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Best Time to Visit Universal Orlando in 2018 & 2019

by Leap on March 8, 2018 129 Orlando

Best Time to Visit Universal Orlando in 2018 - Wizarding World - Diagon AlleyThis is what Universal Orlando Resort trip planning sounds like around the frog pond:

"We have to do Forbidden Journey first."

"Are you crazy? Escape from Gringotts!"

"I was thinking of splashing into the pool at Cabana Bay Beach Resort right after we check in."

"If I may add my two croaks, I'd hit Ko'kiri Body Plunge first."

"Whaaaat?"

"It's as if you don't even know us."

Yes. Even us savvy trip planners can get hung up on how to tackle a Universal Orlando vacation. One of the few things we can agree on is WHEN to visit. Crowd levels have a big impact on everyone's theme park vacation. This post outlines the very best times to visit Universal Orlando in 2018 and 2019. It also outlines the more crowded times to visit.

The Best Time to Visit Universal Orlando in 2018 & 2019

As we've said before with visiting Disney World, there's never a bad time to visit Universal Orlando. The Frog Family has hopped down during every season and successfully managed the crowds. We stick with our basic plan — get to the park at opening, take breaks in the afternoon when the parks are at their busiest, make use of our wait-time app and use Universal Express.

Best Time to Visit Universal Orlando 2018 - Loews Portofino Bay Resort

We highly recommend you consider staying on site at one of Universal’s official hotels that offer Universal Express Unlimited, basically unlimited skip-the-line access on most rides at Universal Studios Florida and Universal’s Islands of Adventure. The Universal hotels that offer the benefit are Loews Portofino Bay Hotel, Universal's Hard Rock Hotel and Loews Royal Pacific Resort. For more reading, check out our guide on when to use Universal Express

Having a plan also helps manage crowds, which is why we've put all of our experience into these handy-dandy Universal Orlando park plans. There's no magic to our methods (well ... snacks and caffeine help). Simply follow our advice and you'll find the crowds manageable even during the busy times.

We know that the word "crowds" can conjure up visions of hour-long waits for the popcorn cart. While that's a little extreme, there's no denying that there are better times to visit Universal Orlando than others. It should come as no surprise that the best time to visit Universal Orlando in 2018 and 2019 falls along school schedules. Generally, when the tadpoles will be out of school, there will be crowds at Universal. This is as true for a one-day holiday such as Martin Luther King Day as it is for a week-long spring break or the big draw — summer vacation. We won't judge you for pulling your kids out of school for a vacation (we have done it ourselves), but here are some things to consider.

Determining the Best Time to Visit Universal Orlando in 2018

Before booking your vacation to Universal on our site, we recommend you check our Crowd Calendar. You can get a view of the crowd levels by day, month or the whole year. You'll also find individual park recommendations. So you can easily see at a glance the best time to visit Universal Orlando in 2018.

Special events should also be a consideration in deciding the best time to visit, and they are also displayed on the crowd calendar. For example, Halloween Horror Nights can scare up a good crowd (yes, I went there). You might want to plan your visit around this event if you're into haunts, but be aware that it will bring in others as well.

Best Time to Visit Universal Orlando in 2018 - Universal's Volcano Bay - River

Another consideration is Universal's Volcano Bay. Universal's third theme park has splashed onto the scene, and many visitors are extending their trips to experience it. (Check out our complete guide to Volcano Bay if you're planning to visit.) And, yes, it is open year round.

So When Is the Best Time to Universal Orlando in 2018 & 2019?

The very best times to visit Universal Orlando in 2018 are ...

  • Jan. 8-12, Jan. 17-25
  • Jan. 29- Feb. 15, Feb. 26-March 1
  • Weekdays in May
  • The second half of August
  • Most weekdays in September (minus Fridays with Halloween Horror Nights)
  • Most weekdays in October (minus Fridays with Halloween Horror Nights)
  • Weekdays in November (minus the week of Thanksgiving)
  • Weekdays in December (minus the week of Christmas and New Year's Eve)

The very best times to visit Universal Orlando in 2019 are ...

