1 Day Two Park Plan

Pete L

Newcomer
May 10, 2017
4
Hi there!

Me and my fiancé are planning a trip to Orlando in the second week of October. We'll be spending most of our time at Disney World but really want to get one day in at Universal. I know one day isn't an ideal amount of time to explore both parks and we don't expect to do everything. We've made a list of our 'must do' attractions though, we'd be happy with our day if we managed this list. Do you think we'll be able to accomplish this in one day?
Skull Island: Reign of Kong
Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey
Dragon Challenge
Incredible Hulk Coaster
Jurassic Park river adventure
Hogwarts express
Simpsons Land for Lunch/Moes Tavern
The Simpsons Ride
Revenge of the Mummy
Escape from Gringotts
Diagon Alley

Many Thanks!
 

gbird

Rookie
Jul 21, 2015
181
United Kingdom (Birmingham)
Is very possible but make sure get in enterance line at least 30 mins before and then perfectably do-able, we tend to fit in all you have mentioned in one day and tend to start in Universal studios. You will be able to jump on Mummy without a queue and Simpsons ride but Diagon Alley tends to have early enterence for people stopping at Universal Hotels so can be busy early on so we tend to return later in the day to do Gringotts and relax (with a butterbeer or Ice cream)
 
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Jonea32

Rookie
Feb 27, 2017
144
Welcome!

I'd say it's ambitious but not impossible given when you're going but you won't get much time to take things in which I'd say is one of the best parts. That said I'll try to help where I can.

1) Get there for park opening (goes without saying when you're planning 2 parks in 1 day)
2) Unless you are planning on attending Halloween Horror Nights then you'll want to go to Universal on a Monday/Tuesday to avoid the park closing too early for you as the park shuts at 5pm when the event is on. (Although if this is you and your partners thing it will give you extra time to do the Uni rides but be aware that it's a separately ticketed event)
3) There are rumors circulating that Dragon Challenge may no longer be with us by October so this might take out a couple of rides (however at that time of year they are pretty much a walk on anyway)
4) You absolutely MUST do Spiderman, I cannot stress that highly enough! :)
5) Sounds like you have your priorities in check but most of all just have fun and see where the day takes you.
6) If you have time ride the Hogwarts Express in each direction as it's a different story each way.
 
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gbird

Rookie
Jul 21, 2015
181
United Kingdom (Birmingham)
If you and your fiancé are Harry Potter fans try and save as much time possible for Diagon Alley/Hogsmeade as amazing experience. Not to set your expectations too high but blew us away the first time.
 

Mr. EPCOT

Veteran Member
Nov 8, 2011
1,659
Celebration, FL
I would recommend staying at one of the Universal resorts for a night or two so that you get early admission, in particular at Portofino Bay, Hard Rock Hotel, or Royal Pacific so that you get shorter lines on the rides with the complimentary Express.
 

Pete L

Newcomer
May 10, 2017
4
My fiancé is the BIGGEST harry potter fan :D I'm ready to drop some thrill rides if we need to spend more time soaking up the ambience.

That's sad to hear about Dragon Challenge! I'd been hoping to ride Dueling Dragons/Dragon Challenge for years :( but I guess it will free up more time :) (maybe for Spiderman)

In regards to Horror nights, it's definitely our thing (we are having a Goth wedding), we're travelling in October to try and get the most halloween-y experience we can. We wouldn't mind the extra fee for the experience but I've heard that the park gets super busy on those days, are the extra hours worth the extra number of guests? We have a similar thing in the UK at some our our theme parks and whilst the atmosphere is great the extra crowds make it a terrible time to visit the park.

We looked at staying at one of the Universal resorts for a night as an option but it just doesn't fit into our budget or travel plans sadly :/ If one of us gets a promotion in the next few months it will be option number 1 though!

Thanks for all the tips guys!
 

Jonea32

Rookie
Feb 27, 2017
144
Tbh with the Dragon Challenge stuff nothing is official yet and plans change all the time so it may still be open come October. I'm travelling from the UK in the last week of September and I have my fingers crossed.

In regards to HHN I absolutely recommend it, the park will be busier in the evening yeh but most people there will be going to the 9 houses that are only open for the event. Also worth bearing in mind that there are peak days for HHN (Fridays & Saturdays) so if you were to go an avoided those days you would probably get a handful of houses done and could also experience some of the rides that you hadn't knocked off your list yet. (Also, seeing Diagon Alley at night is really special).

Might be an idea to think about having a quiet day at one of the water parks during the day and then travelling to Uni for the evening so you're day doesn't feel quite so long.
 

Mr. EPCOT

Veteran Member
Nov 8, 2011
1,659
Celebration, FL
In regards to Horror nights, it's definitely our thing (we are having a Goth wedding), we're travelling in October to try and get the most halloween-y experience we can. We wouldn't mind the extra fee for the experience but I've heard that the park gets super busy on those days, are the extra hours worth the extra number of guests? We have a similar thing in the UK at some our our theme parks and whilst the atmosphere is great the extra crowds make it a terrible time to visit the park.
Depends on when in October you're going. Earlier in October is better, it might be a little busy but not nuts. If you are into Halloween at all, this is an absolute must-see, this is the most popular Halloween haunt event in the world. It's much much more than just the extra hours in the park, it's like Universal Studios becomes a totally different park for the event. They create very detailed haunted houses based on a mix of famous horror properties and original ideas that they come up with, and the whole park is has a completely different atmosphere filled with themed scarezones and scareactors and all kinds of stuff. It can be difficult seeing every haunted house all in one night, so I would research Express passes to see if they fit into your budget. But even if not, it's still absolutely worth visiting even if you don't see everything. There is a whole sub-forum here dedicated to Halloween Horror Nights. I would suggest to go poke around there to get a better idea of what all is involved. Halloween Horror Nights 27 will be this year's event, and there isn't much announced for that yet, but if you go poking around the page for Halloween Horror Nights 26 from last year, you'll get a great idea of what you can expect for prices, types of haunted houses, strategy, all kinds of stuff.
 

