The Incredible Hulk Coaster and Rip Ride Rocket don’t allow any loose items at all — no fanny packs, FlipBelts — nada. There’s a metal detector to make sure you comply, so be sure to put your items into a free locker before you get in line. If you try to sneak even your mobile phone along, you’ll be sent to a locker and the end of the line. Trust me. These lockers are free as long as you’re in on the ride (or in line). After that it’s $3.00 per 30 minutes up to $20.00. They judge time based on wait times for rides and how long it takes to ride.
Get this huge donut inside Simpson’s Land, and plan to share it. Not only is it big enough for a couple of people, it’ll be cheaper than buying individual desserts for your kids.
Just head to a quick-service counter for a cup of water. Also, if you bring in your own water bottle, it’s free to fill it with water at the Coca-Cola Freestyle machines.
For real — if you don’t want to get drenched on the Jurassic Park River Adventure, you’ll need a poncho. Also if you’re visiting the park in winter months, it can be rainy. The payoff of going to the park in the off-season is low crowds (yay!). Get your ponchos for dirt cheap on Amazon, and pack them in your suitcase.
There’s a lot of debate about when the best time to visit the park is — especially the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. Some swear by morning being the best time (and it is if you have early entrance, because you’re staying on-property!). But others believe evenings when children are worn out is a better time. One thing is for certain — the best time is not in the middle of the day, so to be sure you’re maximizing your time and can be there early and stay late, head to your hotel for a whole-family nap. You’ll thank me for this tip!
Anyone can take advantage of Package Pickup — when you buy a souvenir, it’ll be ready for you at the park entrance within three hours of your purchase. If you’re staying at a Universal Hotel on site, you can opt for your items to be delivered directly to your hotel and pick them up from the concierge.
These are straight-up way too expensive inside the park. So, jump on Amazon before your trip, and get a $16.00 Gryffindor robe, or get Harry Potter themed T-shirts for the family for $10-15.
These are two features that will help you get on the rides faster if you don’t want to shell out the cash for an Express Pass. Single Rider is just that — a special line for people who don’t mind riding next to strangers. You’ll be separated from your party if you go this route, so this one is best with teenagers. Child Swap is a holding area where one parent can wait with kids while the other parent rides. When the first parent gets off the ride, the second parent can get right on while the other continues to wait with the kids.