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Ripped Off
Posted by Schn70 on 05/29/2012
ORLANDO, LOUISIANA -- I purchased a vacation package and went to the theme parks in early March of 2012. I also purchased five tickets for breakfast at The Three Broomsticks Restaurant. On the scheduled day of the breakfast, there was literally a torrential downpour going on. It made no sense to go into the theme parks just for the breakfast and waste an entire theme park pass, when it was scheduled to rain the whole day. I called the vacation packages line early and informed them that we would not be attending due to the weather, and also asked if I could reschedule for the next morning. They informed me that there was no availability for the next two days. I then asked if we could use the voucher towards dinner at that same restaurant and was told that they could neither do that nor could they give me vouchers to eat at any other restaurant or spend in the theme park. I was told to go to the guest services window in the park, turn in the vouchers and wait six entire weeks for a refund.

I did this and on 4/23/2012 I called back to inquire about my refund which I still had not received. Of course, I was told to hold forever while they researched this. The agent, Celeste, that I spoke with then came back on the line and stated "sorry", for some reason they had not even started processing the refund. But, she did see that the vouchers for five breakfasts was turned in to guest services. She then stated that she was submitting it for processing and it should take a few more weeks. She also offered me five All Day Dining Meals for the inconvenience.

I called on 5/28 to see about the refund that I still have yet to receive and also about redeeming the All Day Dining meals. I was then told that there was no record of my visit, at which time I supplied them with my original reservation number and offered to email the original reservation. I also gave a comment number that I was told by Celeste to use on future inquiries. At that point, I was basically told that they had no idea what happened to my refund and to contact the revenue dept.. As for those promised meal deals, well they must have just been a figment of my imagination. They also had no record of that. I asked to speak directly with Celeste and was first told she was on another call and then that she was off altogether.

I asked for a manager and spoke with someone named Jimmy, who claimed to be a manager but was by far the rudest person I have ever spoken with in a customer service dept.. He basically yelled at me and implied that I was a liar because Celeste would never promise those things. When I asked who I might speak with to file a formal complaint he told me that he was it, there was no one above him and that even if I submitted a complaint online it would be forwarded to him. Which is why I am now taking every available forum to vent my frustration, including the consumer affairs website.

This vacation package was a nightmare from the beginning. What should have been a relaxing vacation for my son who just returned from bootcamp, turned out to be miserable. From the bed at the Portofino Bay hotel that was made up beautifully, but when my daughter got in it the first night of our arrival turned out to be very wet with some unknown fluid, to the horrible treatment I encountered for over a simple refund. I spent over 3,000 dollars with Universal and I can"t believe that a company would allow its employees to treat a customer so badly over a situation like this. At this point, it is no longer about the money, but about principle. I feel like I was beeing riped off from the start which is why the refund could not be processed while I was actually at the resort.

It now seems like a concerted effort in hopes that customers will just go home and forget about the fact that they just lost some money through no fault of their own. Therefore, I am now telling all of my friends, family coworkers and the Facebook community about my awful experience and that they should steer clear of a Universal Vacation Package unless thay want to be ripped off.

     
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Posted by trp2hevn on 2012-05-30:
I wonder if somewhere on the voucher it says something like non-refundable or something like that. Did the park cancel the breakfast or did you just decide not to go because it was raining?
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Special Needs Children
Posted by Tammio74 on 12/30/2011
ORLANDO, FLORIDA -- I am trying to let every one know who has a special needs child to universal. We were in islands of adventure at the seuss landing sitting on the caro-seuss-ol. My little guy was belted in on the ride with my husband standing right next to him and the people who work there were talking to us as they filled the ride. We sat there for five minutes and when they got ready to start the ride they told us he could not ride. They had changed the rules to ride and scents he had put his head down before the ride started he could not ride. I could not believe they would treat a child like that. We were so mad and up set. People all around us were mad and told them that they were wrong but it did not matter. We talk to a supervisor and they said the same thing. We paid all that money and could not do any thing. They said he could go in to see the shows. I told them that would be hard scents he can not see. We had been to the other parks and had no trouble at all. He rode any ride he wanted to over there. They should put up a sign that says people with disabilities not wanted here. I want no family to fell like we felt that day.
     
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Posted by At Your Service on 2011-12-30:
At the risk of being deleted, I've got to agree with Goldopals.
Posted by trmn8r on 2011-12-31:
I am wondering if a passenger on this ride has to have a certain level of awareness and/or be able to remain upright as a safety requirement to ride. That is all I can think of based on the description.