  • Jan. 7-11, Jan. 23-Feb. 14
  • Feb. 25-March 8
  • The second half of August
  • Most days in September (minus Fridays with Halloween Horror Nights)
  • Most weekdays in October (minus Fridays with Halloween Horror Nights)
  • Weekdays in November (minus the week of Thanksgiving)
  • Weekdays in December (minus the week of Christmas and New Year's Eve)

Historically, September has been the very best of the month of the year to visit Universal Orlando in terms of crowds because the kids have just returned to school. It is still our pick for best month to visit, however, the popularity of Halloween Horror Nights has brought in more crowds, and the event regularly sells out. If you're visiting the resort for that time, and specifically for that event, make sure you purchase your tickets first and book your hotel early. Those weekends could see more guests who come in for the event and spend their daytime hours inside the parks.

Best Time to Visit Universal Orlando in 2018 - Incredible Hulk Coaster

September is also the height of Orlando's rainy season. You should prepare for daily afternoon thunderstorms and possibly more rain than that. Come prepared with ponchos. With those caveats out of the way, we still feel that fall is a good time to visit Universal Orlando.

The Most-Crowded Time to Visit Universal Orlando

The worst times to visit Universal Orlando in 2018 are ...

  • Jan. 1-7, Jan. 12-15
  • Jan. 26-28 (heavier concentration of crowds in the Wizarding Worlds for A Celebration of Harry Potter)
  • Feb. 16-25
  • March 12-April 15
  • Weekends in May
  • June
  • July
  • August until the 12th
  • The week of Thanksgiving
  • The week of Christmas through the week of New Year

The worst times to visit Universal Orlando in 2019 are ...

  • Jan. 1-6, Jan. 17-21
  • Late January, during A Celebration of Harry Potter - Dates TBD
  • Feb. 15-24
  • March 21-April 7, April 20-27 (elevated crowds March 16-April 27)
  • Weekends in May
  • June
  • July
  • The first half of August
  • The week of Thanksgiving
  • The week of Christmas through the week of New Year

Following a successful 2017 event, the 2018 NFL Pro Bowl was again held in Orlando on Jan. 28. While some of the Pro Bowl activities were being held at Disney, it bring more additional people to all of the parks. It also coincided with A Celebration of Harry Potter. Typically during the Pro Bowl, we would expect Saturday to be the busiest theme park day, with the game day being less crowded. It is not certain that the Pro Bowl will return to Orlando for 2019, so for now, we'll just have to wait and see. The annual Celebration also brings additional people to the parks, but generally many are attending the special Q&As with film talent, panels and demonstrations. Expect more crowds in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter in both Diagon Alley and Hogsmeade for all of the Celebration dates.

Best Time to Visit Universal Orlando in 2018 - Universal's Volcano Bay - Atmosphere

Let's hop forward to spring break for a moment. In 2018, Easter falls on April 1 and will likely mean a slightly shorter, but more crowded spring break. Take those crowds into consideration when planning your visit.

Holiday Crowds at Universal Orlando in 2018 and 2019

Holidays bring crowds, and for good reasons. People are off from work and want to enjoy their time in the parks. Many families make it a tradition to gather at Universal Orlando to celebrate everything from Easter to Thanksgiving. Universal Orlando Resort has festive and frightening holiday events.

We've already mentioned the impact of crowds from Halloween Horror Nights. Christmas will be a BIG DEAL at Universal Orlando Resort in the coming years. Muggles and wizards will flock to Christmas In The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, which will bring holiday decorations, entertainment and food—welcome back warm Butterbeer! Universal's Holiday Parade will debut at Universal Studios, and the popular Grinchmas will once again return to Islands of Adventure.

Universal Orlando's Most Crowded Holidays:

  • New Year's Day
  • Easter - April 1, 2018, and April 21, 2019
  • July 4th
  • Thanksgiving - Nov. 22, 2018, and Nov. 28, 2019
  • Christmas
  • New Year's Eve

Best Holidays to Visit Universal Orlando in 2018 and 2019

Stock up on those precious personal days and consider visiting on these less-crowded holidays. It will still be busy, but not as noticeable as Christmas. (Pro Tip: Don't use a sick day for a visit and then post a pic of you enjoying a Lard Lad donut.)

  • Labor Day - Sept. 3, 2018, and Sept. 2, 2019
  • Columbus Day - Oct. 8, 2018, and Oct. 14, 2019
  • Veteran's Day

Now you know the best time to visit Universal Orlando in 2018 and 2019. Wondering how crowds will be during your trip? Check out our Crowd Calendar. You'll find more resources to help you plan your Universal Orlando vacation on our When to Visit Orlando page inside the Orlando Planning Timeline!

