When planning a trip to Universal Studios, one crucial factor to consider is how to maximize your time and experience at the park. One of the best ways to do this is by obtaining an Express Pass, which allows you to skip the regular lines at most attractions. But did you know that certain hotels offer complimentary Express Passes to their guests? In this comprehensive guide, we will explore what hotels offer this fantastic perk.
The hotels that offer Express Passes for Universal Studios are the Hard Rock Hotel at Universal Orlando, Loews Portofino Bay Hotel, and the Loews Royal Pacific Resort. By staying at these hotels, guests receive complimentary Universal Express Unlimited ride access, allowing them to skip regular lines at most attractions in Universal Studios Florida and Universal Islands of Adventure.
Universal Orlando Resort Hotels Offering Express Passes
Three Universal Orlando Resort hotels offer complimentary Universal Express Unlimited ride access for their guests:
- Hard Rock Hotel at Universal Orlando
- Loews Portofino Bay Hotel
- Loews Royal Pacific Resort
By staying at one of these hotels, guests can enjoy exclusive benefits, including skipping regular lines at Universal Studios Florida and Universal Islands of Adventure with the Universal Express Unlimited pass.
Benefits of Staying at a Hotel Offering Express Passes
Staying at a hotel offering Express Passes for Universal Studios comes with several benefits:
- Free Universal Express Unlimited ride access: This allows you to skip regular lines at most attractions, providing a more enjoyable and less stressful experience.
- Early Park Admission: Guests of all Universal Orlando Resort Hotels can enter The Wizarding World of Harry Potter and Universal Volcano Bay an hour earlier than other guests, provided they have valid theme park admission.
- Free transportation: Universal hotels offer free water taxis or shuttles to the parks, making it convenient for guests to travel between their hotel and the parks.
- Walking distance to parks: Most of Universal’s hotels and parks are connected with walking paths, allowing guests to easily walk between their hotel and the parks.
- Room key convenience: Guests can charge purchases across the resort to their room key card, simplifying the payment process.
- Free merchandise delivery: Guests can have their purchases from the resort’s shops delivered to their Universal hotel for free.
- Exclusive wake-up calls: Guests can receive an exclusive Universal wake-up call each morning.
- Priority seating at restaurants: Guests of Premier hotels can enjoy priority seating at many Universal Orlando restaurants by showing their valid room key to the hostess.
How to Obtain an Express Pass from These Hotels
To obtain an Express Pass from these hotels, you need to stay at one of the Universal Premier hotels. Upon arrival at the resort, there is a machine that takes your photo, and you will be given a card. It is recommended to buy a lanyard to wear the card around your neck for easy access when using the Express Pass at the theme parks. If you’re staying at a Universal hotel that offers the free Express Pass benefit, your hotel room key will act as the pass.
Restrictions or Limitations on the Use of These Express Passes
While Express Passes offer many benefits, there are some restrictions and limitations:
- Express Passes must be purchased separately from your theme park admission.
- Not all attractions participate in the Express Pass program. For example, Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure and Pteranodon Flyers may use a Virtual Line system instead.
- Some unique ride queues might be missed when using the Express Pass, as the Express Pass line may bypass certain parts of the queue.
Comparing Hotel Express Pass Offerings to Purchasing Directly from Universal Studios
When comparing the cost of purchasing Express Passes directly from Universal Studios, staying at a Premier hotel can save you a significant amount of money. For example, a long weekend trip for four guests at Loews Royal Pacific costs $981, including taxes and fees for three days and two nights. In contrast, purchasing the same two-park Unlimited Express Passes separately would cost over $1400 for the same tickets, not including the price of a hotel.
In conclusion, staying at a Universal Premier hotel and taking advantage of the complimentary Express Unlimited Passes can be a more cost-effective option compared to purchasing Express Passes directly from Universal Studios. It also adds a level of convenience and luxury to your Universal Studios experience. Happy travels!
Frequently Asked Questions
How many people can use a single Express Pass?
Each Express Pass is tied to an individual person and can only be used by that person. It cannot be shared among multiple people.
Can I use my Express Pass during Early Park Admission?
No, Express Passes are not valid during Early Park Admission. They are only valid during regular park hours.
Are Express Passes valid at Universal’s Volcano Bay?
Yes, Express Passes are valid at Volcano Bay. However, not all attractions at Volcano Bay participate in the Express Pass program.
Do I have to stay at a Universal Premier hotel to get an Express Pass?
No, you can also purchase an Express Pass separately from Universal Studios. However, staying at a Universal Premier hotel offers the added benefit of getting a complimentary Express Pass.
Can I purchase an Express Pass at the park?
Yes, you can purchase an Express Pass at the park. However, availability is limited and can sell out, so it’s recommended to purchase in advance.
Can I use my Express Pass on multiple days?
Express Passes are valid for one day only. If you’re staying at a Universal Premier hotel, you will receive a new Express Pass for each day of your stay.
Are Express Passes available for all attractions?
Most attractions participate in the Express Pass program, but there are a few exceptions. For example, Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure and Pteranodon Flyers use a Virtual Line system instead.