The OP did not state whether they were given an explanation beyond "can't ride", so it isn't possible to know what the issue is beyond the child is blind and his head was not upright as the ride was about to begin.
Posted by At Your Service on 2011-12-31:
Maybe trmn8r.

For the record, why is asking about the statement, "scents he had put his head down before the ride started he could not ride" considered seeking to diminish? I really did have the same question. It sounds like it isn't very clear to trmn8r either.

The O.P. may have a very valid point, but the complaint isn't very clear. On the other hand, there may have been a very valid reason why they wouldn't allow the child to ride. That may seem mean spirited at first, but I'm aware of a very small child who was killed at a local amusement park when he fell off a small children's ride. I'd much rather see a parent offended then grieving over the loss of a child.

IMHO, this is where communication between the site monitors and the users would be greatly appreciated. In addition, just as one would hopefully be respectful when posting comments, moderators should be equally respectful about removing or editing said comments.
Posted by Anonymous on 2011-12-31:
AYS, this is one that you and I agree on. When someones life could hang in the balance, it's better to err on the side of caution.
Posted by Venice09 on 2011-12-31:
It sounds like he was riding alone with no one to help him stay in an upright position. That could be why he wasn't allowed. I know it feels unfair and insensitive. It's never easy when parents can't make things right. But it's also good to know that Universal takes safety seriously. I hope you found something else for your son to enjoy, and that he had a great time!
Posted by tammio74 on 2011-12-31:
My boy was very safe on the ride as my husband was beside him holding on to him. It was a merry go round. He puts his head down to figure out what is going on and then it goes back up. The point I am trying to make is if they are going to change the rules the guidelines should be posted of what people should be able to do. Not wait till you have paid money and put a child on a ride for 5 minutes and then decide they can not ride.
Posted by trmn8r on 2011-12-31:
What rule did they change, and what was the rule that said he could not ride?
Posted by tammio74 on 2012-01-03:
The rule that changed they said was putting his head down even when he put it back up. My point is when they change rules it should be posted at the park when you go in not after you have been on a ride for 5 minutes. It is very upsetting for the person, they do not understand why can not ride the ride.
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Charging Twice The Parking Fee -> Hard To Give Refund!
Posted by Lago791 on 03/21/2011
ORLANDO, FLORIDA -- I went to the park today with my Kids. I had lost the park Tickets before, and therefore, I had to pay $15 for the parking at the entrance. Then, they gave me a new copy of the tickets at the park, but they gave me a hard time at the customer service window to refund the $15 from the parking.

When I bought the annual passes, I have spent $60 extra in my ticket so that I did not have to pay for the parking during the year. Their point was that because I had no ticket at the entrance, the parking fee could not be refunded.

It is hard to believe that knowing that I have paid twice for the parking, they have tried so hard to not give me a refund.

     
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Posted by Anonymous on 2011-03-22:
If you lose a twenty dollar bill the bank don't give you a twenty dollar bill back. There is no way to prove you just didn't give it or sell it to someone and then claim you lost it. At some point one has to take personal responsibilility for their mistakes.
Posted by treym on 2011-03-22:
they are crooks in the worst way. I live in Florida and can honestly say that if it wasn't for children, Floridians would not go to this park.
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A Great DISAPPOINTMENT
Posted by Starsearch4 on 03/01/2011
ORLANDO, FLORIDA -- The last time I went to Universal (Orlando) was 15 years ago with my young daughters. We stayed 2-3 days and had a great time. I wanted to share any part of that pleasure (this past February) with my good friend who had never visited any Florida Theme Park.

To my shock, the “bargain price” for a SINGLE day was $84...but I rationalized it could be worth it for a FULL day of fun…even if we were 57 & 64 years old and didn‘t enjoy roller coasters or other fast rides.

The disappointment continued as I found out my 2-3 favorite rides were now in the “new” Island Of Adventure section and all my other favorites, including the Animal Show, were still in Universal Park…and I had to decide which to choose as the “1-Day Hopper” ticket price was even more outrageous.

Because of the one positive thing, short lines, we were able to cover most of the fun stuff in a couple of hours...so were quickly looking for ways to waste time and justify being there for the full $84 day...and trying to find any additional value. This already-diminished value was further lessened when I discovered they even closed my favorite water ride (FOR ANNUAL MAINTENANCE!!!!!)...so my expenditure became even more of a loss.

