Universal Orlando raising minimum wage to $15 an hour

ORLANDO, Fla. — Universal Orlando Resort announced Thursday that it will raise its minimum wage to $15 an hour beginning late next month.

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The current minimum wage is $13. The new rates, which will become effective on June 27, will give more than 18,000 of the Florida theme park’s employees a pay boost, WFTV reported.

Universal’s announcement means that its employees will receive a pay hike before workers at rival theme park Walt Disney World, according to Theme Park Insider. Employees at Disney’s theme park in Central Florida will see a minimum pay raise to $15 in October.

The pay raise at Universal “will impact full- and part-time hourly positions as well as entry-level salaried roles,” the company said.

“We are excited about our future and we want team members who will be excited to be part of that journey,” John Sprouls, executive vice president and chief administrative officer for Universal Parks & Resorts, said in a statement. “This is about taking care of both our current team members and those who will be joining our team. We know a great guest experience begins with our team members, and we will continue to provide the best work experience we can.”

The company said it is currently hiring thousands of full-time and part-time employees for the summer, the television station reported.

Under the new base pay rates, some employees who make more than $15 per hour will be paid more, depending on how long they have worked at Universal, WFTV reported.

“This is about taking care of both our current team members and those who will be joining our team,” Universal spokesman Tom Schroder said in a statement. “In addition, we are actively recruiting new team members and we are working hard to be the best employer in the marketplace when it comes to wages, benefits and work environment.”