Are you trying to figure out the best time to visit Universal Studios in 2021 and 2022? Well The Park Prodigy team is here to help! While there really is no bad time to visit Universal Orlando, there are many different factors to consider when planning the perfect family vacation.
Does your group want to know the least crowded time at Universal Orlando? Or are you traveling on a budget and interested in the cheapest time of year to visit Universal? What about special events such as Halloween Horror nights? We’re about to breakdown that plus so much more. We hope you find this post helpful, and if you are planning a trip to Universal Orlando be sure to check out our other FREE vacation planning tools. Our goal at The Park Prodigy has always been to help you save time on your next vacation and find the cheapest Universal Orlando tickets!
We’ll we cover them all and hope this article helps you pick the best time to go to Universal Studios based off of your goals! So grab a butter beer and let’s get started!
SPECIAL NOTE: If you’re looking for our 2021 Universal Orlando Crowd Calendar be sure to go straight to the link below.
It used to be Universal Orlando was a one day stop in between your time at Walt Disney World but boy has that changed! With the additions of Islands of Adventure, Universal’s Volcano Bay , and the the Wizarding World of Harry Potter Universal is an adventure all in itself.
Planning the best time to go to Universal Orlando can not only save you a ton of time in the theme park but it can also save you money! How you might ask? Well just like Walt Disney World, Universal vacation packages and theme park tickets fluctuate based on the time of year. This would allow your family to save big if you decide to travel during a less crowded time of year.
It could make the difference between staying off-property and on-property at one of the amazing Universal Orlando resorts. All on-property guests can take full advantage of special Universal Orlando benefits including early park admission, free transportation, and free express passes at participating resorts!
Every day is a good day when it comes to experiencing the adventure and magic of Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure! However, the absolute best time to visit Universal Studios in terms of low crowds will be:
Least Crowded Months At A Glance:
When school is back in session for most of the country in September, you’ll find Universal to be a lot more quiet than the earlier summer months. During April and May, you’ll experience significantly lower crowds with the exception of Easter and spring break. Known as the “shoulder season” this time is especially quiet as most families are prepping for summer vacations.
As for January and February, we also find these months to be among the least crowded time to visit Universal Studios. The main reason being this is right after the Holiday rush. If you’re still unsure which month works best for your group, check out our Universal Crowd Calendar.
If you’re looking for the exact best days to go to Universal Studios here is what we suggest:
If you’re planning a visit to Universal Orlando in 2021 or 2022, it’s important to keep the park’s new COVID-19 safety measures in mind. These measures include requiring all guests to wear facial coverings at all times except when eating or drinking, which should be done stationary (not walking around). They also mean the parks are operating at a limited capacity. This can impact when/if you can enter the park or purchase tickets for a specific day, so be sure to check the Universal Studios app to see capacity updates.
All rides are currently operating under social distanced guidelines. This includes markers 6 feet apart throughout lines and rides may still be only boarding one party at a time, depending on when you go. This WILL impact your wait times, so be sure to wear comfy shoes! It’s also a good idea to visit one park per day rather than try and do the one-day two-park pass. That way, you’re not stressing about how much time you’ll get to spend in the other park by the time you’re done in the first.
Our advice: Purchase your tickets in advance, and get there as early as possible – another reason to take advantage of the early park entrance that comes with each Universal Orlando ticket you purchase with The Park Prodigy!
Are you planning a trip to Universal Orlando? Save up to three hours in the parks and up to 30% on select hotel rooms with The Park Prodigy!
Request a no-obligation quote online or by calling our office at 407-630-8650 !
When is the best time to visit Universal Orlando based on budget? The cheapest time to go to Universal Studios is often very similar to the least crowded times we just discussed. These are August – September and late January – February. The only downside is if you’re travelling with kids, you might have to take them out of school for a more affordable vacation, but hey, we’re not judging!
It’s important to note that Universal has always been very popular in late September and October due to Halloween Horror Nights. (which we cover later) To make up for this we recommend visiting in early September right after Labor Day. This is also still a great time to visit Universal’s Volcano Bay.
One of the benefits of paying attention to some of the best times to visit Universal Orlando is you will often find the best hotel deals! This could be a huge deal when you consider that some of the deluxe Universal Orlando hotels come with free Universal Express passes.
This could be a huge time and money saver when you consider that express passes can cost well over $100 per day per guests. Below is a list of Universal Deluxe resorts you might be able to upgrade to when deciding the perfect time to visit Universal:
If you’re traveling with kids, there’s a number of factors that will play into the best time to go to Universal Studios Orlando. Most importantly, you definitely want to consider the weather. This is especially true for Universal Orlando as Volcano Bay is one of the three main theme parks. Although vacationers can take advantage of the heated water anytime of the year, this park can be a ton of fun in sun!
The truth is some families might not want to plan their trip during the summer when Florida temperatures climb into the 90’s. (Not to mention persistent humidity!)
