The Very Best Times to Visit Universal Orlando in 2023 and 2024

by Leap on November 4, 2022 3652 Orlando

Inside This Post Inside This Post

Summary

This is what Universal Orlando Resort trip planning sounds like around the Frog Pond: "We have to do Hagrid's 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." 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 time to visit Universal Orlando in 2023 and 2024, as well as some factors to keep in mind when planning your awesome Universal Orlando vacation.

Best Time to Visit Universal Orlando - Universal Globe

Planning When to Visit Universal Orlando in 2023 and 2024

While we have no crystal ball (we wish we did!), we do have historical trends available to pull from when making predictions. But there's one important caveat in 2023: As more families are hopping back into action, we expect that crowds will be heavier than usual throughout the year. That said, there will still be some times when crowds are lower. We're here to give you our best guesses on crowd levels based on our years of data collection and insights. And, action!

Best Time to Visit Universal Orlando in 2023 - Dates by Season

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 park plans and Orlando park plans app, and use Universal Express. For those of you who can, we highly recommend visiting the parks on weekdays, especially during peak times such as the week of Thanksgiving and the end of December into early January, as well as spring and summer breaks.

Best Time to Visit Universal Orlando - Loews Portofino Bay Resort

We also 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. This skip-the-regular line benefit is a big help for saving time in the parks, especially if you're visiting on weekends. All Universal Orlando Resort hotels offer Early Park Admission, which is also a super hopful tool to get a jump on your day.

Keep in mind that the parks have and do hit capacity during peak times, even though a reservation system is not in place. We cannot emphasize enough just how much we recommend getting to the parks early! For even more tips for visiting Universal during peak times, hop over to our full post.

The sooner you can purchase your tickets, the better chance you'll have at selecting your desired dates (and the more hotel availability you'll find!). Planning ahead is the name of the game — and you've already taken the first step by reading this post :)

Other Factors to Consider When Determining the Best Time to Visit Universal Orlando

Best Time to Visit Universal Orlando - Family in Jurassic Park Area

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 times to visit, as well as Universal Orlando hours.

Best Times to Visit Universal Orlando - Velocioaster

There's no denying there are better times to visit Universal Orlando than others. It should come as no surprise that the best time to visit Universal Orlando usually falls along with school schedules. Generally, when the tadpoles are out of school, there are higher crowds at Universal. This applies to one-day holidays such as Martin Luther King Jr. Day, a weeklong spring break or the big draw — summer vacation. The week of Thanksgiving and from Christmas into the new year are notably busy, as well.

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.

Big openings can also bring big crowds who want to be among the first to experience the thrills. Even openings and events at other resorts, such as Disney World's 50th-anniversary celebration, have some trickle-over effect. I mean, if you're already coming to Orlando, why not experience the Wizarding World too? In 2023, this ripple effect may be felt with the opening of TRON Lightcycle / Run, opening spring 2023 at Magic Kingdom.

So When Is the Best Time to Universal Orlando in 2023 and 2024?

The very best times to visit Universal Orlando in 2023 are ...

  • Jan. 18 – Feb. 15
  • March 1-10
  • April 17-30
  • Weekdays in the first half of May
  • The second half of August
  • Most days in September (minus the days around Labor Day)
  • Most weekdays in October (minus the days around Columbus Day)
  • Weekdays in November (minus the week of Thanksgiving)
  • Weekdays in December (minus the weeks of Christmas and New Year's Eve)

The very best times to visit Universal Orlando in 2024 are ...

  • Jan. 17 – Feb. 16
  • March 1-8
  • April 15-30
  • Weekdays in the first half of May
  • The second half of August
  • Most days in September (minus the days around Labor Day)
  • Most weekdays in October (minus the days around Columbus Day)
  • Weekdays in November (minus the week of Thanksgiving)
  • Weekdays in December (minus the weeks of Christmas and New Year's Eve)

Historically, September has been the very best 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 the best month to visit. The popularity of Halloween Horror Nights, however, 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 - Hogwarts Castle

Keep in mind that September is 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 very worst times to visit Universal Orlando in 2023 are ...

