During a recent stay at Aventura hotel at Universal Orlando, I was walking though the food court, Urban Pantry. Clearly, I have been writing as a very part time blogger for a while since a basket caught my eye.
Now you may think it was the $28 bottles of wine. Since I do not enjoy alcoholic beverages, that was not it. I do have a diet soda addiction, so the refillable freestyle cups caught my attention.
I took the photo. I then sent it to an “unofficial guiding” expert to see if the pricing system was new. There was a very slight price increase confirmed to me. As you can see, the value in these resort freestyle cup can be found if you stay for an extended amount of time. Once you are staying for 4 or more days, the price is only $18. This is true at both value plus resort hotels, Aventura and Cabana bay Beach Resort. If you enjoy average coffee, tea, theme park level hot cocoa, and/or coke freestyle beverages, this resort cup can be a budget saver.
Before you purchase one of these cups, there are a few things you should consider:
- These will not work at freestyle machines inside the theme park. Those require a different cup.
- These will not work at other Universal Orlando/Loews resort hotels. I did test this out during a September 2021 visit.
- The food court areas are not open late at night. Sometimes, the freestyle machines are turned off during those hours. This means if you are craving a soda at 2am then the machines may not be working. Yes, I tested this at both value plus resort hotels in recent months.
- Just like the in park freestyle cups, there is a minimum amount of time you must wait in between refills. This varies at the resort hotels but expect a 10-minute wait in between refills. This is done to keep people from simply sharing one cup.
- The pricing of freestyle cup program may vary at the Endless Summer resorts and the other resort hotels that offer this service. Policies at Universal Orlando change often.
- At the value and value plus level resort hotels, you can find freestyle machines at the pools also. At Cabana Bay, you can find a freestyle machine at the Galaxy Bowl also.
- At the value plus resort hotels, Universal Orlando annual passholders get a 10% discount on these “Sonic Souvenir” refill cups. This is not true at the other level resort hotels.
The freestyle refill cup program can be an excellent way to budget your vacation money. If you plan on dining in your resort hotel food court often, these cups will save you a noticeable amount of money. Of course, you could decide to just get a $28 bottle of wine at Aventura. The choice is yours.
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.