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When to Hop on Universal Studios Hollywood Express Pass

by Leap on April 12, 2021 691 Los Angeles

Universal Studios Hollywood Universal Express Ticket - Pinterest What could be better than a day mingling with minions in the morning, experiencing behind-the-scenes movie magic in the afternoon, followed by the wonders of the Wizarding World of Harry Potter in the evening? The only thing we can think of would be to do all of that without waiting! With the Universal Studios Hollywood Express Pass (formerly known as the Universal Studios Hollywood Front of Line Pass), you can breeze through all of your favorites with priority access. Having this gem is just one part of a fun day here!

The Frog Family jumped at the opportunity to use the Universal Express Pass in the past, and it toadally made our day. Even though these tickets cost more than regular admission, the benefits are well worth it. The park limits the number of Universal Studios Hollywood Express Passes sold each day, so the awesome perks are always maintained. This post will explain all of the Universal Studios Hollywood Express Pass benefits!

But what about now? So far in summer 2021, wait times are currently lower than they were before June 15, 2021, when physical distancing measures prevented the park from filling ride vehicles. Now that rides are full of people instead of empty seats, wait times have dropped. However, wait times will continue to fluctuate as crowds increase.

You can check wait times in the Universal Studios Hollywood app from home throughout the day to get a sense of wait times. (Check it in early afternoon to get the best sense of peak wait times.) If you think the wait times are manageable you can save your money, especially if you plan to use Single Rider lines. That being said, we have never regretted having Universal Express, even on a non-busy day, because shaving even 30 minutes off the wait here and there really adds up to hours of time, allowing us to do everything we want to do in the park. We also arrive before park opening and follow a touring plan. The taller, older frogs in the family hop in the Single Rider lines. These tools help us maximize our time whether we use the Universal Express Pass or not.

When to Hop on Universal Studios Hollywood Express Pass - Pass

It's important to note that a Universal Express Pass is a full ticket that includes admission to Universal Studios Hollywood, plus one-time access to each ride, show and attraction, which is different than the add-on passes sold in the Orlando parks. You present the paper ticket (about the size of a credit card that you receive upon park entry) to be scanned at each ride. You may purchase a regular ticket and upgrade to Universal Express Universal Studios Hollywood — more on that further below.

Do You Need Universal Studios Hollywood Express Passes?

When to Hop on Universal Studios Hollywood Express Pass-Wait time for Jurassic World

We get lots of people asking if they really need Universal Studios Hollywood Express Passes to enjoy their day at the park. And the answer really depends on when you are going. You don't usually need Universal Studios Hollywood Express Pass on weekdays and even some weekends in the off-season, but you'll sure thank your lucky stars for having it on peak summer days, Saturdays and school holidays. Even though the lines are shorter in the off-season, the park hours are shorter, too, so shaving off wait times with Universal Express can still come in handy if you want to squeeze it all in during less crowded times. (Need help deciding when to visit? Check out this post on the best and worst times to go to Universal Studios Hollywood.) Since we are not currently selling Universal Express Passes, you can upgrade your ticket in the park when you arrive.

When to Hop on Universal Studios Hollywood Express Pass - Hogsmeade Entrance

Even though Universal Studios Hollywood Express Pass costs more than a normal ticket, the benefits can toadally make the expense well worth it. Using the Universal Express Pass is just one of the ways to maximize your time at Universal Studios Hollywood. On peak days in the afternoon, the lines can reach up to two hours long for big draws such as Jurassic World — The Ride. But if you have a Universal Express Pass, you walk — or, in our case, hop — right onto rides without even having to wait. That is what sets Universal Express Passes apart from say, Disney’s FASTPASS, which reduces your wait time, but does not send you straight to the front of the line.

Universal Studios Hollywood Universal Express Tips

Enhance your show experience.

When to Hop on Universal Studios Hollywood Express Pass - Animal Actors

The Universal Studios Hollywood Express Pass gets you one-time priority access to each show. It also gets you priority seating. It may include some special meet-and-greets or up-close and personal experiences following shows after the rest of the audience exits. Lily and Tad really enjoyed meeting some of the animals after the Animal Actors Stage show. (That includes a famous owl from the Harry Potter movies!) You should still arrive early to access this seating before other guests enter the stadium.

Consider buying Universal Express Pass strategically.

While it's always great to spend time together as a family, your whole family might not need to purchase Universal Studios Hollywood Express tickets. If your family is only interested in rides, but you have some younger children who won't meet the height requirements (or might be too frightened for the big rides), you probably don't need to purchase Express for them. Or, if you are prone to motion sickness like Flora, you might buy just your older kids an Express Pass and opt out of the pass and thrill rides for yourself. With the much shorter waits thanks to the Universal Studios Hollywood Express Passes, the family will be reunited in no time!

One of the season pass options includes Express access. The Platinum Season Pass comes with one-time per day Express access to each ride, attraction and seated show. People with other passes may choose to upgrade to a Universal Express ticket for the day (subject to availability) at the Box Office

Use Universal Studios Hollywood Universal Express only during long wait times.

