to hit the HP attractions we probably can with a few other attractions sprinkled in, but I'm not certain if that makes it worth the cost.

    How crazy are the lines right now? How much would we potentially get in (We're not adding Express Pass on top of those costs)?

    Just curious for thoughts of those who are local. To do 2 parks in one day for the two of us is 358 dollars, 250 for just one, so simply trying to determine my best value.

    Second question, if we do just one I'm thinking Universal Studios makes more sense over IOA, especially since my son doesn't like coasters. Thoughts?


  • #2
    First question - are you a local to Universal Studios Hollywood? If so, there are number of attractions (such as Minion Madness, Simpsons, etc) that are not worth it. (Some differences but not enough).

    Up until last year I had an annual pass for Universal in Florida. I like it alot, but it is for older crowds. While it will be crowded, the crowds compared to WDW are not as bad. If possible, try to go during the week day. Also buy your tickets online.

    Of the two parks, I personally like IOA over the Studios. You will find many longer lines there because of summer and the water rides (mostly between 45-1 hour). The different lands are wonderful to walk through. However, during summer in FL you will likely have thunder storms which shut down a good portion of the rides. IOA does have more unique experiences than the studios (like Spiderman, Kong, toon lagoon and Suess landing).

    Studios is fun if you like movies. I love the nightime show, and the Monster Cafe. As far as attractions, they still have ET (a cute dark ride) and men in black (gotta love 60s style buildings and shot them up rides).

    Specifically Harry Potter - it depends on how big of a fan you are if you want to get a park hopper. The two lands are very interactive and are great for fans. Hogsmead in CA and FL are fairly similar (with FL having two additional rollercoasters). . If you do not have park hopping, you will miss the Hogwarts express (which is a fun ride and can have a long line in the afternoons). If you limit yourself to the studios, even on the busiest days Orlando's Gringott's usually does not have more than an hour wait. (You cannot There is also single rider line. Orlando's Diagnon Alley is a great experience and I would recommend also seeing the two shows there. However, you can skip the wand experience in either park. The last time I checked (last year) express pass did not work on the harry potter rides.

    Hope that helps.

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    • #3
      I strongly caution against trying to do two parks in one day in July, especially without Express. These are definitely not half day parks during peak season. If you only want to see Wizarding World, you can, but the more money you spend to see only one or two lands, the more of a waste it is IMO. You'll need to weigh the contents of each park and decide which one interests you more. If you have any intentions of returning in the near future, you may also want to consider that USF currently has a Fast & Furious ride under construction, while IOA is rumored to be replacing the coasters in Hogsmeade soon, potentially for something more family-oriented & still Potter themed.

      Originally posted by kcnole View Post
      Second question, if we do just one I'm thinking Universal Studios makes more sense over IOA, especially since my son doesn't like coasters. Thoughts?
      IOA only has three large coasters compared to USF's one. That being said, IOA does have the more thrilling roster of attractions overall. Something to think about. Just remember to bring a change of clothes if you choose IOA. The water rides are like jumping into a pool.


      Originally posted by jvsett View Post
      The last time I checked (last year) express pass did not work on the harry potter rides.
      It does now.
      Last edited by JtnOrl; 07-15-2017, 03:46 AM.

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