I’m back from my trip to Scotland! Even though it was a business trip, I had a wonderful time and was able to see many wonderful sights. If you’re across the pond, I highly recommend exploring Scotland if you have the time. As I have time I’ll be uploading photos to Flickr; right now the only photos up are from my seven-hour stop in Paris.
Just before I left, Universal Orlando announced they would be matching Walt Disney World’s one-day, one-park pass price of $82.00. Let’s try to take a look at which ticket has the advantage.
At Walt Disney World, you can choose from four parks to spend your day in, while Universal only has two parks. If I were to rank the parks by value for the $82.00 admission, I would choose the following order:
Advantage: Walt Disney World
Both resorts do offer transportation to its theme parks; visiting the Magic Kingdom requires taking either the monorail or the ferry from the Ticket and Transportation Center. A ticket to any of the Walt Disney World theme parks allows guests to use the resort-wide transportation system, including buses, ferries and monorails, for the day. Universal runs shuttle buses and ferries to the theme parks from its resort hotels; however, Universal’s theme parks are within walking distance of each other and are only separated by its CityWalk shopping and nightlife district. Having everything in walking distance can be quite convenient as many Disneyland visitors will testify.
Advantage: Draw; while Walt Disney World has the size and the transportation to match, Universal’s walking distance convenience can’t be overlooked
Unless a guest is taking public transportation to the parks, paying to park is a requirement. The current price to park at Walt Disney World is $14.00, while Universal charges $15.00; a negligible difference. However, Universal also offers “preferred parking” spots for $20.00 and other higher-priced parking options including valet. Both Walt Disney World and Universal will allow you to leave the parking lot and return the same day at no additional charge.
Even with a perceived decline in Walt Disney World’s cast members, as a whole they still best Universal Studio’s team members (of course, there are exceptions on both sides). If you’re looking for nightlife after a day in the parks, Universal’s CityWalk is the place to be, especially since Walt Disney World closed Pleasure Island. The options when dining at Walt Disney World are immense, but the dining options are spread across the entire property. While Universal’s dining is more limited, all the dining options are within walking distance.
Advantage: Walt Disney World for cast members and dining
If you’re going to spend $82.00 to spend one day in one Walt Disney World or Universal Orlando theme park, it really should be the Magic Kingdom, Epcot, or possibly Universal’s Islands of Adventure. Overall, a day at a Walt Disney World park is going to bring you more value for your money than a Universal park. There’s always an exception, however, and in my opinion it’s Disney’s Animal Kingdom. A day at Animal Kingdom is not worth $82.00; by all means go somewhere else if you only have one theme park day.
Questions? Comments? Let me know below or on Twitter!