TouringPlans is pleased to welcome back guest author Jon Self.
The attractions at Universal Orlando can be very thrilling. There are thrilling roller coasters like VelociCoaster. There are incredible dark rides like SpiderMan and Forbidden Journey. There are classic-style spinning rides like Storm Force Accelatron. There are well-themed 3-D simulator attractions like Simpsons attraction.
If you are someone who can experience motion sickness, then that paragraph may seem intimidating. Motion sickness is a common ailment caused by disorientation of the sense of balance/equilibrium usually caused by repeated motions such as movements in a car, a turbulent plane, or rapid spinning. Motion sickness can be displayed in unpleasant symptoms like nausea, vertigo, intense sweating, general feeling of discomfort, and vomiting. Generally, when the disorientation stops, the feeling subsides but, in some cases, it can last a few days.
If that sounds like a bad theme park day for you, then you are not alone. There is something about the human condition that causes us to desire thrills. What if you are thrill seeker but may experience motion sickness? First, consult a physician. You should never take the word of part-time blogger over a doctor.
Having said that, here are some common suggestions from Universal Orlando veterans of easy to purchase options you can try to alleviate motion sickness. You may find that using some of these in combination will help based on other’s experiences:
- Seabands: These are acupuncture type wrist bands. For some guests, these are magical.
- Medicine to Take: The most common options are Bonine and Dramamine. These are pills you would take in preparation for potential motion sickness experience. Many guests that suffer motion sickness praise these.
- Other Options: Some guests claim great value in queasy drops/pops, ginger supplements, and peppermint oils.
Based on your situation, you may want to consider a doctor prescribed option, such as a Scopalamine patch. This is worn behind your ear so this is more of commitment. However, people who commonly face motion sickness at Universal Orlando without it, enjoy their time far more with it.
If you are going to be trying a new-to-you attraction and are concerned about motion sickness, then there are some broad recommendations:
- Make sure you do not ride on an empty or full stomach. I realize with all the incredible food options at Universal Orlando this will be a tough balance. However, this recommendation could make a ride thrilling without sickness later.
- As obvious as this sounds, wear comfortable clothes especially around your stomach. With the pressure of ride restraints added to tight clothes, this could be a recipe for a disaster.
- Bring some antacid tablets with you. These should not take up much space and you might really need one after a trip with Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey.
- Stay hydrated. The Florida sunshine can cause anyone to feel weak even before potential motion sickness. Also, unless you have a carbonated beverage addiction like me, try to limit your carbonated soft drinks to a normal daily amount as opposed to a theme park amount.
A Universal Orlando vacation can be enjoyed even if you tend to experience motion sickness. You probably will want to practice some of these methods in advance to see how your body reacts before all the excitement of Universal Orlando. You will want to consider what specifically causes your motion sickness. You may be fine on the wildest roller coaster but cannot handle a basic spinning ride. In contrast, you may sometimes get sick riding in cars or planes. If that is true, then the simulator attractions with screens may cause you to think twice.
Whatever your concern about motion sickness, you may want to work your way through less thrilling attractions before attempting the more thrilling attractions Universal Orlando has to offer. The most common attractions to cause varying degrees of motion sickness are:
- Bourne Stuntacular
- Jurassic World VelociCoaster
- Incredible Hulk Coaster
- Storm Force Accelatron
- Skull Island: Reign of Kong
- Race Through New York with Jimmy Fallon
- Despicable Me Minion Mayhem
- Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts
- Amazing Adventure of SpiderMan
- Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit
- Revenge of the Mummy
- Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure
In fairness, apart from the two attractions that go backwards briefly, most Universal Orlando veterans that experience motion sickness, do not experience it often on those attractions. If you are vulnerable to rapid spinning, then the Men in Black attraction and Cat in the Hat attraction may upset your stomach, so add them to your list.
However, the two scariest attractions for people who get motion sick are Simpsons attraction and Forbidden Journey attraction. The Simpsons attraction gets the most votes for causing sickness. The combination of simulator technology, a rough ride, and the fact that the simulator is exaggerating the thrills of a roller coaster leads to this issue. If you feel any type of motion sickness and suggested treatments do not make you feel confident, please skip this attraction.
Your last decision regarding attractions is Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey. This is a world-class attraction, but it records the most incidents of guests getting sick. This attraction is a wonderful mix of screen-based elements and practical sets. Guests claim the screens are the toughest part regarding motion sickness, but the advanced ride vehicle system clearly adds to the thrills and potential sickness. Even if you decide not ride this attraction, you should experience the queue since it takes you inside Hogwarts castle.
Universal Orlando is an incredible resort, but you may need to plan wisely if you are vulnerable to motion sickness. Your days at Universal Orlando will not be ruined if you must skip a few attractions. Enjoy yourself in your time away from the real world.
Do you suffer from motion sickness? What has been your experience with attractions at Universal Orlando? Let us know in the comments.
Jon Self is an avid theme park fan who has the high privilege to serve as a pastor at an American Baptist Church (fbcmacomb.com) while also trying to find the proper life path with his loving spouse, a bigger theme park fan than Jon. You can follow him at @pastorjonself on Twitter and read more of his writings at faithelement.net.