What To Pack For A Universal Studios Vacation

Packing for any vacation can be hard but when you are factoring in rides, weather conditions and even trying to pick out the most comfortable clothing it can get a little tricky. This can often be the case when packing for a vacation to Universal Studios, but it doesn’t have to be.

Obviously depending on whether you decide to go for one day or 7 days will depend on what you need to pack but many of the essentials are the same from comfortable shoes to suncream.

In this article, we are going to talk through some of the clothes we recommend packing, the best shoes and even some tips and tricks to making your vacation to Universal Studios better and stress-free.

Clothing

Depending on what time of year you are looking to visit your suitcase may vary. The biggest change will be from summer to winter, though for most Universal Studios locations this shouldn’t be a problem.

Universal Studios Orlando and Universal Studios Hollywood are both in locations where the weather is generally quite warm all year round with the addition to a rainy season (generally from the end of summer until October). With the generally warm weather in mind packing for a vacation to Universal Studios can be fairly easy.

No matter what time of year we visit we always like to pack for ‘just in case’ or pack layers to make sure we have everything we need. We also don’t take many ‘fancy’ clothes that are for evenings out as Universal Studios and CityWalk are very casual and don’t require a strict dress code.

Deciding what to wear to Universal Studios might feel quite a task but it is really simple as you can pretty much wear what you feel most comfortable in and comfort is key when you are spending a long time on your feet and climbing on and off rides.

We always suggest wearing shorts or trousers within the park as these are the most comfortable (for most people) and they are a little more practical especially when getting on and off rides. These can be anything from jersey shorts to denim or cotton depending on your preference for fabrics.

Of course, when you are packing there are some key things you might want to think about;

  • how many days are you visiting Universal Studios?
  • Is there laundry facilities at your accommodation
  • do you plan to dress up for evenings out?
  • what time of year are you visiting
  • how much luggage do you want to take
  • Are you taking children?

The above questions are great to ask yourself when packing for Universal Studios as you can really determine whether or not you need that extra pair of shorts or if you are missing anything from extra vests or socks etc.

Children can be a little harder to pack for as you want to pack extra clothes for accidents from spilt food or drinks. We also recommend packing extra clothes for younger children in your day bag for Universal Studios so you don’t have to go and buy a new t-shirt in one of the shops which can be expensive.

Packing For Winter

Winter can be a little harder to pack for as you want to wear layers and keep warm though Universal Studios Hollywood and Universal Studios Orlando shouldn’t vary too much in terms of what to pack. We generally like to pack longer layers, especially for evenings as they can often be much cooler than the days.

You may also find that the overall temperature through the daytime is lower than in summer and so you may find a light jacket or long sleeve t-shirt more suitable.

Here are some key items we feel you might need during a trip to Universal Studios;

  • Comfortable shorts – denim, cargo or jersey
  • T-shirts & Long Sleeve Tops
  • Swimming Gear
  • Longer trousers/ leggings
  • Light jacket or hoodie
  • Smart Shirt or Blouse
  • Poncho or light rain jacket

Packing For Summer

Summer can be easier to pack for as you might find you don’t need as many layers, clothes can be much simpler and it can often resemble a wardrobe in which you might already have for other vacations.

We personally like to pack a little more for summer as we often feel like we go through more clothes, especially if we don’t have access to a laundry room and so like to make sure we have plenty of backup t-shirts and shorts.

Here is a breakdown of key items you might need during your vacation to Universal Studios;

  • Comfortable shorts – denim, cargo or jersey
  • T-shirts & Vest Tops
  • Swimming Gear
  • Longer trousers/ leggings
  • Light jacket or hoodie
  • Smart Shirt or Blouse
  • Dress or playsuit
  • Poncho or light rain jacket

Shoes

I feel shoes can always be a make or break when going on vacation, there is nothing worse than walking around for the day and struggling from blisters or sore feet. Shoes are important to get right especially when you are spending long days at the parks and doing a lot of walking.

Pro Tip: Try taking shoes that you have worn a lot or broken in before going away. This will limit the amount of damage to your feet while out exploring.

The great thing about packing for Universal Studios is that you can pretty much dress however you feel comfortable. It is common for many families to look very casual, wear trainers and sandals and dress for comfort, not fashion so you will never feel underdressed.

The most popular type of footwear seen in the parks are trainers and sports shoes, these are usually because they are the most comfortable, they are built for long days and plenty of exercise and movement. We always opt for trainers as they also give us the most support when spending long days at the parks.

Meanwhile, you might find comfort in sandals and flip flops, especially in the hotter weather as these can be cooler on your feet. Sandals and flip flops are a great alternative to trainers as they can be cooler and sometimes easier to wear. Though not all sandals and flip flops will be comfortable, especially when walking around the parks all day.

We found if we were to wear sandals or flip flops we liked those that are more stable, with more support around the foot and ankle. Some great examples are Birkenstocks and Merrell, these both provide support and comfort to the foot especially on long days.

Our last alternative for footwear are boots, while both Universal Studios Orlando and Universal Studios Hollywood are generally warm weather all year round you might have to think about visiting one of the other parks such as Japan, Singapore and Bejing.

