Universal Studios Theme Park
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Universal Studios Theme Park

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Last updated: Jan. 19, 2018

114 Universal Studios Theme Park Consumer Reviews and Complaints

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Jan. 19, 2018

My Wife and I decided to have a "Universal" vacation (April 2017 Trip to Both parks for 4 days), we paid roughly 600$ for tickets and never purchased a fast pass. There was a significant wait for Both Harry Potter rides but the theming really makes the time fly by. The park was extremely clean, every significant ride was functioning and we truly had the time of our lives. Though it was expensive we felt that the overall quality justified the price and can't wait for additional prime-time attractions to be added. I'm a 33 year old father and have never cared about Harry Potter, but the quality of the park's attractions have made me a fan, I watched all of the films as a result of my trip and it's not too bad.

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Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Jan. 9, 2018

On Jan 1st, our family of four paid $116 each (total $464) to get in there only to find out all attractions had 1-2 hours waiting lines. Starting at 10:00 am and by 5 pm, we could only get into two of them and watch one show (animal actor), and then it was time to leave. Obvious they ignored the park's capacity and kept (over) selling tickets to maximize profit. Even worse in the gift shop, the Harry Potter magic wands were sold $50 each and their prices were not marked at all. Only when my kids brought them to check out, they were told the costs. But it was too late since the kids already determined to have it.

We thought for $50, they must be of good quality and made of real wood. When we got home and checked it carefully, we found it was cheap solid plastic! (We were not able to notice it in the store since the gift shop was intended to made very dark.) I checked it online (on JCPenney, Amazon, Best Buy, etc) and saw ones of similar quality sold for $6.99 to $14.99. It was just ridiculous.

Furthermore, 2 days after the visit, they sent me an email titled 'share your opinion'. I thought was a survey so I spent several minutes to go through their questions with intention to give them my honest feedback so they know what their customer feel. After answering many questions about our profile, I was surprisingly presented the 'Thank you' page. It gave me an impression that they do not care what you feel at all. What they want is to capture your information for their marketing use! If you are thinking to go there, think it twice. I will never go there again!

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Jan. 6, 2018

We went on Jan 1, 2018. Spent $615 for 2 park to park tickets with express pass so that we could do both parks in 1 day. 8 out of the 11 rides I rode were all the same... 3D, 4D sit in a car of some sort and chase, fly, spin until you cant see straight. The rides were all too much motion. My husband rode 1 and said he wanted to go home. The only good ones that didn't make me dizzy was Jimmy Fallon and ET. I dont recommend anyone go there! I couldn't even go to sleep that night because all I could do was spin, go backwards, dodge things etc.

Verified Reviewer
Original review: Jan. 5, 2018

When my wife call to pay and renew our Premier pass with Universal, they said because we paid off our card early last year, when my wife started it with flex pass. They said that we had violated the agreement and even though we've had a premier pass, for the last year. They would not give us the renewal price, and wanted us to pay 300 extra dollars. Well this is not going to happen, I want to let people be aware, that they may pull this on you. However we do have annual Platinum cards at Disney World, and annual passes to SeaWorld. This year we're going to bypass Universal, and it may be the last time we ever go there.

Verified Reviewer
Original review: Jan. 3, 2018

They are very overpriced and then want you to pay another $150! a person for FastPass. As I stood in line 3 hours for Harry Potter I watched in dismay how they allowed 31 FastPass enter the front of the line and only 9 of regular customers, by the way my one-day ticket for 2 parks was over $200. A hamburger was $15. America wake up!! Boycott this rip-off. Universal should visit Disney. They got it together.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Dec. 23, 2017

Prices were so outrageous I almost threw up and price is the same for a 3 year old as an adult. Just bad business taking advantage of families... Does not have the same ambiance as Disney World... No magic here!

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Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Nov. 20, 2017

I am completely disappointed in this company. They are a mega rich corporation, and I just wanted to take my daughter to Universal Studios for her birthday... I am unable to get time off of work, as several other employees asked for the same time off... I naively expected that because I asked so early, it would be fine, but now I cannot go, and because you are selfish and greedy you will not offer me a refund or exchange so that I cannot take my daughter later... So now we will never attend this park because they can't have a little compassion for people who have things come up in their lives and are not able to attend, so then they lose hundreds of dollars. It's a bad policy and they should be ashamed.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Nov. 2, 2017

Yesterday I was visited Universal Store for return the themed T-shirt what's my friend purchased to me but I never liked, so I brought original receipt and came to Universal CityWalk. I must tell about my experience with everything I expected and met at Universal CityWalk, including free shuttle from my hotel. I'm staying in Comfort Inn at International Drive, free shuttle I took was scheduled to depart hotel at 11:45, and was about same time, driver was nice and professional, making a stop at Best Western next door, I came to Parking Garage Bus Stop, waiting for my friend who ride own bicycle, then park security was assisted him to show where he could parked his bike before going to park entrance. Next security at checking point to Universal CityWalk were highly professional too, you must understand security reasons why they must check your bags, pockets, so cooperate and don't bring unnecessary items for Park!