  • Jan. 1-8, Jan. 13-17
  • Feb. 16-27
  • March 11 - April 16*
  • Weekends in May
  • June
  • July
  • The first half of August
  • The week of Thanksgiving
  • The first week of December**
  • The week of Christmas through the week of New Year

The very worst times to visit Universal Orlando in 2024 are ...

  • Jan. 1-9, Jan. 13-16
  • Feb. 17-28
  • March 9 - April 14*
  • Weekends in May
  • June
  • July
  • The first half of August
  • The week of Thanksgiving
  • The first week of December**
  • The week of Christmas through the week of New Year

*The big variable for spring is when Easter falls. When it's earlier in the season, there is generally a shorter, more intense "spring break" as school districts narrow down the week they give kids off. When it's later in spring, there is generally a longer but less intense "spring break" season as school districts have more variance in the week they give kids off. In 2023, Easter falls on April 9, and in 2024, Easter falls on March 31. That means we should expect two spring break seasons that are more compressed, making things feel a little extra crowded.

**The Pop Warner Super Bowl and National Cheer & Dance Championships used to take place at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex, but as of 2021, Universal Orlando Resort is the new home for the national championship a week in early December. While we wait for exact dates for 2023 and 2024, know that the championship is taking place Dec. 5-8, 2022.

Holiday Crowds at Universal Orlando in 2023 and 2024

Best Times to Visit Universal Orlando - The Grinch

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, but there are a few other details of note if you'll be visiting Universal Orlando while this eerie (but epic) event is going on. While daytime crowds are typically not impacted too severely by HHN, know that Universal Studios Florida closes early on evenings when the event is taking place (Universal's Islands of Adventure, however, remains open!). So while you shouldn't worry about event crowds terrorizing your day, you'll want to plan accordingly if you want to maximize your time by either visiting Universal's Islands of Adventure, or opting for a park-to-park ticket to hop over once Universal Studios Florida closes for the event. Wanna know more about the best time to visit Halloween Horror Nights? We've got all of the details in our full post. For more information on Universal Orlando hours, and which nights HHN will be taking place, check out our Crowd Calendar.

Christmas has also become a bigger deal at Universal Orlando than in past years with the arrival of Christmas in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. Muggles and wizards alike are flocking to the parks to enjoy the holiday decorations, entertainment and food in Hogwarts and Diagon Alley. Plus, Universal is home to the green meanie himself — The Grinch!

Universal Orlando's Most Crowded Holidays

  • New Year's Day - Jan. 1
  • Easter - April 9, 2023, and March 31, 2024
  • Independence Day - July 4
  • Thanksgiving - Nov. 23, 2023, and Nov. 28, 2024
  • Christmas Eve - Dec. 24
  • Christmas - Dec. 25
  • New Year's Eve - Dec. 31

Best Holidays to Visit Universal Orlando in 2023 and 2024

Best Time to Visit Universal Orlando - Adventure Sign Islands of Adventure

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. Do keep in mind that for 2023, we expect these dates to be busier than normal because of pent-up travel demand.

  • Veterans Day (and Veterans Day Observed) - Nov. 11
  • Martin Luther King Jr. Day -  Jan. 16, 2023, and Jan. 15, 2024
  • Presidents Day - Feb. 20, 2023, and Feb. 19, 2024
  • Labor Day - Sept. 4, 2023, and Sept. 2, 2024
  • Columbus Day - Oct. 9, 2023, and Oct. 14, 2024

Now you know the best time to visit Universal Orlando in 2023 and 2024. 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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1801–1850 of 3290 comments
Dec 5, 2022 at 5:43 p.m. Diane Diaz Says...

Thank you for the estimate crowd forecast. Really helpful in deciding what days we should go on!!

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Dec 5, 2022 at 5:43 p.m. Hannah Says...

Awesome!

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Dec 5, 2022 at 5:40 p.m. Carmen Says...

I can't wait to get back to Universal!!

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Dec 5, 2022 at 5:39 p.m. Lexi Says...

This is great information! I always find a hard time fining the best days to visit parks and this made it very clear! Very useful information!

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Dec 5, 2022 at 5:38 p.m. Emily KW Says...

Planning a trip for fall and this blog has been super helpful with dates! Can't wait to bring our little one to experience Disney for the first time for her first birthday ????

