What To Take To Universal’s Volcano Bay

We’ve had the pleasure of visiting Volcano Bay more than ten times since it opened back in 2017. During that time we learnt a lot about what (and what not) to bring to this incredible waterpark with us.

We’ve travelled to Volcano Bay as a couple, with elderly parents and now with a child.

As such we know what you bring will vary depending on your situation and we’ve gone ahead and tried to think of everything to accommodate for that and help you have an awesome day.


Volcano Bay does not provide towels for free. Instead, you can either bring your own or rent one once you arrive at the theme park at a cost of $4.99.

If you’re only needing one or two towels during your visit then renting is an affordable way to make a visit to the park significantly more convenient and stress-free.


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That being said, if you’re travelling as a larger family then the cost of renting towels could add up very quickly.

If you forget to bring a towel to Universal Studios Volcano Bay but don’t want to rent one you can also buy towels from the on-site store for $30 plus tax.

Swimming Costume

Depending on how far you’re travelling to get to Volcano Bay and how comfortable your swimming outfit is you may either want to wear it under your clothes or go ahead and pack it to change into once you arrive at the park.

There are a vast number of changing rooms across Volcano Bay which also include showers and lockers for your convenience.

If you happen to forget your swimming costume on your trip to Volcano Bay then there’s no need to divert or turn back since the stores inside the water park sell a range of styles and sizes to suit everyone.

Water Shoes

Water shoes are permitted within select areas of Volcano Bay but are restricted on select rides for health and safety reasons.

As such if you’re someone who likes to wear water shoes while at a waterpark they are something you may still want to bring with you on your visit to Volcano Bay.


Florida is known as the sunshine state for good reason, and being that water reflects the sunlight and you’re unlikely to feel the effects of the sun while in the water it’s essential you protect your skin as much as possible.

One of the best ways to do this is with a sunhat. If you don’t have a sunhat with you on your visit to Volcano Bay you can purchase one from the stores on-site at the water park for around $20 plus tax.

Change Of Clothing

While you’ll obviously be wearing a set of clothing when you arrive at Volcano Bay it’s often a good idea to pack a change in case the set you’re wearing gets wet during your visit.

This is especially a good idea for children or if you’re not staying on-site at a Universal Studios property and as such have to drive back to a hotel, resort or villa after your day at the waterpark.


Volcano Bay requires all non-swimmers to wear a lifejacket in pools, and on eligible rides within the waterpark.

While Volcano Bay provides lifejackets for both adults and children for free as part of your entry into the park you may want to bring your own from home.

In our case, we didn’t have a lifejacket for Oliver and instead had to put him in the smallest size they had available which was still too big for him at the time.

As such in certain circumstances you may want to consider bringing your own lifejacket for yourself or a child to know that it’s a comfortable fit for them.

Lifejackets are located at various points across Volcano Bay and rides will specify whether the vests should be worn by everyone or just those under a certain height, weight or ability.

Each ride has a staff member upon entry in which you can clarify whether or not you will need a life vest in order to ride.

Swim Nappies

If you’re travelling with little ones then you’re also going to want to add swim nappies to your Universal Orlando packing list.

You can go ahead and bring swim nappies from home on vacation with you, pick them up from the likes of Walmart, Walgreens or Target on your arrival in Orlando or purchase them from Volcano Bay upon your arrival.

Food, Drinks & Snacks

You are allowed to bring food, drinks and snacks with you to Volcano Bay.

While this is a great way to save money, there are some restrictions as to what you can bring into the park. This includes; no hot food, no glass jars or containers (baby food and medication are exempt) and no alcohol.

You can bring a cooler box into Volcano Bay provided that they are soft-sided and without wheels. Cooler boxes can be a fantastic way of keeping any food, drinks and snacks you bring with you to the water park safe from the Florida heat.

There is also a number of Coca-Cola freestyle machines inside Volcano Bay. As such if you have a Universal Orlando refillable cup you can go ahead and get that re-activated to use for an extensive range of soft drinks throughout the day.

Park Tickets

To enter Universal’s Volcano Bay you are going to need your park tickets. If you’ve purchased your park tickets to Volcano Bay in advance be sure to bring those with you to gain entry into the park.


Sunscreen is an essential item that you’ll want to pack for your trip to Volcano Bay. In this case, it’s recommended to pack one that not only has a high UV tolerance but that is also water resistant.

Not only does the sun reflect rays from the water making the UV significantly more intense but you often don’t feel yourself burning since you’re in the water as such it’s important to reapply regularly throughout your day at Volcano Bay.

If you’ve forgotten your sunscreen or have run out during your visit then you can pick up a range of different options from the stores on-site at Volcano Bay.


