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What Is Early Park Admission at Universal Orlando — And How Does It Work?

by Leap on August 2, 2021 99 Orlando

Universal Early Park Admission - PinterestAs you frog friends know, we're big fans of staying on-site at the theme park resorts. Universal Orlando Resort is one of our very favorite resorts to stay on-site (and you can book directly from us!).

There are some terrific benefits, such as proximity to the parks, free transportation, free pool hopping at select hotels, delivery of your in-park souvenir purchases to your room and more.

All of the Universal Orlando Resort hotels offer Early Park Admission. Early Park Admission allows you to enter select parks up to an hour early during your stay. This benefit can be a huge help to get a hop on the crowds, especially during busy peak times! Let's walk through all of the details of when and how to use this perk. That way, you can take advantage of it on your next trip!

Universal Orlando Hotels Offering Early Park Admission

Understanding Universal Early Park Admission - Loews Portofino Bay Room

It's worth noting that select Universal Orlando Resort hotels — Loews Portofino Bay Hotel, Universal's Hard Rock Hotel and Loews Royal Pacific Resort — offer free Universal Express Unlimited, another amazing benefit.

Understanding Universal Early Park Admission - Loew's Sapphire Falls

Understanding Early Park Admission at Universal Orlando

Universal's Early Park Admission allows all Universal Orlando Resort hotel guests and premiere annual passholders one-hour early entry to Universal Studios Florida or Universal's Islands of Adventure (during extra busy times, it can be both parks) AND Universal's Volcano Bay water theme park every day. Preferred annual passholders are only granted Early Park Admission on select days. Valid theme park admission is required. Universal partner hotel guests only receive the benefit if they've purchased a vacation package that includes a hotel stay and park admission (staying at a partner hotel alone is not enough to grant EPA access).

Understanding Universal Early Park Admission - Gringotts Goblin

While Universal is no longer limiting capacity, it can still get pretty busy during peak seasons. During these anticipated busy times, Universal encourages guests to take advantage of Early Park Admission. Previously, Universal has stated that hotel guests were included in the daily attendance count and would be guaranteed entry if the parks reached capacity. Now, hotel guests are given priority access, but entry is not guaranteed, making Early Park Admission a more useful benefit.

During Early Park Admission, select rides, attractions and areas are open one hour before the park opens to the general public. (To make it easy for you, we note which park is hosting Early Park Admission, general park hours and Early Park Admission hours on our Orlando Crowd Calendar.) It used to be that the one-hour Early Park Admission was limited to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter rides, but that is no longer the case. The rides that open early now vary, but usually include The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man at Islands of Adventure and Despicable Me Minion Mayhem at Universal Studios Florida. You can double-check which rides are being offered on Universal Orlando's website.

Universal's Early Park Admission is available every day of your hotel stay, including days of check-in and checkout! Using EPA on your check-in day is a little bit trickier, so we don't recommend it UNLESS you are only spending one night at a Universal Orlando hotel and it's an extremely busy time. If you want to take advantage of EPA on your check-in day, note that you will need to check in to your hotel first — which means very, very early in the morning. EPA begins an hour before the official park opening time which can be as early as 7 a.m., so you would have to check-in before that, then allow time to get from the hotel and to the park.

How to Use Early Park Admission at Universal Orlando

Universal Early Park Admission - Signage

To make the most of your time inside the park, we recommend you arrive at least 30 minutes ahead of the start of Early Park Admission to allow that extra time needed to pass security, walk through Universal CityWalk and get through the turnstiles. You'll need your park tickets and your hotel room keys when you enter the park hosting Early Park Admission! A hotel key is needed for each family member or friend who is staying with you at the resort. The parks typically start allowing all guests in up to a half-hour before the official opening time, so you definitely want to be in the park hosting EPA before then if you want to ride with the lowest waits.

We recently used Early Park Admission to enter Islands of Adventure an hour early. After going through the turnstiles and walking through Port of Entry, we saw that Marvel Super Hero Island was blocked off, but team members would let people through to get to The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man after showing their hotel keys or annual passes. Seuss Landing is not available during EPA, but there is a pathway around it to get to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. Team members block off Seuss Landing to check credentials, and then let guests through onto the pathway.

