Universal Orlando December 2022 Park Hours and Early Park Admission Updates

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Universal Orlando December Park Hours presents some exciting opportunities for visitors. December starts with hours and procedures typical for a slower time of year. Then, as the days get closer to Christmas week, the park hours increase to accommodate the larger expected crowds. These larger crowds will be enjoying the holiday festivities at Universal Orlando.

For most of this month, Universal Orlando December theme park hours and early park admission procedures match the expected pattern. Early park admission happens only at Islands of Adventure for most of the month. Islands of Adventure has been the sole early park admission option for most of the year. Thus, veteran guests should not be surprised. Also, the daily operating hours match standard procedure, with the theme parks being open officially at 9:00 am and closing on average around 7:00 pm.

Universal Orlando December
At Universal Orlando Resort, traditional holiday cuisine is taken to the next level with festive food and exclusive entertainment experiences that every true foodie should have on their wish list.

However, as we look at operation hours starting around December 17th, we see changes to that pattern. From December 17th through the end of the month, the theme park hours extend to later at 9:00 pm or 10:00 pm often. This extension of later hours commonly happens around the holiday school break period.

Then, on Saturday, December 24th, park hours make a noticeable change through the end of the year. Both theme parks open officially to all guests at 8:00 am. Once again, this adjustment fits a model expected during the busiest time of year at the Orlando area theme parks.

Two more important details should be mentioned about operation hours and procedures starting December 26th. Early park admission happens at both theme parks starting at 7:00 am on that date. Also, the parks close at 10:00 pm during those nights with one significant exception.

That exception leads to my second noteworthy detail. Universal Studios Florida is scheduled to be open until 1:00 am on December 31st. Guests could ring in the “New Year” at the theme park. As of the time of writing, I have seen no information about any special activities that evening. Still, I would expect some soon.

If you are visiting Universal Orlando around Christmas Day through New Year’s Day, I have two final thoughts; one, I wish you good luck since the crowds will be enormous. I suggest arriving early. This would be the time of year when the parks hit maximum capacity, so it is possible that admission will be limited later in the day.

However, if you plan to visit on December 31st, be on the lookout for information about special events that evening at Universal Studios Florida. Universal Orlando theme parks rarely stay open that late for the public so a chance to be there that late would be a great opportunity.

Universla Olrndo December

Now, this is Universal Orlando so theme park operating hours and early park admission can change at a moment’s notice so check their official mobile app often. I know that I will be checking often.

Are you planning to visit Universal Orlando during this time of year? If so, please let us know in the comments below.


Pirates & Princesses (PNP) is an independent, opinionated fan-powered news blog that covers Disney and Universal Theme Parks, Themed Entertainment and related Pop Culture from a consumer's point of view. Opinions expressed by our contributors do not necessarily reflect the views of PNP, its editors, affiliates, sponsors or advertisers. PNP is an unofficial news source and has no connection to The Walt Disney Company, NBCUniversal or any other company that we may cover.