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Dec 5, 2022 at 5:33 p.m. Ryanh85 Says...

Can't wait to visit

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Dec 5, 2022 at 5:32 p.m. G Says...

Wow so many crowds thanks for the info!

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Dec 5, 2022 at 5:31 p.m. Daziah Says...

I really enjoyed visiting the week before thanksgiving this year. It was probably more busy than usual due to the hurricane and people extending their trips. Weather was awesome though!

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Dec 5, 2022 at 5:29 p.m. Yasmim Says...

I love this!!!

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Dec 5, 2022 at 5:29 p.m. Haley Carpenter Says...

thanks for this informative post!

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Dec 5, 2022 at 5:28 p.m. Sydney Z Says...

The crowd calendar is a game changer! Can’t wait for our next family trip!

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Dec 5, 2022 at 5:27 p.m. Bridget MacKinnon Says...

Your newsletter is always interesting and informative for all us Disney fans!!

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Dec 5, 2022 at 5:25 p.m. Brooke H Says...

Thanks for this article. My daughter is looking for times to visit next year and this helped tremendously!!!

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Dec 5, 2022 at 5:25 p.m. Lisa O. Says...

I would love to visit during the Christmas season. My wedding anniversary is in November so perfect time!

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Dec 5, 2022 at 5:25 p.m. Michele Says...

Always good info!

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Dec 5, 2022 at 5:23 p.m. Sara_sapphire Says...

Fall is my favorite time

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Dec 5, 2022 at 5:23 p.m. William (AJ) Best Says...

Very helpful information, thank you!!!

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Dec 5, 2022 at 5:22 p.m. Kristin S Says...

THANK YOU for always sharing the most valuable info! As a Central Floridian - the slowest days are the *best* days at the parks.

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Dec 5, 2022 at 5:20 p.m. Zachary G. Says...

We just got back from UO and it was so much less crowded than Disney. We referred to the crowd calendar and it didn’t fail us! We waited only 40 minutes for hagrids and 15 mins max for every other ride. Fantastic resource!

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Dec 5, 2022 at 5:20 p.m. Sahira Says...

Early Feb is the best time to visit for sure! Low crowds & almost every ride was a walk up !

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Dec 5, 2022 at 5:20 p.m. Trisha Leos Says...

My family used to go Mid December when we were younger.

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Dec 5, 2022 at 5:19 p.m. Lexi N Says...

For someone who doesn’t like crowds or insane temperatures, this was all very good to know!

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Dec 5, 2022 at 5:18 p.m. Andrew Says...

I love to visit Universal during special occasions such as Mardi Gras (highly recommend), HHN, and Christmas. If you’re looking for least crowded… I would say beginning of the year or September during the week

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Dec 5, 2022 at 5:18 p.m. Jalisa Harris Says...

I love this! My family is always trying to find the best times/dates to go anywhere because we have little ones and appreciate it when there isn’t such a larger crowd or when we want to know the best weather for that time! Thank you for this!

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Dec 5, 2022 at 5:14 p.m. bashhleyy Says...

I'm thinking about trying January or February this year! I have been in the dead of summer and in December. Going to try middle of winter and see how I enjoy it!

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Dec 5, 2022 at 5:14 p.m. Jules Says...

Good to know when planning

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Dec 5, 2022 at 5:11 p.m. Ana Says...

Thanks for this info it was very helpful

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Nov 27, 2022 at 5:08 a.m. Cody Says...

Thanks for the great info! We were looking at a trip over Presidents’ Day (in the parks Feb 19th - 22nd) which is listed as one of the good holidays to go. However those dates also look to likely have some of the highest crowds. Is there an event going on Feb 16-27 that would draw big crowds?

Reply
Dec 1, 2022 at 2:53 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Cody!

Compared to bigger holidays such as Christmas or Thanksgiving, Presidents' Day weekend won't be as crowded. However, it can still draw significant crowds since kids are usually out of school and parents may have the day off so it's more concentrated on that particular day (and overall weekend) - relative to the rest of the month. Some other factors going on during that timeframe include Mardi Gras and the Disney Princess Half-Marathon Weekend (while the crowds will mostly stick to Disney World, some race participants may hop over to Universal to catch two flies in one trip, if you know what I mean!).