Universal Early Park Admission - Team Member Checking Credentials

We successfully went on Hagrid's with only a 30-minute wait, so we think it's toadally worth hopping to Hogsmeade bright and early! Afterward, we made a beeline to Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey, which only had a 10-minute wait. Team members were stationed by the bridge to block off access to the Jurassic Park area, but they started to let guests through around 9:45 a.m. (15 minutes before the official park opening that day).

When to Use Early Park Admission at Universal Orlando

Understanding Early Park Admission at Universal Orlando - Universal Volcano Bay Krakatau

As you know, the early frog gets the fly, so you'll likely need to sacrifice a little shut-eye for Early Park Admission. Most vacationers don't want to do this, so use it to your advantage! You definitely should use Early Park Admission in these scenarios:

  • You only have time for one day at the park. This is especially true if you are park hopping!
  • You are visiting during an extremely busy time — the peak of summer and around holidays. Use our Crowd Calendar as your guide. If it's a level 8, 9 or 10 day, consider using EPA to jump-start your day in the parks before the crowds reach their highest levels.
  • You're spending the day at Volcano Bay. Early Park Admission gets you first access to the rides, but it also gets you dibs on prime seating at the wave pool and other places around the park.
  • You want to visit The Wizarding World of Harry Potter with limited crowds.
  • Any time you visit and want to get a hop on the crowds!

Universal Early Park Admission - Gringotts Dragon

If you arrive early, you will be able to ride the two or three rides open for EPA and you can move onto the next most popular ride on your list. It may already be in operation in the 15 minutes before the park officially opens. Even if it's not, you can be one of the first in line!

For example, with EPA at Universal Studios Florida for Despicable Me: Minion Mayhem and Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts, you should be able to easily ride both before all park guests arrive. If you start with Minion Mayhem and then move onto Gringotts, you will then be in the back of the park and in prime position to ride TRANSFORMERS: The Ride — 3-D or MEN IN BLACK Alien Attack with little to no wait.

Are you ready to hop on Early Park Admission at Universal Orlando Resort? We toadally recommend it ... and staying on property isn't too bad, either! Book your Universal Orlando Resort hotel today to make the most of your next trip.

Related: The Ultimate Guide on When to Use Universal Express

Related: Why Stay at a Universal Orlando Resort

Keep hopping!

Keep hopping, Leap!
View Comments
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Jul 23, 2021 at 5:57 p.m. Christina Says...

We will be going to Universal in early August and are staying at a Universal hotel so will be taking advantage of EPA. We want to do Hagrid’s and the Velocicoster. What would be our best course of action to minimize wait times? We were thinking of riding the velicicoster and then Hagrid’s. Thoughts?

Reply
Jul 23, 2021 at 2:19 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Christina!

Hagrid's uses the Virtual Line more often than not, so if you get there early enough and there happens to be a standby line before it switches to a Virtual Line, we'd jump right into line and tackle Hagrid's first. If you arrive and Hagrid's is already using a Virtual Line and at capacity, then we encourage you to keep checking as more spots open up throughout the day. VelociCoaster has not been utilizing a Virtual Line and its wait times stay relatively consistent throughout the day. But we've noticed that after the first hour or so, it dips down a little bit. A good target time would be between 10 a.m. and noon, as you don't want to risk not riding it before a typical summer thunderstorm passes through in the afternoon. Hope this helps!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jul 8, 2021 at 3:33 p.m. Bisma Says...

I’m considering staying at Cabana Bay but have already purchased my universal tickets. Will I still be able to get EPA even though I’m not buying the universal ticket through the resort?

Reply
Jul 8, 2021 at 11:20 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Bisma!

Yes, all guests staying at an official Universal hotel receive the benefit. You'll just need to show your room key (which is personalized with your name and dates of your stay) upon arrival.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jul 2, 2021 at 5:51 p.m. Michael Says...

Do they scan the room keys at turnstile or do you just have to show your room key to get into the parks early when staying as a guest?

Reply
Jul 6, 2021 at 7:44 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Michael!

You just have to show a team member your room keys for Early Park Access (the keys are personalized with names and the dates of your stay).

