Some need-to-know tips before going to Universal Studios Japan
Universal Studios Japan (USJ) is 1 of the 6 Universal Studios theme parks in the world. In USJ, there are many different areas, each of which is inspired by a famous city (Hollywood, New York, San Francisco, etc.) or a familiar movie or novel (Harry Potter, The Flying Dinosaur, Jaws, Spider-Man, etc).
It is a very crowded theme park, so it seems impossible to play all the exciting and most famous games. Besides, those popular games may cost us 1 to 3 hours of waiting? So, how can we develop a "strategy" before going to USJ to save time (and money) and enjoy a whole day with our favorite games? I have visited USJ twice, and these are the vital tips that I have obtained. I hope those can help you achieve the most memorable time with your friends and family in USJ.
I. Preparation before going
1. Check to predict the crowded/ uncrowded day to plan the trip
As I said, USJ is usually very crowded, so the first and the best tip for me is to...choose the uncrowded day to go! Little be known, many websites are predicting the number of visitors going to USJ, and I use 15plala (besides USJ, this Website also predicts the number of visitors going to Tokyo Disneyland!).
Though this Website is in Japanese, it is not too hard to comprehend. After choosing a month to go, white, blue, and green are uncrowded days.
On the contrary, yellow, red, brown, and black are crowded days, and you should consider carefully before going on those days. I usually choose green days because it is uncrowded enough on those days. Blue or white days are pretty rare, almost non-existent, so I cannot choose those days either.
Besides using a Website to check, USJ also becomes very crowded during annual holidays such as:
- Spring break (end of February, beginning of March)
- Summer holiday (August)
- Christmas and New Year (end of December, beginning of January)
2. Check the ticket price beforehand
One small tip to save money on the ticket to USJ is to check the ticket price beforehand and choose to go on days with a low price. The number of visitors to USJ changes, so the ticket price also changes depending on the day. I did not know this the first time I came to USJ, so I booked the expensive ticket (8400 yen). On uncrowded days, the ticket is usually cheaper (about 7800 yen). On crowded days, it is usually about 8400-8900 yen or above.
3. Buying birthday tickets
The next tip to save money on tickets to USJ is to buy birthday tickets. I usually consider going to USJ on my birth month (or the month after that) to purchase this ticket. Birthday tickets are 500 yen (or more) cheaper than regular tickets and can be applied for a group of a maximum of five people.
Although birthday tickets are only sold on Website USJ in Japanese, it is not difficult to use Google Chrome's Translation to buy the ticket!
4. Buying online tickets before going
This is not a strange tip, isn't it? Buying online tickets beforehand helps me save lots of time waiting in line! USJ's online tickets are sold on their official website (in Japanese, but you can use Chrome's Translate to buy).
If you want to buy online tickets using English, you can consider buying tickets from a third party. Reputable third parties certified by USJ on their website for buying tickets include Klook, Kkday, Voyagin, Tripadvisor, and Traveloka.
5. Check the weather
It is a small tip, but it came from a valuable lesson when I had to "came all the way" to USJ on a rainy day. On that rainy day, some high extreme rides (that I absolutely love) were stopped until the rain stopped; moreover, I wouldn't say I liked getting wet from the rain very much.
Besides, USJ is a great place to take photos with different themes such as American or European style or in Minion or Harry Potter world, etc, and the rainy weather prevented me from taking good photos. Therefore, to obtain a comfortable and convenient experience and have the best photos in USJ, don't forget to check the weather and choose to go on sunny days.
6. Downloading the USJ app
To easily find the way or save time in USJ, I downloaded the USJ app on my phone to check the waiting time for each game, show, parade (updated according to real-time), and see the map of USJ. This app is extremely convenient for me since I always check the waiting time for famous games and wait until the waiting time is short to come and play.
Disclaimer: All these tips come from my personal opinion and are based on my hobbies and traveling preferences which may be different from that of many people. Therefore, these should only be used for references, and the most important thing is that you have a fun time on USJ!
These are all the tips before going to USJ. In part 2, I will share about all the tickets that help save the time waiting in the line, and other tips that little people know (about the food, the show, parade, etc) during the time in USJ that I know!!!
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