Florida - any tips?

Old Mar 12th 2014, 6:29 am
  #1  
BE Forum Addict
Thread Starter
 
flares's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2009
Posts: 2,968
flares has a reputation beyond reputeflares has a reputation beyond reputeflares has a reputation beyond reputeflares has a reputation beyond reputeflares has a reputation beyond reputeflares has a reputation beyond reputeflares has a reputation beyond reputeflares has a reputation beyond reputeflares has a reputation beyond reputeflares has a reputation beyond reputeflares has a reputation beyond repute
Default Florida - any tips?

May head Stateside again soon after last years successful lads trip to Vegas and San Francisco.

This time it'll be a family hol. Quite like the idea of Flo-rida.

Not overly keen on Theme Parks but would take one or two in for the kids.

Anyone been? Any tips apart from take some elastic-wasted strides?

I'm clueless - don't even know what time of year is best to go.

flares
flares is offline  
Old Mar 12th 2014, 6:56 am
  #2  
**** it we'll do it live
 
shiva's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2004
Location: Dubai
Posts: 7,892
shiva has a reputation beyond reputeshiva has a reputation beyond reputeshiva has a reputation beyond reputeshiva has a reputation beyond reputeshiva has a reputation beyond reputeshiva has a reputation beyond reputeshiva has a reputation beyond reputeshiva has a reputation beyond reputeshiva has a reputation beyond reputeshiva has a reputation beyond reputeshiva has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Florida - any tips?

dont knock on any strange doors when pissed
shiva is offline  
Old Mar 12th 2014, 8:17 am
  #3  
Account Closed
 
Joined: Mar 2012
Location: Dubai, working at Dust World Central
Posts: 3,706
mikewot has a reputation beyond reputemikewot has a reputation beyond reputemikewot has a reputation beyond reputemikewot has a reputation beyond reputemikewot has a reputation beyond reputemikewot has a reputation beyond reputemikewot has a reputation beyond reputemikewot has a reputation beyond reputemikewot has a reputation beyond reputemikewot has a reputation beyond reputemikewot has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Florida - any tips?

Busch Gardens is a must. Spaceport USA (Cape Canaveral in old money) is another must, see the moon landings exhibition and old space capsules, plus tour of the launch pads.
Obviously Disney and Universal Studios. Best tip, get there at opening time (usually 9) and start at the back, then move to the front. Most people start at the front so the lines (queue in English) are long.
Sea World is never too busy go after lunch, get a stamp and go out for dinner, then come back for the evening show.

If you like American type clothes, jeans, sweat tops, sneakers etc. then take an empty suitcase or two because clothes of very good quality are about 2/3rds UK price or less in the huge malls.

Don't think you can spend all day every day in the parks, it's very tiring. Plan to do a day or two, then a day off or short mall visit.
Depending on time of year it rains heavily for a few minutes, plenty of lightning etc. but then dries out in 30 minutes.
mikewot is offline  
Old Mar 12th 2014, 9:46 am
  #4  
Shark Fisherman
 
britexpat76's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2012
Location: Doha
Posts: 4,567
britexpat76 has a reputation beyond reputebritexpat76 has a reputation beyond reputebritexpat76 has a reputation beyond reputebritexpat76 has a reputation beyond reputebritexpat76 has a reputation beyond reputebritexpat76 has a reputation beyond reputebritexpat76 has a reputation beyond reputebritexpat76 has a reputation beyond reputebritexpat76 has a reputation beyond reputebritexpat76 has a reputation beyond reputebritexpat76 has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Florida - any tips?

^^as mike said^^ and add in Miami. Grab a hire car and spend a few days kicking back on South Beach, breakfast in the News Cafe, coconut grove and mooch down to the Keys. Its awesome - I did it at Xmas and the weather was great.
britexpat76 is offline  
Old Mar 12th 2014, 1:52 pm
  #5  
BE Enthusiast
 
the_red_sheep's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2009
Location: Downtown, Dubai
Posts: 782
the_red_sheep has a reputation beyond reputethe_red_sheep has a reputation beyond reputethe_red_sheep has a reputation beyond reputethe_red_sheep has a reputation beyond reputethe_red_sheep has a reputation beyond reputethe_red_sheep has a reputation beyond reputethe_red_sheep has a reputation beyond reputethe_red_sheep has a reputation beyond reputethe_red_sheep has a reputation beyond reputethe_red_sheep has a reputation beyond reputethe_red_sheep has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Florida - any tips?

