Is the Go Los Angeles Pass worth it? Go Los Angeles Pass review 2020

MagicMountainThe Go Los Angeles Pass is an interesting and exciting way to save money while visiting the biggest attractions in the city, but it's not ideal for everyone. It covers 35 different attractions that are spread over a great distance within Southern California, and the first thing you might notice is that it does NOT cover Disneyland. However, it does cover almost everything else (including Universal Studios Hollywood), and visiting Disneyland on your own on another day is easy enough.

It's easy to get confused when looking at the list of attractions on the Go Los Angeles Pass website, especially if you've spent little or no time in the area before. So as someone who grew up in Los Angeles and knows all of these places (plus the distances between), I'm going to help you decide whether this pass is good value for you or not.

2020 prices for the Go Los Angeles Pass


  • Adult (13+): $92
  • Child (3-12): $72


  • Adult (13+): $149
  • Child (3-12): $118


  • Adult (13+): $264
  • Child (3-12): $238


  • Adult (13+): $342
  • Child (3-12): $299


  • Adult (13+): $424
  • Child (3-12): $375

Where to buy the Go Los Angeles Pass with our EXCLUSIVE DISCOUNT

>>>Buy the Go Los Angeles Pass at an ADDITIONAL 10% off using this link and the promo code POT10

Look for “Have a promo code?” in your shopping cart and use the code ‘POT10' for the exclusive Price Of Travel 10% discount. Discount expires December 31, 2020. The 10% discount is valid on sale prices, so you save even more.

Top sights and attractions included in the Go Los Angeles Pass

Universal Studios Hollywood – $124.00

A premium attraction available for those who purchase a 3, 5, or 7-day Go Los Angeles Pass, the Universal Studios Hollywood attraction is a fantastic choice for those who would like to go behind the scenes. This attraction offers guests the chance to go on different tours exploring real life film sets. If you love Harry Potter, you'll love visiting The Wizarding World of Harry Potter. Until March of 2017 you could only visit Universal on a weekday, but since then it's now available on weekends as well.

Madame Tussauds Hollywood Tickets – $30.95

An usual attraction that features your favorite celebrities in wax form, Madame Tussauds Hollywood is a great visit for those who like something a little bit different. Located inside, this wax museum features 100 different singers and actors in several different rooms. This attraction is great for both adults and children and can easily take up a few hours of your day.

Warner Bros. Studio Tour Hollywood Tickets – $72.00

A great attraction for those who love movies and shows, the Warner Bros. Studio Tour Hollywood takes you behind the scenes of your favorite shows and movies. With tour guides at your disposable, you'll venture your way through a 110 acre backlot where you may run into some active filming. You'll also get the chance to visit the Prop Department, Picture Car Vault and the Archive.

Aquarium of the Pacific – $34.95

Located on Long Beach, the Aquarium of the Pacific lets you explore exhibits that showcase the wildlife of Southern California and Baja as well as the Northern Pacific and the Tropical Pacific. Great for both adults and children, this highly rated attraction lets you get face to face with birds, ocean predators and much more.

OUE Skyspace LA Ticket – $25.00

Known as the tallest open-air observation deck in Southern California, the OUE Skyspace LA gives you a great view of LA from 1,000 feet above the ground. Highly rated with great reviews, this attraction is one for the record books with 360 degree views of LA, the Gabriel Mountains and the Pacific Ocean. When visiting the Skyspace, make sure to also check out the interactive features available on the 54th floor. Here you'll find a digital topography wall of Los Angeles that's sure to impress.

Knott's Berry Farm Ticket – $64.00

Known as America's first theme park, Knott's Berry Farm is fun for the whole family with rides, dining options, shopping options and none other than the famed boysenberry. The Knott's Berry Farm Marketplace is also on-site and a great way to discover new boysenberry treats, great for both for you and gifts for others. As far as the rides are concerned, you'll find plenty to choose from, including those suitable for little kids, those geared toward the whole family and some fun water rides that are perfect for those hot Southern California days.

Whale Watch By Newport Landing Tickets – $51.50

If you love sea life, you'll love the Whale Watch By Newport Landing attraction. While enjoying the comfort of a 65 foot double deck ship you'll get the exciting chance to view, up close and personal, both whales and dolphins, in an experience like no other. Want the chance to view a 90 foot blue whale or a pod of beautiful and playful dolphins? With over 30 years of experience, your chances of seeing one or the other are pretty high.

LEGOLAND California – $110.99

With more than 60 rides, attractions and shows throughout the park, LEGOLAND is a dream for many, both kids and adults alike. Currently, guests can also see a show of THE LEGO MOVIE in 4D. If you choose to, there is also the LEGOLAND Hotel that you can stay in and you don't want to miss the LEGOLAND water park! Make sure to take note that LEGOLAND is only open daily during Spring Break, summer and certain holidays. The rest of the year, you'll find the park closed on Tuesdays and Wednesdays.


There are over 30 different attractions to choose from with each offering something unique and fun. However, those listed above are some of most popular and highly rated attractions with pass holders and those who live in the area.

Is the Go Los Angeles Pass a good deal? Here's the short answer

UniversalIf you are visiting Los Angeles and intend to visit at least two theme parks as well as a studio tour and perhaps another big attraction or two, then you almost certainly will save money with a Go Los Angeles Pass. If you can get a pass at a discount, it's obviously an even better deal. But, trying to see too many of these things on a short trip would probably be a mistake.

A day that you visit a major theme park is a full sightseeing day, so you shouldn't assume that you'll be able to see something else that day. The good news is that (unlike other passes and passes) you get a full two weeks to use the 1 to 7 days you purchase on the pass. In other words, if you visit Universal Studios on a 3-day Pass, you can spend all day Monday there, then relax at the beach on Tuesday, and start using the pass again on Wednesday. This feature makes it far more useful than if it were only usable on consecutive days like most other passes insist.

The Go Los Angeles Pass covers 35 attractions, but only these big ones matter

The way the Go Los Angeles Pass is priced, you really need to plan to visit one major attraction such as a theme park, or two secondary attractions such as a studio tour, each day in order for it to be good value. A full 16 of the 35 included attractions cost less than $30 each for adults, so it's really only on the 7-Day Pass that it would make sense to visit those cheaper ones.

Los Angeles is so huge and spread-out that even visiting 3 things in one day is a challenge. So you can literally just forget about all the cheaper attractions that are included, because racing between them to try to get your money's worth out of a pass would ruin your trip.

Full-day attractions

Theme parks

  • Universal Studios Hollywood (Only on 3, 5, and 7-Day passes): $124.00
  • Six Flags Magic Mountain: $92.99
  • LEGOLAND® California: $110.99
  • Knott's Berry Farm: $64.00
  • Knott’s Soak City: $53.00 (water park next to Knott's Berry Farm)

Each of the above theme parks should be a full day, except it's easy to visit Knott's and its next-door water park on the same day, although the water park is only open from late May through early September.

Also note that LEGOLAND is about 100 miles (160 km) south of Los Angeles, and it takes about 2 hours to get there by car, or longer if traffic is heavy.

Half-day attractions

Studio tours

  • Warner Bros. VIP Studio Tour: $72.00
  • Sony Pictures Studio Tour: $50.00

General tours

  • Malibu Celebrity Homes Tour: $55.00
  • Hop-on Hop-off Yellow Route: $64.00

Other major attractions

  • Whale Watch by Newport Landing: $51.50
  • Madame Tussaud's Hollywood: $30.95

So will a Go Los Angeles Pass save you money?

KnottsAgain, the best way to look at it is to forget the cheaper attractions the pass covers, and evaluate it just based on the attractions listed above. Also, keep in mind that you can use these passes on non-consecutive days, so you could skip days in between to just relax or see other sights, or even go to Disneyland.

It's easy to do the math this way. The most popular version of the Go Los Angeles Pass is the 3-day version, which is also the shortest one that includes Universal Studios. So you could go to Universal Studios on one day, and to Six Flags Magic Mountain on another day, and do a Hollywood tour and a movie studio tour on a third day. On an itinerary like this, you will definitely save money with the pass, and even more money if you buy it with one of the frequent discounts that are offered.

How NOT to try to use a Go Los Angeles Pass

Until you've actually visited Los Angeles, it's impossible to imagine just how spread out it is. There is no other city like it on the planet. For this reason, it's important to pace yourself properly. In New York City or London or Paris, it's possible to visit 3 or even 4 attractions in one day because so many of them are only a few minutes apart on foot. But in Los Angeles, nothing is close.

So if you are a cheapskate like myself you might think you'll get the most use out of a pass by buying one for a limited number of days and trying to jam as many sights into those days as possible. But if you tried it, you'd almost certainly regret it.

Also keep in mind that all the theme parks offer unlimited rides and shows once you are inside, so if you leave after half a day, you are missing out on some fun. All of them are large enough that it would take several days in order to ride all the rides and see all the shows.

Build your own custom Go Los Angeles Pass

An interesting feature with this pass is that they allow you to actually choose your own group of the 35 attractions and pay only for those. You can even choose just a single attraction (except Universal Studios) and pay only for that. They guarantee that you'll save money off the normal admission price, although they don't publish their own prices for the custom passes.

Most people will probably get the best value out of the normal pass, but it could be worth looking into the custom pricing plan to see if it's an even better deal.

Where do you purchase your Go Los Angeles Pass

If you think the Go Los Angeles Pass is a good choice for you and your group, you can buy one from the link below. You can also choose instant delivery of a pass that you can print out, or store on a smart phone in their app, so delivery is instant and free.

>>>Buy the Go Los Angeles Pass at an ADDITIONAL 10% off using this link and the promo code POT10

Look for “Have a promo code?” in your shopping cart and use the code ‘POT10' for the exclusive Price Of Travel 10% discount. Discount expires December 31, 2020. The 10% discount is valid on sale prices, so you save even more.

Similar Go Passes to consider

Photo credits: Universal Studios by on Flickr, Magic Mountain and Knott's Berry Farm by Edward Beavers on Flickr

172 Responses to “Is the Go Los Angeles Pass worth it? Go Los Angeles Pass review 2020”

moochi says:

I don’t know why no one has commented on this yet but THIS IS AWESOME. You gave me a lot of good insight into buying the GO card or not. Thanks.

Minh D says:

We’ve just arrived at Los Angeles and considering the Go card, this analysis is so helpful, thank you very much

Nick B says:

We are visiting CA for 6 weeks and plan to spend the first 4-5 days in LA, perhaps Hollywood area. I think Warner and Universal would be enough for us and so we thought we would customise our Go card for these. Can I just confirm two things – whether getting 20 or 55% discount, do you pay any more for entry over the Go price when you reach the attractions? Lastly, would the Hop-On buses be a viable alternative to a car, as we plan only to get a car when we head north. Thanks and sorry for the daft questions

    Roger Wade says:

    Nick B,

    Yes, the Go Cards are good for the full admission to each included attraction. You might have to pay for parking at some places, but otherwise the card is good for entry with no other fees.

    And those hop-on, hop-off bus tours are very good for sightseeing, but they are poor for transportation. You might have to wait up to an hour for a bus to come along, and then it could take another hour to reach your next stop because they purposely go slow and stop frequently. So if you did use it as transport, you’d have less time to use the other attractions the card is good for.

    I grew up in Los Angeles and unfortunately it’s a place where having your own wheels make a HUGE difference in getting around. Renting a car is like having a key to the city, although you can expect traffic at times, just as the city is famous for. Good luck, and feel free to ask any other questions if you have them. -Roger

      Nick B says:

      Hi Roger – thanks again for a great article and a very helpful reply to my questions. As far as traffic goes, I was raised in London, so I can sympathise! One week to go and we are already so excited for our first trip to California. Best wishes.

Michele says:

I am from NY and we have public transportation. Does LA have subways to get to major attractions or do I need to rent a car?

    Roger Wade says:


    Los Angeles does have some public transportation, but the area is so spread out that it’s very inefficient for sightseeing. And most of the key attractions (Universal Studios etc) are far from the main transport routes. I hate to say it, but you’ll have a much better visit with a rental car. Have a great trip. -Roger

francesca says:

I have looked into this card and for me personally, I think it’s brilliant! 1000x yes, go with the card!

Ray C says:

Major point that is missed here is that card works until 5:30pm, once you are in by them, you in, So I bought the 3 day card, in the mornings we will hit a studio tour and a museum, then be in universal by 5:30 each day, one of those days we will go to six flags instead of universal, so we should hit both studio tours, 4-6 other museum like attractions, and spend each night in a theme park all for $190 each. This card is a great value if you can stick to the plan!

Michelle says:

Question — with the Los Angeles Go Card — It states that the 3, 5 & 7 day Go card come with Free Universal Hollywood tickets … what about the 4 day Go card? 3 days is not enough, but 5 is too many!? Also, does the Universal Hollywood ticket usage count towards your 3/4/5/7 day limit … or is it an added bonus on top of your Go Card purchased days? Also, we’ll have a 11 month old with us, do you think its worth it because a lot of the attractions are not really baby-friendly (tho we also have a 13 yr old and a 10 yr old).