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Nov 18, 2022 at 7:58 p.m. Ashley Lorenz Says...

Most websites say that *when* the Hogwarts light show happens, it's at 6:45 earliest. Does that mean that the light show would NOT be happening the weekend of January 13-17 (MLK) 2022 because the parks close at 6pm that time of year?

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Nov 21, 2022 at 12:30 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Ashley!

We don't know the official showtimes or park hours for that timeframe yet, but the show generally depends on the timing of dusk. If the park closes before dusk, then it won't run. But if the park hours are late enough after sunset, we would expect it to run shortly after dusk. At this time, we recommend that you keep checking the app for confirmation.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Nov 12, 2022 at 12:38 p.m. Erin Says...

We will be in Florida over the holidays and want to do a two park one day at universal. There are only two days we can go, either Dec 30 or Jan 1. Which is better? The hours aren’t even posted yet for the first!! :-(

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Nov 14, 2022 at 1:10 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Erin!

They are both going to feel about the same in terms of crowds, so we'd pick whichever works best with your schedule!

Keep hopping!

Leap

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Oct 25, 2022 at 7:03 p.m. Dolly Says...

We plan to visit Universal Orlando from March 27- April 1. Or June 5- 10. Which would be better time cost & crowd wise.

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Oct 26, 2022 at 9:20 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Dolly!

We compared ticket and Express Pass prices and they were just about the same (with only a few dollars difference) during those two different time windows (Universal hotel rates were about $20 cheaper per night in June). As far as crowds go, March 27-April 1 falls during the middle of spring break season and June will be right at the start of summer vacations, so we'd expect elevated crowds for either one (though peak summer crowds usually don't start until later in June — for that reason, June may be slightly better crowds-wise). Other things you may want to consider are special events (Mardi Gras is taking place until April 16 in 2023) and weather (March/April would have nicer weather).

Keep hopping!

Leap

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Oct 20, 2022 at 5:26 p.m. Ana Says...

we are arriving Jan 4 and doing a 1 day park to park on the 5th how bad will it be?

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Oct 21, 2022 at 10:05 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Ana!

Local schools will be back in session on Jan. 4, so that generally helps with crowd levels. The first week can be busy with leftover holiday crowds but it certainly won't be as busy as the previous week between Christmas and New Year's — higher crowds are also more likely at Disney because of the Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend, though we point it out because some may decide to visit Universal too.

Keep hopping!

Leap

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Oct 19, 2022 at 4:27 p.m. JUAN Says...

I plan to visit Universal from 26 Dec to 30 Dec. How busy you think will be ?

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Oct 19, 2022 at 3:33 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Juan!

The week between Christmas and New Year's is usually one of busiest (if not, the busiest) weeks of the year. But don't fret! We have some tips for going to Universal during a busy time, which you can find here. Let us know if you have any other questions!

Keep hopping!

Leap

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Oct 9, 2022 at 8:52 a.m. Marie Says...

Hi there, thank you for all the information on your website, its so helpful! We are visiting Florida for the first time on 9th October 2023 for 10 days and I have no clue where to start with booking tickets! We are a family of 6 and really want to go to Univeral. Could you tell me when is the cheapest time to order my Universal tickets please and if there is a date you think would be better for us to visit Universal. Thank you so much!

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Oct 18, 2022 at 2:05 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Marie!

Thanks for hopping by! We encourage purchasing your tickets early once you've nailed down your dates, as prices are subject to change at anytime. We'd recommend visiting on a weekday versus over a weekend (with the exception of Oct. 9, which is a holiday — Columbus Day/Indigenous Peoples' Day).

Keep hopping!

Leap

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Sep 3, 2022 at 8:39 p.m. Lisa wilson Says...

We are coming down the first week in November we usually come down during April but we decided to change it up this year it seems that the crowds are possibly a little less the first week in November thoughts

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Aug 22, 2022 at 12:53 a.m. T Max Says...

We (family of 5) are planning to go to Universal Studios the first week in December. We thought this would be a less busy time, but we were a bit scared by the comment about the Pop Warner cheerleading competition being that week. Is it a lot busier at Universal that week? Or just at the hotels? Would another week be better?

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Aug 22, 2022 at 10:59 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi T Max!

