How to Buy Universal Studios Japan Tickets and Express Passes in 2019

How to Buy Universal Studios Japan Tickets and Express Passes

We were poorly organised when we visited Universal Studios Japan in Osaka.  While I had done a lot of research on most of our planned destinations for some reason I did not spend much time on USJ – and we paid the price.  We did not buy our tickets in advance, we did not know that Universal Studios Japan Express Passes existed until the day prior to our visit – by which time they had already sold out!  As a result while we did manage to have a good day out I definitely believe that we would have had a much better day at USJ if we had been better prepared.

On our second visit to USJ we pre-purchased both Royal Passes and Express Pass 4s for our family and had a totally different (and better!) day out.  We powered through the rides and loved skipping the queues to make the most of our time at Universal Studios Japan.

To ensure that you have a much better day at Universal Studios Japan Osaka I definitely recommend that you carefully consider whether to book Express Passes, as it makes a major difference between having an average day out and instead having a great day out!  

Join the Japan Travel Planning Facebook Group

Check out our Japan Travel Planning Facebook Group – you are welcome to join and it is a great resource to enable you to ask questions about your upcoming trip to Japan!

Japan Travel Planning Facebook Group
Click on the image to go to the Japan Travel Planning Facebook Group

Disclaimer:  This article contains affiliate links.  If you book after clicking on one of these links then we may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you.

How to Buy Universal Studios Osaka Tickets

Universal Studios Japan Osaka Tickets and Express Pass (or USJ Fast Pass) can be purchased from a range of options.  Many travel agents offer USJ tickets, and when you are in Japan you can purchase your USJ ticket and Express Passes from Lawson convenience stores which are prolific around Japan.  You can also purchase your Universal Studios Osaka ticket and Express Passes from your hotel on the day of entry – but note it is highly likely you may not be able to purchase an Express Pass from your hotel if they are already sold out.

In fact when we went to USJ we used the Lawson convenience store option, however, it was not a great option as we had difficulty using the ticket machine.  Looking back I would have much preferred to purchase our tickets online before we departed for Japan, in particular to ensure that we could purchase our Express Passes before they ran out.

There are two easy online options to pre-book your entry tickets, Express Passes and special event passes online before you depart on your trip to Japan.

  • Voyagin is an online travel agency specialising in Japan, and the advantage of booking through Voyagin is that they regularly run coupon code discount deals which include Universal Studios Japan entry tickets and Express Passes, as well as special event tickets.
  • Klook is an online travel agency for many Asian countries.  The advantage of using Klook is that they have an app which makes it easy to purchase and access your bookings on your smartphone while you are on the go, and in addition they operate a loyalty program where you receive discounts.  The more you book through Klook the more discounts you receive for follow on bookings!  Check out our detailed personal review of using Klook to book our tickets, transport and tours.

We went to Universal Studios Osaka today, a brilliant day!! Two 40 y.o. adults who left adulting at the door. Cannot emphasise the value of the Express Pass, the longest it took us through any ride was 30 minutes, our day would have been wasted in huuuuge lines otherwise. If you love theme parks or love being a kid, highly recommended! – Jacquie B.

Below I will summarise all of the tickets and passes available and provide links for you to book through either Voyagin or Klook for each item.  Note that each provider has mostly the similar tickets and Express passes, however each have some unique items which can only be purchased through that provider.

Universal Studios Globe Sign
Universal Studios Globe Sign

Voyagin Universal Studios Japan Ticket and Express Pass Page

Voyagin has a very useful Universal Studios Japan page which you can see below where you can enter the date you plan to visit and it will show you all of the Express Passes and Special Events still available for that date and assist you to purchase your items.  The best way to use this page is to then select the Express Pass or special event of interest, and once you have placed it into your shopping cart Voyagin then offers add ons including your entry pass and other available options.

Click here to check out and purchase your Universal Studios Japan Studio Pass and skip the queue Express Passes through Voyagin.

 
Voyagin USJ Studio Entry Pass and Express Pass Purchase Page
Voyagin USJ Studio Entry Pass and Express Pass Purchase Page

What is the Ticket Price for Universal Studios Japan USJ Osaka?