    Roger Wade says:


    They offered a 4-day Go Los Angeles Card not long ago, but I guess they got rid of it because it wasn’t as popular as the others. I also wish they still offered it, and maybe they will again.

    The Universal Hollywood ticket needs to be used on one of the valid days of your pass, unfortunately. And while your 11-month old certainly won’t get much out of the attractions, it should be helpful to know that all of the included attractions are extremely infant friendly, and obviously you don’t pay for anyone under 3. If the little one can put up with it I’m sure the older ones will appreciate that because it’s a pretty good deal in general. Have a great trip. -Roger

fred says:

Hi Roger,
Great insight,thanks.
We are coming from Toronto, about August 10th, via San Diego from New Orleans. Is Legoland down that way? Of course we are looking at attending Universal, but in your knowledgeable opinion, is it a better option to do the two Knott’s attractions as opposed to 6 flags?
thanks in advance.

    Roger Wade says:


    Yes, Legoland is only about 50 kilometers north of San Diego Airport so it’ll be easy to reach. Knott’s is about 160 kilometers north of San Diego, and there is a big chunk of that where there is almost never any traffic so it’s also pretty easy to reach. Six Flags Magic Mountain is about 240 kilometers north of San Diego and you literally have to drive through all of the most (traffic) crowded parts of Los Angeles to get there. So for that reason alone I’d go for the Knott’s attractions. And people say that Six Flags hasn’t been updated like the other parks have lately, so it’s fading a bit in popularity.

    Universal is easier to reach because it’s in the middle of Los Angeles rather than way north of Los Angeles, and it’s obviously a world-class attraction. If you can time that drive right I’m sure you’d love it. Best of luck with however it works out for you. -Roger

Lisa says:

Do you know if we purchase the 3, 5 or 7 day Go cards if we can use them for 2 of the days at Universal Studios or is it just one time?

    Roger Wade says:


    According to the official website, you can visit Universal Studios Hollywood up to 3 times with your 3, 5, or 7-day pass. Have a great trip. -Roger

michelle says:

Hi, is the entrance into the 6 Flags Magic Mountain included in the Go Los Angeles Card? I am a bit confused by the VIP line privilege stuff. Thank you 🙂

    Roger Wade says:


    Yes, the Go Los Angeles card does include entry to Six Flags Magic Mountain. It also includes “VIP Line Privileges” which means that you can skip the ticket-buying queue out front and go right to the entry queue. So it will save you time, but it’s not like a Fast Pass where you skip the queues for the rides once inside. Those cost a fortune.

    And for the record, I agree that the VIP thing is confusing on their website so I called them to point out that it’s not really explained properly anywhere. Have a great trip. -Roger

Grant H says:


If we were to get the GO cards can we still pre book the studio tours etc?

apologies for the dumb Q..

    Roger Wade says:


    It’s not a dumb question, but I don’t think you need to “pre-book” the studio tours. Pretty much all of the Go Los Angeles Card attractions are ongoing, so you just show up and go in. If you were referring to something else or something specific, please let me know. -Roger

Sam Sing says:


We will be staying in Torrance on the week of March 14, 2016. Just would like to know how we should plan our days if we buy 4 days card to see Legoland, Universal Studio, Knott Berry Farm and some other activities available on card. We have 10, 14 and 16 years old kids.
Thanks, Sam

    Roger Wade says:


    Legoland, Universal Studios, and Knott’s Berry Farm are all fairly far apart and they are basically all-day activities so I’d dedicate a full day to each of them. On the 4th day you can hit several of the non-theme-park attractions that are mostly in or near Hollywood. If you plan well and start early you can hit at least 3 or 4 different things on that one day. You might want to put that Hollywood day in the middle, so you aren’t doing theme parks 3 straight days. As for which attractions to visit, that’s really a personal decision, but pretty much all of them are worthwhile for some people. Have a great trip. -Roger

Nicola says:

Hi there,

I’m looking into buying the 3 day pass as I will be going to Universal Studios. Do you know whether you are able to upgrade the Go Card entry ticket to the front of line ticket by paying the difference in price?
Thanks- Nicola

    Roger Wade says:


    That’s an interesting question and I don’t know the answer. You are probably best off calling them to find out. The website says: Please feel free to call us at (866) 652‑3053 and we’ll be happy to help you!

    Best of luck. -Roger

    Lisa says:

    Hi Nicola,
    Were you ever able to find out the answer to your question? I was wondering the same thing! We are going in mid-April and I am thinking we will probably need a front of the line upgrade since Harry Potter is opening the week before!

      Roger Wade says:


      I looked into it more and Universal Studios says that Season Pass holders and those already with individual tickets CAN upgrade to the Front of Line Pass at the front gate for the upgrade fee. So my best guess is that it IS possible to upgrade with the Go Los Angeles Card as well. However, they mention that they have limited availability on the FOL passes, and I’d guess that they’d sell out in advance in the weeks right after the new Harry Potter thing opened.

      I’d still call Universal to check, and please let us know if you find out. Thanks and good luck. -Roger

catherine says:

We only have time for 1 day pass. I think we will try to do Warner Bros studio tour and then hit Santa Monica for pier and bike rental. Do you know what time of day the pass starts and ends? thanks

    Roger Wade says:


    The Go Los Angeles Card basically goes from midnight to midnight, so it’s really just whatever the opening hours are of each place.

    The Warner Brothers Studio Tour only takes about 3 hours (because it’s a studio tour and not a theme park like others on the list), so if you reserve and early time for your tour, hopefully around 10am, you’ll be out by 1pm for lunch. The Santa Monica Pier is only 22 miles (35 KM) away and at that time of day you should be able to make it in under an hour because it’s freeway pretty much the whole way. You’d have time to do another attraction or two on your way to the Pier, and still get there before sunset for a bike ride and all that.

    Let me know if you have any other questions. I grew up in Los Angeles and I enjoy helping people explore it. -Roger

Leo says:

Hi Roger! Thanks for all the help you provide reg the city and the pass. We are visiting LA in July from Argentina! and we plan to buy the 3 days pass. We were thinking to follow this schedule if you can give us any advice I would really appreciate. 1st day: Universal 2nd day: Warner Bros studio tour, madame tussauds and sony studio tour, 3rd day: Legoland on our way to San Diego. Do u think second day is possible? Thanks!!!

    Roger Wade says:


    As always, I’m happy to help if I can. I think your plan sounds great. Your Day 2 plan should be quite easy to do as long as you make reservations for both studio tours about 5 or 6 hours apart. That will give you enough time to reach Madame Tussaud’s and spend 90 to 120 minutes inside on your way to the other studio. Traffic is always an issue in Los Angeles, but those three Day 2 attractions aren’t so far apart that it would be a problem.

    So after you buy the Go LA Card, make a reservation for one studio tour as early as possible, hopefully 9am or 10am if you can. You’ll be done there 2 or 3 hours later and you should have time to reach Madame Tussaud’s and spend 2 hours there and still make it to the other studio at 3pm or 4pm for your reservation. If they can do later reservations, it might be better to do that so you’ll have time for a relaxed lunch as well. Have a great trip and let me know if you have other questions. -Roger

      Liana says:

      Hi Roger,
      We are travelling from Australia with our three children and are hoping to get advice on the best way to use our 3 day go card. We obviously want to maximise our time seeing only the relevant well worth attractions. We are interested in seeing Warner brother studio, Hollywood homes, Malibu homes, Madame Tussauds and universal studios. We are hiring a car whilst there so should we use our own transport visiting the Hollywood homes or do you think it’s better to do this as part of the tour? Where does the hop on hop off tour include? Is it best to book the studio tour and hollywood homes tour in advance or can we do this once we arrive in the US? Do they only run these tours on specific days we arrive on the 17th of March until the 20th of March.

        Roger Wade says:


        I’ll try to answer your questions in the order they came up…

        As long as you are doing the Go Los Angeles Card then I’d definitely do the Hollywood homes tour they offer rather than do it yourself. There are people selling maps of “celebrity homes” but they are famously out of date and mostly include obscure stars that you’ve never heard of. It’s pretty much impossible to really find celebrity homes on your own, and the stress of driving around looking makes it worse. Also, I’m not sure about the Malibu Homes tour in general. The thing is, Malibu is a long way from Hollywood (about an hour or more in traffic), and all of the homes look extremely plain from the road. You really have to view the homes from the beach to see anything special at all, and I doubt the tour allows that.

        The hop-on, hop-off tour includes the main highlights from Los Angeles’ “West Side” which is where the most desirable housing is located. Looking at the list of the places they go, it looks like a very entertaining route, and one that driving yourself would be a hassle.

        I’m not sure how far in advance you have to book those tours that require reservations. It looks like they go almost every day of the year, and March isn’t really the high season, so I’d think you can reserve once you arrive. But I can’t be sure of that so hopefully you can get confirmation somewhere else. Have a great trip. -Roger

Leo says:

Thanks for your reply Roger! Now we are considering using the 2 weeks availability so we can relax in between but a new question arised. Let´s say that we want to use our first day on TUESDAY THE 5TH OF JULY and we want to use our last day on TUESDAY 19th of july, do you think that is possible? It is 2 weeks but 15 days so Im not sure… THANKS!!!

    Roger Wade says:


    The official site says the days are good “within a two-week period” so I’m pretty sure if you started on a Tuesday then your last possible day would be two Mondays later. If they allow an extra day, you’d have to check with them. Have a great trip and I hope it all works out. -Roger

Joe a says:

I visited LA mid-February and used the Go LA pass. It was a great value. We purchased the 5 day pass and were able to utilize it for the major attractions. We spent 1 day in six flags, got tired of the thrill rides and took a ride to Santa Monica pier and used the pass there as well. The next day we went to Universal. We booked some studio tours and spent the next couple of days touring and jumping on the hollywood homes tour. We spent the day on Hollywood blvd and visited Madame Tussauds, the Hollywood museum. Be sure not to skip the walking tour on the blvd. It is extremely informational. We wouldnt change a thing. Universal studios is much smaller than the one in Florida so you should skip the front of the line passes as you can do the entire park beforemit gets dark. We got there at 10AM and we were done by 3pm. This is with the fast and furious ride breaking down. Harry potter was not yet opened but we already experienced it when visiting Universal Orlando so we wouldve skipped the attraction anyway. Defintely purchase the go passand save some $$$ for Disney. A 2 day non-park hopper ticket will set a family of 4 back $800.

Meike says:

Hi, off topic, but I’m just wondering if you have any insider info as to where to buy cheap authentic Disneyland ticket?

Also, to make the most of the visit to LA/Hollywood area, where should one take a stay on (hotel/AirBnB wise) to be more in middle of all of them in these Go Card attractions? Thanks beforehand!

    Roger Wade says:


    Disneyland is famous for keeping a very tight control on any discounted tickets. Local groups based in Southern California can get discounts when they buy, say, 20 or more tickets, but I’m not aware of any discounts available for small groups of tourists. It’s a shame because the park is so expensive and every other attraction seems to offer some sort of discount. But if you go, you won’t regret it. They do an amazing job there.

    As far as where to stay, Los Angeles is a bit tricky because you’ll need a car pretty much no matter where you stay if you want to see the most interesting things. Whether you drive 90 minutes in a day, or 110 minutes in a day to see everything, it won’t make much of a difference. So instead I advise people to stay in a central neighborhood that you’ll feel comfortable in and has good food and entertainment options. With that in mind, I’d recommend finding a place in or near the city of West Hollywood, which is between Hollywood and Beverly Hills. Hollywood itself is a bit shabby, and Beverly Hills is insanely expensive. Westwood is another good neighborhood in that same area.

    If all of those places seem too expensive for what you get, you might be best off staying in Studio City or Burbank, which are both just over the hill from Hollywood. Have a great trip. -Roger

Ginger says:

Hi, I’ve read through all the comments! Thank you Roger! this has been a most informative post! One question. How do you go about making a reservation for the WB studio tour? Does one have to call or are you able to do this through the website?

Thanks again! trip is in 2 weeks!!

    Roger Wade says:


    Always happy to hear that this information helps. As far as the Warner Brothers Studio Tour, it appears that you need to call the phone number provided – (877) 492-8687 – to make that reservation. It’s a toll-free phone call if you are in the United States or Canada, which means that it’s free over Skype if you are anywhere else in the world. Have a great trip. -Roger

Min says:

Hell Roger,
Do you have any recommendation for a plan to best use of the card? I mean a doable plan for the three days card

    Roger Wade says:


    I’ll be happy to try to help, but it’s tough to confidently recommend activities without knowing your tastes and such. I will try to give you a bit of advice though.

    If you are doing a 3-day Go Los Angeles Card you’ll definitely want to allow a full day at Universal Studios, which is already a US$105 value. It’s a large park with more activities than anyone can do in one day, so most people arrive in the morning and then leave around dinner time. There are a couple things you might also do in the evening if you left early enough and they are on your way, but I’d probably just target the park for the full day.

