Halloween Horror Nights (HHN) at Universal Orlando is consistently voted “Best Halloween Event” by Amusement Today in their Golden Ticket award. This event is not recommended for children under the age of 13 and costumes and masks are not allowed.
In 2020 Halloween Horror Nights celebrates 30 years with the tagline “30 Years…30 Fears”. It was originally scheduled to run at Universal Studios (not Islands of Adventure) for 40 nights between September 10 and November 1. Actual event night dates were:
- September 10, 11, 12, 13, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 30
- October 1, 2, 3, 4, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31
- November 1
Over the last few years, the number of Halloween Horror Nights has increased year on year with 30 nights in 2015, 33 in 2016, 34 in 2017 and 2018 and then 41 in 2019.
Halloween Horror Nights was cancelled in July 2020 because of the COVID-19 pandemic but in September a reduced attraction, the Halloween Seasonal Experience was offered to daytime visitors as part of the regular admission.
Two of the houses originally planned for HHN 2020 were opened in sound stages at Universal Studios Florida as a socially distanced walkthrough attraction. Both are valid for Universal Express and Universal Express Unlimited passes and as they are open during the day, you do not need a special Halloween Horror Nights ticket to gain admission.
The two houses are open on:
- September 18, 19, 20, 26, 27
- October 3 through to November 1 daily
Halloween Seasonal Experience 2020 Houses
The two houses are:
- Universal Monsters: The Bride of Frankenstein Lives — a sequel to last year’s Universal Monsters house
- Revenge of the Tooth Fairy — set in an old manor house with goblin like tooth fairies
On October 31, a third house opened themed on Beetlejuice
The biggest difference from previous years is that to adhere to social distancing guidelines, guests are only allowed to enter in family groups rather than one continuous line. Team members are located throughout the maze to ensure groups are kept apart and plexiglass screens ensure adequate distancing from the scareactors.
Note that the houses are not recommended for children under the age of 13.
Depending upon capacity, the three houses use the Virtual Line Experience system to book a time slot.
Halloween Seasonal Experience 2020 Trick-or-Treat
For the first time ever, Universal are bringing a little Halloween cheer to Universal’s Islands of Adventure with weekend children’s trick-or-treating at a number of stores with Islands of Adventure Trading Company and Port of Entry Christmas Shoppe at Port of Entry, Comic Book Shop and Marvel Alterniverse Store at Marvel Super Hero Island, Gasoline Alley and Toon Extra at Toon Lagoon, Dinostore at Jurassic Park, Treasures of Poseidon at The Lost Continent, Cats, Hats, & Things and Mulberry Street Store at Seuss Landing.
To take part, children must be 12 or under and look out for the pumpkin stickers to help find your way. Kids can dress up and one free treat bag is provided but each child must be accompanied by an adult.
Adults can also dress up in family-friendly Halloween costumes but cannot wear costume masks, only the normal medical style masks. Full costume guidelines can be found at the Universal Fall 2020 Costume Guidelines web page.
Halloween Seasonal Experience 2020 Scarecrow Stalk
Also new for the revised 2020 HHN is a scavenger hunt, the Scarecrow Stalk, in Universal Studios Florida which operates from September 18 to November 1.
Scattered through the park are 13 scarecrows or skeletons. Anyone can pick up a free map and get it stamped at each location. When you have finished you can collect a trick-or-treat sampler bag at either Studio Sweets in Production Central or the San Francisco Candy Factory in San Francisco.
Prior to the announcement of the Halloween Seasonal Experience, Universal opened their heavily themed Tribute Store near to Revenge of the Mummy, selling a range of Halloween inspired merchandise.
You can even pick up some Halloween goodies at a kiosk in CityWalk near to Voodoo Doughnut.
If you are after Halloween inspired food then you will be pleased to know that Café La Bamba has been themed as a Skeleton Bar with a spooky walkthrough. There are also two food trucks serving food and drinks, one near the Tribute Store and the other near Race Through New York Starring Jimmy Fallon.
In an unprecedented move, Universal has already announced the first house for HHN 2021; called Puppet Theatre: Captive Audience.
