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2018 Parking Price Increases At Walt Disney World And Universal Studios Orlando – How To Avoid Paying These Fees

October 25, 2018

With Disney and Universal Studios unarguably being the biggest, and most popular, Entertainment Venues in Central Florida, when one of them increases prices or introduces something “never seen before”, we can almost guarantee that the other one will follow suit.

So, while it’s frustrating, especially to those on a strict budget, these increases should come at no surprise. Disney very recently raised their Parking Prices and implemented a new date-based Park Ticketing System, so it was pretty inevitable that we would be seeing Universal Studios making some changes to their Pricing shortly after, as well.

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Walt Disney World

The New Parking Prices are:

Standard Parking

  • Increasing from $22 to $25

Preferred Parking

  • Increasing from $45 to $50

Parking at Disney Springs, ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex, Typhoon Lagoon, and Blizzard Beach will continue to be Free of charge.

The new overnight Resort Parking is not effected, and Guests can still expect the same fee of $13 – $24 per night added to their folio at checkout.



Universal Studios

The New Parking Prices are:

Regular Parking

  • Increasing from $22 to $25
  • Free self-parking after 6 pm for all guests (not valid for Halloween Horror Nights)

Prime Parking

  • Increasing from $35 to $40

Valet Parking

Before 6 pm

  • $25.00 for 2 hours
  • over two hours increasing from $45 to $50
  • Red Carpet Valet over two hours increasing from $55 to $60

After 6 PM

  • $25.00 for 2 hours
  • over two hours after 6 PM increasing from $40 to $45
  • Red Carpet Valet over two hours after 6 PM increasing from $50 to $55

RV/Bus Parking

  • Increasing from $25 to $30.

For Preferred Annual Passholders

  • $20.00*
  • $35.00 Red Carpet

For Premier Annual Passholders

  • Free*
  • $20.00 Red Carpet

*Excludes New Year’s Eve, Mardi Gras event nights, July 4th, and Halloween Horror Nights event nights.


How to avoid paying these fees

If you plan on visiting these Parks day after day, the cost can add up very quickly. But, knowledge goes a long way. And you can end up saving a lot of money, just by making a few changes to your plans.

Stay on-site

You’ve probably heard me talk about the Perks of staying on Property a gazillion times.

I also know many Guests who swear that they’re saving a lot of money by staying at off-property Hotels.

That could very well be true. But, remember to add in those extra “hidden” costs before making your decision. You many not be saving as much as you think you are. Ubers, Hotel Fees, Rental Cars, Gas, Shuttle Services, etc… all add up, making that “great deal” on a Hotel not always worth the extra time and energy it takes getting to the Parks each day.

Related Post: Disney Doesn’t HAVE To Be Expensive…Learn The Tricks To Getting The Cost Down

Use Free Transportation

Both Walt Disney World and Universal Studios Orlando have Free Transportation to get their Guests where they need to be.

If you’re at Walt Disney World, you don’t even need to be staying on-site to use these modes of transportation on Property. (You do need to be staying at one of the Walt Disney World Resorts to get a free ride from the airport to your Resort via the Magical Express).

However, it does end up being cheaper, if you do stay on property (further proving my first point).

If you don’t have a room at one of Disney’s Resorts, you can park your car for free during the day, at the Resorts, BUT you must prove that you have a reservation there. If you don’t, they will direct you to where you will be allowed to park your car, which will cost you money (Transportation and Ticket Center)Once you pay to Park your car at the TTA, you’ll be able to take Free Transportation to get where you need to go.

If you stay on property, you still can’t park at other Resorts, other than your own, without a Reservation. But, Parking at the TTA and Parks is considered a Perk for staying at a Disney Resort, so you won’t be charged for Parking (saving yourself $25 in Parking costs, per day)

At Universal Studios, you are allowed to Park your car at the Resorts, but this comes at a cost of $45 plus tax per day, per vehicle, for non-Resort Guests. If you stay on Property with a vehicle, Overnight Parking is $14 plus tax per night, per vehicle.

And, unfortunately, Free Transportation is only available to Guests who have a room at one of the Resorts.

See how these “little” hidden costs add up fast?

Disney Springs

Since Disney Springs is a large shopping center, it is free to park in their Garages. There are buses and boats that will take you to the Resorts. If you have reservations at one of the Resorts, and don’t want to Park at that Resort, just hop on the bus to your destination.

Need to get to one of the Parks? Take the bus or ferry to any one of the Resorts and switch buses once you get there. Sure, it will take a lot longer than just paying for Parking, but it’s free.

Consider Annual Passes

If you frequent the Parks a lot, consider becoming an Annual Passholder. All Passholders at Disney, as well as Gold and Platinum Passholders at Universal Studios get Free Parking one of the benefits of being a Passholder. Add in the other discounts you get, you can actually find yourself paying less.

Live out of state? They get Annual Passes too!

Related Post: Annual Passes: Will It Save You Money?

Uber / Lyft

Even if you have a car, if you’re at Disney and want to go to Universal Studios, or vise-versa, getting a car service could be cheaper than paying for parking at the other Resort. Of course, this option isn’t free, but you could end up spending less…and you will get picked up closer to the Main Gate. Hopefully you’re not like me and forgets where you park…oops…

How do you avoid paying for Parking?

ExploreWithCatherine.com is not authorized or endorsed by, or officially connected with The Walt Disney Company, or any of their affiliates. For official Disney information, visit http://www.disney.com.

Hawaii Destination Specialist

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