Universal & IOA help needed!

Saturday, July 28, 2007 1:04 PM
I will be heading to IOA and Universal Studios Florida next wed and thurs. I was wondering what the must do things are at both parks as well as how long the lines usually are this time of year. I am also interested in how the weather usually is this time of year. I have heard they get alot of rain and thunderstorms. If they do get rain and storms what attractions close? Thank you!
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Saturday, July 28, 2007 2:46 PM
It's July/August. It will be busy and there will be long lines.
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Saturday, July 28, 2007 2:58 PM
Two days will be fine to see it all, save for a show here or there. Arrive just before the 9am opening and Islands of Adventure is a breeze. Arrive at 11am or so and you'll pay the price with longer lines.

I'll give you the quick nickel tour of IOA (someone else can kick in USF).

Getting there just as the park opens means that you can go left at the end of Port of Entry and practically walk on to Hulk or Spider-Man. Do Dr. Doom third -- or hit it later in the day using the little-used single rider line. Skip Storm Force Accelatron. You can do it later in the day with no lines.

Then head off to Toon Lagoon. It'll be too early for most to hit the two water rides there (Popeye, Dudley) but now is the time to hit them as walk-ons.

Then you have Jurassic Park. You need to have a small kid to ride Pteranadon Flyers. It's a slow loader but if you're still ahead of the pack it shouldn't be too bad. Jurassic Park River Adventure is the marquee ride there. Might as well hit it, especially after Toon Lagoon's water rides, though the lines there move pretty quickly later in the day too (capacity of about 2500 per hour).

Lost Continent is next. Flying Unicorn is there for the credit. Dueling Dragons is worth riding both sides as they are completely different rides. If you need a front seat ride on any coaster, do it on Ice. The castle wall alone is worth it. Overall, IMO, Fire is the better overall ride.

At this point you can do Poseidon's Fury, it shouldn't be too crowded yet. Then you're off to Seuss. You'll run into crowds here. Even if you don't have young 'uns, you'll still want to try the Cat in the Hat ride.

At this point you've gone full circle. Exhale. Then REALLY start to enjoy the park the second time around. Do Storm Force, Dr. Doom single-rider, and Spider-Man has a single-rider too. Take in any of the Marvel characters walking about. The same goes for Toon Lagoon, and even if you don't have kids you can check out Olive's Boat, go upstairs, and soak folks on the Bluto ride below. If it's hot, the Jurassic Park Discovery Center has a lot of neat diversions. It's also a great place to pass the time if/when the afternoon thunderstorms creep in.

In Lost Continent, check out the Sindbad show AND hang out by the fountain in front when it comes "alive" and starts spewing jokes and soaking kids. Seuss also has a lot of neat exploring areas like The Lorax story.

I've rambled, which is why I won't kick in with the USF side (only to tell you to use the single-rider lines in Men in Black and Mummy, HUGE time savers).

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Saturday, July 28, 2007 6:14 PM
Actually Jeff from what I understand alot of people travel to Florida for Spring Break and Christmas since it's cold in most of the country then. We looked to book plane tickets in Feb and it was alot more expensive than July. I think alot of people say why go to Florida in the summer when it's warm at home. It's also hurricane season if I'm not mistaken. *** Edited 7/28/2007 10:15:04 PM UTC by OP AWESOME***
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Saturday, July 28, 2007 6:44 PM
^Only things I'll add are these two:

First, use the weather to YOUR advantage. Those storms can help clear the place out a little, so lower-capacity rides and water rides can be had...

Second, esp. if you have no kids, I'd go DIRECTLY to the Pteranodon Flyers...otherwise you may not get to ride at all.

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Saturday, July 28, 2007 8:37 PM

OP AWESOME said:
Actually Jeff from what I understand alot of people travel to Florida for Spring Break and Christmas since it's cold in most of the country then. We looked to book plane tickets in Feb and it was alot more expensive than July. I think alot of people say why go to Florida in the summer when it's warm at home. It's also hurricane season if I'm not mistaken. *** Edited 7/28/2007 10:15:04 PM UTC by OP AWESOME***

But its winter in the Southern Hemisphere, which equals lots of South Americans. The only time I visited Orlando in the summer, we couldnt touch an E ticket ride under 3 hours. This was in 96, so I dont know if it has gotten any better, but I doubt it.

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Sunday, July 29, 2007 12:37 AM
In my experience working at IOA in 2000-01, Most summer thunderstorms occurred nearly every few days in the afternoon but they only lasted about a half hour. I observed that most of the time an afternoon thunderstorms would cut the parks attendance in half for the rest of the day.

Late Summer is a very busy time to go. I've seen Spiderman have a 2-3 hour wait before. Why not spend the extra cash at Universal/Lowes hotels to get front of the line access? They'll only charge you 2 or 3 Hundred Dollars a night, and come on, it a vacation right?

Agreed about P-Flyers. Get to the park early and run straight to it. It's located just inside Camp Jurassic. They won't let adults on without children once Camp Jurassic gets busy. That ride has horrible capacity and the line could be an hour or more when the park is slow. It's short but unique and exciting, especially the last few swings.

When I worked there, they let people in the park 30-60 minutes earlier than the posted opening time.

And do not miss the talking fountain in Lost Continent. It's one of the funniest things I've ever seen. I wonder what's going to happen to it when harry potter takes over? Maybe it'll stay right there.

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Sunday, July 29, 2007 8:59 AM
I wouldn't worry about the thunderstorms either, they roll in and roll out in no time at all.
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Sunday, July 29, 2007 2:30 PM
Everyone agrees that 2 days is plenty though right?
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Sunday, July 29, 2007 7:31 PM
Two days is enough for the average person. My gf and I prefer a day at each park, and a third day to re-visit anything we want to ride again. We also stay on resort so we come and go as we please all day long.
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Sunday, July 29, 2007 9:00 PM
I'd love to stay on resort but my friends parents have a house about an hr from Orlando so staying at the resort would be unheard of.
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Sunday, July 29, 2007 9:37 PM
Heh, I would take a free room anytime. Have fun.
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