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The Ultimate Guide on When to Use Universal Express

by Leap on June 19, 2018 694 Orlando

Univesal Express Pass - Pinterest Header

Thrills! Action! Transformers! Butterbeer! We always look forward to hopping down to the Universal Orlando Resort. Between Universal Studios Florida , Universal's Islands of Adventure and Universal's Volcano Bay, we have plenty of places to play. One of the ways we experience more and wait in line less is with the Universal Express Pass. Universal's skip-the-lines access is a big help in the parks, especially on crowded days. But it isn't free — unless you stay on-site at select Universal hotels. (And by the way, we offer discounts on rooms at all Universal hotels.) Understanding how and when to use the Universal Express pass is your key to a great visit. This post explains everything you need to know!

Universal Express Overview | How It Works | Pass Options | Cost | When to Use Express Passes | Other Ways to Save Time

What Is Universal Express Pass?

Universal Express Pass Queue - The Amazing Adventures of Spider ManUniversal Express allows you to skip the lines at most Universal Studios Florida and Universal's Islands of Adventure attractions. (It is a separate purchase at Universal's Volcano Bay.)

In a change from the past, Universal now offers Universal Express passes for all Wizarding World of Harry Potter rides, including Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey and Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts. The only ride that does not have it is Pteranodon Flyers at Universal's Islands of Adventure.

You can see the Universal Express rides along with wait times and park plans on our handy dandy FREE Orlando Planning App for iPhone.

How Universal Express Pass Works

When you approach a ride with Universal Express, show your pass to the attendant, who will scan it and let you enter the Express Pass queue. Closer to the ride loading area (this distance varies by ride), the Universal Express Pass queue will merge with the regular line. At this point, your pass will be scanned again. You will still likely wait at this point, but it is usually five to 10 minutes long.

Know that Universal Express Pass is not a group pass. Everyone in your party will need his or her own Universal Express Pass. Also, the passes are non-transferrable.

Universal Orlando Single Rider Lines

Universal Express Pass - Transformers Queue

Single Rider Lines are often even faster than Universal Express pass lines. If you don't mind splitting up your party on the ride, you can experience the most popular rides much quicker. The Single Rider Lines actually goes straight to the loading area. You and your party will be together in the queue, but you will split up on the ride as you fill an empty seat.

Single Rider Lines at Universal Studios Florida:

Single Rider Lines at Universal's Islands of Adventure:

Keep in mind that both Universal Express and Single Rider Lines skip major portions of the queue. We get that the point of this whole thing is to spend less time waiting. However, some of the queues are spectacular and help set up the ride story line. If it's your first time on Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts and Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey, we recommend experiencing the regular queue. If you've been there, done that, take the route that's best for you.

Universal Express Pass Options

When to Use Universal Express - Incredible Hulk Coaster

There are two types of Universal Express passes:

  • Universal Express Unlimited
  • Universal Express Pass

You can use Universal Express Unlimited Pass an unlimited number of times at participating rides and attractions each day that your pass is valid. You can use the Universal Express Pass one time per ride each day that your pass is valid.

Universal Express is available for one park per day or both parks per day. It can be purchased online ahead of time through Universal or at the parks themselves. We like this flexibility. Sometimes you don't know you want Express Pass until you're already in the parks!

Universal offers separate passes for Universal's Volcano Bay. These are per day, and you have the option of skipping the virtual lines at select rides and attractions, or you can pay more to skip the virtual lines at all rides and attractions inside the water park.

How Much Is Universal Express?

Universal Express Pass - Hard Rock Hotel

It depends. If you are staying on-site at one of Universal's premier and preferred resort hotels, Universal Express Unlimited is free for every day of your visit. That includes your date of check-in and departure. The value of this cannot be underestimated, especially during busier times. Yes, hotels are priced based on expected crowds. If you are considering purchasing Express Pass, you should do the math and see if it makes sense to stay on-site. It is often still cheaper to stay on-site with Unlimited Express versus stay off-site and purchase Unlimited Express separately. You get the added benefit of being so close to the parks when you stay on-site, access to all of the fabulous pools, plush rooms and other on-site amenities.

Universal Orlando Hotels That Offer Universal Express Unlimited:

Universal Premier Hotels

Universal Preferred Hotels

Universal's Cabana Bay Beach ResortLoews Sapphire Falls Resort, Universal's Aventura Resort and Universal’s Endless Summer Resort – Surfside Inn and Suites & Dockside Inn and Suites (opening August 2019) do not offer Universal Express Unlimited, but they do offer Early Park Admission to select rides inside Universal's Islands of Adventure or Universal Studios Florida and Universal's Volcano Bay water theme park along with the other two.