At Universal CityWalk other employees show where Universal Store is located, actually it's located on the left near approach to the manmade canal, what separate CityWalk from Themed Parks, there, store employees were nice. I didn't have original gift card what purchase was made, and they issued me new Universal Gift card, for $31.90, good for any purchases on Universal Parks and CityWalk, including food, we decided to go Panda Express 2 meals for $27+, and what's left on the card, $4+. We bought ice cream near canal, both employees there and they were professional and nice to us, and I am Jewish, from former SU, while my friend is ** PR.

Then we spent little time sitting on stairs near the canal, then my friend left, while I'm decided to take short round trip on canal boat to nearby Hard Rock Hotel, where I pass the lobby and small food court to return on the boat, again security point, before return to the boat, but it’s simple necessary after 9/11 and Las Vegas shooting! Again security people were professional and nice to you, kindly remain me to pass over electronic boot, since I barely notice it! Then it was about 3:30 pm, so I rush to my earliest shuttle to my hotel, there it was only drawback is for boarding, line 75 doesn't have seating area closer 10 lines down, like 55, and it was sunny day, so I waiting for my bus seating like 10-15 lines down from line 75, and return shuttle was late about 15 min, after 4 pm.

Return shuttle had a longer route back to my hotel too, it was made stops on Quality Inn in Kirckman area, then made stop at La Quinta on American Loop on I-Drive, then drop me at Mango near my Hotel. Overall experience was great, it was leisure spending of my time, and it was like free and completely car free adventure, visiting free of any charges area of CityWalk there, using provided hotel shuttle to parks, btw my shuttle to Universal at 11:45, then continued to Disney's Epcot, where you could use free Disney shuttles, runs often to all Disney Parks and to shopping and entertainment area in Disney Spring (former Downtown Disney)!

Just expect this security screening at the all park entrances, don't bring bulky and unnecessary items, knives, weapons, drugs, opened bottles, but you could bring sealed bottles, sealed cans of water or non alcoholic beverages in reasonable amount, bring extra layer of clothing and rain poncho, if you expected visit parks and stay there for long, but for short visit, don't bring all of that, especially if your visit limited to free CityWalk area. Take your phone, instead of bulky unnecessary cameras, organize your cash and credit cards in your wallets and pockets, get rid of change upon entrance to Universal, loose items too, compact them in one bag and organize it!

Avoid special events, overpriced and below what your expectations, better do them at SeaWorld, instead of Universal, there are sea animals and fish, and Halloween events there are free, for best experience in Florida amusement parks, visit Busch Garden, free shuttle from I-Drive and just slightly over 1 hour ride there, about 70 miles, same as Sea World but Mammals and Wild Animals, better than Disney's Animal Kingdom!!!

Again, on my personal opinion Universal, SeaWorld, and Busch Garden are 3 best parks in Florida, but don't be fool, don't sip wines if you are minor below 21, don't bring knives, sharp scissors and weapons to any amusement parks, don't feed wines to your children and teens, remember legal drinking age in US is 21, don't be fool, and ** smoking is illegal in Florida too, also smoking tobacco inside the building, including e-cigs!!! Sorry for my long comment and choose hotel on I-Drive, it's a main tourist hub in Orlando!!!

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 25, 2017

My husband and I have not been to Universal Studios for many years. We decided to visit Universal Studios to see all the new attractions and enjoy ourselves for the day. We were charged $264.14 just for us 2. I asked why it was more than I had seen on website. We were told the Universal Studio representative that it was more because of the Halloween Horror Nights. So we paid in cash. After paying, we were told we had to leave by 5:00pm. I asked why, most parks we stay until the late evenings to see the parades and fireworks. We were told because of Horror Nights would begin. I told them with the price, we understood it was included. We were told no.

Once we entered and got the Park Guide Map for dates: October 9- 21, 2017 we started to look at the things we wanted to ride and see. As we looked closer, most of the things were closed that day. We were never told that although we were paying a higher price, many of the attractions were closed that day, and we had to leave by 5:00pm giving us less time than other days. That's like buying a meal package at McDonald but told after paying, "Oh, by the way, today you don't get fries nor the drink." BE CAREFUL AND DON'T GET RIP OFF AS WE WERE. OR JUST GO TO ANOTHER PARK. VERY UPSET!!

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 11, 2017

Universal Studios Orlando Florida. Halloween Horror Nights - DON'T GO TO THIS EVENT!!!! On Oct. 6, 2017, my husband and our teenage son attended this event. We were staying on vacation for 11 days. My husband purchased an alcoholic beverage and our teenage age son who has some disabilities with behaviors saw the colorful light up drink and started hounding my husband to taste it. We would never give our son a drink. We are responsible hard working people but we saw he was about to have an outburst with his behavior so as not to make a scene my husband let him take a sip. We went to sit down and my husband put the drink on the table and my son went to pick it up again, I told him to cut it out he cannot have it, at that exact moment a SWAT team of park security were surrounding us. They told us to give them our ID and to come with them and not give them a hard time.