The rest of this page is for historical interest and mainly relates to last year’s event
Halloween Horror Night dates for 2020
The attraction opens each night at 6:30 p.m. Closing times vary between 12 midnight and 2 a.m.
It is a separately ticketed event and is not included with regular admission. Note that the normal free parking after 6 p.m. is not available on Halloween Horror Nights.
Special themed ultra-realistic “house” mazes and scare zones “streets” are set up to frighten the guests along with live entertainment. Universal recruit thousands of extra staff called “scareactors” who dress up as mutants, monsters and zombies to roam the darkened streets.
The houses are indoor sets often recreating scenes from horror movies whereas the scare zones and street experiences are outside spaces connecting different areas of the park (and hence easier to escape from if you find the experience too intense).
Halloween Horror Nights is in marked contrast to family-friendly Walt Disney World, SeaWorld and Legoland Halloween celebrations and is not for the faint hearted. If you are an ardent fan of horror movies you will probably “enjoy” it, if that is the right word?
Some children may find some of the attractions too intense. Note that there are no children’s ticket prices and no costumes or masks are allowed. If you arrive in a costume or mask you will be turned away at the gate.
Universal gradually releases information about their Halloween Horror Nights over a period of several months, usually starting in June. Therefore some of the information on the rest of this page still relates to the 2019 event
Halloween Horror Nights 2019 Rides
Some of Universal Studios other attractions remain open during Halloween Horror Nights including:
- Transformers: The Ride-3D
- Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit
- Revenge of the Mummy
- Men in Black Alien Attack
- The Simpsons Ride
- Diagon Alley and Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts
The normal daytime Express Passes and those given to Universal Resort Hotel guests are not valid during Halloween Horror Nights. You need a separate Halloween Horror Nights Express Pass to give you front of line access to the houses and scare zones.
Halloween Horror Nights 2019 Houses and Scare Zones
Each year Universal introduces new haunted house mazes and street scare zones and 2018 will have a record ten houses, five scare zones and at least one live show. The overall theme for HHN 28 is based around 1980 movies.
The first house announced for 2019 is again themed on the Netflix hit series “Stranger Things” and last year’s Killer Clowns from Outer Space scare zone returns as a haunted house this year
The ten houses for 2019 include:
- Stranger Things — based on seasons 2 and 3 of the hit Netflix series, featuring Chief Hopper’s cabin and the Starcourt Mall with snarling Demodogs
- Nightingales: Blood Pit — witness the gladiatorial games in Ancient Rome but beware of the Nightingales
- Universal Monsters — face-off against some of the world’s worst monsters including Dracula, Wolfman, Dr. Frankenstein’s monster, the Creature from the Black Lagoon and the Mummy
- Depths of Fear — underwater adventure as you try to escape infected miners and acidic Mouthbrooders
- Yeti: Terror of the Yukon — enter a logging camp and follow the trail of death and destruction into a labyrinth of caves
- Ghostbusters — relive the original Sony Pictures’s Ghostbusters 1984 film in the New York Public Library and the Temple of Gozer and come face-to-face with Slimer, Gozer the Gozerian and Stay-Putt Marshmallow Man
- Killer Clowns from Outer Space — try to evade capture by baby Klowns, Boco and Klownzilla and you walk through the Klowns’ circus-tent spaceship and the cotton candy store room
- Us — Jordan Peele’s Universal Pictures horror film with the Wilson family beach house, Santa Cruz Pier and dark tunnels where you will meet you own worst enemy
- Graveyard Games — wander through the Ascension Parish Cemetery and confront ghosts who will try to drag you into the graves
- House of 1000 Corpses — based on Rob Zombie’s classic film featuring the Firefly family, Captain Spaulding’s Museum of Monsters and Madmen, Fishboy and the Legend of Doctor Satan
There are the five new Scare Zones/Street areas in 2019:
- Anarch-cade — themed on a 1980s arcade filled with neon slashers
- Rob Zombie: Hellbilly Deluxe — endure the heavy metal music of Rob Zombie
- Vanity Ball — blade wielding artists create human works of art
- Vikings Undead — face undead viking warriors roaming Central Park
- Zombieland: Double Tap — based on the Zombieland film, you find yourself in the middle of a group of infected zombies
Halloween Horror Nights 2019 Shows
Universal has announced that the show from 2016, “Academy of Villains” will return for a fourth year. Academy of Villains: Altered States is shown at the Fear Factor Theater.
