Cheap Tickets - Penny Pincher's Guide to IOA

Just when you thought you could scale a fence, bolt unnoticed through a service area and pop out inside the park, reality hits. You're going to have to pay to enjoy a day at Islands of Adventure. $59.75? Plus tax? Trust me, it's worth it. But you have options, especially if you think you'll be back again soon.

Annual Passes

The premium annual pass, which grants you unlimited access to both of the Universal Orlando parks for the next 365 days after it is activated goes for $179.95. You can buy the pass online or at the park. Yes, it will run you about the same as three 1-day retail tickets and it's even better because you save $8 a day with the free self-parking perk (just flash your pass at the garage entrance) and you also get 15-20% discounts on food and merchandise. Pass renewals have been offered as low as $99.95 from time to time.

A seasonal pass -- which Universal calls Power Pass -- is also available. At just $119.95 the pass allows you access to both parks for a full year from the date of purchase, except for the busiest days of the year. When? Summer weekends, Spring Break and the last week of the year. Parking is NOT included with the Power Pass.

While the park has had admission promos in the past with everything from the Florida Lottery to Wendy's, Burger King and Taco Bell, you can usually depend on some kind of annual pass discount from the Fan Club or from AAA.

1-Day Ticket

Yes, $59.75 plus tax, but you can shave a few bucks off that. If you are a member of AAA (the American Automobile Association) you can flash your card to get $4 off every 1-day ticket. Buying the tickets at a participating AAA office will typically yield a similar 10% discount, with the occasional season deal yielding as much as a 20% discount.

Don't belong to AAA? Small discounts are available on some travel specialty sites. sells the Universal 1-day adult ticket for a fair price yet sweetens the deal with free shipping included.

Another way to save money is to buy the Entertainment book. Previous years have included coupons that will give you $7 in Universal Scrip (money you can use inside the parks) for every adult 2-day, 2-park ticket you purchase (ofr $5 for every child ticket) -- up to four with a single a coupon. The offer may not be in the latest edition, but great area coupons can still be found.

Multi-Day Tickets

Staying for longer than a day or care to hop between parks? Are you sure you don't want the Annual Pass? Well, in that case you will find that the 2-Day tickets cost less than two 1-Day passes and you're allowed to hop from Islands of Adventure to Universal Studios Florida on both days (the 1-Day ticket does not have park-hopping perks).

There are other options -- like a pass good for 14 consecutive days that is good at both parks as well as Sea World. Wet and Wild waterpark -- and even Busch Gardens Tampa. You can buy these at the park or have them delivered by mail.

Back to Penny Pincher's Guide -- Hotel Discounts -- Food and Shopping

Logo art and most renderings Copyright 1999-2005 Universal Orlando. A Universal Studios/Rank Group Joint Venture. All Rights Reserved. All reproductions of the park, or park content trademarks, are done under the "fair use" realm of trademark law. This site, its creator and associates, are not affiliated with Universal -- but we sure do love the place!