When to Hop on Universal Studios Hollywood Express Pass - Despicable Me Minion Mayhem

The Universal Studios Hollywood Express Pass can only be used one time per ride. If you know your froglets want to ride Despicable Me: Minion Mayhem twice, choose your ticket wisely. We rode Minion Mayhem early in the day when the wait was under 15 minutes without scanning our passes. Then, Mommy Frog and Lily rode again later by utilizing Universal Express when the wait was over an hour.

Plan ahead.

When to Hop on Universal Studios Hollywood Express Pass - Flight of the Hippogriff

Universal Studios Hollywood limits the amount of Express Passes sold each day, so if you are concerned about crowds, buy in advance. You can also wait until you are in the park to decide the lines are not for you, but we highly recommend purchasing in the morning as they may sell out. The good part of limiting pass sales is that it means you truly go to the front of the line. Plus, you'll get a better value experience when you use the pass.

When to Hop on Universal Studios Hollywood Express Pass-The Universal Express Pass joins the Secret Life of Pets queue just before this scene.

Save money by visiting at "off-peak" times or less expensive days. The pass can help make your day much more enjoyable if you are visiting during a peak time. But if you purchase the Universal Studios Hollywood Express non-peak ticket, you can save money. Some other affordable time-saving tips include the following:

Upgrade in the park.

If you are really not sure if a Universal Studios Hollywood Express Pass is for you, or you already have your ticket or an annual pass without Express access, you can take a chance on upgrading in the park. Express tickets can sell out on crowded days. On a summer day, we noticed that it was up to $130 to upgrade to a Universal Express ticket for one-time use for each ride. Other days, it is about $69-$150. No matter how you bought your park ticket, you can purchase an upgrade in the park. The cost to upgrade is the same for everyone.

The price may vary — even throughout the day! If you are finding higher waits in the afternoon, on some days Universal may drop the price after 3:30 p.m. So definitely check back if you want to upgrade in the afternoon. You can't count on it being available, but it's worth looking into. You can purchase and upgrade in the Upper Lot at the Box Office or at a kiosk at the bottom of the escalator in the Lower Lot.

The Lower Lot kiosk may have a much shorter line.

Upgrade to Unlimited Universal Express.

If one-time access is simply not enough, there is an Unlimited Universal Express option. Unlimited Universal Express is available in the park. You can upgrade a Universal Express ticket, a regular park ticket or a season pass (subject to availability). If you already have a Universal Express ticket, the cost to upgrade to Unlimited Universal Express is $30-$40. Peak days will be pricier than non-peak days, and they will sell out much faster on peak days. If you have a regular park ticket, it can cost about $100-$170 to upgrade to Unlimited Universal Express. Prices can vary, depending on the day. Weekends are generally more expensive than midweek days. We recommend purchasing discount Universal Express tickets in advance (through Undercover Tourist, when available, of course!) to lock in Express access, and then if you decide you want even more access, you can inquire about Unlimited Universal Express early in the day inside the park.

When to Hop on Universal Studios Hollywood Express Pass-Hollywood Horror Nights Lanyard

Consider bringing a lanyard.

The old Front of Line tickets were given to guests as a lanyard worn around the neck. The current Universal Express Pass tickets are paper tickets about the dimensions of a credit card. You have to pull the pass out each time you need to have it scanned for rides or shows. It can be cumbersome to always pull it out of pockets and backpacks. If you have a lanyard with a clear pocket, bring it along for quick, almost hands-free scanning. You can put two passes back to back in a lanyard for easy scanning if you like. Universal Studios sells souvenir lanyards in the park if you don’t have one.

Buy Universal Express for Horror Nights or special events.

Buy Universal Express for special events such as Universal’s Halloween Horror Nights. We cannot stress this enough. Halloween Horror Nights draws scary huge crowds. Some of the most popular attractions can have waits that last two to four hours! We have been there without the pass, and it is frustrating. We have also been there with the pass and were able to hop through every maze and ride. The pass was well worth it! It's really the only way to do Halloween Horror Nights.

These Universal Express Passes are limited, and they will sell out early. If you plan to attend Horror Nights, make sure to buy early and be sure to get a Universal Express Pass for each member in your party. And remember to bring a lanyard to simplify your night. Otherwise, you need to pull the Universal Express ticket out in the dark for scanning at each maze and risk dropping it in the dark. A lanyard makes your night so much easier! The only way to get Unlimited Universal Express at Halloween Horror Nights is to purchase the R.I.P. Tour.

The Universal Studios Hollywood Express Pass is a great way to help you manage your day. The Express Pass will allow you to experience everything in the park at least once. With the time savings that comes with the pass, you can hit your favorite attractions a second time. It also allows you to relax and enjoy more of the sights, take photos, see shows, meet characters, enjoy your meals, calmly sip Butterbeer, shop for treats and explore Universal CityWalk. Buying the Universal Studios Hollywood Express Pass buys peace of mind. That way, you know you can get it all in, and that equals a good family value.

