Christmas break at Universal - Do I need Express Passes

Last min plans to visit Universal Orlando during Christmas and planning to buy park to park 2 Park ( 4 day). Do I absolutely need Express passes for my trip?

If there was ever a time to splurge on Express Pass I would think Christmastime would be it


Make some touring plans to get a feel for predicted wait times. Everyone’s threshold is different. With having 4 days, going without may be doable.

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Short answer = yes!

I’ve gone multiple times this year and the crowds are growing each time. I’ve been going in the more “slow” times and it’s busy!

If you can afford it, even for a single day, you’ll get the value out of it.

Typically, I’d say four days is manageable if you’ve been before and don’t have to “see it all”. If you haven’t been in a while and can so the splurge I’d consider it.

What days are you going? How many people in your party? Are you planning to stay onsite?

How many days of express pass were you thinking of buying?


Yeah… I almost asked about all of this too. I’m just assuming Christmas = after school is out = busy!

However, don’t wait too long. The price will go up as the date gets closer. I paid an extra $40 / person for Express Pass in August because I waited two days to decide.


Depending on the days going, and the number of people who needed express passes, a single night at a deluxe hotel may come out cheaper than buying passes.

Looking at undercover tourists website, Express Passes are about 280-340 per day. This is the range I’ve seen for single park one time to both parks unlimited. Hard Rock has a room on 12/25 for 735 with taxes. If @aahsan was looking to buy more than one Express Pass, a hotel room could make sense.


Wow. $100 for the park ticket and $300 for Express.

Times that $400 by the number of your party. Per day…

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Party of 4, I have yet to do the math on onsite vs offsite since it is last min the tickets are expensive

Yes , my dates are 22 to 26 Dec. Peak holidays

Well, right now, Royal Pacific has a 2 queen room for 413 a night for your dates.

That gives you EPs for each day of your stay.


No, you never “need” express. Rope drop, use a touring plan, take a break mid-day, and stay till close. If you do want to get express look at staying a night or two at a Universal hotel that includes express in the price, it might save you a lot of money.


If you stay offsite, you can’t rope drop. Early Park Admission is a benefit of even the value resorts like Endless Summer.


@bebe80 @OrlandoGirl357 @darkmite2 @OBNurseNH @josephmatt
Thank you for your help.
We have decided to stay onsite at Loews Royal Pacific Resort to avail express passes. Wondering if 2 park 2 day park to park will be enough with Unlimited express pass for the days of my visit i.e 23rd and 24th December?


This is probably a question best left to the experts (which is anyone but me LOL) but from what my family has experienced in a single day - albeit not at Christmas - I would say that two days with express and park-to-park should do you fine


You’ll be good with 2 full park days and UEP at Christmas time.

But since express queue waits are much longer than G+ LL waits in comparison, it’s still smart to either make optimized touring plans or at least figure out what’s the best time of day to visit the most popular attractions.

If you’re able to save time to see an extra show, repeat an attraction, or even take a mid day break, the extra planning is worth it.


I agree, or at least still rope drop and make use of early park admission. Focus on the rides without Express FIRST (Veloci and Hagrid). Good luck!


Thanks Folks!

About to book my travel right now. Your help has made it easy for me to make a decision.
One last question, since I am travelling from New England and you never know about snow strom, what happens if you buy dated tickets and cannot make it ? What is Universals refund policy. This will help in deciding if I need travel insurance for my tickets or not


Once I bought some for me and hubby and then DD and her friend decided to come a month later. Literally twice the cost. Buy early for sure (or stay premium one night is probably the cheapest especially if you a full family. Even if you don’t use the room. Two days of unlimited for four or five people, it’s usually half the price or something insane and comes with a room.)