Sunglasses not only help protect your eyes from UV light but are also fantastic for being able to see clearly without squinting.

While sunglasses are not permitted on any of the rides inside Volcano Bay you can use them in the pools.

Money & Bank Cards

In order to purchase items (food, drinks, snacks, souvenirs) inside Volcano Bay you’re going to need access to some cash or a bank card.

If you’re wanting to spend money at Universal Orlando without worrying about carrying your bank card or cash around with you at the park consider linking your bank card with the TapuTapu wearable that you get upon entering the park.

You’ll still need your bank card with you initially to go ahead and set this up.

However, once it is set up you’re able to store your bank card safely in a locker throughout the day and still spend money around the park as and when you wish to do so.

Photographic ID

If you want to purchase any alcoholic beverages during your visit to Volcano Bay then you’re going to want to pack your photographic ID.

Much like your money and bank cards, this ID can be safely stored in a locker for an additional cost while you go on any of the rides or swimming in any of the pools.

Waterproof Phone Case

If you’re looking to use your phone to take photos and capture incredible memories during your day at Volcano Bay then you’ll want to go ahead and protect it with a waterproof phone case.

Waterproof phone cases can be purchased online, from the likes of Target, Walgreens and Walmart while in Orlando or from one of the stores inside Volcano Bay.

If you don’t wish to use your phone during your visit, then you can store it along with any other personal belongings in one of the Volcano Bay lockers for a fee.

Volcano Bay Restricted Items

While the above covers the items you’ll want to consider bringing with you to Volcano Bay there are some items that are sadly not permitted within the park. This includes;

  • Glassware / glass containers (medical supplies are exempt)
  • Alcohol
  • Hardsided cooler bags
  • Cooler bags on wheels
  • Any kind of seating
  • Food that requires heating or refrigeration
  • Balls or ball games
  • Inflatables, pool noodles or tubes
  • Water guns
  • Beach umbrellas
  • Portable speakers

🎟️ Where To Buy Tickets for Universal Orlando?

If you’re based in the US or Canada, I recommend Klook for your Universal Orlando tickets. Klook consistently has the most competitive prices. There’s also a range of different ticket options to suit all budgets and requirements.

Meanwhile, if you’re based in the United Kingdom. Then I recommend buying your Universal Orlando theme park tickets from AttractionTix. I personally use AttractionTix when purchasing Orlando theme park tickets. That’s because AttractionTix consistently has the most competitive prices and incredible customer service.

🏥 Should I Buy Travel Insurance for a Visit to Universal Orlando?

If you’re travelling to Universal Orlando for vacation, then travel insurance is recommended. Basic travel insurance coverage with Safety Wing averages between $5 – $10 per day and offers peace of mind.

However, if a trip to Universal Orlando isn’t part of a vacation. For example, you live locally. Then travel insurance isn’t likely to be necessary.

🚘 Do I Need to Rent a Car for a Visit to Universal Orlando?

You don’t need to rent a car to visit Universal Orlando, as the resort has Uber / Lyft pick-up and drop-off points. However, if Universal Orlando makes up the majority of your vacation, then you may want to stay on-site.

Staying onsite at the Universal Orlando Resort comes with several perks. Including complimentary transport from the hotel to the Universal Orlando theme parks. In some cases, you can even walk from your hotel straight to the theme park gates.

However, if a trip to Universal Orlando only makes up a portion of your vacation, then you may want to rent a car. I personally use Discover Cars to find the best car rental for all of my trips to Orlando.

🏨 Where to Stay When Visiting Universal Orlando?

If you’re spending the majority of your vacation at Universal Orlando, it’s a good idea to stay at a Universal Orlando hotel. Staying onsite at Universal Orlando comes with several perks, including;

While staying onsite at Universal Orlando is great value for money, it can still be out of budget for many. Thankfully, there are several budget-friendly hotels close to Universal Orlando to choose from.

Meanwhile, if Universal Orlando only makes up part of your Orlando vacation, then you may want to stay elsewhere. Kissimmee, International Drive and Lake Buena Vista are all within a 40-minute drive of Universal Orlando.

When it comes to booking hotels in Orlando, I use either Booking.com or Hotels.com. However, for large families and groups, VRBO is my number one choice.


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Thanks for stopping by! Do you have experience with this trip or want to share some of your own tips? We’d love to hear about it! Comment below and let’s chat!

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  1. wayne lee says:

    Great Blog, Really appreciate all the info. Thank You so much.

  2. Thanks you so much! We are heading there today and this answered so many questions I had.

  3. Thanks for the info, just what I was looking for.