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jun 27, 2021 at 3:33 a.m. Rob Polk Says...

I know if you buy a regular season pass you aren't eligible for EPA. What if you are staying onsite at the Adventura and using your season pass for admission? Does hotel customer trump season pass for EPA?

Reply
Jun 27, 2021 at 9:06 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Rob!

Yes, all Universal hotel guests, regardless of their admission status, receive the Early Park Admission benefit. Just show the team members your hotel card, which acts as your EPA credentials.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jun 20, 2021 at 12:15 p.m. Jason Says...

We will be in Orlando Oct 29-Nov 4

Our hotel and flight were packaged together through Allegiant air, so these have already been purchased. The only thing missing is the tickets to the Universal Studios park, except for the HHN that we already purchased for Oct 31 (not sure what rides/attractions are available during that event..).

We are staying overnight at Loews Sapphire Falls Resort Oct 29th (checking in around mid-day/afternoon upon flight arrivals) and checking out of Loews the next day on the 30th and staying at a condo for the remainder of our visit.

The family wants to go to Universal Studios Theme Park and see Harry Potter Wizarding World amongst other things.

Based on our pieced together itinerary, are we able to take advantage of Universal Studio park tickets, Early Access, etc from our stay with Loews Sapphire, or are we out of luck?

If we are able to, how do we go about doing this?

Our first time going to Universal, so we are not sure how things work..

Thanks

Reply
Jun 21, 2021 at 10:21 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jason!

Hoppy to help! You will need to purchase park admission separately since it wasn't included in your package (you can get discount tickets through us). The Wizarding World of Harry Potter is located in both parks (Diagon Alley at Universal Studios Florida and Hogsmeade & Hogwarts at Universal's Islands of Adventure), so we'd suggest Park-to-Park tickets to take full advantage of the Wizarding World experiences (in order to ride the Hogwarts Express, you must have a Park-to-Park ticket). You will be able to take advantage of the hotel benefits and amenities during your stay, including Early Park Admission on the 30th. When you check in, each person will receive a hotel key, which grants you Early Admission access — just show it to the team members when they ask for it once you're inside the park. Check out our Halloween Horror Nights guide, which includes which rides and attractions will be open. Let us know if you have any more questions!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jun 4, 2021 at 11:06 p.m. Allison Says...

Hi, does EPA works the same way with the partner hotels? Do we just need room keys and our Universal tickets?

Reply
Jun 6, 2021 at 10:04 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Allison!

No, unfortunately the benefit is not extended to Universal partner hotels. If staying at a Universal hotel, then yes - you would just need your room keys and park tickets.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jun 12, 2021 at 3:13 a.m. Tamatha Says...

I just booked a partner hotel plus tickets package through Universal directly. I also included the dining plan. I am getting Early Park Hours.

Reply
Jun 14, 2021 at 8:09 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Thanks, Tamatha! Here to clarify that staying at a Universal partner hotel alone does not grant Early Park Admission access. But yes, if you purchase a vacation package with a hotel stay and park admission, then you will have the Early Park Admission benefit.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Oct 13, 2021 at 11:40 p.m. Ed Says...

If I have just the regular season pass and staying at a universal hotel. Does everyone in my family of 4 get EPA ?

Reply
Oct 14, 2021 at 8:15 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Ed!

Yes, if they're staying with you, then everyone registered under your hotel reservation will be able to get the Early Park Admission benefit!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jun 2, 2021 at 12:28 a.m. Teresa Says...

Hi I was wandering if you need a reservation for a one day pass to universal studios. If so. How do I go about getting one? Thank you.

Reply
Jun 2, 2021 at 7:07 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Teresa,

Universal Orlando Resort does not require reservations for its parks.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
May 27, 2021 at 2:31 p.m. Kelly Says...

We are only staying one night at a Universal hotel to utilize the Express pass and early admission for one day at the parks. We were hoping to go to the parks on the day of check-in, but how would that work if we need a room key for the early admission but cannot actually check in until later in the day?