Did you know the Frog Family offers discount tickets to Southern California attractions? You'll find discounts on Universal Studios Hollywood tickets, as well as more tickets for Universal and other Los Angeles and San Diego attractions.

Related: The Best Times to Visit Universal Studios Hollywood

Keep hopping!

Keep hopping, Leap!
View Comments
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1–50 of 329 comments
Sep 16, 2021 at 1:56 p.m. Natalie Wilkins Says...

Can I buy an express pass for 5 people for 2 weeks?? Or is it better to just book for the days attending?

Reply
Sep 17, 2021 at 11:22 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Natalie!

Just book for the days that you'll be attending!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Sep 16, 2021 at 1:52 p.m. Natalie Wilkins Says...

Will Express passes be back to buy for March 2022

Reply
Sep 17, 2021 at 11:21 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Natalie!

Universal only releases tickets a few months at a time (right now, it's only available up until the end of Jan. 2022), so we'd keep checking back!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Aug 17, 2021 at 5:05 p.m. Corinne Says...

I'm from Canada and I am planning to use my Airmiles to purchase Universal Studio tickets in Orlando. Will I be able to upgrade to express tickets?

Reply
Aug 17, 2021 at 12:32 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Corinne!

Universal Express Passes work a little differently when purchasing for the Orlando parks (can check out our other guide for an overview!). But essentially, the Orlando Express Pass tickets can be bought separately online in advance, and if you get them through us, you can save some green!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Aug 3, 2021 at 2:11 a.m. Heather Overly Says...

Does the express pass work once for every show and every ride? Or are there some rides not included?

Reply
Aug 3, 2021 at 3:48 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Heather!

Yes, the Express Pass includes one-time express access to each ride, attraction, and seated show. Have fun!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Aug 14, 2021 at 12:57 a.m. Heather Says...

I already bought my tickets is there a way to buy the express card

Reply
Aug 16, 2021 at 8:32 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Heather!

It is possible to upgrade, but you must upgrade your ticket inside the park at the Box Office in the Upper Lot or at a kiosk near the bottom of the escalator in the Lower Lot. (If by any chance you're asking about Universal Orlando, then you can purchase Express Passes separately online in advance.)

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jul 1, 2021 at 5:45 p.m. QT Says...

How come you don't have the express tix for Aug 4?

Reply
Jul 1, 2021 at 2:55 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi QT!

We don't currently offer Express Passes for Universal Studios Hollywood. We'll be sure to update this post if that changes!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jun 25, 2021 at 10:14 p.m. Alondra Says...

Am I able to upgrade my regular 1 day California resident ticket to express?

Reply
Jun 26, 2021 at 10:33 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Alondra,

Yes — though you'll need to upgrade at the ticket windows out front or the Box Office inside the park, subject to availability.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jun 25, 2021 at 6:14 p.m. Stephanie Says...

The manager at the ticket booth couldn't answer this one, so please help! We are a family of 4 with a 3 year old. Can I buy 2 express passes for husband and son to ride first, child swap and myself (mother) get on and ride with son without myself purchasing the express?

Ty!

Reply
Jun 25, 2021 at 3:36 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Stephanie!

Generally, anyone riding would need an Express pass to enter the Express line, because typically the family stays together in the line and then swap once they get to the child swap room near the ride's loading area.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jun 14, 2021 at 5:25 a.m. George Says...

Hi! I see in your previous comments you had the express tickets linked out in your tickets section but I don't see the California Resident Express tickets for Universal Hollywood? Is the add-on option still available? I see some one day tickets with Express over $250 and wanted to know if there was a cheaper alternative

Reply
Jun 14, 2021 at 1:58 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi George!

Thank you for checking in with us! Unfortunately, that add-on is no longer available - we'll be sure to update if that changes!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
May 24, 2021 at 10:28 p.m. Cristian Says...

Hi I am a gold annual pass holder and I was wondering if I could use this pass to access the express lanes

Reply
May 25, 2021 at 7:41 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Cristian,

Unfortunately, the Gold Annual Pass does not include any Universal Express benefits (only the Platinum Annual Pass, which is not currently available).

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
May 18, 2021 at 11:49 p.m. Maria Delgadillo Says...

I bought express passes for this upcoming Sunday. I have the confirmation order # and proof I purchased but I never received them through email. I tried contacting universal and been on hold for more than 50 min each time and no answer. I’ve also emailed and no reply. I just want to see if I’m able to show up without any paper tickets and if they can give me some new ones there by showing them my order #. Thanks!

Reply
May 19, 2021 at 10:27 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Maria,

As long as you have your order confirmation number and the tickets were purchased under your name, you shouldn't have any issues with getting your Express tickets printed at the Ticket Window. Just be sure to have your ID and the credit card used to purchase the tickets.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
May 10, 2021 at 8:18 a.m. Alex Says...

