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Why you might splurge for $75 valet parking at Universal Orlando

June 07, 2022
4 min read
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FastPass, Express Pass, Lightning Lane, private cut-the-line VIP tours, special access hours and more -- there's no shortage of ways that theme park visitors can spend extra to make their days that much easier ... and more enjoyable.

After all, nobody likes to spend their vacation days just waiting in lines, and theme parks aren't shy about providing upgraded service and shorter waits to those willing to pay the price.

But this pay-more, get-more philosophy isn't just limited to shorter lines inside the theme parks. You can pay extra for VIP parking, too.

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At Universal Orlando, that's actually a valet parking option that rings in at a whopping $75 for one car, for one day.

(Photo by Summer Hull/The Points Guy)

So yes, you can indeed pull up, drop the keys and dash off to be the first inside the Wizarding World of Harry Potter or on Velocicoaster or whatever your thrill-seeking heart desires as long as you've got the extra cash to shell out before your day even starts.

My thrifty dad would be embarrassed that I'm even talking about a $75 parking spot, let alone that I've actually tried it (twice). But if you're curious to know just how much better your Universal Orlando theme park day can get when you start (and end) it with valet parking, this story's for you.

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Parking options at Univeral Orlando

There are several types of parking at Universal Orlando with not only regular parking ($27) but also prime parking ($60 for a better spot in the garage) and valet parking ($75). And because things are rarely simple anymore, there's also free self-parking after 6 p.m. and a free upgrade to prime parking (with the purchase of a regular spot) with an Avis or Budget car rental from the Orlando International Airport (MCO).

Valet parking is also included in the price of both the private and the group VIP Universal Orlando tours.

Regular and prime parking options are located in the parking garages but valet parking is separate from the rest and is not located in the garages. Instead, you follow signs specifically for VIP parking. It opens one hour before early park admission hours.

Related: How much time do you really save with Universal Orlando Express Pass?

What do you get for $75 Universal Orlando parking?

Pulling up to a theme park and just handing over the keys for someone else to deal with parking while you get right to the fun is pretty great by itself. But while being just a four-minute walk from the car to the gates of Univeral's Islands of Adventure was awesome, that's not even the best part of the valet parking experience.

After handing over your car to the valet, the valet parking area of Universal Orlando has its own security entrance.

(Photo by Summer Hull/The Points Guy)

Both times I've used this entrance, there's been no wait to get through security. That means not only are you just a couple of minutes from the park entrance but the security line is a non-issue, too.

At the end of your park day, the valet offers you water and pulls your cooled-off car around so you can zip right away to your hotel or next adventure.

(Photo by Summer Hull/The Points Guy)

Related: 16 Universal Orlando secrets to know before your next trip

Is it worth it?

Valet parking at Universal Orlando is $75, so for most people and in most situations, that's simply too much to pay to park a car for a single day — particularly when there are other more inexpensive options.

However, if you're not on a strict budget and want everything to be as seamless as possible, it's a pretty great option — particularly if you were already contemplating prime parking.

If you fall into the group that will take all the buy-up opportunities available while at Universal Orlando, then maybe you're in a VIP tour that includes valet parking already.

And in that case, enjoy: It sure beats the long walks and hot, sunny parking lots you'll find down the road at Disney.

Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
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3XEarn 3 Points per $1 spent at Restaurants and Supermarkets
3XEarn 3 Points per $1 spent at Gas Stations, Air Travel and Hotels
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  • Intro Offer
    For a limited time, earn 80,000 bonus ThankYou® Points after you spend $4,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening

    Earn 80,000 ThankYou® points
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  • Annual Fee

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    Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

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Why We Chose It

The Citi Premier’s 3 points per dollar spent across a wide range of popular categories is one of the more lucrative offerings in the world of points and miles. The Citi Premier comes with a $95 annual fee and is currently offering a solid sign up bonus of 80,000 points after you spend $4,000 on purchases within the first three months. It also has some valuable transfer partners to make the most of your rewards. Add in access to Citi Entertainment plus a $100 hotel credit for any single-stay hotel booking that exceeds $500 or more, excluding taxes and fees, booked through the Citi travel website, there are few reasons why the Citi Premier should not be in every traveler’s wallet.

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  • $100 annual hotel savings benefit (on single hotel stay bookings of $500 or more, excluding taxes and fees, booked through thankyou.com)
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  • Lacks travel protections that other travel rewards cards come with
  • For a limited time, earn 80,000 bonus ThankYou® Points after you spend $4,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening
  • Earn 3 Points per $1 spent at Restaurants and Supermarkets
  • Earn 3 Points per $1 spent at Gas Stations, Air Travel and Hotels
  • Earn 1 Point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Annual Hotel Savings Benefit
  • 80,000 Points are redeemable for $800 in gift cards when redeemed at thankyou.com
  • No expiration and no limit to the amount of points you can earn with this card
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees on purchases