This year, the Pop Warner Super Bowl & Cheer and Dance National Championships will be taking place Dec. 2-10, 2022. It will affect the hotels the most, so we'd recommend booking your hotel as soon as you nail down the dates. On Dec. 6, there's a private celebration party that starts at 7 p.m., which will close both theme parks to the public early that night. While the events take place off-site at the Orange County Convention Center (Cheer and Dance) and Camping World Stadium (Football), the parks could still be impacted throughout the week (in the case that there are some who are not competing one day and go to the parks on a day off).

Keep hopping!

Leap

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Aug 18, 2022 at 4:58 p.m. Wes Says...

Was thinking about planning a trip for 2023, January 3rd-6th. Thought after New Years was a good time but not sure now after reading this article.

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Aug 19, 2022 at 1:16 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Wes!

There may be slightly elevated crowds, but for the most part, it won't be as busy as the prior week! We're taking into account the runDisney Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend which runs from Jan. 4-8, 2023. While the event will mainly affect Disney World crowds, some families may decide to hit both while they're in Orlando. Also, local schools go back in session on Jan. 4. so the first half of the week may remain busy.

Keep hopping!

Leap

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Aug 9, 2022 at 4:46 p.m. MAY Says...

HI,

Planning on the first week of March (6th-13th). How is the crowd? Is the weather warm enough for my kids to swim in the pool? We are coming from Quebec Canada. Counting the days.

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Aug 11, 2022 at 2:28 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi May!

Universal Orlando hotel pools are heated, and daytime temps should be perfect for swimming - have a great time!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Aug 5, 2022 at 12:06 p.m. Kiran Says...

Hi there, we are planning a trip Nov 22-25, it was the only time we could get off work, we have a5 and 7 year old and wondering if the crowds for the attractions for them will be super crowded or bearable. planning to go to jurassic and harry potter and marvel. other option may be to move the week before. any thoughts?

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Aug 11, 2022 at 3:15 p.m. Kelly Says...

We went to Islands of Adventures on Thanksgiving day last year, and it wasn't too bad crowded. We made sure to go to the Harry Potter rides first. I noticed the waits for the little kid rides were not bad at all, except for one that was in the Dr. Seus area. The crowds definitely grew after 10 am, so go to the more popular rides you want to ride first. We were only there one day, so we decided ahead of time which rides we had to ride and used this website's hints and map to get it done. We even had time to ride some rides not on our list. Hope this helps. Have fun!

Reply
Aug 11, 2022 at 10:39 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Such great tips, Kelly - we're so hoppy you had a great visit! Thanks for sharing!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Aug 5, 2022 at 2:18 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Kiran!

If you have the option for the week before, we'd go with that alternative. But if you're unable to, then we'd consider time-saving tools such as the Express Pass and Early Park Admission (if you're staying at a Universal hotel). We have a separate blog post about going to Universal during a busy time that may help!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jul 26, 2022 at 11:38 p.m. Mish Says...

Has there been confirmed dates for the Pop Werner Dance & Cheer event this December?

I’ll be at Universal 7-11 and staying at Dockside which I heard is where they all stay.

Personally I can’t think of anything worse than rogue teenagers running the halls of the hotel and parks.

Reply
Jul 28, 2022 at 8:24 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Mish!

It doesn't look like the 2022 dates have been announced yet (the season starts in 4 days so we may learn more soon). However, based off the event's history, it took place Dec. 4-11, 2021 and Dec. 7-14, 2019 — the first Saturday through the second Saturday of the month — so we'd expect it to hoppen Dec. 3-10 this year.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jul 20, 2022 at 4:55 p.m. Oliver Dickinson Says...

Hi,

I visited Universal Orlando this January 2022 (31st Jan - 12th Feb).

Looking at dates next year:

How do you think the parks will be from 29th Jan - Feb 9th 2023?

Parks were fairly quiet this year during that period and weather was not too bad either!

Reply
Jul 20, 2022 at 3:52 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Oliver!

Yes, that's a great time to visit Universal Orlando! :)

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jul 19, 2022 at 10:37 p.m. Ginger Says...

