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TapuTapu at Universal’s Volcano Bay – complete guide

In the days leading up to Universal’s Volcano Bay, we’re working on creating this page. Check back for frequent updates and be sure to join our Universal Facebook Community.

What is a TapuTapu at Volcano Bay?

On this page in our OI Center, you’ll learn about TapuTapu, the wearable device given to every guest at Universal’s Volcano Bay water theme park. TapuTapu is the key behind Universal Orlando’s goal of no lines at the new park. This wristband will allow visitors to not only hold their spot in virtual lines for rides, but also interact with the villages found inside Volcano Bay.

How much does a TapuTapu cost at Volcano Bay? How do I get one?

TapuTapu is included with your Volcano Bay park admission. As you enter the gates of the park, you’ll receive the wristband device. However, it should be noted that, unlike Disney’s MagicBand, you will have to surrender your TapuTapu when you leave Volcano Bay for the day.

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What can I do with TapuTapu at Universal’s Volcano Bay?

A few uses for TapuTapu have been announced. We’ll cover these, and then we will get into some of the other possibilities based off of the device.

Universal's Volcano Bay TapuTapuHold your place in line using TapuTapu at Volcano Bay

The most prominent advertised use for TapuTapu is by far to hold your place in line for the rides. All rides at Universal’s Volcano Bay will have a Virtual Line – in other words, guests will enter the line for whichever attraction they’d like to ride by tapping their wristband. When it’s time to ride, your wristband will vibrate and notify you.

(We should note here that Universal has quietly announced, in the form of fine-print details for the renting of private cabanas at the water park, that visitors will be able to both book and modify their Virtual Line reservations from within the comfort of their cabanas. Our sources, however, have cast some doubt on this possibility, as they have yet to hear anything about this – which might mean nothing or might mean everything. We’ll keep you updated as we find out more – or, ideally, as Universal officially announces more.)

Interact with the environment using TapuTapu at Volcano Bay

Another feature promoted greatly is the ability for guests to interact with the environment around them using their TapuTapu. Not much has been shared about the interactive elements, outside of guests being able to use the device to set off water jets and “dazzling lighting effects.”

Interactivity at Universal's Volcano Bay using TapuTapu
Interactivity at Universal’s Volcano Bay using TapuTapu

Rumored Capabilities

It’s widely believed that the technology behind TapuTapu is something called Prism from a company known as Accesso. Accesso is a technology company that has worked with Universal in the past, supplying the devices for their Q-Bot program inside both Universal Studios Florida and Islands of Adventure.

The Prism, which was unveiled in November 2016, has several capabilities that have yet to be mentioned by Universal.

Payments: Prism devices have Near Field Communication (NFC) technology within them. If Universal wanted, it could enable this inside of TapuTapu to allow guests to wander around Volcano Bay without the need for a wallet or cash. (And, indeed, our sources have backed up this very possibility.)

Messaging: Universal will be able to send you messages on your TapuTapu using Bluetooth built into the device. While this is to be expected for things like notifying you that it’s your turn to ride the attractions, the company can take it a step further, if it wishes.

For example, you could be walking by a food stand within Volcano Bay and receive a notification on your TapuTapu that you’re eligible to receive $2 off Chocolate Pineapple Upside Down Cakes. Another possibility would be for the management to be able to send you a notification if they choose to extend park hours. It’s completely unknown if Universal will choose to utilize this functionality, but it’s there if it wants to.

Photography: Again, no indication if Universal will use the functionality yet, but the Prism (TapuTapu) device can automatically tag your ride and park photographs and add them to an album. If this sounds familiar, it’s because this is a feature in Disney’s MagicBands – and one that we’d be surprised to not see come to fruition at the water theme park.

Accesso Prism (via accesso.com)
Accesso Prism (via accesso.com)

Access: TapuTapu has the capability to be used for opening lockers and hotel room doors. You’ll turn in your TapuTapu at the end of the day, so we can rule out opening hotel room doors like MagicBands. However, using your new wristband to open lockers is a distinct possibility.

Intelligence: While it may never be advertised, giving each guest a TapuTapu allows Universal to collect guest “journey information” in real time, which can help operators run the new park as smoothly as possible.

How durable is TapuTapu? What if I have allergies?

Your TapuTapu will be extremely durable. Beyond being waterproof (duh), it features a touch screen 32MM high resolution LCD display protected by Gorilla Glass. The band is hypoallergenic.

Speaking of the technical specifications, the device also has a reinforced housing, a vibration notification motor, and a battery that allows for over 200 days of park usage.

We have a lot more information on Universal’s Volcano Bay. Choose the next page you wish to visit in the index below.

OI Universal Center » Universal’s Volcano Bay