It used to be that you had to visit a kiosk at the hotels to get your Universal Express Unlimited, but now your hotel room key works as your pass. Keep in mind that you do still need regular admission to enter the park.

How to Use Universal Express - Seuss Landing

If you are not staying on-site and wish to purchase Universal Express passes, the cost varies by day and expected crowds. So during peak times, prices will be higher. You can purchase these online in advance or while you are in the parks. Keep in mind that Universal Express could sell out, but this is likely only during the very busiest times. Universal Express is separate from regular admission. It doesn't matter which tickets you have purchased. You can add on Universal Express as needed. (While we sell authentic, discount Universal tickets, we do not currently offer Universal Express Pass.) If you aren't sure you will need or want the passes, we recommend you hold off purchasing until you arrive.

Unlike most tickets, Universal Express is date specific. So you will need to know what days you plan to be in the parks and book directly with Universal or wait until you are in the parks.

When to Use Universal Express Passes

Universal Express Pass - Dudley Do-Right's Ripsaw Falls

Finally, we get to the most important part of the post — when to use Universal Express. Our recommendations are fairly simple.

1. Anytime it's free.

OK, it's never really free, free, but if you are staying on-site, you aren't paying for it directly. Even if the parks aren't super crowded, you will still save time by using Universal Express passes. And there is nothing better than skipping the regular line.

2. When the parks are expected to be super busy. 

When our Crowd Calendar predicts crowds of 8, 9 and 10s, these are prime times to consider Express Passes. You might even consider it on 7s if you are particularly crowd averse. If you're visiting during the peak of summer or around the major holidays (especially the week between Christmas and New Year), you should give this serious consideration.

3. If you only have a day and want to see as much as possible.

If you have a short trip and only a day for Universal, and want to experience one or especially both parks, then Universal Express passes are a good idea. If you are going during one of those super busy days, they are a must.

Is Universal Express Worth It?

I can't answer this for you. No matter when you visit, having Universal Express will be a time saver. The question is really how much you value the time you save. During less busy times, we think it's nice to have but not a must-have. You may feel differently. It's all about what you value.

Is There Any Other Way to Save Time in the Parks?

Universal Express Pass - Knight Bus

If you don't want to spring for Express Passes or they are just out of the budget, do not fret! There are still great ways to save time in the parks. If you follow us frogs often, you probably know these by heart.

1. Buy your tickets in advance.

You do not want to waste any of your precious touring time standing in line to buy tickets. Plus, you will save more money if you buy in advance.

2. Arrive at the parks ahead of official opening.

The gates often open even before their official opening time, so you can get a hop on your day. This is the least busy the parks will be all day, so it is the best time to visit the most popular rides. If you are staying on-site at one of Universal's hotels, take advantage of Early Park Admission to the parks and especially Volcano Bay.

3. Follow a park plan.

We have several for Universal that were created with families in mind. You can see them here or via our app (you can also tailor one of our preset plans to your own needs using the app).

4. Use the single rider lines. 

As mentioned above, the single rider line is often even faster than Universal Express.

Whew! We've covered a lot of ground here. Have questions about Universal Express pass that we haven't answered? Share them in comments below! 

Keep hopping!

Keep hopping, Leap!
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1–50 of 317 comments
Sep 19, 2018 at 10:21 p.m. Whitney Says...

Hi!

I am super excited to surprise my daughter for her 12th birthday with a trip to Universal in a couple of weeks (October 1st - 3rd). This is our first family vacation and we will be traveling with 5 (2 adults & 3 children). While doing my research I have discovered the child swap option for rides so we don't have to miss out/split up which I absolutely love! But I cant seem to find out if I will need to purchase express passes so that we get everything in in one day or if I should purchase 2-day passes...we are really trying to experience the Halloween Horror Nights as well... can someone please tell me if we will have to pay separate fees for the general park and HHN??? And could you give me a recommendation on the passes... express vs 2-day...THANX IN ADVANCE!

Reply
Sep 20, 2018 at 3:56 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Whitney!

Sounds like a blast! Our Crowd Calendar predicts mild crowds, so express passes are not a necessity. The choice between Express and two days is up to you! We like having as much park time as possible. Yes, you do need separate tickets for Halloween Horror Nights.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Sep 17, 2018 at 8:10 p.m. Rachel Says...

