Universal Express Passes: What You Need to Know

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While we’ve covered the ins and outs of Genie+ at Walt Disney World, did you know there’s a way to skip attraction lines when visiting Universal Orlando, too? Express Passes at Universal allow you to drastically cut down on the time you spend in line at Universal Studios, Islands of Adventure, and Volcano Bay. Here’s what you need to know about Express Passes at Universal Orlando. 

How Express Passes Work  

Express Passes give you front-of-line access to many attractions at Universal Orlando. There’s no advanced reservation system or return times—you simply walk up to the attraction you want to use it at, present your pass to a Team Member, and get in the Express Pass Lane. 

Express Passes are an add-on service to your daily theme park admission. You’ll need to purchase an Express Pass for each member of your party for each day you want to use the pass. You can purchase Express Passes when you book your vacation package or any time before your trip. You can also purchase Express Passes at the park on the day you visit. However, they can sell out, so we recommend buying the passes beforehand. 

Types of Express Passes 

Each type of Express Pass comes with a one-park or two-park option. Express Pass pricing varies by day and season. Contact your Wishing On A Star Travel® agent to ensure you get the best deal. Here are the different types of Express Passes:

 Universal Express 

The standard Express Pass allows you to skip the standby line at each included attraction once per day. Universal Express Passes start at $79.99 per ticket per day. 

Universal Express Unlimited 

Universal Express Unlimited Passes allow you to ride included attractions as many times as you want in a single day. This is a great option for thrill seekers who may want to ride some of Universal’s biggest roller coasters more than once without waiting in long lines. Express Unlimited passes start at $109.99 per ticket. 

Volcano Bay Express 

These Express Passes are exclusively used at Volcano Bay, Universal’s water park. While Volcano Bay utilizes virtual queues for all its attractions, having an Express Pass lets you skip the line entirely at select attractions. The Express Pass is automatically connected to your TapuTapu bracelet, so you can just walk up to an attraction and ride it without getting a return time. There is also an Express Plus option at Volcano Bay, which allows you to skip the virtual queues at all attractions in the park. 

Seasonally: Halloween Horror Night Express Pass

An additional Express Pass is available during Halloween Horror Nights (HHN) in the fall. When you have an express pass for HHN, you can skip the line at included attractions open during the event and at the themed haunted houses throughout the park. Since lines for the houses can be long on event nights, getting an Express Pass will allow you to experience as much as possible during this separately ticketed event. 

Attractions Included with Express Passes 

Here are the attractions that are included with Express Passes. These rides can change periodically, so check out the complete attraction list here

Universal Studios 

  • The Bourne Stuntacular
  • Despicable Me Minion Mayhem
  • E.T. Adventure
  • Fast & Furious – Supercharged
  • Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts™
  • Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit
  • Hogwarts™ Express (Park-to-Park admission ticket required)
  • Illumination’s Villain-Con Minion Blast
  • Kang & Kodos’ Twirl ‘n’ Hurl
  • MEN IN BLACK™ Alien Attack™
  • Race Through New York Starring Jimmy Fallon
  • Revenge of the Mummy
  • The Simpsons Ride™

Islands of Adventure 

  • The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man®
  • Caro-Seuss-el™
  • The Cat in the Hat™
  • Doctor Doom’s Fearfall®
  • Dudley Do-Right’s Ripsaw Falls®
  • Flight of the Hippogriff™
  • Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey™
  • The High in the Sky Seuss Trolley Train Ride!™
  • Hogwarts™ Express 
  • The Incredible Hulk Coaster®
  • Jurassic Park River Adventure
  • Jurassic World VelociCoaster
  • One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish™
  • Popeye & Bluto’s Bilge-Rat Barges®
  • Skull Island: Reign of Kong
  • Storm Force Accelatron®

Note: Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure™ and Pteranodon Flyers are not included with Express Passes. 

Volcano Bay 

  • Honu of Honu ika Moana
  • ika Moana of Honu ika Moana
  • Krakatau Aqua Coaster
  • Maku of Maku Puihi Round Raft Rides
  • Puihi of Maku Puihi Round Raft Rides
  • Punga Racers
  • Taniwha Tubes

Included with Express Plus: 

  • Kala & Tai Nui Serpentine Body Slides
  • Ko’okiri Body Plunge
  • Ohno of Ohyah & Ohno Drop Slides
  • Ohyah of Ohyah & Ohno Drop Slides

Get Express Passes For Free When You Stay at a Universal Hotel

 One of the biggest perks of staying at a Premier Resort at Universal Orlando is that Express Unlimited Passes are included for each night of your stay (including your check-in and check-out dates). The Universal hotels that offer free Express Unlimited Passes are Loews Royal Pacific Resort, Loews Portofino Bay, and Hard Rock Hotel®. 

 When Should You Use Express Passes? 

Express Passes allow you to save a ton of time waiting in line for attractions at Universal Orlando. If you have coaster lovers in your family and want to experience as many thrill rides as possible in a single day, Express Passes are the way to go. Express Passes are extremely useful if you visit Universal during peak times (like around the holidays or spring break) when attraction wait times can easily be 60 minutes or longer. Express Passes are also beneficial if you’re visiting for a short time and want to get the most out of your day. 

Book Your Universal Vacation with Wishing On A Star Travel®

Universal Express Passes are beneficial for many people visiting Universal Orlando, especially if you plan to visit during a busy time of year or are traveling with family members who don’t do well standing in long lines. Not sure if you should add Express Passes to your trip? Let our Wishing On A Star Travel advisors guide you in making the right decision. As a U-Preferred Agency with Universal Orlando, we stay up to date on all the latest Universal offerings and will help you plan a thrilling vacation. Call us at  1-888-678-TRIP or request a free quote to get started. For more vacation planning tips, subscribe to our email newsletter