All of the trams have to be unloaded and guest free before the park closes for the evening at the usual 6pm. Since the Studio Tour takes about 1hr (if not longer) any trams departing after 4:15 runs the risk of being in the back lot after closing time. Also, much of the back lot and the Studio Tour itself has poor to no lighting so a tour at dusk would be limited and not worth it.
And in fact, as of late 2008 about the time the economy really hit bottom, Universal has been closing as early as 5 P.M., with the last tram leaving at 3:15, rather than 4:15.
Also, just so you know, the trams don't technically stop "preciselly at 4:15". The advertise that the "Last Tram departs at 4:15"(or 3:15), when in fact, trams will continue running for another half hour or so, with the last tram actually leaving at about 4:45.
As a rule, the advertised last tram time is always 1 hour and 45 minutes before park closing, or 6:15, whichever is earlier.
Also, I happen to know that they are expecting a VERY crazy summer, with the main focus being on the tour, and "Kong", so, well, no last tram at 4:15 this summer!
I definitely think they should run the trams a lot later this summer for Kong. In fact, even if they stop going around the whole backlot after dusk, they should still drive down to Kong so people get the chance to see it throughout park hours, just to be nice.
I think they should keep the park open much later this Summer. If they want to close the lower lot early, that is fine, but they should keep the Upper Lot and Tram Tour open until at least 9pm throughout the Summer.
Whaaaaa? Why close the lower lot early? That's where The Mummy is!!! Granted, I don't think many people will ride JP at night but if they sit in the back, they will be on a wet-less ride which is very fun. The ride has a different, creepy atmosphere at night and the car sliding down the wall is really cool because sparks fly up (something you don't see during the day). Plus, people still ride it during HHN, so I see why not. Closing the lower lot at 8:30 seems like a good time to me (unless of course, that is what you meant by early)
To answer that, simply, the Studio Tour. Many people think it's worth the price of admission. I'd say it's a good value of maybe $30 - 40. It's an hour long ride, with mini rides built in. Aren't most studio tours about that much? Plus all of the stunt shows and rides as well, I'd say under $60 is a good price range for the park, although I do think it should be a tad bit less as well.
I was there the week after Christmas last year, and I was lucky enough to ride the Studio Tour after dark. It was pretty cool! The park closed at 9 and our tour left at approx. 6 in the evening. I really wish they could extend park hours.
- Adventure Is Waiting -
"We're going to take you out of this world of reality for a visit to the most fantastic of all the worlds of fantasy." - Walt Disney
For those who think that they should keep the park/tour open later than usual this Summer, trust me, I know from reliable sources: they will be extending the hours. Right now, the official operating calendar shows them open 9 to 8 in July, but that will be the bare minimum. They may be opening as early as 8, or earlier. They may remain open until 10.
We'll Im sure people would be cool with 30 min tours if they just took people to see the New Kong and New "New York Sets"
This summer. After 4:15 since most people have seen the other sets like a million times, seeing the new Kong effects and the New Sets should make many AP's happy who have seen the tours 1000 times plus most people going this summer will want to see Kong more than once in a day but not have to sit through Jaws and the earthquake sound stages...again.