    Assuming you are traveling with kids, you might devote another full day to Knott’s Berry Farm or Magic Mountain, which are also both large and elaborate theme parks. You might do Universal on Day 1 and the other park on Day 3, so the thrills are spaced out a bit. And again, you could potentially do another thing in the morning or early evening, but most people just stay all day in the park.

    On the middle day you can do at least 2 or 3 of the rest of the activities that appeal to you. Most of the rest are in or near Hollywood, and they only take 2 or 3 hours each, so doing 3 in a day is pretty easy as long as you plan things out a bit. Madame Tussauds is surprisingly entertaining, and there is also the Warner Brothers Studio Tour (you have to reserve that on the phone in advance). The hop-on, hop-off bus tour is interesting because it connects all the major sights without having to worry about parking and all the traffic yourself.

    The Hollywood Movie Star Homes tour is interesting to some people, but not everyone. The thing about it is, most of the homes that they point out are former homes of big stars, or current homes of lesser stars, and you probably won’t see any stars. However, they can be really fun for seeing mansions and the most glamorous neighborhoods near Hollywood. Let me know if you have any other questions. -Roger

      Min says:

      Thanks for your prompt reply Roger,
      I am coming only with my wife, and I defiantly agree that we need to go to universal for the whole day and then nearby restaurants.

      For the second day, do I need to use three different parking to go to Madame Tussauds, Warner Brothers Studio Tour and Hop-on hop-off

      For the third day, we think about six flags, do you think we can combine it with Whale Watch by Newport Landing and the aquarium of the pacific?

      Another question please, can we find cheaper parking near the amenities or we have to use their expensive parking

      Really appreciate your help and support

      Best regards

        Roger Wade says:


        Yes, you’d have to park 3 times on that day, but none of the parking lots should be too expensive. And for the HOHO bus, you might even be able to find a free parking spot near one of the stops.

        Unfortunately, Six Flags Magic Mountain is about 30 miles northwest of Hollywood, and Newport Landing is about 40 miles southeast, so you wouldn’t want to try those on the same day. Knott’s Berry Farm is in the same direction as Newport Landing, and the Long Beach Whale Watch or Harbor Cruise is on the way to Knott’s. Knott’s has fewer thrill rides, but it has plenty of them still, and it’s more interesting overall compared to Magic Mountain. I grew up close to it and I’ve been there at least 15 times. There are quite a few other attractions in that same area south of Downtown LA, so it will be easy to find a few to combine in one day if you go down the list a bit.

        For something like Universal or the other theme parks, you really have to park in their lot. The parks are so large that you’d have to park at least a mile away to park outside of the park, and you might not even save any money. But for something like Madame Tussaud’s, there are many smaller and cheaper parking lots within a few blocks. Generally speaking, parking in Los Angeles isn’t too expensive because everyone drives and there are lots all over. You might be paying about US$8 to park for the afternoon, or something like that. It’s annoying, but there is no good way around it, and you’ll have a better time if you just do it the convenient way. And compared to the total cost of your holiday, it doesn’t add up to much. Have a great trip. -Roger

Lou says:

Hello Roger

Actually i have the same thoughts of Min, please advise if i can do Madame Tussauds in the early morning before universal studios??
Also you think i can do both knotts berry farm and knott soak city water park on the same day??
And if you can also advise what can be done on the same day with warner bros studio and hop on hop off but not hollywood home tour?

Thanks in advance
I really appreciate your kind support for everyone

    Roger Wade says:


    It would be quite a busy day, but you could definitely do Madame Tussauds, which opens at 10am, in the morning, and then Universal Studios, which is open until 10pm or 11pm in summer, after that on the same day. Madame Tussauds is really impressive and fun, but you’ll have seen it all in 90 minutes or so. And Universal does have some rides, but it’s more of a park where you go see the stunt shows and so forth, and you can easily see all of those if you get there by 1pm.

    And it would also be quite easy to do the 2 Knott’s parks on the same day, as long as you are going by August 18 or so, after which the Berry Farm cuts its opening hours back a bit. So if you are going before then, you could spend 2 or 3 hours in the morning in Soak City, and then change back into your normal clothes to go next door for the main park, and spend at least 6 or 7 hours there, which is enough time to ride all the rides.

    With the Warner Brothers Studio Tour and HOHO Bus, you could also do the OUE Skyspace LA Observation Deck in Downtown LA, or the Sony Pictures Studio Tour (if you could get a reservation at the right time), and/or the Hollywood Museum, or even the mountain-bike rental in Santa Monica. Have a great trip. -Roger

Liza says:

Hello Roger

Sorry ihave another question; do you think legoland in just for kids? As i will be coming onlyme and my husband alne for our anniversary; we are in our late twenties. Legoland seems interesting but we are doubting that is maniky for kids

Thanks again for your help and support

    Roger Wade says:


    My understanding is that Legoland is most popular among families with younger children. People rave about it so I’m sure anyone would be able to appreciate what they’ve done there, but I don’t think I’d recommend it to people in their twenties. Also, it’s a LONG way south of every other attraction, actually closer to San Diego than Los Angeles, so it requires a long time on the road there and back. -Roger

Laura says:

I’ll be in L.A on December, I’m atying for 42 days…. the thing i that I’m 20 years old , I’ll be traveling alone and I don’t have enough money to rent a car and I don’t even have a drive license but I wanna go to the studios and things like that … what should I do?

    Roger Wade says:


    This is a tough one. I understand your situation. I grew up in LA and partly because all of the driving, I’ve lived in places where I don’t need a car for the last 13 years (currently in London). Los Angeles does have public buses, although those get caught up in traffic as well. And there is the subway system, which has been expanded again recently and is now somewhat useful to tourists.

    I think my advice would be to find a hotel or hostel close to one of the subway stops. Hollywood is the most central location on the subway lines, as that will allow you to get Downtown, to Universal City, and to the West Side (Santa Monica, Westwood etc) all on the subway. Most of that was built since I last lived there 13 years ago (although I still visit often), and it looks like you can get around pretty efficiently on the subway now.

    In some cases you’ll probably want to spring for an Uber to get to places that aren’t close to the subway line. They are fairly cheap in LA, and even if you end up taking 2 short Ubers per day and a daily subway pass, it’ll probably be cheaper than renting a car and paying for gas. And you’ll save $10 or $20 per day on parking as well. The only real downside is that it might take you an hour to reach something that could have been reached in 20 or 30 minutes by car. But again, you won’t have to worry about parking, so you’ll regain some of that time.

    If you allow yourself, say, $30 per day on Ubers, you’ll be able to go to all of the main places between Santa Monica, Hollywood, Downtown, and the studio area in and near Burbank. Let me know if you have any other questions. -Roger

Marianna says:

Hi Roger,

We are heading to LA in Sept and will be there for 9 nights. Im looking at gstting a 3 day gocard and want to do universal studios, knotts berry and warner bros / madame tassauds / and either hoho tour or santa monica pier. Can u tell me if it is better to purchase the card online from here in australia or purchase it when we get there? Also what time does universal studios close, and as we are staying in anaheim for the whole time is public transport into downtown la easy enough to navigate? Any advice would be greatly appreciated!

    Roger Wade says:


    You’ll want to buy the Go Los Angeles Card online, as it’s not available any other way. Fortunately, unlike many other passes and city cards, you can download your pass to your smartphone and use it that way, so you don’t need anything shipped to you.

    Universal Studios closes at different times on different days, and it’s sort of unpredictable. Check the website for hours and you can plan on one of the later days (9pm to 11pm) if you need to.

    There is a train from Anaheim to Union Station in Downtown Los Angeles, but the last one going in that direction leaves at 9:16am and then not another one until 4:39pm. The journey takes 48 minutes so it’s not bad. These are only commuter trains, unfortunately, so they only operate in the morning and then again in the afternoon. If that works for you, you’ll be fine. There are also buses and shuttle vans, although those can and usually do get caught in traffic. Most tourists drive, and it should be surprisingly easy if you want to give it a try. I’m from Los Angeles and I rented a car in downtown Melbourne to drive up to the Great Ocean Road and then down to the Blue Mountains and Sydney. Driving on the other side was a bit stressful at first, especially in downtown Melbourne, but then it got easy. Driving from Anaheim to Los Angeles will be even easier, as there are freeways everywhere and you can just pick a lane and stay in it. Let me know if you have any questions. -Roger

Marianna says:

Hi Roger,
Thanks for your earlier response…..just one more question! Do the LA GoCard attractions include front of line access or are they just general admission tickets?

    Roger Wade says:


    Only a few of the included attractions allow you to skip the main ticket line, but fortunately that isn’t really a big issue at most places. The theme parks and those sorts of attractions have many ticket windows in order to process everyone quickly, so you shouldn’t have to wait more than maybe 10 minutes at almost any of them. Have a great trip. -Roger

Ann says:

Roger, great info. Can you purchase the additional front of the line access ticket at Universal Studios if I buy the inclusive Go Card?

Thanks, Ann

    Roger Wade says:


    I believe you can buy the Front of Line access as an add-on once you get to the park, but I’m not 100% sure. You might want to call Universal to check for sure. Have a great trip. -Roger

Kaye says:

Hi Roger, my family (2 adults and 2 children) will be going to LA in Feb 2017 and I’ve been so overwhelmed with information available on the Internet. We will be staying in LA for 5days and after spending months on our itinerary, I only came across this today and it’s been the most helpful. Thank you so much!

    Roger Wade says:


    Thank you for taking the time to comment. And let me know if you have any other questions. As I grew up in Los Angeles and am still very proud of it, I’m happy to try to help. -Roger

Kelly says:

Hi Roger,

Thank you for providing such valuable information on the Go Card. I’ll be visiting for a week and will probably buy the 3 or 5 day pass. Plus, I’ll rent a car and map every location to be as time efficient as possible.

Question: Is there some catch to this pass? I’m looking at the cost of admission for some of these places and the pass (even for 3 days) is only $199 per person. Are there any charges on top of admission into the gate? Or am I really getting all these tours and boats rides for the price of the pass?

Your help is greatly appreciated!

    Roger Wade says:


    From everything I’ve heard, there are no other charges aside from what is on the website, and it’s all legit. I know what you mean about it seeming a bit too good to be true, but it’s the real deal. The included attractions know that they can draw extra people with passes like this, and in most cases there is no extra cost to them. For example, on weekdays, Universal Studios Hollywood never gets overly crowded, so by being part of the Go Card they accept a lower payment from the card company and the visitors go on weekdays rather than the too-crowded weekends.

    These kinds of cards operate in nearly every tourist city in the US and around the world, so the business model works for both sides. And to be perfectly honest, the average person buying a card or pass usually won’t be able to go to all of the places they hope they could. This way, the card and the attractions guarantee a reduced amount up front, and in the end it makes them more money than if they weren’t involved at all.

    And again, many of the attractions have no additional marginal cost per extra visitor because they rarely sell out. So many people go to a place like Madame Tussauds when they wouldn’t have gone otherwise. And Madame Tussauds gets some money for each person who uses the card, and some of those people buy a t-shirt or lunch, so they are better off.

    Let me know if you have any other questions. -Roger

Wilgert says:

Hi Roger,

We are doing a 2 week roadtrip through California, Arizona and Utah in May 2017 and found out about the Go LA Card a couple of days ago.

Your post was very helpfull and we are taking a 3-day pass and will use most of your 3 day itinerary.

Thank you so much for your information.

The Netherlands

Gals Portal says:

Hi…. we are planning to come to LA in Nov..
Planning to get the 3 day card.
1 day universal.
2nd day morning,
At abt 9/10am whale watching,
Then join the studio tour in the afternoon & try to enter
6 flags by 5pm so that we can stay abt 8 to 9pm..
Is this a feasible plan??

    Roger Wade says:


    The San Pedro whale watching is close enough that it could work in the morning. Then as long as you can make it to one of the studio tours (Warner Brothers or Sony Pictures) at one of the scheduled times, you could make it to Six Flags in the evening. The main challenge will be that traffic to Six Flags is bad starting in the late afternoon every day. So if you go to the Warner Brothers Tour, which is halfway to Six Flags, it would be easier. But it could still take over an hour to get to Six Flags at that hour. So it’s not an ideal itinerary, but it could be done. Let me know if you have any other questions. -Roger

Eliza Dudas says:

Hi, it may seems like a dumb question but I’m not from the states, so I don’t know for sure if the prices near the sights are what I have to pay for each attraction or after I buy the Los Angeles go card every sight on the list will be free?
Looking Forward to your answer anytime soon!

