The heart-thumping highlight of the Halloween season is surviving the terrifying Halloween Horror Nights at Universal Studios Hollywood. The annual event that runs on select nights in the fall takes thousands of guests through movie set-quality haunted houses, scare zones and a Terror Tram. This preternaturally popular event does sell out for most nights. Luckily, you've got us as your fearless froggy guides so that you can experience as much as you dare at this must-do event!
Overview of Halloween Horror Nights Hollywood
Big news! Tickets for Halloween Horror Nights are on sale now! Before we get started, there's a big change in the language this year. Perhaps you noticed that we said "houses" instead of "mazes." The haunted house–style walk-through attractions formerly known as mazes in Hollywood are being renamed "houses." This brings the term consistent with Universal Orlando's name for these signature attractions. Can we have a moment of silence for the slashing of a SoCal colloquialism? RIP Maze. (Have no fear, though; the term lives on at Knott's Scary Farm.)
Let's go over the tickets, dates, a park plan and tips. Then we will uncover the houses, scare zones and other entertainment.
Halloween Horror Nights Hollywood Dates and Tickets
Halloween Horror Nights will kick off Sept. 8, 2022, and will continue on select nights through Oct. 31, 2022. Tickets are on sale now!
Halloween Horror Nights Hollywood 2022 Dates
Best Dates to Attend
Since most nights are likely to sell out, the crowds may be consistent. Generally, the earlier you go in the season, the lower the ticket price (the same goes for any dates after Halloween). Sunday and Thursday nights are usually the least expensive, and Saturdays tend to be the priciest (especially Halloween weekend), followed by Fridays. Most of the days do sell out, but the least crowded nights tend to be Sundays and Thursdays. Saturdays might be the easiest day to attend, but they cost more.
Halloween Horror Nights Hollywood 2022 Ticket Types and Prices
Tickets are on sale now. Halloween Horror Nights is a separate ticket from regular park admission. Universal Studios Hollywood also sells a Halloween Horror Nights Universal Express Pass (formerly called Front of Line Pass). The HHN Universal Express Pass is good for one-time Express access for each house and ride. It includes priority seating for the seated live show.
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Discount Halloween Horror Nights Hollywood tickets are on sale now!
Ticket prices vary per night. Keep in mind that ticket prices can continue to go up throughout the season, and even sell out for some nights. The key is to purchase as early as you can. Tickets purchased from Universal Studios Hollywood include early entry at 6 p.m.. You can save money over the gate price by buying online.
Want to save more? You can get discount general admission tickets or single-night HHN tickets from your favorite froggy friends. If you are not planning to arrive early and want to save up to $58 per ticket, our discount Halloween Horror Nights General Admission ticket is a screaming deal!
Here are the one-day ticket options available for 2022:
- Halloween Horror Nights General Admission - Range in price from $72 to $102 from Universal Studios.
- Halloween Horror Nights General Admission from Undercover Tourist - Range in price from $65.77 to $93.18. (Same ticket as above but cheaper and without early entry.)
- Halloween Horror Nights Universal Express - Range in price from $179 to $289 and allows one-time express access to each house, ride and attraction.
- Halloween Horror Nights Universal Express Unlimited - Range in price from $219 to $329 and allows unlimited express access to each house, ride and attraction per day.
- Halloween Horror Nights After 2 p.m. Day/Night - Range in price from $112 to $154 and allows admission to the park at 2 p.m. and same-day evening admission to Halloween Horror Nights.
- Halloween Horror Nights After 2 p.m. Day/Night Universal Express - Range in price from $219 to $349 and allows admission to the park at 2 p.m. and same-day evening admission to Halloween Horror Nights. Ticket includes one-time express access to each ride, attraction and seated show during the day PLUS one-time express access to each house/ride/attraction during Halloween Horror Nights.
The After 2 p.m. Day/Night tickets allow you to visit daytime attractions, some of which will be closed during Halloween Horror Nights Hollywood. Since Secret Life Of Pets, Despicable Me Minion Mayhem, Kung Fu Panda, Studio Tour, Wizarding World and shows are typically closed for Halloween Horror Nights, the combo ticket might be of interest to you if you have not yet experienced these attractions. There is usually a check-in point near the Box Office so you can get a wristband to stay in the park after it closes to the public.
When you purchase the Universal Express ticket online via Universal, an option to upgrade to Universal Express Unlimited for an additional fee pops up (if available)! There is a Universal Express Unlimited ticket option on the main menu, as well.