Hi I want to ask that I already bought a regular ticket online and I just decided that I want to buy the express actually. In this situation, I can only upgrade my ticket at the park and can't do it online or

return the regular ticket to buy a express ticket instead, right?

Reply
May 10, 2021 at 1:26 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Alex,

At this time, you can only upgrade inside the park. You can do that near the wheelchair rental and at the Box Office once you arrive. It usually does not sell out immediately, but we'd still recommend arriving as early as you can.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Apr 8, 2021 at 6:21 p.m. Adan Garcia Says...

You did not address the issue of, if you can upgrade a one day ticket to an annual pass.

Reply
Apr 15, 2021 at 8:24 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Adan!

Please call 866-258-6546 to see about an upgrade - you'll want to be sure to do this before you enter the park for the day with your ticket :)

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Mar 11, 2021 at 11:53 p.m. Melissa E Says...

You mention in your blog, "It's important to note that a Universal Express Pass is a full ticket that includes admission to Universal Studios Hollywood, plus one-time access to each ride, show and attraction, which is different than the add-on passes sold in the Orlando parks. However, when you show the back of the ticket it says, "Ticket does not include park admission." I have been on hold for 45 minutes with Universal to get clarification. The cost for three of us to go with two express passes is almost $1000 for 3/18.

Reply
Mar 12, 2021 at 8 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Melissa!

Universal Studios Hollywood is not open at this time. Pre-COVID closure, the Express Pass could be purchased either as an add-on once you got to the gate (which is in the photo shown) separate from the cost of your admission ticket, or could be purchased in advance as an admission ticket that included Express perks. Over in Orlando, the Express Pass is only available as an add-on and does not include admission. Hope this helps!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Feb 6, 2021 at 12:18 a.m. Emily Padgett Says...

Hi! I was wondering if you are eligible for express passes if you book into a Universal Hotel? We stayed in Universal Studio resort in Florida and received fast passes so wondering if Hollywood did this too?

Many thanks!

Reply
Feb 8, 2021 at 8:35 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Emily!

Unfortunately, there isn't a similar perk in Hollywood in terms of the Express Pass at this time.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
May 15, 2020 at 8:37 p.m. hayley Says...

can you stay at a universal hotel where you receive the express bands free like Orlando? if so does it work on a 1 night stay

Reply
May 15, 2020 at 4:35 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Hayley!

No, unfortunately there isn't a similar perk in Hollywood with specific partner or Universal hotels providing Express Unlimited. If you'd like Express (which we definitely recommend on busy days!), it can be purchased separately in advance. You can also upgrade at the gate, but that is subject to availability and have been known to sell out, so we recommend hopping on it early :)

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Feb 20, 2020 at 7:38 p.m. Brandi M Singleton Says...

Can you add Express to the military discount tickets that you purchase on base?

Reply
Feb 20, 2020 at 3:21 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Brandi!

You can add Universal Express to any ticket at the ticket booths or the Box Office inside the park.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Feb 19, 2020 at 10:03 p.m. Morten Says...

I am looking at a combi ticket for Universal Studios and Disneyland in California. Is it in any way possible to get the combo ticket with a express pass to universal studios?

Best Regards

Morten

Reply
Feb 21, 2020 at 12:20 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Morten!

We have Universal Studios Hollywood Express tickets (which include general admission)! You can find them here.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Feb 14, 2020 at 6:41 p.m. Jean Says...

Hi - we are headed to Universal Hollywood on Thurs March 19th. This is a non peak pricing day. Do you think an express pass is needed? I feel like the 19th is just before many spring breaks start March 21st. But maybe there are spring breaks already the week of March 16th.

There aren’t a ton of rides but with the shows and open only from 10-6pm want to make sure we get to ride /see everything.

Thanks

Reply
Feb 14, 2020 at 1:22 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jean!

That day is estimated to be an 8/10 according to our Crowd Calendar, so we'd definitely spring for Express! Like you mentioned, Express will also help you to be able to do and see it all in one day with reduced hours. Have a great trip!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Feb 11, 2020 at 8:59 a.m. Melanie Says...

Great article! Is it possible to purchase a 2-day Express Pass? Having been to Disneyland a couple of years ago and used the FastPass system I was slightly surprised at how expensive the Express Pass is at Universal ... We're considering a 2 day visit on 7&8 October. Travelling from Australia. Thanks!

Reply
Feb 11, 2020 at 4:55 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Melanie!

Thanks so much! :) Unfortunately, there is currently not a 2-day Express option; you can either purchase a 2-day ticket and upgrade upon arrival, or buy two separate Express tickets. Hope this helps!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Feb 13, 2020 at 4:23 a.m. lucia Says...

Hi! Do you mean I can buy the 2 day park tickets on this page, but I have to buy the express tickets on the Universal Orlando Resort page?