We are planning to come April 29-May 3rd 2019. Do you think we need the Universal Pass? There are 5 in our family. Trying to decide if we need it- then to stay at a higher price hotel that includes it, or lesser hotel and pay separate. Thank you!

Reply
Sep 17, 2018 at 3:43 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Rachel!

Our Crowd Calendar predicts moderate crowds, so Express is not a necessity. But IF you decide to splurge: Since you have a larger family, we think your best bet would be staying at one of the hotels that includes it for the days you'll be visiting the parks.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Sep 6, 2018 at 7:51 a.m. STEVEN Says...

Hi...how is the week of Feb 12-16 been traditionally and looking for this coming 2019 as far as crowd goes. Thanks and LOVE this site!:)

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Sep 6, 2018 at 3:07 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Steven!

Crowd levels in the park vary a lot this week ... check out our Crowd Calendar for details :)

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Aug 29, 2018 at 7:12 p.m. Pam Lacko Says...

If we check in the hotel early to get the Express Pass for that day, will we be able to leave our car there even though the room might not be ready until later?

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Aug 31, 2018 at 3:54 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Pam!

Yes! You can leave your car and luggage at the hotel.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Aug 26, 2018 at 7:43 p.m. Steve Says...

Hi,

Hoping for some guidance. We are due to travel to Orlando over easter 2019. Looking at the crowd calendar, it looks like the 2 universal parks do not look busy on 16/17 April, however I am conscious this may be based on last years information when Easter was earlier in the year. Is this thought process correct? If so, does this mean the reality for this date could be significantly different from the Crowd Calendar prediction?

Reason I ask is with 5 travelling express pass for 2 days looks likely to cost around $1,200, which on top of 2 day passes becomes expensive.

We have already booked our accommodation, but the other option is to book into one of the 3 onsite hotels that provide express pass for 1 night and hence have 2 days express pass - in reality does this work (i.e. can we arrive at 7am 16/4 and collect our room key and technically hand it back late in the day 17/4?

Your assistance appreciated Steve.

Reply
Aug 31, 2018 at 3:45 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Steve!

This week should not be too bad as far as crowds go since Easter is the following week. If you book one of the on-site hotels for the Express Pass, keep in mind that you would be paying for the additional hotel accommodation. You wouldn’t need to hand your room keys back in, but you would need to physically go to the hotel and check in to get your room keys, which also serve as your Express Pass. It might be worth it just to rebook at an on-site hotel for your entire stay.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Sep 17, 2018 at 11:26 p.m. Lisa Says...

I am also trying to go to Univeral for a few days AFTER Easter - the 24/25. Easter week at Disney is CRAZY, I'm wondering why this is listed as yellow and not red? Do you think express passes are a necessity that week? Thanks!

Reply
Sep 17, 2018 at 11:55 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Lisa!

Our Crowd Calendar is based on a variety of factors such as park events, school breaks, holidays, weather and more. We don't think Express passes are necessary for "yellow" days :) Hope this helps!

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Sep 1, 2018 at 11:33 a.m. Steve Says...

How long do US children have off for easter and do you know when they are off?

Reply
Sep 5, 2018 at 8:47 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Steve!

Children in the U.S. are typically off for one week before or after Easter Sunday. We take this into consideration on our Crowd Calendar.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Aug 25, 2018 at 3:30 p.m. Heather Says...

We are thinking of going to Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure the week of Thanksgiving (Sun, 11/18-Wed, 11/21). The crowd calendar rangers from 7-9 on those days. If we stay at the Hard Rock and have the Express Unlimited will we still deal with crazy lines or these passes average 10 min wait regardless of crowds? I'm sure the shops, restaurants, etc will be super crowded but I think we can handle that.

Reply
Aug 28, 2018 at 5:11 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Heather!

Holiday weeks are extra crowded, so it will be quite a bit busier than usual. This may lengthen your wait times a bit, but you'll still be savings TONS of time :)

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Aug 20, 2018 at 8:57 p.m. Lindsay Says...

We are planta vacation Aug 13-20 2019 with five park daya and some days off to visit family in the area. With 5 days of park passes is express pass needed that time of year. Seems like it is the cuas of busy/not as busy times in the parks. We have considered an off site hotel with only a few days of express pass, an on site where we would get them included or some combination of the two. Thoughts?

Reply
Aug 22, 2018 at 11:51 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Lindsay!

Our Crowd Calendar for August 2019 will drop in the next couple of weeks ... so keep an eye out! We imagine low-moderate crowds in late August of next year. Express Passes will not be necessary, but are always a plus. :)

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Aug 17, 2018 at 11:58 p.m. Universal. summer. 2019 Says...