Let’s face it, tackling full days Universal in the summer with children can be an extremely unpleasant experience. However, just before temperatures start to soar, you can plan a vacation on a budget during the “shoulder season”. We consider this to be the weeks between the end of April and begging of May, and also the middle of October to December. The weather is comfortable and the parks are very manageable in terms of crowds when you’re not there during spring break or popular holidays.
As discussed Orlando weather can be unpredictable. Not only that, but Orlando has been known to occasionally have hurricanes and tornadoes during the months of August and September. As far as humidity goes, you can count on soaring temperatures from the beginning of May to the end of September at Universal Orlando. If you’re visiting the theme parks during any of these months, be sure to check the predicted weather in our Universal Orlando Crowd Calendar to decide whether or not you’ll be able to take the heat.
We also outline which Universal Orlando Resorts we feel are best for midday breaks based on location, transportation, and budget!
As we mentioned earlier, there’s never a bad time to visit Universal Orlando. This is especially true when it comes to busier months—there are plenty of ways to successfully manage the crowds! One of the best ways is take advantage of staying at select Universal Orlando hotels. These advantages include a free Universal express pass with each Universal theme park ticket.
But for those of you who want to avoid the crowds more than anything, Universal Studios busy days are definitely something you should be aware of. These Universal Studios busy times happen during summer months (June-August) and when popular events take place from October through December.
We do understand that sometimes those months happen to be the best time for your family to travel. That said, there are ways to get ahead of the crowds before you even arrive. For example, making dining reservations in advance and getting to the parks when they first open or earlier!
Another helpful tip is to prepare a strategy based on your absolute must do attractions and shows. As discussed you can also upgrade your universal ticket with a Universal Express. This will allow you to skip the lines one time at participating attractions. With Universal Express Unlimited, you can skip the lines on participating attractions as many times as you please. Talk about a whole lotta fun!
Just like Walt Disney World, Universal Orlando is home to some pretty spectacular holiday events. From Halloween Horror Nights to Mardi Gras, and Christmas in Harry Potter World, there are a ton of fun ways to experience the holidays at Universal. For a quick glance at the best days to visit Universal Studios during these special events based on the lowest crowds, take a look below:
Halloween Horror Nights dates have not been released yet be sure to check back with us to stay up to date!
Be sure to check out our complete Guide to Halloween Horror Nights for additional information!
Although the dates for Halloween Horror Nights have not been released yet we do find that the best times to go are always during the week. This is because this event is so popular among Florida locals and many visit on the weekends.
Although the exact dates for Mardi Gras 2021 at Universal have not been released yet. Historically the first three weeks of February have been the best time to visit.
Special Events: Grinchmas, Macy’s Holiday Parade, Christmas in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter
Most Recommended Times to Visit:
Weekdays in November (with the exception of Thanksgiving week)
Weekdays in December (with the exception of Christmas and NYE week)
So is January a good time to go to Universal Studios? There are a ton of advantages of visiting Universal in January which include the cool weather, low park crowds, and discounted Universal Orlando tickets. You and your family might even be able to take advantage of visiting the Islands of Adventure of Universal Studios still decorated for Christmas depending on the week you visit.
The first week of January has always been a popular week to visit for runners to come to the Orlando area. This is typically when Disney hosts the Walt Disney World marathon weekend, which all runners who sign up are welcome. Guests can partake in a 5k, 10K, half marathon, full marathon or even all of them! Then hope over to Universal Citywalk for a celebration meal!
For these reasons it’s no secret that January has some of the best days at Universal Studios Orlando. As outlined above the best weeks are weekend which include January 11th -18th, and then the 25th-31st. If you are only planning on visiting Universal Orlando for a few days, the best individual park days based on crowd levels and theme park ticket prices are January 13th or January 14th. If you’re unable to travel during these weeks just keep reading to find the best time to visit Universal Studios.
Just how busy is Universal Orlando in February? You’ll want to be sure to visit Universal Orlando before Presidents Day weekend if you are trying to avoid the crowds. Luckily there are the same advantages as visiting in January such as amazing weather, lower park crowds, and discounted Universal Orlando tickets if you do. As we discussed the best weeks to go to Universal Orlando are February 1-7, and 7-14th. However the best day to go to Universal Studios in February will be the 9th or the 10th. We also find the first few days to be the best time to visit Harry Potter World.
If you and your family decide to visit in February, be sure to check our Mardi Gras which is one of the most popular Universal Orlando events. We do find that when you look at all of the benefits February is one of the best times for adults to visit Universal Orlando.
So if February didn’t work for you and your family, you’re probably wondering how busy is Universal Studios in March? This isn’t as easy as January and February, as March is typically when we start to school breaks. It’s also when the weather in Florida starts to heat up, but it’s not as humid as the summer months. We find this month to be one of the best times to visit Universal Orlando based on weather. This gives families a ton of flexibility as they can plan a few days by the pool of their favorite hotel. This is also when resorts guests can really start to take advantage of Universal’s Volcano Bay water park.
If you plan on visiting Walt Disney World March also kicks off the beginning of one of our favorite festivals, the EPCOT Flower and Garden Festival.
