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jarmor

The VIP Experience...is it worth it?

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Hey guys! Coming back for my second year. I could never have planned such a successful trip last year without the help of you professionals at this site so I have to come back and say thanks and extend my hand again for help!

I want to go bigger and better this year so I am considering the VIP experience. While it is costly I would like to know what you guys think about it. Have you done one? If so share your experiences. Share your pictures, share your video. Im sure im not the only one curious about it so help myself and others make that final decision.

Thanks in advance...

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The one time we went to this event, we did the VIP. I, personally, thought it was worth it The access to the lounge was a huge bonus because the night we went, it was so crowded, it was overwhelming, and the lounge let us breathe a bit. Also, the fact that you get UNLIMITED FOL nails that deal for me. I just bought our VIP tix last night for use on Opening Night, and I cannot wait.

Also, if you're like us, and not familiar with the park, it's a good way to get through it all with a guide, and you can at least find some things on your own again later. Since they don't serve alcohol like they do in Orlando, you won't have to worry about being paired up with a bunch of drunken assholes in your tour group. Consider that a HUGE blessing. We did the RIP Tour in Orlando once.. ONCE. I'll never do it again because the people in our group kept wanting to stop for beer and they were just obnoxious. I don't travel with people like that, and I sure as hell don't want to spend money to hang with people like that. Anyway, rant over - it's irrelevant in Hollywood.

If you have specific questions, I'll try to remember what I can about our tour.

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Maybe its just me cuz I'm a cheap ass, but no special treatment is worth $200. The highest I can see the value in that is maybe $150 and that's IF it came with a day/night combo. But hey, that's just me and that's probably only because: I've done it nearly a dozen times myself and have done everything, don't mind waiting in lines, don't feel the need for that many repeats, buy cheap food in the first place so it wouldn't amount to that much, don't drink alcohol, and I feel special treatment in the first place is weird. I don't know, I just always feel uncomfortable when being treated highly.

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I have done VIP since 2011 and each year is fairly different with 2013 being the best VIP experience. Every year the tour had progressively more scares. Expect VIP tour this year to be basically a nighttime version of the studio tour with two stops at Terror Tram and the 3 backlot mazes. Also when considering VIP remember the unlimited FOL basically gives you free reign over HHN.

Last year when we did VIP we used the small VIP trolley to get around and the tour guide said we can split up with the group to do our own thing or stay with them after we finished the backlot mazes.

I'll give you a run down of each years VIP so you know what to expect

2011: We met at the VIP lounge for the 700 tour and we drove on a single tram. Drove through the metropolitan sets and it was almost pitch black. I expected some scares but there weren't any. After that we got the story of La Llorona at the flash flood area and the flash flood went off. After that they dropped us off at 6 points texas with no street lights on (but you do get a flashlight). It was pretty creepy walking through six points texas while the tour guide was telling some scary stories that happened in the Backlot and sing your dim flashlight into the dark saloons. There were no scareactors (just like the tour guide said) so it was basically "left up to interpretation". After we walked about 5 mins or so the guide picked us up and they drove to Terror Tram and the VIP tour was over. The VIP "Vampire" lounge in 2011 was at the Parisian Square and it was a full buffet or anything but it had tasty snacks (and free refreshments). The best part of the lounge in 2011 was the Vampire woman stuck in the glass cage with rats. Overall a cool tour but felt like it was missing something.

2012: We got to HHN early so we got a 645 meetup. They gave a new video saying they were giving us a guide on the backlot exclusively for VIP and will be for the Universal 100th aniversary. Got into the single Tram and headed off to do a lot of what we did in 2011 (flash flood, ghost stories). They dropped us off at Old Mexico. We walked to Amity and we followed the tour guide while she was telling ghost stories. They you hear it *bang* at the door 20 ft away from you. Kinda creepy at first. *BANG* Again! It just started getting repetitive and lame. After that we did Terror Tram and the VIP tour was over. Lounge was moved to a new location and wasn't as good as 2011.