    Roger Wade says:


    It’s not a dumb question. The prices listed are the regular walk-up prices for each attraction, and they are all free if you have a Go Los Angeles Card. Have a great trip. -Roger

Nietje says:


I have a small budget, the Go Los Angeles Card will save me money, but the parking fees is killing my budget. Public transport is not the solution, I will loss too much time. Do you have some advise to save on parking fees.
And another question. To use the card you have to be inside an attraction before 5:30pm? Is this true and is this for all attractions

    Roger Wade says:


    Parking fees obvious vary from one attraction to another, but you are right that they can be annoying and can add up. For theme parks such as Universal you really have no choice but to use their parking lot, although those aren’t usually too high. If you have the Uber app you could probably find free parking a short drive away and then take an Uber to the gate for US$6 or so. But really it’s probably not worth it.

    For attractions such as Madam Tussauds, there are competing lots in the area, and you can usually find a spot for around US$8 for a few hours. Again, it depends on the attraction.

    And it’s true that most of the attractions are daytime things, but some of them go into the evening such as the OUE Skyspace LA observation deck, which goes until 11pm or midnight. So the 5:30pm thing isn’t a rule. You just have to look at the specific things that you are considering visiting. Best of luck with this and let me know if you have any other questions. -Roger

      Nietje says:

      I have another question. I found they give advise for travel fare. I will be staying in Culver City and like to go to Universal Studio. The site is saying that I will pay for Uber $ 15-22, will this price be correct? If so no need to rent a car for that day, it will be cheaper by Uber as by car. Parking place will cost already $ 18 and rent/gas for car. Sorry maybe I sound cheap, but I prefer to spend my money on attractions and sideseeing and good food as for parking space and high transport.

        Roger Wade says:


        One big issue in Los Angeles is the famous traffic. If you went in the middle of the night then $15 to $22 sounds about right from Culver City to Universal. Unfortunately, there is no freeway that goes directly there, so you have to take surface streets or freeways that take out a bit out of the way. My guess is that at a random time in the morning, it would cost much more in an Uber than $22.

        Honestly, I think you’d have a better day if you rented a car, and driving there isn’t unusually challenging. If you tried to do it just by Uber you might save money, but if traffic is really bad it might end up costing much more. I understand you wanting to economize, and it could work out if you understand that it also might end up costing more. Good luck and let me know if you have any other questions. -Roger

Daniella says:

hi Roger,
We”ll be arriving in LA in 2 weeks . For sure we will purchase the Go LA card . Universal Studio will be a must for our kids . Which other theme parks would u recommend to us , since we will take a 3 days one. We have no idea which parks are already a bit outdated. Which would u recommend between Knott berry o r magic mountain? Many thankss

    Roger Wade says:


    All of the big Southern California theme parks are updated on a regular basis, with Disneyland being the most modern (and most expensive). Magic Mountain has always been known for having the most roller coasters and other thrill rides, while Knott’s Berry Farm has more of a cohesive theme and it is really unique. Magic Mountain is similar to many other Six Flag’s theme parks around the country.

    Knott’s also has many big roller coasters and thrill rides, so it’s a good choice for kids maybe 8 and up, while Magic Mountain might be a bit better for older kids, say 13 and up, but maybe not as good for younger ones.

    Really, they are both great, and if you have to choose one I’d do it more by location. Knott’s is in Buena Park in Orange County, only about 20 miles southeast of downtown Los Angeles and a bit farther from Hollywood. Magic Mountain is in Valencia about 35 miles northwest of Downtown Los Angeles, and a bit closer from Hollywood. Traffic can be bad for both of them, although the worst traffic is going into the city in the morning and out in the afternoon, so you will probably be going the other directions.

    Long story short, it really depends on where you are staying. If you are staying in Burbank or somewhere else in the San Fernando Valley, then Magic Mountain is probably the better choice. But if you are staying in Hollywood or Santa Monica or anywhere near downtown LA or to its south, then Knott’s is probably the better choice. Let me know if you have any other questions. -Roger

Jason Einhorn says:

Hi Roger,

I am contemplating a 3 day pass with my wife and kids ages 6 and 4. My kids are too young for studio tours so I am on the fence. Looking at 1 day in Universal, 1 day on Hollywood for Madam Tuseaud’s and Hollywood mueseum and 1 day on Santa Monica Pier. Can We are staying near LA LIve. Let me know your thoughts.


    Roger Wade says:


    I see your dilemma. Universal will be great, and the Santa Monica Pier park should be as well, for kids that age. Aside from that you’ve got the LA Zoo and the Aquarium of the Pacific that are good for that age, but I can see why you might not want to spend so much of your LA visit on places like that. Legoland is fantastic, though it’s a long drive from Downtown LA.

    I think your plan does look pretty good, and I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised by Madam Tussaud’s. Not only are those figures amazing up close, but they also provide quite a few little fun activities in the museums, such as interesting photo opportunities with costumes and such. So I think you’d enjoy the things on your list, with Universal Studios being the obvious highlight. But paying as you go for some things and having the flexibility to choose some others would also be fun, and probably not much more expensive if at all. The Go LA Card is great for many people, and you seem like you could be on the edge where it could be helpful though not as obviously as with many other groups. Best of luck with your trip and whatever you decide. -Roger

Nico & Cintia says:

Hi Roger. I’m from argentina and i found your posts very helpful, thank you. Me and my girlfriend are coming to LA next year arriving at 11am from San Francisco and will spend that half day plus 2 days in LA, staying at a hotel in hollywood. Do you think it would still be worth it to get a 3-day pass? Even if we will stay only 2 full days in LA. Thanks

    Roger Wade says:

    Nico & Cintia,

    It would be tough to get good value out of a 3-day Pass in only 2 full days. Obviously they offer a 2-Day Pass, but since you mentioned the 3-Day Pass I assume you want to use one of those days for Universal Studios, which isn’t included in the 2-Day version.

    Most people spend the entire day at Universal Studios. Even if you have the evening open, you might not want to rush over to Madam Tussaud’s or something like that. So that means that you’d have one full day and maybe another half day to get $105 or more value out of a pass. If you REALLY rushed around you could save more than that, but if LA traffic is worse than you expect, and often it is, that might be tough. If I were you I’d skip the pass and pre-pay for Universal Studios directly. Then on the other day or day and a half just do the things that appeal to you most. The Go Los Angeles Card does include many fantastic attractions, but there are others you might choose instead if you didn’t have the card. Have a great time and let me know if you have any other questions. -Roger

Jack says:

Hi Roger

We are a small family of 2 adults ,14 year old boy and 5 year girl visiting Los Angeles for the first time from the 28th of December to January 1st.We would be staying at Hyatt Regency Orange County and kindly seek your advice as we want to visit Disneyland,Hollywood and any other interesting places you would recommend.we dont mind shuttles as we wont be in a position to drive.
Kindly also give us indicative prices if possible.

    Roger Wade says:


    I’m happy to try to answer questions about the Go Los Angeles Card and the attractions included and even some other related topics, but your question sounds unrelated so I’m not sure what to say. Visiting the Los Angeles area without a car can be challenging. If you can get and use the Uber app you could get by pretty well and it might even be cheaper than renting a car.

    In the part of Orange County where you’ll be staying, as well as all around Disneyland, you can find normal taxis pretty easily, and many of them are minivans. For longer rides such as to Hollywood, using Uber would be cheaper and possibly even easier. I can’t really recommend where else you should go without knowing a lot more about you. A good guidebook or website such as or or should be very helpful. Best of luck with this. -Roger

Tobias says:

thanks so much for this site!

We will have 4 four full days in L.A. (arrival on Sunday, leaving Friday morning), staying in a hotel very close to Hollywood Western metro station – without car!

If we buy the 3-day-card, which itinary could you suggest?

Warner Studio tour has highest priority; Universal has to be included for paying off the card I guess (isn’t it?); the rest would be up to you, we just want to have a nice mixture of let’s say 6 attractions. They should be accessible by public transport (longer rides aren’t a problem and also taxi/uber are possibile in justified situations).

Thanks, Tobias

    Roger Wade says:


    I’m happy to try to help, though it’s hard to confidently make itinerary suggestions without knowing your tastes and the ages in the group. I agree that Universal should be included if you are going for the 3-day Pass, and it’s an amazing place so I’m sure you’ll love it. The Warner Studio Tour should be fun as well.

    Some things I can recommend that are easy to reach by public transport are Madam Tussaud’s in Hollywood (I used to make fun of these places until I visited one, and now I love them), Hollywood Behind-the-Scenes by Red Line Tours (a short walk from Tussauds), Dolby Theatre® Guided Tour (in the same area), perhaps the Hollywood Museum, which is also in the same area, and the OUE Skyspace LA observation deck in Downtown.

    Most of the other included attractions are at least 10 miles or so away, and it’s harder to string more than 1 or 2 of those together in a day.

    The Hollywood Movie Star Homes Tour also leaves from the same Hollywood and Highland area as the other attractions, but many people find them disappointing. Most of the homes they discuss are homes of stars from long ago or former homes of newer stars. But if it’s free and you have time it can be sort of interesting. I hope this helps. -Roger

Randy says:

Hi Roger

Thank you for the wonderful advice that you have shared! If I can propose my travel plans, I would love to hear your take on them. 2 of us will be visiting in May. We will be staying downtown near the metro line. If we get a 2-day Pass, and take the subway, can we successfully complete the following?

Sony Pictures Studio Tour
Hop-On Hop-Off Los Angeles Bus Tour – Yellow Route
Pacific Park – Santa Monica Pier
Santa Monica Pier Aquarium

Warner Bros. Studio Tour Hollywood
Hollywood Museum
Dolby Theatre® Guided Tour
Hollywood Movie Star Homes Tour
Madame Tussauds Hollywood

I am toying with the 3-day option so that we can visit Universal, but since we only have 3 days in LA I am unsure if I want 3 busy days (plus the added cost).

    Roger Wade says:


    As long as you get an early start, I think your plan will work. You’ll have to factor in that Pacific Park closes at 6pm on some days of the week, and you’ll almost certainly need to be there into the evening a bit in order to make use of entering. And the Santa Monica Pier Aquarium isn’t part of the Los Angles Pass, I don’t believe.

    On the second day you’ll need to schedule the Warner Brothers tour as early as possible. After that, all of the attractions are in the same place so you can do all of them that you have the energy for. Personally, I’m not a big fan of the “Star’s homes” tours because you don’t really get to see any current residents of any current stars. On the other hand, it’s always fun to see those mansions in Beverly Hills and Hollywood, and if it’s free (or included) and you have time, then it’s still fun.

    I see what you mean about Universal. On one hand, Universal is as amazing and memorable as Disneyland these days. But your first two days are already quite busy, and any day at Universal is going to be a busy one. I hope this helps. Let me know if you have any other questions. -Roger

Keith says:

Hi Roger,

I really appreciate your comments and how you’ve helped others.

Please let me know if this itinerary for 7 and 11 year old would work, for proximity and ages (7 year old loves rollercoasters, and speed):

– 10am: Warner Bros Studios – 3 hours
– 1pm: Santa Monica Pier
– 3pm: Madame Tussauds – 90 minutes
– Hollywood museum/Dolby Theatre Guided Tour
– Hop-on, hop-off bus tour?

– Universal Studios
– Skyspace LA observation deck

– Knott’s Berry Farm
– Hollywood museum?
– Hop-on, hop-off bus tour?
– Newport Landing, and the Long Beach Whale Watch or Harbor Cruise

Thank you Sir!

    Roger Wade says:


    I’ll be happy to try to help. First off, the website says that the Warner Brothers Studio Tour takes about 3 hours and they don’t admit anyone under 8 because it’s a working studio. So that is a bit of a problem for you, unless someone has a birthday coming up quickly. The other problem is that it’s about an hour by car from the Santa Monica Pier. Madam Tussaud’s and the Dolby Theater/Hollywood Museum are in the same place, on the way from Warner Brothers to Santa Monica, so you’d be better off doing those first and the pier last. I don’t think you’d have time for the HOHO bus on that same day, so you really have to make some choices.

    Most people do Universal Studios for a whole day. But it does seem to close at 6pm or 7pm on most Mondays in the coming months. I just see that the OUE Skyspace LA only accepts the Go Los Angeles Pass until 5:30pm for admission (you can stay as long as you want after that), so you’d have to leave Universal by 4:30pm or so. It may be better to stay in the park, as it is filled with thrills and the kids might not appreciate the city view as much as the rides.

    If you want roller coasters then Six Flags Magic Mountain is a bit better than Knott’s Berry Farm, and both are a bit outside the city. It really depends on where you are staying as to which one to visit. If you are staying in Hollywood or the Valley then Magic Mountain is better, but if you are Downtown or near the beaches then Knott’s is easier to reach. Either way, those theme parks are also usually all-day attractions. Newport Landing and Long Beach aren’t very close either. I’d recommend either doing a theme park OR doing those other things on any given day. You might be able to fit another thing or two in, but it’s important to figure out how far apart they are and the opening hours. Visiting Los Angeles is complicated in that way. Let me know if you have any other questions. -Roger

Randy says:

Hi Roger

Randy here again. I’ve updated our itinerary based on an interesting turn of events…I was able to purchase a 4-DAY Pass through Costco in Canada. So, Universal Studios will now be a part of our trip!

