Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

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Xrayman69
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Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by Xrayman69 »

Family Considering going to Orlando in mid February and/or mid April (midwinter break and spring break for the kid’s school schedule). Kid interested in the Harry Potter experiences at both of the universal studio theme parks.

Any suggestions on premium experiences. Time and experience higher priority than cost savings.

Will be in Orlando area for about 5-7 days depending on how things go. Looking at universal theme parks fro 2 days and parents would like Disney world for 1 day, Remaining days likely going to Kennedy Space center and a day of golf for dad. Remaining days if needed/wanted will be open and flexible as needed.
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rob
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Re: Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by rob »

Pay whatever it is... Made the mistake a few years ago of going on a whim and just did regular tickets..... A day of waiting in lines was punctuated by a couple of rides - miserable. Obviously in today's world the queues will be less....
| Rob | Its a dangerous business going out your front door. - J.R.R.Tolkien
Normchad
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Re: Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by Normchad »

I wouldn’t be going until the pandemic is resolved, but.......

We went a few years back for a milestone birthday. I made the mistake of telling the wife to buy whatever she wanted, and she bought this..... https://www.universalorlando.com/web/en ... lsrc=aw.ds

Very expensive. In a nutshell though, you will see or do everything you want to do in a day, and you will not ever wait in a line. This cuts in front of the fast pass people. You even enter the rides through a separate entrance, so you don’t have to bear the looks of derision and disgust as you hop right in in front of everybody else.....

They’re very nice parks. Had a good time.
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BogleFanGal
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Re: Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by BogleFanGal »

saw above poster linked you to Uni offerings. All the parks have versions of VIP tours - personal tours with a guide that give you front of line access and allow you to shape the day however you want, go on whatever attractions you choose, etc. Don't forget to factor in a 10-20% tip for the guide, if they do a good job. People rave about the Disney VIP tours - they assign their best castmembers to them. Can't speak to the Uni tours personally, as I haven't heard much. But I'm confident they'll be good.
Last edited by BogleFanGal on Sat Jan 16, 2021 1:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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anil686
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Re: Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by anil686 »

We did the premium experience in 2015 - it was outstanding. No waiting in lines and we did it in August. Agree that time and experience outweigh cost for our family in that situation - would recommend it over standard tickets where people were waiting for a while. Note, some Harry Potter experiences did not have the feature back then (Gringotts (spelling)) - but that may have changed....
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Nate79
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Re: Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by Nate79 »

Strange, I didn't see in OPs post where they asked for everyone's medical advice?
MDfan
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Re: Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by MDfan »

Speaking of golf, the Waldorf Astoria course near Disney Springs is one of the nicest-maintained courses I've played. Much better than the actual Disney Courses, I thought.
9liner
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Re: Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by 9liner »

[Quoted post removed by moderator Flyer24]

Except the OP was asking for neither health nor financial advice. Stick to the topic.

OP: We are not theme park folks but have many friends who are. Based on their advice, the VIP experiences are the only way to go if money is not a factor.
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Xrayman69
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Re: Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by Xrayman69 »

BogleFanGal wrote: Sat Jan 16, 2021 12:55 pm saw above poster linked you to Uni offerings. All the parks have versions of VIP tours - personal tours with a guide that give you front of line access and allow you to shape the day however you want, go on whatever attractions you choose, etc. Don't forget to factor in a 10-20% tip for the guide, if they do a good job. People rave about the Disney VIP tours - they assign their best castmembers to them. Can't speak to the Uni tours personally, as I haven't heard much. But I'm confident they'll be good.
Likely will be doing 2 days. 1 day at each park.

