Universal Studios in September

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Universal Studios in September

So I have only been to "the other parks" one time in my life and that was five years ago. Adam really wants to go. Although I am bumming because that is one less Disney day I think I have been able to set aside one day, September 15th for Universal for both parks.
Five years ago we were able to do all in one day, though we skipped some stuff and some things were closed. I am hoping because that day will be the day before the Halloween Horror night begins it will not be that crowded and the lines will be low. We went in September 5 years ago and it was pretty low crowds we only waited for 30 minutes for Hogwarts Castle ride and then my uncle and mom rode Rip Rocket and it was about a 45-60 minutes wait. I don't do rollercoasters. Other than the Mummy, that was one ok.
I am also cringing at the $310 price tag for us on one day tickets.
Any tips, hints, or money saving ideas would be great on this one because I really have no clue.

Should we head straight to Diagon Alley do all that, and then take the Hogwarts Express to Hogsmead do that and go back around? I don't think we would do Whoville or any of the kids stuff or shows, just because we only have one day.

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I do recommend getting a refillable mug. You can buy one for like $9 and use it all day at coke freestyle machines or buy one for like $6 and then get refills at restaurants/stand for 99 cents. I would probably say hit Harry Potter first if that's what you care more about. Make sure you ride Hogwarts Express both ways.

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If you're only interested in doing Harry Potter, then you'll need to get the park hopper ticket to make the most of it as they straddle IoA and Studios.

The parks can be done in a day, but as with all things Disney, you will need to have an idea of what you want to do. Although I didn't plan, I did manage to do Studios, IoA and Harry Potter with my parents in a day. We managed to ride most of the roller coasters, although my parents sat out Rip-Rock-It but they did something of everything - ET, Spider-Man, Transformers, Minions, Ride Through Hogswart, Gringotts, the train between Hogsmeade and King's Cross (you need the park hopper to be able to ride this), The Mummy, Disaster! and the Dr Seuss Train in the Sky, although that might actually be it! We started around 9 and finished at 5.30 and walked through pretty much every area bar the kid's area at the back where Woody Woodpecker is. I did a couple of extra rides which gave my folks a chance to rest and we had a few rest points throughout the day.

BTW, we went left rather than right...not sure if that works in the same way as it did at Disney, but it gave us a chance on some of the more popular rides first...

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Mandy wrote:
I do recommend getting a refillable mug. You can buy one for like $9 and use it all day at coke freestyle machines or buy one for like $6 and then get refills at restaurants/stand for 99 cents. I would probably say hit Harry Potter first if that's what you care more about. Make sure you ride Hogwarts Express both ways.

Oh good idea. I do want to try Butter Beer though, I never got to try it last time we went.

Sid Man wrote:
If you're only interested in doing Harry Potter, then you'll need to get the park hopper ticket to make the most of it as they straddle IoA and Studios.

The parks can be done in a day, but as with all things Disney, you will need to have an idea of what you want to do. Although I didn't plan, I did manage to do Studios, IoA and Harry Potter with my parents in a day. We managed to ride most of the roller coasters, although my parents sat out Rip-Rock-It but they did something of everything - ET, Spider-Man, Transformers, Minions, Ride Through Hogswart, Gringotts, the train between Hogsmeade and King's Cross (you need the park hopper to be able to ride this), The Mummy, Disaster! and the Dr Seuss Train in the Sky, although that might actually be it! We started around 9 and finished at 5.30 and walked through pretty much every area bar the kid's area at the back where Woody Woodpecker is. I did a couple of extra rides which gave my folks a chance to rest and we had a few rest points throughout the day.

BTW, we went left rather than right...not sure if that works in the same way as it did at Disney, but it gave us a chance on some of the more popular rides first...

