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Universal Studios Hollywood raises gate ticket prices

Diana Li, from left, Bebe Lee and Katie Mitchell enter the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Studios Hollywood on April 7, 2016.
(Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)

About a week after Disneyland raised its ticket prices, Universal Studios Hollywood hiked attendance prices an extra $5 per visitor.

The daily ticket price at the gate rose to $120 from $115, on top of increases adopted last year of up to 20%. Universal Orlando also raised prices over the weekend by up to $5 per ticket.

The new prices are part of what has become almost an annual rite among theme parks: increase prices just before the crush of visitors rushes to the parks for spring break.

In Anaheim, Disneyland on Feb. 12 boosted prices $2 for daily passes to as much as $20 for some multi-day tickets and annual passes.

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Tickets bought online for Universal Studios haven’t changed in price since last year when the park adopted a variable system that charges more for high-demand days.

“Our adjusted ticket pricing is competitive and reflective of our exciting entertainment options,” said Audrey Eig, a Universal Studios Hollywood spokeswoman.

On low-demand days, such as every day in late February and throughout March, the daily online price is $105. In early April, when many schools close for spring break, the online price rises to $115.

Universal Studios said in a statement that “we periodically test pricing offers” in various geographic areas, which explains why residents in some regions of Southern California might open the park’s website and see online tickets for $99 for late February and throughout March.

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Under the testing, the ticket prices may drop to as low as $99 for adults for limited times to gauge the customer response, park officials said. Disneyland officials said they do not conduct such price testing.

Universal Studios Hollywood periodically tests lower prices.
(Universal Studios Hollywood screen grab)

Universal Studios officials note that visitors to the park can enjoy several new attractions, including the Wizarding World of Harry Potter and a haunted maze attraction based on the AMC television series “The Walking Dead.” Both opened last year.

In 2014, the park opened the Despicable Me Minion Mayhem ride, followed in 2015 with the Fast and Furious: Supercharged ride. The park has announced plans to build an expansion with attractions based on popular Nintendo video games.

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hugo.martin@latimes.com

To read more about the travel and tourism industries, follow @hugomartin on Twitter.


UPDATES:

8:30 p.m. Feb. 24: This article was updated to include new information about the price testing conducted by Universal Studios Hollywood.

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This article was originally published at 4 p.m. on Feb. 21.


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