The full effects of Hurricane Ian will not be known for some time. However, Ian rendered all major operations in Orlando area helpless for September 28th and 29th. Following the example of other places, Universal Orlando announced a phased reopening of their resort for September 30th. At least at first, this phased reopening will only involve resort hotel guests. At this point, we do not have exact details for operation procedures though even for resort hotel guests. As of early morning, September 30th, we learned that a few restaurants in CityWalk area would open around noon on the 30th.
Universal Orlando did send some information out about this via social media and emails. They said: “We continue to conduct assessment and recovery efforts across our entire destination with the safety of our guests and team members being our top priority. We expect to begin a phased reopen of portions of our destination for Universal Orlando Resort hotel guests only beginning Friday, Sept. 30.
At this point, Universal Orlando appears unable to commit to a set plan. Based on flooding seen on their property and around their property, the cleanup could take way longer than normally expected. Universal Orlando also said “We look forward to sharing additional operational updates regarding our reopen, including updates around Halloween Horror Nights and when our destination will be available to all guests. These updates will be shared as soon as possible on our website, social media and via email.”
Probably based on intense demand on Team Members currently in these conditions, Universal Orlando suggested the best method of adjusting plans if needed due to Hurricane aftermath. They wrote:
“Our Guest Contact Center is experiencing high call volume and wait times. The easiest way to modify or cancel your Universal Orlando travel plans, including theme park tickets and Halloween Horror Nights event tickets, is to email email@example.com. A Team Member will respond as soon as possible.” In addition, they reminded guests that travel plans booked directly with Universal Orlando for Friday, Sept. 30 can be altered without any cancellation or change fees imposed. If you reschedule your tickets to a higher-priced date, you will be required to pay the difference in price.
Based on reports I have received from Universal Orlando Resort property, a full reopening for September 30th looks in doubt. For those of you wishing to attend Halloween Horror Nights that evening, you, sadly, will need to wait for more updates. In fairness to Universal Orlando, the hurricane damage may restrict activity on property tomorrow for the safety of guests and Team Members alike. If concerned, keep an eye out for Universal Orlando’s social media feed. I will strive to update if I learn anything that pertains to this ever-changing situation.
Of course, we all love theme parks. Yet, the most important thing right now would be the safety of everyone in the area. Many are without power in the area. As mentioned, flooding concerns still exist for many people. I wish everyone working hard at Universal Orlando best wishes through this challenging event.
Pirates & Princesses (PNP) is an independent, opinionated fan-powered news blog that covers Disney and Universal Theme Parks, Themed Entertainment and related Pop Culture from a consumer's point of view. Opinions expressed by our contributors do not necessarily reflect the views of PNP, its editors, affiliates, sponsors or advertisers. PNP is an unofficial news source and has no connection to The Walt Disney Company, NBCUniversal or any other company that we may cover.