With so many ticket types at Universal Studios, it is easy to get confused and find the experience overwhelming. There are a number of deals on both base tickets and park to park tickets, so you might be left wondering which is better and if a park to park ticket is worth it for you?
The Universal Studios Orlando park to park ticket is worth it if you are looking to ride the Hogwarts Express or do both parks in one day. The park-to-park ticket is not worth it if you don’t want to ride the Hogwarts Express or if you plan to spend 2-3 days exploring the parks.
In this article we are going to go through some of the questions you might have about base tickets and the park to park ticket, along with some of the factors you might want to consider when choosing between a base ticket and a park to park ticket.
Table of Contents
- What Is A Park To Park Ticket At Universal Orlando
- What Is The Difference Between Park To Park And Base Ticket At Universal?
- Can You Ride The Hogwarts Express Without A Park To Park Ticket?
- How Much Are Universal Park To Park Tickets?
- How To Upgrade Universal Ticket To Park To Park
- Is A Universal Studios Orlando Park To Park Ticket Worth It?
What Is A Park To Park Ticket At Universal Orlando
Firstly to understand if a Universal Studios park to park ticket is worth it, you might want to know what it is and what it does.
A park to park ticket is a ticket that allows you to travel from one park to the other in one day. For example, if you are in Islands Of Adventure you can travel over to Universal Studios on that same day and back again.
This gives you the freedom to move between the two parks during your trip. This is most popular for those looking to achieve seeing both parks in one day or looking to ride the Hogwarts Express.
This is great if you want to explore specific sections with each park, eat somewhere specific in the other park or just to enjoy riding the Hogwarts Express back and forth.
What Is The Difference Between Park To Park And Base Ticket At Universal?
To understand the different between the two tickets I thought it would be easier to understand which each ticket entails.
A base ticket is a ticket which allows you access to one park and one park only for that day. This means once you are in your chosen park wither Islands of Adventure, Volcano Bay or Universal Studios you are to stay in that park until you are ready to leave.
If you only had a base ticket for Universal Studios but wished to visit Islands of Adventure you would be required to buy a separate ticket to access this park also. There may be restrictions in place and may only allow access for the following day.
A park to park ticket is open access and gives you the ability to move between the parks of Islands of Adventure and Universal Studios. Given the freedom, you can start your day in one park and move to the other at any point in the day and back again.
The difference between the base ticket and the park to park ticket is the ability to move between parks during the day. The base ticket is admission to one park and one park only for that chosen day, the park to park ticket is admission to both parks and the ability to move between them.
The price will vary, depending on the time of year and if you are purchasing in advance or on the gate. You may also find better deals on the park to park tickets in advance or as part of a booking and package with Universal Studios hotels.
If you are looking to spend one day at Universal Studios and want to see both parks, you would want to purchase the park to park ticket. This will also allow you to ride the Hogwarts Express.
Can You Ride The Hogwarts Express Without A Park To Park Ticket?
Unfortunately, you cannot ride the Hogwarts Express without a park to park ticket. As you arrive at “Kings Cross” your ticket will be scanned and the conductor will advise you that your ticket is not permitted to ride the Hogwarts Express.
The reason behind this is due to the parks being linked through the train ride, once you arrive at the other park you are directly in the park. There is no other ticket entry and so you are required to have a park to park ticket to ride the Hogwarts Express.
How Much Are Universal Park To Park Tickets?
The Universal Studios Orlando park to park tickets are a slightly higher in cost compared to the base tickets, this can depend on time of year and also if any special promotions are on at the time.
At the time of writing, you can purchase a 2-day park to park ticket from Universal Studios Orlando directly for $139.50 per day for adults., children are slightly cheaper.
You can often find offers on third party websites or with Universal Studios Orlando themselves so it is a good idea to shop around and keep checking back on the prices before buying.
Another tip is to buy the base ticket at the cheaper rate and then upgrade later on if you wish to have a park to park ticket. There are a number of ways in which you can save money on your tickets or even in the parks.
How To Upgrade Universal Ticket To Park To Park
If you are looking to upgrade your ticket from a base ticket of one-park-one-day to a park to park you can do this for a small(ish) fee.
This will depend on the number of days you have purchased for your visit (one day, two days or three days). There is an additional cost included in upgrading from a base ticket to a park to park ticket. This can range from $55 to $70, on top of your original ticket price.
Depending on where you purchase your tickets from will depend on how you upgrade. If you have purchased your tickets from Universal Studios Orlando directly you can either contact them through email or phone call to upgrade your tickets in advance.
Alternatively, you can head to guest services to upgrade your ticket while you are there in person. If you wish to do this option, you are required to upgrade your ticket while it is still valid. For example if you are using a 2 day ticket you must upgrade before the end of the 2nd day.
You can also upgrade your ticket if you are wanting to add an additional day and include to park to park option. This is handy if you haven’t seen everything you want an underestimated how many days you need at Universal Studios.
Is A Universal Studios Orlando Park To Park Ticket Worth It?
To truly see whether a Universal Studios Orlando park to park ticket is worth it, I wanted to run through some of the factors that you should take into account. There are a number of reasons why you may want to upgrade your ticket and so I wanted to go through the different reason I feel would say you to decide if the Universal Studios Orlando park to park ticket is worth it.
I wanted to break down each factor and help you see whether the park to park ticket is worth it for you and your trip.
With base tickets starting at $234.99 for 2 days – one park per day and a 2-day park to park ticket starting at $279 per person that is an added expense of $44.01 per person.
That $44.01 could be used on food, parking, hotel costs or souvenirs. Though on the other hand it can enhance your experience and cut down the number of days you need at the parks.
I wanted to touch on the duration of your visit to Universal Studios Orlando as many tie in a trip to Universal Studios with a trip to Walt Disney World. We have done both major parks in one trip to Orlando before and so we opted to use a park to park ticket so we could explore both parks in one day.
If you are limiting yourself to one day only then a park to park is a great way of seeing the best of both parks in one day. You can even team this with an Express Pass to ensure you get on all the rides and still see everything else you want to see.
While you can still go on all the rides at some point during your trip on a base ticket there is one ride in which you cannot go on unless you have a park to park ticket and that is the Hogwarts Express.
If you or anyone in your party are Harry Potter fans and are wanting to go on the Hogwarts Express, upgrading to a park to park ticket may be beneficial to you.
Though it seems a lot for just a ride, I can honestly say we all loved it, even Cora’s dad who has never watched Harry Potter in his life.
If you and your family are very much into Harry Potter and the Wizarding World of Harry Potter is a big draw for you to visit Universal Studios Orlando I would definitely advise looking at buying a park to park ticket for the freedom to use the Hogwarts Express between parks.
The Universal Studios park to park tickets are worth the added cost if you are a fan of Harry Potter and want to have the full experience of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter. That includes the rides, Hogsmeade, Diagon Alley and going on the Hogwarts Express.
The other reason I would suggest getting a park to park ticket is if you are only able to visit Universal Studios for one day. This can allow you to jump from one park to the other and experience both parks in one day.
Alternatively, if you are working on a budget and looking at have 2-3 days at Universal Studios it works out cheaper to have a base ticket. If you wish to have a park to park ticket during your stay you can always upgrade.
I would also advise against having a park to park ticket if you are able to spend 2 or 3 days at Universal Studios and have the time to use a day to each park including Volcano Bay.
Personally, we will always choose to get a park to park ticket as we really enjoy the Wizarding World of Harry Potter and love riding the Hogwarts Express. We also enjoy the freedom to move between parks for a choice of where to eat and to get to rides with short wait times.