2 days with private VIP tour overkill? Or 1 day sufficient?
Lucinjo
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Re: Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by Lucinjo »

Rather than a VIP tour at Universal, I would recommend spending at least one night at a deluxe property onsite and 2 day park-to-park tickets for the family. You will receive 1 hour early admission into Harry Potter at one of the parks for 2 mornings(check in and check out day) and more importantly, express access to many of the most popular rides for the full 2 days. You can arrive and check-in at hotel early and walk or boat to the theme parks. Universal is much more compact than Disney World.
VIP tours at Disney are pricey but awesome. You can cover multiple parks, entering at back entrances close to the rides and using special lines to access the rides quickly. An VIP tour is somewhere between $450 to $650 an hour (depends on day of week and season) plus the cost of park hopper tickets for each member of the group. Figure a tip for your guide on top of this.
A great resource for planning are the Disboard forums.
jtdavid
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Re: Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by jtdavid »

We went the week before Thanksgiving 2019 and went back the same week in 2020. Had a great time. I would suggest two days are needed to fully explore Universal. The skip the line (Universal Express) tickets are worth it. Any time over two days I would suggest the different Disney parks. And Sea World has some great roller coasters. We stayed at the Royal Pacific hotel and it was fine but a little tired. Universal has a new hotel that just opened a month ago. I would try that one instead. In 2019 we stayed at Disney Boardwalk Resort and enjoyed it.

All the parks have excellent covid precautions in place. I was impressed.
Triple digit golfer
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Re: Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by Triple digit golfer »

Nate79 wrote: Sat Jan 16, 2021 1:22 pm Strange, I didn't see in OPs post where they asked for everyone's medical advice?
I think they were just politely informing him (from high upon a horse) about Covid in case they hadn't heard about it. It was rather nice of them to inform him of the risks, again, in case he has been hibernating or in a coma for the last year.
Rex66
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Re: Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by Rex66 »

How much better is this than express passes vs the additional cost

I assume with the vip u go on each ride once
Lexx
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Re: Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by Lexx »

1) I wouldn't go to any theme park during covid
2) Disney is really really overpriced. My wife took their travel agent courses and they are masters at squeezing every drop of money out of their customers. They even tell the agents how to appeal to grandparents for the money. Totally turned me off.
3) That being stated, if you have the means, the personal tour guides are very expensive but they get you access and you won't waste your entire day waiting in line.
4) The one hour early admission that comes with their overpriced hotels is nearly worthless. By the time you get into the park and walk all the way to your first ride, half of that time has already gone by. You'll be lucky to get an extra 2 or 3 rides in.
rockstar
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Re: Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by rockstar »

I once did Gringotts at Universal four times in a row via single rider.

You don't need a VIP experience to get a good Universal vacation. If you want to pay up, stay at one of the on property hotels. Some offer an express pass line, but I'm not sure if those are running now. But I'd give yourself 3-4 days to fully enjoy the parks.
Normchad
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Re: Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by Normchad »

Rex66 wrote: Sat Jan 16, 2021 5:41 pm How much better is this than express passes vs the additional cost

I assume with the vip u go on each ride once
With the express pass, you will go into a line for express pass holders. A lot of people buy these passes. Our guide at universal said that the goal for express pass was that you wouldn’t wait more than half as long as everybody else. So if the typical wait time was 60 minutes, then you would expect to wait 30 minutes or less with an express pass. I’m sure though in a lot of cases the express pass wait time is quite minimal.

With the VIP tour, you don’t wait in a line, ever. You are escorted directly to the ride loading area, so you are seated before anybody with an express pass.

My take away was that I could adequately see everything in the both parks in a single day, just because there was no time wasted waiting in lines. So normally I might have gone for 2 days, but a single day was plenty with the VIP pass.

Note that most people in our party were very tired at the end. Since there was no waiting in line, we were moving and walking the entire time. Covered an awful lot of miles that day.

The tour guide we had was amazing. So good. And we got two free meals, in a private venue, that were actually pretty good.

Warning though: doing this is substantial lifestyle creep. You might not be able to tolerate waiting in lines for rides ever again.
Cautionary Tale
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Re: Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by Cautionary Tale »

Islands of Adventure is opening a world class rollercoaster soon. Probably not open by February, but should be open by April. If it were me, I would be sure to be there in April.
bbqguru
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Re: Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by bbqguru »

Worth every penny. Went last Christmas and made the mistake of going the morning without the fast pass. After waiting too long in the first line, I gladly went over and paid for the unlimited fast pass. We never waited in line more than 20 minutes, and that was on the super popular rides. Worth every penny, did I already mention that?
Trader Joe
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Re: Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by Trader Joe »

Xrayman69 wrote: Sat Jan 16, 2021 12:11 pm Family Considering going to Orlando in mid February and/or mid April (midwinter break and spring break for the kid’s school schedule). Kid interested in the Harry Potter experiences at both of the universal studio theme parks.