Frequent Fear Passes include:
- Halloween Horror Nights Frequent Fear Pass - $199 and allows users to experience the scares over and over with General Admission to this year’s Halloween Horror Nights for up to 27 nights.
- Halloween Horror Nights Ultimate Fear Pass - $329 and allows users to experience the scares over and over to this year’s Halloween Horror Nights for access to ALL nights.
Special Experiences — R.I.P. Tour
For a killer experience, spring for the R.I.P. Tour - $319 to $449. The 2022 R.I.P. Tour offers the following:
- Admission to Halloween Horror Nights (no daytime admission)
- Guided walking tour of the event
- One-time R.I.P. entry into each house as well as select rides and attractions while on the tour with a guide (based on tour itinerary)
- Reserved seating at a live show (based on tour itinerary) while on tour with R.I.P. Guide.
- Express UNLIMITED access (per day) to select rides, houses and attractions
- Complimentary valet parking (one vehicle).
- Special VIP entrance to Universal Studios Hollywood where you will receive your commemorative R.I.P. credentials and lanyard.
- Special interactive themed photo opportunities with scare actors.
- Gourmet dinner (alcoholic beverages excluded) in the private VIP dining room.
- Access to cash bar locations available during the tour (must be 21 years old or older to purchase and consume alcoholic beverages with a valid photo ID).
Arrive at R.I.P. Reception 30 minutes early. Tours are mixed parties with up to 12 people per tour. Guests under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult at all times while taking part in any R.I.P. Tour. Plan to arrive 30 minutes prior to your scheduled tour time. HHN Universal Express tickets can sell out scary-fast, so buy them well in advance. Tickets purchased online through Universal allow for Early Entry at 6 p.m. In 2019, these times shifted earlier as the season progressed, so keep hopping back for updates throughout the fall season because we continually make updates based on Universal's changes. We definitely recommend entering during Early Entry to experience the shortest waits of the night if your ticket permits it! The actual event starts at 7 p.m., but Early Entry houses open at 6:15 p.m.
Are you a Universal Studios pass member? Annual pass members can take advantage of special pass member pricing for themselves and friends for some tickets. You can check out available deals here.
Halloween Horror Nights Hollywood Park Plan
One of the most terrifying parts of Halloween Horror Nights Hollywood is not getting to experience all of the houses because of the lines. Most Universal Halloween Horror Nights sell out. Save your terror for the houses and cut the lines like Michael Myers' knife with a Halloween Horror Nights Front of the Line ticket. Buy in advance because Universal only offers a very limited number of Universal Express passes for each night, and they sell out as quickly as the potential victims flee Michael Myers with a knife.
You can get a jumpstart on the fear … oops, we mean fun! The event usually begins at 7 p.m. and ends at either 1 a.m. or 2 a.m., depending on the night. You can arrive early at 6 p.m. for early admission to get your heart thumping even sooner with access to some of the most popular houses, which open at 6:15 p.m. You will be given a wristband so that you can stay in the park as it closes and other guests are filtered out.
There are usually two or three houses and the Terror Tram open during Early Entry. Early Entry houses are usually in the Lower Lot and Backlot. Even those lines get long during Early Entry, so you'll want to arrive as soon as you can and make your way to the houses. People with the After 2 p.m. ticket have an advantage in being able to line up earlier than the Early Entry guests. Arriving early can save your night because you can visit several houses before the event officially begins and then move onto the other houses as other guests make their way down the escalators. There are a few pros and cons to early arrival.
- If you do not like scare zones or the dark, you can start your night much more gently.
- You start in the light.
- Experience shorter lines for at least an hour.
- You can get through more houses and maybe even do a favorite house twice.
- You can make it an earlier night.
- The scare zones are not open until 7 p.m.
- There is a less eerie/dramatic effect walking into the park.
- You might miss the Opening Scaremony in the Upper Lot (Universal may close that area to just the people entering the park by 6:30 p.m. and no amount of begging or pleading will get you in from other areas of the park).
Having Universal Express means no stress. You can easily do it all in any order you want, even if you do not arrive early — although arriving early can mean doing some houses twice. Just do not scan the Universal Express Pass the first time you go through, and then use the pass later when there is a line you want to skip. With Early Entry and Universal Express, you can hit all of the Early Entry houses before 7 p.m. If you have R.I.P., then you have unlimited Universal Express access. Alternatively, Universal Express can allow you the time to watch the Opening Scaremony and not have to arrive early.