This is my proposed itinerary…

THURSDAY (afternoon)
Sony Pictures Studio Tour
Hollywood Walk of Fame (free sightseeing)
TCL Chinese Theater (free sightseeing)

Universal Studios

Warner Bros. Studio Tour Hollywood
Hollywood Museum
Dolby Theatre® Guided Tour
Madame Tussauds Hollywood
Hollywood Movie Star Homes Tour (maybe)

SUNDAY (beach/leisure day)
Hop-On Hop-Off Los Angeles Bus Tour – Yellow Route
Pacific Park – Santa Monica Pier
Santa Monica Pier Aquarium

I’m thinking we might be exhausted by Sunday, so I may switch Saturday’s activities to Sunday (and vice versa) so that we have a more leisurely day after Universal (taking a day with a slower pace of sightseeing).

Your input on the proposed itinerary is appreciated. Do you agree that our “down day” should be the Saturday rather than the Sunday? Or go strong for 3 days and slow down on the fourth? We arrive late Thursday morning and depart Monday morning.

As always, your advice is greatly appreciated.

Prieta says:

I will be Cali in early June 2017, with 2 friends, We want st see the Hollywood sign, the Stars and hit the beach, any suggestions or other things to do in West Hollywood. 3 friends on a Budget



    This is an article about the Go Los Angeles Card and I try to help people make a decision whether it’s good for them or not, and how to use it. It sounds like you aren’t doing any of the included attractions. Even then, it’s hard for me to make recommendations without knowing more about you. West Hollywood has some fun areas, including along the Sunset Strip. But I’d recommend spending at least one evening in Venice Beach in the Abbot Kinney area. Have a great time. -Roger

Andreas says:

Hi, we are a family of 5 with kids ages 8,7 and 2. We are planning to buy the 3 day go card for our trip in July this summer. We want to do Universal on day 1, Knotts berry farm and their water park on day 2. Day 3 Legoland when we leave LA for San Diego. After Universal we would like to do the attraction at the Santa Monica pier but on the go card LA site it says you have to use the card by 05:30. Is this true or can we still enter later in the evening? Are there other attractions we could squeeze in on any of the days? Thanks for your time! /Andreas



    If you are referring to Pacific Park on Santa Monica Pier, I am not seeing where it says the hours are different than the park hours themselves. I’ve seen a few things in this pass that are only available during the day, which is disappointing. As far as I can see, this one is valid until closing. Let me know if I am missing something because that could be the case.

    The Aquarium on the pier closes at 5pm though. It does look like other top attractions such as Madam Tussauds are cut off at 5:30pm, unfortunately. My best guess is that they offered admission up until their 10pm closing time, and they were probably swamped with visitors who had come from theme parks during the day. That’s just a theory though. Hopefully Pacific Park does allow admission into the evening because it would be perfect for you and it’s a really nice place.

    It does seem that the Go Los Angeles Card is set up that each valid day you can either do one major attraction such as a theme park, OR you can do a studio tour and bus tour and Madam Tussauds etc, but not really both. Your kids are probably going to be exhausted after a full day at Universal or Knott’s, so you might prefer to relax in the evening anyway. I hope this works for you. -Roger

Debbie says:

I will be in LA on 7-30 and leaving 8-2. We are going to a Dodger game on 7-30. Does it pay for us to buy the 3 day Go LA Card? We want to do Universal, Warner, Sony Studio tours in the remaining two days, along with the whale watching and Santa Monica Pier. We can either stay on Franklin Ave in Hollywood or Pasenda. I have reservations at both, trying to figure out what works best. We are doing a PCH road trip from San Fran with San Diego the last stop. We also want to hike to the Hollywood sign. Thoughts? Suggestions gladly accepted.
Thank you.



    I grew up going to Dodger games so that brings me back. If you have 3 full days, which would be July 30, July 31, and August 1, then your plan would work very well. You really want to save a full day for Universal, and since you can’t use the card on a weekend it would mean going on July 31 or August 1. If you arrive in the morning you’d have time to do one of the studio tours and whale watching, although doing both studio tours on that day would be much less driving.

    Another day you could do a studio tour in the morning if you preferred, the whale watching in the afternoon, and Pacific Park on Santa Monica Pier in the evening. And again, you’ll want a full day for Universal. You’d still have time to drive to near the Hollywood sign. I used to live in Hollywood, and the sign is very visible once you start driving up Beachwood Canyon Drive, but the sign itself is behind fences and not easy to reach. Getting some good photos of it will only take 30 minutes or so, so you could even do that on the way to Dodger Stadium, which isn’t too far away.

    Staying in Hollywood would be more central to the places you want to visit. Pasadena is quite nice, but there is always traffic going between it and downtown and Hollywood. I hope this helps. Let me know if you have any other questions. -Roger

Joey says:


Day 1.
Hollywood Museum
Dolby Theatre® Guided Tour
Madame Tussauds Hollywood
TLC Chinese Theater
Warren Bros tour

Day 2
Universal Studios

Day 3
Sony Studios tour
Santa Monica Pacific Pier
Santa Monica Pier Aquarium
Malibu Tour ?

Let me know what you think we have two kids 18 and 14 and staying by Unver. studios




    That looks like a really good itinerary. I’m just looking now and it appears that you can choose the Chinese Theater OR the Hollywood Museum, which is a bit of a shame. On Day 1 it might be better to go from your hotel to the Warner Brothers Tour, which is nearby. Traffic is usually lighter in the mornings, so you could be in the heart of Hollywood by noon if you scheduled your Warner Brothers Tour at 8am, or at least by 1pm if you scheduled for 9am. Then you’d be able to do all of those Hollywood things that are all next to each other, and not worry about rushing back over the hill in the traffic as it gets worse and worse in the afternoon. From Hollywood to Universal in the evening it’s not too bad because you only need to travel a short distance on the freeway.

    The other two days look very good as well. Again, it’s best to schedule your studio tour in the morning if possible, as long as you allow time to get there from Universal.

    As for the Malibu Stars Home’s Tour, I agree that it could be good if you have time, but I wouldn’t worry if you don’t. It’s a very nice drive from Santa Monica to Malibu, but the problem is that every home in Malibu looks amazing from the beach, and looks tiny and plain from the street. They are almost all built on cliffs, so on the street you just see the garage and maybe a couple of back bedrooms on the top floor. Meanwhile, the houses have 3 or 4 levels below that, with all views facing the ocean. So as long as you go with that in mind and you are interested in seeing the scenery in and on the way to Malibu, it would be nice (since it’s free with the Go Los Angeles Card). I’m not sure I’d pay for it though. Let me know if you have any other questions. -Roger

Tyson T says:

Hi Roger,

All great information, in town on business and 8yr old is flying up weds 4/19

Purchasing 4day pass
Trip from 4/19 to 4/23 ** Sunday will be leaving around 5/6PM

Would be Ideal to go to – universal studios / Legoland / six flags / Santa Monica and beachy stuff **Most likely a Saturday / knottsberry (least of his must go to 🙂 )

Looking to relocate from current hotel and would like your advise on most ideal area to buy hotel room that would be most ideal to what he would like to do, if have a chance to respond. Also, feel free to advise other places that you feel would fit our likings 😉

Thank you in advance





    I’ll be happy to help, but I’m a bit unclear on what I can do for you. One thing to mention is that Legoland is about 95 miles south of Hollywood and it’ll take 2 hours each way, if not a bit more. It’s a great attraction for anyone wanting to head to San Diego as well, especially on the last day of the pass, but it’s a very long day and round-trip if you are staying in Hollywood or the Valley or even Santa Monica.

    As for choosing a hotel, Los Angeles is very tricky because the traffic is pretty terrible every weekday, and often on weekends as well. Hollywood and West Hollywood are the closest to the most attractions, but an 8-year-old probably cares more about the theme parks and the beach, which are all spread out. If you want to be near the beach then Santa Monica is the best area, but if you want to be closer to the Hollywood studios and attractions, then West Hollywood is more central.

    Six Flags Magic Mountain and Knott’s Berry Farm are both great amusement parks, and each is about 30 miles from Santa Monica or West Hollywood. Santa Monica is more pleasant in general for the mornings and evenings, so I’d stay around there if you could. I’m not sure what else to say, but I’m happy to answer other specific questions if you have them. -Roger

Joey says:

Thank you, Roger

Yes I plan on doing Warner Bros before Hollywood stuff thanks for the tip. Yeah Malibu isn’t high on our list we just figured trying to get most bang for our buck. Might look at Hop on Hop off ride or something else in Hollywood. So would you recommend TLC or Hollywood Museum. Also thank you again for your wonderful insite. I’m also reading your articles about the Caribbean since going to take my wife on a trip there I’ve been to a lot of places just like more information




    I’m glad this has helped. As for choosing the Chinese Theater or the Hollywood Museum, I’d say you would be best off reading the recent TripAdvisor reviews of both, and seeing which sounds better to you. When I lived in Hollywood last, which was decades ago, I’d walk to the Chinese Theater to see movies and they didn’t offer tours. And the Hollywood Museum didn’t exist. I can tell you that the Chinese Theater is a very large and classic old theater, and I’d think that the tour would be interesting. The Hollywood Museum appears to focus (unsurprisingly) on Hollywood nostalgia and memorabilia. My guess is that the kids might find the big theater kind of interesting for a while, but might not care about “ancient” movie stars and TV shows. But again, it’s probably better to read recent reviews and poll the family. Let me know if you have any other questions. -Roger

Kevin says:


Given Joey’s itinerary:

Day 1.
Hollywood Museum
Dolby Theatre® Guided Tour
Madame Tussauds Hollywood
TLC Chinese Theater
Warren Bros tour

Day 2
Universal Studios

Day 3
Sony Studios tour
Santa Monica Pacific Pier
Santa Monica Pier Aquarium
Malibu Tour ?

What area would you suggest for us to stay to keep it convenient?




    Given that itinerary, the two obvious choices that have many hotels are West Hollywood and the Santa Monica area. West Hollywood has much better nightlife, but overall Santa Monica is a much nicer part of Los Angeles and it’s very central to many important places, including Downtown. Since the 405 freeway and 10 freeway meet there, you can quickly get to quite a few worthwhile places. You’d be taking surface streets mostly from Santa Monica to West Hollywood, but that usually only takes 30 minutes or so, and there is a lot to see on the way. I hope this helps. -Roger

Joey says:

With my itinerary Kevin and Roger I choose the Burbank area to fly into and stay.


Robert says:

Hello Roger,
First of all thanks for all the valuable information you have shared so far, I tried to go through and although I found some answers I still have some “open point”.
Actually, we’re planning a visit from Hungary to the West Coast with our -that time almost 7 and almost 12 years old- kids in end of October/beginning of November. In fact we’ll spend altogether 4 “net” days in the SD/LA area, 2 in Carlsbad/San Diego and 2 in LA.
I checked all the opportunities of both San Diego Go and LA Go passes, several attractions are included in both, so what I’ writing down is already a pre-conclusion:
Day 1 (wake up in a hotel in Carslbad) : San Diego (Sea World, USS Midway, etc…)
for this it’s not worth to buy a pass
Day 2 : From out hotel Carlsbad – to Legoland (and after, in the evening go to our next hotel: Ontario LA)
Day 3 : Universal studios
Day 4: Warner Bro’s studios, Hollywood walk of fame, something from the pass menu over there + beaches around Santa Monica / boat trip and something from the pass menu around.
The idea is to by a LA card of 3 days that covers both Legoland and Universal, just this is roughly around its price and benefit from anything else as extras

My specific questions:
1., Do you think it’s generally a good idea (the 3 days pass in our specific case)
2., Do you confirm that in Universal and Legoland although having the pass we need to go to the ticket counters and wait in the queues?
3., For the WB studio tour we need to book somehow a specific tour slot or just go there anytime (even more important us our hotel is 1- 1,5 hours away depending on the traffic…)
For Universal is it the same rule that applies?
(I guess it’s not an issue for Legoland)
4., Warner Bros homepage: children ticket: 8 to 13 – does it mean that my not-even-yet 7 years old boy will be refused to enter (he’d love the DC staff, although for us, the parents- Friends couch would be the main attraction)
5., For the last day: do you have a suggestion (we’d like visit Hollywood walk of fame and around and a beach area (Santa Monica) and one of the boat tours (I’m not sure whales will be still around that season) but no specific plan….)
A big thanks in advance for your feedback!
Best regards,



    I’ll be happy to try to help.

    1. Yes, it looks like the 3-Day Pass would be good value for you since you are doing 2 expensive things and a few others on that remaining day.

    2. For Legoland you have to show your pass at the ticket booths, and they will give you entry tickets. For Universal you just show your pass at the entrance queue and you walk right in without going through the ticket queue.