Reply
Mar 9, 2020 at 10:59 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Lucia,

That is correct!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jan 31, 2020 at 12:01 p.m. Zammiah Smith Says...

I am taking my daughter for a cheer competition she already has a ticket to get into the park. Would it be a better option for me to buy the express pass when I get to the park?

Reply
Feb 3, 2020 at 11:40 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Zammiah!

The Express passes are limited and can sell out (and pricing can go up as it gets closer to your trip), so we'd recommend purchasing in advance if you know for certain that you'd like Express. If you are on the fence, or want to see how the crowds are, you can upgrade in the park if it's still available!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jan 24, 2020 at 7:33 a.m. Jennifer Cooper Says...

Could you please help me understand how the express pass works? It sounds like I will receive a paper ticket which will let me go into a special line where this ticket will be scanned, and my perk for said ride will be marked as used. Is there a way to link your ticket to the app?

So it is not like Disney’s MaxPass where you strategize return windows? But you can’t choose a certain showtime for Waterworld, or the studio tour? Finally, should you still take advantage of a shorter first-ride-of-the-morning line before using the perk?

Reply
Jan 24, 2020 at 2:22 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jennifer!

You are correct in that you will take your ticket to the ride, have it scanned and enter a separate queue that takes you to the front of the line. You do not strategize your windows. You just show up. It works for the Studio Tour too. For shows, you get priority seating. You have a separate queue, and you may have a reserved area or gain admittance early to choose your own seat. You do not link your ticket to the app. There is a virtual line pass for any ticket holder for Water World through the app. We hope this helps!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jan 18, 2020 at 6:59 a.m. Lisa Says...

Hi there, we were thinking of buying the GO LA discount card - as it looks like it's great value. Probably go with the 3 or 5 day option. Only thing is that we are keen on the express tickets for universal. Can you buy the Go LA card with Universal express tickets? Thanks

Reply
Jan 22, 2020 at 2:54 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Lisa!

Yes, you can add Universal Express onto the Go LA card. Once you are in the park, you can add Universal Express to any ticket for an additional fee. Have a great time!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jan 6, 2020 at 6:33 p.m. Hailey Says...

Hello! We are a group of 2 (adults) who are visiting Universal studios (California) for one day late September. We want to experience both the normal park and Halloween Horror Nights. Do you think just buying the Universal Express Ticket with entry to the park at 2pm will be good enough to experience the normal park?

Reply
Jan 7, 2020 at 9:47 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Hailey!

If you want to see it all, it will be tough to do. The Studio Tour takes an hour. If you do this plan, focus on the Studio Tour, the Wizarding World of Harry Potter and maybe choose a must-see show or Despicable Me: Minion Mayhem before Halloween Horror Nights begins. (Those are not available during HHN.) During Halloween Horror Nights, you will be able to ride the Lower Lot Rides, Simpsons Ride and experience The Walking Dead with your Express Pass, so save those experiences for later.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Dec 13, 2019 at 6:35 p.m. Hamza Says...

Hi, we a party of 2 are planning to visit on Dec 30th. Couple of questions:

1. Should we buy a Express pass?

2. should we buy one now (online) or upgrade at the park?

any other tips?

We are in LA for only 3 days and will spend one day here

Reply
Dec 13, 2019 at 4:33 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Hamza!

We definitely would spring for Express, and we recommend doing it online ahead of time as their availability is limited in-park (and can vary in price). Have fun!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Dec 16, 2019 at 9:34 p.m. Hamza Says...

Thanks for your reply. Is it possible that the buying the express passes onsite could be more expensive? I plan on going before park opens on the 30th? I know I need an express pass but am on the fence if I should buy it online in advance or upgrade onsite? Your advice?

Reply
Dec 16, 2019 at 4:37 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Hamza!

Yes, it's possible that buying onsite will be more expensive. We'd definitely purchase in advance!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Dec 12, 2019 at 3:18 a.m. Jessica Says...

Hello, I have purchased regular admission tickets for our visit next month. Does any one know the current price to upgrade a ticket to an express pass?

Reply
Dec 4, 2019 at 8:42 a.m. Himanshu Says...

Hello,

We (party of 2) are planning to visit Universal Hollywood on Dec 20th, 2019 and can't decide if we should or should not purchase the express pass in advance. Any thoughts?

Also, slightly off-topic, but we are also planning to visit Six Flags Magic Mountain on any one day between 21-23 Dec, 2019. Any opinions on when would be the best time and if a Flash Pass for that park is worth purchasing as well?

Thanks!

Reply
Dec 5, 2019 at 11:49 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Himanshu!