Keep hopping!

Keep hopping, Leap!
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1–50 of 65 comments
Apr 16, 2018 at 6:50 p.m. Teri Falcon Says...

We are debating which day would be the best for less waiting and crowds at Universal and Island of Adventure. We are debating between Mothers Day 2018 or the Monday after Mothers Day.

Reply
Apr 16, 2018 at 9:25 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Teri!

You can usually always count on weekdays being less busy than weekends and especially holidays. Our Crowd Calendar predicts the Monday after Mother's Day will be slightly less busy.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Apr 12, 2018 at 12:16 a.m. Jo Says...

Question- I know why Easter (April 21st 2019) is a high crowd week, but why is the 1st week of April of 2019 so busy?

Reply
Apr 19, 2018 at 7:59 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jo!

The spring break season in general tends to be quite crowded! We factor in school breaks, events taking place and more in order to calculate our predictions.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Apr 11, 2018 at 10:17 p.m. Melissa Says...

We are thinking of going the last week of August when the crowd levels are pretty low. One deluxe on property hotel is 600 more for the four nights, but comes with the express unlimited pass. With it being lower crowd, should I save the 600?

Reply
Apr 12, 2018 at 3:28 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Melissa,

If you can swing it, Unlimited Express Passes are always a great idea. However, you're correct - the crowd levels will be pretty low during the last week of August! That being said, if you want to save some extra cash and stay at one of the on-site hotels that does not include Unlimited Express Passes, we think you'll be totally fine.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Apr 9, 2018 at 7:51 p.m. Mario Says...

I will be going to Orlando April 21-25. What day would be best to visit Universal Island of Adventure, and is it worth getting an express pass if I will be going only one day

Reply
Apr 10, 2018 at 3:47 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Mario,

Weekdays are usually always less crowded than weekends, so if you're able to, we recommend choosing a weekday to visit! You're not visiting during a very busy time, so Express Pass isn't completely necessary. But if you can swing it, it definitely does help you skip the lines and ensure you get to experience the attractions you want!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Apr 7, 2018 at 12:32 a.m. Bonnie Says...

Hi there, we are planning a trip Thursday/Friday January 10th/11th. We want to do almost all the rides. Do you think its necessary to get an Express pass? Or should the wait this time of year be short enough to do everything without it? Thanks!

Reply
Apr 9, 2018 at 12:12 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Bonnie!

Our Crowd Calendar predicts moderate crowds on these days, so an Express Pass won't be necessary if you're spending two full days in the parks. However, it is a great way to save time!

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Apr 5, 2018 at 2:32 p.m. Frederick S Taylor Says...

Thinking of going Friday April 13th 2018. Should I expect larger than usual crowds or fairly average for a weekday?

Reply
Apr 5, 2018 at 7:11 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Frederick!

Crowds are pretty heavy this month since it's spring break season. Check out our Crowd Calendar for details!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Apr 1, 2018 at 7:24 a.m. Fred Says...

Hi there! I love all the great information and discounts on your site! Thank you!

My question is I purchased 2-park 3-day Park to Park Universal Studios tickets. On the tickets, it says they expire six days from first use. I would like to use the first day on Sunday. Can I use the last day on the following Saturday, or is Friday the last day I can use them? Maybe I am being silly, but it seems a bit unclear to me. Man, six days is not much time at all! Hope you can help me out! Thanks again!

Reply
Apr 6, 2018 at 1:10 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Fred!

You have seven days total including the first day, so you will be fine using the first day on Sunday and last day on Saturday. Let us know if you have any other questions :)

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Mar 26, 2018 at 12:58 a.m. Laurie Says...

Hi! My son and I will be in the area May 22-27, 2018. We were going to do one day at Disney and two at Universal. I was wondering if the crowds would be very bad. Since we have to days at Universal should we do Disney that Wednesday? Wondering about Friday crowds especially. Thank you!

Reply
Mar 18, 2018 at 4:12 p.m. Kim Says...

I am thinking about taking my children to Universal and Islands of Adventure on the Monday and Tuesday after Easter. Is that a terrible idea? I was only planning to pay for the express pass for one of those days (Tuesday).

Reply
Mar 19, 2018 at 9:37 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Kim!

Any holiday week is bound to be crowded, but purchasing the express pass one of those days will make a huge difference. You'll have a great time!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Mar 12, 2018 at 5:55 a.m. mrunal mestri Says...

