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Let's-a Go! How To Access Super Nintendo World at Universal Studios Hollywood

by Leap on February 27, 2023 33 Los Angeles

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Our entire frog squad recently visited Super Nintendo World at Universal Studios Hollywood, and our tadpoles absolutely loved it! Since the land is new, the park has been very busy with other Super Mario fans (just as excited as Tad) since it opened Feb. 17, 2023. If you're looking to visit Super Nintendo World during this hoppin' time at the park, there are multiple ways to gain access to the land. With that being said, let's hop to it and break down the different kinds of Universal ticket options available to access Super Nintendo World, as well as the Virtual Line needed to access the land with general admission to the park.

Let's-a Go! How To Access Super Nintendo World at Universal Studios Hollywood - entrance

Overview of Getting Into Super Nintendo World Hollywood

As we previously mentioned, there are many ways to gain access to Super Nintendo World inside Universal Studios Hollywood. Currently, there are four different ways to get inside the colorful, new land.

How can you visit Super Nintendo World?

The first, and most common (especially for those who like to save green like us frogs), option is joining the Virtual Line reservation system to enter the land later in the day. This, of course, is available with a general admission ticket and comes with some caveats that we will get into shortly. Another route you can go if you want guaranteed access to the land is purchasing a special ticket in addition to regular admission. These special ticket options include the Universal Express Pass, Univeral Express Unlimited Pass, the VIP Experience ticket and Early Access ticket.

Below, we will explain the difference between each of these entry and ticket options. You can use this guide to decide which suits you and your frog family best! We'll even throw in some tips for maximizing your frogtastic visit.

Join the Virtual Line

Since Super Nintendo World is a new addition to the park, entry to the land is sometimes (more often than not, at this point) determined by a virtual line reservation system. When the park holds a large number of guests, a Virtual Line reservation becomes a requirement to enter the land. If you would like to visit Super Nintendo World but also want to save some money and stick to general admission, this is the option for you.

How to Access Super Nintendo World - Virtual Line Venues

How do I know if I need to join the Virtual Line?

Guests can figure out if they need to join the Virtual Line to visit the land by tapping on the Virtual Line box located on the home screen of the Universal Studios Hollywood app. After tapping the box, check the tab labeled Virtual Line Venues to see which attractions are operating on a Virtual Line that day. If Super Nintendo World does not appear as one of the Virtual Line venues, you do not need to join the Virtual Line. If it does, then you need to join the Virtual Line.

How do I join the Virtual Line?

This option is available on a first-come, first-served basis, and time slots can fill up extremely quickly. Keep in mind, you can only join the Virtual Line if you are inside Universal Studios Hollywood, so make sure to be in the park as close to opening as possible when trying to join. The last time we visited, we attempted to join the queue on a weekday, an hour after Universal opened (at 10 a.m.) — leaving us only with Virtual Line time slot options from 5 p.m. and later (and we had a small group — larger groups may be even harder to accommodate).

How to Access Super Nintendo World - Super Nintendo World Virtual Line

To join the Virtual Line, click on the Virtual Line box on the Universal Studios Hollywood app, then tap on Virtual line Venues. Once you see Super Nintendo World as one of the venues, tap on it and select the Virtual Line Pass button. Next to this button is the word Reserve. Tap on either of those two phrases, then input your party size to find an available time slot to return. Once you have confirmed your desired time slot to visit the land, you will receive a QR code needed to enter the land at the time of your reservation.

You can also join the Virtual Line through the physical kiosks at the park. There are a few located in the Upper Lot near Despicable Me: Minion Mayhem and more in the Lower Lot to the right of Transformers: The Ride. However, these kiosks may close early once the Virtual Line availability closes for the day. If you are unable to join the Virtual Line (through either your mobile device or at a physical kiosk) early in the day, you can continue to check the Universal Studios Hollywood app throughout your visit to see if any available time slots have opened up.

How do I enter the land with my Virtual Line reservation?

How to Access Super Nintendo World - Virtual Line Reservation

As many aspects of accessing this new land are still changing, entering the land can be a little tricky regardless of which method you're using. Directly in front of Transformers: The Ride, is the entry area for all guests trying to access the land, including parties with Virtual Line reservations, Express Pass and Express Unlimited Pass holders and VIP Experience tours.