Reply
May 27, 2021 at 10:21 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Kelly,

You can take advantage of the Early Park Admission and Universal Express Unlimited benefits on the day of check-in, though you would need to stop by the hotel beforehand (so just to be sure to arrive extra early to allow enough time to enter the park during Early Park Admission). While your room will likely not be ready, you can stop by the front desk to pick up your hotel keys and store your luggage at the hotel.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
May 27, 2021 at 11:41 a.m. Marie Says...

I'll be going twice over the next year, one week in September and one week in January.

Both times we'll be staying in one of the official stay hotels.

If I purchase a seasonal pass, do I still gain access to EPA through my hotel keycard?

Reply
May 27, 2021 at 8:30 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Marie,

Yes, you will still have access to Early Park Admission — just show the team members your room key instead of your seasonal pass when they check your credentials.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
May 27, 2021 at 2:50 p.m. Marie Says...

Oh, awesome! Thanks for the info!!

Add on question while I'm at it... Preferred Annual Pass has a 10% discount on purchases and (from my understanding) most quick serve and sit down foods within the park/some city walk.

Can I pay for my groups purchase, including food so we all benefit from the discount, or will this not apply to anyone else, regardless of who's paying?

(I love your website by the way, I've been here for a while as I plan ????)

Reply
May 27, 2021 at 10:56 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Marie,

We're so glad you've hopped by! Just wanted to clarify from the last question, there are certain annual passes that also have the Early Park Admission benefit (premier and preferred), though the power annual pass and seasonal pass do not. But it still stands that anyone staying at a Universal hotel would have the Early Park Admission benefit, regardless of any pass they may have!

As for the discount benefit, it does apply to the whole check if you're the one paying!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
May 11, 2021 at 1:54 a.m. Ty Says...

I won’t be staying at a Orlando resort hotel but I have tickets and a fast pass. What time should I arrive at the park for entry. I’m going next Friday.

Reply
May 12, 2021 at 2:48 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Ty,

In general, we always recommend the earlier, the better so you can maximize your time inside the parks! We'd suggest arriving about a half hour before park opening so it gives you plenty of time to park, get through security and enter around the time that the park opens.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
May 6, 2021 at 10:46 p.m. michelle Says...

Are we guaranteed a ticket if we are staying at one of the hotels? We are not sure about our plans just yet so we haven't bought tickets, but last time Volcano Bay was sold out on the day we wanted to go.

Reply
May 6, 2021 at 6:56 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Michelle!

Ticket sales can and do sell out in advance, so we recommend purchasing as soon as you're able - they are not guaranteed for hotel guests.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Apr 29, 2021 at 4:22 a.m. Carlee Says...

Hi! We will be staying at a Universal hotel for part of our trip but not the whole trip. Will we still be able to get early admission with our keys even after we have checked out? Is there a way for them to check that? Thanks!

Reply
Apr 29, 2021 at 7:47 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Carlee,

Your hotel keys have the dates of your stay printed on them, and team members check keys upon entry to Early Park Admission.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Apr 5, 2021 at 1:56 a.m. Lettuce Says...

I have a preferred pass, my friends have freedom passes (military pass until the end of the year) do you know if they're eligible for early entry, or if I can bring them in with mine?

Reply
Apr 5, 2021 at 10:16 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi there!

If you're staying at a Universal Orlando Resort hotel, then everyone would be eligible for the Early Park Admission benefit. But unfrogtunately, the new Military Freedom Passes do not have this benefit otherwise, and you wouldn't be able to get them in with your pass.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Mar 31, 2021 at 7:21 p.m. Holly Says...

So Hagid seems to typically have a virtual queue.

We are staying onsite at Royal Pacific so we get the express pass but that doesn't work for Hagrid.

If we go in at 7am (early access on an 8am day) can we ride Hagrid without a virtual pass and does the virtual pass still open at 8am if that is the normal park opening?

Reply
Apr 1, 2021 at 9:21 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Holly,

Hagrid's opens with a standby line during Early Park Access, so we'd highly suggest taking advantage of this benefit by arriving right at 7 a.m. The virtual queue typically opens once the standby line has reached capacity, so it is possible that the Virtual Line system opens up before or after the park's official opening time, depending on crowds.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Apr 2, 2021 at 12:41 p.m. Holly Says...

Thank you as always you folks are the BEST!!!