Hi. The site is great. We are planning our first Universal trip for next summer. We are planning to stay in Orlando for 8 to 10 days and hope to go to Busch Gardens and Sea World as well as Universal. To save money we may book off site for most nights with one night at Royal Pacific. Will this plan give us 2 days of Express Pass at Universal? and can the Express Passes be used as early as 6 AM on the first day (check-in states 4 PM) until closing on the second day (even after checking-out at 11 AM)? Thanks.

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Aug 22, 2018 at 12:38 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi there!

You can use Express pass on both check-in and check-out days. You can go to the park as early as you wish on the day of check-in, but may have to leave your luggage at the hotel if your room isn't yet available. We LOVE staying on-site, and totally recommend it. :)

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Aug 17, 2018 at 8:17 p.m. Tony Says...

Hi, we're going to be there the last week of August. Do you think we would need them during this time?

Reply
Aug 22, 2018 at 12:13 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Tony!

Our Crowd Calendar predicts it will be low-moderate for crowds. :)

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Aug 12, 2018 at 5:25 p.m. Marie Says...

Hi If you go to Universal in the evening only(after 6pm) are you able to buy reduced price express passes for the remaining hours the parks are open or is the price still the same?

Reply
Aug 28, 2018 at 5:06 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Marie!

We haven't heard of any deals like this, but we'll check the next time we visit. In the meantime, we welcome the Frog Pond to chime in :)

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Aug 12, 2018 at 2:54 a.m. Spinaun Says...

Hi!

We are a Family of four and we will be staying at new Aventura Hotel next February (second week (8 to 15) and we have 4 days P2P tickets... Do we necessarily need Express Passes for that time of the year? Should we buy them or not? because I understand that second week of February usually is not a busy time, and we have 4 days for the parks. Thank you!

Reply
Aug 14, 2018 at 11:23 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi there!

With low-moderate crowds predicted, express passes should not be necessary during this time.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Aug 11, 2018 at 6:12 p.m. Lisa Says...

Hi , I have booked the hard rock for 1 night and would just like to know what time can you arrive to check in to recieve your room card to enable you for the express

Reply
Aug 22, 2018 at 12:22 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Lisa!

You can check in as early as you like the day of your stay and get the room keys that will serve as your Universal Express. You would have to store your luggage at the hotel if your room is not yet available.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Aug 8, 2018 at 8:44 p.m. Mary Ward Says...

Do you sell the Universal Express passes? If not can I buy the regular 2 day park to park tickets through Undercover tourist and then buy the express pass at Universal? Will they work together?

Reply
Aug 9, 2018 at 10:56 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Mary,

We do not offer Universal Express passes to Universal Orlando, but you can definitely purchase regular admission tickets through us and then purchase a Universal Express Pass at Universal! They will work together.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Aug 7, 2018 at 2:37 a.m. Joshua Davis Says...

Does everyone in your group need to be at check-in to get the express passes at Royal Pacific?

Reply
Aug 7, 2018 at 4:01 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Joshua,

No, they do not. But they must be listed on the reservation!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jul 24, 2018 at 10:50 p.m. Kristy Says...

If staying at Lowes Royal Pacific where you get the express unlimited is that valid from the open of the park on your check in day or not until check in at 4pm? Just wondering if your room key is your pass then how does it work before 4pm check in to do the park that first day?

Reply
Aug 1, 2018 at 9 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Kristy!

It is covered days of check-in and check-out. You would have to check into the hotel first to get the key, but your room likely would not be available until later. The resorts have a place to store your luggage until your room is ready so you can hop into the parks!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jul 24, 2018 at 6:07 p.m. Eleonora Says...

Hi there,

Thank you for the useful info! I'm writing from Italy and I'd like to know if the same info also apply to Universal Studios Hollywood. I have another question for you: since I don't know which day we'll be able to visit the park, do you think we can buy Universal Express Passes only a couple of days in advance or they might not be available (we are 2 families of 4) toward the end of August?

Many thanks!!

Eleonora

Reply
Jul 24, 2018 at 3:41 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Eleonora,

Hop over to our post on Universal Express at Universal Studios Hollywood for more information! We think you'll be all right to wait to buy them a couple of days before your trip.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jul 14, 2018 at 11:47 p.m. Cuau Says...

First things first: THANK YOU. This site is amazing.