Once your Virtual Line time slot has arrived, make your way to the entry area. As of now, there is no formal line to enter, but you cannot crowd the entry area unless your scheduled time has come. If utilizing a special ticket, don't worry about that aspect. Once you show your QR code to one of the attendants at the entry area, be prepared to have it scanned when you approach the warp pipe entrance to the land.

Buy An Early Access Ticket

One way to gain guaranteed access to Super Nintendo World is by purchasing an Early Access ticket, which allows a guest to enter the land one hour prior to the park's opening. The Early Access ticket is sold in limited quantities and can only be used for a preselected date set in advance. Ranging from $20 to $30, this add-on ticket is a frogtastic, and still affordable, option for those who like to avoid long lines and heavy crowds. Don't froget — you will still need a general admission ticket (or valid annual pass) to enter the park!

What can I do with the Early Access ticket?

Utilizing an Early Access ticket is definitely useful if you are determined to explore the land in its entirety during your visit. The ticket allows you access to everything in the land during the early access hour, such as meeting the characters in the land, playing the interactive key games, visiting the Toadstool Cafe without reservations and even experiencing Mario Kart: Bowser's Challenge! There is no limit to how long you can remain in the land after the ticketed hour is over. However, you cannot use the early access ticket to reenter the land once the park officially opens for the day. We recommend getting all of your priority experiences in the land out of the way during the early access hour since the land floods with people once the park officially opens.

If you purchase the Early Access ticket for Super Nintendo World, you get one-time Express use for the Studio Tour (valid if used before 11:00 am).

How do I use my Early Access Ticket?

If you purchase an Early Access ticket, enter the park through the main entrance (the same way you would enter the park at opening time). Don't froget to have both your general admission ticket and Early Access ticket ready! Once you pass the security check at the entrance, attendants will ask to see your general admission and Early Access ticket. After confirming your tickets, you will be directed to the front gate where your general admission ticket will be scanned. Once you are inside the park, an employee will ask to see your Early Access ticket once more, then allow you to walk toward the escalators leading to the Lower Lot of the park. Right before the escalator area, park employees will scan your Early Access ticket for entry to Super Nintendo World. From there, you can go down the escalators and walk over to the warp pipe to enter the land.

Get a Universal Express Pass

Both the Universal Express Pass and the Universal Unlimited Express Pass are more expensive, yet more convenient alternatives to general admission tickets. Although purchasing these can bump up your grand total significantly (especially if you're buying passes for the whole frog family), you are able to reap the benefits of these tickets throughout your entire day at the park.

What does the Express Pass include?

The Universal Express Pass includes general admission to the park, as well as one-time (per day) front-of-the-line line access to each ride, attraction and show. As a bonus, it also includes one-time (per day) reservation-free entry into Super Nintendo World during your visit.

What does the Unlimited Express Pass include?

If you want even more perks, you can upgrade your Express Pass to an Unlimited Express Pass while in the park, which provides unlimited front-of-the-line privileges for all attractions and shows. It also provides one-time (per day) access to Super Nintendo World. Keep in mind that the Express Pass and Unlimited Express Pass do not include access to the ride in the land, Mario Kart: Bowser's Challenge.

Book the VIP Theme Park Experience

A cheaper alternative to the VIP Experience, this secret tour is something that you may be able to upgrade to at the VIP entrance. You cannot purchase this in advance (only at the front gate). It does not include the trolley backlot tour, but it does include the Studio Tour, lunch at either Krusty Burger or The Three Broomsticks, and Unlimited Express for all attractions, including Mario Kart: Bowser's Challenge. This ticket also provides unlimited access to Super Nintendo World.

The VIP Theme Park Experience ticket is the only package, aside from the VIP Experience, that includes unlimited access to both Super Nintendo World and its attraction, Mario Kart: Bowser's Challenge. Access to this package is limited, so price and availability can vary per day. You should arrive with a valid ticket, regardless. If you are interested, ask if an upgrade is available at the VIP entrance. The day we visited during spring break, it would have cost $110 per person to upgrade our Universal Express ticket to the VIP Theme Park Experience.