Universal no longer distributes lanyards for Universal Express. Instead, you have to pull the paper ticket (about the size of a credit card) out each time to have it scanned. Bring a lanyard with a clear plastic pouch to make your life toadally easier, or wear clothing with a secure pocket. Universal also sells lanyards. We bought a lanyard in 2019 and brought it back in 2021. It was well worth it. We put two tickets back to back in it for easy scanning at each house and ride.
If you can’t get Universal Express and you miss Early Entry, save the year-round rides for after you have done your favorite houses and scare zones (you can ride the rides any other day of the year).
The heart of Halloween Horror Nights is in the Lower Lot and usually the Backlot. Due to filming, the Backlot did not have houses last year. We will see if they return for 2022. When the Backlot is in action, there's a not-so-short walk (with scare zones along the way) to the houses in the Metropolitan Sets. There is alternate transportation for people who need it (behind the Jurassic Park area).
A longer line does not always represent the quality of the house or a must-see. A house based on a popular show can get a long line, but it doesn't mean it's the best house. Sometimes we find that the houses we are least excited about are among our favorites, and the ones we most look forward to are not at the top of our list. Last year we most looked forward to The Haunting of Hill House, but we enjoyed The Bride of Frankenstein Lives (which had a much shorter wait) more. But all houses are usually pretty good. Try as many as you can and do not stress if you miss one.
Download the Universal Studios Hollywood app so that you can check wait times and showtimes. Select Halloween Horror Nights from the pull-down menu to access the wait times and food options. There are also displays throughout the park for status updates.
Complete everything you want to do while you are down in the Lower Lot and then move back up after that. If special menu items are in those areas, so you might want to grab a bite while you are down there, as well. You don’t want to spend valuable time going up and down the four long escalators to and from the Lower Lot more than once in each direction.
Here's a video of the highlights of Halloween Horror Nights 2021:
Halloween Horror Nights Hollywood Haunted Houses
Universal has started announcing the houses for Halloween Horror Nights 2022! There will be eight houses total. Keep hopping back as more houses are revealed!
Scarecrow: The Reaping
Creative Director John Murdy announced a new haunted house for Hollywood during Midsummer Scream. More details to come, but this house is based on a past haunted house at Universal Orlando ... but this time there's a new story and a new character looming ...
The Weeknd: After Hours Nightmare
Prepare to enter the twisted mind of musical artist The Weeknd in an all-new haunted house. He and his sadistic squad will stalk you in a living nightmare inspired by his "After Hours" album. Can you escape bandaged maniacs who perform extreme plastic surgery, a grotesque mannequin masquerade and more?
The Horrors of Blumhouse
A new maze features the horror-comedy "Freaky" and the new supernatural thriller "The Black Phone." The Horrors of Blumhouse transports guests into an alternate dimension where the scares are real and the stakes are life or death. In The Black Phone (which hit theaters June 24), “The Grabber” is a demented magician best known for making people disappear ... permanently. You will find yourself trapped in his “fun” house where the sound of ghostly voices whisper hints on how to escape, but you must tread carefully to outwit and outrun “The Grabber’s” twisted magic.
Freaky challenges guests to outrun serial killer “The Butcher” who has switched bodies with a high school girl after being cursed by The La Dola Dagger, an ancient Aztec blade. You will learn firsthand that looks can be deceiving as you encounter the sweet-looking teen who is actually “The Butcher,” determined to hunt for the next victim.
The franchise's newest trilogy may be coming to an end with the release of "Halloween Ends" on Oct. 14, but you'll be able to go back to where it all began in this new haunted house. Based on the original 1978 slasher film, you'll make your way through Michael Myers' dilapidated home and other iconic scenes from the movie. Will you get slashed by the knife-wielding killer?
Universal Monsters: Legends Collide
Universal Pictures' biggest monster icons, The Wolf Man, Dracula and the Mummy, will join forces in an all-new house. The trio is seeking the Amulet of Ra, which the Wolf Man believes will lift his curse, while Dracula and the Mummy plan to use it against humankind. Who will get to it first, and can you survive the battle between them? The musician SLASH will collaborate on an original score for this house.
Halloween Horror Nights Hollywood Scare Zones
We frogs jump (even higher than usual) in terror at Halloween Horror Nights — usually when we least expect it in a scare zone. Be prepared for the unexpected ghoul to emerge from the darkness. All scare zones were in the Upper Lot in 2021.