2013: This was the best year for the VIP tour. We got a 710 tour time so we hung at the VIP lounge till then and we got to see the opening scaremonies from the second floor balcony. That was really cool watching. The tour guide said we have to follow her through the Purge Scarezones all the way to the Terror Tram loading area. We walked to the loading area and got into the trolley and started the tour. The tour guide told the story about the old "lady" from Insidious and set the tone for the tour a little bit. We stopped by Amity where we were going to watch a paranormal investigation first hand. We were stopped by investigators and they gave the card you get saying the password at the Insidious maze. It says something on the back under a blacklight but I forgot what it says. They take us in front of a building and a projection show goes off with Darth Maul climbing on the side of the building. Then the Old Lady jumps out and we GTFO there. While we were fast walking away multiple Old ladys and bushman came out of nowhere. It was a lot more scareactors than the VIP video on youtube. Probably one of my most scary HHN experiences. Anyways we get on the tour and they take us to the backlot mazes and then the Terror Tram and it's over. The lounge was a lot better with more food choices than 2011/2012.

So there are my experiences for each year of VIP starting at 2011. This year they are doing an exclusive Scarezones (where?) and having a DJ (why?) and a buffet like last year. I expect this year's VIP to be a hybrid if 2011 and 2013's tour. 2011 type tour with 2013 lounge and backlot mazes.

Is it worth it? I'd say yes. To me it's the definitive way to experience HHN Hollywood and you won't regret it.

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In my opinion, VIP is definately worth it. Even if you do it one year to compare with the other admission tiers. My experience would replicate Universal Studios Geek (even used VIP the same years). Just a few things to add to the conversation:

1. Get there as early as possible. Not that you will encounter lines, but your tour time is usually based on when you check in. We arrived about an hour later than usual last year and ended up with a 1015pm tour time. This basically cuts your night in half and you are left to try to eat and get some things out of the way prior to returning to the lounge for your tour. It is best to get an early tour time which would then leave you with about 3-4 hours of non-stop mazes, rides, the lounge, or just enjoying the ambience.

2. The VIP backlot experience was awesome last year and was an interactive scarezone/attraction hybrid. In 2011, we were brought to the (BTTF) Clock tower/town square just to explore the set. No fanfare, but awesome nonetheless. 2012 was the only dud with cheezy, amateur scares as we walked through Amity.

3. VIP is not meant for you to fly through the event in record time. It allows for a structured way to enjoy HHN. For the escorted part of the tour, you are at the mercy of the guide and people in your party. We were delayed for quite awhile while a guest went to tinkle in/close to the Munsters house and the tour was changed midway through the event due to Terror Tram closing early.

Overall, I give VIP a thumbs up for the valet parking, unlimited lounge visits and food, ability to enjoy some of the scenery and repeat visits of your favorite mazes.

Edited by AsylumSB
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The only thing i think is cool about the VIP is the unlimited FOL....which regular FOL doesn't have which is B.S.. And MMMMAAAYYYYBBBEEEEE the special backlot tour but i hear it is not that great. The past couple years i did FOL and paid for drinks food and shirts and probably spent less for HHN altogether with FOL than with VIP. I still would have a fun time but the whole "you can only use the FOL once at each attraction" is pretty lame for the price you pay.

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I think VIP is worth it. I want to do all of the mazes multiple times. Except for Face Off. But the lines do get long and the unlimited FOL helps a ton if you want to do everything multiple times. The VIP backlot tour was as said above, amazing for last year, but 2012 sucked. So it can go either way. The buffet is a huge plus because you have unlimited FOL so can easily do everything and eat. I'm personally sacrificing bringing a friend this year to do VIP for September 20th. If I did bring a friend we would do GA and with mazes like AWIL and AVP there's no way we could get through everything because we love the scaramonies. So all in all VIP is worth it if you can afford it.

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I think VIP is worth it. Obviously unlimited FOL is the main reason to do this, but I though the lounge last year was a nice place to rest and had good food, so I think the lounge has some value in your purchase, while I though the backlot tour was cool, it was almost ruined by this group of 12-14 people who were all drunk and kept talking over the poor tour guide, so that can be an issue, but I thought the overall experience was nice and not worrying about doing every maze and just going through horror nights chill makes this totally worth it.