Hi my name is mrunal, my family and I are planning to go to universal studios in the second week of June and I am someone who hates crowds so is it the right time to visit?

Reply
Mar 16, 2018 at 9:55 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Mrunal!

The summer months are always more crowded as kids are out of school during this time. Our Crowd Calendar predicts it will be pretty busy during the second week of June. If you hate crowds, we recommend visiting during less busy seasons, or purchasing the Universal Express Pass to avoid waiting in lines!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Mar 1, 2018 at 12:16 a.m. Hailey Says...

Hello,

My husband and I are going to Universal April 21st and 22nd. We plan on getting the park hopper passes for both days so we can leave one park when it closes and go to the other to spend the rest of our day there. It says on your crowd calendar that it's expected to be a 6/10 day, do you think we need the express passes unlimited or would you think it's going to be a waste of money? We've never been and we're really excited to ride all the rides and go see all the attractions! We just don't like super long lines and being too hot!

Thanks!

Reply
Mar 8, 2018 at 11:15 p.m. ang Says...

usually both parks close at 9, sometimes one closes at 8, its a lot of money to pay extra for park hopper for an hour...but you have to have park hopper to use the train at hogwarts

Reply
Mar 5, 2018 at 1:36 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Hailey!

We toad-ally recommend getting the express pass. While crowds won't be too crazy and you should be able to experience a majority of attractions, the express pass is your best bet to avoid long lines in the heat. It will make your experience that much better!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Mar 7, 2018 at 2:53 a.m. Jongab Says...

While I think the express passes are ideal, for my family of 5, the passes would cost us $1000 for 2 days. That's ridiculous! You have to weigh those options

Reply
Feb 24, 2018 at 4:10 p.m. Kathy Robbins Says...

So are your calendar recommendations based on last year or do they take into consideration this years events like spring break etc. I’m not sure how you come up with your light average and heavy days and most importantly your green check days!

Thanks

Reply
Feb 25, 2018 at 12:56 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Kathy,

You can click the SHOW ME button under "How does our crowd calendar work?" on our Crowd Calendar page for further insights. We factor in last year's crowds, this year's events and more!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Feb 23, 2018 at 12:29 a.m. Peanut Says...

Hi, we are planning on going on May. I saw in the aricle that weekends in May are not good? Why is that? How is that different from other weekends? We have fast pass will that be okay?

Thanks.

Reply
Mar 6, 2018 at 9:52 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Peanut!

You can check out our Crowd Calendar for details, but weekends in May are pretty busy due to locals heading to the parks for the fun happenings taking place. You will still have a great time with an Express Pass at Universal!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Feb 14, 2018 at 5:06 p.m. Donna Says...

Hi, I am thinking about planning a trip to Universal at the end November 2018. I feel that the pricing at Universal is significantly higher than Disney. When I am on the website, they always have a spot for a promotional code. I started entertaining this trip in the spring of 2017 and yet to see any promotional codes. Any suggestions? Thanks!

Reply
Feb 15, 2018 at 1:28 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Donna,

We aren't sure of any promotional codes, but we do offer discounted tickets for Universal Orlando Resort that you should check out!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Feb 13, 2018 at 10:07 p.m. Eric lilly Says...

We are going to universal studios orlando, march 28th-april 7th 2018 staying at sapphire falls do they do anything for easter

Reply
Mar 5, 2018 at 1:47 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Eric!

Last year, Sapphire Falls offered a special Easter brunch. Sounds like a wonderful time to enjoy with your family.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Mar 5, 2018 at 1:47 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Eric!

Last year, Sapphire Falls offered a special Easter brunch. Sounds like a wonderful time to enjoy with your family.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Feb 13, 2018 at 12:39 p.m. Mari Says...

Hola! I planned a very short trip and have been stressing out about being able to actually enjoy it. We will arrive May 1st but probably won't make it into the park until 1pm. We will be there a full day on the 2nd. Staying at Cabana so early access to HP. Would it be smart to do non HP stuff the day I arrive then after closing at 7pm hop over to the other park that's open until 10? Then the next day HP early access then before general opening run to the other side where despicable me is and get on those rides then work our way back to HP before 10PM closing? Im hoping all the spring break crowds will be cleared and it won't be so busy. Thank you! -Stressed out mama

Reply
Feb 13, 2018 at 9:29 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Mari!