Take a look at the 2021 scare zones (we'll update once we learn more about the 2022 scare zones!):
A diabolical gang of maniacs with chainsaws strike terror in the hearts of those entering Halloween Horror Nights. The boundaries between this scare zone and Demon City are pretty blurred, with the sound of chainsaws buzzing present in both spaces.
The New York streets have gone to hell. A diabolical nightclub called Inferno serves demons from the Underworld. These bloodthirsty demonic clubgoers prowl the streets looking for their next victims. You cannot miss the tall stilt walkers, or should we say stilt runners? They are fast and they are coming after you.
Universal Monsters: Silver Scream Queenz
You can find the first all-female scare zone adjacent to the "Bride of Frankenstein Lives" house. Well, it's not all female, as an 8-foot-tall Frankenstein's Monster accompanies them. You may encounter the Bride of Frankenstein, Anck-Su-Namun from "The Mummy," Dracula’s Daughter and She-Wolf of London all returned from the grave.
Halloween Horror Nights Hollywood Entertainment
Here are the must-see shows, moments and experiences outside of the actual scare zones and houses.
Halloween Horror Nights Hollywood Opening Scaremony
If you are in the Upper Lot just before 7 p.m., catch the Opening “Scaremony,” when Universal releases the monsters and you find yourself immersed in your first terrifying scare zone of the night. You must be in place before 6:30 p.m. or you won't get in. The downside to accessing Early Entry may mean missing the Opening Scaremony, but the benefits of getting the houses done and being ahead of the masses may outweigh the downside in our humble opinion. It's really hard to see anything unless you are up close, but once Universal unleashes the monsters, they'll crawl through the crowds to find you.
In 2021, the entrance to the Demon City Scare Zone was more narrow than usual, making it even harder to see. Team members discouraged us from waiting for the Opening Scaremony and pushed us toward the Lower Lot or the Terror Tram to keep things moving.
Terror Tram at Halloween Horror Nights Hollywood
The Terror Tram took a break in 2019, but returned for 2021 ... and is confirmed to be returning for 2022! The tram that takes guests on a daytime Studio Tour of the Backlot turns into a Terror Tram at night, transporting guests to scenes of unspeakable horror as they wander the Backlot past the Bates Motel, Psycho House and airplane crash site from "War of the Worlds." The regular Studio Tour is not operating during Hollywood Horror Nights hours.
We do not yet know the Terror Tram theme for 2022. In 2021 it was the Ultimate Purge. The most iconic Purgers from all of "The Purge" films took over and ran rampant. These masked and costumed marauders were out to get anyone caught outside during Purge hours. If you chose to board the Terror Tram and ride right into the Purge, there were no laws, no rules and no escape.
Outrageous Live Entertainment
In the past, the Jabbawockeez presented a unique mix of dance, special effects, music and humor. The theme is not revealed for 2022. But Universal promises you'll lose yourself in live entertainment filled with diabolical surprises. It's a place to rest your tired flippers and enjoy some AC, especially on a hot night like the night we visited.
Rides Open During Halloween Horror Nights Hollywood
Some of the regular rides dare to operate during Halloween Horror Nights. If you need to escape from the houses, get your thrills on Transformers 3-D, Revenge of the Mummy, Jurassic World or the Simpsons Ride. In the past, the Wizarding World was closed during Halloween Horror Nights, but in 2021, Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey and Flight of the Hippogriff remained open! We are still waiting on official word about what 2022 has in store. As mentioned above, the normal Studio Tour will not be running. Instead, you get the Terror Tram. Regular shows, Kung Fu Panda and Despicable Me Minion Mayhem are closed. The new Secret Life of Pets ride will not be open.
Hogwarts Castle had special projections for the event in 2021 with the Deathly Hallows symbols forming in front of your eyes. Listen for hissing voices. We do not speak Parseltongue, so don't ask us what they are saying.
Halloween Horror Nights Hollywood Food and Merchandise
There are always treats to die for at Halloween Horror Nights. Keep an eye out for devilish delights and concocted drinks in store for you. The park map shows themed dining locations in the Upper and Lower Lots. Here are the 2021 offerings, but this year's concoctions may be toadally different.
In the Upper Lot, you could fill up at:
- Freakshow Vin Bistro in French Bistro
- Little Cocina food tent and Dia de los Muertos Bar — This area had photo-ops, live monsters and a festive atmosphere. A great addition to Halloween Horror Nights!
- Scare up some spooky treats at Minions Monster Cafe.