In previous years, Halloween Horror Nights had traditionally run two shows; “Bill & Ted’s Excellent Halloween Adventure” which parodied scenes from TV, the movies and pop music and in 2016 there was a new show called “Academy of Villains: House of Fear”.
For 2017 Academy of Villains returned with a new production called “Academy of Villains: Afterlife” but Universal announced that after 26 years, 2017 would be the last year for Bill & Ted as they presented “Bill & Ted’s Excellent Halloween Adventure 2017: The Farewell Tour”.
Bill & Ted’s Excellent Halloween Adventure brought together Bill S. Preston, Esquire and Ted ‘Theodore’ Logan from the original film from 1989 for one last time.
New for 2019 is a new fountain projection Lagoon show called “Halloween Marathon of Mayhem” featuring iconic scenes from some of the top horror films and TV shows including Ghostbusters, Universal Monsters, Killer Klowns from Outer Space and Netflix’s Stranger Things. Show times are at 10 p.m. 11 p.m. and midnight.
Halloween Horror Nights 2019 Scareactor Dining Experience
Also new from 2016 is the Halloween Horror Nights Scareactor Dining Experience at the Classic Monsters Café. You can enjoy an all-you-care-to-eat themed dinner buffet from 5 p.m. plus photo opportunities with Halloween scareactors.
Price is $49.99 per person plus tax on select nights and reservations are required. Dates for 2019 are September 6, 7, 8, 12, 14, 15, 19, 21, 22, 26, 28, 29, October 2, 3, 5, 6, 9, 10, 12, 13, 17, 19, 20, 23, 24, 26, 27, 30 and 31.
Halloween Horror Nights 2019 Ticket Prices
This is a separately ticketed event. Weekend tickets tend to sell out first so it pays to purchase your tickets in advance rather than just turn up at the gate particularly if you are planning on going on a Friday, Saturday or Sunday night.
Ticket prices for a single night at the gate are $119.99 plus tax so it is always cheaper to buy in advance online. There are no child ticket prices as it is not recommended to children under the age of 13.
If you were visiting the park during the daytime then you used to be able to buy an “Add-On” upgrade ticket which gave you Halloween Horror Nights admission on top of your regular daytime admission but this offer seems to have been dropped. Prices vary depending upon the day of the week with Saturday night being the most expensive. You did not have to use your Halloween Horror Nights ticket on the same day as your daytime admission.
If you are planning on making more than one visit then you can buy a variety of Frequent Fear Passes which gives you access on multiple dates, up to all 41 nights in all.
The “Rush of Fear” is the cheapest option and gives you up to 17 nights during the first 3 weeks. The ultimate ticket is the “Ultimate Frequent Fear Plus" which gives you every single night.
Halloween Horror Night Express passes are also available. An Express Pass allows you to bypass the line once on each haunted house and ride/attraction. You can also get a combined Fear Pass and Express Pass.
Florida residents can often get a discount on a single night admission and Annual Passholders can also get discounts depending upon the day of the week.
Unless stated otherwise, all Halloween Horror Night tickets and upgrades also require a regular Halloween Horror Nights admission ticket.
|Halloween Horror Nights Single Admission Advanced Purchase Ticket||Adult|
|Standard single evening admission to Universal’s Halloween Horror Nights at Universal Studios.
Must be purchased online.
|from $67.99 to $93.99|
|Halloween Horror Nights Single Admission Ticket||Adult|
|Standard single evening admission to Universal’s Halloween Horror Nights at Universal Studios.
Gate price is the same for any date.
|Halloween Horror Nights Express Pass|
|Halloween Horror Nights Express Pass allows you to bypass the regular lines at the haunted houses and participating rides and attractions.
Prices vary by date. Valid for one time per attraction.
|from $89.99 to $159.99|
|Rush of Fear Access Pass (advanced purchase)||Adult|
|Visit Halloween Horror Nights multiple times during first three weeks (first 17 nights).
