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2020 Universal Studio Japan Guide – Everything You Need To Know

If you’re planning on visiting Universal Studio Japan, then this post is for you.

Universal Studios is one of the best places to go if you are looking for some thrill in your life as well as some fun entertainment.

It’s basically an adult version of Disneyland.

And depending on which Universal Studios you go to, you’ll be able to find unique attractions that can only be found at that particular region.

Because as you know, there is currently 4 Universal Studios located in the world, with 2 more being stated to open in the near future. 2 of the theme parks are located in side the United States, 1 theme park is located in Singapore, and the fourth Universal Studio is located in Osaka, Japan, and will be the main topic of this particular post.

In this post, we’ll be talking about everything there is to know about Universal Studio Japan. Because, I know it can be difficult to understand many things especially since this Universal Studios is located in Japan.

So to make it easier on you and your family, this post will be extremely detailed so that you can get the most of your money on your next Universal Studios Japan Trip.

Are you ready?

Lets start!

Where Is It Located?

Universal Studios Japan is currently located in Osaka, Japan.

The precise location is: 2 Chome-1-33 Sakurajima, Konohana Ward, Osaka, 554-0031, Japan

When Is The Best Time To Visit USJ?

Because Universal Studio Japan is a theme park, you can most likely expect huge crowds anytime of the year.

However there are certain periods where the crowds are less than others.

For instance, weekdays will probably have less traffic then other days as this is a school/work time so the locals won’t be able to come as often.

However if you’re going to factor in tourists and locals together, then the least crowded times will be the months of January and February. However the weather might not be the greatest as it is still pretty cold during this time.

If you want to come when the weather is at it’s best condition, then October through December will be the time to come. However since this is usually when the weather is the best, you can expect huge lines and heavy crowds all throughout the day.

When To Avoid Coming Here

There are definitely certain periods when the crowds are going to be crazy. By this I mean that there is going to be too many people here and it won’t be enjoyable anymore.

For instance, Japan has a few special holidays that you’ll want to take note off to avoid these days. You’ll want to avoid Golden Week which is late April through early May, Obon which is mid August.

Not only that, but you’ll want to keep a look out for any other national holidays as well.

Basically any time there is a holiday, you can expect long lines and huge crowds. So those would probably be the dates you should avoid coming to Universal Studio Japan.

Here is a site that does estimates on which days will be crowded and which days will be not crowded. The site is in Japanese, so if you can’t understand, then try to have the page translated with google.

How To Get To Universal Studios Japan

You should be happy to know that right next to Universal Studios Japan is the Universal City Station. It is literally a 5 minute walk from the station to the theme park.

However getting to the station is kind of a tricky process.

Osaka Station – You’ll want to take the Osaka Loop Line towards Sakurajima which is about 5 stops towards Universal City Station. Or you can board the Osaka Loop Line heading for Nara or Kamo and then stop at Nishikujo Station. From Nishikujo Station, you’ll transfer to JR Sakurajima Line which heads towards Sakurajima. 2 stops and you’ll be at Universal City Station.

JR Namba Station – You’ll want to board the JR Yamatoji Line and ride it for 1 stop to Shinimamiya Station. Then take the Osaka Loop Line to Nishikujo Station. From Nishikujo Station, you’ll transfer to JR Sakurajima Line which heads towards Sakurajima. 2 stops and you’ll be at Universal City Station.

Kansai International Airport – For this route, I definitely recommend taking a bus instead of a train. The bus will take you all the way to Universal Studios Japan and drop you off right in front of it. You’ll want to take the Kansai Airport Limousine Bus from Kansai Airport Bus Stop No. 1. The entire ride should last about 1 hour and 30 minutes.

Where To Stay Near Universal Studios Japan

There are currently 2 hotels that is in walking distance to Universal Studio Japan.

The Park Front Hotel – This hotel is literally right next to the entrance of the park and is the closest hotel to the park.

The Singulari Hotel & Skyspa – This hotel is also near the theme park but is located near the end of the Universal City Station. About a 5 minute walk to the theme park entrance.

How Much Is The USJ Ticket?

Which Ticket Should I Buy?

Universal Studios Japan offers many different types of tickets and this can be quite confusing.

So we will try to explain them as best as we can.

Universal Studio Pass.

First up is the Universal Studio Pass. This is a general ticket that allows you to enter the theme park.

There are 4 different kinds of passes you can choose from.

  • 1-Day Studio Pass – Regular pass
  • 1.5-Day Studio Pass – Allows you to enter the park after 3 p.m. and use it on the following day all-day.
  • 2-Day Studio Pass – 2 day regular pass
  • Royal Studio Pass – Regular pass plus unlimited use of Express access lane to all attractions.

The prices for the 4 tickets are as follows:

TypeAges 12+Ages 4-11
1-Day¥7,800 ~¥5,400 ~
1.5-Day¥12,600 ~¥8,600 ~
2-day¥16,400 ~¥10,600 ~
Royal¥27,000 ~¥24,300 ~

Universal Express Pass

The Universal Express Pass is a separate ticket that enables you to skip the long lines and go directly to the front to ride all the popular attractions.

You can choose from three types of Express Passes:

  • Express Pass 7 – Good for 7 rides
  • Express Pass 4 – Good for 4 rides

If you are unsure about which pass to buy, then you can click here to see all the information you need about the pass.