Well what happened next I still can't get over… we filled out paperwork, they took our pictures and told us to hand over our park tickets. Even though I tried to explain what happened and we were not giving him the whole drink. They didn't want to hear it. Then told us we were banned from Universal and all their property for 1 year. Asked us where we were staying, we told them "Cabana Bay". We were escorted out of park and went back to our hotel where hotel security about 6 of them were staking out our room and they locked us out of our room. They then told us we were trespassing on their property for serving alcohol to a minor and we had to leave ASAP. We feel this punishment did not fit the crime. We were treated like low life criminals and once again weren't allowed to speak. I had just recovered from having Cancer and we had been saving our money for this trip for 2 years.

I never ever write reviews but I will go on every website if possible to let the public know how mean and cruel their staff were as well as the police department. I understand the laws of giving alcohol to a minor but for god's sake it was a sip. They are money hungry. They even will throw you out of park if you videotape or take pics of their event. The park tickets were $1,200 which we lost, we also lost hotel money. It cost us another $650 to fly out in morning. I just want people to be aware of this. Did some research and have found out we are not the first people this has happened to. I don't understand why someone hasn't investigated why Universal Studios and the Orlando Police Department are doing this to people. They are rude, obnoxious and threatening. I have been going there for 25 years and spent a lot of money there and never in a million years would expect something like this to happen.

As long as I live I will never step foot on anything Universal nor will I ever go back to Florida... Someone needs to expose that park for what it really is. If they have so much problems with Alcohol in their park they shouldn't serve it... In my opinion, I totally get rules and laws… if we had bought our son a drink and he started becoming rude or if there was vandalism or violence involved but that wasn't the case nor was it the case for other people too. Please look into this and put a stop so another families don't have to suffer the loss of money and humiliation and fear that they put us through. Thank You!

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 7, 2017

My daughter and I attended the Sept 30 Halloween night at Universal Hollywood. Universal sold so many tickets that we could barely move. In the 5 hours available, we saw exactly 2 mazes/rides because the wait was 60-90 min per event. We were horribly disappointed - to the tune of $150 for tickets and $35 for parking. This is just corporate greed, pure and simple.

Verified Reviewer
Original review: Aug. 7, 2017

Please help me! Have you seen anybody 90F outside Humidity % 30 and waiting 3hrs to line just get on one second Harry Potter attraction. They are using people. They are fooling people. All they want charge 100$ allow millions people to get in Universal Studio.

Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: July 22, 2017

After driving from Connecticut specifically to go to Universal Studio's Orlando Harry Potter World - one of our children got a stomach virus, which spread to our other 2 children. We waited it out, but there was no way we would be able to attend and have an enjoyable experience. I called customer service 2 times - both times the representatives were pleasant and very helpful. I just got off the phone after I was told we would receive a full refund on all 5 tickets. After reading awful reviews for Universal Orlando online, I was not expecting this. I hope in time we will be able to make this trip again and our children can fully enjoy the Harry Potter experience. The representative ended the conversation by wishing all of our children a speedy recovery. 5 stars for Universal Orlando customer service! Thank you!!!

Verified Reviewer
Original review: July 13, 2017

I was just told after waiting an hour in the guest services that multiple sclerosis doesn't qualify for attraction assistance pass. I am in a ECV and can stand, but cannot walk any distance. Shame on you Universal. So far, the experience has been awful. The guest services person was less than friendly or empathetic.

Verified Reviewer
Original review: July 4, 2017

Overcharged on Florida resident pass. I have been Universal season holder since 2009, my wife and son. Our passes are debited out of our account and went from $77.00 for all 3 of us for 5 years and then $118, this year $130. No warning.

Verified Reviewer
Original review: June 30, 2017

I would like to explain everyone about my experience with Universal Studio and Volcano Bay in Orlando Florida. I visited Universal Studio and Islands of Adventure on 29th of June, the moment of entrance was amazing except security people; I had a feeling I'm going trough TSA check by their behavior and addressing to guests.

When we entered universal Studio gate it was amazing view and we came to Transformers Nest where we have decided to go for a ride. We waited over 90 minutes to reach the ride and ride was short. After that we went to Despicable Me where we stayed in line over 1 hour and then we were told that ride is closed so we had to find another ride. So far only one close by was 4D Shrek. We waited over two hours for shrek and when we entered the movie auditorium they couldn't find place for us, so we waited some more and finally managed to see the 4D show. My temper is still cool in regards to this however my legs started to hurt including my company.

This is 5 and half hours later we decided since; King Kong, Spider-Man, Jurassic Park rides were closed. The only ride left to see that was any good was Harry Potter. We waited in the line for almost 2 and half hours and then finally see the show that was very nice. From there we decided to go to world of adventure with Hogwarts express where we had 2 and half hours waiting in line for a ride that lasted about 6 minutes. 9 hours waiting and waiting for two rides??? Party of six we decided that that would be all for today and we called it quits. It was waste of time and money.

