Orlando is the theme park capital of the world and home to world-class parks such as inside Disney World and Universal Orlando.
Universal Orlando is second only to Disney world when it comes to Orlando theme parks and resorts, but what is their average daily attendance?
The Universal Orlando resorts see an average of 61,000 visitors per day. The resort has two theme parks, Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure, that had a 2019 daily average attendance of roughly 29,00 and 28,000 respectively. The Volcano Bay water park saw an average of 4,000 visitors per day.
In this article, we’ll break down the average daily attendance for Universal Orlando parks, what that data actually means, and why you should care when the parks are going to be busier.
How Many People Visit Universal Orlando Every Day?
To figure out a theme park’s average daily attendance, you first need to get accurate data for how many people visited during a calendar year.
Universal Orlando contains two theme parks, Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure, as well as the Volcano Bay water park.
For the purposes of this article, we’ll be using data from the 2019 calendar year.
This is mainly because for 2020 and 2021, attendance numbers suffered a sharp decline because of the worldwide pandemic, making them substantially lower and inaccurate.
- Universal Studios saw 10.92 million visitors.
- Islands of Adventure saw 10.38 million visitors.
- Volcano Bay saw 1.81 million visitors.
Once you get this data, you can take the yearly attendance and divide it by 365 to get a rough average for daily attendance.
2019 Average Daily Park Attendance Universal Orlando:
- Universal Studios’ average daily attendance was roughly 30,000 visitors per day
- Islands of Adventure’s average daily attendance was roughly 28,000 visitors per day
- Volcano Bay’s average daily attendance was roughly 5,000 visitors per day.
There are slight deviations in total visitors depending on where you source the data, as well as small discrepancies depending on how you round up the numbers for daily attendance.
Overall, these estimates fall within the range of available attendance data for 2019.
But knowing the average daily attendance doesn’t tell you how busy the parks will be on any given day.
Theme parks go through seasonal cycles when they see more or fewer visitors on an average day.
For example, even though Florida winters are mild, attendance at the Volcano Bay water park is much, much lower in December, January, and February than it is in June, July, and August.
The onsite theme parks see these kinds of trends as well. Summer tends to be the busier time of year for theme parks thanks to better weather and because kids are out of school.
The time of year isn’t the only thing that affects attendance. Holidays and weekends also see far more visitors than normal work days.
Most theme parks see the same kinds of trends. When the school year starts, the busiest time of summer comes to an end.
Holiday events are usually packed or sell out the parks, with much higher attendance numbers on those days.
Kids are out of school, parents have time off work for the holiday, and many theme parks put on special events for the holidays with limited-time characters, themes, or attractions.
Weekends are generally much busier than times during the week because it’s when parents and kids don’t have to be at work or school, freeing up time to go to the parks for a day or two.
Thankfully, fluctuations in expected attendance have been tracked long enough that you can usually get an accurate picture of what your day at the park will look like.
Expected attendance calendars online are easy to read and tell you if you should expect above-average or below-average attendance in the park for any given date.
But is it even important to know whether the park expects its average attendance for the day you’re going?
Why Does It Matter If The Park Is Busier?
Whenever you’re trying to plan your days at Universal Orlando, checking an expected attendance calculator can be a lifesaver.
If you find a few days with lower expected attendance, you’ll probably be able to find a better deal on entrance tickets.
Theme park tickets aren’t based on a set price. Of course, they have a minimum they will sell for, but generally, they fluctuate between two points based on the specific date’s expected attendance.
Days with a lower expected attendance will sell for slightly less than days with an above-average expected attendance.
You can save up to ten percent just by switching which days you decide to visit the parks using this kind of data.
On top of savings, less crowded days are just more enjoyable.
Barring special events like Halloween Horror Nights, all the attractions in the park are the same whether it’s busy or not.
Unfortunately, the more crowded the park gets, the longer the lines are for everything inside the park.
Visiting on days with above-average attendance will mean longer wait times for each ride, service counter, and even bathrooms.
For visitors who only have a day or two to spare for Universal Orlando parks, you need to go on less crowded days.
On a busy day, you might spend two hours in line for a ride. On a less-crowded day, that same line may take only twenty minutes.
That’s a huge loss of park time, spent standing in line instead of exploring or going through attractions.
Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure had nearly identical daily average attendance numbers in 2019, sitting around 28,000.
The Volcano Bay water park saw roughly 4,000 to 5,000 visitors per day as well.
Universal Orlando is the second-most popular resort in the Orlando area and one of the most-visited resorts in the world.
If you want to find better deals and wait through shorter lines, try to find days when the park isn’t as busy.