    3. You do need to book a specific tour time for the Warner Brothers Tour. But it’s Los Angeles and traffic can be bad, so I’m sure you can join a tour if you arrive a bit late. They just want to space it out so people don’t have to wait for hours once they arrive.

    4. It looks like the rule is the Warner Brothers Tour is only for 8 and up. Children in the US don’t normally carry around identification, so if your almost-7-year-old looks like he could be 8 and is well behaved, I imagine you’d be fine. I’d think they just don’t want little kids who might burst into tears and can’t be controlled.

    5. There are many great included options near the Hollywood Walk of Fame. I’d consider doing Madam Tussauds. Those places are WAY more impressive than you might expect, and they have little interactive displays and games for children as well. You can be out in less than 90 minutes, and you’ll be impressed. I’m not sure about the whales either, but Santa Monica is very nice and hopefully you can do a boat of some kind.

    Let me know if you have other questions. -Roger

Robert says:

Thanks a lot ROger for your great help!

Stuart says:

Hi Roger
My wife and I are going to LA this month for 10 days. One day is taken going to Disneyland which sadly isn’t included here. I’m a bit undecided whether to get us 3 day or 5 day passes. We will use one day for Universal. Other things we would do on the list are
-Warner Bros Studio Tour
-Rockin Hollywood Tours
-Hollywood Museum
-Hollywood Behind the Scenes Tour
-Sony Pictures Tours
-We’ll also stop by the Santa Monica Pier but not sure how many rides we’ll go on
-We are also planning to go to the Citadel Outlet mall and I’ve seen there are discounts with the card, but I don’t know if its a good use of a day
Do you think we will be able to fit in those things within 2 days or should we spring for the longer card? We have a hire car so won’t be relying on public transport

Thanks- Stuart



    Yes, it’s a shame that Disney doesn’t participate in this card, but they don’t do any sort of promotions like this.

    Actually, a couple of the things on your list are new to me, so it appears that they’ve just recently been added to the Go Card. And they look quite good as well. I’d say that if you can afford the 5-day card that it would be the better choice. The unfortunate thing about Los Angeles is that there is traffic all day to some degree, and it’s just about impossible to get from one place to another quickly. And when you add in parking and that sort of thing, it’ll take a minimum of 90 minutes between things except for the ones all close together in Hollywood.

    Since the 5-day pass only costs a bit more and it brings the per-day price down quite a bit, I think you’ll easily get enough out of it to pay for itself. In other words, if you made it your life’s goal to fit all of those things into 2 days, you could potentially do it. But I don’t think they would be fun days really. The theme parks are best done as a full day, and most other things can be done 3 per day, but trying to do 4 things in one day would mean a mad rush and maybe not even getting to the last thing because you are stuck in traffic. I’m happy to help with more advice if you have any other questions. Have a great trip. -Roger

Karen says:

Hello Roger,
First of all, thanks for the important information you share with us.
Do you know if I can use the 3-day Go Los Angeles Card to Universal Studios on weekends?



    I’m happy to help. This is interesting. The Universal Studios offer used to say “valid for a weekday admission” but now I don’t see that anywhere. This is a big issue so I just called them. They confirmed that as of two months ago, Universal is now valid on ANY day of the week for a 3-day or higher Go Los Angeles Card! This is very good news for all of us. Thanks for asking. -Roger

Danielle says:

Hello! Thank you for sharing your wealth of knowledge! I was wondering if you could give me some advice. My family has never been to the LA area and we are planning a trip this August. Originally, I was planning to go to Universal for one day and then commute to San Diego to go to the zoo, however after finding out about the go card I am thinking it might be cheaper and easier to stay in the LA area and do the attractions nearby. We have a 10 and 12 year old who are at the age where they love rides. If I purchased the 3 day pass would it be worth it and realistic to do Day 1 Universal, Day 2 warner bro tour and Madame Tussaud’s, Day 3 knotts berry farm? Also, if we are staying near universal would knots berry be a really far drive? And lastly are you able to suggest affordable family hotels in a safe area? Thank you so much again! I have found more answers on your site than anywhere!



    I’m happy to try to help with these things, especially as someone who grew up in Los Angeles and misses a lot about it. Your plan would definitely work with a 3-day Go Los Angeles Card. It’s wise to take a full day for Universal and also for Knott’s (or Six Flags Magic Mountain). On that middle day you will have time to do at least 3 things if you like. The Warner Brothers Tour takes about 3 hours (make an early reservation if possible) and it’s not far from Universal. Then you can drive into central Hollywood in the early afternoon. Madame Tussaud’s (MUCH more impressive than most people expect) will take maybe 60 to 90 minutes to explore. After that you’ll still have time for one more thing, and there are several interesting choices within walking distance of Madame Tussaud’s.

    Depending on where you stay, there’s a good chance you’ll be closer to Six Flags Magic Mountain than to Knott’s Berry Farm. Magic Mountain is more known for roller coasters and thrill rides than Knott’s is, although both are great. Also, the morning traffic to Magic Mountain shouldn’t be bad, and the traffic on your way home is mostly in the other direction. For Knott’s the traffic will be fairly heavy in both directions. Still, either one would be great, and if it’s the only thing on your schedule for the day, the extra time in the car will quickly be forgotten compared to the experience itself.

    As far as where to stay, I can’t suggest a specific hotel, but I can tell you that the Burbank area is safe, relatively affordable, and quite close to the places you are going. Anywhere near the Warner Brothers lot is safe and pretty nice, and the places in central Burbank a bit to the north are as well. As long as you avoid central or eastern Hollywood, you should be fine. Let me know if you have any other questions. -Roger

hayley says:

Hi Roger
This seems like a stupid question but I have been looking into the Go card for 3 days. And its confusing me. Do I pay the $205 and then pay absolutely nothing at the gates? Is there any hidden charges with this card? Could you please give me as much information on this as possible please.



    It does sound a little too good to be true in places, but yes, that’s how it works. You still have to pay for parking, of course, and things like that. But admission is included without paying anything extra. For some of the tours you have to make a reservation, but it’s still included. Have a great trip. -Roger

hayley says:

thank you Roger I appreciate you getting back to me.

Dermot cashman says:

Roger…. is the paramount studio tour still included in the card? Please advise … thank you



    I’ve been following this for a few years now and I don’t recall ever seeing the Paramount Tour being included. It’s always been Universal, Warner Brothers, and Sony. Hopefully those will be suitable. -Roger

Liz says:

Hi Roger! Could you please tell me the difference between the LA Go Card and the Hollywood Go Card? I’m from So-Cal but have been away for sometime for Military reasons so I’m just now finding out about these cards and they seem AWESOME! I’m a little confused though because as I browse through our military listing of discounts for attractions, they offer a Los Angeles Go Card and a Hollywood Go Card. I’m googling both cards but it seems that the LA Go Card covers much of Hollywood attractions as well…is there a “major” difference between the 2 cards because I’m trying to decipher if I should purchase a Hollywood Go Card or just a LA Go Card (which seems to pretty much cover Hollywood attractions as well). Please advise. Thank you in advance!



    I’m aware of a Hollywood Explorer Pass, but not a Hollywood Go Card. In the case of the Hollywood Explorer Pass it gets you into Madame Tussauds, the Guinness World Records Museum, and then two tours out of a choice of 4. All of those are located in Hollywood, and if those are the only places you want to visit then it really is a big money saver.

    The Go Los Angeles Card covers all of those things but also several expensive theme parks (Magic Mountain, Knott’s Berry Farm, LegoLand, and Universal Studios on 3-day and up passes). It’s much more expensive so it’s really only good value if you are going to use it for at least one or two of those expensive theme parks. So they are quite different. Let me know if you have a more specific question, of if I am looking at the wrong thing. -Roger

Devina says:

Hello Roger,
Ive got the 3 day LA Go Card. Im going to be doing Universal one day, knotts berry farm another day and on the 3rd day the warner brothers tour. I was wondering what were the other best near by attractions to do after the warner tour? I have a 12 year old son and a 9 year old son.



    There are no other included attractions that are very close to Warner Brothers Studio, and almost no attractions in general. Fortunately, Burbank is only 15 to 30 minutes from the center of Hollywood, depending on traffic of course. I haven’t done all of those attractions that are clustered together near Hollywood Boulevard and Highland Avenue, but my favorite is Madame Tussauds. I was skeptical of these places before I first visited one, but they are amazingly well done and very entertaining for an hour or two. From there you are within a short walk of several other attractions including the Hollywood Museum and the Chinese Theater guided tour. You should have enough time to do at least two things after the Warner Brothers Tour, as long as you do that one as early in the day as possible.

    The kids will enjoy Madame Tussauds. They have many sports stars and even interactive displays that are really impressive. Let me know if you have any other questions. -Roger

Leslie says:

Thank you for your article Roger, eventhough you wrote it few years ago, is still helpfull information for the visitors, I was very skeptical about believing this is for real, so with this information I don’t have a doubt about it, I want to do Universal Studios and the trolley tour, do you have any idea if the pass is valid all days? because I wanna go to de US on friday.



    I’m glad you find this helpful. And we actually update these articles at least twice a year, so it really should be current.

    Universal Studios used to only be valid on weekdays (including Friday) until a few months ago, but they opened it up and it’s valid all days. Of course you have to buy a 3-day or longer pass to get Universal included. Let me know if you have any other questions. -Roger

Leslie says:

Thanks! Actually I’m building my own card, because I will be only here fot 2 days, so I´m considering the Madame Tussauds since you say is nice for kids to visit, I have an 8 years old boy.


greetings from Bogota/Colombia
Thank you so much for the article, it was very helpful, you share a lot of information on the comments, thanks again, amazing job.

Planka says:

Hi Roger. Great post and very helpful. I read Randy’s comments from March 24 2017 and he says something very interesting. Costco are offering what appears to be a 4-day Go Los Angeles Card for the same price as the normal 3-day card. I am trying to confirm with Costco that this is the same card but I was wondering if you know anything about it? Thanks again, great read.



    I’m not familiar with the Costco deal, but it sounds like something they’d offer. They don’t normally offer anything at full price, and if it’s a Go Los Angeles Card it sounds like a great deal. Best of luck with it. -Roger

Randy says:

Hi Roger (and Planka)

This is a follow-up to our trip in May. We did indeed buy and successfully use a 4-day Go Los Angeles Card from Costco in Canada. Everything worked out great!

This is the itinerary that we accomplished…

Sony Pictures Studio Tour (traveled there directly from LAX)

Universal Studios (AMAZING!)

Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tour – Yellow Route from Santa Monica pier
(spent the afternoon in Beverly Hills)
Pacific Park – Santa Monica Pier

Warner Bros. Studio Tour Hollywood
Hollywood Museum
Hollywood Movie Star Homes Tour
Madame Tussauds Hollywood
TCL Chinese Theater tour

Note that this was all done using public transportation. Other than uber from the airport, our entire trip was subway, light rail or bus to all attractions (from the downtown core).

There were a few other things that we wanted to squeeze in, but they either closed early (eg. the Santa Monica aquarium) or we couldn’t make the 5 pm cut-off time. For Madame Tussauds, we were able to get our tickets in the early afternoon, go on the Movie Star Homes Tour, and return to the museum later that evening.

Thank you Roger and all other contributors for your guidance and advice. We had a great (and exhausting) first trip to LA! — Randy



    That sounds great and I’m glad you were able to pack so many things in. It’s also very interesting to know that you were able to do so much of it using public transportation. Thanks for taking the time to report back. -Roger

Scott Webb says:

Hi Roger,
Lovin all the information and your valuable insights.

We are coming from Australia in 2.5 weeks for 12 days. We have booked a 3 day park hopper disney pass and a 7 day LA GO card.
We also have a car for the whole time.
My wife and I have been to the US about 20 years ago but it will be a first time trip for our 4 girls (19,17,16 & 9 (turning 10 on our last day there))
Our current itinerary is
Monday – Arrive & shopping
Tuesday – Disneyland
Wednesday Disneyland
Thursday Disneyland (magic morning)
Friday Knott’s Berry Farm & Soak city
Saturday Warner Bros Tour (10am), go karting, Madam Tussauds,walk of fame
Sunday Legoland (Early morning start)
Monday Hollywood homes tour, grammy museum, LA Dogers baseball game
Tueday universal Studios
Wednesday Hop on Hop of tour, Santa Monica, Beach day, Shopping
Thursday Six flags magic mountain
Friday Catchup on anything we want – fly home at 10pm

We have tried to pace our selves and leave some down time whilst getting the most from our 7 day card.
Can you offer any suggestions/changes?



    Actually, your itinerary looks really well planned and I don’t have any suggestions or changes. Your idea of going to Legoland on Sunday is a fantastic one, especially with the early start, because that is the only day that you’ll probably have very little traffic on that long journey. And it doesn’t look like you are trying to pack too many things into any of your days. That’s one advantage of a 7-day card, so you can pace yourself nicely like this. Let me know if you have any questions. -Roger

Jennifer says:

Hi Roger,

I am doing the two day pass. I want to visit some tours and cruises for the first day. How do you pre-book the cruises? Do you just go on their website and call the number?