Next day 30th June we went to Volcano Bay as they said you don't have to wait as you have electronic bracelets which you can check in for a ride and then come back to ride when your time is up! I was happy thinking that this would make up for lost cause in Universal Studio and island of adventure. We arrived to Volcano Bay at 8:30 am. It looks magical, quickly we found place to sit by the Volcano pool and we started to check rides. I went for the most scary one that comes from top of Volcano, I waited almost 212 minutes and upon coming back to check in the guy told me, "You need to weigh in! The weight limit is 200lbs only." I was laughing at the person and ask him why he didn't disclose this at beginning, he said he was sorry and just pretended I was not there!

Finally I checked in for a ride Ohno that was waiting time 95 minutes. I waited and finally I went on the ride when my watch was saying ride now. I arrived to ride then again waited 30 minutes to get my turn for ride that lasted 20 seconds. It was a thrill but two hours waiting for 20 sec ride. After all I wanted to take my team to IKA MOANA ride where waiting was 195 minutes; during this 195 minutes of waiting ride was closed and reopened, delayed and barely at the end we managed to go for a ride almost 4 hours from time of check in. As soon we were done with the ride the park was suspending all rides due to bad weather arriving to that area.

Two things: once you check in for some ride you can't use other rides or check for them. Only one ride at the time you can wait for, so if you miss that one ride you have to go from the beginning. At that point I went to the exit as everyone was leaving so there was no point staying there. I talked to customer service and told them what happened, I talked to manager by name Orlando, I explained to him that I came 16,000 miles away for this event and that I don't have time to prolong this visit and he told me he is sorry but he can't do anything for me. He offered me ticket for one day to come again as well $100 dinner certificate.

Now let's recap: Airplane 4 business class tickets for overseas flights, orange lake resort villa, rental car, and birthday present that went so bad in the childhood. Not to mention almost 1,800 USD tickets for park. I'm in it about 19,000 USD and these people are offering me free one day pass??? Wow what a customer focus and presentation. My honest conclusion is that I will never recommend to anyone Universal Studio or Volcano Bay as the way they showed me how they treat guests. Maybe one day when they realize how much people have spent in order to reach there they would understand that this one time pass means nothing compared to waste of time and money.

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Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: June 6, 2017

There is NO WAY to pass the lines unless you pay more money. Even then you still have to wait. We spent the entire day until closing and only ended up going to about five rides. As much as I like the rides I will not go back unless they get their act together. They were not at all accommodating to my disabled husband. I was told at customer relations that he can use their wheelchair to wait in line. Most lines were 50 to 80 minutes (This was on a Monday). I feel like I was ripped off. Go to Disney. They have a fast pass that will tell you what time to come back (it is included with the price of the tickets). I brought my 3 grandkids, myself, daughter and husband. Tickets were over $900.00, stay away from this place in Orlando. Not at all worth it. I spoke to many people and heard mostly complaints.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: April 2, 2017

Upon a recent visit to Universal Studios Orlando the lack of customer service is appalling. From the valet attendant to ride operators to waitresses. Valet thought it was easier to tag write the information on some dust on the window than to fill out a slip. When asked them about that, walked away and never came back. The waitress at the restaurant was fair, but when your family orders a meal it should be brought out together. When only part of the meal came out got told that chef thought parts were burnt and he wasn't going to send out those parts. When asked why not send it all out together got "Well we didn't burn that part."

Ride attendants couldn't even answer a simple question about where the nearest restroom was. When asked he told us to check our map. At the same attractions had an attendant accuse us of trying to sneak a fanny pack on the ride. I went through the metal detector, like instructed. It was my stomach and belt that the girl was referring to in front of my children. Definitely humiliating. Will not be visiting your parks again. We were Annual Premier Passholders. Not anymore. Will take my business elsewhere.

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Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: March 23, 2017

Never ever again standing in line for over an hour... while those that pay the additional fee... get right on the ride. Our line has not moved for 15 minutes while the pay extra line move Thru with no delay... so again I will never bring my family to this pro again... Unless you're RICH and pay extra stay home or go to another park.

Verified Buyer
Original review: March 11, 2017

Caveat Emptor!! Visited Louies-6 restaurant on 3/10 at 3:03:26 pm. If you have children or are a senior citizen with a limited appetite due to age and seek a Children's Meal when eating at Louies-6 Italian Restaurant in the Universal Studios park you will not find any child's menu listed on any of this restaurants menu signages... none whatsoever.

Just to see what they would say we asked if they served children's portions of Spaghetti and they said yes they serve children's portions. But there is nothing on thier menu signage saying they sell kids menu items. So what this boils down to is that they are misleading their customers with deceptive dishonest marketing, knowing that if customers do not see a Child's Menu listed they are forced to purchase an adult sized meals for their children. Contemptible business practice that not ethical. This affects whole families who are trying to feed their children on a budget and prevents them from doing so. Also forcing seniors to buy sizes they cannot consume and spend extra money in doing so. Universal should post Children/Kids menus on all of their menu boards. IF they choose not to sell kids meals so be it but do not be deceive your customers.