I am planning a 4 day vacation at Orlando in August 13-17

I bought Express Pass at Universal because I will be there only 1 day and want to visit both Harry Potter parks, but I picked August 16 :(, which is 6, but only USF has red alert for that day, August 15 has "green check" in your crowded calendar for USD and UIA, do you recommend me to change the date? (I don't know if it's possible) or should I wait until the day is close and check again? Does crowd calendar change? I want to avoid lines as much as possible.

Reply
Jul 17, 2018 at 6:26 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Cuau!

As long as you have your Express Pass, you should be in the clear! This will minimize wait time in line as much as possible. With a 6/10 Crowd Calendar estimate, the parks shouldn't be too incredibly busy. Don't worry ... you're in for an awesome day!

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Jul 2, 2018 at 8:49 p.m. Chad Jarvis Says...

Hi there...thank you SO much for this! I know Disney, but am a newbie for all things Universal. So, quick question on the Express Pass provided by staying at Loews Royal Pacific Resort...is it also good at Volcano Bay? Or must that be a separate purchase?

Reply
Jul 3, 2018 at 12:58 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Chad,

The complimentary Universal Express Passes are only good for Universal Studios Florida and Universal's Islands of Adventure!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jun 20, 2018 at 2:17 p.m. John Tithof Says...

Using Loews Ryan pacific at universal during peak times is the best deal, and hotel is nice.

Reply
Jun 20, 2018 at 1:28 a.m. Claudia Says...

Love ❤️

Reply
Jun 20, 2018 at 1:24 a.m. Jerri Says...

can not wait to visit.

Reply
Jun 19, 2018 at 4:04 p.m. Beth Ann Says...

What a great article!!! I can’t wait to go back in the near future. ????

Reply
Jun 17, 2018 at 12:53 p.m. Mark Says...

Hello,

We will be attending both parks on June 26th and June 27th and plan on getting the express pass. Do you know if active duty personal with Military ID get a discount when buying the fast pass? I couldn't find anything online and the base office does not sell fast passes.

Thank you.

Reply
Jun 20, 2018 at 7:15 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Mark!

Unfortunately, there aren't any discounts offered on express passes.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jun 15, 2018 at 9:23 p.m. Ashley G Says...

If I am buying base park tickets, can we still ride the Harry Potter rides in the park we are in each day? I know we can’t ride Hogwarts Express, but can we still ride the HP rides?

Reply
Jun 19, 2018 at 12:06 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Ashley!

Yes - as long as you are visiting both Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure, you'll be able to explore Diagon Alley AND Hogsmeade. The only attraction you will not be able to experience is the Hogwarts Express.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Jun 9, 2018 at 7:49 p.m. Ani Says...

I am going to universal studios for 3 days and booked a room at the Lowes Royal Pacifc resort that offers express passes. My husband and I booked the room but at the time my son could not go, but now he can. The room has 2 queen beds so no issue there, but will I be able to get him the express pass since I originally booked the room for two people instead of three?

Reply
Jun 12, 2018 at 1:44 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Ani,

You'll just need to add your son to the hotel reservation and he'll be able to receive an Express Pass!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jun 7, 2018 at 8:03 p.m. Daniela Says...

Hi,

I`m quoting your words:

"If you are staying on-site at one of Universal's premier and preferred resort hotels, Universal Express Unlimited is free for every day of your visit. That includes your date of check-in and departure."

Does it mean that if I am staying only one night at the on-site hotel, let's say 28~29/6, i can use the express unlimited pass for 2 both days, 28th and 29th?

Reply
Jun 7, 2018 at 3:04 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Daniela,

Yes, that is correct!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
May 29, 2018 at 9:16 p.m. Renee Says...

I have 4 days, park2park tickets for 7/22-7/25, meaning I could spend 2days at Universal & 2days at Island of Adv. Do I really need express passes? Or is 2 days per park enough? We are a family of 4 (12yr,9yr, hubby and me). Xpress passes for those dates are $150 ea. Which would be $600 xtra per day or $2,400 for those 4 days. Way out of my budget. Any thoughts? Suggestions? Someone suggested renting a room (they r at $360x night currently) from one of the resorts (we are staying with family) but they suggested just renting the room to get the xpress pass only.

Reply
Jun 1, 2018 at 6:02 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Renee!

Staying on-site at one of the hotels that offer Express Passes is worth exploring, although you probably already have your lodging set. You don’t have to have Express Passes — lots of people will not. Just follow our best practices, arrive at the parks ahead of opening, use our iPhone app with wait times and park plans etc. It will be crowded, but you can still have a great time.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
May 29, 2018 at 5:26 p.m. Jai Says...