Thank you!



    For each of the attractions on the Go Los Angles Card website it should have instructions for how to book under the tab that says “Details.” For example for the Harbor Cruise or Whale Watch in Long Beach it says:
    Confirmed reservations must be made by calling (562) 432-4900 or emailing [email protected]. Walk-ups will be allowed, availability permitting.
    So it looks like it should be easy as long as you plan in advance, and you might even be able to walk up if you show up on a whim. I’d do reservations for sure though. Have a great trip. -Roger

Aylin says:

Hi Roger,
We are planning a trip in Los Angeles for 4 days for Christmas time.

We would like to see:
Universal Studios,
Madame Tussauds,
Warner Bros. Studios,
Hollywood Boulvard (Walk of Fame, China Theatre, Dolby Theatre ect), some of the beaches like Venice and Santa Monica.
And a general city tour of Beverly Hills, Downtown ect.

If you could help me with some clues about that time of year that would be great.
Is it worth to have a Los Angeles Go Card for these places for 4 days?
We are planning to stay in a hotel close to the lax airport. Isn’t it possible to use the public transport to go to these places from there?
Thank you in advance.

Aylin Palanduz



    As of a few years ago I would have said it’s impossible to visit all of these places using public transportation, but now I think it actually is possible. It will be slower than driving a rented car, but if you are able to use Uber or Lyft for some of your connections it won’t be much slower. In other words, your hotel might only be on a slow bus line that takes 30 minutes to get to the metro system, so you could take an Uber or taxi and be there in 5 or 10 minutes. The LAX area isn’t very central, but I do think it could be done with some planning.

    The weather in LA is good or great almost every day of the year, so you should have a good time. You might get a rainy day if you are unlucky, but you might also get days around 27C/80F for most of your visit. It gets dark by 5pm in December and Universal and the other outdoor attractions close around that time or maybe 6pm, but the crowds are much smaller than in summer so you’ll be able to see and do more in a shorter time. It will probably be chilly and kind of windy on the beaches, even if it’s warmer inland.

    Based on the things on your list, it looks like you’d just about break even with a Go Los Angeles Card, or you’d already be saving money if you do the hop-on, hop-off bus tour. And you should also have two half days free still, so you could do another attraction or two and save even more. There are several interesting ones all within a short walk of each other near Madame Tussauds, so it works out well if you’ve got half a day to spend there. Let me know if you have any other questions. -Roger

TJ says:

Hi Roger,

Thank you for the write. I came across your article googling about the LA gocard i saw costco is selling. We are planning a 2 week trip to SoCal in June of next year. After a few days in Disneyland, we (wife and 2 kids 11 /16 y.o.) plan on hitting Knotts, Santa Monica and Universal. Hotels are fully covered using various points. But tickets alone to go to these three attractions will run me over $1K. Trying to minimize output of cash

Our itinerary:
Day 1 – 4 days at Disneyland.
Day 5 – 6 Knotts Berry Farm water and amusement parks
Day 7 Santa Monica Pier
Day 8 Universal
Remaining days visiting various places (maybe drive down to Vegas lol)

1. If I buy now, is it only valid this year? Or is it good to use at any time?

2. Is the gocard good for only 1 time entry to each of the major attractions?

3. We are not interested in any of the studio tours, but contemplating 2 days visiting Universal for the rides. Do you recommend 2 days? Will my boys be able to hit all the rides (once or twice) when we are there from opening to closing?

Your input is appreciated! Thanks.



    1. The Go Los Angeles Cards are valid up to one year after you purchase them, and you can return them for a full refund during that year if you don’t use them.

    2. Yes, you can only enter each attraction once.

    3. I haven’t been to Universal Studios in quite a few years, but from what I hear the lines for the rides are usually not insanely long like they are at some places. If you go on a weekday the lines are even shorter. I really think one day is best at Universal because they don’t have nearly as many rides as Disneyland, Knott’s, or Magic Mountain. Universal does have some rides, but everything is movie themed and they have various shows and tours rather than just rides. Let me know if you have any other questions. -Roger

TJ says:

Thanks for the response Roger! But a couple more questions if you don’t mind. Instead of buying it online, I plan on going into one of the stores located on Katella Ave (per their website) when we get to LA.

1. Will it be a physical Go Card buying it at the store?

2. If it is a card instead of an electronic pass, does the cards specify which one is the adult card and which card is for my 11 y.o.? There are a couple of activities I am interested in doing but the rest of the family don’t want to do. I don’t want to get to the attraction and find out I picked up the wrong pass off the table.



    I’ve never actually used one, but I grew up in Los Angeles and have been to most of these things and have researched this a lot. According to a Japanese-language website, you do indeed get a physical card and it says “3-day Adult” on the example in the photo. It looks pretty well organized. -Roger

TJ says:

Great! Thanks for the info and quick response Roger! Next summer can’t come soon enough

anne says:

hi am going to la staying in garland hotel is it easy to get to universal sudios also want to do madam tussards hollywood wax museum walk of fame and knotts berry soak city or knotts berry farm would it be better to get hop on hop off bus and get 5 day pass go card or would it be cheaper to pay when i get there need help unsure best way as i cant afford to lose money



    The Garland Hotel is only a mile from Universal Studios, so you could actually walk there in about 20 minutes, but it’s up a hill so it’s better to drive or take a bus, taxi, or Uber.

    It sounds like you are doing enough of the included attractions that a Go Card will definitely be worth it. I’m not sure exactly what else you are asking, but I’m happy to help more if I can. Universal Studios alone pays for a good chunk of the cost of a Go Card, so it’s easy to get good value with the remaining attractions in your remaining days. Again, I’ll answer other questions if you have them. -Roger

Ruchika says:

Hi, I’m on a 2 day tour for LA. Can you tell me the best places to cover via this pass?



    This isn’t an easy question to answer because people’s tastes are very different. But I would say in two days you’d want to spend one of those days in the central Hollywood area because there are many included attractions so you can see 3 or 4 of them in 6 or 7 hours. The Madame Toussauds museums are FAR more entertaining than you might imagine, and you can have a great time in there in 60 to 90 minutes. And there are many other included attractions within walking distance of that, so see what looks good to you.

    On the other day I would recommend a studio tour such as Warner Brothers or Sony (Universal Studios is only included on 3-day passes and it’s a full-day thing), and you can also do the hop-on, hop-off bus tour (although just stay on the whole route), Or you could even do Knott’s Berry Farm, which is a great theme park about 30 miles south of Los Angeles. And there are some good evening activities as well. Again, it’s more a matter of taste and interests. Let me know if you have any other questions and I’ll try to help more. -Roger

Shai-leigh says:

Hi Roger,

Your information is invaluable. Thank you. I’m coming from Australia in July for 3 weeks with my 9 year old daughter and 21 year old son. I’m staying at Anaheim hotel for 10 nights- so getting a 4 day park pass to Disneyland, now I’m thinking of getting the la go card for 7 days. I read that you have to use it consecutively, is that right?
I will do berry farm while at Anaheim as well. Then I’m not entirely sure where I’m staying for the remaining 11 nights (thinking central la) then hitting universal Studios, the other studios, LEGOLAND, San Diego safari, movie star home tours, whale tour and Santa Monica pier! Oh yeah, the Hollywood stars, rodeo drive, Hollywood sign. Is there anything that I have missed, and could you do a rough itinerary with your knowledge of the area. I don’t have much money, so definitely can’t afford to waste. I also don’t want to rush everything and be super tired, so that’s why I’m concerned about if the days have to be consecutive or not! Thanks and I look forward to hearing from you



    Actually, once you activate your Go Los Angeles Card you have two weeks to use up your days, so you don’t have to use it on consecutive days.

    It looks like you’ve got all of the major attractions covered. If you somehow are still in the mood for theme parks you might also consider Magic Mountain, which has more roller coasters and thrill rides than the others. I would also consider spending part of a day in Hollywood because there are many included attractions within a short walk of each other. The Madame Tussauds Wax Museum is much more impressive than you might imagine, and you can enjoy it in about an hour, and still have time for a couple more nearby things. Since you can split up those days and take a break from amusement parks, I think you’ll have a wonderful time. Let me know if you have any other questions. -Roger

Shai-leigh says:

Hi roger,

I originally was going to ask whether I should get a vip pass to universal Studios or 2 day pass? Or with this card, is that like a vip pass?
Thanks again



    The Go Los Angeles Card includes Universal Studios admission on passes of 3 days or more. It allows you to skip the ticket queue and go right into the entry queue, but I don’t think it’s a VIP pass. Have a great trip. -Roger

Shai-leigh says:

Hi Roger,

Can you please explain the difference between vip pass, normal entry and what the go card does for universal Studios please? I’m confused and don’t want to waste my money, but I want to have a great time.




    I’m not a Universal expert, but it looks like the VIP Experience gives you a private guide and more access to parts of the park that aren’t open to other guests. And it also costs at LEAST $200 more per person, so it’s not cheap. -Roger

Otto says:

Hi Roger,

I wished I would have gotten to see your site beforehand. I ended buying my Go Card from Groupon, still at a good price though. I was wondering if you know. Do we need to visit a GoCard office to activate or register our vouchers? Or can we just show up to the attractions with the voucher? If we do need to visit a GoCard office, which one do you think is closer to South Pasadena?

Thank you for your BRAINS!



    I’m not sure how a Groupon voucher works, but with the version sold on the main Go Los Angeles Card website you get the choice of either using your pass on the free smart phone app, or printing out the pass at home. Once you use it the first time it is validated and you then can use it for the time you paid for. I’d guess that the Groupon version would work the same, but I’m not sure. Have a great trip. -Roger

Chris says:

Hi Roger,

This is Chris writing from Singapore.

I read through your article and find your sharing are very helpful and this has made me decided to give the GO Los Angeles Card a try for my trip in LA this coming May-2018.

I am unsure the following questions had been answered before and if you can help in this case.

Fyi, i tried to purchase the GO Los Angeles Card online, however, i encountered the following error message.

We are sorry, but the transaction could not be processed on your card. Please check your payment information or try another card.

I encountered the same problem with 3 different credit cards from different banks and i did checked with the banks too saying there is no problem with my credit cards.

I then called the Customer Care of the Smart Destinations that provide the online platform for the online purchase of the GO Cards. They checked their systems and cannot tell what exactly went wrong and just responsed to me mentioned there were “Security flag” shown in my credit cards’ purchase attempts. However, they cannot tell what exactly were the issue??!!

The Customer Care then offered me saying they can do the purchase on-behalf of me but i have to provide my credit card information to them over the phone which i refused to do so due to security concerns from my end.

I was wondering if you came across this kind of questions before and if you can share some idea on how i can proceed with the purchase?

Apparently, i prefer to do online purchase as i am now given the extra 10% discount, which i do not think i can get that if i do an onsite purchase. 🙂



    I’m glad this article has helped and I think you’ll be happy with the Go Los Angeles Card. I haven’t heard of this sort of credit card issue with this program before, but I’ve experienced it myself several times when trying to make international purchases. It’s surprising coming from Singapore, which is obviously one of the richest and least fraud-prone countries in Asia. It could be that if you tried again it will work? And this is more of a personal thing, but I am not fearful of giving my credit card details over the phone when I’m calling someone specific. At least here in the USA, fraud of this nature is extremely rare and it would be easy to report it to our credit card company and get it taken off our bill right away. I hope it works out for you. -Roger

Keao says:

With the Go card, are you able to upgrade to the flash pass at Magic mountain, if you pay for it seperately?



    I checked on the Go Card site and the Magic Mountain site and I didn’t see anything about that, but I’m almost sure you can buy the Flash Pass on your own since it’s totally separate from the main admission. Basically, to use the Flash Pass you have to get into the park on your own, and I don’t see any reason why you couldn’t use it this way since they are sold as a separate transaction. The Go Los Angeles Card is very popular so I’m also pretty sure there would be a note on one or both websites if for some reason it wasn’t eligible for the Flash Pass thing. Have a great trip. -Roger

umer says:


I really didnt understand the point that when you buy 1,3,5 or 7 day pass they are valid for 2 weeks?

so i buy 3 days pass, i don’t have to worry about using in 3 consecutive days, i have 2 weeks to use that so how come it is called 3 day pass when i have 14 days to use it?

Regards, Umer



    It is a bit confusing, but it’s also a great feature. For example, on the 3-day pass you can use it on three separate days over a 14-day period. So you can go to Universal Studios on a Monday and then Tuesday go to the beach (not using the Card) and then Wednesday go to Madam Tussaud’s and taking a bus tour and seeing a couple other things and then Thursday you can take the day off and on Friday go to Knott’s Berry Farm. So in that example you’d use the pass for three days over the course of 5 total days. So you only activate each day of eligibility once you use it on that day. -Roger

Erin says:

Hi Roger,

After a whole lot of research and debating, I think we are going to purchase the 2 day card from Costco here in Canada. It is $147 for adults in Canadian dollars, which is really good value – about $110 USD.