Any suggestions on premium experiences. Time and experience higher priority than cost savings.

Will be in Orlando area for about 5-7 days depending on how things go. Looking at universal theme parks fro 2 days and parents would like Disney world for 1 day, Remaining days likely going to Kennedy Space center and a day of golf for dad. Remaining days if needed/wanted will be open and flexible as needed.
It sounds like a great trip that should create great memories for decades to come.
Carguy85
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Re: Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by Carguy85 »

As cheap of a guy as I am I could almost wrap my head around the cost especially if my bro’s and our families used the service together (10 of us total). Interestingly enough we went late January one year thinking it would be less crowded...absolutely no different than when we went Memorial Day weekend. After reading about the VIP service it seems a day is probably more than adequate for an outstanding experience at a given park. Thanks for getting the wheels turning! Unfortunately I’m fresh out of any unsolicited moral superiority to offer.
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Re: Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by basspond »

Five years ago we stayed at the Portofino Hotel in July. There was only one Harry Potter World then. By staying on property the Universal Express was a perk. We did most if not all of the major rides by early afternoon on both parks. We went to Harry Potter later in the day and waited in line less then an hour. The second day was early admission to Harry Potter for guests. No line then. By lunch we were through with what we wanted to do and went to our Disney hotel.

We just came back from doing Disney for 1 day (we choose Animal Kingdom because we hadn’t been to Avatar land). Our biggest mistake was waiting 40 minutes for the shuttle when we should have driven there (didn’t realize that parking was free for Disney Hotel guests). After buying park ticket you have to make a reservation for the park you are going to.

As far as safety protocol, you have to wear a mask (no buffs I found out the hard way). The cast members were busy telling people they couldn’t drop their masks while taking pictures. Besides Avatar (45 minutes at end of day) the longest we had to wait was 15 minutes for a ride. All lines are socially distance so the queues run way outside the attractions. I do have to say that the Avatar ride was the best virtual ride I have been on. Have fun.
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Re: Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by humblecoder »

Xrayman69 wrote: Sat Jan 16, 2021 12:11 pm Family Considering going to Orlando in mid February and/or mid April (midwinter break and spring break for the kid’s school schedule). Kid interested in the Harry Potter experiences at both of the universal studio theme parks.

Any suggestions on premium experiences. Time and experience higher priority than cost savings.

Will be in Orlando area for about 5-7 days depending on how things go. Looking at universal theme parks fro 2 days and parents would like Disney world for 1 day, Remaining days likely going to Kennedy Space center and a day of golf for dad. Remaining days if needed/wanted will be open and flexible as needed.
Note that this advice is pre-COVID, so I can't speak to what changes have been made at the theme parks in light of COVID. In other words, please fact check me.

We have been the Universal Orlando twice. If you stay at certain "premium" Universal Orlando resort hotels, you get a FREE Universal Express Unlimited PASS which allows you to access the express line at most rides (there were a few rides that were exempt). This was an amazing benefit and allowed us to ride more of the rides since the lines were much shorter. Staying at a Universal Orlando hotel also allowed for early park entry which was nice since this allowed you to get to some of the premium rides before the parks were opened to the general public.

If you are only going to Universal for 2 days, you can book 1 night at the hotel and you get the benefit both on your check in and check out days. I think this benefit alone is worth the cost of the room.

We stayed at both the Hard Rock Hotel and the Royal Pacific which both had this benefit. Also, both hotels are in walking distance of the park entrance, so this saves you quite a bit of time. Both hotels have their pros and cons. I thought the Royal Pacific was absolutely beautiful and it had a great pool. However, it was a slightly longer walk to the parks (5 mins vs 10 mins). Hard Rock was kind of meh (although I suppose if you are a big music fan you might have a different opinion), but the location was slightly closer.