Hi there......I have a park model trailer in a park all year round so an address so with a bill /Canadian ID would be considered a Florida resident ( did Disney that way last year) and would like to go to Universal this year dec4th and dec5th ......I have friends( 2 adults us 7 year old) coming down from Canada to go too.....what is the best costs to do this for me ? And them if we share a hotel? Want express passes I am thinking ? Me but an annual pass? ( Get hotel discount for us all in one room)/buy my 2 park -2day pass in Florida ( usually specials down there and then pick up express passes? Stay in a lower end hotel there or higher end ? ( With annual pass discount and express unltd thrown in?) ( Annual pass allows me to but tickets for them at gate at 15%off but more expensive at the gate?)(annual pass only gives me express pass after 4 - so doesn't work for all of us going together )

Helppppp lol

Reply
Jul 29, 2022 at 2:30 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Ginger!

You definitely have options! We would recommend Express Passes if you can swing it - whether you purchase separately or stay at a premier hotel. If you purchase separately, we'd suggest buying those as early as possible to lock in the lowest price since the price will likely increase if you wait last minute or get them on the day of (also note: if you want to have Express Passes on both days, you would need to purchase each day separately, so it may be easier to go the hotel route, which includes it for the length of your stay). Similarly, if you choose to go with a premier hotel, book your reservation early. As far as considering an annual pass for yourself, it probably depends on how much you're going to use it. If you think you'll make repeat visits, then go for it (you'll also get discounts on food and merchandise). But if you're only planning on those two days, it could be less expensive to go with a 2-Park, 2-Day ticket (you'd have to compare the prices to see which would be cheaper). For your friends, we do offer discounted tickets, as well as hotel rates.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jul 14, 2022 at 11:14 p.m. Oliver Says...

Hi, went to universal end of Jan/start of Feb this year. Loved it, crowds were not that bad during the week.

We are looking to book May 2023. Dates thinking are roughly 8th May-18th May. Is anything special happening during that period to make the parks busier? Or should they be quieter?

Reply
Jul 15, 2022 at 9:30 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Oliver!

The only special event usually hoppening right around that time are the Gradventure nights for middle school graduates (so the two theme parks may close early on May 12 while you're there, as well as May 5 and May 19). Early May is generally a quieter time overall, as it's after the spring break season but a little too early for summer breaks, which can begin as early as Memorial Day weekend.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jul 20, 2022 at 9:50 a.m. Oliver Says...

Thanks for the reply.

What would you recommend,

25th April - 6th May, or 7th May - 18th May?

crowd levels and weather wise?

Thanks

Reply
Jul 20, 2022 at 3:56 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Oliver!

Both would be about the same in terms of crowds! Weather would also be fairly similar, but it could be hotter (and potentially rainier) as it gets closer to summer, so April 25 to May 6 gets the slight edge over the middle of May.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jul 5, 2022 at 10:20 p.m. Isis Says...

Hi, thank you for the guide its very helpful! I'm planning a vacation from August 27-31. Is this a better or worse time to go than then week after labor day? I was thinking it was better because its right when kids go back to school and its before labor day, but I'm afraid of rides going down for maintenance for HHN coming up. Is this an issue to think about? Thanks!

Reply
Jul 6, 2022 at 9:56 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Isis!

Either week should be fine, because of exactly what you said! Kids have just gone back to school so crowds slow down around then (other than Labor Day). You can use our Crowd Calendar to compare, but the week before and the week after Labor Day are just about the same. Rides don't usually go down for maintenance or ride overlays for Halloween Horror Nights, so you don't need to worry about that! You can keep up to date with our Refurbishments post, which we update weekly.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jul 2, 2022 at 2:46 p.m. Lisa Says...

We are planning on vacationing Oct 12-18th (family of 4). We will probably be staying at Cabana or Dockside. I haven’t found any openings at the premier hotels. Is there an advantage to either hotel?

When would be the best days to visit the parks? We are planning for 3 park days. Should we purchase an express pass before hand or wait until we get to the park to decide? We will be purchasing park-park ticket.

Reply
Jul 5, 2022 at 9:02 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Lisa!