Also I got to the park an hour late when I did VIP, if I show up before the event starts, will they give me a tour that starts before the event like Universal Studios Geek at 6:45

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I think it’s worth it based on two factors: 1) you’re debating between FOL or VIP – as in GA is not even a consideration, and 2) you go on a date where VIP costs $209.

If you meet the above criteria, then the difference in price between FOL and VIP is $90. Let’s discuss how to justify the additional $90 upcharge.

To park your car, you have to spend $20; this is covered by VIP so the upcharge now comes to $70. Dinner is also covered with VIP; let’s be conservative and say you spend 10 bucks on dinner, well at this point the upcharge for VIP is reduced to $60. If you're a drinking man then two free drinks at a highly conservative pricepoint for Hollywood would be 7 bucks a drink. This reduces the upcharge to 46 bucks. Now you have to ask yourself: is $46 an amount you're willing to spend for VIP privileges that are difficult to appraise? Essentially, is unlimited FOL for everything worth $46 to you?

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It will be interesting to see how Universal will check you in upon arrival; the VIP ticket states guests will be assigned a dinner time. Not that it was a make or break type of thing, but I loved how in the past three years, you were given the freedom to return to the lounge throughout the night for food and drinks. I wonder if they will limit this.

Edited by AsylumSB

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Looks like I will be getting the VIP option. I don't get to experience HHN Hollywood as much as I do HHN Orlando so it seems its my better option. Thanks guys...

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October 11th! WIll be ringing in my birthday, october 12th, hopefully getting the crap scared out of me!

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Bump for a good question! Also, I'm wondering if you can skip doing the backlot part of the VIP experience? Seems kinda lame, and a time waster to me. If I lived more local, maybe I'd be more inclined to take the tour, but I only get to come down maybe one a year from Washington State.

I have been to 2 HHN's (2011, 2012) and both times did the Day/Night pass. The crowds on a Friday or Sat seemed to prove to much with this ticket level option. And for people in their 30's and 40's, waiting in 2hr lines for mazes just isnt't cutting it anymore.

So I am happy that I will be trying out the VIP this year, but want to make the most out of it. My main interests will be: The Mazes, The rides, the "free" parking, and "free" food and drinks.

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Bump for a good question! Also, I'm wondering if you can skip doing the backlot part of the VIP experience? Seems kinda lame, and a time waster to me. If I lived more local, maybe I'd be more inclined to take the tour, but I only get to come down maybe one a year from Washington State.

I have been to 2 HHN's (2011, 2012) and both times did the Day/Night pass. The crowds on a Friday or Sat seemed to prove to much with this ticket level option. And for people in their 30's and 40's, waiting in 2hr lines for mazes just isnt't cutting it anymore.

So I am happy that I will be trying out the VIP this year, but want to make the most out of it. My main interests will be: The Mazes, The rides, the "free" parking, and "free" food and drinks.

You can skip whatever you want. They don't give you a schedule to follow (as far as I know)

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The tour and dinner are scheduled at specific times and only take up part of the night. While you are basically free to do what you want, the tour adds some structure to the night and also allows plenty of free time to repeat mazes, rides, etc.

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Bump for a good question! Also, I'm wondering if you can skip doing the backlot part of the VIP experience? Seems kinda lame, and a time waster to me. If I lived more local, maybe I'd be more inclined to take the tour, but I only get to come down maybe one a year from Washington State.

I have been to 2 HHN's (2011, 2012) and both times did the Day/Night pass. The crowds on a Friday or Sat seemed to prove to much with this ticket level option. And for people in their 30's and 40's, waiting in 2hr lines for mazes just isnt't cutting it anymore.

So I am happy that I will be trying out the VIP this year, but want to make the most out of it. My main interests will be: The Mazes, The rides, the "free" parking, and "free" food and drinks.

The VIP pass is definitely suited for what you want to do.

The parking is valet, so that's a nice perk, but the more people in your group, the less valuable.