Some other Universal Orlando recommendations:
1. If you want to ride the Hogwarts Express, you need to get the "2 park" ticket (which allows you to enter multiple parks in one day). The Hogwarts Express essentially takes you from "Islands of Adventure" to "Universal Studios Park" (or vice versa) which is why the 2 park pass is needed.

2. See the Ollivanders wand show. If your kid is lucky, he might be chosen to have the wand choose the wizard (this might only make sense if you are a Harry Potter fan). You can buy the wants without doing the experience, but the experience is pretty cool for fans of the franchise. Also, the wands are interactive with many different park elements, so that is pretty neat.

3. Eat at the Toothsome Chocolate Emporium on the City Walk. The food is great (especially the insane milkshakes) and the experience is very unique. It has a steampunk vibe to it, and they have actors walking around in character who add to the ambiance.

4. Try to enter the park as early as possible so you can ride the rides before the crowds start to build up. This is the single biggest piece of advice for any popular theme park. We usually get up early, hit the rides, have lunch, go to our hotel to rest up/nap/pool, and then head back in the late afternoon early evening.

I also have experience with Walt Disney World, and if you are only going for a day, then you will not get to see much. WDW is 4 separate theme parks, each of which requires at least 1-2 days in order to fully experience it, especially during peak times. If you haven't been there and you only have a day, go to the Magic Kingdom, since that is what most people associate with WDW (Main Street USA, the castle, etc).

With COVID, I know that they are limiting the number of guests, so you need to make a park reservation in order to get in. If you plan to visit one of the WDW parks, do this ASAP, especially since you are going at a peak time. If you just show up without a park reservation, you might be disappointed.

WDW has VIP tours which might be the way to go on a crowded park day especially if you only have 1 day there. They are expensive but as you aren't concerned about cost, I would consider this as a way to maximize your time as the VIP tours allow you to skip the lines. The format of the tours may have changed with COVID, so do your homework on what is available. I have never done a tour personally, so my knowledge is only second hand.

WDW is not something for those who like to play it by ear, since many of the dining, tours, reservations, fill up months in advance. If you want to do a tour, I would book it ASAP to make sure you aren't shut out.
ddurrett896
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Re: Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by ddurrett896 »

Get a guide for the day. 10 person limit and it was like $2k for the day.

They know where everything is and escort you around the park, let you skip all the lines and kids can ride the same ride over and over. Not cheap, but you can cram 4 days of park time into a single day.
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Re: Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by Flyer24 »

Numerous posts related to covid risks (medical) have been deleted. Stay on topic please with the original question.
smitcat
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Re: Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by smitcat »

Lexx wrote: Sat Jan 16, 2021 5:44 pm 1) I wouldn't go to any theme park during covid
2) Disney is really really overpriced. My wife took their travel agent courses and they are masters at squeezing every drop of money out of their customers. They even tell the agents how to appeal to grandparents for the money. Totally turned me off.
3) That being stated, if you have the means, the personal tour guides are very expensive but they get you access and you won't waste your entire day waiting in line.
4) The one hour early admission that comes with their overpriced hotels is nearly worthless. By the time you get into the park and walk all the way to your first ride, half of that time has already gone by. You'll be lucky to get an extra 2 or 3 rides in.
"4) The one hour early admission that comes with their overpriced hotels is nearly worthless. By the time you get into the park and walk all the way to your first ride, half of that time has already gone by. You'll be lucky to get an extra 2 or 3 rides in."
With the early admissions we are able to ride at least 3 major rides with no wait before the hour is up.

