Universal Orlando Resort (USO, IOA) Discussion Thread

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Re: Universal Orlando Resort (USO, IOA) Discussion Thread

Postby PhilipB » Sun Feb 17, 2013 8:01 pm

Hey, Guys,

I've been a Member of TPR for a while now, but I usually just watch the conversations, never posting anything. But now, I have a question.

A buddy and I are thinking of going to USO/IOA for Spring Break during the first week in March. We'll leave Nashville TN on Tuesday, the 5th of March and stay till the following Saturday, March 9th. We're going to get the 2 + 1 ticket deal, and are planning on doing IOA on day 1, USO day 2, and finish up at IOA on day 3.

Now, here's the question. We're contemplating paying a little extra for a Vacation Package through USO which will give up an extra hour in the park, City Walk Passes, and transportation. However, after looking over the budget, if we book a cheap hotel on Hotels.com, we can save some money. So, are the passes/early admission worth it? Should we buy the package or split things up, get a hotel on Hotels.com and tickets at the park?

Also, can you guys give us some tips on what to do whilst we're there? We're both 21 now (first SB that we can drink), and neither of us have been to USO/IOA since we were very young, so I'm sure things have changed.

Much appreciated, guys!

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Re: Universal Orlando Resort (USO, IOA) Discussion Thread

Postby OCJ48 » Tue Feb 19, 2013 3:44 pm

^How much is the price difference?

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Re: Universal Orlando Resort (USO, IOA) Discussion Thread

Postby SharkTums » Tue Feb 19, 2013 3:48 pm

^^The city walk discounts and transportation is pretty much negligible. If you save enough money by going to a nearby hotel then you can just buy express passes if you need it!
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Re: Universal Orlando Resort (USO, IOA) Discussion Thread

Postby PhilipB » Tue Feb 19, 2013 9:33 pm

But what are the City Walk Passes? Will they cover the cover to all of the clubs at City Walk?

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Re: Universal Orlando Resort (USO, IOA) Discussion Thread

Postby Mrlittle » Tue Feb 19, 2013 10:07 pm

PhilipB wrote:But what are the City Walk Passes? Will they cover the cover to all of the clubs at City Walk?

Enjoy unlimited one-night club-to-club access and incredible music and entertainment at Universal CityWalk = CityWalk Party Passes

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Re: Universal Orlando Resort (USO, IOA) Discussion Thread