If you can avoid UK school holidays, and also try and avoid any US holidays. October is a decent time of year to go – not to hot, or humid, or rainy.

Go to the theme parks during the week. One of the guide books (I forget which) has a chart in the back showing which days each is busiest and quietest. I found it was pretty spot on, spent a day in Universal walking straight on to rides. Use the ‘fast track’ tickets in the parks. The food in the parks (particularly Disney) is expensive and average. Disney fireworks at the closing time are decent, as are their parades.

Hire a car to get around.

Rent a villa to stay in, or hotel on International Drive.

The food in generally is quantity over quality, but cheap.

The beer is poor.

Great bargains when shopping at the outlet malls. Remember to pick up your discount voucher book from the visitor desk. And, I think you can claim tax back on purchases (or is that only in Texas?). Again, go during the week.
the_red_sheep is offline  
Old Mar 12th 2014, 2:03 pm
  #6  
BE Forum Addict
 
Boomhauer's Avatar
 
Joined: Dec 2009
Posts: 4,337
Boomhauer has a reputation beyond reputeBoomhauer has a reputation beyond reputeBoomhauer has a reputation beyond reputeBoomhauer has a reputation beyond reputeBoomhauer has a reputation beyond reputeBoomhauer has a reputation beyond reputeBoomhauer has a reputation beyond reputeBoomhauer has a reputation beyond reputeBoomhauer has a reputation beyond reputeBoomhauer has a reputation beyond reputeBoomhauer has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Florida - any tips?

Originally Posted by shiva View Post
dont knock on any strange doors when pissed
And try not be be Black.
Boomhauer is online now  
Old Mar 12th 2014, 3:15 pm
  #7  
Bob
SUPER MODERATOR
 
Bob's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2004
Location: MA, USA
Posts: 91,487
Bob has a reputation beyond reputeBob has a reputation beyond reputeBob has a reputation beyond reputeBob has a reputation beyond reputeBob has a reputation beyond reputeBob has a reputation beyond reputeBob has a reputation beyond reputeBob has a reputation beyond reputeBob has a reputation beyond reputeBob has a reputation beyond reputeBob has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Florida - any tips?

Odd concept, of asking in the US forums...usually loads of thread on Florida and things to do that don't involve the mouse.
Bob is offline  
Old Mar 12th 2014, 4:08 pm
  #8  
BE Forum Addict
Thread Starter
 
flares's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2009
Posts: 2,968
flares has a reputation beyond reputeflares has a reputation beyond reputeflares has a reputation beyond reputeflares has a reputation beyond reputeflares has a reputation beyond reputeflares has a reputation beyond reputeflares has a reputation beyond reputeflares has a reputation beyond reputeflares has a reputation beyond reputeflares has a reputation beyond reputeflares has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Florida - any tips?

Originally Posted by Bob View Post
Odd concept, of asking in the US forums...usually loads of thread on Florida and things to do that don't involve the mouse.
if you want advice you ask your mates...not someone you don't know...erm virtually speaking of course
flares is offline  
Old Mar 12th 2014, 4:48 pm
  #9  
Millhouse is not a meme
 
Millhouse's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2009
Location: Disneyland, Dubai
Posts: 14,630
Millhouse has a reputation beyond reputeMillhouse has a reputation beyond reputeMillhouse has a reputation beyond reputeMillhouse has a reputation beyond reputeMillhouse has a reputation beyond reputeMillhouse has a reputation beyond reputeMillhouse has a reputation beyond reputeMillhouse has a reputation beyond reputeMillhouse has a reputation beyond reputeMillhouse has a reputation beyond reputeMillhouse has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Florida - any tips?

Don't go to the Kennedy Space Station - I have stronger memories of how bored I was at that place than I do of how much fun Disney was.
Millhouse is offline  
Old Mar 12th 2014, 8:14 pm
  #10  
Soupy twist
 
Joined: Dec 2004
Posts: 2,267
Eeyore has a reputation beyond reputeEeyore has a reputation beyond reputeEeyore has a reputation beyond reputeEeyore has a reputation beyond reputeEeyore has a reputation beyond reputeEeyore has a reputation beyond reputeEeyore has a reputation beyond reputeEeyore has a reputation beyond reputeEeyore has a reputation beyond reputeEeyore has a reputation beyond reputeEeyore has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Florida - any tips?