In the Lower Lot:
- The Terror Bar — The shortest lines for snacks and drinks in this glow bar early in the night.
- Leatherface's Texas Family Barbeque — Get your BBQ spare ribs, pulled chicken, Texas chili & cheese nachos, a 22-inch monster dog, bloody funnel fingers and Texas Tea or frozen Jack and Coke.
Most restaurants and shops offer themed treats such as decorated cookies and cupcakes. Additional dining locations are found around the park. The Universal Studios Hollywood app has more details for the day of your visit.
The following dining locations may be open for your visit:
- Three Broomsticks
- Hog's Head
- Butterbeer carts
- Starbucks Upper and Lower Lot
- Krusty Burger
- Cletus' Chicken Shack
- Luigi's Pizza
- Moe's Tavern
- Lard Lad's Donut
- Phineas Q. Butterfat's Ice Cream
- Suds McDuff's Hot Dogs — "Dufftober Fest" at Duff Gardens and Suds McDuff's
- Panda Express
- Studio Cafe
- Mummy Eats
- Jurassic Cafe
- Isla Nu-Bar
- Many temporary snack locations throughout the park and near houses, including the ones with a long walk.
You can purchase a souvenir refillable Coca-Cola Freestyle souvenir cup. It's $17 for one or $16 each if you buy two. It's refillable through the day (every 10 minutes). You can add on an extra day of refills for $10.
Some Universal CityWalk restaurants offer discounts before you enter HHN. Re-entry is allowed. (Get a hand stamp when you exit).
Halloween Horror Nights Merchandise
You'll find shirts, glow items and other items for sale. We always return with our Halloween Horror Nights lanyard to hold our Express Passes.
Halloween Horror Nights Hollywood Tips
1. Leave the Kids at Home
This terrifying event is recommended for very brave 13-year-olds and up. Children under 13 must be accompanied by an adult. Of course, in 2019, we did come across the cutest Ghostbuster who was brave enough to visit the house for his most-favorite movie. You know your kids, so use your best judgment. If horror movies are their jam, then they may be able to handle it. The teenage years are a good time to visit for most kids.
2. Leave Your Costumes and Masks at Home
Keep in mind that no costume masks or costumes are allowed (although we have previously seen leniency with some Harry Potter robes)! No horseplay or items that resemble weapons are allowed.
3. Dress Light and Stay Hydrated
Be sure to dress for the weather so you will be comfortable (layers are your friend). Early September dates can be surprisingly hot the whole night. You may bring an umbrella if the forecast calls for rain. Wear comfortable shoes. You’ll find that there is a lot of walking — our devices measured 13,000 steps in past years but only about 9,000 in 2021.
Stay hydrated — all of that screaming can dry you out like a mummy! (You can purchase water bottles but you can also get free water at restaurants with fountain drinks.)
4. Only Bring the Necessities
We recommend traveling light, especially since you'll be walking through crowded houses and being spooked in scare zones. You wouldn't want anything spilling out of your bag or pockets if you fall to the ground ;)
Also note that you cannot bring in food or drink — not even water. Do not bring gum into the park either. (You can now buy alcohol in Springfield USA and at other locations.)
5. Eat Early
Arrive with a full belly if you can. Food lines are scary long! You don't want to waste precious time waiting for food.
6. Follow the Rules or Beware
You may not record, take flash photos, or bring laser pens, food and drink into the houses. Do not touch or harm the actors or jump the lines unless you want to be sent out of the park in a body bag without your ticket.
7. Need to Escape?
Re-entry is allowed so hold onto your park ticket and ask about a hand stamp at the exit!
8. Be Aware of Accessible Options
If someone in your party uses a wheelchair, most standard wheelchairs and Electronic Convenience Vehicles (ECVs) can go through the houses. Ask an attendant if you need assistance. Any guests who use Universal's Attraction Assistance Pass (AAP) should know that you will go to a designated location to pick up the AAP. The line can be long just to get the pass! Arrive early and take care of it as soon as you can. Then you may receive return times for the houses. There is alternative transportation available for those with physical disabilities to access these houses and to the Lower Lot. The Lower Lot drop-off and pick-up location may be near Dino Play.
Follow these rules and tips, and you will survive Halloween Horror Nights at Universal Studios Hollywood. Most of all, have fun! Be sure to hop back for more updates about the 2022 season as the scary details are released!
Have a question about Halloween Horror Nights Hollywood? Share it in the comments below! Get a hop on discount Universal Studios Hollywood tickets any time with Undercover Tourist.