We’ve been to Disney twice in recent years, first year on property & second off property. We, as a family, received our MB’s customised with colour & names, at Port Orleans Riverside & was able to use them again the following year. So in the grand scheme of things, the cost to my family were basically nothing. I would fully expect Universal Hotels to do the same.
If you are staying off property you simply go & buy a cheap band upon arrival on property or treat yourself to a limited edition band for a few dollars more. These give you a different experience when you scan in for rides, for example a Yoda band scans you hear a Yoda voice. How cool would that be in Universal with all the rides & Characters they have? Homer, E.T, Terminator, I could go on.
Booking Fast Passes becomes a integral part of holiday planning & adds to the general sense of excitement for the trip. We managed to make 5 additional fast passes in Magic Kingdom, after our initial 3. That was on top of the walk ins we did. In total we achieved over 20 rides that day. Fast Pass gave us the security to achieve this feat. Yes Disney had to fit Fast Pass to all rides or experiences but don’t Universal already do this with Express Pass?
Now I don’t believe Universal will adopt that model, I believe Magic Bands will come & of coarse they’ll be named Express Bands or Thrill Bands etc etc etc & on the day you check in instead of receiving room keys then taking your photo for Express Pass & getting another pass it’ll all be linked to your band, along with your credit card. My experience at HHN a few years ago was walking around with a park ticket, an Express Pass then a HHN Print out were our barcodes wouldn’t scan so queues & tutting built up behind us. I can’t wait for this technology to come to Universal, think of the new water park & rumoured 3rd gate, you’d have tickets coming out your ears!
Express Pass lines were longer, last August, in some cases (Shrek, The Mummy, Minions & Rip Ride Rocket) so maybe Fast Pass style time slots wouldn’t be a bad thing? I can’t wait for my yellow Homer Express Band.
But you know what, if you do want that care free experience that’s an option too, it’s the wrong option because coming from the UK, time is money. Lou can sit on benches & watch the world go by but I got rides to ride baby.