I am a Harry Potter freak so that is what I am most excited for. Honestly if it didn't have Harry Potter I probably wouldn't even bother going. However Adam is more interested in some of the other things they have to offer such as the Roller Coaster, which I hands down will not do.
Last time I went five years ago only Hogsmead was open so we went and did that first. Ride the Hogwarts ride, the Hyphogrph checked out some of the cool things, did not do Dueling Dragons, as I do not do coasters. Then we worked our way back. We hit Jurassic Park next, which we got soaked on as we were the only ones on it and everyone else wanted to sit in the front. waiting I also don't like drops but this one wasn't so bad.
I don't know if its new or was there when we went but I definitely want to check out the Jurassic Park Museum thing they have that looks the place in the movie.
The next thing we hit was Ripsaw Falls, hey why not we were already wet, well we got wetter! I was soaked down to my skivvies! Note for this time pack an extra bag of clothes! Popeye's River Barges was closes. Then we got into the comic stuff. We rode Spider Man which was fun. And then they went on Doctor Doom and then the Hulk. Then we ate lunch, and might I mention we were still soaked! Then we went to the Universal Side and walked down the streets which was cool. Rode Disaster which seemed to take FOREVER! We did the Mummy ride, Men in Black, Jaws, I wanted to ride the Simpsons but it was a really long wait time. Then my Uncle and Mom went on Rip Rocket and myself and my grandpa got and ice cream and waited for them. After that we stopped at a couple of gift shops got some souvenirs and left by 6pm.
I feel like there is a ton more stuff there now, with the additions of Diagon Alley, Hogwarts Express, Minion Mayhem, and Kong should be open when we go.
I am not sure if Adam is going to want to do the coasters without me or not, but I wish he would if he wants to.
Does anyone think it will be crowded on a Thursday in September where we would need the fast pass thing that they offer?

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Universal is worth a day. Absolutely.

Do get the refillable mug, the one you can fill on your own at the Coke Freestyle machines. Unless one of you is really squeamish about sharing, you only need the one. But also do spring for Butterbeer. Have lunch at the Leaky Cauldron, the food is good and you can get your Butterbeer with your meal.

Start at Diagon Alley. Take your time and do/see EVERYTHING because this is the best Universal has to offer. Then take the train to Islands of Adventure for a quick spin around Hogsmeade, but don't linger here since you've seen it before.

Make a list of your top few non-Potter rides at each park. Do the ones at IoA then train back to Diagon Alley and do the ones there. If you still have park time after that, you'll already have had a great day.

We've never gotten the Express Pass. Crowds are low in September so it really shouldn't be a problem, especially on a weekday.

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We didn't do fastpass at Universal when we went at the backend of October a couple of years back - even though it was near Halloween, it was manageable without having to rush.

So Diagon Alley - Gringott's Bank Chase (or whatever they call it) is a 4D rollercoaster in the dark...! To warn you, there is a drop immediately after you set off and because it's in the dark, you will not be able to see to brace yourself. The ride also spins around at set points to let you watch the 4D video before setting off again. Diagon Alley is huge, it seems bigger than Hogsmeade even though it's squeezed into an 'alley'. Money-saving tip: strap your purse inside clingfilm, then bag it, clingfilm that bag and then put it at the bottom of your bag underneath a load of stuff...it's incredibly tempting to spend a fortune on paraphernalia in Diagon Alley alone, what with the wand shop, 'school uniform' shops, the Leaky Cauldron....

Minion Mayhem can be a long wait...seems everyone can't get enough of being a tiny yellow tic-tac that can only say banana...!

Duelling Dragons has a habit (for me at least) of breaking down...one of the tracks - I can't remember if it's the red or blue one - always seems to stop for ages on take off. The last time I went on it, it was stopped on the up ramp for probably 5-10 minutes before it finally took off. I watched at least 3 of the other track go through - so much for duelling dragons!

As CCP says, make a list of the non-Potter stuff you want to do, then you can set a route out for it, but remember if you want to do the Hogswart Express, you will need a park hopper ticket. You will need to share compartments with other people, so I hope you don't get the family we got when we went...with no offence to anyone, they did look like they'd come out of an Adam Sandler movie...!

To me, going via IoA is possibly the best way to go as it gets the thrill rides out of the way, leaving you to relax on the way out through Studios.

Personally, I'm looking forward to Skull Island if it's open when I get there in October!

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Thanks CCP! Now I am going to try to find a website that has GF stuff for Universal. I found tons of Disney ones. Hopefully there is a good choice like at Disney!

Sid Man wrote:

So Diagon Alley - Gringott's Bank Chase (or whatever they call it) is a 4D rollercoaster in the dark...! To warn you, there is a drop immediately after you set off and because it's in the dark, you will not be able to see to brace yourself. The ride also spins around at set points to let you watch the 4D video before setting off again.

Personally, I'm looking forward to Skull Island if it's open when I get there in October!

Darn, I didn't think this was a coaster. I thought it was more like the Spiderman Motion ride at IOA. Although it felt like you were falling in that one. It didn't bother me as much because I knew it wasn't real.