Pete L

Newcomer
May 10, 2017
4
Thanks guys :)
Mr. EPCOT we will be going in early October so that's good to hear. I'll have a look at the 2016 HHN threads and see what my fiancé thinks. It certainly seems like just the kind of thing we'd enjoy.

Got my fingers crossed with you Jonea32
 
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Mr. EPCOT

Veteran Member
Nov 8, 2011
1,659
Celebration, FL
Thanks guys :)
Mr. EPCOT we will be going in early October so that's good to hear. I'll have a look at the 2016 HHN threads and see what my fiancé thinks. It certainly seems like just the kind of thing we'd enjoy.

Got my fingers crossed with you Jonea32
No problem! Echoing what @Jonea32 was saying, if you can go on a Wednesday in early October you will be in real good shape. Feel free to ask anything you want around the boards here, we're all very passionate about all the parks in general, and many of us have quite the passion for HHN, too, and love to help out where we can.
 

ChristopherSE

V.I.P.
Jul 12, 2009
1,994
NJ -> Orlando
Had the same question! My family will be attempting both parks in a day, with basically the same must-do list (but switch out DD for Spider-man ;)).

For a mid-august day (and a family who can hustle through a theme park), is this feasible without an express pass? We're in a similar boat where staying on site for a night might not be in the budget.

@Pete L if you're still around the forums, I'd love to hear how your trip went!
 

Joe

aka TestTrack321
Staff member
Moderator
Feb 15, 2012
11,319
Pittsburgh, PA
Hi there!

Me and my fiancé are planning a trip to Orlando in the second week of October. We'll be spending most of our time at Disney World but really want to get one day in at Universal. I know one day isn't an ideal amount of time to explore both parks and we don't expect to do everything. We've made a list of our 'must do' attractions though, we'd be happy with our day if we managed this list. Do you think we'll be able to accomplish this in one day?
Skull Island: Reign of Kong
Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey
Dragon Challenge
Incredible Hulk Coaster
Jurassic Park river adventure
Hogwarts express
Simpsons Land for Lunch/Moes Tavern
The Simpsons Ride
Revenge of the Mummy
Escape from Gringotts
Diagon Alley

Many Thanks!
Hey Pete.

Make sure to also see Spider-Man, Horror Make Up, and Men in Black. [Edit- Also in Diagon make sure to hit the two stage shows and Olivanders]

If you are doing one day remember to arrive early, hit low capacity attractions first, and stay till close.

I advise for those visiting in one day is to pick up a Touring Plans subscription for UOR. You can create your own touring plan on the attractions you want to visit and then check off each item completed/refresh the plan if you run into an issue. I'm a subscriber out of my own pocket but to be transparent I do freelance write for Touring Plans.
 
Last edited:

GadgetGuru

Premium Member
Dec 2, 2011
2,217
Seattle, WA
Had the same question! My family will be attempting both parks in a day, with basically the same must-do list (but switch out DD for Spider-man ;)).

For a mid-august day (and a family who can hustle through a theme park), is this feasible without an express pass? We're in a similar boat where staying on site for a night might not be in the budget.

@Pete L if you're still around the forums, I'd love to hear how your trip went!
I’m not involved with TouringPlans in any way and I’ll gladly endorse them. They do a great job.

You’re going to have a very busy day, but I think that’s doable. Definitely get to the parks at open or very close.

I’ve never done Horror Make Up (heard great things!) but it is a show. You have a busy day and shows can eat up precious time.

I can’t stress enough how much you’ll want to do Men in Black. I’d recommend ET if the lines is < 15 and Cat in the Hat if the line is < 10. They’re fun rides, but not worth a long wait.
 

ChristopherSE

V.I.P.
Jul 12, 2009
1,994
NJ -> Orlando
I’m not involved with TouringPlans in any way and I’ll gladly endorse them. They do a great job.

You’re going to have a very busy day, but I think that’s doable. Definitely get to the parks at open or very close.

I’ve never done Horror Make Up (heard great things!) but it is a show. You have a busy day and shows can eat up precious time.

I can’t stress enough how much you’ll want to do Men in Black. I’d recommend ET if the lines is < 15 and Cat in the Hat if the line is < 10. They’re fun rides, but not worth a long wait.
Thank you! Just got my 1 year sub to touring plans for WDW and UO. Totally affordable.

My family did IoA a few years ago when WWoHP opened, but haven’t done the studios park since 2001 :lol: So we’ll likely have to skip some things we did last time, but a lot has changed at the studios haha. We’ll definitely be hitting up MIB, as we love shooting rides. And as much as we like a good show, rides definitely rank higher on the list.

We’ll be there from open to close, for sure, and we enjoy the parks best with running shoes and a guerilla mentality :lol:

Really appreciating all the great tips, thank you!
 
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Skubersky

Member
May 30, 2013
820
Orlando, FL
Thank you! Just got my 1 year sub to touring plans for WDW and UO. Totally affordable.

My family did IoA a few years ago when WWoHP opened, but haven’t done the studios park since 2001 :lol: So we’ll likely have to skip some things we did last time, but a lot has changed at the studios haha. We’ll definitely be hitting up MIB, as we love shooting rides. And as much as we like a good show, rides definitely rank higher on the list.

We’ll be there from open to close, for sure, and we enjoy the parks best with running shoes and a guerilla mentality :lol:

Really appreciating all the great tips, thank you!
If you have any Touringplans questions shoot me a direct message