Happy I bought our tickets through you!!! I loaded them on the Universal App and we are ready to go!!!

Reply
Apr 2, 2021 at 9:01 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

YAAAAAAY! Thanks so much, Holly - we're so hoppy to hear it! :) Have an amazing time!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Mar 11, 2021 at 6:11 a.m. Leia Says...

I have a preferred annual pass, and I am taking my niece and nephew (both young children). I'll be purchasing single day tickets for them. Will they be able to enter during EPA if they are accompanied by me (a preferred annual pass holder)?

Reply
Mar 11, 2021 at 2:09 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Leia!

Team members will ask to see each guest's pass (to verify the color) or hotel key card to verify EPA eligibility.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Mar 2, 2021 at 8:13 p.m. Mom Says...

Hi, I booked a Costco vacation package and one of the highlights of the package said "Early Park Admission to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™ or Universal's Volcano Bay (valid theme park admission required, select attractions)♦

But the dates are April 3 - 6, which appear to be black out dates for passholders. Do you know if we'll still get EPA by staying at the Loews Royal Pacific?

Reply
Mar 4, 2021 at 3:54 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Mom!

If you are using park tickets purchased through Costco, you shouldn't have to worry about those pass holder blockout dates :) All Universal hotel guests receive the Early Park Admission benefit.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Jan 15, 2021 at 5:41 a.m. sebastian andrade Says...

Hi im going in two days i have a preferred pass with Epa that day and the rest of my party has seasonal can we all get in early with my EPA

Reply
Jan 15, 2021 at 4:18 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Sebastian!

Each person entering will need to show their pass holder card (or room key) - since the pass holder tier has its own color, only those with EPA benefits will be able to get in.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Aug 26, 2020 at 8:37 a.m. Carisa Says...

I am trying to plan a trip to universal studios Orlando, nothing is set in stone yet. I have never been to a theme park with hotels. Let's say my flight lands @ 5 pm, I check-in at my on-site hotel. Do I have to get my admission tickets that same day or can I get them the next day? And once my admission ticket expires, do I have to check-out or can I stay another night and leave in the morning?

Reply
Aug 26, 2020 at 8:58 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Carisa!

Your ticket and hotel stay will be separate, so you can arrange your visit however you'd like! We recommend purchasing your tickets in advance to save some extra green, but once those expire, you are welcome to stay at the hotel and enjoy its amenities as long as you'd like - no need to check out if you aren't able to head to the parks :) Likewise, you don't have to head to the parks as soon as you arrive. Hope this helps - let us know if we can help with any additional questions!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jun 9, 2020 at 3:32 a.m. Aimee Burrus Says...

I'm thinking about buying a yearlong Annual Preferred Pass for Universal, but it says there are blackout days for early admission. I'm coming to Orlando in mid-July 2020, and not sure if I should pay the extra for the preferred pass if the early admission isn't included. I'm very confused! Thank you for your help!!

Reply
Jun 9, 2020 at 5:34 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Aimee!

Do you know where you'll be staying for your trip? If you'll be at a Universal Orlando Resort hotel, you'll get Early Park Admission included with your stay! It's nice to get a (frog) leg up on the crowds by entering early, but right now, during the phased reopening, the rides offered for Early Park Admission are fairly limited (two in Universal Studios Florida, to be exact; Volcano Bay is more expansive, and right now, there are no EPA benefits at Islands of Adventure). That in mind, we'd take another look at the additional benefits on the Premier Pass (free valet, a ticket to Halloween Horror Nights, etc.) and see if we felt that was worth the price difference for our fam :) Others in the Frog Pond may have some additional insight for you too! Hope this helps!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Mar 10, 2020 at 5:28 p.m. Lisa G Says...

Do you recommend staying at a hotel that offers express passes for Oct 10-14th 2020?? Ty

Reply
Mar 17, 2020 at 8:15 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Lisa,

If you can swing it, we ALWAYS recommend staying at a hotel that offers Express Pass. Your dates are not typically super crowded and if you spend three to four days in the parks, you should be able to experience most everything.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Feb 8, 2020 at 9:31 p.m. Torun Says...