Make a Toadstool Cafe Reservation

For those of you looking to enjoy some fine cuisine in the Mushroom Kingdom while in Super Nintendo World, you can secure dining and entry to the land all in one reservation. If a guest has a valid Toadstool Cafe reservation, they can enter the land without a Virtual Line time slot or any special ticket.

You will see signage with QR codes linking to the restaurant's reservation system immediately outside the lands main entrance and in front of the café, until reservations are full for the day. However, you don't have to wait until you're in the park to try and get a spot at the cafe. Here's the link to reserve! You don't even have to be inside the park to reserve! Aim to make your reservations around 7:30 a.m. for same day only, since the restaurant is usually fully booked by the late morning or early afternoon (around 10 a.m. the last time we visited). We recommend reserving a dining time in the afternoon or evening because mid-morning is the busiest in the land. Go enjoy the short lines elsewhere in the park in the morning.

Book the VIP Experience

The VIP Experience is the priciest ticket option for Universal guests. Nonetheless, it has grown in popularity amongst Universal guests recently due to the toadally awesome benefits it offers to Super Nintendo World fans.

What is the VIP Experience?

The VIP Experience consists of an exclusive tour of the theme park and studio backlot, guided by a Universal Studios Hollywood tour guide. Up to 18 guests can participate in a single tour and children must be at least 5 years old to attend (and at least 17 years old to attend without an accompanying adult). The package starts at $369 per ticket, and you can even save some green with us frogs. This may be worthwhile if you want to enjoy the park in an unlimited capacity for your whole stay.

What is included in the VIP Experience?

The ticket includes general 1-day park admission, a VIP gourmet meal, complimentary valet parking, light snacks and refreshments throughout the day and unlimited (per day) express access to each ride, attraction and show. For those who want complete access to Super Nintendo World, this is exactly the ticket for you. You can enjoy unlimited access to both Super Nintendo World and its attraction, Mario Kart: Bowser's Challenge.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are a few of the most frequently asked questions on how to access Super Nintendo World:

Will I be able to access the land utilizing an Attraction Assistance Pass (AAP)?

No. An Attraction Assistance Pass will not guarantee you entry to the land. You may only purchase a special ticket OR use the Virtual Line system to enter the land. Once inside the land though, the AAP is very hopful. It will allow you to access the Mario Kart: Bowser's Challenge ride. You will be given a return time to come back and experience the ride at a later time during the day.

Can I return to the warp pipe entrance of the land once I'm inside Super Nintendo World?

This depends on the crowd levels and crew present in the park that day. Over the course of several visits to the land, we have had different experiences with entering and exiting it. Some times we are allowed to exit the same way we came in and on other occasions, during crowded times, we were asked to exit through a different route. As of our most recent visit, we weren't allowed to exit through the main warp pipe entrance (and stop to take photos). However, this is subject to change.

Can I buy my general admission ticket separately from an Early Access ticket?

Yes! Although the Early Access ticket is only available for purchase directly through Universal, you can still buy a general admission ticket from us.

Tips for Maximizing Your Time In Super Nintendo World

How to Access Super Nintendo World - The view from Single Riders Line

  • Experience the ride, Mario Kart: Bowser's Challenge, immediately when you enter the land. It is the first thing that becomes crowded, even during the early access hour.
  • If someone in your group has a disability, they can qualify for an Attraction Assistance Pass (AAP). This pass will not grant you access to the land. However, if you enter the land by one of the above methods, you can receive a return time for Mario Kart, then you may exit the land and return at your designated time for the ride.
  • If you are a major foodie and must try the dishes at Toadstool Cafe, reserve your dining time in advance (even from your home) through the link we included in this post. This way, you can experience other parts of the park and still return to the land for your reservation with guaranteed dining.
  • If you buy an Early Access ticket, visit the cafe within the early access hour (before the park opens and reservations are required). The cafe is usually fully booked for the day by early afternoon.
  • Some interactive games take longer than others, therefore creating longer wait times to play. Aim to play the quicker games if you're in a rush, such as those hosted by Thwomp and Goomba. It is evident which key challenges have faster lines than others.
  • Character meet and greet queues are much emptier at the very start of the early access hour. This is your best shot at getting photos with them without getting cut off from the line.

