Tips for Plus-Size Guests at Universal Orlando Resort
During a recent visit to Universal Orlando Resort (UOR), I was reminded that many of their theme park rides are not plus-size friendly, which is a stark contrast to the rides at Walt Disney World. While there is still plenty to see and do at UOR beyond the rides, it is always a good idea to be prepared ahead of time for specific rides that may be an issue.
Universal Studios Florida
Let’s first dive into rides and attractions at Universal Studios that commonly give plus-size guests issues, along with the type of restraint used and helpful tips if issues arise.
- Despicable Me Minion Mayhem – has a lap bar restraint; ask for the back row for additional leg room
- ET Adventure Ride – has a lap bar restraint; ask for a bench seat
- Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts – has a lap bar restraint; ask for the modified seats in the back row of each cart
- Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit – has a lap bar restraint; ask for modified seats in rows one or four; note that riders taller than 79” will not be permitted to ride
- Race through New York starring Jimmy Fallon – has a seatbelt restraint; request a seat belt extender
- Revenge of the Mummy – has a lap bar restraint; ask to sit in the modified seats in the back row
There are test seats at the following ride entrances at Universal Studios that you may try before boarding – Revenge of the Mummy, Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit, Race through New York starring Jimmy Fallon, Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts. Ask the ride attendant if you don’t see the test seat and they will direct you to it. In most instances there is a red light, green light system. A green light means you are cleared to ride.
Islands of Adventure
Now let’s look at the rides and attractions at Islands of Adventure that commonly give plus-size guests issues, along with the type of restraint used and helpful tips if issues arise.
- Doctor Doom’s Fearfall – has an overhead restraint; no modified seating options
- Dudley Do-Right’s Ripsaw Falls – has a lap bar restraint; ask for an ADA seat accommodation
- Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventures – has a lap bar restraint; ask for the motorbike seat instead of the sidecar; has a moving platform, ask for stationary entry option if you need extra time to board
- Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey – has an overhead restraint; ask for seat at the end of the row; has a moving platform, ask for stationary entry option if you need extra time to board and get situated
- Flight of the Hippogriff – has a lap bar restraint; ask to sit alone as a single-rider
- The Incredible Hulk Coaster – has an overhead restraint; ask for a modified seat in various rows (will have two orange seat buckles instead of one)
- Jurassic World VelociCoaster – has a lap bar restraint; no modified seating options
There are test seats at the following ride entrances at Islands of Adventure that you may try before boarding – The Incredible Hulk Coaster, Doctor Doom’s Fearfall, Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey, Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventures, and Velocicoaster. Again, riders are cleared with a green light in the test seats.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: If I am close to fitting, will the ride attendant assist me in getting the restraint secured?
A: This is a MAYBE, but don’t count on it. If the ride attendant were to hurt you or cause injury, that is problematic for Universal Orlando.
Q: Can I wait with my party in the queue line and not ride the ride?
A: Absolutely. Just let the ride attendant know as you approach the loading area.
Q: Can I be called out of line prior to loading to try a test seat?
A: Yes. It is not uncommon and also not super pleasant, but it happens. This is how Universal prevents hold-ups or problems during the loading process.
Universal Big Time is a great resource with detailed attraction information, test seat photos, and downloadable resources.
While it can be frustrating to have ride issues due to physical size, being prepared and knowledgeable when going to UOR is key to having a positive experience.
Originally published February 11, 2021. Last updated / republished March 12, 2023.
8 thoughts on “Tips for Plus-Size Guests at Universal Orlando Resort”
One important addendum for Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit:
Guests must be no more than 79″ tall.
Team members may instruct tall guests to stand under a height bar before boarding to check their height. I know this from experience since I’m 78″ tall 🙂
For anyone riding the Jurassic Park River Adventure, only the front row will be a slight hassle since it has a smaller width than the rest. Also it is one singular lap bar that goes across everyone in your row and stops lowering on first contact: good to think about if the rest of your group does not share your size. And PLEASE ask questions if you’re unsure. That’s what the Team Members are for. 🙂
Thank you so much for this list!!!!
This list may have to be updated..I was just at Universal Studios in Orlando, FL. and was told by staff they discontinued seat belt extenders for Bluto’s Barges
For me, The Hulk seats were the tightest fight of all the seats. So if you are borderline this is a ride you may need the modified seats.
Hi, what seats have one bar please? Also which seats might a small child move around a lot if sitting with a larger guest?
I’m travelling with young family members and want to enjoin the rides I can with the kids but don’t want them to be scared or hurt if they are given too much room. I’d really appreciate help with this.
have you ever considered writing a review for someone who is claustrophobic? I went this summer to Universal for the 1st time and found very few rides that I could ride. It was in part due to their seats and restraints and in part a result of the ride assistants needing restraints to be super tight against me. This was never an issue for me at WDW. I could ride anything, but Universal for me is very limiting.
I have a question. Is the test seat a regular ride seat or the modified size seat?
So if I fail the test seat, the modified seat wouldn’t work either?