Accessories

When talking about accessories I do mean practical items from backpacks and bags to sun hats and even ponchos for water rides.

The most important accessory, or at least in our eyes is a good bag or backpack. A decent backpack or bag that you feel comfortable in is essential for making your trip to the parks easy and stress-free. We always opt for a backpack as we enjoy having the bag on our back while having our arms free for shopping and using our interactive wands or drinking a butterbeer or two!

Whether you prefer backpacks, waist bags or over the shoulder bags it is completely up to you. We suggest if you are a solo person or heading as part of a group to make sure you have somewhere to store your phone, tickets and money as you can make sure you always have the essentials with you.

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If you are travelling to Universal Studios as a family you might find it easier to have one larger bag for all the essentials such as extra clothes for smaller children, snacks and suncream.

Essentially work out the items you wish to take with you during your days at the parks and then work out what bag you have or want that would fit those items in. Deciding what to take to Universal Studios for the day is really simple and easy once you know what you need and what you want to take.

Other examples for accessories are items such as sunhats as they are important for those who are spending a long time in the sun. Another handy accessory to have on hand is a poncho, perfect for having ready for water rides and keeping your clothes dry.

You can buy ponchos within the park but we suggest buying them before you head to Universal Studios to save money. You can buy these from places such as DollarTree and Walmart.

Groceries

One of the things that you might not think of packing is groceries, this is mainly for those who are driving or even those who are travelling with children or anyone with allergies. Packing groceries may also depend on the type of accommodation you are staying in, how many people you are packing for and your mode of transport.

If you are looking at staying at Universal Studios for anything from 3-5 days I would look at picking up some snacks, drinks and additional items to help cut down your costs while in the parks.

As you can take food into the parks (as long as it doesn’t need heating or is in a glass container) you can bring in plenty of fun snacks you have bought in advance to help save money.

Here are some groceries we suggest picking up for your trip to Universal Studios;

  • Sweet snacks for the park
  • Drinks or bottled water for the hotel room
  • Savoury snacks
  • Breakfast rolls such as pastries

Toiletries

Toiletries are essential when looking at what to pack for a trip to Universal Studios. Though you can pick up toiletries wherever you are it can be much easier to take them with you, depending on where you are coming from, how far you are travelling and how long you are staying.

Here are some of the essential toiletries that we like to pack for a Universal Studios vacation;

  • Shampoo/Conditioner
  • Shower Gel
  • Suncream – We use the Banana Boat Spray on which gives us great coverage and works well with water-based activities.
  • Aftersun
  • Toothpaste – this is an item I seem to always forget when going away.
  • Toothbrush

Another thing we often like to keep on hand when we travel anywhere is a first aid kit. Having a small comprehensive first aid kit has come in handy a lot for us over the years and can really be beneficial for any bumps and scrapes. Universal Studios do have first aid areas within the park where you can get help if an injury does occur but it is always handy to have one to hand.

We bought a small pack and top it up each time we use something from it. You can buy ready-made first aid kits in pharmacies or even online that hold several useful items or you can buy some of the items yourself and keep them in a zipped bag.

Here are some of the things we like to keep in our first aid kit;

  • Plasters
  • Blister Plasters
  • Paracetamol/ Ibuprofen
  • Antiseptic Wipes
  • Anti-diarrhea
  • Anti Sickness Tablets
  • Tube Bandage
  • Germolene
  • Calpol

Electronics

While many people head on vacation to take time off, wind down and enjoy quality time with their families, a vacation to Universal Studios is different as for many it is a once in a lifetime trip. With vacations that are generally a once in a lifetime trip, you might want to capture some of the amazing memories.

When going on vacation you might want to think about what electronics you want to take with you. We often travel with our laptops for work but we also like to take things such as GoPro’s, cameras and the relevant chargers.

Here are the items you might want to take to Universal Studios;

  • Phone
  • Phone Charger
  • Camera
  • Batteries
  • Camera Charger
  • Ipad
  • Ipad Charger
  • Hairdryer/curlers/straighteners
  • Headphones
  • GoPro/Underwater Camera

Baby Supplies

Unfortunately, Universal Studios doesn’t have a convenience store within the park for things such as wipes or nappies so this is one of those areas where you want to be extra prepared. You can find some small amenities in the shops at on-site hotels but you would struggle when in the park(s) themselves.

The prices within the on-site hotel stores may also be inflated compared to buying at a supermarket. There are of course other items you will need to remember to pack from a pushchair, baby bottles and even swimming nappies.

Pro Tip: Work out an average of how much you use things like wipes and nappies daily and take that times the number of days you are there.

Depending on how many days you plan to visit will depend on how much you need to take. Make sure to check that your hotel or accommodation can supply things like a travel cot or cot for young children and/or high chair.

Here are some of the items we suggest packing when travelling with babies and toddlers;

  • Nappies
  • Dummies
  • Bottles
  • Baby Wipes
  • Food
  • Toys
  • Playmat
  • Baby Monitor
  • Pushchair
  • Pushchair cover
  • Bottle Steriliser
  • Armbands
  • Swimming Nappies

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