Time is winding down on your Orlando vacation getaway and you still want to experience Universal Orlando to its fullest. That means visiting as many attractions, restaurants and live entertainment venues as you can at Universal Studios, Universal’s Islands of Adventure and Universal CityWalk in just one day. Impossible? Not if you plan ahead and follow the Universal Orlando time-saving tips below:
- Schedule your Universal Orlando vacation during times when attendance is lightest – from mid-September until just before Thanksgiving, after Thanksgiving until a week before Christmas and mid-January until just before Presidents’ week in February.
- Arrive at Universal Orlando early – at least a half hour before it officially opens – so you can get a jump on the crowds.
- Use Universal Orlando theme park maps and tip boards to develop a plan in order to visit as many attractions as possible.
- Don’t follow the crowd – Many people will go to the right and move clockwise throughout either Universal Studios or Universal’s Islands of Adventure theme park, so try going left and moving counterclockwise.
- If you want to experience The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man, make it your first stop since it is the most popular attraction at Universal’s Islands of Adventure and draws some of the longest lines.
- Avoid driving to or from Universal Orlando on Interstate 4 during rush hour, which usually runs from 7 to 9 AM and 4 to 7 PM.
- Buy preferred parking for a few extra dollars and you will be able to park in the parking area nearest to the entrance of Universal Orlando theme parks.
- Better yet, take advantage of valet parking, which costs $22 per day. Just follow the signs to “Valet Parking” once you enter Universal Orlando.
- Eat a good breakfast before you get to Universal Orlando. Once there, try to eat lunch a little earlier or later than usual to avoid crowds (before 12 PM or after 2 PM).
- Take advantage of Universal Orlando’s “child swap program” by going to the designated child swap area at each attraction. Essentially one member of your party can watch the kids while the rest of your group enjoys the ride. After the ride, you just swap places.
- If you are planning to dine at one of Universal CityWalk’s themed restaurants, make reservations well in advance if possible.
In addition to the tips above, make sure you purchase Universal Studios or Universal’s Islands of Adventure theme park tickets in advance online and avoid long lines at ticket windows, while enjoying substantial savings in the process.