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    • Taylor Strickland

      (IMPORTANT) What's next for our community   03/24/2016

      Today we're excited to announce the start of our new Facebook group: Universal Community by Orlando Informer. We're also announcing we're closing our forums. This is probably the hardest decision I've made so far with Orlando Informer. This week marks the 2nd anniversary of our forums. Monday will mark 2 years from when I first applied to work with Orlando Informer. I was entering a pool of over 50 applicants, didn't meet the requirements, and didn't think the odds were very high that I'd get the position of Forum Moderator. It never even crossed my mind that not only would I get the position, but that position and these forums would be the start of being able to do what I love as a fulltime job. At its core, our forums have always had two goals: A ) Help families receive specific answers to specific questions, feedback from folks who have been in their shoes, and help them maximize their investment into their vacation. B ) Build a community of people who love to visit Universal, with a foundation of respect and tolerance. I can speak for our entire team on our forums (both past and present), especially our Community Manager @Chuck Plagmann, when I say that we have devoted hours of time every day of the year working towards these two goals. We feel that we've made major strides towards both of our goals, but see the opportunity to help a significantly greater amount of people plan their vacation and add on to our established (and amazing) community. Unfortunately, as time goes on, forums like ours have a tendency to slow down and be replaced by social media. It's the cycle of life for forums. We believe that this Facebook group is the logical next step for our community. Our forums and the content within will remain browseable for the foreseeable future, however you will not be able to submit new content. Our Facebook group, Universal Community by Orlando Informer, will be curated by our same team that ran the OI Forums. @Chuck Plagmann and I will be on the group daily to provide insight and help families plan their vacation. @debi will be monitoring for any Special Needs questions. Our (very talented) authors, like @Marc N. Kleinhenz, will be on the group to talk about their latest articles and your feedback. Finally, @Park Beast will even be dropping by from time to time to talk about our weekly podcast. You can access our Facebook group by searching "Universal Community by Orlando Informer" or visiting UOR.community from any webbrowser. We know this is a substantial change from our forums, but are hopeful you'll be willing to give it a shot. Additionally, we're launching a Facebook group for Universal Hollywood: "Universal Community by California Informer" or visit USH.community. This is the end of the forums, but it is just the beginning of our community. One thing we consistently hear from members of our forums is how different our community is from some of the others found online. We are committed to maintaining this reputation in our Facebook group. I have met a countless number of people, many I call friends, from our OI Forums. I know real bonds (and even relationships) have resulted from the time spent on these forums. I'm looking forward to seeing these bonds develop and new ones form on our new outlet. Please know that this decision was not made lightly or without considering the amount of time many of you have spent on here. I fully believe this is the next step forward to growing our community and helping as many people as possible have the best trip to Universal. I'm looking forward to interacting with everyone for many years to come. As always, please don't hesitate to reach out with feedback -- taylor [at] orlandoinformer.com See you on the Facebook Group, Taylor P.S., Unlimited likes on Facebook, you can thank me in advance.
Dan Hatfield

Orlando Informer touring plans for USF & IOA

133 posts in this topic

This is a friendly reminder that Orlando Informer provides free touring plans:

 

Universal Studios & Islands of Adventure 1-day touring plan

 

Ultimate Islands of Adventure 1-day touring plan

 

Ultimate Universal Studios Florida 1-day touring plan

 

Universal 3-day touring plan for on-site guests: Day 1

Universal 3-day touring plan for on-site guests: Day 2

Universal 3-day touring plan for on-site guests: Day 3

 

World Famous OI WWoHP touring plan

 

Design your own Universal Orlando touring plans

 

 

When will the Orlando Informer touring plans be updated for Diagon Alley?

 

We hope to have all our touring plans updated within a month after Diagon Alley officially opens. Remember that, not only will it take a lot of work to update the plans just given the nature of this massive expansion, but we also have to wait some time for crowds to start to move in a predictable way - so we can advise you on how to avoid them!

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These are AMAZINGLY helpful!!! Even for an Orlando resident like myself, I love to print them out and have them ready for out of town family members!!  I am not always able to join them when they come down to visit so these are perfect so they are able to make the most of their short stays!!

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Thanks so much for these.

 

Would your on-site 3 day plan change much for Cabana Bay guests, given that we get early admission but not the express pass? 

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Early park admission, fall 2013 update"

 

just seen this blog - Is this still the situation, Currently on-site guests only have early entry to IOA ? not US ?

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Thanks so much for these.

 

Would your on-site 3 day plan change much for Cabana Bay guests, given that we get early admission but not the express pass? 

 

FamilyNev,

 

The on-site 3 day plan assumes you have access to an express pass. You might still be able to do it on a slow day, however.

 

Early park admission, fall 2013 update"

 

just seen this blog - Is this still the situation, Currently on-site guests only have early entry to IOA ? not US ?