"1) I wouldn't go to any theme park during covid"
There are a few differences now...
- great covid protocols , better at U -Studios than Disney
- attendance limited to about 35% but often much lower
- lines are much shorter in time but longer in length
- many opportunuties to virtual ordering for food, lines, and admittances
With fast passes the lines were almost walk in and even without the lines were not nearly as long except for Galaxies Edge
smitcat
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Re: Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by smitcat »

Normchad wrote: Sat Jan 16, 2021 8:37 pm
Rex66 wrote: Sat Jan 16, 2021 5:41 pm How much better is this than express passes vs the additional cost

I assume with the vip u go on each ride once
With the express pass, you will go into a line for express pass holders. A lot of people buy these passes. Our guide at universal said that the goal for express pass was that you wouldn’t wait more than half as long as everybody else. So if the typical wait time was 60 minutes, then you would expect to wait 30 minutes or less with an express pass. I’m sure though in a lot of cases the express pass wait time is quite minimal.

With the VIP tour, you don’t wait in a line, ever. You are escorted directly to the ride loading area, so you are seated before anybody with an express pass.

My take away was that I could adequately see everything in the both parks in a single day, just because there was no time wasted waiting in lines. So normally I might have gone for 2 days, but a single day was plenty with the VIP pass.

Note that most people in our party were very tired at the end. Since there was no waiting in line, we were moving and walking the entire time. Covered an awful lot of miles that day.

The tour guide we had was amazing. So good. And we got two free meals, in a private venue, that were actually pretty good.

Warning though: doing this is substantial lifestyle creep. You might not be able to tolerate waiting in lines for rides ever again.
"So if the typical wait time was 60 minutes, then you would expect to wait 30 minutes or less with an express pass. I’m sure though in a lot of cases the express pass wait time is quite minimal."
In 2020 (November) we had just about a zero wait with the express passes that were included with the stay at Royal Pacific which also had a great pricing deal due to low attendence.

"My take away was that I could adequately see everything in the both parks in a single day, just because there was no time wasted waiting in lines. So normally I might have gone for 2 days, but a single day was plenty with the VIP pass."
Some of us like different rides and also like to repeat some rides a number of times - that along with the desire to watch some specific shows and eat or drink at some favorite locations meant two days were a minimum.
Topic Author
Xrayman69
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Re: Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by Xrayman69 »

humblecoder wrote: Sun Jan 17, 2021 12:15 am
Xrayman69 wrote: Sat Jan 16, 2021 12:11 pm Family Considering going to Orlando in mid February and/or mid April (midwinter break and spring break for the kid’s school schedule). Kid interested in the Harry Potter experiences at both of the universal studio theme parks.

Any suggestions on premium experiences. Time and experience higher priority than cost savings.

Will be in Orlando area for about 5-7 days depending on how things go. Looking at universal theme parks fro 2 days and parents would like Disney world for 1 day, Remaining days likely going to Kennedy Space center and a day of golf for dad. Remaining days if needed/wanted will be open and flexible as needed.
Note that this advice is pre-COVID, so I can't speak to what changes have been made at the theme parks in light of COVID. In other words, please fact check me.

We have been the Universal Orlando twice. If you stay at certain "premium" Universal Orlando resort hotels, you get a FREE Universal Express Unlimited PASS which allows you to access the express line at most rides (there were a few rides that were exempt). This was an amazing benefit and allowed us to ride more of the rides since the lines were much shorter. Staying at a Universal Orlando hotel also allowed for early park entry which was nice since this allowed you to get to some of the premium rides before the parks were opened to the general public.

If you are only going to Universal for 2 days, you can book 1 night at the hotel and you get the benefit both on your check in and check out days. I think this benefit alone is worth the cost of the room.

We stayed at both the Hard Rock Hotel and the Royal Pacific which both had this benefit. Also, both hotels are in walking distance of the park entrance, so this saves you quite a bit of time. Both hotels have their pros and cons. I thought the Royal Pacific was absolutely beautiful and it had a great pool. However, it was a slightly longer walk to the parks (5 mins vs 10 mins). Hard Rock was kind of meh (although I suppose if you are a big music fan you might have a different opinion), but the location was slightly closer.

Some other Universal Orlando recommendations:
1. If you want to ride the Hogwarts Express, you need to get the "2 park" ticket (which allows you to enter multiple parks in one day). The Hogwarts Express essentially takes you from "Islands of Adventure" to "Universal Studios Park" (or vice versa) which is why the 2 park pass is needed.