My questions for you…


Warner Bros Studio Tour (9:00 am)
Dolby Theatre® Guided Tour
Hollywood Movie Star Homes Tour or suggestion?
TLC Chinese Theatre
Madame Tussauds Hollywood (I have read online (and once here) that if we go in before 5:30 pm to get our tickets we can go back in later in the evening after the 5:30 pm cut off so we’d actually do this at the end of our day/in the evening).

Our kids are 15 and 12. We plan on taking Uber or Lyft.

Based on that, what do you think about the above itinerary? We are staying at the Loews Hollywood.

We would use our second day of the GO pass for the San Diego Zoo later during our trip.

We used rewards points for 4 Universal Passes and will be going to Universal on Sunday. I realize Monday is probably a better day, but we are heading to the Anaheim area on Monday – unless you think we should go to Anaheim later in the day Monday and do Universal early Monday? I’m doubtful we will spend a full day there, thinking 4-5 hours?

Lastly, our son is really tall. Taller than his 15 year old sister. Are we going to run into problems getting him a child’s pass? I don’t want to carry his passport with us while we are sightseeing. Thoughts?

Thanks for your help!



    That Saturday sounds like a busy day and I think I’d skip the Movie Star Homes Tour. It’s been a long time since I’ve been on one of those, but I’m pretty sure the homes tend to be of stars of a bygone era or former homes of stars you might know. It’s still interesting to see Beverly Hills mansions, however I think many people are still disappointed a bit. If you skipped that I think you’d have time for everything else on your list. As for going into Madam Tussauds after 5:30pm, I’m not sure about that and I doubt it’s an official policy. In other words, you might be able to do it, but I am not sure and I certainly can’t confirm it.

    Uber and Lyft should be a good option and it will save you time and money parking as well. Loews is a fantastic hotel with a perfect location, so that should work well too.

    Most people go to Universal for a whole day and there is plenty to keep you entertained for a whole day. If you are just planning 4 or 5 hours that should work, but traffic to Anaheim in the afternoon is usually pretty bad (it gets worse the later you go).

    As for the age limit on the Child tickets, I’m not sure how strict they are, though my guess is that you should be okay. I know typically those are honor-system situations and as long as your son doesn’t look much older than 12 I’d think you’ll be fine. I hope that helps. -Roger

Erin says:

That does help, thanks so much! We will skip the house tour and will try to hit everything else on that list. Having the SD Zoo on the Los Angeles pass is a bonus, and makes it well worth it for us. I appreciate your research on this, and having read through all the comments I know I’m not the only one. I’ll report back after we go to let you know how it went! 🙂

Stasea says:

Hello Roger,

I’m a little upset that I am just finding out about this card just 3 days before my trip. But I am also happy that I saw this before I left to go to LA.

I will be going to LA on Thursday with my daughter and 3 grandson’s ages 7, 2, and 2 months. We will be there from Thursday afternoon until Sunday evening. I was thinking of get either the 2 or 3 day card.

But my thing is my son’s both work for Universal Studio’s and can get 30% off tickets so I want to know would that be worth it or should I just purchase the 3 pass. Which way would it make much of a difference.

I want to get the best I can for a great experience for my family so you help is greatly appreciated. Also where is the best place for me to purchase this cards in LA or online?

Thank you, again in advance for any help you can give me.

Stasea S.



    The benefit of the 3-day Pass seems to be mostly in the free ticket to Universal, so it may not be worth it for you. Most people spend the entire day in Universal and even if you leave by 5pm or so you’ll be tired and there aren’t too many other things you can do. So it’s really a matter of adding up the price of a 3-day pass and comparing it to a 2-day pass with a 30% discount on Universal admission. You are getting the same thing in both cases, so I’d do whichever is cheaper. Have a great trip. -Roger

Nathalie says:

Hi Roger, just want to say thanks for all the great advice you’ve given, it has been really helpful. My girlfriend and I are planning a vacation to California on September 25th 2018. We are staying there for 5 days and I wanted to get your opinion on our plan. Maybe you can help us figure out which destinations are closer to each other so we can plan it more effectively. So to start, I’ve seen someone mention the 4-day pass at Costco so we will be purchasing that and using uber as transportation.

We come into Los Angeles at 12:30 and Plan on checking in and leaving our hotel around 2 o’clock. We will be staying at the Dream Hollywood hotel, it’s fairly close to some sightseeing attractions so its a plus.

– Santa Monica pier rides & games
– Santa Monica aquarium
– Perrys bike rental.

Is it possible to do all of that in one day?

Do you know which rides are the most popular?

– OUE Skyspace
– California Science Center
– Hollywood Stars
– Hop on and off tour
– TLC theatre
– Madame Tussaud
– Dolby theatre
Would u recommend any other pretty cool places we can visit along the way? Do you think that’s possible to fit all of that together?

On our fourth day, we pack our bags and visit San Diego, where we would be staying at the Hard Rock hotel. That morning we would like to visit the San Diego Zoo. Now is there a difference between the San Diego Zoo and the San Diego safari zoo? If so does our pass cover the safari? We would really love to go there instead of the zoo. would be better off purchasing the three day pass instead? Also one more thing! We want to bike our way to the Hollywood sign, I believe the pass is covered by the Hollywood bike tour, should we squeeze that in? Thanks for all your feedback and support!



    I’ll try to help if I can. You will be able to spend time on the pier and see the aquarium in an hour or two, and I think a bike rental for 2 or 3 more hours should be enough so I think that day works well as long as you get there around when you are planning.

    I don’t know which Universal Studios rides are most popular, though I’m sure there are blogs and it with all that information.

    I think Thursday looks like a busy day already and I don’t have anything to add. In fact, since most of those are close together I would make sure you are doing the ones that interest you most before the others because you might run out of time or energy. And if you do the bus tour it’s best to start as early as possible because traffic tends to get worse as the day goes on. They are both included in the Go San Diego Card, but the Los Angeles Card only gets you into the zoo. Your hotel is much, much closer to the zoo as well, and even an Uber would be pretty expensive to the Safari Park so I think the zoo is a better choice.

    The Hollywood sign hike and bike is new and I don’t know much about it. But it looks pretty cool so hopefully you have time. I didn’t know you could bike to the sign, and the car traffic up that hill has gotten terrible so I hope it is a good experience. -Roger

    The San Diego Zoo is close to downtown San Diego and the ocean, while the San Diego Zoo Safari Park is about 50 km away and it’s inland. They are run by the same people, but require separate admission

Sheila says:

my family including our 17 and 10yo boys are planning 5 days in los angeles and i am considering the go card and could use some advice. we arrive around 730am and dont check into our place til around 3/4pm so thought we would drive to santa monica first.
we definately plan to spend a day at universal and id love to include pictures around melrose of murals..maybe the museum of illusion, long beach, venice beach and hollywood wax/downtown. id like at least some relaxation on a beach even a half day. id be open to a tour or tv taping if time allows. im worried about traffic and best times to travel and structure our visit. id love any insight on how to best structure between these places and using the go card..also how do i use them for cruises and tours do i mention the card ahead when scheduling?



    Yes, traffic in Los Angeles is always something to consider, but generally it moves pretty well from about 9am until about 3pm and then starts slowing down through 7pm or so in those areas. It’s always a bit of a crap shoot though, as one stalled car can create a ripple effect that slows everyone down for an hour or more. My best advise is to try to plan most or all of your driving for that period between 9am and 3pm. From LAX to Santa Monica leaving at 8:30am or so should be pretty easy because those freeways move pretty well.

    I’m happy to give you more specific advice if you are wondering about which order to do things in. Generally speaking, the key to getting the best use out of these Go Cards is to try to arrive at the more popular attractions right around when they open in the morning. You can usually get right in and also park pretty close. I’m sure you’ll have a great trip and feel free to ask more specific questions if you have them. -Roger

Mint says:

Hi Roger

May i know celebrity tour is include in GO LA card??

Paula says:

Hi Roger,
Your feedback on the Go LA card is great. I’ve been reading all the comments. We have purchased a 7-day pass, for 2x adults and 2x children. We are travelling from NZ, so will be using public transport/Uber. I’m making the most of the 2 week period of use, and using Day 1 at the San Diego Zoo, then we are going to Disneyland for 6 days, then heading over to Hollywood to stay at the Orchid Suites. My other days planned is this;
Day 2 – Madam Tussaud’s and Hollywood Star Homes Tour
Day 3 – Dolby Theatre, Hollywood Museum and possibly get to the LA Zoo
Day 4 – Universal Studios
Day 5 – Walking Tour to Hollywood Sign/Observatory, Warner Bro’s Studio Tour
Day 6 – Science Centre, Natural History Museum and possibly Grammy Museum
Day 7 – Santa Monica Pier , Aquarium and Bike Hire
Following day we have to relax before flying out in the evening.

I would like to reserve some of the activities before leaving NZ, do you know if I request a reservation earlier whether this will activate my card? Appreciate also if you would recommended anything in particular I may of missed, we can doing whale watching in NZ easy enough 🙂

Thanks, Paula



    This sounds like an amazing trip and I’m very impressed by your itinerary. I’ve used many of these city cards and they always activate when you use them to enter the first attraction, so it seems pretty much impossible that reserving a time would start it. Obviously you’d reserve a time for when you’ll actually be in Los Angeles, and I’m sure this is a common thing for people to make reservations well before using the card, so you should be fine.

    Your list of activities each day looks very realistic. Sometimes people try to schedule something else on the same day they go to Universal, and that rarely works because most people prefer to stay at Universal the whole day, but it looks like you’ve got your things all grouped together in a very efficient way that you won’t even be spending too much time in freeway traffic. In other words, very well done. I’ll be happy to try to answer questions if you have them. -Roger

Paula says:

Hi Roger,
Thanks very much for your positive feedback, I’ve been trying to do as much homework before our trip as possible. I do have one LA related question I’ll try out with you! We have ordered snow ski gear from the US before, as it’s much more price competitive, while we are there we hoped to check out some ski shops, so is there any ski shops you know off and recommend in LA? I appreciate winter sports is not really something that anyone relate’s LA too!
Regards, Paula

lily says:

very informative information. thanks Roger for your time and all the feedback’s

Becs says:


Am wondering if one day is enough at Universal Studios in very early September – or should I get a two day Universal pass and not do the Go pass.

Will have two teenage boys with me. Also is a 5 day park hopper enough time to do Disneyland and California Adventure ?

Will also do hop on hop off bus / walk of fame / Madame Tussaud’s/ Santa Monica pier . Anything we should definitely not miss doing ? Boys want to do San Diego zoo but not sure as won’t have a car – public transport / taxis only – and I hear it’s a distance away .

Thanks heaps



    It’s tough to be sure of some of these answers. I grew up a few miles from Disneyland so I went a few times each year and one day in the park was always exhausting to me, even in my youth. The same was true with all of the other theme parks, so I’m really only used to going one day and cramming in as much fun as possible. But I know that many people do enjoy spending multiple days in each park. Personally, I think if you have limited time in the Los Angeles area that I’d try to do Universal in one long day. They have a few rides, but it’s mostly shows and you’ll be able to see the ones that look most interesting on your first day.

    Spending multiple days in Disney or Magic Mountain is a bit different because those are mostly rides and it can be fun to ride the best ones over and over.

    I think your plan looks quite good. There are quite a few included attractions within walking distance of Madame Tussauds, so if you time it right it’s usually possible to hit quite a few things there in a short time. You should be able to get around pretty easily with Ubers or Lyfts and maybe a bit of public transportation.

    The San Diego Zoo is the best zoo on the west coast, but it’s about 100 miles away and those freeways often have traffic in both directions. If you had a car it would be easy enough to get down there and come back, but without a car I don’t think it would be worth the effort. I hope this helps. Let me know if you have any other questions. -Roger

cedric says:

Just want to thank you for all the infomation! This is by far the best resource on this topic. I’m about to go purchase now lol

Sue says:

Great site, good to get advice from a local! I’ll be in LA between Christmas and New Year, we want to see Universal (one day), the Hollywood sign and Hollywood area. It looks like with the Go pass, the HoHo is only good for one day, is that enough ?



    Yes, I think one day on the hop-on, hop-off bus is enough. My advice is to get on it and probably stay on a whole loop. The tours are interesting, but they usually don’t work too well as transportation between attractions because they can be a bit slow. If you wan to hop off again at one of the next couple stops, it can work well, but if the stop you want to get off at is 6 or 7 stops away it can be frustrating to have to wait for all the stops in the middle. Also, at some stops not many people get off so there are not always good seats for those who get on there.

    I’ve taken dozens of HOHO tours and I’m always glad I did them, and also glad that it’s over so I can move around freely (with Uber or a rental car or on foot or whatever). Best of luck. -Roger


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