Hi. Myself and 3 friends will finally be coming for my dream trip in April, on April 1st and 2nd (yes, no April fools here). We are staying at a Resort Hotel with all the benefits, but your app calendar shows no early admission in any of the parks at all on these dates. Can this really be the case? Aren't we paying extra in the hotel to get the 1 hour early entry privilige? We were really, really expecting it. Thanks for your kind reply.

Reply
Feb 11, 2020 at 4:41 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Torun!

It sounds like you are in store for a great trip! The Early Park Admission details generally aren't released more than a month or so in advance, but rest assured that they'll be available on your trip! Keep checking back, either on our app (we're so happy to hear that you're using it!) or on Universal's site for details about which park will be hosting during your trip. Have a wonderful time!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Feb 21, 2020 at 3:56 a.m. Torun Says...

Thank you so much for your very nice reply! I am so happy to see that Universal Studios now have posted early admission on both these dates. So here is my very important question then, and I really hope you can help answer this:

When does the first Hogwarts Express train to Islands of Adventure leave? We really want to get in line early for "Hagrids motorbike adventure" since it does not have an express line and is super popular with hour long lines, but if we do go early here, we will miss our early admission on the Universal Studio park. We are nervous that taking the train early will lead to another line both for the train, and then that we would be too late to get early in the long lines for Hagrids motorbike. What would you recommend for us in this situaton? We all really need to do the awesome Hagrids ride :D

Thank you so much for your kind reply!

Reply
Feb 26, 2020 at 10:42 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Torun!

We wouldn't recommend taking the Hogwarts Express over to Islands of Adventure since it doesn't open until the park (Universal Studios Florida) opens. If Hagrid’s the main priority, the best thing to do is to get to Islands of Adventure early :) Hope this helps!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Feb 5, 2020 at 5:07 p.m. Jennifer Says...

We are going this coming June, but we've only booked the hotel for now because our daughters each invited a friend and we are awaiting confirmation of them being able to go. So we will be purchasing tickets later this spring. Will that affect them having keys to the room to show proof for EPA or do they get the keys at check in. I don't recall putting anyone's specific information on the room reservation other than my husbands for booking, so I would assume we will do this at check in?

Reply
Feb 5, 2020 at 4:21 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jennifer!

You will receive your keys (your EPA ticket) at check-in, but you'll only need two add those over 17 to your reservation in advance. Anyone under the age of 17 can just get a card at check-in.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Oct 10, 2019 at 2:29 p.m. Mary Beth Says...

Do kids also have to have their own hotel key when staying in the same room with their parents, or can they just use their parents? Trying not to carry a LOT of keys around.

Reply
Oct 11, 2019 at 11:22 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Mary!

Each person staying in your room will have their own key with their name on it to show for EPA (kiddos included).

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Sep 12, 2019 at 9:40 a.m. Nandini Says...

Hi!

I’m going to be there from Oct 9-13th and saw somewhere that island of adventures (I.e. Hagrid’s ride) will not be open for EPA? Only universal studios?... is that for certain? It would certainly defeat the point for me, as I have express pass for the rest of the rides and was hoping to get that one in early.

Reply
Sep 13, 2019 at 1:26 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Nandini!

That's correct; Early Park Admission will only be for Universal Studios Florida, not Islands of Adventure, in October.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Oct 7, 2019 at 7:59 p.m. Iris Cosendey Hees Says...

What about November 2019? Is it possible to use the EPA in Hagrid's rollercoaster? Why they change everything? And what about the other attractions in Island such as Forbidden Journey and hippogriff? It will be closed too?

Reply
Oct 9, 2019 at 4:17 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Iris!

November's Early Park Admission isn't listed just yet, but based on the pattern from the past few months, we'd expect that they will be taking place at Universal Studios Florida again (so no Forbidden Journey, Hippogriff or Hagrid's until normal park hours for Islands of Adventure).

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Aug 18, 2019 at 3:16 a.m. Kim Says...

Would you recommend Express Pass for the first week of October? Debating whether it's worth the more expensive hotel to have that included or just stand in regular lines. How do you know which rides will be open during early admission?

Reply
Aug 20, 2019 at 8:09 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Kim!