Postby robbalvey » Wed Feb 20, 2013 9:44 pm

So today I went and did a lap of both parks, since there's quite a bit of construction and stuff going on. This is what I saw...
First off, on my drive into the park (This is the Turkey Lake side), you can see that Cabana Bay Beach Resort hotel is coming along nicely!
Yup, hello. I'm here. Let's see what's going on around the resort...
First off, it's PACKED today! WTF?!?! It's February! I thought this was supposed to be the off-season in Orlando? Oh well...
The adventure begins.... with a LOT of other people!
They are still offering two different virtual queue options. Not sure if this is confusing to guests or not...
But we recommend this one!
If the rumors about a new Jurassic Park expansion are true, this view could look much different at some point soon!
Universal cracking down on loose articles now.
Holy crap! This is a Wednesday in February! And they were running three trains also!
I'm not sure what has happened to Hulk, but I took two rides on it today (Single rider line, thank you!) and it was some of the roughest B&M rides I've ever had! I know this coaster has lots of potential, so I'm hoping I caught it on a bad day.
Awww....Remember when Bill & Ted was in this theater? That was awesome! Hopefully we'll get to see that again someday....
I remember reading somewhere recently people complaining about how bad Toon Lagoon looked, but I gotta be honest, I thought it was looking really nice!
Maybe it was re-painted recently, I dunno, but I thought the area looked very vibrant and "toony" (is that an official term? I guess it is now!)
No ripping or falling today. Ripsaw Falls is going through re-hab. It will make him a better person when it's all over.
Construction walls and things...
Not much to see here. Random work being done... I should start another rumor that they are re-profiling the drop...but I won't! lol
This is a fairly decent quick-serve which I normally don't see open. Guess it's busy enough today!
Who can say they have this credit?
I'm told that Triceratops Encounter is really down for the count and everything in this area has been removed. Not sure how true that is, but if it is true, maybe those expansion rumors aren't far off?
Walk way to Triceratops Encounter all closed up, and has been for some time.
Remember having to go through those gates to get to the attraction?
Still the best thing to happen to Universal!
All the Peach Fanta I can drink all day for $10! DEAL!!!!
We'll take a quick look in here. If those expansion rumors come true, this building could look a little different.
Still think the Discovery Center is one of the more underrated areas of the park.
It's like Innoventions...but all Dinos!
Yes, they have real baby dinos that you can see!
Still the best game show in a theme park! lol
That's the bridge they built when Potterverse was under construction. Do they ever use that anymore?
And speaking of Potterverse...that's the line for Butterbeer!
What the hell!!?!? It's a WEDNESDAY!!! In FEBRUARY!!!! So much for the "recession!" lol
Ooooh! Construction!!!
Looks like they've knocked down a couple small buildings to make way for what will eventually be the express train taking you to the "other" Potter land.
Behind the wall is a giant mound of DIRT! Hooray!
Here's another look at what is going on behind the walls.
Looks like Sinbad and the annoying fountain are staying! =)
1999 - 2005. =)
Here's the current menu. Don't recognize most of the items on it. Haven't been here in a while now...
Anyone remember when this used to be an AOL kiosk? lol
Here's how Mythos looks today...
I sometimes forget these dudes are still here!
Seuss Landing was also looking very good!
New paint job maybe?
LOL! Probably still one of my favourite store names!
I noticed that most of all the "little" things in Seuss Landing seemed to be working. That's great!
Overall, I thought IOA looked really good. They seem to be a doing a great job keeping it up.
Just outside of the ticket booths, this was under construction. Not sure what this is going to be. Probably more ticket kiosks.
Time to take a lap of the Studios....
Yup, it's busy here too!
With the recent closure of T2 in California, do we think it's days are numbered here in Orlando also?
I spy something with my little eye...
It's hard to believe that just a couple of months ago, this building didn't exist, and BAM! Now it's here and only a few months before Transformers opens!
Some work being done on the exterior of the building still.
I'm assuming this is going to be the entrance to the ride?
This may very well be the fastest "big ride" to ever go up at a theme park anywhere!
I think it will be something like 9 months from when they broke ground to opening!
And there's Transformers...building is pretty much done!
Across the way there is even MORE construction going on! Let's go check that out...
This view looks pretty different now.
Seriously, Coke Freestyle machines all over the park is AWESOME!!!!
So this will eventually be the new Potter land...
As you can see, they still have a LOT of work left to go!
The big building will house a new roller coaster...
And I'm sure there will be lots of Potter wands and things to buy...
I'm still secretly hoping that Jaws gets his revenge somehow! =)
One final look at Amity...I mean.... new Potter area....
Still one of the best (if not THE best) shooting dark rides ever made!
On the other side of the lagoon there is even MORE construction going on!
The Simpsons area is getting a small expansion of it's own!
You'll see some new shops that you may recognize from Springfield.
Not exactly sure what these new buildings will be...
Maybe Moe's Tavern or Krusty Burger? One can hope!
I've just heard that it will be locations you'll recognize from the show!
All the Spongebob stuff you could possibly want...
Still can't believe how fast this building went up! Insane!!!
Ok, so I just gotta ask the question, because I REALLY like the Hollywood Drive-In Mini Golf....
Is it doing well? Because every time I pass by it, I don't ever see anyone playing it! I think there was one group on the course that I saw today. Please go and play this mini-golf because it is REALLY good!
That wraps up a sort of current state of things at Universal Orlando! Thanks for reading!!! POST YOUR COMMENTS!!!!
Last edited by robbalvey on Wed Feb 20, 2013 9:53 pm.

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Re: Universal Orlando Resort (USO, IOA) Discussion Thread

Postby Chroniq » Wed Feb 20, 2013 9:53 pm

Awesome report as always Robb.. Just a thought regarding lines.. This is the big vacation week for the North East and New England area.. Seems like everyone I know that has a government job is off this week locally. That might account for the lines.

Another thought- I might be easily impressed, but they've done a great job with theming the cube that is the new transformers ride.. Cool to see they did something other than just theme it to a "sound stage"..
Last edited by Chroniq on Wed Feb 20, 2013 10:00 pm.
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Re: Universal Orlando Resort (USO, IOA) Discussion Thread

Postby AndrewRnR » Wed Feb 20, 2013 9:59 pm

This is one of the biggest weeks in Central Florida due to school winter breaks, the races at Daytona, and the holiday. I know the hotels I support in the area are completely full through the weekend.

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Re: Universal Orlando Resort (USO, IOA) Discussion Thread

Postby JRHcoasterki » Wed Feb 20, 2013 10:01 pm

WOW! You weren't kidding when you said the Transformers building went up really fast! I was at the parks in September and definitely don't remember seeing that huge building! Anyway, great report! Didn't realize they had so much construction going on! :)

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Re: Universal Orlando Resort (USO, IOA) Discussion Thread

Postby robbalvey » Wed Feb 20, 2013 10:03 pm

^^ It hasn't been just this week. We've been to parks pretty much every week since Christmas and there really hasn't been a "slow" time. I wasn't actually "questioning" why the parks are crowded, I was just more saying "What the hell!??!" As you remember January and February, even during holiday times, would be "THE TIME TO GO!", but now, it seems like the Orlando parks are just busy all the time.

I mean, I'm not complaining, this is GREAT for the area! More people means more new rides!


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