Where To Buy The Tickets?

There are quite a few different places you can buy your Universal Studios Japan tickets.

And depending on which place you buy it from, prices may be different.

To see the list of all official ticket selling partners, you can click here to find out.

Express or Regular Ticket

Because there is so much for you to see and do, and so little time, it might be hard to fit everything in a single day.

For instance, if you have an express pass, you’ll be able to ride all the rides you ever wanted. Just go in, go out, go back in, go out, and repeat.

It is definitely a huge time saver as you don’t have to wait in those long lines. Some of which can take 2 hours or more just standing in line. Plus, it’ll also allow you to explore the park at your own pace. No more rushing around as you have plenty of time to see and do everything you want.

However, even if you don’t have an express pass, you can still manage to pretty much do everything that the park has to offer.

And I get it, the express pass can be expensive, or you might not be interested in all the rides. Whatever the choice might be, you don’t really need to buy an express pass.

But in my honest opinion, without an express pass, you’ll really be rushed on time, and you might miss out on a lot of different stuff.

Just know that, if you don’t have an express pass, you’ll likely be waiting in line for an hour or 2 for some of the most popular rides. So you might only get a chance to ride them once or twice.

But if you want to go that route, more power to you!

Just be sure to buy your ticket ahead of time and get there before the theme park opens. This allows you to get in as much things as possible.

If you are able to, try to memorize the map of the park, this way you can just head straight to your preferred destination without getting lost.

What Attractions Are Inside Universal Studios Japan

map of universal studios

As you can see from the map, there are currently 9 areas for you to visit.

  • Hollywood
  • New York
  • San Francisco
  • Minion Park
  • Jurassic Park
  • Universal Wonderland
  • Waterworld
  • Amity Village
  • The Wizarding World of Harry Potter

What Rides Are The Best?

As you know, there are quite a few rides at Universal Studios Japan. It will be impossible to tell you which rides are the best as that is highly dependent on each and every person.

However some of the ones that I personally have liked are:

  • Despicable Me: Minion Mayhem
  • The Flying Dinosaur
  • Hollywood Dream – The Ride Backdrop
  • Space Fantasy
  • Wizarding World of Harry Potter
  • The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man
  • JAWS

But to be honest, almost every ride in this park is pretty fun to ride on.

Heck, I even went on the little kids snoopy ride and still had fun.

Common Questions You Might Have

What if it rains when I visit?

Universal Studios Japan will remain open whether it is raining or sun shining.

Plus, you can always bring a raincoat or umbrella with you so that you can stay dry from the rain. Not to mention, some of these you might need since there are several attractions inside that have splash zones where you’ll get wet.

Also, in my opinion, it is actually better to come when it is raining. Mainly because there will be a lot less people attending Universal Studios Japan since they don’t want to get wet.

When I went, it was raining as well and I was able to ride all the rides multiple times because the lines were short.

Do note: If you want to buy a raincoat, buy it from a store before you enter inside USJ. Because once you enter, the price of a raincoat they sell inside is quite a bit expensive.

Can I bring food inside?

Usually for any theme parks, the rule is that you are normally not allowed to bring in any foods inside the park.

However, sometimes the staff might be busy or too lazy to check everyone’s bag, so you might be able to sneak some in.

What is the Refund Policy?

The last time I checked, I don’t think they do refunds. However because your ticket is a QR code, i’m pretty sure you can still transfer it.

Is the park stroller-friendly?

Just like any other theme park in the world, Universal Studios Japan is a very stroller friendly as well as family friendly place.

They even offer rental strollers for a day at a price of about 1,000 yen.

Each attraction will also have a place where you can park your strollers. Plus, you don’t have to worry about it getting stolen because Japan is extremely safe.

Is there any attractions for small kids?

Why yes of course! There are quite a few attractions that many small kids will enjoy.

Located in Universal Wonderland, this place has all the things you need to keep your small kids happy and having fun.

From the snoopy rides to the hello kitty rooms, your small kids will absolutely fall in love with this place.

It also includes some Family Service Facilities where you can feed or breastfeed your babies privately.

Are you able to roam around the entire park in 1 day?

Yes you can! The park is pretty big but not too big. If you ever been to any Disney parks, then you’ll notice that USJ is much smaller in comparison to any Disney theme parks.

However even if it is small in size, it still has quite a bit of things for you to see and do.

I’m estimating that you can probably walk around an entire lap of the park in under 40 minutes.

Is there a birthday discount/promotion?

Yes! Universal Studios Japan definitely has a discount for your birthday. And whats great about it is that the discount works for your entire family.

You can go to the Japanese website of USJ and register your birthday along with your entire family. The discount is 500 yen less than a regular ticket. Not really much, but it adds up if you are going with your family.

The only problem is that the website is in Japanese, so you might have to use google translate or whatever translating software you have to register.


Overall, Universal Studio Japan is a lot of fun. You’ll definitely get your moneys worth if you come here.

There are simply so many rides and attractions for you to see and do that it’ll leave you wanting to come back for more and more.

If you are also interested in a guide about Disney Japan, then click here.

Also, if you are planning to visit Japan anytime soon, you might be interested in some of my other Japan posts.

Or you can check out my complete list of things to do in Japan by clicking here.

Let me know how your trip goes!

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