Theme Park tickets are not cheap, and Universal Orlando is no different. However, it pays to shop around and consider your options carefully. We explore your options when purchasing Universal Orlando Tickets. Our guide covers Universal Studios Florida, Islands of Adventure & Volcano Bay.
What Universal Orlando Tickets can you buy?
Tickets to Universal Orlando Resort can be a little confusing as there are several options and combinations:
- Single Park Ticket allows admission to one park only a day.
- Park to Park Ticket allows you to park hop during your visit. Importantly this allows you to ride the Hogwarts Express between Universal Studios & Islands of Adventure.
- Two Park Ticket These tickets are for admission to either Islands of Adventure or Universal Studios. Single Park Tickets and Park-to-Park Tickets are available with this option. If you choose a single park, you can only visit one park daily and not ride the Hogwarts Express.
- Three Park Ticket, in addition, allows admission to Volcano Bay.
- Halloween Horror Nights require an additional ticket.
- Florida Resident Tickets there are reductions available for Florida Residents. However, these tickets do have
blackoutdates during peak periods.
- International Tickets are
speciallypriced tickets available for some global markets, noticeably the United Kingdom. On occasion, US residents might be able to purchase these tickets via brokers. However, check the terms carefully before purchasing.
- Annual Pass: If you plan a long visit to Universal Orlando or visit twice during the year, an annual pass can work out cheaper.
Do I need a Park to Park ticket?
If you have never visited Universal Orlando before, we think the answer is probably yes. While a single-park ticket works out a little cheaper, you cannot ride the Hogwarts Express.
The Hogwarts Express takes you from Universal Studios to Islands of Aventure and vice versa. The ride is unique, and each direction offers a different experience. While it does add to your day’s cost, we recommend most guests purchase it.
Should I buy a 3 Park Ticket?
This depends on whether you want to visit Volcano Bay, Universal Orlando’s Water Park. However, promotions often include a free upgrade to a 3 Park Ticket.
Should I buy it before I visit?
Tickets for Universal Orlando always work out cheaper before you visit. In addition, ticket booth lines at the resort can have very long waits.
Make sure you get an actual ticket.
A few vendors still sell vouchers that have to be exchanged for a physical ticket upon arrival at Universal Orlando. If the agent goes out of business, there is a risk you will lose your money, plus you will have to join the ticket booth lines on arrival to exchange your voucher.
Make sure any ticket you purchase is able to be printed at home, a mobile ticket, or a physical ticket.
How many days should my ticket be for?
This depends on how many days you plan to visit Universal Orlando. For most first-time visitors, we recommend visiting for at least three days.
Tickets do work out cheaper the more days you visit.
How long is my ticket valid?
Most tickets are valid for seven consecutive days, including the first day of use.
Are International Tickets always cheaper?
International tickets, especially the United Kingdom’s 3 Park Explorer Ticket, can work out great value. The ticket includes 14 consecutive days of park-to-park access to all 3 Universal Parks.
However, if you are only planning a short visit or planning to visit on consecutive days, US tickets often work out cheaper. When writing this blog, I can buy a 5-day park-to-park from a well-known US vendor cheaper than a UK 14-day ticket. However, if I add Volcano Bay, the UK ticket is cheaper.
Choose your tickets carefully and shop around!
Like many theme parks, Universal has a system for priority boarding of attractions. At Universal Orlando, the system is called Express Pass and comes at an additional cost.
Express Pass is not cheap, and deciding whether to buy it can be difficult. At quieter times of the year, it is usually not essential, but there are definite benefits during peak periods.
You can learn more in our Guide to Universal Express Pass.
Where to purchase your Universal Orlando Tickets
We are reluctant to recommend a ticket vendor on Modern Life is Good. The safest place to buy is always the Universal Orlando website, but it can be slightly more expensive. However, we recommend always starting your research on the official site.
Several reputable retailers offer small discounts on Universal Orlando Tickets. Retailers differ by country, and you should carefully check online reviews before buying.
Always use your credit card to get additional purchase protection when purchasing tickets.
Where Not to Purchase Universal Orlando Tickets
Unfortunately, there are several mistakes guests can make if they are looking for a bargain. In our opinion, you should avoid purchasing the following:
- Never buy second-hand tickets. It is impossible to know whether the advertised unused days are correct, plus Universal scans guests’ fingers prior to admission. All tickets are untransferable and it is highly likely that your tickets will be useless.
- Don’t buy off eBay or from other sites offering extremely cheap tickets. There is a good chance they will be a con.
- If a deal seems too good to be true, it probably isn’t genuine. Timeshare companies often offer cheap tickets, but be careful before taking any offers!
Our Guide to Universal Orlando Resort has information on all the attractions available at Universal Orlando Resort. We have useful information, tips, hacks & tricks to plan your vacation.