The Express Ticket is always helpful. Many kids are already starting break that day so holiday crowds could start to build. As a party of 2, you could always opt for Single Rider lines to save the money and upgrade in the park if you need more. For Six Flags, there are so many coasters. The Flash Pass can help you accomplish more of them. The Flash Pass users can make the stand-by lines even longer! There are different levels of Flash Pass, so research those. Even skipping a few lines will make a big difference in your day. If you wait to purchase in the park to assess the crowds , Flash Pass could sell out midday. It’s a gamble. We say opt for the lowest level and head right when you enter the park. The longest lines are at the coasters to the left (X2, Tatsu). If you go right at park opening, you can possibly run through a lot of coasters before the rest of the crowds make it back there. We say any of those days could have crowds due to school breaks. Hope this helps!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Dec 4, 2019 at 2:57 a.m. shalini Says...

Hello,we are a family of 4 with teenage boys (14 & 16) visiting during christmas holidays around 27 or 28th dec. how many days we need to see just universal studios , 1 or 2 days? thanks

Reply
Dec 4, 2019 at 8:09 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Shalini!

We'd opt for a 2 day park-to-park ticket, especially if you have Harry Potter fans!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Nov 18, 2019 at 9:03 p.m. Juston Says...

We are going the day BEFORE Thanksgiving. Buy the express or nah? 3 of us (2 adults and a 9 year old) Thanks!

Reply
Nov 19, 2019 at 3:39 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Juston!

We'd spring for Express if you can, as that day should be pretty busy :) Have fun!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Nov 13, 2019 at 11:59 a.m. Mickey Says...

We are a family of 5 - 2 adults and 3 kids aged 6, 9 and 11. Planning a one day visit on either Sat 18 or Sun 19 April 2020. This shows up as a 6/10 on the crowd calendar and I think is regarded as mid-peak. Is an express ticket good value on a 6/10 crowd day? Thank you.

Reply
Nov 14, 2019 at 9:19 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Mickey!

We never regret having Express, because on days with shorter hours, it’s hard to get all that Universal has to offer in without it. If you aren't sold on purchasing in advance, you can always upgrade in-park if there's still availability!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Nov 5, 2019 at 2:53 a.m. Matias Says...

Great site! "Early entry" doesn't seem to be available now (Fall 2019), through the universal site, even through their hotel partner thing. Is that true or am I missing something? Thanks!

Reply
Nov 5, 2019 at 3:29 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Matias!

That's correct. Universal has stopped offering early entry during non-peak times, and do not plan to offer it for Thanksgiving (or Christmas). They may bring it back for peak times in the future, though! When it is offered, it will specify on the ticket if it is valid for early entry. When early entry is not offered, the hotel packages will not have early entry access, either. Hope this helps!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Nov 4, 2019 at 9:30 a.m. Sue-Ann Says...

Hi, we will be visiting from Australia and plan to spend NYE at universal studios. Do you know what time the park stays open until?

Reply
Nov 4, 2019 at 12:41 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Sue-Ann!

The park is scheduled to be open until 10 p.m. that night, but CityWalk will be open until 2 a.m. Have fun!

Keep hopping!

Leap

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Oct 29, 2019 at 1:20 a.m. Kass Cel Says...

Can we upgrade to express pass for tickets purchased from go city card?

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Oct 29, 2019 at 12:44 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Kass!

You sure can! You can upgrade to Universal Express at the ticket booths out front or at the Box Office inside the park (just walk straight after entering the park).

Keep hopping!

Leap

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Dec 25, 2019 at 4:39 a.m. Hitesh Says...

Can you upgrade these online ahead of visiting the park?

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Dec 26, 2019 at 9:07 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Hitesh!

These can be upgraded at the ticket booth before entering the park; at this time, there is an option to purchase an Express ticket online, but not an option to upgrade an existing ticket to Express. Hope this helps!

Keep hopping!

Leap

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Oct 24, 2019 at 8:31 p.m. Jackie Says...

Does Universal Studios Hollywood offer express passes with certain hotel stays like Universal Orlando? Also, is the crowd of Hollywood compare to the crowd in Orlando during the month of October? Thank you!

Reply
Oct 25, 2019 at 9:06 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jackie!

No, Express Passes are not offered with hotel stays in Hollywood like they are in Orlando. The crowds during the month of October are pretty comparable. Both see an uptick in attendance at similar times due to school breaks, and both see increased crowds on the weekends. You can compare specific dates on our Crowd Calendars here and here. Hope this helps!

Keep hopping!

Leap

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Oct 14, 2019 at 6:18 p.m. Crystal Says...

I will be visiting with my two kids in December 17/18/19 are park days! We already have park to park tickets, how much would it cost to upgrade these to express pass so we can skip the line ups?

Reply
Oct 15, 2019 at 9:33 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Crystal!

The cost to upgrade to Express Passes varies by day. A good way to judge the cost to upgrade is to see what the price difference between a regular one-day ticket and a same-day Express ticket on Universal's site and base your estimation on that. Keep in mind that these can sell out, so if you do decide you'd like to upgrade, we recommend doing this in advance.

Keep hopping!

Leap

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Oct 12, 2019 at 2:35 a.m. Dia Says...

Hi, I would like to know what percentage of customers make use of priority passes.