Hello, I, my wife and 7yr old daughter are visiting Orlando end of June. My question is: At Universal IOA, I am planning to get express passes for me and my daughter. My wife is not much of a ride person so I wont be buying an express pass for her. However, if there is some ride she would like to do, can she utilize my Express pass instead of me?

Thanks in anticipation!

Reply
May 29, 2018 at 3:17 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jai,

Universal Express passes are non-transferrable; only one pass can be used by one individual. We suggest utilizing the single rider queue if there's a ride she wants to experience! This line is usually much shorter (and often just as short as the Universal Express line) than the standby queue.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
May 1, 2018 at 12:34 a.m. TB Says...

So we plan to go to both Universal and Island of Adventure during a weekend in May. My question is if we purchase the tickets through this site do we have to go on universals website and add on express passes or can we purchase them through this site as well?

Reply
May 1, 2018 at 2:44 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi there,

We aren't able to yet offer Universal Express Passes, so you'll need to add them on through Universal's site (or purchase them at the parks)!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Apr 27, 2018 at 2:16 p.m. Brittany Says...

Hello.. I am planning a Disney vacation for the first week of June for my husband and me. We are planning on spending 1 day at IOA, and are wanting Express Passes. We are worried about weather, so thought about waiting to buy the pass once we get to the park, in case the exact day we go changes. Would you recommend buying early, or wait until we get to the park?

Reply
May 3, 2018 at 10:28 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Brittany,

If you are worried about weather and unsure of the passes, then we'd recommend waiting until you're at the parks to purchase!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Apr 25, 2018 at 6:56 p.m. Sue Says...

My daughter and I are squeezing in a 4 day whirlwind trip to Disney with 1 of those days at Universal. Staying at Disney and planning to Uber to Universal. My question relates to cutting down on the distance we need to walk to get to Universal Studios in the morning. My thought was to take an Uber to the closest hotel (Hard Rock?) and walk from there, rather than going to the Uber drop off area and through the parking deck. I recently had joint surgery and I'd rather not log a half mile walking before I even enter the park if at all possible. Suggestions? Thanks so much!

Reply
Apr 26, 2018 at 10:13 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Sue!

We invite the Frog Pond to chime in, as we haven't done this before - but we think this sounds like a great plan! We just recommend finding the closest hotel and calling to make sure they allow Uber drop-off ahead of time.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Apr 17, 2018 at 11:03 a.m. JP F Says...

We love your site! We are planning a trip to Orlando from August 19 through August 23. And we will be staying at Royal Caribbean. We plan to spend the first day at Volcano Bay and the next two at IOA and USF. We are going to Epcot the fourth day. Since we will need to be at the airport by 4pm on the 23rd, we still have a bunch of hours to do something that day (our fifth and final day) which we will probably spend somewhere at Universal. Since we will have the Unlimited Express Pass, is this actually too much time at Universal (3+ days with Express Pass)? Should we maybe plan for two days at Disney parks? Thanks very much for your help.

Reply
Apr 19, 2018 at 8:09 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi JP!

While we don't think there's any such thing as TOO MUCH Universal, you may have already accomplished all you can do there with the luxury of the Unlimited Express Pass. It still could be a fun day to leisurely walk around and re-visit some of your favorite rides. Another option would be visiting Hollywood Studios at Disney World since it opens bright and early at 8 a.m. to get maximum park time in before you hit the airport - OR - spend this last day at Universal and use an earlier day in your trip to visit another Disney park.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Apr 14, 2018 at 12:05 p.m. Keith Murphy Says...

Hopefully this wasn't asked before, but if you purchase a premier annual pass, are the express passes that are available after 4pm unlimited or restricted to one ride per day. Thanks in advance!

Reply
Apr 17, 2018 at 2:25 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Keith,

The Express Passes are restricted to one time per participating attraction!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Apr 12, 2018 at 6:45 p.m. Amy L Says...

Do you know if there is a military discount for the express pass?

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Apr 15, 2018 at 11:03 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Amy!

We're not seeing anything on Universal's site regarding Express pass discounts for military, but it may be worth asking about at the ticket window!

Keep hopping!

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Apr 5, 2018 at 9:58 p.m. Barry fawcett Says...

Hello there. I have purchased my universal tickets already. We are currently in Florida on our vacation but wish to purchase fast pass tickets.. if I purchase them on line is the addition in email form or do they send out hard copy tickets??

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Apr 6, 2018 at 11:31 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Barry!

These will be added on to your current tickets and should be sent via e-mail. We recommend purchasing them directly at the gate to make things simple!