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Original review: Feb. 24, 2017

My family and I (3 adults) visited Universal Studios on Feb. 24, 2017. We've made this trip part of our vacation for the last 15 years. However every time I visit, it seems like there are two classes of people, the rich and the average consumer. Although as an average consumer, we purchased a one day pass to Universal Studio that cost us $330 plus tax, with meals and souvenirs, we spent a total of $1000.00 in one day. We are a family of professionals, with very good means. However yesterday I truly felt like a second class citizen. I do not mind the fact of paying an extra $95 for an express pass, because you have a choice. However what I do find insulting is when a ride is not accessible at all because it is reserved for a private event!! I believe if Universal Studios wants to offer a private event, it should be done after hours, either before 8 AM or after 8 PM when the park is closed!!

My daughter tried to access the Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit all day, but the wait time was too long every time she checked the Universal app on her phone. It was over an hour wait. So we decided we would wait to do the ride at the end. We showed up to wait in line at 6:30 PM just to be told that the ride was closed for a private event! Nowhere was it indicated, we were not told when we arrived and paid for our tickets, there were no signs at the entrance of the ride and no indication on their website. I was so insulted, and truly felt like a second class citizen! This has confirmed to me that my vacation plans will change. My family and I will spend our $1000.00 in one day elsewhere where we will be more respected and appreciated!!

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Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Feb. 14, 2017

My son is a long haul truck driver. For his upcoming birthday we decided to give him a gift card to Universal Studio's Orlando since he plans to be there in April. I wanted to just order an e-card that would be emailed directly to him. Amazingly... I found out that you can't do that at Universal. So, I ordered a regular gift card that I wanted sent to his Dad and step-Mom in Florida. That way it would be there when he arrived. CAN'T do that either! I can only have the card delivered to ME and then I have to send it to Florida. I am astounded at how a place that prides itself on the latest in technologies could be so BACKWARD!

Verified Reviewer
Original review: Feb. 12, 2017

My family and I decided to visit Universal Studios in Orlando this past August (2016). Of course, it down poured just as we arrived. The rain lasted for about an hour. We were then ready to experience the parks. The first thing I hated was the mandatory lockers. You have to put everything into this locker. The first 45 minutes (I believe) was free, but the ride took longer. You then had to find someone to unlock the locker, so you can pay the fee. I did not buy one single thing at the park because of this locker situation.

The next thing was that the locker leaked. My son's phone was sitting in a puddle of water when we returned from the ride. It did not work for a good 24 hours after. The phone proceeded to die 1 month later. The tech said the cause was water damage. The last episode was my other son put his phone and wallet into a zippered pocket. When he tried to get onto a ride, he was told to put his items into a locker. The locker system STINKS! One other thing that happened was on the King Kong ride. The ride glitched big time right in the middle of the ride. We were not offered to ride again. I won't be taking my family back.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Jan. 13, 2017

In May 2016 me, my husband, daughter and her friend came to Orlando to Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure. It was the worst time of my life. Bought tickets for a week and got to the park and they did not work and it took them 2 hours to get it straight and the lady at the window was very nasty telling us we would have to pay again. The rides was not working. They did not offer any compensation for their mess up not even a phone call back to say sorry or kiss they butt or nothing. Very disappointed with Orlando. Will never go back. Paid for an experience, got BS instead, too much money wasted. I know y'all don't care because people still going to come but understand this trip we take 3 times a year now we will not take again.

Verified Reviewer
Original review: Jan. 8, 2017

I wish the execs at Universal Hollywood could spend a day at their park in a wheelchair. My family is unique as we have myself, the mother, in a mobility scooter and our son uses a pediatric chair also. My husband and daughter were with us too. We parked with our Metro pass/DMV placard at the Metro stop. The bridge over to the shuttle stop is awesome in keeping pedestrians off the street. BUT then it all went south: The first shuttle that came did not have a working wheelchair lift. We waited again and the next shuttle did have a lift but was very slow and bumpy. The shuttle itself barely made it up the hill and smelled like burning engine when we were dropped off in front.

The next issue was the Harry Potter area. The cobblestone walkway is real cobblestone: It was actually painful to ride the scooter over this. My husband could push our son in the shops but I could not get the scooter in due to narrow aisles and general overcrowding. I had to wait outside. The lady's restroom had a handicap stall but it was hard to maneuver the entrance, around the line for the baby change area to the stalls. I did not see the wheelchair sink. The worse part was the ride in the castle: to stay in the scooter we had to use the disability entrance: completely plain and non-interactive. A huge part of this attraction is walking through the castle: the line walks the crowd through the various areas of 'Hogwart's castle'. This part of the attraction is not accessible at all. Me and my son had no access to this and we had no idea we would miss so much and was very disappointing.

Then we had to wait for about 20 minutes before taking an elevator from the disabled line to the boarding area. There was one party of 4 and a party of 6 ahead of us: in 3 groups they went down the elevator, rode the ride, then returned up the elevator. The first party had to be completely back upstairs and on the way to the exit before the next part could start boarding the elevator. When we finally get to board we sat for another few minutes before the operator could get the ride started... but then had to wait again at the point where the 'disabled car' merged onto the regular track: It didn't seem fair to encounter so many trivial delays that would not have occurred in the regular line.