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Oct 15, 2019 at 3:49 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Dia!

Universal caps sales at a certain percentage. We don’t know what it is, but we think it’s about 10%. Daily usage can vary. More people tend to purchase on more crowded days vs. on quiet days.

Keep hopping!

Leap

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Sep 28, 2019 at 5:17 p.m. Lesley Says...

We will be at Universal Studios Hollywood 10/20/19. We are a party of 3 adults and 2 children (7 & 6 y.o.) We have the Universal Express tickets. How busy will the park be? I realize this is a weekend day, should we upgrade to VIP? Any suggestions are appreciated as this will be our first time there.

Reply
Sep 30, 2019 at 11:35 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Lesley!

There is a long weekend for Utah schools that affects Disneyland crowds that weekend, but that may or may not impact Universal. Our advice is to arrive early and follow our touring plan to help guide you. The morning is the least crowded. You’ll want to tackle the Lower Lot rides in the morning when they open that area. With Universal Express, you should be able to get on all the rides and see a show or two. Remember, the park closes at 6 p.m., so you’ll want to keep a pretty good pace during the day and save some shopping for the end. Have fun!

Keep hopping!

Leap

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Sep 24, 2019 at 4:10 p.m. arsenio toscani Says...

Hi, sorry but I have a question : october 24 2019, is horror night in universal los angeles. I will buy a normal ticket for the normal park attraction ( me, my wife and 3 kids) , the question is : I must go out to the park at 7:00 pm ( when horror night start up) or I can stay inside to 22:00 pm, as writed in the universal sudios normal time ? thank you very much for the answer.

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Sep 24, 2019 at 2:06 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Arsenio!

We're hoppy to help! On nights when Halloween Horror Nights is going on, guests with regular park admission (not HHN admission) will need to leave the park when the event begins on the Universal Studios Florida side, while Islands of Adventure will remain open a bit later; it looks like Universal Studios Florida's hours that day are from 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. (with Horror Nights beginning shortly thereafter); Islands of Adventure's hours are 9 a.m. - 8 p.m.

Keep hopping!

Leap

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Sep 24, 2019 at 3:47 a.m. Brenda Says...

Planning a 2 or 3 day trip to Universal Studios Hollywood on Nov. 25 - Nov. 27. High crowds 9/10 according to your calendar. I'm considering purchasing the Buy a Day, Get a 2nd Day Free Fall Offer. Considering the high crowds, do you think there is also a high risk of Express Upgrades at the gate selling out during the Thanksgiving week? Should I skip the Fall Offer and purchase the Express Tickets in advance? Or do you think we'd be okay with upgrading at the gate?

Reply
Sep 24, 2019 at 2:12 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Brenda!

It’s possible for Express to sell out at peak times. Buying is advance is the only guarantee. Hope this helps!

Keep hopping!

Leap

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Sep 21, 2019 at 7:22 p.m. Sunny Says...

Hi,

Does express pass include all the rides at Universal Hollywood?

Reply
Sep 23, 2019 at 8:53 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Sunny!

Yes, the Express Pass at Universal Studios Hollywood includes one-time access to each ride, show and attraction.

Keep hopping!

Leap

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Sep 12, 2019 at 9 p.m. Meleina garcia Says...

I have a question so if I get the universal express tickets so I only get to ride the rides and go on mazes just one time?i can’t go on them again?

Reply
Sep 12, 2019 at 4:16 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Meleina!

That's correct; Express Pass grants you one time front-of-the-line access, though you can check on Unlimited Express at the park to see if it's available! Unlimited Express would allow you to jump to the front of the line as many times as you'd like versus just the one time.

Keep hopping!

Leap

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Sep 8, 2019 at 10:10 a.m. Elizabeth Says...

Its been 2 years since we last travelled to Universal & back then we were able to buy the unlimited access ticket online however I can only see the standard express one time ticket available for purchase... is the unlimited version only available in the park & not for pre-purchase? Thanks!

Reply
Sep 9, 2019 at 4:20 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Elizabeth!

You can purchase the Unlimited Express ticket in the park or upgrade an Express ticket when purchasing through Universal online … just keep clicking through and you will get the option to upgrade after you put the tickets in your cart.

Keep hopping!

Leap

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Sep 4, 2019 at 1:50 p.m. Roz Says...

We are planning to go to the HHN at Hollywood on Sunday 27th October 2019 with a express pass after 2p.m.. Will we have enough time to experience all the rides and shows before the start of HHN at 7 pm or would we need to visit a 2nd time during the daytime to fit in all the rides?

Reply
Sep 4, 2019 at 5:12 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Roz!

No, you will not have time to experience all the rides, but you can do a lot if you use your Express Pass well. If you have never been to Universal Studios and want to do it all, we recommend a full day in the park. When you arrive at 2 p.m. focus on the Wizarding World, Studio Tour, Despicable Me: Minion Mayhem and Kung Fu Panda (if those are important to you). You can use your Express Pass for other rides that will be open during the party.