Originally Posted by mikewot View Post
Best tip, get there at opening time (usually 9) and start at the back, then move to the front
Depending on the time of year, opening at the Disney parks can be as early as 7am. Generally speaking, the more crowded they expect the parks to be on any given day, the earlier they open.

If you can possibly avoid it, don't go during the summer or any other major school holiday times. The parks can end up more packed than you can imagine, with multi-hour wait times on all the popular rides.

Summer is also when Florida gets the most rain and humidity. It's subtropical, and you can rely on torrential thunderstorms in the afternoon most days, but they usually don't last all that long, although they obviously make the humidity worse for the rest of the day. The best time to visit is winter through spring, but avoiding Christmas, which is the single busiest time of year for the theme parks.

If you can't avoid going during a popular holiday period, then you really need to check out touring plans. They probably sound like ridiculous overkill if you've never been before, but just one day stuck in endless queues in an overcrowded, sweltering theme park will make you change your mind

If you follow a touring plan (a good website is here), you can visit the parks on even the busiest days and go on all the big rides with minimal hassles. The downside is that you really do need to be disciplined and get there early, 6am early if that's what the plan says for that time of year. If you want a truly relaxed Florida theme park experience while still going on all the rides, you just have to go at a quiet time of year.
Eeyore is offline  
Old Mar 13th 2014, 1:49 am
  #11  
BE Forum Addict
Thread Starter
 
flares's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2009
Posts: 2,968
flares has a reputation beyond reputeflares has a reputation beyond reputeflares has a reputation beyond reputeflares has a reputation beyond reputeflares has a reputation beyond reputeflares has a reputation beyond reputeflares has a reputation beyond reputeflares has a reputation beyond reputeflares has a reputation beyond reputeflares has a reputation beyond reputeflares has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Florida - any tips?

Originally Posted by Eeyore View Post
Depending on the time of year, opening at the Disney parks can be as early as 7am. Generally speaking, the more crowded they expect the parks to be on any given day, the earlier they open.

If you can possibly avoid it, don't go during the summer or any other major school holiday times. The parks can end up more packed than you can imagine, with multi-hour wait times on all the popular rides.

Summer is also when Florida gets the most rain and humidity. It's subtropical, and you can rely on torrential thunderstorms in the afternoon most days, but they usually don't last all that long, although they obviously make the humidity worse for the rest of the day. The best time to visit is winter through spring, but avoiding Christmas, which is the single busiest time of year for the theme parks.

If you can't avoid going during a popular holiday period, then you really need to check out touring plans. They probably sound like ridiculous overkill if you've never been before, but just one day stuck in endless queues in an overcrowded, sweltering theme park will make you change your mind

If you follow a touring plan (a good website is here), you can visit the parks on even the busiest days and go on all the big rides with minimal hassles. The downside is that you really do need to be disciplined and get there early, 6am early if that's what the plan says for that time of year. If you want a truly relaxed Florida theme park experience while still going on all the rides, you just have to go at a quiet time of year.
wow thanks Eeyore. Looks like a fair amount of planning is required for such a trip!!
flares is offline  
Old Mar 13th 2014, 6:17 am
  #12  
Soupy twist
 
Joined: Dec 2004
Posts: 2,267
Eeyore has a reputation beyond reputeEeyore has a reputation beyond reputeEeyore has a reputation beyond reputeEeyore has a reputation beyond reputeEeyore has a reputation beyond reputeEeyore has a reputation beyond reputeEeyore has a reputation beyond reputeEeyore has a reputation beyond reputeEeyore has a reputation beyond reputeEeyore has a reputation beyond reputeEeyore has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Florida - any tips?

Unfortunately yes, especially if you've got kids who are of an age where queueing for 2-3 hours for one ride isn't really going to fly

We've been many times, but always before we had kids, so we could always plan to go at the best time of year for minimum crowds and best weather. We've never had to use a touring plan, but we absolutely will next time we go, because it'll almost inevitably be during a school holiday period.