Valid on select nights only between September 6 and 29.
|Rush of Fear Access Pass including Express Pass (advanced purchase)||Adult|
|Visit Halloween Horror Nights multiple times during first three weeks (first 17 nights) and bypass the regular lines at the haunted houses and participating rides and attractions (one visit per house, ride or attraction).
Valid on select nights only between September 6 and 30. Gate price $354.99.
The Rush of Fear Access Passes can be upgraded to an Ultimate Frequent Fear Plus Access Pass on or before September 29.
|Frequent Fear Access Pass (advanced purchase)||Adult|
|Visit Halloween Horror Nights every Sunday through Thursday plus first weekend and last Friday (26 nights).
Valid on select nights only.
|Frequent Fear Access Pass including Express Pass (advanced purchase)||Adult|
|Visit Halloween Horror Nights every Sunday, through Thursday plus first weekend and last Friday (26 nights) and bypass the regular lines at the haunted houses and participating rides and attractions (one visit per house, ride or attraction).
Valid on select nights only. Gate price $394.99.
|Frequent Fear Plus Access Pass (advanced purchase)||Adult|
|Visit Halloween Horror Nights every Sunday through Friday plus the first two nights and last Saturday (34 nights).
Valid on select nights only. Gate price $159.99.
|Frequent Fear Plus Access Pass including Express Pass (advanced purchase)||Adult|
|Visit Halloween Horror Nights every Sunday through Friday plus the first two nights and last Saturday (34 nights) and bypass the regular lines at the haunted houses and participating rides and attractions (one visit per house, ride or attraction).
Valid on select nights only. Gate price $479.99.
|Ultimate Frequent Fear Plus Access Pass (advanced purchase)||Adult|
|Visit Halloween Horror Nights on any night and get complimentary regular parking after 5 p.m.
Valid on all 41 Halloween Horror Nights. Gate price $279.99.
|Ultimate Frequent Fear Plus Access Pass including Express Pass (advanced purchase)||Adult|
|Visit Halloween Horror Nights any night and bypass the regular lines at the haunted houses and participating rides and attractions (one visit per house, ride or attraction).
Valid on all 41 Halloween Horror Nights. Gate price $699.99.
|Halloween Horror Nights R.I.P. Tour||Adult|
|Guided VIP walking tour of Halloween Horror Nights with front-of-line entry to haunted houses. Includes complimentary valet parking, pre-tour reception at Café La Bamba, access to exclusive cash bar locations, reserved seating at select shows and Universal Express Unlimited ride access.
Prices vary by date. Individual parties of up to 6 guests. Private tours also available and required if more than 6 in the party.
|Halloween Horror Nights Behind-the-Screams: Unmasking the Horror Tour||Adult|
|Daytime VIP walking tour of three or six of the haunted houses with the lights on. Tour lasts 2 1/2 to 3 hours for the three house tour and 5 to 6 hours for the six house tour.
Prices vary by date. Theme park and/or Halloween Horror Nights admission tickets are not required.
|from $79.99 (3 houses)|
$129.99 (6 houses)
|Halloween Horror Nights Scareactor Dining Experience||Adult|
|Meet some of the scare actors, take photos and enjoy a dinner buffet including a non-alcoholic beverage at the Classic Monsters Café.||$49.99|
|Florida Residents Halloween Horror Nights Single Admission Ticket||Adult|
|Standard single evening admission to Universal’s Halloween Horror Nights at Universal Studios. Florida ID is required.
Prices vary by date.
|from $67.99 to $91.99|
Halloween Horror Nights 2019 R.I.P. Tours
Universal normally offer VIP tours but for Halloween Horror Nights they had separate R.I.P tours, both private and non-private. R.I.P tours typically take around four hours.
The Non-private Tours include exclusive entrance to Universal Studios Florida, complimentary standard valet parking subject to availability, access to the R.I.P Lounge at Cafe La Bamba with light appetisers and desserts, priority VIP entry to R.I.P Tour haunted houses (one entry per house with the tour guide), reserved seating at selected shows and Universal Express Unlimited™ ride access to all available regular park attractions (excluding haunted houses) at the end of the tour. There are also special cash bars available.