I know you will survive without my attendance or recommendation and will also not offer any compensation so…enjoy your stringent policies and business decisions. I have been permanently “soured” away from Orlando.

     
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Posted by Anonymous on 2011-03-01:
As a frequent visitor to such destinations as Universal Studios Hollywood, Six Flags Magic Mountain, etc...I ALWAYS call ahead or check on-line for closures, prices, and such. All in all, it sounds as though it was the OP that did a pretty poor job of planning their trip.
Posted by cholden on 2011-03-01:
This is the first time that I've heard or read someone complain that short lines at an amusement park caused them to have a bad time.

Plus, OP purchased tickets without finding out what they entitled them to.
Posted by Anonymous on 2011-03-01:
If you consider the cost to an NFL football game, a NBA basketball game, a Broadway show, a concert, a round of golf, a day sling, etc., etc., the price is not outrageous. There is enough information out there if you do your research beforehand, you can find the right time to go, and what to do.
Posted by Anonymous on 2011-03-02:
I can never plan amusement park visits around 1 day. The last time I went to Universal, I also paid to get into Islands of Adventure (great park, btw). It's been awhile, though, and when I read this review, I thought "$84! Holy cow!".
Posted by trmn8r on 2011-03-02:
I *usually* plan amusement park visits for 1 day. Half a day - lower cost ticket, shorter amount of time to be with the masses, less chance of running into Charlie Sheen.
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Too Many People - Too Many Lines
Posted by D_Bondman on 12/28/2010
ORLANDO, FLORIDA -- We went to Universal 12/27/2010 to see the new Harry Potter Exhibit. The best thing about our day was the guest services representative cheerfully refunded our ticket because the lines were so long we could not see the exhibit. You have to go near the Harry Potter entrance to get timed return tickets. Our tickets were for 5 hours later. The lines at the other rides were 90 minutes. Spiderman was 150 minutes. The line into Harry Potter actually became dangerous with people pushing past mothers with baby strollers and bumping people in wheelchairs. The park staff was extremely poorly trained. They had no idea how to control the line and the crowd.

Inside Harry Potter the crowd was uncomfortable always bumping into me. We waited 30 minutes just to get into a store to look at souvenirs The Gryffendor Scarves were sold out after a week of temps in the 40's. The lines into Hogwarts and the rides were 90 minutes. Even the wand shop had a 30 minute line.

A woman next to me getting her refund said she had 7:50 timed tickets and was not allowed into Harry Potter. The staff shut down admission because the area was filled to capacity.

What Universal can do:
1. Stop letting so many people in. When you sell a product that you cannot deliver because of overcrowding, that is fraud.
2. Let people sign up for timed return tickets at the park entrance, and, make sure people know timed tickets are required.
3. Stop people at least 50 yards from the entrance until the time of timed tickets. The crush in the crowd was because people with later tickets were blocking the entrance,
4. Clearly mark exits to stores as exit only
5. Invest in crowd control technology and staff training.
6. Require staff training and park knowledge. I asked several staffers for directions, they did not even know where guest services is.

What you can do: Stay at Universal hotel and start at the park at 7:00AM, Pay $80 for the express pass and skip line rides, don't go to Universal Christmas week (they way overfill the park), go to guest services and demand a refund when you have a terrible day.

     
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Posted by werelucky on 2010-12-28:
Christmas time is a bad time to visit Orlando. Big crowds at all the big parks. Disney in California stopped letting people in today. I guess everyone decided to visit theme parks this holiday.
Posted by olie on 2010-12-28:
Your best bit of advice was this: "Don't go to Universal Christmas week".
Posted by Venice09 on 2010-12-29:
I agree, olie. Christmas week and spring break are probably the two worst times to go. We've been down there twice, both times in February, and although it was a bit chilly, the lines were definitely doable.
Posted by Anonymous on 2010-12-29:
WOW. Ill know never to go to Disney the week of Christmas!!!!! Doesnt sound like it would be any fun at all.
Posted by momsey on 2010-12-29:
Yeah, this doesn't sound fun at all! Waiting on line to get into a gift shop? No thanks.

