While Universal Orlando Resort has released plenty of information about its new Volcano Bay water park over the past several months, one detail that the resort has been quite cagey about has been exactly how much guests would have to pay to enter this park. Though Universal allowed guests to purchase three park, three day passes earlier this year that included Volcano Bay, if you were an annual passholder or just wanted a single day ticket to this park, you've been out of luck. That is, until now. 

Earier this week Universal finally revealed how much a visit to Volcano Bay is going to cost guests who don’t want to buy a three-day, three park ticket. And to almost no one’s surprise, it’s going to be expensive. 

Current annual passholders will need to purchase a one-time upgrade

 Image: Universal

If you already have a Universal Orlando Resort annual pass, I have some bad news for you: Volcano Bay admission is not included. However, current annual passholders can upgrade their current, two-park annual pass into a three-park pass for its four annual pass tiers, by paying the difference between your current pass price and the new three-park passes. The new price for the three-park annual passes are as follows:

  • Premier: $688.99
  • Preferred: $483.99
  • Power: $443.99
  • Seasonal: $383.99

With these new prices, the upgrade to a three-park pass costs $99 for all but the top-most tier, which guests will need to pay $149 extra for.  If you need a refresher on the differences between the different tiers, you can read more here.

Image: Universal

Interestingly, these upgrade fees are not prorated, which means that annual passholders will pay the same fee to upgrade their pass, no matter whether they have three months left on their pass, or 11 months, which might be a big deal for guests who want to upgrade their pass, but have an expiration date in the near future. 

And aside from timing issues, there's something else current annual passholders may want to consider before dropping the cash on a new thee park annual pass for Universal Orlando Resort. 

Almost all annual passes have blockouts for Volcano Bay

Image: Universal

We’ve known for some time that the new Volcano Bay water park would have some seriously low capacity, in part because of its queue-less design. And with this in mind, it should come as little surprise that Universal is trying to keep large crowds to a minimum at this park with the expansion of blockout dates for annual passholders. Only the Premier pass has no blockout dates for Volcano Bay, which would explain why the upgrade cost is so much higher for this pass specifically. You can check out Universal's official blockout calendar here.  

While it isn't perhaps a perfect comparison, we can't help but compare Universal Orlando Resort's new pricing scheme to its next door neighbor, Walt Disney World, which recently raised prices for its Platinum Plus pass, which, like Universal's Premier pass, includes admission to all theme parks and water parks with no blockout dates to $869.00 (or $769.00 for Florida residents). While that's still quite a lot more than the $688.99 cost for Universal's most expensive pass, it does at least include two extra theme parks and an additional water park.



The Sea World Aquatica here in San Diego is only $44...The prices for the water parks in Orlando are ridiculous!

Just wanted to point out that Aquatica and Volcano Bay charge for parking. Both Disney water parks have free parking. I would say that for single day admission they area better deal.

I'm hoping volcano bay is going to turn into the "VIP" water park experience, and so far it looks like universal is going to be able to do that. More interested if they are going to offer private cabanas (and the cost if so) and if they are going to offer anything like express pass to the waterpark as well. All of those might an add after they have been open for a while thing.

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