2. See the Ollivanders wand show. If your kid is lucky, he might be chosen to have the wand choose the wizard (this might only make sense if you are a Harry Potter fan). You can buy the wants without doing the experience, but the experience is pretty cool for fans of the franchise. Also, the wands are interactive with many different park elements, so that is pretty neat.

3. Eat at the Toothsome Chocolate Emporium on the City Walk. The food is great (especially the insane milkshakes) and the experience is very unique. It has a steampunk vibe to it, and they have actors walking around in character who add to the ambiance.

4. Try to enter the park as early as possible so you can ride the rides before the crowds start to build up. This is the single biggest piece of advice for any popular theme park. We usually get up early, hit the rides, have lunch, go to our hotel to rest up/nap/pool, and then head back in the late afternoon early evening.

I also have experience with Walt Disney World, and if you are only going for a day, then you will not get to see much. WDW is 4 separate theme parks, each of which requires at least 1-2 days in order to fully experience it, especially during peak times. If you haven't been there and you only have a day, go to the Magic Kingdom, since that is what most people associate with WDW (Main Street USA, the castle, etc).

With COVID, I know that they are limiting the number of guests, so you need to make a park reservation in order to get in. If you plan to visit one of the WDW parks, do this ASAP, especially since you are going at a peak time. If you just show up without a park reservation, you might be disappointed.

WDW has VIP tours which might be the way to go on a crowded park day especially if you only have 1 day there. They are expensive but as you aren't concerned about cost, I would consider this as a way to maximize your time as the VIP tours allow you to skip the lines. The format of the tours may have changed with COVID, so do your homework on what is available. I have never done a tour personally, so my knowledge is only second hand.

WDW is not something for those who like to play it by ear, since many of the dining, tours, reservations, fill up months in advance. If you want to do a tour, I would book it ASAP to make sure you aren't shut out.
The ollivanders wand show sounds like something the kid would really enjoy. Thanks for this useful tip.

Our family has experienced Disneyland many many times in the past (spouse and I grew up as kids in SoCal). Kid has been to Disneyland several times in the past. Day at WDW more for spouse and I nostalgia (we have gone to WDW before having kid several times and I was meh...., we are actually fine not going to WDW unless kid has some inclination or expresses interest).
stoptothink
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Re: Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by stoptothink »

Pandemic Bangs wrote: Sat Jan 16, 2021 7:00 pm
Triple digit golfer wrote: Sat Jan 16, 2021 5:34 pm I think they were just politely informing him (from high upon a horse) about Covid in case they hadn't heard about it. It was rather nice of them to inform him of the risks, again, in case he has been hibernating or in a coma for the last year.
People here do try to be helpful. Some of the best advice I've gotten here was not in direct response to my questions but rather in questioning my underlying assumptions supporting the question.

I fail to understand why this is even a remotely touchy subject on this forum. I guess that says something. It is always amazing what some people, myself included, do not know so it never hurts to mention it, imo.
Because there is zero chance OP isn't fully aware of the situation (and making a choice knowing the risks), unless they were in a coma all of last year. You're not offering any new information or advice, you're offering moral judgement.
Topic Author
Xrayman69
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Re: Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by Xrayman69 »

ddurrett896 wrote: Sun Jan 17, 2021 12:24 am Get a guide for the day. 10 person limit and it was like $2k for the day.

They know where everything is and escort you around the park, let you skip all the lines and kids can ride the same ride over and over. Not cheap, but you can cram 4 days of park time into a single day.
It will be our family of 3. The cost is fine. Given the efficiency and other posts feedback, it sounds like we will only require 1 full day of the Private VIP experience. The second day (maybe a day or two later) we will just get the unlimited fast pass at a more leisurely (less frantic pace due to having a bit more insight and prior experience)

I presume with a 2 park access ticket the concierge for the private VIP experience will be able to accommodate both parks? I also presume seating for any of the Harry Potter shows will be accommodated efficiently (not have to sit in the seat for 30-45 minutes waiting for start of show).

