9 Reasons an R.I.P. Tour at Universal's Halloween Horror Nights Is Worth Every Blood-Soaked Penny

If you like to be scared (or just try to push yourself out of your comfort zone), Universal Studios' Halloween Horror Nights is pretty much the best place to be. After the park "dies" down for the day (pun intended), it's transformed into a terrifying place where only the strong survive (seriously, if you're easily scared, you might need to leave early). Not only can you still ride your favorite attractions late at night, but there are haunted houses and scare zones to navigate (Note: there are usually chainsaws, clowns, and blood involved, so good luck). And this year, with a whopping 10 haunted houses, Universal Studios is really stepping up its game.

While going to HHN is awesome in any form, if you really want to experience it the right way, you need to splurge on a private R.I.P. tour. Universal offers regular R.I.P. tours, which give you things like front-of-the-line entry to each haunted house once, a pretour reception with appetizers, and access to exclusive cash bar locations throughout the park, but the private tour is what all horror fanatics really need. In addition to getting all the perks of the regular R.I.P. tour, the private one also gives you your own tour guide, unlimited priority entrance to all haunted houses, reserved seating at the Jabbawockeez show, private trolley transportation to the mazes, exclusive interactive themed photo ops and a special tour of the Universal backlot, a gourmet buffet dinner in the VIP lounge, access to exclusive lounges for drinks and desserts, and complimentary valet parking.

But I should warn you — once you do a private R.I.P. tour, you'll never be able to experience HHN any other way again. While it's definitely pricey (regular R.I.P. tours start at $160 per person, and you need to call Universal in order to price a private R.I.P. tour of up to 12 people), they're worth it to be able to choose how you want to spend your night instead of waiting in lines. Keep reading for all the reasons it's worth every blood-soaked penny.


You Don't Have to Wait in Any Lines

Wait times for most haunted houses can be 60+ minutes, but with a private R.I.P. tour, your guide will take you right up to the front and you go right in. Since there are so many houses to get through, this allows you to actually see them all instead of waiting in long lines and only getting to a few of them.


You Get a Really Awesome and Knowledgable Tour Guide

Our tour guide last year, Demi, was so awesome and made the night so much more fun. Before we entered any haunted house, she told us about the story behind it and any fun facts to go along with it. For example, for last year's Slaughter Sinema, she explained how that house was compiled of a bunch of different rooms that were ideas for previous haunted houses that just never came to fruition. Another fun fact: one of Universal's creative directors is from Carey, OH, and there were tiny references to his hometown throughout HHN (see slide 7).

So much time and thought goes into all of the small details for HHN, and with a private tour guide, you get to actually spot them and appreciate them all!


You Can Get Extra Up Close and Personal to Your Favorite Haunts

The actors in the scare zones that are scattered throughout the park love to have fun when they spot an R.I.P. tour walking through. During our tour, people with chainsaws chased us numerous times and a pack of killer clowns tried to convince us they were our new tour guides and to follow them instead.


You Get to Munch on Special Food in Special Areas

While the regular R.I.P. tour includes special appetizers at a closed-off cafe before you start your night, the private tour lets you go there whenever you want. We wanted to go straight into a few haunted houses and weren't hungry until later, and that was totally fine. And once there, the food is included and is SO good. The peanut butter and jelly cupcakes were to die for.

You also can stop at exclusive R.I.P. tour bars throughout the park for some liquid courage in between haunted houses.


You Get Behind-the-Scenes Access to the Park

A private tour also takes back the curtain a little bit so you can see how some of the Universal magic comes to life. After we rode Revenge of the Mummy, our tour guide took us on a walking tour inside the ride so we could see it from below and watch people whiz by.


You Have a Brave Leader Taking You Through the Haunted Houses

Nobody wants to go first when it comes to entering haunted houses (and if you do, you're a very brave soul). With a private tour guide, they always go first and hold up a little light to make sure you see where they are. It's very comforting in the sometimes pitch black.


You Get Priority Seating For Shows

Halloween Horror Nights features the Jabbawockeez show this year, and while you would usually have to wait in line and get a seat at the back, a private tour ensures you go right to the front with priority seating. You really can't beat that.


You Get to Do Things More Than Once

Because you don't have to wait in any lines, you can go through haunted houses (or go on rides) multiple times in one night. For the haunted houses, this is an awesome way to pick up on details you may have missed the first time through.


You Have the Best Time Ever

HHN is so much fun, and having a private tour guide just elevates that fun. You can to relax, eat, drink, and go at your own pace, because you have all night to do exactly what you want to do.