According to our Crowd Calendar, the crowds look to be pretty manageable the first week of October, with the exception being the weekend. We don't think it's necessary on the lower crowd days, but it might be nice to spring for it on the weekend. You can also upgrade in the park if you find that lines are longer than expected. You can find a list of the rides available during Early Park Admission here.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Aug 16, 2019 at 4:59 p.m. Laura Says...

Can you use your Universal Express Unlimited pass during the EPA hour. Also, is it better to go into Universal Studios during EPA and take the Hogwarts Express over to Islands of Adventure to ride Hagrid's Motorbike first thing in the morning, or is it better to go to the opening of Islands of Adventure and walk back to the Hagrid's ride?

Reply
Aug 21, 2019 at 10:19 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Laura!

The Hogwarts Express doesn’t run during EPA, so it’s probably better to go to Islands of Adventure first since the wait times for Hagrids grow pretty rapidly once the park opens!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Aug 15, 2019 at 5:22 p.m. Lindsay Says...

How do you know which rides are open during early admission?

Reply
Aug 20, 2019 at 7:57 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Lindsay!

The following rides are open during Early Park Admission at Universal Studios Florida™: Despicable Me Minion Mayhem, Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts and Ollivanders

And at Universal’s Volcano Bay, you can find the following attractions open during Early Park Admission: Kala & Tai Nui Serpentine Body Slides, Ohyah & Ohno Drop Slides, Honu Ika Moana, Krakatau Aqua Coaster and Ko’okiri Body Plunge

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jul 23, 2019 at 11:29 p.m. Rebecca Says...

My family of six, including myself will be visiting in August. We purchased our tickets online (four of us are annual passholders) and 2 are buying them when we arrive. We are staying at universal studios endless summer suites. My question is do I need to print out the confirmation info, since I don't have our official passes yet. We were going to do the EPA., If possible. Will the confirmation number be alright to use to enter the park an hour early with the hotel key? Do I need a hotel key for each person also?

Reply
Jul 24, 2019 at 4:07 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Rebecca,

You'll need the confirmation info and a valid ID in order to pick up your annual passes that you bought online at the ticket window or guest services of either theme park before you enter during EPA (or regular park hours). A hotel key is needed for each family member staying at the resort with you.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jun 17, 2019 at 11:24 a.m. Mike Says...

I might be blind but I can’t see on the calendar which park is offering EPA on a given day. Am I overlooking it?

Reply
Jun 21, 2019 at 9:45 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Mike,

You can find which parks are offering Early Park Admission here. For the rest of June and July 2019, it will be available at Universal Studios Florida and Volcano Bay.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jun 3, 2019 at 12:54 a.m. Yogesh J Says...

I have purchased the ticket with room at Aventura. My friend purchased ticket separately and gonna live with me. Would we be able to get early park admission, if I show my room key?

Reply
Jun 4, 2019 at 1:15 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Yogesh!

We'd suggest getting your friend a hotel room card, as well, from the front desk just to be safe. Your hotel room key is your access to Early Park Entry! Have a great time!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
May 30, 2019 at 12:07 p.m. Cheryl Says...

Visiting June 1st and I see no early admission for Universal Studios. Is that for people who have on site Hotel stays. We have early admission passes but US is the only one that shows no early admission. Thank you!!

Reply
Jun 3, 2019 at 4:53 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Cheryl!

Yes, early park admission is a perk for Universal hotel guests. Based on Universal's website, it looks like Volcano Bay and Universal Studios will be the parks with early admission in June (and Islands of Adventure will not offer this perk this month).

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
May 14, 2019 at 5:44 p.m. Jodie Says...

We are visiting September 2-8th and staying on-site. I don't see any early morning hours listed on the crowd calendar for Universal Studios, Island of Adventure or Volcano Bay. Are the early hours every day for on-site guests, or is it like Disney were only certain days will have early hours. I'm trying to plan my itinerary :)

Reply
May 15, 2019 at 10:48 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jodie!

The park you'll get Early Entry to will vary (and unfortunately, is also subject to change, so keep an eye out!). Universal posts these about a month in advance, but you can find that information here.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
May 6, 2019 at 5:23 p.m. Greg Says...