Keep hopping!

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Apr 4, 2018 at 3:37 p.m. Cassie Rowles Says...

Is there a military discount for express passes?

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Apr 6, 2018 at 10:50 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Cassie!

We don't believe so, but Universal does offer other great discounts for military.

Keep hopping!

Leap

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Apr 2, 2018 at 7:18 p.m. Lynn Says...

Hello,

Is there a list of which rides do not except express, so that I can plan accordingly?? I am staying at one of the resorts, so I will use the early admission to go to the non-express rides.

Reply
Apr 6, 2018 at 12:08 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Lynn!

You can check out the rides eligible for the Express Pass here. Using early admission for the rest is a great plan of action!

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

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Apr 2, 2018 at 1:59 p.m. MelH Says...

I just wanted to let you know that part of the article is no longer correct.

Where it says "If you are staying on-site, you'll visit one of the kiosks in the lobby to get your Universal Express passes. Put in your room key (every person over the age of 3 in your party should have one), and the kiosk takes your picture and spits out a pass. Ta-dah! You're good to go! Keep in mind that you do still need regular admission to enter the park. If by some chance you lose your on-site hotel Universal Express Unlimited pass (or you forget to do it!), don't fret. You can do it in the parks at guest relations."

This step is no longer necessary - your room key is now you Express Pass!

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May 17, 2018 at 4:25 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Mel,

Thanks for the update! That is awesome — one less thing to worry about!

Keep hopping!

Leap

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Mar 28, 2018 at 3:43 p.m. Josh Says...

HI! I am planning a vacation this summer to universal. So this maybe a silly question but I am trying to distinguish the difference between the Express Pass and the Express Unlimited Pass. Please correct me if I'm wrong...The express pass allows only 1 time per ride for the select rides in the park for the day and the unlimited pass allows for unlimited number of times to by pass the lines on the select rides for the day. Please let me know. thanks

Reply
Mar 29, 2018 at 10:58 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Josh,

You are correct! The Express Pass only ones allow you to use the Express queue once per ride, whereas the Unlimited Express Pass allows you to use the Express queue as many times as you want per ride.

Keep hopping!

Leap

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Mar 26, 2018 at 8 p.m. Rosa Says...

Hi, if you have the Park to Park ticket, can yo use the universal express in both parks?

Thank you.

Reply
Mar 27, 2018 at 4:30 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Rosa,

Yes, the Universal Express Pass will be valid for both parks on the same day!

Keep hopping!

Leap

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Mar 22, 2018 at 9:22 p.m. Rosa Says...

Hola,

Si tienes el ticket park to park y compras el express, puedes usar el express pass el mismo dia en los dos parques?

Reply
Mar 27, 2018 at 11 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hola,

Sí, puede usar el pase Universal Express en ambos parques el mismo día.

Sigue saltando,

Leap

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Mar 22, 2018 at noon Maeyann Says...

We are planning a universal trip for 8 adults (1 is in a wheelchair) from 11/15 - 11/22. Staying on site. Are the parks easy to manuever in a wheelchair? Crowds?

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Mar 22, 2018 at 10:27 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Maeyann,

Yes, the parks and most rides/attractions are very accessible for wheelchairs! The first couple of days of your trip will be light to moderate crowds. Once you get into Thanksgiving week, you'll definitely see more crowds. Check out our Crowd Calendar for predicted crowds. Have a great trip!

Keep hopping!

Leap

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Mar 19, 2018 at 7:42 p.m. Jess Says...

Might be a silly question lol. I purchased the express ticket for one day. If after we've used all of our one time front of the line to rides and shows can we ride them more than once and just wait in the regular line? Or are we only allowed once per ride and show for the day? Thank you.

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Apr 16, 2018 at 12:56 p.m. Mike Says...

You can actually save your one time express pass for when the lines are longer. if you get to a ride you’re planning to ride and the line is short, ride it by waiting in the standby line. Then come back later or ride it a second time with express pass (assuming the line has grown). You can optimize your express pass by using it when the lines are longest.

Reply
Mar 20, 2018 at 2:58 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jess,

You can ride as much as you want! You'll just only be able to use the Express Pass once per ride. But after that, you're more than welcome to ride as many times as you want using the regular line!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Mar 11, 2018 at 7:49 p.m. Anna Says...

Hi there,

Thanks for all the info!

Here is my question: when staying at an on-site Universal hotel like Hard Rock which includes the Unlimited Express Passes, how many Unlimited Express Passes are included with the room? Is one available for each person staying in the room or is there a fixed/maximum number?

