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Comparing Disney to Universal

butler, nj
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Comparing Disney to Universal

Me again, thought this would be an easy trip to plan, but now have a roadblock because my nephew who I took to Disney last August told me one of his friends went to Universal Studios and Seaworld and, you guessed it, he wants to go there too?!

He is a typical 10 yr old boy who hears a friend talk about how great this Universal Theme park is and wants to experience it. I have no problem doing Universal and Seaworld, but I want to hear from others on this board who have been to both which one they prefer and why.

So how does Disney compare to Universal/Seaworld (I know Seaworld is seperate from Universal but if I'm not doing Disney I might as well plan a day or two at Seaworld). Oh, and if we decided to do Universal/Seaworld, is it worth it for us to stay at a Universal hotel and which one would you recommend?

Also, should I look into Aquatica?

My head is spinning! LOL

Trinidad
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1. Re: Comparing Disney to Universal

Well this is definitely a toughie

I think that generally, Universal has more to offer boys and those looking for some adrenaline pumping rides.And to top it all off, they have the new Harry Potter part of IOA that is just a thrill for anyone who is a HP fan ( also enjoyed by non fans as well!)

Personally, myself ad my hubby ( 23 and 24 yrs old) prefer the Universal experience. The rides are just more to our taste (faster pace and more edgy)

In order to suggest where you should go , I would need to know if any other kids are going on the trip

butler, nj
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2. Re: Comparing Disney to Universal

The only people going are myself (46) and my nephew (10). We like rollercoasters, but nothing upside down. My issue is that I'm not a big fan of the characters in Universal compared to Disney and don't want to be disappointed, plus I can't imagine it being as magical as Disney is. My nephew is not a Harry Potter fan, I saw some of the HP movies.

Long Island City...
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3. Re: Comparing Disney to Universal

This is tough...but id have to say the rides at universal are better to us (a couple: 24 & 25) some of my favorite rides are the more slow paced rides like twister, jaws, men in black, disaster, jurassic park... Then again my boyfriend loved the thrill rides like hulk and the mummy. If I were a 10 year old boy id pick universal...one con for us was universal was very expensive...we did both parks in one day plus the line jumper, it cost us almost 500 (I think! It was a year ago during spring break). I would say youtube a lot of the rides to see if youre both interested.... We didnt bother with hp, it was a mob and we know nothing about hp....this year were spending 8 days in disney bc theres so much more to see and do there. good luck! Either disney or universal, youll still have a blast.

Swansea
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4. Re: Comparing Disney to Universal

I personally think that Disney parks have more atmosphere and you can walk around and have a great day, seeing the shows etc, without actually going on any rides. Universal have the big rides and coasters but I do find they lack a certain charm, I love Universal Studios btw not so keen on IOA. Seaworld is in between has great rides , some great shows but lacks the theming of either Disney or Universal, but is a great park to walk around.

Cambridgeshire
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5. Re: Comparing Disney to Universal

Universal studios in my opinion is a poor Disney in comparison considering the cost of entry and size, but still worth a visit. Compare the cost of a 14 day Ultimate ticket in Disney (which includes fastpasses), to that of a 14 day pass for both Universal parks and add in say four days of fastpasses, then Universal tickets cost you more than Disney and Universal only have 2 parks, compared to 4 Disney parks and 2 water parks. Buy tickets ahead as gate prices are high, there are 2 parks so make sure that your tickets cover both. Fast passes can be purchased, however from my experience they are expensive waste of money. Under the terms and conditions the Fast Pass can only be used once per ride, however when the park is quiet they do not appear to apply this rule.

Let me also make another suggestion, Discovery Cove is fantastic, expensive but well worth a day there. Besides swimming with Dolphins which is a magical experience, there is a lazy river where the water gently takes you along, a very large aviary, a large lake where you can swim with fish and get some fantastic photos, beaches and other pools.

Fort Worth
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6. Re: Comparing Disney to Universal

If it were me, I would plan my trip to Disney, stay at Disney, and enjoy Disney and all of the magic and perks. Then I would use the Mears "ticket and transport" option, to go to Universal/IOA for one day. They will pick you up at your Disney resort. A 10 year old boy will love Universal/IOA for a day, but I can't see spending the entire trip there. Not a Seaworld fan, but many enjoy it.

Happy planning!

pa
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7. Re: Comparing Disney to Universal

I agree with travelfan, stay at Disney and make a side trip, using the ticket and transport option. The Universal Parks are just not that exciting to spend more than a day at, IMHO of course

www.dreamsunlimitedtravel.com/universal/

We have done this many times, we get round both universal parks by late afternoon. Last trip, the boys, 8 and 9 years old, had had enough by 3pm or so and couldn't wait to get back to Disney. We had Dinner at Chef Mickey's that night and then went over to Magic Kingdom til midnight. It is one of the Best Nights we have ever had !

Horsham, United...
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8. Re: Comparing Disney to Universal

Universal is perfect for a 10 year old boy. He will love it and will find plenty to do & see for a few days, especially if you team it up with a visit to Seaworld.

Disney would actually be my preference although we can always find plenty to do for 2 or 3 days at Universal, especially if staying onsite. The onsite hotels are some of the best in Orlando.

Valley Stream, NY
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9. Re: Comparing Disney to Universal

We do either disney or us/ioa. Our last 2 Orlando trips were Disney, so hoping this year to do us/ioa, staying at Portofino (for the third time). We love both disney and us/ioa, I wouldn't compare them, because they are different. The first time we went the youngest child was an 8 year boy, even though he did go on the very bigger rides, he still enjoyed it, and we love the resort and the pools there. We enjoyed the restaurants on Citiwalk, no reservations necessary, there were 11 of us that time, we also ate at a couple of the restaurants located at the Portofino. The first visit we took a day and went to Seaworld, our friends went to wet and wild (they weren't crazy about it, they like the rides, not the surroundings). The second trip we took a day in the middle and went to Typhoon Lagoon. When we're at Disney, we stay there and do any other parks.

So I agree with USL he will love it and combined with Seaworld and/or Aquatica it will make a great trip!

Valley Stream, NY
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10. Re: Comparing Disney to Universal

Sorry that should read "he didn't go on the bigger rides, he still enjoyed it. :)