Prices start at $199.99 per person but do not include regular HHN admission tickets. Parties of 7 or more must book a private tour.
The Private Tours are for groups of up to 12 people and include all the same benefits plus the ability to customise your tour. Prices start at $1,599 per group and again do not include regular HHN admission tickets.
There is also a “behind the scenes” tour.
The Behind-the-Screams: Unmasking the Horror Tours take place during the day (morning or afternoon, before the HHN event starts) and give you an overview of the whole event plus a “lights-on” look at either three or six of the haunted houses. Prices for three houses are from $79.99 plus tax in addition to the regular park admission. The six house tour costs from $129.99 plus tax.
Duration is at least two and half hours or five to six hours respectively.
This “upgrade” is during the daytime and actually does not require a regular Universal Studios or a Halloween Horror Nights admission ticket.
Premier and Preferred Annual Passholders can get savings on admission tickets and Frequent Fear passes.
Universal also offers a special “Gory Getaway” packages at both their own on-site resort hotels and partner hotels.
Halloween Horror Nights Past Years
The ten houses for 2018 were:
- Stranger Things — based on season 1 of the hit Netflix series (now in its second season) and face the demogorgon
- Dead Exposure: Patient Zero — set in Paris in 1982 with swarms of flesh-eating undead zombies
- Trick ‘r Treat: Parade Warehouse — based on the Legendary Pictures cult movie featuring Sam
- Slaughter Sinema — 1980’s B movie monsters including alien cannibals, werewolf bikers, beastly babies set in a drive-in movie theatre
- Carnival Graveyard: Rust in Pieces — a house of horrors set in a decaying amusement park
- Seeds of Extinction — hungry flesh eaters hide in wild and lush greenery
- Poltergeist — based on the 1982 film by Steven Spielberg
- The Horrors of Blumhouse — featuring scenes from “Happy Death Day” and “The First Purge”
- Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers — based on the 1988 film, Michael Myers is searching for his niece
- Scary Tales: Deadly Ever After — demented fairytales with the Wicked Witch of the West
The nine houses in 2017 were:
- American Horror Story — returns for a second year and features Season 2: Asylum, Season 3: Coven and Season 6: Roanoke
- The Shining — featuring Room 237 at the Overlook Hotel
- Ash vs. Evil Dead — based on the TV series 1 and 2
- SAW: The Games of Jigsaw — be part of a “trap” featured in the new film
- The Horrors of Blumhouse — combining houses from Sinister, Insidious and The Purge
- Dead Waters — inspired by the 2014 scare zone Bayou of Blood, it includes a voodoo queen, a sunken riverboat and skeletal remains
- The Fallen — infested with flying, jumping and crawling creatures
- The Hive — 1980 horror movie style with vampires
- Scarecrow: The Reaping — an abandoned farmhouse in Nebraska
In 2016, Universal again had nine houses:
- Texas Chain Saw Massacre: Blood Brothers — based on the original film featuring Leatherface
- The Exorcist — based on the film of the same name
- The Walking Dead — back for the fifth consecutive year featuring scenes from all six series including Woodbury, the Terminus, the Prison and Alexandria
- Halloween: Hell Comes To Haddonfield — Michael Myers is alive
- Krampus — St. Nicolas’s evil counterpart and his Dark Minions
- American Horror Story — enter the Murder House, Freak Show and Hotel if you dare
- Lunatics Playground 3D - You Won’t Stand A Chance — a 3D playground featuring Jack’s sidekick Chance
- Ghost Town - The Curse of Lightning Gulch — a treacherous wild west nightmare with thunder and lightning
- Tomb of the Ancients — an ancient evil is unearthed
In 2015, Universal had nine houses:
- Insidious – based on the three Insidious films including the latest Insidious: Chapter 3
- Freddy vs. Jason – meet Freddy Krueger from “A Nightmare on Elm Street” and Jason Voorhees from “Friday the 13th”
- AMC’s The Walking Dead: The Living and the Dead – featuring scenes from Season 5, the burnt ashes of Terminus, the flooded food pantry basement and the darkened churchyard