Please note that things are always subject to change, especially access through the Virtual Line, which operates based on demand. 

Related: Our Guide to Super Nintendo World Hollywood

Keep hopping! 

Keep hopping, Leap!
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Mar 27, 2023 at 6:58 p.m. Jason Says...

Hey frogblog, thanks for all the great information!

We're heading there in a couple weeks, we have early access. Is there any way to get the power bands in advance, or just gain access in the early access window and go straight to the shop to pick one up?

Thanks again!

Mar 28, 2023 at 4:03 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jason!

If you're planning to be in the area the day before, you could purchase Power-Up Bands at the Universal Studio Store in CityWalk without having to enter the park. But if you won't be and would need to purchase them on the day of, then we'd recommend heading directly to the land (as the CityWalk gift store may not be open that early). There are special Power-Up Band kiosks inside the land, so you don't even have to go to the gift shop.

Keep hopping!


Mar 21, 2023 at 12:08 a.m. Lauren Says...


How early would you recommend arriving at the Park for those with Early Access passes? E.g.: If the Park opens at 8, and you have early access from 7-8, should you be at the park for 6:30 to allow time to go through security etc.

Mar 21, 2023 at 2:26 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Lauren!

Yes, we would recommend arriving by 6:30. Have fun!

Stay cool!


Mar 20, 2023 at 4:52 p.m. Sarah Says...

My family of four purchased early access tickets but they were sold out by the time another family member tried to get a ticket to join us. Will it be possible for me to use the virtual line system as soon as we enter the park (for early access) and reserve a time slot for later in the day for all 5 of us?

Mar 21, 2023 at 2:23 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Sarah!

Yes, you can reserve the virtual queue as well as use early access.

Stay cool!


Mar 16, 2023 at 5:44 a.m. Elaine Says...

We have an early access ticket booked… but we didn’t buy the regular admission ticket yet, and now it is “sold out”. Are we still able to buy tickets to universal for the day we have early access to Super Nintendo world booked?!

Mar 16, 2023 at 9:05 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Elaine!

Unfrogtunately, if it's showing "sold out" online, there likely wouldn't be any availability at the front gate either so you may not be able to purchase admission. We would recommend calling Guest Services at 800-864-8377 for further guidance.

Keep hopping!


Mar 15, 2023 at 4:01 p.m. Samantha Says...

Hi! We are going to Universal Hollywood on Saturday for the first time and we have purchased the Express Pass tickets. There was no early access Mario Land tickets left for that day. Can I still get in Early Access (1 hour before opening) with my Express pass or do I have to wait until regular park hours to use my Express pass? Thank you!

Mar 15, 2023 at 4:26 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Samantha!

You would have to wait until the official park opening to use your one-time Express Pass access for Super Nintendo World.

Keep hopping!


Mar 14, 2023 at 2:50 p.m. Tara Says...

Hi! Heading here in a few weeks. Read a post that once you enter through the tunnel to SNW you won’t have the opportunity to go back to the entrance location (tunnel & warp pipes) for photos, is this accurate? TIA!

Mar 14, 2023 at 3:25 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Tara!

It was like that during previews. However, we've been able to exit through the same tunnel warp pipe to get more pictures, so we think it should be fine! If anything, it may depend on crowd flow and team members' discretion.

Keep hopping!


Mar 14, 2023 at 4:34 a.m. Terry Says...

I do not see any ticket options for early access to Universal Studios Hollywood. Since you guys do not sell it, will it be accepted/valid if I buy general admission tickets through Undercover Tourist, but early access tickets through official Universal website or would it be best to buy both gen admission and early access through Universal website? Thanks!

Mar 14, 2023 at 7:59 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Terry!

Yes, the Early Access ticket is only available directly through Universal, but you can still buy a general admission ticket from us!

Keep hopping!


Mar 13, 2023 at 12:28 a.m. Birdita Says...

So we have our tickets all set though UCT, and Early Access tickets through UWH but wondering about Toadstool Cafe—we hope to get to Studio Tour before 11 to use Express Access but hope to eat at TC a little later in the day. When/how should we try to get reservation for TC?