The buffet is really good - easily worth $25 if you eat well. A bit hard is getting back in later in the event. They don't really take anything from you, so you could try saying you missed your time window.

Your lanyard may get you a nice discount at the Universal store. In the past it was good for 20% off. It will be at least 10% off these days.

And of course the pass includes admission.

The real value here is the unlimited FOTL pass. Every single maze you use this for will be a walk-on (zero lines for FOTL). Ride lines will actually have a wait.

Definitely go on a packed night to feel like you're getting the best value.

Some years the private Terror Tram makes some cool stops aside from the general backlot (didn't last year), so it can be a nice perk.

One thing about the unlimited FOTL pass - it does NOT have your name or a picture on it. In fact there is NO way to know who in your party is using the lanyard to bypass a line.

I'll leave this comment at that and let you decide how to interpret it...

Edited by zombieman

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Since there's no 2015 thread yet, I'm using this thread for questions. lol

I'm planning on coming over to HHN Hollywood for the first time and am getting the ViP experience. From reading the above entries, the info I gather it:

-show up to the park early, say 6, to get an early time for the experience to maximize time afterwards for rides and mazes.

-You DON'T to also pay for admission, or parking.

- Unlimited FoL, lounge comes with a buffet.

Now, does the FoL work at rides as well, or is it maze exclusive? Also, on the tour do you go through the mazes, or is that exclusive to doing them afterwards with the FoL? And if I were to use the early access and do the backlot mazes before the park opens, then go to the lounge to check in, would I be at risk at getting a really late start time?

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If you have VIP there is no reason to do early access, people only do it to make sure to do everything. And yes VIP covers rides, also they changed it last year to where the tour only does the backlot mazes and the terror tram, so I'm gonna assume they're gonna do the same thing as last year so it's up to you if you want to do the tour or not or get a good time. Also, I wouldn't be so sure about free parking since Universal decided to be assholes and drop free parking from their premium passed

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Since there's no 2015 thread yet, I'm using this thread for questions. lol

I'm planning on coming over to HHN Hollywood for the first time and am getting the ViP experience. From reading the above entries, the info I gather it:

-show up to the park early, say 6, to get an early time for the experience to maximize time afterwards for rides and mazes.

-You DON'T to also pay for admission, or parking.

- Unlimited FoL, lounge comes with a buffet.

Now, does the FoL work at rides as well, or is it maze exclusive? Also, on the tour do you go through the mazes, or is that exclusive to doing them afterwards with the FoL? And if I were to use the early access and do the backlot mazes before the park opens, then go to the lounge to check in, would I be at risk at getting a really late start time?

Okay what VIP differs from a generic FOTL is while the FOTL pass equals to one time a maze and ride VIP grants you unlimited FOTL on everything (and VIP seating to shows if a miracle happens and we get one.) So don't worry about being on time just don't show up at midnight or something lol I would say show up at 6 and just go in at normal opening so you can see the opening Scareamonies. You do not need to the tour last in 2013 the tour had access to the Insidious bonus section on the Terror Tram but last year the bonus was a Exclusive scarezone outside the lounge so unless they offer another thing like the Insidious Encounter I would say the tour is completely optional.

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Thanks for the info guys! Really excited to fly out this event finally, and the VIP Experience sounds pretty much worth it, cuz GA, FOL passes, parking, and food all would probably cost around the same.

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Thanks for the info guys! Really excited to fly out this event finally, and the VIP Experience sounds pretty much worth it, cuz GA, FOL passes, parking, and food all would probably cost around the same.

We have used it since 2011 because visiting from out of state only allows us for a one time shot at HHN. I love being able to repeat mazes to see the different takes on characters during cast changes. And, having another Dream Theater aficionado can only add more class to the event! Hee Hee!

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YAY A DT FAN!! And I'm in the same boat. Going through mazes just once isn't enough to really enjoy the entirety of it. I've noticed details in some houses here in Orlando after over a dozen runs of the same house! Biggest thing with doing houses once though is timing. You could go in a damn near perfect house, but miss every single scare and think it sucks. 

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