Is there a select gate for EPA entry or do you enter via the main gate?

Thanks!

--Greg

Reply
May 6, 2019 at 4:33 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Greg!

It's not a separate entrance per se, but there will be a sign directing hotel guests towards Early Entry so there's no confusion.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
May 6, 2019 at 4:04 p.m. Andrew Says...

Are the early park admission and express pass automatic just by staying at the Universal Orlando Resorts? Or do you also have to get the park tickets through the hotel (or some other specific place) as well? My work has a discounted ticket program, so I was hoping to get the tickets through that site.

Reply
May 6, 2019 at 12:34 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Andrew!

The hotel-specific benefits like Express Unlimited and Early Entry are tied to the hotel reservation (provided you are staying at Portofino Bay, Hard Rock or Royal Pacific).

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
May 3, 2019 at 12:02 p.m. Ruth Says...

Can I walk to either U.S park? Is it a long walk? OR do I need to take transportation?

Reply
May 6, 2019 at 5:31 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Ruth,

Yes! You can walk. They are right next door to each other. We hop between the two all the time on our visits.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Apr 30, 2019 at 12:26 p.m. Melissa Says...

Do the Universal resorts allow for “early check-in” for the sole purposes of early park admission and express pass usage?

Reply
Apr 30, 2019 at 8:17 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Melissa,

They sure do! They'll be happy to hold your luggage while you head to enjoy the parks on check-in day if your room isn't already available.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jun 8, 2019 at 9:40 a.m. Crista Says...

Will they hold your luggage if you go the park the day of check out?

Reply
Jun 10, 2019 at 8:41 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Crista,

They sure will!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Apr 17, 2019 at 5 p.m. Amanda Bates Says...

We plan on doing Universal and IOA in one day. Do we go on a Fri 1st or Sat 2nd November when it’ll be busier but we’ll get 2 extra hours in the parks due to opening times or Mon 4th or Tues 5th November when it’ll be quieter but we’ll get 2 hours less. Any advice would be appreciated, thanks.

Reply
Apr 13, 2019 at 2:19 p.m. Gino Ouellet Says...

Is Hagrid's motorbike adventure opening this summer will be open for EPA and what do you expect for waiting line on this new ride?

Reply
Apr 15, 2019 at 3:24 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Gino,

Universal hasn't yet revealed whether the new coaster will be included in Early Park Admission this summer. We expect wait times will be quite high for it!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Mar 15, 2019 at 5:40 p.m. Jennifer Says...

Hi, Are there other hotels nearby that offer this early admission also?

Reply
Mar 15, 2019 at 12:49 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jennifer!

Early admission at this time is restricted to the official Universal Orlando Resorts.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Feb 28, 2019 at 3:57 a.m. Kiley Says...

What are the “select other groups” that have access to early entry. We thought we were getting early entry with our tickets but we can’t see any details anywhere.

Reply
Mar 4, 2019 at 12:37 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Kiley!

The groups who have access to early entry are generally those who are staying at the Universal-affiliated hotels, but they do offer some early access to Annual Passholders on select dates, as well as sometimes running promos through Universal that include this perk for select vacation packages.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Feb 24, 2019 at 4:48 p.m. Billy Waters Says...

Hi, great info - do you know by any chance if you have to book the hotel directly with Universal to get the early entry benefit?

Thanks!

Reply
Feb 25, 2019 at 8:14 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Billy!

We aren't sure about other providers, but if you book a Universal hotel through Undercover Tourist, the early entry benefits will be included :)

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Mar 8, 2019 at 11:15 p.m. Erin Says...

Hi,

Is the avanti included?

Reply
Mar 9, 2019 at 7:07 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Erin,

No, it is not.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Feb 18, 2019 at 9:23 p.m. Tania Says...

Do you know what kind of food options are available in the park during early admission? In particular, I’m wondering if we can swing by Lard Lad’s for a giant pink donut on our way to Gringotts, or if we should leave the hotel with food.

Reply
Feb 21, 2019 at 3:44 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Tania,

Typically not all restaurants and food locations are open during Early Park Admission. Some CityWalk locations are, so you could grab Starbucks on your way, for example.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
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