Mar 14, 2023 at 4:09 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Birdita!

You'll want to get a reservation in person as early as possible, as reservations can fill up quickly. All you have to do is walk up to the attendant in front of the restaurant and give them your phone number and party size - you'll receive a text when you can return.

Keep hopping!


Mar 12, 2023 at 3:09 a.m. Claire Says...

We will need an AAP for my son. Do I still need to join the virtual queue?

Mar 15, 2023 at 11:03 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Claire!

The AAP will work for the ride, Mario Kart: Bowser's Challenge, but you would still need a virtual queue reservation (if in use) to enter the land.

Keep hopping!


Mar 10, 2023 at 6:12 a.m. dc Says...

If I buy a VIP pass, would it be over kill to also buy the early access to Nintendo world?

Mar 10, 2023 at 8:29 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi DC!

If you're going on the VIP tour, you don't need an Early Access ticket.

Stay cool!


Mar 8, 2023 at 7:20 a.m. Joanne Says...

What happens if we missed the early access? Can we still get in Super Mario land?

Mar 14, 2023 at 3:29 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Joanne!

You can use the Early Access ticket to enter Super Nintendo World at any point during the early hour (aka you don't have to get there exactly an hour before park open). However, once the park officially opens, it won't be honored past that point, but you could still join the Virtual Line to access the land.

Keep hopping!


Mar 5, 2023 at 3:45 a.m. Jayden Says...

If I buy an early access tickets to Mario land and an Express ticket , can I go to Mario land twice without reservation in the same day?

Mar 6, 2023 at 4:34 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jayden!

Yes, since you can purchase both an Early Access ticket and an Express ticket, you would be able to enter the land twice without a Virtual Line reservation (if in use).

Stay cool!


Mar 2, 2023 at 3:12 p.m. Amanda Says...

Given that Nintendo is now open, how would you fit that in to your 1-day plan? We have Universal Express, but not early access. Early access is sold out. We want to eat at Toadstool Cafe.

Should we still hit Harry Potter and then head to Nintendo since we can jump the queue with Express Pass?

If we are able to get a reservation at Toadstool, are we able to leave Nintendo and come back to it later and skip the queue again due to the reservation?

Mar 9, 2023 at 8:33 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Amanda!

We suggest that you enter the land as early as you can to get a reservation for Toadstool Cafe first thing because it can fill up early for the remainder of the day.

Stay cool!


Mar 9, 2023 at 5:02 p.m. Teresa Says...

Hi, I have the same question as Amanda - if we enter Nintendo land via Express Pass (no early access), and then get a reservation at the Toadstool Cafe for much later in the day, will they allow us back in for the reservation without getting in the Virtual Line?

Mar 10, 2023 at 8:33 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Teresa!

Yes, you would be able to re-enter with your Toadstool Cafe reservation.

Keep hopping!


Mar 2, 2023 at 3 a.m. Christy Says...

Early access is not available for the date in June we plan to go yet (if they still do it then), but if we buy Universal tickets through you, are we still able to purchase early access through the Universal website to use with the tickets?

Mar 2, 2023 at 10:10 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Christy!

Yes! If Universal is still selling Early Access tickets for dates in June, you can purchase those separately through Universal and still purchase tickets from us :)

Keep hopping!


Mar 4, 2023 at 3:31 a.m. Christy Says...

Great, thanks!

Feb 27, 2023 at 5:12 p.m. Jason Miller Says...

How does the early access to Nintendo World work getting down there? Is there an entrance at the park that says early access that lets you in front of the rest of the people lined up for rope drop?

Feb 27, 2023 at 4:52 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jason!

Not to worry! There are a few signs (and team members) along the way to direct you to the right place. Essentially, you'll enter through the main entrance as usual and once you pass security, park attendants will ask to see both your general admission and Early Access tickets. After confirming your tickets, you're directed to the front gate where they scan your general admission ticket. Once inside the park, a team member will ask to see your Early Access ticket again, and then allow you to walk toward the escalators down to the Lower Lot. Right before the escalators, they'll scan the Early Access ticket and you can go down the escalators and through the warp pipe into the land.

Keep hopping!


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