You seem like an expert to us! This sounds like a great, efficient plan to make the most of your time. If you are able, purchase Express passes to minimize time spent waiting in line so you can experience the parks at a more leisurely pace.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Feb 1, 2018 at 3:32 p.m. Lil Says...

Valuable info but very hard to read with this font! Too small and light.

Reply
Jan 24, 2018 at 5:51 a.m. NATER Says...

I'm bringing a group of friends to Universal somewhere between Feb 20 and Feb 24. All the crowd calendars say this is an extremely busy time, but wondering why. I know President's Day weekend (Feb 17 & 18) as well as the Friday before (Feb 16) and Monday after (Feb 19) are busy since a lot of people are off. But that Tuesday through Friday (Feb 20-24) isn't any type of holiday or spring break for anybody. So why is it so busy then?

Reply
Jan 24, 2018 at 1:45 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi there,

Great question! Our Crowd Calendar depends on a variety of factors. First of all, any weeks with a holiday (in this case, President's Day) will always be more crowded. Disney is hosting its Princess Half Marathon that weekend, which will bring large crowds to the Orlando area...even at Universal! Lastly, Mardi Gras is taking place at Universal during this week which is a huge event. We hope this helps!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jan 27, 2018 at 12:13 a.m. Christina Corr Says...

This is a school vacation week in many New England states.

Reply
Jan 21, 2018 at 2:15 a.m. Lisa Says...

I took my daughter in 2017 the week after April Vacation and it was absolutely the BEST time ever!! No lines, no crowds and the weather was fantastic. I am surprised April isn't on your list at all!

Reply
Jan 18, 2018 at 5:46 p.m. Jack Says...

Thinking of doing Universal March 2-9th, is this a bad idea as I do not like long lines or crowds. We would be staying at Lowes Royal Pacific.

Thanks.

Reply
Jan 18, 2018 at 1:20 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jack,

Looking at our Orlando Crowd Calendar, it looks like crowds will be moderate. This is also right before the start of spring break season! It shouldn't be too crowded or crazy yet, but do expect it to be moderately busy. Keep in mind - if you stay at Loews Royal Pacific, you'll receive complimentary Universal Express Unlimited passes, which will help you skip the lines and cut your wait time down significantly!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jan 17, 2018 at 10:34 p.m. Kim Says...

Thinking about booking a quick trip through Costco for 2/9 - 2/13. Looks like crowds will be moderate to low. Should I worry about Express passes? We would be staying off site.

Reply
Jan 17, 2018 at 6:29 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Kim,

We are always trying our best to be budget-conscious, so if we were in your shoes, we would try going without Express passes. However, if you aren't able to visit often and want to make the most of your time, it may be worth the investment.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jan 13, 2018 at 2:37 p.m. Chasity Says...

My daughter is a huge Harry Potter fan and I'd like to take her to Universal Orlando to see the Harry Potter parks. How many days should we spend in the parks for her to have plenty of time to see everything? We won't be interested in the non-HP stuff. I know we definitely want to do the express passes too--financially are we better off to spend more money to stay in one of the hotels that includes those? Or stay in Cabana bay and pay the extra for tickets-or is it a wash? Thanks so much and love your site!!

Reply
Jan 16, 2018 at 2:25 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Chasity,

It depends on the time of year you plan on visiting, but if you're just wanting to visit the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, then we recommend two days to be sure you can take it all in! The hotels that offer the Unlimited Express Passes are Loew's Portofino Bay, Loew's Royal Pacific and the Hard Rock Hotel. They are pricier, but the money actually might even out since you won't have to purchase the passes. We recommend checking our hotels page, putting in your dates and comparing prices!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jan 3, 2018 at 10:08 p.m. Sandra Says...

Is it worth including volcano bay in our trip. Definitely want the two day universal but not sure if the weather will be god enough for waterpark. Jan 29th to Feb 3rd thanks

Reply
Jan 4, 2018 at 3:31 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Sandra,

Orlando weather can always be a bit unpredictable. That being said, it's not uncommon to enjoy the pool and water parks during January and February! You'll definitely want to keep your eye on the weather and temperatures if Volcano Bay is a priority for you.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Dec 29, 2017 at 4:12 p.m. Ra'Queisha Says...