Then the butterbeer. This wasn't an accessible thing but still terrible: Our son has a disease called Mastocytosis and is allergic to many many items. He is anaphylactic to high fructose corn syrup. We asked the staff at both butterbeer kiosks for a printed ingredients list and they refused. They would only admit to traces of nuts. First of all: I can see the milk/cream on top and dairy is one of the top 8 that must be declared. Secondly, an ingredients list is different from a recipe: I was asking for valid medical reasons. We ended up telling our son there was egg and milk in the product so he would understand why we weren't buying BUT I would have loved to have bought this if we could verify it was safe.

We scooted to Minion World where the ramp to get to Minion ride has got to be within one degree of ADA compliance: way too steep. A manual chair would be difficult to manipulate for an adult. The lower lot was a nightmare to get to: There are elevators that take wheeled parties to a shuttle stop area. We wait about 20 minutes for the shuttle to take us down to the lower lot. There was a 50/50 split between wheelchairs and strollers using this shuttle. A longer wait on the way back up. There is only one shuttle for all wheelchairs and strollers, taking 3-4 wheelchairs/scooters/strollers at a time to a major area of the park. The 4 part escalator that carries abled bodies from the main park to the lower lot is an attraction within itself and not accessible for mobility devices yet much quicker than getting the shuttle.

The backlot tour: again over-crowding and narrow walkways to and from the one elevator. AND for the second time today, the first tram's wheelchair lift was broken. So we waited longer for tram #2. The journey back to the car was the worst of all: We had eaten dinner at the City Walk then returned to the shuttle stop to take us back down the hill. 15 minutes and the shuttle with the broken lift (this was the first one to come by earlier today). So another 15-20 minutes. But the same shuttle had returned. Then the young lady who worked there said the hotel van would be coming by because there is no tram with a wheelchair lift right now.

The SECOND time the hotel shuttle blew right past where we were waiting (with the employee with the walkie talkie). We decide to walk to the pick-up area to see and the kids wait while Kevin gets the car. We only see stairs leading down to the street. So we go to the elevator in the Frankenstein parking lot. We take the elevator to the second floor, as low as it goes, and look for a way to get out to the street. Instead we find Erik. Erik is a parking employee who was just finishing his lunch break. He walked with us back up the elevator and then walked us through the crowd in the front and down the (way too steep) ramp to the sidewalk. He walked with us down to the light on Hotel Drive. But the road from that point was way too steep to safely try ride the mobility scooter down: My husband pushes our son down the hill while my daughter and I wait in the empty parking lot for them to come back with the car.

The degree of the grade is quite steep. Kevin says he didn't feel comfortable pushing Zach, a 9 year old, in his stroller/wheelchair down such a steep grade. BUT the shuttles didn't have a working lift. There should have been some other 'real' means of ways to safely get those who use wheelchairs up and down that hill. We are thankful for the employee that helped us but it is scary that there isn't much option we had getting back to the car. From leaving the restaurant at City Walk to getting everybody and scooter in our car was almost 2 hours and that is ridiculous. Universal should have put a shuttle for wheelchairs once the big trams no longer work well. We bought the SoCal passes and this was our first trip. I don't think we'll go again: the park is not accessible enough and I don't want to be stranded away from the car again.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Dec. 27, 2016

This review is mostly for the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Studios Hollywood. The Guest Relations people are very good and tried to take care of us. My boyfriend took me to Universals as a surprise so we could explore the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. He bought Gate A tickets and the preferred parking to ensure we would have a good time. No long lines or long walks. We enter the park and walk around to take in the scenery and explore the shops. We bought robes and one rfid wand and the wand and cane for Lucius Malfoy. This is where it starts getting annoying.

We then tried to go onto the main ride but are stopped at the gate by a guy. We were told that the cane wouldn't be allowed inside. We asked about lockers and were told that the lockers wouldn't fit the cane. So we walked out of Potter land and talked to guest relations, who happen to be placed right outside. They tell us that we should be able to bring the cane inside, especially since we bought it there.

So we walk back to the ride and ask a different person, a girl, where the Gate A people go. This person wouldn't tell us and wouldn't let us through. We explain that the guest relations people said we can bring it in. She then says that we can bring it in but they will not hold it for us but still wouldn't tell us where to go. She kept repeating that we couldn't bring it in. She then suggested ride switching. I told her to not suggest that since the point of coming to a theme park is to spend the day together and if she suggests that, she will get people mad at her. She agrees with me and then proceeds to suggest ride switching again.

At this point my boyfriend and I are no longer having fun and feel that we wasted our money and our time. We have walked back and forth and spent about an hour dealing with a situation that was so idiotic. We bought this cane at this part of the park, why wouldn't we be allowed to bring in on one of the only rides there? So we walk away again, talk to guest relations and they are equally upset. They offer to hold the cane for us at the office, which was nice of them but we ended up buying more merchandise at the main store at the front. We solved the problem by putting everything away in the car. When we finally went on the ride, we felt that it was too short and definitely not worth the time we wasted.