Keep hopping!

Leap

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Aug 28, 2019 at 8:11 p.m. Jim Duggan Says...

WE have a Party of 5 Around Oct 24-26 just one day. My youngest is 17 and disabled, cognitively about 4 years old. When were were last there, about 2015 we used his pass for he, my wife and I, and my daughters in their early 20s daughters bought fast passes. Occasionally My wife or I would would swap and use the fast pass while my daughters took care of my son. He still would only go on kids rides then and now. Is the fast pass system still the same and are there "kid friendly attractions in the new section of the park?

Reply
Aug 29, 2019 at 3:34 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jim!

You’ll want to talk to the park about an Attraction Assistance Pass for people with certain disabilities. You can collect one return time at a time so you can wait in an alternate area for rides your son can go on. The pass is good for up to four people total. If you want to go on rides that he is not interested in, or you have more 4 people, then the Universal Express pass can help you go to the front of the line. Single rider lines are a less-expensive, but more limited, option. There is a child switch area where you can wait with your son and take turns riding. The most kid-friendly attractions would be Silly Swirly, Despicable Me: Minion Mayhem, Kung Fu Panda, Flight of the Hippogriff, and the Studio Tour.

Keep hopping!

Leap

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Aug 16, 2019 at 4:58 a.m. KAthleen Says...

We have 4 express tickets but a child’s illness will prevent us from going. How tough are they but not transferable? I want to give our tickets to a friend.

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Aug 19, 2019 at 10:34 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Kathleen!

They have not checked IDs when we have entered the park, but we'd suggest giving them a call to see if there's any options available to you ahead of time to make sure there aren't any entry issues.

Keep hopping!

Leap

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Aug 15, 2019 at 12:06 p.m. Nada Jovic Says...

My friend and I plan to come on a mid-peak day but I can't figure out if I should buy the express in advance or not! Coming from Canada so it is already an expense, not sure if it's worth the upgrade. any insight?

Reply
Aug 19, 2019 at 10:28 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Nada!

It’s a tough call. You can always arrive early and follow our touring plan. Use Single Rider lines for many rides. If you feel like the lines are too much, upgrade to Express in the park.

Keep hopping!

Leap

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Aug 14, 2019 at 2:32 a.m. Renee Says...

Hi! thanks for all the information ! I'm interested on buying tickets on Sept 15, these are de ones that you can enter after 2pm and includes HHN. What's your opinion on this tickets?. Thank you!!

Reply
Aug 14, 2019 at 10:58 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Renee!

It’s a good way to see some (but not all) of the daytime attractions. We highly recommend the Universal Express ticket to make the most of your time.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Aug 13, 2019 at 9:41 p.m. Larissa Says...

We already have Universal tickets that we purchased years ago, but they do not have an expiration date. How much would it cost to add express passes to our regular tickets? We are planning to go the last week of February 2021. Or, would it be less expensive to stay at a deluxe hotel for a couple of nights and get the EP perk then transfer to a moderately priced Universal hotel? Thank you!

Reply
Aug 14, 2019 at 10:58 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Larissa!

Universal Studios Hollywood does not have any associated hotels with perks like Universal Orlando does, though it does offer partner hotels. As far as Express Passes go, a good way to judge the cost to upgrade is to see what the price difference between a regular one-day ticket and a same-day Express ticket and base your estimation on that.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Aug 13, 2019 at 4:45 a.m. Karen Wolf Says...

Hi, great info on your blog. We will be going to the park this Thursday Aug 15. Can you give us info on what to expect crowd wise? Happy to say we bought express passes! Thank you

Reply
Aug 13, 2019 at 10:23 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Karen!

Thanks for hopping by (and for the kind words!) According to our Crowd Calendar, Thursday looks to be about a 7/10. Your Express Passes will certainly help. Have a great time!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Aug 12, 2019 at 7:06 a.m. Michelle Says...

Hi, we are planning to go August 30th, do you think we need express pass? If we do get express pass can we upgrade to unlimited on the day if need be?

Reply
Aug 12, 2019 at 3:01 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Michelle!

That day looks to be moderate in terms of crowds according to our Crowd Calendar (6/10). You can either upgrade to add an Express Pass at the park, or to an Unlimited Pass when you arrive, as well. Keep in mind that these can sell out, so it's best to make that decision early on in the day. Have fun!

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Aug 6, 2019 at 4:38 p.m. Jenn Says...

Hi, we are visiting August 28th or 29th 2019. I want to get a Go Pass to do other attractions as well during the week but concerned about not being able to upgrade when I arrive (sold out). Do you anticipate the crowds being large that day? Thanks!

Reply
Aug 6, 2019 at 1:44 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Jenn!

According to our Crowd Calendar, both of those days are forecast to be a 5/10 in terms of crowds, so upgrading shouldn't be an issue.

Keep hopping!

Leap

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