I went to Disney with my brother's family the first week of December a few years ago. It was great. The problem is, once your kids are in school, either you go when everyone else will be there or you take your kids out of school to go to Disney.
Posted by Anonymous on 2010-12-29:
I don't understand why people go to gift shops at amusement parks.
Posted by Anonymous on 2010-12-29:
I do. Some people like to purchase souvenirs and mementos from places they've been, or find they need more film, sunscreen, etc.
Posted by MRM on 2010-12-29:
Exactly Ript. Its like getting rocks while you are on the moon.
Posted by LizzieT on 2010-12-29:
The BEST week to go is the LAST week in August! All the kids are in school down there and every park is pretty empty! We went to Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure this summer and did each park twice! The only thing we had to wait for was The 8th Voyage of Sinbad stunt show. No lines for Harry Potter, Spiderman, the Mummy, etc!
Posted by randola on 2010-12-29:
we just got back from orlando and yes the lines were long but we made the best of. if you go there during christmas week you should be aware that everyone else is going to be there too! we did our homework so we weren't surprised and just chatted with others in line and entertained ourselves. the parks open at 8am at both disney and universal so thats when we arrived. our only complaint was the weather....30 degrees in florida was insane but it was better than the foot of snow we got at home.
Posted by momsey on 2010-12-29:
Yeah, except Florida + August = misery.

After our vacation last August to Myrtle Beach and Savannah, we've decided never to go south for a summer vacation again.
Posted by Venice09 on 2010-12-29:
Momsey, same here. I would never venture anywhere south of here in August, and certainly not Florida!
Posted by trmn8r on 2010-12-29:
My friends took their honeymoon in New Orleans in August. I'm happy the wedding wasn't there.
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Misleading season ticket benefit
Posted by Scolclass on 05/26/2010
ORLANDO, FLORIDA -- Just a note of warning! Don’t forget to read the fine print on the Universal page that tells you prices of season tickets and benefits. (it doesn’t tell you on the page where you actually buy tickets}. On the main page it says free parking is included in season pass price. There is an asterisk that says except the first day. The way to get around this is to go to drop off area and drop off someone who has bought the season pass on line and let them pick up their pass. Then you can go back around and you can park for free.
     
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Posted by Weedwhacked on 2010-05-26:
So you actually need to show the season pass to get through for free parking on the first day?! That is pretty sneaky on their part.
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Rip Ride Rock-it Roller coaster
Posted by Ksal622 on 02/26/2010
FLORIDA -- At the end of most rides, you can purchase a photo of you on that specific ride. Well, the new roller coaster at Universal is no exception. The ride itself was AMAZING. However, there is a new feature of buying a video of your ride. This is the complaint: the video you view before you purchase it is not the actual video that they make for you. The video you have has small clips of you on the ride and most of the video has these ridiculous effects of the roller coaster. Not worth the $35!
     
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Posted by Skye on 2010-02-27:
Did you tell them how you feel? Sounds like it might be fun thing to have, with special effects, but to each his own.

Glad you enjoyed the roller coaster, which have have always beenone of my favorites.
Posted by PepperElf on 2010-02-27:
normally i don't agree with most false advertising complaints but...

well you didn't call it such... but i will.

indeed they should actually specify that the video will be of your own ride. it sounds like the advert is made to look like it's one of those "feel like you're in a coaster" vids instead, if i'm reading your complaint correctly
Posted by localgod on 2010-02-27:
VH!
Posted by Anonymous on 2010-02-27:
Good to know. Thanks!
Posted by Ksal622 on 2010-03-01:
Universal handled the whole thing spectacularly! Super friendly and professional. I am in the process of getting my refund.
Posted by PepperElf on 2010-03-01:
o nice. congrats!

=)
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Universal Island of Adventure incredible sadism!
Posted by Antoniom on 12/07/2009
ORLANDO, FLORIDA -- I wonder what bright head at Orlando Universal Island of Adventure may think that people like and enjoy to get soaked wet during a cold and damp November morning, he/she must be a descendant of Marquis DeSade or other notorious villain!

In the morning of Thanksgiving 2009, my wife and I decided to visit the Universal Studios and Island of Adventure. The first ride we chose was "Jurassic Park: A River Adventure". It consists of a ride on a strange round vessel following a watery course. What was not written anywhere nor explained by any of the attendant was that once on there is no way to escape getting soaking wet from the numerous inescapable water downpours, plus lots of water entering the vessel as it goes though the course. The only thing that these dudes did was to make sure that we were well strapped to the seats by safety belts. Well, as you move down the course there are several, at least ten, water downpours on the vessel and its occupants. Furthermore, in another couple of occasion water pours into the vessel. The tight safety belt made sure that we could not escape any of these treaths! As a result, at the end of the ride we were both soaked wet, no item of our clothing escaped getting wet, including intimates, and had no other choice than driving to the Hotel to change all of our clothing. A perfectly good Thanksgiving ruined! Not only, since then, my wife has developed a nasty cough and also a low grade fever that has not cleared 10 days after the occurrence.