A USJ one day entry ticket provides standard access to USJ, with no skip the line options.  There are three different prices for entry passes depending on how busy the park is expected to be.

Instant confirmation with electronic ticket which can be shown at the entry gate, with open date of entry for up to six months from purchase date.  Note that entry tickets are only valid for one entry – you cannot leave and then re-enter.

Click here to purchase your Universal Studios Japan Entry Pass through either Voyagin or Klook.  Use coupon code MDE8G to get a $A5 discount off your first order through Klook! 

USJ 1.5 Day or 2 Day Entry Tickets

The Universal Studios Japan 1.5 day entry ticket provides standard access to USJ from 3pm on the first day, and for the full day on the second day with no skip the line options.

Click here to purchase your Universal Studios Japan 1.5 Day Entry Pass through either Voyagin or Klook

The USJ 2 day entry ticket provides standard access to USJ for two full days with no skip the line options.

Click here to purchase your Universal Studios Japan 2 Day Entry Pass through Klook

How to Buy Universal Studios Japan Tickets and Express Passes
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Universal Studios Japan™ Royal Studio Pass

Before you purchase any of the other tickets and passes for USJ I recommend you click on the below links to check out pricing and availability for the USJ Royal Pass.  The Royal Pass includes both your entry pass and a Royal Express Pass which includes timed entry  to Harry Potter World and skip the line entry to 14 major attractions, including timed use of 6 major rides, unlimited use of 8 rides and VIP access to shows.  Only 200 Royal Passes are available each day so get in early to get yours.  On our recent visit to USJ Tony and our older children used Royal Passes to get around and managed to do 10 rides in 6 hours!

When you consider the pricing of the Royal Pass you should compare it against the purchase of both a USJ entry ticket plus the cost of an Express Pass.

You need to book your USJ Royal Pass at least two weeks prior to your visit, as the physical ticket and wristband must be delivered to your hotel.  We collected ours with no issues on arrival at our first hotel in Japan.

Click here to check out and purchase your Universal Studios Japan Royal Pass through Voyagin

Royal Studio Pass Wristband
Royal Studio Pass Wristband

Universal Studios Japan Express™ Pass 7

The USJ Express Pass 7 – Backdrop must be purchased in conjunction with an entry ticket and includes timed skip the line access to the following six common ride options, and timed entry to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter.  

  • Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey
  • Flight of the Hippogriff
  • Despicable Me Minion Mayhem
  • The Amazing Adventures of Spiderman OR Jaws
  • Hollywood Dream – The Ride OR Backdraft
  • Jurassic Park – The Ride or Terminator 2

The seventh included ride is the one you can choose your preference out of 4 options detailed below:

  • Space Fantasy – The Ride
  • Hollywood Dream – The Ride – Backdrop
  • The Flying Dinosaur – The Flying Dinosaur
  • Sing on Tour – Sing on Tour

Express Pass pricing varies depending on expected crowd levels – after you click through click on the specific date you plan to visit to see the price – avoid weekends and holiday periods to get the best price.  Only a limited number are available each day, and once they run out there are no more available so book early!

Click here to check out and purchase your Universal Studios Japan Express Pass 7 Options through either Voyagin or Klook

The Flying Dinosaur
The Flying Dinosaur

Universal Studios Japan Express™ Pass 4

The USJ Express Pass 4 must be purchased in conjunction with an entry ticket and includes timed skip the line access to the following three common ride options, and timed entry to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter:

  • Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey
  • The Amazing Adventures of Spiderman OR Hollywood Dream – The Ride
  • Jaws OR Backdraft OR Terminator 2

The fourth included ride is the one you can choose your preference out of 4 options detailed below:

  • Space Fantasy – The Ride
  • Despicable Me Minion Mayhem
  • The Flying Dinosaur

There is an additional Express Pass 4 available at the moment called the Express Pass 4 – Sing on Tour Pass.  It is different to the other passes as it does not include timed entry to Happry Potter World or any rides.  Instead it includes the following four rides:

  • Sing on Tour
  • Despicable Me – Minion Mayhem
  • The Amazing Adventures of Spiderman OR Jurassic Park – The Ride
  • Backdraft OR Terminator 2

Express Pass pricing varies depending on expected crowd levels – after you click through click on the specific date you plan to visit to see the price – avoid weekends and holiday periods to get the best price.  Only a limited number are available each day, and once they run out there are no more available so book early!

