Universal Studios Raises Tickets Prices At The Gate
Hate how expensive everything's gotten in Los Angeles? It is, after all, the seventh most costly city to live in among all U.S. cities, according to Inc.
Now you may have more reason to gripe. Universal Studios Hollywood hiked its gate ticket prices by $5, reports the L.A. Times. Tickets at the gate have gone up from $115 to $120. Universal Orlando in Florida has also boosted its prices. The move comes after Disneyland had raised its prices last week; the park added $2 to daily entry fees, another $2 to parking fees, and $5 to both regular day and peak day passes.
The price hike isn't expected to affect tickets purchased online, however. Though it should be noted that Universal Studios uses a variable pricing system—prime periods like Spring Break are more expensive, with tickets reaching the $110 mark.
Why the high prices? For one thing, Universal Studios has been on a roll, what with the immense popularity of the "Wizarding World of Harry Potter," which opened in April of 2016, and the announcement of an upcoming Super Mario-themed attraction. The park has had such a boon that, in early January, the space reached full capacity for the first time in history; the gates were closed off just after noon. Experts estimate that 40,000 visitors had dropped in on the theme park that day.
Theme parks don't just exist in a vacuum. They are such a a big driver of tourism that, in January, Mayor Eric Garcetti said at a press conference that Southern California theme parks may have helped L.A. break tourism records left and right. In 2016, L.A. County welcomed about 47.3 million visitors in 2016. Prior to this, the county had been setting tourism records for five straight years.