I can't believe that reasonable person would think this is the kind of fun one wants to get after paying the outrageously expensive entrance fee! How can it be fun to soak people in the middle of Fall? How come that nobody warned us? We were new to the attraction and do not know what to expect! How is it that you cannot escape the downpouring water (pours everywhere)? How is it that, having been asked to strap in your seats, you cannot escape having your bottom soaked by the water entering in the vessel?

I can understand that this may be acceptable to some in a bathing suit during a hot Summer day, but how could any reasonable person think that fully dressed people enjoy to get soaked on a cold and damp Fall day? Getting people wet during cold days was/is a form of torture and punishment in the not so old days!

At this point I'll have my wife go to her doctor to get a cure and ascertain if her condition can be related to the soaking we received at Universal Island of Adventure, after which a visit to my lawyer to consider legal action against Universal will follow!

     
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Posted by Anonymous on 2009-12-07:
Cold/wet weather cannot make a person sick. Sickness is caused by viruses, not cold weather. Good luck trying to sue. You voluntarily got on the ride
Posted by goduke on 2009-12-07:
So you expect that if you go on a water rider that has an 85' drop on it, that you aren't going to get wet. Really?
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-12-07:
Yeah... uh... good luck with that legal action.
Posted by Sparticus on 2009-12-07:
Thanks for the warning. We are heading there in a few weeks. It will probably be just as cold.

We'll be sure to avoid this one... =)

Getting wet in the cold can help you get sick. When your body has to work harder to stay warm, it can't fight off viruses and such as well as it can when you are nice and warm/dry.

So while it does not get you sick directly, it can definitely contribute to it.
Posted by Hugh_Jorgen on 2009-12-07:
Remember that park map they gave you when you entered the park? This ride is listed as a "water ride". People generally expect to get wet on a water ride.
Posted by Slimjim on 2009-12-07:
A fair warning for the unwary. That being said though, if you voluntarily went on a water ride with an 85' drop and actually were to sue and win damages becuase you got wet, I would have to declare our legal system an unrepairable joke.
Posted by goduke on 2009-12-07:
Well, jim, there's probably ample evidence of that already.....
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-12-07:
That's actually the freakin' lamest ride there.

2 things I always take to an amusement park -- disposable parkas(2 for $1 at the dollar tree) and a dry change of clothes. The lockers are cheap.

Once I had an awesome time at Paramount's Kings Dominion, and it rained all day. No lines at all.


Posted by JR in Orlando on 2009-12-07:
Every ad I have ever seen for a River Adventure has always shown people getting wet. Also, almost every ride I have ever seen, the people getting on can see the people getting off. Did you think those people exiting the ride were wet from excitement?
Posted by Buddy01 on 2009-12-07:
I just read that the average temperature in Orlando is 68 degrees. Where I come from, that is warm weather. Once when in Orlando, it was really warm and we were in t-shirts. We passed a family bundled up in winter coats because they were cold.
Posted by JR in Orlando on 2009-12-07:
Buddy01: Are you kidding? 68 degrees is borderline cold. This weekend it was about 50 some degrees. I thought I was going to freeze. Had to put on my long underwear tops to keep warm.

I had the same crazy experience with people in Maine. I went hiking up there all bundled up - It was in the 40's. And here come some people hiking in short pants. I thought what is wrong with these people.

I guess it is all in one's perception.
Posted by Anonymous on 2009-12-07:
BTW, this park is awesome fun. I've been there twice, and am planning to go again.