Click here to check out and purchase your Universal Studios Japan Express Pass 4 Options through either Voyagin or Klook

The Amazing Adventures of Spiderman
The Amazing Adventures of Spiderman

Universal Studios Japan Express™ Pass 3

The USJ Express Pass 3 – Evangelion XR Ride must be purchased in conjunction with an entry ticket and includes timed skip the line access to the following three ride options, and does not include timed entry to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter:

  • The Flying Dinosaur
  • Space Fantasy – The Ride. 
  • Either Jurassic Park: The Ride OR Jaws OR Backdraft.

Express Pass pricing varies depending on expected crowd levels – after you click through click on the specific date you plan to visit to see the price – avoid weekends and holiday periods to get the best price.  Only a limited number are available each day, and once they run out there are no more available so book early!

Click here to check out and purchase your Universal Studios Japan Express Pass 3 through either Voyagin or Klook

Despicable Me Minion Mayhem
Despicable Me Minion Mayhem

Universal Studios Japan VIP Wristband: Fast-Track Park Entry

The Universal Studios Japan VIP Wristband: Fast-Track Park Entry Pass must be purchased in conjunction with an entry ticket and includes:

  • One Day Studio Pass to Universal Studios Japan
  • A Special Entry line to enter USJ 15 minutes early
  • A secret web link to check the exact opening time on the day before
  • Entry to Harukas 300 Observatory, located in the highest skyscraper in Japan

You must visit the the 16th floor of the Abeno Harukas building to exchange your voucher for your Harukas 300 admission ticket and your Special Entry Wristband. The Special Entry Wristband also comes with a password to advise you of the entry time to the park.

buy a Studio Pass bundled with a VIP wristband through either Voyagin or Klook

Click here to check out and purchase your Universal Studios Japan Studio Pass bundled with a VIP wristband through either Voyagin or Klook

Hollywood Dream - The Ride
Hollywood Dream – The Ride

USJ Special Event Passes and Offers

USJ also offers a great selection of special event passes and offers throughout each year.  Options include Halloween special deals, Christmas shows, New Year’s Eve celebration tickets and many more.

Click here to see Universal Studios Japan Studio special event ticket and Express pass options through Voyagin or Klook.   Use coupon code MDE8G to get a $A5 discount off your first order through Klook! 

How to Get Wizarding World of Harry Potter Osaka Tickets

If you are visiting Universal Studios Japan and do not have an Express Pass which includes a Timed Entry Ticket to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter then you will need to take action early to ensure that you are able to visit the Harry Potter section of the park.  You may like to check out our detailed guide to visiting Harry Potter World at USJ for more detailed information.

Hogwarts School in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter USJ, with the reflection over Black Lake
Hogwarts School in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter USJ, with the reflection over Black Lake

Where is Universal Studios Japan USJ?

A key point is that Universal Studios Japan is NOT in Tokyo!  USJ is located in the outskirts of the city of Osaka, which is located at a distance of 315 miles or 500km west of Tokyo.

What is the Address for Universal Studios Japan USJ?

The address for Universal Studios Japan USJ is 2 Chome-1-3-3 Sakurajima, Konohana Ward, Osaka, Osaka Prefecture 554-0031, Japan

What are the Universal Studios Japan USJ Osaka Opening Hours?

The Universal Studios Japan USJ Osaka opening hours change every day, so it is important to check their schedule.  The schedule typically advises an 8.30am opening time, and closing times which can vary from 7.30pm to 9pm.  USJ typically has longer opening hours on weekends and public holidays.  The rides usually close at 6.30pm.