 

Carol_G,

 

For at least until late May, guests only have early entry to IoA. When Diagon Alley opens it's possible this will be expanded to both parks or just USF.

Sybill likes this

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I love these plans! I have a question about the all day lockers. It seems that everyone suggests to pay for a full day locker to store things and an extra pair of clothes for water rides. Here is my big question. How centrally located are these lockers? Are they quick to get to from anywhere in the park? Also, what if I am in WWoHP on a particularly busy day and I need to go put something in my locker so I can get on a ride, but then I can't get back in? I know sometimes they have the return ticket system.

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I love these plans! I have a question about the all day lockers. It seems that everyone suggests to pay for a full day locker to store things and an extra pair of clothes for water rides. Here is my big question. How centrally located are these lockers? Are they quick to get to from anywhere in the park? Also, what if I am in WWoHP on a particularly busy day and I need to go put something in my locker so I can get on a ride, but then I can't get back in? I know sometimes they have the return ticket system.

 

The all-day lockers are at the front of each park. Not very centrally located.

Outside of every ride you're not allowed to bring items on, there are free "while you ride" lockers. So if you need to put something in a locker while you ride FJ you would just use the free lockers outside of FJ.

 

Full locker information page here.

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Love the touring plans! I am going to be using the 3 day plan. I am going to staying off site, but booked a vacation package and have the early admission to WWoHP. Now I have read through all the info. I could, and wanted to ask what all day lockers would be my best bet? My daughter and I will be going back to our hotel during the busy times during the day. We are going end of may, in 11 days. I fully plan to be at the park about 45 minutes early in the morning, then back in the late afternoon.

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Can't wait for the new plans incorporating Diagon Alley. We leave for Florida Aug 6. Won't be long now woohoo!

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I would like to know where must I queue the EPA 15th August, because a park opens at 8 and the other at 9...

Thanks! :)

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I would like to know where must I queue the EPA 15th August, because a park opens at 8 and the other at 9...

Thanks! :)

 

You queue at whichever theme park gate that you want to go to. You could also do both by queueing for the 7 EPA and then leaving after about ~30 minutes to queue for the 8 EPA.

 

Does this make sense? :)

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I love these plans! I have a question about the all day lockers. It seems that everyone suggests to pay for a full day locker to store things and an extra pair of clothes for water rides. Here is my big question. How centrally located are these lockers? Are they quick to get to from anywhere in the park? Also, what if I am in WWoHP on a particularly busy day and I need to go put something in my locker so I can get on a ride, but then I can't get back in? I know sometimes they have the return ticket system.

 

I think of the all day lockers as "base camp" for exploring the parks.  I put everything in the locker, and head out for some expeditions.  I return periodically to resupply as neccessary.  It is nice to walk around the park without carrying anything to slow you down.  The parks are not terribly large, you are almost never more than 10 minutes from the all day lockers (usually less than 5).  Remember, you can have anything you buy held for you - to be picked up later.  I never carry or wear anything would prevent me from going on a ride (requiring a trip to the locker).  I make sure I have a pant/shorts pocket for a hat, lanyard, sunglasses, and iPhone camera - if I need to secure them for a ride.

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I'm very happy to say that the first of our touring plans is now fully up-to-date!

 

Universal Studios & Islands of Adventure 1 day touring plan

 

This one was very time consuming because it has to be completely rewritten from scratch (our old plan started in USF and ended in IOA, this plan starts in IOA and ends in USF).

 

I encourage your feedback, so please check it out and let me know what you think.

 

Our other plans will be updated started first thing next week.

Linda67 and Kathy1 like this

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You queue at whichever theme park gate that you want to go to. You could also do both by queueing for the 7 EPA and then leaving after about ~30 minutes to queue for the 8 EPA.

 

Does this make sense? :)

In this cases (different open time) each park has its own EPA?

If it's like that, I don't know! Maybe it's a good idea doing it that way!

Thanks!

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I'm very happy to say that the first of our touring plans is now fully up-to-date!

 

Universal Studios & Islands of Adventure 1 day touring plan

 

This one was very time consuming because it has to be completely rewritten from scratch (our old plan started in USF and ended in IOA, this plan starts in IOA and ends in USF).

 

I encourage your feedback, so please check it out and let me know what you think.

 

Our other plans will be updated started first thing next week.

 

 

 

This is so useful!

I am really looking forward to reading your other touring plans

We are lucky enough to have muliple days to tour the parks but as we are going to be there in October, we are being hit by 5pm park closures at USF due to HHNs

We can split mornings between IOA and USF though so hoping we will be fine   :)

Taylor Strickland likes this

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In this cases (different open time) each park has its own EPA?

If it's like that, I don't know! Maybe it's a good idea doing it that way!

Thanks!

 

Yes, each park has its own EPA at different times, if nothing changes.

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I'm very happy to say that the first of our touring plans is now fully up-to-date!