My sister went a couple of years ago and stayed in one of their resorts and loved the whole experience.
Posted by Skye on 2009-12-07:
How cold is Orlando in November??
Posted by JR in Orlando on 2009-12-07:
Its about 20 degrees below - below what we would like it to be.
Posted by Buddy01 on 2009-12-07:
JR, exactly. It is all in one's perception.
Posted by Flexanimous Fellow on 2009-12-08:
Hmmm...the ride is labeled "River Adventure," the ride vehicles travel on water, and very likely there were obvious indications that water had been inside the vessel even before you sat down and got strapped in. Yet you're appauled you got wet? o.O
Posted by PepperElf on 2009-12-08:
a water ride involves water and the possibility of getting wet?

someone needed to be specifically told this?

better yet, I want to be there when the lawyer actually reviews the case just to see the look on his/her face


it's like suing someone over not putting a warning of "contains nuts" on a jar of nuts that's labeled as nuts.
Posted by Starlord on 2009-12-08:
We went to Sea World once, and kids AND adults were scrambling to get sprayed by Shamu as he swam by. It is all perceptions and what one thinks is fun. Kwitcherbelliakin!
Posted by SassyAnastasia on 2010-06-30:
Um, lady or sir, I've worked at Jurassic Park River Adventure, and Universal Orlando ( not anymore), and I definitely think that you are thinking of the wrong ride. In fact, I am absolutely POSITIVE you are thinking of the wrong ride. Jurassic Park River Adventure gets you wet, but the only place where you get wet is when you go down the 55-foot drop.

Also, othe boats in Jurassic Park River Adventure aren't round, and they don't have safety belts. The boats are BOATS, with ROWS, and lap bars.

I'm pretty sure you're thinking of Popeye and Bluto's Bilge Rat Barge. THAT is a round boat, with safety belts, and gets you absolutely soaking wet.

However, there are about eight signs telling you that you get absolutely soaking wet on your way to that ride, as well as on Jurassic Park River Adventure. Don't blame the company because you failed to read the signs. Also, if you looked at the people getting off the ride ( the exit is RIGHT NEXT TO THE ENTRANCE ), you'd see that the people leaving are soaking wet, from head to toe.

People like you and your family are what makes working at theme parks so frustrating. Get a clue. If you're eating, and you choke, you don't blame the cook. IT'S YOUR FAULT. If you get wet on a ride, it's not because Universal strapped you in and made you wet. You did it to yourself.

The Universal Attraction Attendants don't tell people they're going to get wet because the boat and seats that you sit in are soaking wet when you sit in them. Also, they have too much faith in your intelligence and assume you read the signs. Guess it's in vain, huh?

Get a clue. This isn't a complaint, you're just dumb. "Ruined your thanksgiving" - please! Thank goodness you don't have a heart condition and 'forgot' to read the signs, or you'd really have something to complain about.
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No more skipping the lines
Posted by on 08/20/2007
ORLANDO, FLORIDA -- Those been to Disney World and Universal Studio are aware of the Universal Express Pass and Disney Fast pass service. These services allow you to bypass the standard standby lines for popular rides.

It cut down the wait time for most popular rides down to minutes.

It looks like Universal Studio Orlando is making this an add-on service to their standard theme park tickets.

You will have to pay (per-day/per-ticket) to access the Universal Express Pass service, unless you stay in one of their themed deluxe resorts.

Disney is currently offering golden Disney Fast passes to anyone who endures their one-hour Disney Vacation club (Time-Share) sales pitch. It gives you unlimited access to all Disney Fast pass rides without time restrictions between different rides.

You can also trade up the golden Disney Fast passes for food vouchers, good for $15-20 off all Disney restaurants in the resorts, theme park, and/or downtown Disney.

On the plus side, Universal is building Harry Potter land and replacing the aging Back-To-The-Future ride with the Simpson ride (inspired by the Simpson Movie). Harry Potter land is schedule to be open late 2009. The Simpson ride is schedule to be open next summer 2008.
     
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Posted by Anonymous on 2007-08-20:
I have used this option at Universal's Islands of Adventure. It made for one heck of a pleasant day!
Posted by Anonymous on 2007-08-20:
I have couple of tips for island of adventure.

1. Get there early (9AM). Hit the popular rides before the park get fill-up.

I was able to ride Spiderman on my last day couple of times before the lines get too long.

2. Use the single rider’s line (if available).

I was able to bypass standard lines (45min) or Express Plus (10min) and got on the Hulk ride in minutes.
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Universal Studios Florida; just another corporate greed
Posted by Jright on 11/28/2006
ORLANDO, FLORIDA -- I took my family to Universal Studios in Orlando Florida, and once I was at the Park we realized that if you pay more for admission for the park (About $25) you can purchase what is called Express Plus tickets. These Express tickets holders have separate lines on every ride and will simply allow them to get to the ride much faster than those who are with a regular admission ticket. So basically those who can afford to pay more money can cut through the lines on any ride legally, while those who can’t afford to pay more for the express tickets simply have to wait. The wait on most rides can be very long (about an hour or more) depending on how many express ticket holder chose to go on the same ride (cut through) at the same. The problem with that is most families with children can not afford to pay the extra money for the express tickets since regular admission is already at $77 plus tax. I just think this is just another unfair corporate greed tactics just to make an extra buck.