We've had friends go at Christmas with no intention to use touring plans and an "Oh come on, it'll be fine" attitude... they came back with thousand-yard stares
Eeyore is offline  
Old Mar 13th 2014, 7:01 am
  #13  
WWLLCJD?
 
Scamp's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2011
Location: Dubai
Posts: 21,629
Scamp has a reputation beyond reputeScamp has a reputation beyond reputeScamp has a reputation beyond reputeScamp has a reputation beyond reputeScamp has a reputation beyond reputeScamp has a reputation beyond reputeScamp has a reputation beyond reputeScamp has a reputation beyond reputeScamp has a reputation beyond reputeScamp has a reputation beyond reputeScamp has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Florida - any tips?

Originally Posted by Eeyore View Post
Unfortunately yes, especially if you've got kids who are of an age where queueing for 2-3 hours for one ride isn't really going to fly
My Dad threw a coke can at a guy who pushed in once (in France). What made the whole thing worse was he got a round of applause when the guy stopped arguing, calmed down and left.

All of this just so I could get to the front of Space Mountain queue and bottle it. (I've always hated rollercoasters). He wasn't happy.
Scamp is offline  
Old Mar 13th 2014, 7:46 pm
  #14  
Forum Regular
 
Joined: Jan 2014
Location: Doha now...
Posts: 137
Venezuelan007 is an unknown quantity at this point
Default Re: Florida - any tips?

Avoid july-august... Or youll see your life scape through your fingers while queuing the eternal lines in theme parks.

2nd half of september will be fine. If u go by then or later, youll get to ride whatever u want, all the times u want (still talking about theme park attractions). Dont waste your money on any kind of fast pass.

Depending on the age and gender of the kids u decide which parks to go. If they are under 8 then disney, magic kindgdom and stuff. Over 8, girls still enjoy magic kingdom, boys will definitly enjoy adventure island more. If u are into sea world kind of stuff, definetly should go, also bush gardens is a big zoo/safari, besides the rollercoasters.

I didnt enjoy cape canaveral either, but its a matter of interests.

Stay on kissimee, rent a car (even if its going to be parked all day long while you are in the park), 4hours on I95 and voila! (No need of paying tolls on turnpike). Dont let the car rental scam u (i think its sort of international code). Everything is FAR, no good public transportation or cheap taxis there. Shop in the outlets in kissimee for good deals, shop in miami for brand stuff.

A couple of days in miami beach dont hurt (maybe the wallet)
Venezuelan007 is offline  
Old Mar 13th 2014, 8:12 pm
  #15  
Soupy twist
 
Joined: Dec 2004
Posts: 2,267
Eeyore has a reputation beyond reputeEeyore has a reputation beyond reputeEeyore has a reputation beyond reputeEeyore has a reputation beyond reputeEeyore has a reputation beyond reputeEeyore has a reputation beyond reputeEeyore has a reputation beyond reputeEeyore has a reputation beyond reputeEeyore has a reputation beyond reputeEeyore has a reputation beyond reputeEeyore has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Florida - any tips?

Originally Posted by Venezuelan007 View Post
Avoid july-august... Or youll see your life scape through your fingers while queuing the eternal lines in theme parks
If you're using a touring plan and you follow it to the letter, you can visit the parks on the busiest days and still go on all the rides you want without excessive queueing. The downside is that you won't have a relaxing day and you'll start bloody early. But needs must.

Dont waste your money on any kind of fast pass
Props to Disney. Their Fastpass doesn't cost anything extra on top of your admission fee.

You're right that car hire is essential, but then that holds true everywhere in America apart from places like New York. We've never been scammed by car rental in Florida (or anywhere else in the States). They obviously try and upsell you at the counter, but we just stick to what we've booked.

If you stay in the Kissimmee area then Disney, Universal and Sea World are pretty close by. Only Busch Gardens and the Kennedy Space Center at Cape Canaveral (which is fantastic) are any appreciable distance (each about an hour away).

Last edited by Eeyore; Mar 13th 2014 at 8:24 pm.
Eeyore is offline  

Contact Us Archive Advertising Cookie Policy Privacy Statement Terms of Service

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.