Hi there we are thinking about going to Orlando on May 25 for about 4 days do you think we would be able to get a 2 day visit to Universal Studios?

Reply
Dec 29, 2017 at 2:42 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Ra'Quesisha,

Yes, it is definitely possible for you to experience Universal Orlando Resort in two days. Check out our Universal Orlando park plans and discounted tickets!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Dec 18, 2017 at 7:36 a.m. Sean Says...

Hi there... It is stated that Feb 16-25 and Mar 4 -Apr 6 in year 2018 are the worst times to visit Universal Orlando. Can I understand why?

Reply
Dec 19, 2017 at 1:41 a.m. Sean Says...

Hi Leap

Thanks for your response. How about Mar 4 -Apr 6 ?

Reply
Dec 20, 2017 at 3:33 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Sean,

Mid-March through the beginning of April are often busy because of spring break and Easter weekend.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Dec 18, 2017 at 10:13 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Sean,

February 16-25 includes President's Day Weekend and the Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend. These both can bring in a surge of crowds to the parks!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Dec 15, 2017 at 1:53 a.m. Kenneth MacDougald Says...

I was just wondering why the week of January 13-16 is a bad time to go to Universal. We are looking at coming down from Canada that week.

Thanks

Reply
Dec 18, 2017 at 10:21 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Kenneth,

The 16th is Martin Luther King Jr. Day, so most schools are out for the holiday and many people have the day off from work. This often brings in more visitors to the parks!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Dec 12, 2017 at 2:45 a.m. Teresa R. Says...

My daughter will be 11 on March 2, and we are thinking about surprising her with a trip. Our main interest is Harry Potter. We won't visit the water park. How many days would you suggest we plan to stay? I'm thinking maybe 4. Which hotel would be best for us? We're a family of 3. Thanks.

Reply
Dec 12, 2017 at 2:06 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Teresa,

Are you looking to just visit Universal Orlando? If so, then four days is a good amount. We always recommend staying on-site at one of the official Universal Orlando hotels because of their included benefits. If you want to stay off-site, you can check out some of our favorite Orlando hotels, as well!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Dec 10, 2017 at 10:14 p.m. sara Says...

Hi, I am planning a beach trip week of week of April 23, 2018. We were planning on going to Universal Studios either the beginning or end of our trip, so April 23rd or April 29, 2018. We are mainly gong for Harry Potter World but also would want to hit up some of the key attractions. DO you think it would be better at beginning or end of week? Also, is 1 day enough? Thanks for the help! Sara

Reply
Dec 11, 2017 at 1:33 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Sara,

Either of those days would be fine, according to our Crowd Calendar. Pick the one that works best for you. We recommend two days, but if you plan it out and make priorities, then it's definitely doable in one day. Check out our Universal Orlando one-day park plans.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Dec 10, 2017 at 5:06 p.m. Jane Says...

Hi there

Which of the Harry Potter rides would be the busiest

Please

Reply
Dec 11, 2017 at 10:58 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jane,

Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey and Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts are pretty much equally busy. It also depends on the day and what is going on in the parks!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Dec 4, 2017 at 9:07 p.m. Jeff Says...

We are planning to go to Universal Studios on April 20th and IOA on April 21st 2018. Not sure express passes are in the budget and the crowd calendar has it at 5 or 6. What should I expect? Is this enough time to do each park? Or should I consider doing Volcano Bay on 20th and do park to park at Universal Studios and IOA on 21st? Going with my wife and 10 year old son. Curious pros and cons. Thanks.

Reply
Dec 7, 2017 at 2:03 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jeff,

You should expect moderate crowds, but it won't be insanely crowded. You can definitely do both parks in two days. It would be a little more tough to do everything at both parks in one day, but you could certainly do it if you planned it correctly. Check out our park plans for Universal Orlando.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Dec 1, 2017 at 5:55 a.m. Angela L Hayes Says...

We are planning a last minute trip next week for 4 days to Florida will the crowds okay for just two days mid week to see both universal studio and Adventure Island

Reply
Nov 25, 2017 at 3:14 a.m. Emily Says...

Hi,

I was wondering why the week after New Year's (when every public school kid is back from Christmas break) is still red. What am I missing? Also, will it be warm enough to swim and enjoy the pools/water parks at that time?

Thanks, Emily

Reply
Dec 15, 2017 at 12:54 p.m. Michelle Says...