Note: If you are a company stock holder, an employee of the company or simply a person (sellout) who is paid few bucks to undermine complaints such as this about the corporation, keep your feedback to yourself.
     
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Posted by Demonoid Phenomenon on 2006-11-28:
I kind of get the impression that if you could afford it, you'd be in that Express line in a heartbeat. So, other than being envious, what's your point?
Posted by *Brenda* on 2006-11-28:
We bought it when my family went!
Posted by Bababooey on 2006-11-28:
Expect entrance fees to go higher and service to get even worse at Universal's theme parks now that they are owned by NBC (a subsidiary of the General Electric Corporation)!
Posted by Anonymous on 2006-11-28:
Express tickets are like first class airline tickets. The more you pay the better the service.
Posted by jright on 2006-11-28:
Not exactly like first class Airlines Passengers. First class Passengers don't make you wait longer in line just because they paid more money.
Posted by Sparticus on 2006-11-28:
I was at Disney World in Orlando last year. They had a similar "express line" system, but it was free! All you had to do was pick up your express ticket about an hour or two ahead of time. Then when your time came, you went and got to go through the express line. It was a great technique for helping control the traffic/lines that might normally build up all at the same time since they sold only so many express tickets for each time frame. I wonder if this new pay program is the replacement for the free program? Isn't Universal one of the Disney parks? I may be confused...
Posted by Anonymous on 2006-11-28:
We used the express plus tickets, and, we loved it!
Posted by Slimjim on 2006-11-28:
This surprises me. Last time I was at Universal, it was just like Disney where you sign up for the express line in advance, like a schedule, and it was free. To answer your question Spartcus, I'd say yes, it does look like they option to make express pass a premium on admission. On the second part, no Universal is not a Disney park.
Posted by Anonymous on 2006-11-28:
jright, I forgot to ask - Did you have a good time? I'd like to mention that I've been to both Universal parks twice. The first time I didn't even know about the express plus, and still had a great time!
Posted by rnick821 on 2006-11-28:
I don't necessarily agree with this poster, but I will admit that there is a valid point made here. I looked it up on the web page, and the Express Pass ticket is an additional $40.00 on top of the $77.00 ticket. Having been to Universal Orlando and knowing how busy it can get, I probably would spend the $40.00 myself and get the Express, but I definately can sympathize with the frustration this poster must feel.

When I took a large group of high school students there back in 2003, the Express thing was free. You simply put your ticket into a machine and received a little slip of paper saying when to come back...when you came back at that time, you got to the front of the line. Oh well.
Posted by Anonymous on 2006-11-28:
In regards to Iright's comment, have you never stood in line at the gate waiting to board, while the first class passengers were seated and served their cocktails?
Posted by bill on 2006-11-28:
Express pass is a premium service for which you pay a premium price. I don't see anything wrong with that. If you went to a resturaunt would you expect filet mignon at the same price as ground beef? I also object to your note at the end of the complaint. I am not a stock holder or employee, but I don't see why they shouldn't have the same right to respond to your complaint as anybody else.
Posted by David on 2006-11-28:
I used to be a Universal Studios annual pass holder. I would take my family to the park and you could put your ticket into express pass machines and get a pass to bypass the line during a certain time period an hour or two later. You could not get another express pass until the time period for your current express pass had passed. This gave you the opportunity to plan ahead for your favorite attractions.

Then, last year, they mysteriously closed the express pass machines. We now had to pay extra if we wanted express passes. I also found that all guests that stay in one of the Universal Studios resort properties get express passes as part of the package.

The old way worked well in that a fixed amount of express passes were issued for each attraction for a given time period. When all of the express passes had been issued for a ride, they were no longer issued. Guests waiting in the regular lines were only delayed slightly due to the limited number of express passes. Now, if you are in line for a popular attraction, you may see guests with express passes ride the attraction several times while you are still in line as there is no limit on the express pass use. You can pretty much give up on riding the most popular attraction without waiting in line for several hours. My annual passes became practically worthless. I did not renew them.
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