In terms of benefits such as Early Park Admission, there aren't any differences between Dockside and Cabana Bay Beach (they both offer it!). The major differences would be amenities, location and prices. Dockside is considered one of the value resorts, so it would be the cheaper option, while Cabana Bay Beach is a prime value resort. Cabana Bay Beach is close enough to the theme parks that there is a walking path (in addition to shuttle buses), and shuttle buses are the only transportation option at Dockside. Lastly, Cabana Bay Beach has more amenities, including a lazy river and a bowling alley.

As far as which days to visit, you will be visiting during the HHN season. So even if you are not attending, you may want to visit Universal Studios on a non-HHN day for longer hours. We also generally recommend weekdays over weekends. To save money on Express, it is best to purchase in advance, as the price is subject to change (usually increases as the date gets closer). But if you're waffling on the decision, you may prefer to wait until you're able to scope out the crowds. You can use our Crowd Calendar to help you choose dates, as well!

Keep hopping!

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Jul 2, 2022 at 4:34 a.m. Carmen Says...

My bf and I just book sept 12-16 and the Loews royal pacific. Super excited but nervous about rain ????????????????????????????????

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Jul 5, 2022 at 8:25 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Carmen!

Yay, we're super excited for you! While we can't promise that you won't encounter bad weather, we do have a blog post about tips for a rainy day at Universal that may ease some of the anxiousness.

Keep hopping!

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Jun 21, 2022 at 2:59 p.m. Rita Says...

Please can you tell me do you have book days you want to go at universal like you do at Disney

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Jun 21, 2022 at 12:26 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Rita!

Tickets are date-based, so in a way, you'll still need to know the date of your first day at the parks at the very least, but otherwise, no — a separate theme park reservation is not required.

Keep hopping!

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May 19, 2022 at 5:44 p.m. Jena Says...

Is an express pass worth it in a Wednesday in October?

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May 23, 2022 at 11:10 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jena!

If it's your only day in the parks and you are wanting to max your time and hit most of the attractions in both parks, we think Express is toadally worth it!

Keep hopping!

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May 5, 2022 at 3:06 p.m. Hope Monk Says...

We are planning for Nov. 27- Dec 2. There are 7 of us going and I can't decide if I need to get us the express passes or not.

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May 6, 2022 at 9:07 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Hope!

If you're wanting to have Express for your entire trip, then we'd consider looking into staying in a suite (large enough to fit your party) at a Universal Premier hotel, which includes the free Unlimited Express benefit. Purchasing Express separately (note: the cost is per person, per day) can potentially turn out to be pricier, though since the prices are variable for both the hotel room rates and individual Express passes, you'd need to crunch the numbers to see which makes the most sense. If you only want to use Express for some days during your trip to save money (and are staying off-site or at a non-Premier hotel), then we'd look into purchasing separately. While we've never regretted having Express, we also know that six days gives you a lot of time to explore the parks (as opposed to a one or two day visit with more of a time crunch) so it may not be a necessity.

Keep hopping!

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Apr 18, 2022 at 6:52 p.m. Amber Says...

We (our family of 5, 3 teenagers) are trying to decide which week would be better to visit Universal Orlando...Dec. 24-30 or Jan. 1-6? The Christmas week will have all the beautiful decorations and shows but will be even more crowded. The following week may be less crowded but won't be the same experience. What should we do? We are planning on getting express passes for both weeks. Thanks for your advice!

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Apr 18, 2022 at 3:21 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Amber!

The holiday festivities usually last through the first few days into January. (Last year, the holiday festivities ran from Nov. 13, 2021, through Jan. 2, 2022 — and it's even lasted for as long as Jan. 6 in the past.) So while we don't know the exact dates for the 2022 holiday season, you likely won't miss out entirely, at least for one day (though it's not 100-percent guaranteed until dates are officially announced). Since you'll be getting Universal Express passes no matter which week you decide, we think it ultimately just comes down to personal preference — would you rather have your entire week filled with holiday festivities and tough out the crowds, or would you be fine with one day (maybe more, or none at all) out of your trip being filled with holiday festivities with potentially more time to work with since it wouldn't be as crowded as the week before?

Keep hopping!

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Undercover Tourist is the leading supplier of online discount tickets to Orlando, Florida-area attractions, including Walt Disney World® Resort, Universal Orlando Resort™, SeaWorld® Orlando, LEGOLAND® Florida Resort and more.

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