We live in Canada and travelling to universal, our schools are off until the second week of Jan

Reply
Nov 28, 2017 at 1:39 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Emily,

There could be a number of reasons, but one could be that the holiday celebrations are still going on in the parks. There is also the Walt Disney World Marathon weekend Jan. 3-7, which brings in crowds to the Orlando theme parks. The pools are heated and it still can be quite warm during January (plus humidity), so you should be able to swim.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Nov 23, 2017 at 5:33 p.m. Mona Says...

We are considering going to Universal Feb 2 and 3, 2018 Our main purpose is Harry Potter world with the kids. Do you think we need to stay on property to skip the line and have early access on these dates? Or can we save our money and stay off property? I'm trying to go over a weekend with fewer crowds, we are flexible on dates, but it has to be a Friday/Saturday. Thanks!

Reply
Nov 28, 2017 at 1:48 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Mona,

Early access is always a plus, but according to our crowd calendar, there should be moderate crowds on that day. You should be fine with staying off property, but we still recommend getting to the park as soon as it opens to be some of the first inside.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Nov 22, 2017 at 8:16 p.m. Michelle Says...

Hi, my family of 4 will be staying in Orlando the week of Feb.5-12, 2018. We are not staying at the Universal hotels but outside the park. It looks like this is a good and quieter time to go from looking at your Crowd Calender. We are planning to purchase ahead Harry Potter and Islands of Adventure (2 day park to park pass), so we were wondering whether we should also add the Express Pass as well? Will it be busy enough to justify the extra cost? What are the hours of the park in February since we are obviously not getting into the park with an early admittance like the people that are staying onsite. Any advice with this would be great, thanks!

Reply
Nov 22, 2017 at 7:03 a.m. Miki Says...

We wanted to celebrate our 1 yr anniversary but being that it is on April 1st & so is Easter, we are going to skip that idea & now thinking the first week in May? I dont see this as a heavy crowd ti.e but are the evenings warm enough to enjoy the water rides & the pools? Or should we push it towards the last week of May

Reply
Nov 22, 2017 at 2:22 a.m. Remi Says...

Yesterday we visited island of adventure and it was so much fun.The only thing that was chaotic during thanksgiving were the people working there.Everyone was trying to go one way while the workers(which were collage student) were trying to move everyone the other way.

Reply
Nov 21, 2017 at 2:09 p.m. Lanie Says...

Hi, I appreciate the valuable information. I am planning on visiting Universal and Islands of Adventure Jan. 2-4 2018, with express passes would you say that it would still be as enjoyable as when the parks are empty? With it being a weekday especially?

Reply
Nov 21, 2017 at 11:08 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Lanie,

An Express Pass will definitely cut your wait time down, especially during a busy time. We recommend it if you can do it!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Nov 21, 2017 at 4:20 a.m. Melissa Says...

We will be in Florida for the Disney Cup the week before New Years and we were hoping to do Universal but it looks like it might not be a good idea... What are your thoughts?

Reply
Nov 21, 2017 at 11:19 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Melissa,

Be prepared for the parks to be crowded and busy! We love the parks during the holiday season. Hop over to this post for some tips on managing crowds and more during the holidays.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Nov 17, 2017 at 4:26 p.m. Dawn Says...

We're only going to be able to spend one day at Universal during the week of Thanksgiving 2017 (high crowd time). Should we only buy a one park ticket or will we be able to see both parks in one day?

Reply
Nov 16, 2017 at 8:26 p.m. Wendy Says...

When is the best time for prices? We want to visit in March of 2018. I've found pages with historical disney discojnts but i cant find anything similar for Universla Orlando. We wan to stay at Royal Pacific but right now it'd almost full price. I've already purchased tickets from UndrrCoverTiyyrist.

Reply
Nov 16, 2017 at 12:11 p.m. Rob Says...

Great blog - thanks.

We're thinking of coming from 26th May 2018 for one week - which is a school holiday in the UK. I see your crowd calendar predicts it to be busy - is it a holiday in the US as well?

Reply
Nov 16, 2017 at 11:32 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Rob,

The weekend of the 26th is Memorial Day weekend. It's a school and work holiday!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Nov 13, 2017 at 12:25 a.m. Valerie Says...

We are looking to visit the week of June 10, 2018. What should we expect as far as crowds and, more importantly, weather. How hot and humid is it in June and what about rain? Thank you!

