Saving Money At Universal Studios

by Pam on August 22, 2011

While traveling in Los Angeles, my husband and I decided to stop and spend a day at Universal Studios.  We knew it would be pricy, but we thought it would be worth the time and money we would spend.  We opted for the $74 day pass, although the lady at the booth sure tried her hardest to get us to buy the $119 pass so that we wouldn’t have to wait in line.  I am glad we didn’t go for that, though, as we went on a Thursday and hardly had to wait at all to see any of the attractions.

There is also an option to pay $21.95 for an all you can eat pass within Universal Studios.  We weren’t aware of this option beforehand, so since we had already eaten breakfast, we decided not to go for it.  However, if you plan on eating all three meals there, this would probably be a really good deal.  We ended up only eating lunch at Universal Studios so we were glad we didn’t buy the pass.  The pass does not include tax or beverages, but does include snacks.

Overall, we thought it was worth the money as it was a really unique experience.  We went on all the rides and saw all the attractions that interested us.  The studio tour was particularly interesting, and the King Kong portion of the tour was really amazing.

If you are really big into meeting movie stars and being treated like a V.I.P, there is a package you can buy for $259.  This includes your own guide during your time at Universal Studios, a gourmet buffet for lunch, and special treatment and back stage privileges.

Parking at Universal Studios is $20 for the closest spots, and $15 for the spots further away.  We opted for the $20 spot and it was literally about a 1 minute walk away from the ticket booths and entrance.  There are shops and cafes including the Hard Rock Café that open up around 10AM and we made sure to be in line for tickets before everything opened.  Going on a Thursday worked really well for us as it was not crowded at all, and the lines went really quickly.  We were able to see and do everything we wanted by about 3PM, so if you boot it, you can easily see the whole thing in one day.

Don’t let the lady at the entrance persuade you to spend more than you really need to spend.  If you only plan to eat one meal in the park, don’t go for the all you can eat pass.  And unless you really want to be treated like royalty, just go for the regular $74 pass.   Although there is a lot to take in at Universal Studios, it can easily be done in a single day.  If you enjoy shopping, do all the attractions first, and then use whatever time you have left to browse the various shops throughout the studios.

It was definitely worth the money, in my opinion.  It’s one of those things that is a once in a lifetime experience, so sometimes it’s okay to splurge a little.

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