Home » Universal Orlando Resort Changes Several Policies in Light of COVID-19 Closures

    Universal Orlando Resort Changes Several Policies in Light of COVID-19 Closures

    Universal Studios Florida

    Earlier this week, Universal Orlando Resort announced that it will keep its theme parks, hotels, and CityWalk closed through April 19 because of the COVID-19 pandemic, while continuing to pay Team Members who are classified as “nonexempt and hourly full-time and part-time” during this time based on their average weekly hours from the four weeks before the parks closed. Those who receive salaries will be paid their normal rates.

    Following this big announcement, Universal also took some time to confirm that they are changing some of their policies in the wake of this extended closure

    1. All Annual Pass payments have been suspended 

    Though Walt Disney World has gotten some criticism for continuing to draw payments from annual passholders on monthly payment plans, Universal has said that guests who are using their FlexPay system will have their payments suspended, effective March 25, 2020. Universal has said that that they will provide more details at a later date about when payments will resume. There is no action needed right now from annual passholders, as this change is automatic and has already taken effect. 

    2. Annual passes are also being extended for the length of the closure

    It might seem like a commonsense measure, but Universal has also confirmed that, like Walt Disney World annual passes for Universal Orlando Resort will be extended by the number of days that Universal Orlando Resort ends up being closed. Of course, blockout dates and other restrictions will continue to apply, depending on what kind of annual pass you have, but it looks like annual pass expiration dates will be extended by a month 

    3. Travel change window extended to the end of August

    Right now unfortunately there is no way to know how long Universal Orlando Resort (and other theme parks) will ultimately be closed due to the spread of COVID-19. However, Universal is still encouraging guests to book travel this summer, and are offering special rates from May through August. And if you end up having to change your plans (or the resort ends up staying closed for even longer) Universal has confirmed that all hotel stays and theme park tickets that are purchased for stays before August 31, 2020 are fully refundable.

    4. Universal’s Endless Summer Resort – Dockside Inn and Suites grand opening to be rescheduled

    Though the newest hotel at Universal Orlando Resort, Universal’s Endless Summer Resort – Dockside Inn and Suites, was set to reopen earlier this month, Universal is postponing the opening of this hotel indefinitely, and has announced that a new opening date will be revealed after the resort reopens. Unfortunately as we continue to evaluate our offerings during this time, a new opening date will be announced at a later time. In the meantime though guests can still book rooms at this hotel for the summer and fall. 

    As always, while this situation is evolving, all travelers should check out the CDC’s official site here, which has information on the virus and how to prevent its spread.