My spouse prefer to NOT stay at a resort hotels as the lodgings are not our preference. Our family will be making arrangements for a private residence within Rental car driving or private car drop off range (VRBO-ish or Airbnb-ish).

Does the concierge dine with our family? I would prefer to have my family dine alone (while our masks are down and faces exposed) and provide the concierge with a break for an hour or so.
Normchad
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Re: Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by Normchad »

Xrayman69 wrote: Sun Jan 17, 2021 11:11 am
ddurrett896 wrote: Sun Jan 17, 2021 12:24 am Get a guide for the day. 10 person limit and it was like $2k for the day.

They know where everything is and escort you around the park, let you skip all the lines and kids can ride the same ride over and over. Not cheap, but you can cram 4 days of park time into a single day.
It will be our family of 3. The cost is fine. Given the efficiency and other posts feedback, it sounds like we will only require 1 full day of the Private VIP experience. The second day (maybe a day or two later) we will just get the unlimited fast pass at a more leisurely (less frantic pace due to having a bit more insight and prior experience)

I presume with a 2 park access ticket the concierge for the private VIP experience will be able to accommodate both parks? I also presume seating for any of the Harry Potter shows will be accommodated efficiently (not have to sit in the seat for 30-45 minutes waiting for start of show).

My spouse prefer to NOT stay at a resort hotels as the lodgings are not our preference. Our family will be making arrangements for a private residence within Rental car driving or private car drop off range (VRBO-ish or Airbnb-ish).

Does the concierge dine with our family? I would prefer to have my family dine alone (while our masks are down and faces exposed) and provide the concierge with a break for an hour or so.
Here is a pretty good write up of the experience. https://thepointsguy.com/guide/what-rea ... -vip-tour/

Our guide did not eat with us...... I’m sure they will have the meals setup so that you can comply with current health safety recommendations. But you could call to make sure it’s what you’re looking for.
Thegame14
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Joined: Mon May 07, 2018 11:53 am

Re: Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by Thegame14 »

Xrayman69 wrote: Sat Jan 16, 2021 12:11 pm Family Considering going to Orlando in mid February and/or mid April (midwinter break and spring break for the kid’s school schedule). Kid interested in the Harry Potter experiences at both of the universal studio theme parks.
February or April 2022? 2023?
stan1
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Re: Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by stan1 »

I'd still want to do refundable and last minute arrangements when refundable is not possible.

Give yourself options to make a final risk assessment a week before your departure.

As far as the premium packages have not done them at Universal but have at other parks. The perks are nice but we found the line cutting in particular to be a little socially awkward. You get what you pay for, just felt awkward to us.
Flyer24
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Re: Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by Flyer24 »

Once again, this is not a Covid discussion. Please stick with the OP’s question. Another post was deleted.
Topic Author
Xrayman69
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Joined: Fri Jun 01, 2018 8:52 pm

Re: Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by Xrayman69 »

Thegame14 wrote: Sun Jan 17, 2021 1:10 pm
Xrayman69 wrote: Sat Jan 16, 2021 12:11 pm Family Considering going to Orlando in mid February and/or mid April (midwinter break and spring break for the kid’s school schedule). Kid interested in the Harry Potter experiences at both of the universal studio theme parks.
February or April 2022? 2023?
2022
ddurrett896
Posts: 1506
Joined: Wed Nov 05, 2014 3:23 pm

Re: Universal theme parks Orlando: premium experience

Post by ddurrett896 »

Xrayman69 wrote: Sun Jan 17, 2021 11:11 am Does the concierge dine with our family? I would prefer to have my family dine alone (while our masks are down and faces exposed) and provide the concierge with a break for an hour or so.
We ate breakfast with the princesses and they were there, but not sitting with us. Lunch was out in the park and the guides sat by themselves.

We stayed outside of the park in a rented house. They picked us up in a van already loaded with car seats and drive us into the park. Got out behind the scenes and walked maybe 50’ and was Inside the park. Well worth it.
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