Reply
Nov 15, 2017 at 11:17 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Valerie,

You should expect the parks to be fairly busy and crowded. The majority of kids are out of school and on summer vacation. You can check crowd levels on our crowd calendar. The average high for June is around 80 degrees. It is also pretty humid and Florida is notorious for random rainstorms throughout the day!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Oct 29, 2017 at 7:16 p.m. wheat Says...

Does your crown calendar take into account conventions and other events taking place? I also noticed on the calendar days during the week that are noted busy for that park (red exclamation point), but doesn't state why. (Happened to be looking mid Nov.)

Thanks!

Reply
Oct 30, 2017 at 8:08 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi,

Our Crowd Calendar uses past attendance information, school calendars, vacations and major events, such as Disney marathons and the Pro Bowl. Conventions are rather consistent and don't impact the parks quite as much as the above events.

As for the red exclamation, that symbol means we're expecting the park to be busy.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Oct 26, 2017 at 3:40 a.m. Ana Says...

Is there an specific time of the year when you can find more offers for Universal tickets? I plan to go on Jan 2018 and Universal parks are a must!

Reply
Oct 26, 2017 at 8:37 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Ana,

Ticket specials hop up throughout the year. Keep checking!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Oct 23, 2017 at 7:49 p.m. Tiffany Says...

Have you ever visited during the Harry Potter Celebration? We're thinking of going to Disney that week of the HP Celebration and wanted to go to Universal the last day of our trip(mainly to see the Wizarding World) but had no idea until now that it is actually going to be a big event. Do you think it will be too crowded to enjoy? Although I am a huge fan of HP, the rest of my family is not and as much as I would enjoy the event...I am not sure the stress of the crowds would be worth it for the rest of the family.

-1st timer

Reply
Oct 24, 2017 at 4:34 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Tiffany,

It's one of our favorite Universal experiences! Check out our post on A Celebration of Harry Potter to learn all about the experience. It's crowded but enjoyable.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Oct 21, 2017 at 5:47 p.m. manag Says...

So we are apparently planning to do the unthinkable - visiting on 2017 Christmas weekend. Do you think that is advisable if we get the express unlimted. 3 adults, no kids.

Reply
Oct 23, 2017 at 9:18 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi,

If you're going to visit during Christmas weekend, then Express Unlimited is the way to go!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Sep 8, 2017 at 1:39 a.m. Cheryl Says...

Planning to visit Universal 11/8/17-11/14/17, hoping to stay at the Cabana Bay. We haven't been there in many years..this being the first visit for our kids, ages 9 and 15. We're planning to purchase park-to-park passes...is that a long enough stay to see Universal, Islands of Adventure and Volcano Bay having this be their first visit? CityWalk we plan to do if we have 'extra' time. Thanks in advance!!

Reply
Sep 8, 2017 at 7:55 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Cheryl,

Three days for Universal Studios Florida and Islands of Adventure is a good time to see everything and not rush. Allow one day for Volcano Bay. Use your downtime for CityWalk. Have fun!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Aug 31, 2017 at 10:54 a.m. Tony Says...

We're planning on going 7th April 2018. Chose this as it'll be a week after Easter and most of spring break will have died down. Do you reckon I am making the right assumptions or is there something else I should consider that drives the crowds high. Thanks,

Reply
Sep 1, 2017 at 9:03 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Tony,

Looking at our Crowd Calendar, we are forecasting heavy crowds through the first half of April. Some school districts will have spring break during those weeks.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Aug 20, 2017 at 2:12 p.m. Dave Says...

It looks like February 21-25 will be the best time for our family to visit Universal. We plan to stay on site and utilize Express Passes. I've noticed several calendars that project that to be a busy time, but the only indication as to why was Disney's Princess marathon. Is that truly likely to have an effect on Universal's parks or are there other factors?

Thanks for your excellent site, and in advance for your input!

Reply
Aug 20, 2017 at 2:48 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Dave,

In addition to the Disney Marathon, some school districts on the East coast are off that week. Many people head down to Disney and Universal, which will impact crowds. Take a look at our Crowd Calendar to see which days are best for visiting Universal.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Aug 20, 2017 at 8:11 p.m. Dave Says...

Thank you so much!

Reply
Aug 20, 2017 at 12:51 a.m. Lindsay Hall Says...

Omgosh this is so awesome! I need to he there!

Reply
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