Universal Orlando Resort Preview – Week of December 30

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The holidays are underway at Universal Orlando, but we look ahead to the first few days of 2018. Toast the new year at Universal with EVE at CityWalk, enjoy one last meal at Emeril’s Tchoup Chop, and see Blue Man Group with discounted tickets.

Weekly Crowd Levels


Holiday crowds are at Universal Orlando. Expect crowded park areas, long lines for food and drink, and long waits for attractions. See wait times and create touring plans in the Lines App for Universal Orlando.

Detailed crowd level information can be found here.

Weather Report

Cold weather comes to Florida as temperatures reach the low 60s and high 50s. Make sure to pack for the weather. The cold weather could affect operating hours of Volcano Bay; check the Universal Orlando and TouringPlans Twitter accounts for the latest operating information.

Winter weather around the United States will affect travel plans, keep an eye out for delayed and canceled flights.

Park Hours and Admission

CityWalk is open until 2 a.m. with free self parking starting after 6 p.m.

Single-day park tickets are at Anytime pricing December 30, 2017 – January 3, 2018. One-day base tickets to Universal Studios Florida or Islands of Adventure will run you $124 per adult and $119 per child (plus tax). 2-Park 1-Day tickets are $179 per adult and $174 per child (plus tax).

Single-day park tickets are at Value pricing January 4, 2018 and January 5, 2018. One-day base tickets to Universal Studios Florida or Islands of Adventure will run you $110 per adult and $105 per child (plus tax). 2-Park 1-Day tickets are $165 per adult and $160 per child (plus tax).

Volcano Bay tickets are at Anytime pricing at $67 per adult and $62 per child (plus tax).

Emeril’s Tchoup Chop

Photo courtesy of Touring Plans

Lots of theme park attractions closed this year, but Emeril’s Tchoup Chop’s quiet closing has largely fallen between the cracks. Tchoup Chop is the premier restaurant at Loews Royal Pacific Resort, focusing on pan-Asian cuisine.

The restaurant is one large seating space with an open-air kitchen, bar, and large reflecting fountain. The drink menu is an eclectic mix of wine, craft beer, sake, and tiki drink selections (including a Mai Tai that is served in its own mug). Long considered a hidden jewel, the food at Tchoup Chop is a mix of surf and turf, sushi, ribs, duck, and steak. Tchoup Chop is a fan favorite, an oasis of fine food and drink within the Universal Orlando resort.

Photo courtesy of Touring Plans

Tchoup Chop’s last seating will be on December 31, 2017 and will close for a new concept. We will miss the unique food options, elegant and calming atmosphere, and strong drink menu at Universal Orlando. For other options check out Strong Water Tavern at Loews Sapphire Falls, Vivo and Emeril’s at CityWalk, and Bice Ristorante at Loews Portofino Bay Resort.

Weekly Highlights 

Universal is ringing in the New Year with EVE at CityWalk. Unlimited gourmet cuisine, an outdoor dance floor, access to the six dance clubs in CityWalk, a midnight toast, and fireworks are included in the ticket price (drinks are provided but not included). For those looking for exclusive areas and shorter bar lines check out the VIP ticket. VIPs are provided their own entrance, private areas and bars in CityWalk, exclusive food options, and two complementary drinks at the VIP bars (for drinks up to $15 per ticket).

Tickets are $139.99 per adult (plus tax) and VIP tickets are $224.99 per adult (plus tax). Annual Passholders receive a 10% discount on each ticket level.

Blue Man Group is offering a chance to purchase discounted tickets November 1, 2017 through January 1, 2018 starting at $49. If the show has piqued your interest now is the time to see the show.

That is all for this week. See you next week and make sure to leave a question below for the Mail Bag!

Joseph Matt

Avid amusement park and video game fan. Enjoys picking up rare beers at breweries, exploring cities, cooking, and sports.

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