Perks of an Onsite Universal Orlando Resort
The perks of an onsite Universal Resort are wonderful! Staying onsite at Universal Orlando has so many perks! With several resorts to choose from that range in price and amenities, there really is a resort for everyone! From beautiful pools, to easy transportation, to early park entry, staying onsite at Universal Orlando is a must!
If given the choice between staying at an onsite Universal Orlando Resort or a local Orlando hotel, I do not have to think twice. Staying onsite always wins in my mind, and the perks of staying onsite are well worth it. With the introduction of Universal’s Endless Summer Dockside and Surfside Inn and Suites, it’s hard to pass up those low nightly rates for a local Orlando hotel.
Perks of an Onsite Universal Resort Mean Free Transportation
One of the top perks of staying at an onsite Universal Orlando Resort is the transportation. All of the onsite Universal Orlando resorts offer at least one form of complimentary transportation. Some are even close enough that you can walk. While walking around a theme park for 12 hours and then having to walk to my resort doesn’t always sound fun….they are much closer than you think.
Guests of Universal’s Premier Resorts, Hard Rock Hotel, Loew’s Portofino Bay, and Loew’s Royal Pacific Resort, have the option to take a water taxi OR a walking path to the gates of both Islands of Adventure and Universal Studios.
Those staying at Loew’s Sapphire Falls also have a water taxi to and from the theme parks.
Finally, if you are one of those who choose to stay at Universal’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort, Universal’s Aventura Hotel, and Endless Summer will take a motorcoach to and from the parks.
Are you visiting Volcano Bay? Then Cabana Bay guests and Aventura guests have a walking path direct to Volcano Bay. Otherwise, if you are staying at one of the others, Universal provides motorcoach transportation to and from Volcano Bay.
Early Park Admission for All Onsite Guests
Each day, one of the Universal Orlando theme parks opens an hour early to onsite guests. This is another awesome perk of staying onsite! Regardless of which park, this is a huge perk for any guest of Universal. Early Park Admission is especially valuable to those who want to visit the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. Combined with easy transportation, Express Pass, and Early Park Admission, guests can enjoy so much before the parks open to the public.
Keep in mind that to enjoy both Diagon Alley and Hogsmeade, you do need a park to park ticket. The best plan is to start on the side that has Early Park Admission, and then hop on the Hogwart’s Express for the other side just before park open. You’ll be ahead of the pack all day!
Express Pass is a Perk for SOME Onsite Universal Guests
My favorite perk of an onsite Universal Resorts is Express Pass.
Universal’s Unlimited Express Pass is like the golden ticket to saving time in line. Guests show the Universal Team Member their Express Pass, and they literally show you to the front of the line. It is fantastic!
Nearly all Universal Orlando attractions accept Express Pass. There are less than a handful that do not, including the widely famous Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike.
Guests of Loew’s Royal Pacific Resort, Loew’s Portofino Bay, and Universal’s Hard Rock Hotel receive Unlimited Express Pass as a complimentary perk of staying at one of those hotels. Those who choose to buy just tickets or stay at one of the others, do not. While you can pay to upgrade your tickets if Express Pass is not included, it is quite costly. It is very wise to compare costs to staying at one of the three Premier Resorts versus adding it and staying at one of the more budget friendly hotels. Sometimes, the low nightly rate of the less expensive resorts is not enough to off set the cost of adding Express Pass.
One piece of advice….do not wait until you arrive at Universal to purchase Express Pass. It can sell out, and it will be more costly.
Perks of an Onsite Universal Resort Include Charging Privileges and Delivery
Charging privileges are a huge benefit and convenience for many guests. Simply charging your meal or purchases with your room key is great. You can use these charging privileges at Citywalk restaurants, shops, and in the theme parks. When you add a credit card to your room at check in, this is charged when you scan your room key for purchases.
Not only are guests able to charge to their room, BUT Universal offers complimentary package delivery to your Universal Resort. LOVE this! It’s so inconvenient to carry around purchases during the day. Why not have them delivered back to your room? I love this perk!
Pool Hopping for Universal Resort Guests
One of the exclusive perks of an onsite Universal Orlando Resort is pool hopping. Guests of all the resorts EXCEPT Endless Summer have the perk of pool hopping. This means if you are staying at Portofino Bay and want to hop over to Cabana Bay Beach Resort for the lazy river, you can! Or, does the sand bottom, music filled Hard Rock Hotel pool look fun for an afternoon? Guests can enjoy this, even if they are staying at Aventura!
Universal allows pool hopping for guests. Guests of Endless Summer Surfside / Dockside to not have this privilege, unfortunately. If you choose to take advantage of this, you simply need to visit the front desk of the resort where you plan to swim. They will give you access to the pool, and you can enjoy your day!
What is your favorite perk of an onsite Universal Orlando Resort?
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