- An American Werewolf in London – the 1981 horror classic returns (last appeared in 2013)
- The Purge
- Jack Presents: 25 Years of Monsters and Mayhem – relive the last 25 years of Jack the Clown
- RUN: Blood, Sweat and Fears – a brutal assassin TV show
- Asylum in Wonderland 3D – a new Scary Tales episode
- Body Collectors: Recollections – inside the Shadybrook Asylum
In 2014, Universal had eight houses:
- Halloween – John Carpenter’s classic 1978 film comes to life
- The Walking Dead: End of the Line – based on Season 4 of the TV series and returning for a third year. The house includes the cell block, Big Spot supermarket and the Terminus
- AVP: Alien vs. Predator – witness the savage battle between two alien species
- From Dusk Till Dawn – based upon the first series of the TV spin-off of the original film. Takes place in the biker bar
- Dracula Untold - Reign of Blood – the story of Vlad the Impaler
- Dollhouse of the Damned – try to survive the malicious dolls
- Giggles & Gore Inc. – tour an abandoned factory populated by evil clowns
- Roanoke - Cannibal Colony – visit an ancient Virginia colony with a terrible past
In 2013, Universal created eight houses:
- Cabin in the Woods, based on the recent horror film of the same name
- Evil Dead, again based on the recent horror film
- Afterlife: Death’s Vengeance 3D
- An American Werewolf in London, based on the 1981 classic with scenes including the Slaughtered Lamb pub, Piccadilly Circus and werewolves
- Havoc2: Derailed on a speeding train
- Urban Legends: La Llorona featuring a woman who drowned her children
- The Walking Dead: No Safe Haven based on Season 3 of the TV series and returns for a second year. Includes the town of Woodbury, the prison and walkers/zombies.
- Resident Evil: Escape from Raccoon City put you inside the video game and features Lickers, Hunters and Nemesis
A first for 2013 was the idea of theming all the scare zones on just one concept, The Walking Dead: The Undead Streets.
Bill & Ted’s Excellent Halloween Adventure returned along with the “Rocky Horror Picture Show - A Tribute” after a gap of several years.
For 2012, Universal built seven houses:
- AMC’s The Walking Dead - Dead Inside, based on the TV series of the same name
- Welcome to Silent Hill, based on the video game
- Alice Cooper - Welcome to My Nightmare, a maze featuring Steven who appears in many of Alice Coopers songs
- Penn & Teller Newkd Vegas, a maze set in a nuked toxic Las Vegas
- Universal’s House of Horrors, black and white original horror
- Gothic, stone gargoyles come to life at The Catedral de Caementum Animus
- Dead End, the curse at the old Hartford Mansion in Carey, Ohio
The two shows in 2012 were Bill & Ted’s Excellent Halloween Adventure and The 20 Penny Circus.
A new introduction for 2016 was the Repository, a first-of-its-kind immersive psychological experience. It only ran for only one year.
The Repository building was a centuries old warehouse housing mysterious artefacts that were being tested using advanced supernatural and paranormal devices using live actors and virtual reality.
It was a separately ticketed event and reservations were required. Prices were $49.99 plus tax.
Halloween Horror Nights History
Halloween Horror Nights started in 1991 as Fright Nights before being renamed to Halloween Horror Nights the following year. Today the event is celebrated at Universal Orlando, Hollywood in California, Singapore and Japan.
In 2010, Universal Studios celebrated the 20th year of bringing the deepest and darkest nightmares to life with XX: Twenty Years of Fear and for 2011 Halloween Horror Nights 21 you got to meet Lady Luck.
For 2012, Universal Studios Halloween Horror Nights 22 introduced new houses including AMC’s critically acclaimed TV series “The Walking Dead” and the video game franchise “Silent Hill”, all over 24 nights.
In 2013, The Walking Dead returned for a second time over 27 nights. The tag line was “What EVIL Has Taken ROOT?”.
In an unprecedented move, The Walking Dead also appeared in 2014 and then again in 2015 and 2016.
See Universal Orlando Halloween Horror Nights (external site) for further details.