The VIP parking vs regular parking - how much of a difference is this?
If I need to leave in the afternoon and come back, will I have to pay for parking twice or can I get in with my first purchase on the same day?
I prefer the regular parking and park in the Jurassic lot at the top of the hill so we can walk through City Walk.
I doubt you could leave and come back. With the current system, this would allow drivers to give the parking pass to another driver in another car, since Universal doesn't keep track of the cars coming in or leaving.
Have fun! I suggest eating in City Walk instead of the park. Karl Strauss is my favorite restaurant there.
Actually, while I've never done it with their VIP parking, I know you have in and out privileges with their regular parking. So I'd imagine VIP would have the same policy. Just ask at the gate.
Their parking rates depend when you get there. If it's before 3pm, the prices are: Front Gate $30, Preferred $22, General $16. They also have Valet parking, $15 for 2 hours or less, $30 more than 2 hours. Check either website. for details, "Getting to the Park".
I've never personally done the Front Gate parking, but if it's the lot I'm thinking of, it is very very close to the main gate. But it's also an outdoor lot. I believe Preferred is as well, but I'm not positive. That may not make any difference to you, but just in case. General is definitely in a parking garage, but depending on which one, you may have to walk through most of CityWalk. Although that's not really a bad thing, to me.