Reply
Mar 15, 2018 at 3:12 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Anna,

Each person that stays in the room receives an Unlimited Express Pass! For an example, if there are 4 of you registered for the room, then all 4 will receive a pass.

Keep hopping!

Leap

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Mar 6, 2018 at 12:27 a.m. Stacey Says...

Planning our first Universal/Orlando trip, 2 adults/1 child. Wondering if I'm understanding things right...

If we fly in on Saturday 9/15 and stay at Cabana Bay we get early entry to parks 9/16, and 9/17, then could switch our hotel to Loews Royal Pacific to get Express Passes for 9/17, and also have early entry/Express Passes for 9/18 (checkout.)

We want to spend 3 days with Park-to-Park tickets in Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure (specifically HP!) Any advice on our proposed plan?

Thank you for the great site and discounts!!

Reply
Mar 9, 2018 at 2:37 a.m. Stacey Says...

How much could HHN (potentially) affect our experience during these dates?

We’re not interested in attending, so wondering if things could be shut down during this time.

Thanks!!

Reply
Mar 6, 2018 at 11:29 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Stacey,

Your proposed plan sounds good to us! Definitely take advantage of the Early Park Admission to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter (especially since your most looking forward to this). Those complimentary Express Unlimited are hard to beat, so you'll have a ton of fun and convenience using them. Have a great trip!

Keep hopping!

Leap

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Mar 12, 2018 at 3:30 p.m. Stacey Says...

I’m wondering about Hollywood Horror Nights, if we’re in Universals Studios and

Islands of Adventure Sun-Tues 9/16-18 how much could that impact our experience?

Is just Universal shut down Sunday night, or are sections of the parks closed during the day? Also, are there decorations to be worried about?

Many thanks Frog Family!!!

Reply
Mar 20, 2018 at 4:33 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Stacey,

Universal Studios is the park that hosts Halloween Horror Nights, so Islands of Adventure is still open to park goers! Some decorations can be seen throughout the park.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Mar 3, 2018 at 2:35 a.m. Matt Says...

My family of 6 (kids age 6 to 13) are going to universal first time on mar 5-6. One park each day. If getting express only one of 2 days. Which would you recommend, main park or islands?

Reply
Mar 5, 2018 at 9:30 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Matt!

It truly just depends which park has rides better suited for your kids. Take a peek at the website and see which characters and experiences best appeal to them. Islands of Adventure is our favorite!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Mar 2, 2018 at 9:55 p.m. Jennifer Gray Says...

My family and I are planning a trip in August. We're visiting Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure on 2 separate days. We're not staying on site. We're not planning on doing a park hopper but we are planning on express passes. Does the express pass cover BOTH days or do we have to buy an express pass each day?

Reply
Mar 5, 2018 at 9:39 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jennifer!

Express passes cover one day.

Keep hopping!

Leap

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Mar 2, 2018 at 1:10 a.m. Chris Paulson Says...

You recommend experiencing the regular riding que for the Harry Potter Escape from Gringotts, and Forbidden Journey rides. What are the other rides you recommend where the waiting que might enhance the ride experience? We are staying onsite so I am thinking we would target those rides specifically during the early admission hours.

Reply
Mar 6, 2018 at 11:41 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Chris,

Most of the attractions at Universal Orlando have pretty awesome queues! More of our favorites include: Transformers, The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man, ET and Revenge of the Mummy. These aren't quite as elaborate as the Harry Potter rides, but they're still fun to experience if you can.

Keep hopping!

Leap

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Mar 1, 2018 at 8:32 p.m. silvia acosta Says...

Hi I have a 9 year old son I am taking to universal for in march for holy week i guess the crowds will be crazy, I will go to days one universal studios the other island of adventure and can only purchase the express pass for one of those days. Where do you recommend I use the express pass on universal studios or island of adventure ?

Reply
Mar 5, 2018 at 1:32 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Silvia!

We recommend checking out the rides and attractions at each park and using the express pass at whichever one appeals more to your son. Islands of Adventure is our personal favorite!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Mar 1, 2018 at 2:48 a.m. Gabriela Cordoba Says...

Hola cuál es el costo adicional para el pase express de 2 días en Universal y la isla de la aventura para diciembre 2018

Reply
Mar 6, 2018 at 1:05 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hola,

Depende de las fechas que vayas. Puede consultar los precios en el sitio web oficial de Universal: https://www.universalorlando.com/web/en/us/tickets-packages/express-passes/index.html

Sigue saltando,

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