Universal Orlando News — Week of December 15, 2018

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Universal has changed their ticket pricing system. Will their new model save you money or cost you more? We look at all that and more inside.

Park Ticket Price Changes

Universal Orlando quietly updated their park ticket pricing this week for one-day tickets. Previously one-day tickets were available in two tiers: Value Season tickets ($115 per adult plus tax) and Anytime Season ($129 per adult plus tax). Now tickets are offered in three flavors:

  • Value Season Ticket: $114 per adult plus tax, a decrease in $1 per ticket. Valid only on Value Season days.
  • Regular Season Ticket: $122 per adult plus tax, a new tier. Valid on Regular and Value Season days.
  • Anytime Season Ticket: $129 per adult plus tax, no change. Valid for any day of the year.

Below is a comparison between the old ticket pricing and the new ticket pricing for December 17-22.

We initially worried Universal was cutting back on Value Season days as a way of increasing profits. Instead Regular Season has absorbed both Value and Anytime Season dates, providing savings or price increases depending on the day you visit. This adds more complexity to trip planning for guests but does potentially offer savings for those purchasing one-day tickets.

Value Season tickets can only be used on Value Season days and Anytime Season tickets can be used on any day. The new Regular Season tickets can be used on both Regular Season and Value Season days. While the Regular and Anytime Season tickets appear to offer flexibility on when you can visit, guests can purchase day-of tickets online without penalty. Buying a Value Season ticket the day you visit online instead of an Anytime Season ticket could save you $15 per ticket.

Season Passes, Annual Passes, and multi-day ticket prices remain unchanged.

Weekly Crowd Levels

Detailed crowd level information can be found here.

Weather Report

Winter weather around the country routinely comes as far south as Orlando. Make sure to pack for the weather. Volcano Bay could close due to cold weather; check the Universal Orlando and TouringPlans Twitter accounts for the latest operating information.

Park Hours

CityWalk is open until 2:00 a.m. daily, with free self parking starting after 6:00 p.m.


One-day tickets are at Regular Season pricing this week:

Saturday Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
One Park $122 $122 $122 $122 $122 $122 $122
Two Park $177 $177 $177 $177 $177 $177 $177

Two-day, two-park tickets are $274.99 per adult and $264.99 per child (plus tax).

Volcano Bay tickets are at Anytime pricing at $80 per adult and $75 per child (plus tax).

Refurbishments and Showtimes

  • No scheduled refurbishments or closures
  • Universal’s Cinematic Celebration: December 17 – 20 at 8:00 p.m.; December 21 at 9:00 p.m.
  • The Magic of Christmas at Hogwarts Castle: Nightly after dusk

Complete showtimes are available on Universal Orlando’s website.


Deck the halls at Universal Orlando Resort November 17, 2018 – January 6, 2019 with their annual Holiday festivities. Join The Grinch in Seuss Landing and see a live performance of How the Grinch Stole Christmas, celebrate in Universal Studios Florida with Universal’s Holiday Parade featuring Macy’s, or visit the Wizarding World decked out in Christmas decorations. For more information check out our Universal Orlando Holidays 2018 article.

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 leading the young men of his fraternity.