 

Universal Studios & Islands of Adventure 1 day touring plan

 

This one was very time consuming because it has to be completely rewritten from scratch (our old plan started in USF and ended in IOA, this plan starts in IOA and ends in USF).

 

I encourage your feedback, so please check it out and let me know what you think.

 

Our other plans will be updated started first thing next week.

 

Nice looking plan.  Just thinking out loud.  With HE being different each direction and from what I've read, the trip to Hogwarts from King Cross Station is the most "iconic" to the books/movies, I wonder if a double hop  might an appropriate. option.

 

Something along the lines of

USF

1 Transformers (or Despicable me)

2 Gringotts

3 Train to IOA

IOA (Follow your plan Hogwarts Around to Seuss Landing counter clockwise)

 

HE back to USF.

 

Follow USF part of plan.  Omitting attractions experienced during first time in the park.

 

The only additional change might be meals.  Adding the couple of rides may make 3 broom sticks the better lunch option then Simpsons or Leaky Cauldron for Dinner. 

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Nice looking plan.  Just thinking out loud.  With HE being different each direction and from what I've read, the trip to Hogwarts from King Cross Station is the most "iconic" to the books/movies, I wonder if a double hop  might an appropriate. option.

 

All in all, it's always up to your personal priorities when deciding how to tour the parks. The plan we offer is what we feel showcases the best and most diverse group of attractions at Universal with the least amount of potential waiting, and, of course, with the understanding that much of the year you won't be able to see and do everything at both parks in one day.

 

For these reasons, we've chosen to start the day at IOA and Hogmeade and end the day at USF and Diagon Alley. For example, going to Gringotts after Transformers sounds like a fun lineup, but chances are the wait for Gringotts will be nearly three hours by the time you get there - at least going off the current wait times. That's nearly a quarter of the day waiting for one attraction, which isn't great for a "both parks in one day" touring plan.

 

But again, it's always up to you. That's why we provide our Design your own touring plan page, if you'd like to go with something different.

 

Regarding meals, it's the same idea - we didn't want to have lunch and dinner at Wizarding World restaurants. Having lunch at Fast Food Blvd and dinner at Leaky Cauldron will give you the chance to experience Universal's best quick-service dining and also get some variety in theming :)

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All in all, it's always up to your personal priorities when deciding how to tour the parks. The plan we offer is what we feel showcases the best and most diverse group of attractions at Universal with the least amount of potential waiting, and, of course, with the understanding that much of the year you won't be able to see and do everything at both parks in one day.

 

For these reasons, we've chosen to start the day at IOA and Hogmeade and end the day at USF and Diagon Alley. For example, going to Gringotts after Transformers sounds like a fun lineup, but chances are the wait for Gringotts will be nearly three hours by the time you get there - at least going off the current wait times. That's nearly a quarter of the day waiting for one attraction, which isn't great for a "both parks in one day" touring plan.

 

But again, it's always up to you. That's why we provide our Design your own touring plan page, if you'd like to go with something different.

 

Regarding meals, it's the same idea - we didn't want to have lunch and dinner at Wizarding World restaurants. Having lunch at Fast Food Blvd and dinner at Leaky Cauldron will give you the chance to experience Universal's best quick-service dining and also get some variety in theming :)

 

I would tend to agree with what you're saying.  At this point, a 1 day touring plan is going to require a lot of give and take, and as the crowds increase it's going to get tougher and tougher to do.  Seeing both sides of the HE may be one thing you'll need to give up. 

 

I'll be curious to see your other new touring plans that they come out.    I'm planning on going to several days but I'm planning on staying at Cabana Bay so no Express Pass but Single Rider line is going to be an option. 

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Hi!

Anyone knows if we can have lunch or use the swimming pools of the hotels inside the park if we don't stay there? We stay in a partner hotel and we are a couple without kids.

We would like take some rest in the middle of the day :)

Thanks!

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Hi!

Anyone knows if we can have lunch or use the swimming pools of the hotels inside the park if we don't stay there? We stay in a partner hotel and we are a couple without kids.

We would like take some rest in the middle of the day :)

Thanks!

 

While you're not allowed to use the pools, you are allowed to have lunch anywhere.

LunaWeasley likes this

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Hello,

 

can you help us on updated  3 day touring plan for onsite guest?

We will be in the park  Aug 20 - Aug 22 with 2 teenagers

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Hello,

 

can you help us on updated  3 day touring plan for onsite guest?

We will be in the park  Aug 20 - Aug 22 with 2 teenagers

 

Hi UMMA and welcome to OI,

 

I have modified your topic title and will be moving your topic to a more appropriate section. Thank you for your understanding.

 

Regarding a 3-day touring plan, I believe the plan is to have an updated plan published this week. Please check back later this week once we have published the new plan and let us know if you have any questions.

 

Hope this helps.

Chuck Plagmann likes this

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