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Robert Niles
Editor

Paper or Plastic? Universal Orlando Passholders Know What They Want

Published: September 2, 2015 at 3:25 PM

Universal Orlando Resort this week set up a Facebook group for its annual passholders. Universal pitched the group as an opportunity to connect with other passholders and get news from the resort.

Universal Studios Florida

Well, one day in and Universal's passholders are connecting, all right. And they're rallying around one message: "We want plastic annual pass cards!" — not the current paper ones. Here are a few of the comments:

You pay several hundred dollars for a year long pass that you're expected to present for purchases and express pass, and they give you the cheapest piece of paper ever. Step it up UO! Even a laminated pass would be better.

My $60 six flags season pass came on a plastic card...but my $480 universal season pass comes on a pice of paper?

What do we want? PLASTIC PASSES. When do we want it? Anytime it's convenient, really.

I haven't been a Universal Orlando passholder since Universal Studios Florida's first year, but my pass back then was plastic. Here in California, Universal Studios Hollywood also distributes paper APs (at least to the "buy-a-day, get-the-year" passholders), which simply don't hold up as well in the wallet as Disneyland's plastic AP cards.

Of course, there's a third alternative — an annual pass that doesn't require a card. Whether it's on a MagicBand or a smartphone app, electronic annual passes provide another way for loyal visitors to get into the parks. Now, if only Disneyland's smartphone app allowed AP holders to get their discounts and Fastpasses without having to bring their card into the park, too.

Perhaps Universal could take this up a step and program interactive Wizarding World of Harry Potter wands to function as an annual pass, inspired by the scene in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows where a Gringotts goblin accepts Bellatrix's wand as a form of identification. Now that would be cool!

What's the most convenient form of an annual pass for you?

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