We also had one other problem. Other guests thought that we worked at the park because we were in robes. We couldn't understand why at first, all the crew members were dressed in professor or prefect robes, or so it seemed. When we finally got into the main ride, all the crew members were wearing student robes. This doesn't make sense. Why would the crew members wear robes that your guests can buy? It really ruined the magic for us when we kept getting stopped for directions. Summary of this review: Please don't sell something that your ride operators cannot hold for you and please don't have your crew wearing something your guests can buy.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Dec. 1, 2016

At 9:30 p.m. on Monday, November 28, 2016, I, Jorge **, and three friends, all adults over 40, visited the City Walk at Universal Studios in Orlando. At the access control I was stopped for carrying one (1) beer. Accepting the regulations I took the bottle to the bathroom and poured its contents into the sink. On the way to the entrance, I'm intercepted by security supervisor JIM ** and asks me about the beer. I told him I threw it in the trash. In a few minutes the supervisor JIM ** returns and in a very rude, derogatory, contemptuous and discriminatory manner, accusing me that I took it for stupid because according to him I drank the beer, and stopping for several minutes with false and bad accusations.

We felt great frustration, embarrassment, and humiliation over the mistreatment of this supervisor JIM ** for the rest of the night. I hope that Universal Studios Resort takes into account my complaint, because... "Where the mistreatment begins, magic, fantasy, and the passion of having an incredible time are over." Thank you very much for your attention.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Nov. 22, 2016

As much as I wish I could enjoy this trip I'm hurt that you all didn't get back with me in July of this year. I had paid over 2,000.00 for 6 adults with a passport to rides with it... Myself and my husband were in wheelchairs and two had to push us all day. Therefore they nor us enjoyed it. We sure was hoping to hear back from you all. We were under the understanding that once across we could trade in the wheelchairs to motorized ones so all our sons could enjoy the park. We went back several times checking on one. When we did get the call we had made it to Harry Potter land and just gotten off the train. There was no way we'd be there in 10 minutes being the two sons that had pushed us was already tired... The best part of our tickets was the meals we ate... I still feel bad for my two sons that did not let us down. One has light Cerebral Palsy. The other son has OCDD and Bipolar. They literally gave up their day for us their parents. God bless you all.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Nov. 8, 2016

I'm Ukrainian but I've been living in Miami for a bit more than a year now. My mom finally came to visit me - I haven't seen her for a year and a half, she lives in Ukraine. I decided to take her to Universal Parks cause she always wanted to go and me myself have never been there... I purchased two days park-to-park tickets for both of us. We planned our park's visit for today (Monday) and tomorrow.

We just got back to our hotel, we came straight from the park... Right now its 9:17pm. The day started well... Lines were long since the morning. We went straight to the Universal park planning Island of adventures for tomorrow. Line for the minions ride was long since 10:00 am (that's about the time we got in after waited for an hour in line to get our physical tickets, which I actually purchased in advance in the internet, but the park requires that you PRINT out your confirmation number and stand in line with everyone else to get your actual tickets).

The wait for the rides is important for the later issue. In the park's app it said the line for Shrek was 25 min - so we went there. We waited 50 min. Wanted to ride the Transformers - it was delayed for about an hour. We kept walking around, taking pictures, rode the Mummy, waited. I was keeping it positive. The line for Simpsons was an hour! Harry Potter - about 35 min. There was a delay with the train connecting the two parks, we waited in line for about 30min, but we used that time to eat whatever we brought with us...

We came to the Island of Adventure around 5pm. Went straight to the Harry Potter largest ride and surprisingly the wait there was very small. The same with the Jurassic Park. It was 5:40. I saw in the app that the wait for King Kong ride was 60 min, the whole day I was checking. So I decided to do that, cause it was already the end of the day, park is opened till 7pm, so it's alright. No one told us nothing when we went inside to stand in line - they just let us go.

After about 15min of waiting we heard the announcement that they were having a brief delay. This announcement repeated again in about 10 min. The line was constantly moving forward little by little so we thought all is good. Then the sound went off. Then there was another announcement saying it's an extended delay. Then they announced it's working again. Hurray! The line began to move. Then again a brief delay. It was already 7pm so there was no point in going outside.

After another 20 min it became again an extended delay. Then they announced in another 10 min that they don't know when the ride will resume working. Still no one tells us to leave. We're standing. Another 10-15 min – it's working again! Hurray. We approached the tracks itself in another 15-20 min. And it stopped working again. Same story - brief delay, extended delay, then we don't know when it's gonna work again. Around 8pm we were given a single-ride express pass each and asked to leave...

I took my mom straight to the customer's support. There were people that left the King Kong ride after standing in line with us for an hour - as you understand they didn't even get that single free ride pass. There were about 15 to 20 people in line for customer's support. Everyone was very very upset and unsatisfied with this situation and park's attempt to compensate us waiting in line for 2.5 hours... We've all talked and shared our thoughts.

A mom with her son in front of us weren't even going to come back tomorrow. But me and my mom were. That lady got free park tickets that she can use whenever she wants, they were from Atlanta. My mom came from Ukraine. And the lady at the desk offered us 5 single-ride express passes each for tomorrow. To say I wasn't satisfied with this solution is to say it very politely. I asked to speak with a manager. It was already around 8:40pm, my mom and I were tired to say the least.