We do find the best week to visit Universal Orlando in March is the 1st – 7th, and the 3rd and 4th if you are only planning on spending a day.
If the crowds at Universal Orlando start to pick up in March, you might be wondering is April a bad time to go to Universal? Our answer to that would be, of course not! There is never a bad time to go to Orlando for a family vacation! Just plan as much as you can and always use our Universal Orlando crowd calendar to avoid the April crowds at Universal Studios.
Visiting Universal in April is very popular among families for a few reasons. The first it is another month when almost all schools with have a break which allows families to take advantage of a great vacation without taking their kids out of school. The second reason is there is so much to do including spending a ton of time at Universal’s Volcano Bay which is our favorite water park. The temperature at Universal in April is exactly what you would expect, with hot Florida days and enjoyable nights.
If you’re picking a full week to travel we recommend the last week of April 25th – May 1st. But if you are looking for the slowest time to go to Universal Studios for a day try April 29th or 30th.
So as school breaks start to officially wind down towards the end of April, your family might be wondering how busy is Universal in May? Historically May has been a great month to visit Universal Studios as it is typically a slower month compared to April and this is right before summer breaks. The middle of May has two of the best weeks to visit Universal Orlando throughout the entire year. This is because guests will have access to all of the attractions and water parks but enjoy lower crowds than March and April. Guests can also hop over to Walt Disney World to check out the EPCOT Flower and Garden Festival.
The only downside to visiting Universal Orlando in May is the hot Florida temperatures. If you’re picking a full week to travel we recommend the week of May 11th-17th. But if you are looking for the slowest time to go to Universal Studios for a day try May 12th or 13th.
The beginning of summer has historically been a very popular time to visit Orlando, but is June a good time to visit Universal Studios? So I’m going to start with a pro because there are a lot of cons here. June and July typically give families more flexibility to take longer trips to Universal as they don’t have to worry about school. As you can probably guess, the downside is Universal crowds typically start to pick up towards the end of June and last through early August. Florida temperatures are notoriously humid in the summer as well.
With all of that being said, summer vacations at Universal Orlando can still be a blast! Universal also has our favorite water park in Orlando with Volcano Bay! Make sure to be prepared and plan your trip in advance if you are trying to avoid being out in the heat. You can take advantage of the Early Park Admission which comes with all Park Prodigy Universal Orlando tickets. You can split your days up, and be sure to take pool breaks.
If you’re picking a full week in June to visit Universal Studios we recommend the 1st – 6th. But if you are looking for the slowest time to go to Disney World for a day try June 7th or 8th.
There are very few places in the country that celebrate the 4th of July like Orlando Florida! Guests will be able to enjoy specially themed events and even head over to Disney for fireworks at the Magic Kingdom for a few nights. The few days leading up to the 4th has always been one of the most popular time to visit Universal Studios. With that being said, one of the most interesting trends over the past few years has been more and more discounts in late July and early August than years past. For this reason if you can grab a discounted Universal vacation package or Discount Universal tickets this can be one of the cheapest times to visit Universal Studios.
Just like in June, guests will still have to deal with the heat. This is most likely why so many people have tried to stay away the past few years, and we have been able to stay at some great Universal on-site resorts at amazing rates! So when is the best time to visit Universal in July? If you are planning a full week we recommend July 25th – 31st. If you are only visiting Universal Orlando for one or two days in July we recommend the 28th or 29th.
A: Like all theme parks, the holiday season has a way of bringing in the crowds. However, this doesn’t mean you and your family can’t enjoy some festive fun without avoiding the crowds as much as possible. The highest crowds come as early as December 12th and follow throughout the rest of December. That said, planning a Christmastime trip to Universal in early December, or as early as November (with the exception of Thanksgiving week) is the perfect way to enjoy the holiday festivities without the stress of crowds.
A: According to our Crowd Calendar, the absolute best time to visit (in terms of low crowds) in 2020 is September.
A: May-August, October, November and December.
There has never been a time where it’s been so important to book your Universal Orlando vacation with a park expert. With changes happening at a rapid pace, it’s important to book your vacation with a Universal Orlando expert to walk you through the entire process and answer any questions along the way. When you book your Universal Orlando vacation with The Park Prodigy, it includes our services absolutely FREE!
Once we plan the perfect itinerary for you, you’ll pay just $50 per person down to hold your vacation. Final payment is due 45 days prior to arrival and payment plans are available. To get started you can request a no-obligation Universal vacation quote online or by calling one of our travel experts at 407-630-8650.
If you’re not in need of a package but would still like to get into Universal for EARPY PARK ADMISSION be sure to check out our Universal Orlando Universal Orlando Tickets! All Park Prodigy Universal Orlando tickets will get you into the park one hour before regular park guests!
If you’re not sure when to plan your next Universal vacation, Our Universal Orlando Crowd Calendar is the best tool to help you get the most out of your time in the parks. We breakdown the park crowds, park hours of operation, ticket prices by day, and average temperature.