Note that the exact opening time for each day can be different from that listed on the calendar.  When we visited USJ the website said that it was going to open at 8.30am, we arrived early at 7.30 am and the gates were already open and rides operating.

What is the Universal Studios Japan Osaka Schedule?

Universal Studios Japan has both a daily and a seasonal schedule.  On a daily basis there is a major parade which is usually held at approximately 2.30pm.  In the evenings there are a variety of shows and experiences being conducted – a visit to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter is recommended in the evening.  Note that fireworks are only held in the evening on special occasions, not every day.

When we visited USJ it was Halloween Horror month and the zombies came out at dusk – the acting and costumes were amazing and everyone was having a great time!  If you check out this link, and then click on ‘Stage Shows and Street Shows’ you will see the upcoming seasonal events to help you plan your visit to USJ.

In June and July the park changes theme and during this period most of the shows and parades are not on.  Therefore if you are planning to visit during this period check the schedule carefully and also confirm which rides are operating.

Hagrid's Hut in Wizarding World of Harry Potter USJ
Hagrid’s Hut in Wizarding World of Harry Potter USJ

Universal Studios Japan Crowd Calendar

It is important to understand how big a crowd is likely to be at Universal Studios Japan as it will make a big difference to whether you will need to purchase an Express Pass.  If you can plan your itinerary to visit USJ on a lower crowd day you will save a lot of money!  An overall principle to plan your visit to USJ is that Wednesdays and Thursdays have the smallest crowds.

The crowd calendar at this link provides an indication of expected crowd levels for each day.  The site is in Japanese, however you can use Google Translate as shown in the image below (click the icon in the red circle) to make the information meaningful in English.

Universal Studios Japan USJ Crowd Calendar
Universal Studios Japan USJ Crowd Calendar

It is important to understand the size of the crowd when planning your visit to USJ.  We visited during a peak time and were too late to get an Express Pass.  We arrived very early and went straight to the Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey ride – we were able to get on after a wait of around 20 minutes (by the way it was a great ride!).  We then waited around one hour to go on the Flight of the Hippogriff ride, and after we exited the ride we could see that the queue for the Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey ride now had a 4-5 hour wait…

If you are going to USJ on a mid to high crowd day it will be very worthwhile to purchase an Express Pass, otherwise you will be in long queues all day or miss out on rides. (yes, we need to go back to have a do-over of our USJ visit!)

Hogsmeade Village in Wizarding World of Harry Potter USJ
Hogsmeade Village in Wizarding World of Harry Potter USJ

How to Get to Universal Studios Japan in Osaka

People typically arrive in Osaka at either Shin-Osaka Station, Osaka Station, Namba Station, Nishikujo Station, Nipponbashi Station or Shinsaibashi Station.

From each of these stations you can use the Hyperdia website or Google Maps (see map below) to determine the train schedule and route options.  Add in your departure station (eg. Osaka Station) and your arrival station (Universal City Station).  You should expect to have to change trains 2-3 times to enable your arrival at Universal City Station.  You can use an ICOCA card to tap on and off each train.

USJ has a good graphic which shows the specific trains and travelling time required to get from the Osaka / Kyoto region to Universal City Station – go to the lower section of the webpage to see the better picture.

All the train stations are well labelled in English and easy to navigate with the help of the online tools.

How to Buy Universal Studios Japan USJ Osaka Online Tickets and Express Pass

Other Osaka Attractions

Other attractions you may be interested in visiting in Osaka include the following.  You can also check out a great guide which has been put together by Wanderlust Storytellers about a great range of day trips from Osaka.

You may also like:

Don’t Forget to Book Universal Studios Japan Studio Entry and Express Passes through Voyagin or Klook

Don’t forget to book your Universal Studios Japan Studio Entry and Express passes through Voyagin or Klook.   Use coupon code MDE8G to get a $A5 discount off your first order through Klook! 

Join the Japan Travel Planning Facebook Group

Check out our Japan Travel Planning Facebook Group – you are welcome to join and it is a great resource to enable you to ask questions about your upcoming trip to Japan!

Disclaimer:  This article contains affiliate links.  If you book after clicking on one of these links then we may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you.

 
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