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FutureMrsHurst wrote:
Sid Man wrote:

So Diagon Alley - Gringott's Bank Chase (or whatever they call it) is a 4D rollercoaster in the dark...! To warn you, there is a drop immediately after you set off and because it's in the dark, you will not be able to see to brace yourself. The ride also spins around at set points to let you watch the 4D video before setting off again.

Personally, I'm looking forward to Skull Island if it's open when I get there in October!

Darn, I didn't think this was a coaster. I thought it was more like the Spiderman Motion ride at IOA. Although it felt like you were falling in that one. It didn't bother me as much because I knew it wasn't real.

In my opinion, Gringotts is very similar to the Forbidden Journey (Hogwarts ride). If you were ok on that, I think you'll be ok on Gringotts.

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Gringott's is still a nice ride though...it's not a massive drop and is going to be similar to Forbidden Journey.

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BarbaraB wrote:
FutureMrsHurst wrote:
Sid Man wrote:

So Diagon Alley - Gringott's Bank Chase (or whatever they call it) is a 4D rollercoaster in the dark...! To warn you, there is a drop immediately after you set off and because it's in the dark, you will not be able to see to brace yourself. The ride also spins around at set points to let you watch the 4D video before setting off again.

Personally, I'm looking forward to Skull Island if it's open when I get there in October!

Darn, I didn't think this was a coaster. I thought it was more like the Spiderman Motion ride at IOA. Although it felt like you were falling in that one. It didn't bother me as much because I knew it wasn't real.

In my opinion, Gringotts is very similar to the Forbidden Journey (Hogwarts ride). If you were ok on that, I think you'll be ok on Gringotts.

Sid Man wrote:
Gringott's is still a nice ride though...it's not a massive drop and is going to be similar to Forbidden Journey.

Ok Good I loved the Forbidden Journey Ride. I guess with the amount I am paying to get in I should at least try everything except rip rockit and the hulk. Although the Hulk seems like its very similar to Rockin Roller Coaster. But I feel like because I can't see the track on Rockin Roller Coaster I am more comfortable. Because I do really love the Rockin Roller Coaster, actually my favorite part is the loop and the corkscrew lol.
So Minion Mayem tends to get busy and I am a minion fan so I definitely want to hit that. So should that be a good one to hit first on the way to Diagon Alley? Or more towards the end of the night?

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You can hit the Minion ride on the way to Diagon Alley, it's not far inside the park entrance and you don't have to go out of your way to stop there. Do try to be at the park gates before park opening, though, so you won't waste a lot of time in line.

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crazycatperson wrote:
You can hit the Minion ride on the way to Diagon Alley, it's not far inside the park entrance and you don't have to go out of your way to stop there. Do try to be at the park gates before park opening, though, so you won't waste a lot of time in line.

I second that...try to be at the gates as early as you can, as buying tickets can be a chore and take ages.

I've attached a map so you can try to do some advanced route planning! Good luck!

FMH, you'll love the Gringott's ride!

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Ok that seems like a good plan. I plan on being there at least a half hour before the park opens. I an going to hire an Uber from POR in the morning. And I plan on purchasing tickets online forehand.

Now what do you guys think regular butter beer, frozen, or hot?

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I've always gotten regular butterbeer. I love it SOOOOO much and would be horribly disappointed to discover frozen and/or hot aren't quite as amazing.

Another awesome thing is the earl grey lavender ice cream at Florian Fortescue's in Diagon Alley. My favorite ice cream ever! And I can only get it there! Bummer!

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I personally love the hot but don't know if they serve that during the summer. Otherwise regular is my second choice. The frozen doesn't have enough flavor for me.

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I've only done regular butterbeer. The first time I had it, I thought 'well, that's quite sweet, so I shan't be doing that again too soon', only to go and buy lunch just 20 minutes later and ordering another butterbeer with it...! So much for it being too sweet! haha

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I was partial to the frozen myself.... now I need to try the hot. But only in January when it's like 65 degrees LOL

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Yeah in September its like 90 so I think I might skip the hot, maybe I will get one frozen and one regular and we both can share them! I finally found some Gluten Free menu's the best looking one for me looks like Jimmy Buffet's Margaretville. So maybe dinner there and a lunch somewhere or do a big lunch there and get dinner back at POR or Disney Springs, there are so many delicious choices in Disney Springs lol

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