The manager came. His name is Bobby. I explained the whole experience to him again, the fact that other people got free park tickets and we don't even get an express pass to all the rides tomorrow was so unfair. I said that I would like to come back tomorrow in a good mood, thus I would wish to be compensated with express passes to all the rides to both parks at least. I also asked for the free parking tomorrow.

I was sure that the stuff would cooperate to help us enjoy our day tomorrow. But the truth is that the park is just ripping people off. What I asked for would cost them absolutely nothing, even if they would add a free lunch. Honestly, it's true. The manager spoke to me in a very bad manner - I say to me, because my mom doesn't speak English. I explained my concern about free park tickets and how unfair their solution to our situation is.

His response was that based on my experience the maximum we are getting is 7 single-ride express tickets each. That's all. And there is nothing else we will get. They are only compensating us for the time we lost on the ride, which doesn't make any sense to me. I worked in customer service myself, and I know how this works. The people who weren't planning to come back to the park tomorrow got the free park tickets, the worth of which is much more than even just two express passes which I asked for.

The manager talked to me in a manner that made me feel so bad, and so less of a person than other people who weren't planning on coming back tomorrow. I repeated that I'm not satisfied with his solution and I'm really feeling frustrated now and sad. Plus I was feeling so bad, because I really wanted to give a great experience to my mom. He brought me to tears and we left the office with those 7 single-ride express passes each.

All the way to the exit I was hysterical, crying not being able to stop. We stopped at another customer's service office right next to the exit to the parking already. With tears I just wanted to let them know how another manager talked to me that now I'm leaving the Universal crying like that. It's not normal. I don't know if they understood me with my sobbing, but that's the experience I got. We have to go back there tomorrow, as we planned, because the money is paid already. But I just wish that my first experience in the Universal's land of wonders was different. Wish a good evening to everybody and hope you'll have a much better experience in these parks.

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Original review: Oct. 25, 2016

I attended HHN 26 on Oct. 22. Now mind you me and my party of 15 had just arrived around 9 pm. So around 11:30 we're entering the Walking Dead Exhibit and one of the employees who were in character was walking backwards towards me and my niece so as she got up on us she turned abruptly but didn't expect to see my niece. So she was startled and me being the jokester of course I started laughing and I said "wow my niece scared you instead of you scaring her." Really didn't think nothing else of it. So as I'm walking off and laughing she comes up behind me and say I quote "KEEP TALKING ** I WILL SPIT IN YOUR FACE **." As you all know I almost lost it. For someone to DISRESPECT me the way she did was uncalled for.

So I went and found a park employee and proceeded to let her know what happened. She acted as if she didn't want to help so I asked her to call security before this situation escalated and she did. So my niece and I wrote a WITNESS STATEMENT against the park employee JUSTIN. The security never told me that once I was finish with that process that I had to go to GUEST SERVICES to follow up with my complaint. So to make a long story short I called UNIVERSAL STUDIOS today to do a follow-up. My complaint was never documented and they told me it's really nothing they can do since I did not follow up with GUEST SERVICES that night. Oh wait a minute. They did say they can give me 10 percent off my next visit.

Mind you me and my friends spent over 3000 dollars and we were only in the park for 2 hours because after that incident my NIGHT WAS RUINED so I left the park. So if you plan on visiting UNIVERSAL STUDIOS and ever GET DISRESPECTED IN ANY WAY, SHAPE OR FORM DON'T EXPECT ANY COMPENSATION FOR YOUR INCONVENIENCES.

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Universal Studios Theme Park expert review by ConsumerAffairs

Universal Orlando opened in 1990 and began expanding in 1994 to become a multi-day vacation resort. It now includes two parks, Universal Studios Orlando and Universal’s Islands of Adventure, on over 200 acres.

  • Rides: Both parks feature award-winning rides. Revenge of the Mummy has won the Golden Ticket award for Best Indoor Roller Coaster every year since 2008. For the past two years, Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey has won the Best Dark Ride Golden Ticket.

  • Halloween: Every September and October, Universal Studios Orlando hosts Halloween Horror Nights. During this event, the park is invaded by all kinds of monsters, and visitors can tour haunted houses. Universal has won the Golden Ticket for the Best Halloween Event every year since 2008.

  • Harry Potter: Both Universal Orlando and Islands of Adventure have Harry Potter attractions. Visitors can shop in Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes and then take the Hogwarts Express from Diagon Alley to Hogsmeade.

  • Pet friendly: Several of the on-site hotels at Universal Studios are pet friendly. There are designated areas for dog walking, and special arrangements can be made with housekeeping when pets are staying in visitors’ rooms. Pets must have all appropriate vaccinations.

  • CityWalk: This venue offers visitors a variety of dining experiences that are suitable for all different types of travelers, from families with small children to couples looking for a romantic meal. It also has live entertainment, miniature golf, a movie theater and unique boutiques.

  • Best for: Universal Studios Orlando and Islands of Adventure is great for families, young adults and solo travelers. Movie lovers will especially enjoy many of the attractions.

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