Epcot is my favourite Disney World park and has been since I was a child. I’ve learnt so many secret Epcot tips in my time, and I’m spilling them all today!
Epcot has a bit of a reputation of being the adult park, but Disney is working hard to create a more family friendly park and draw more kids and parents to it.
And with the push to bring more families to the park, Epcot is busier than ever.
You need to know the Epcot tips and tricks on this list to maximize your time in the park.
These Epcot tips save you money, time, and steer you towards some hidden truths about the park.
It is your one-stop guide to conquering Epcot and having a Magical Day!
1. No Need to be at the Park for Rope Drop
If you’ve read any of my other Disney World guides, you know I love rope drop and tell you to get up early for rope drop as much as possible.
Epcot is the only Disney World park where being at the park for rope drop is not necessary.
Let your Epcot day be your sleep in day!
I suggest arriving at the park between 10am and 11am. There will be lines at the most popular attractions, but that is what Fastpass+ is for!
The World Showcase doesn’t open until 11am, so if you’re at the park for rope drop, you kind of run out of things to do once you’ve ridden Frozen Ever After, Soarin’, and Test Track.
So, my suggestion is to either sleep in on your Epcot park day or hit up another park for their rope drop and head over to Epcot mid-morning.
2. Be Internet Safe
This is an unconventional Epcot tip, but it may be the most important one on the list!
You need to be internet safe when you’re at any Disney World park or hotel.
You’re hooked into a public wifi network that thousands of other people are connected to as well.
That puts you at risk of having your online personal information and data stolen.
99.9% of the people who connect to Disney wifi are using it in the same way you are, but it only takes one person who is interested in hacking phones and stealing personal data to ruin your day.
How awful would it be to find out your credit card information was stolen while you’re at Disney and have to deal with calling the bank and cancelling all your cards?!?!
The only way you can protect your personal online information and data is by installing a VPN on your devices.
A VPN essentially puts an invisible forcefield around your devices that hackers can’t get through.
It makes using public wifi as safe as using your home wifi where you’re the only person who knows the password.
My Favourite VPN
I’ve used a lot of different VPNs over my years of travel.
And hated every single one until I discovered NordVPN.
It is the quickest VPN on the market, which is why I love it so much!
I’ve personally used NordVPN for over three years now!
Not only is NordVPN super fast, but it is also very affordable!
The price per month on a two-year plan is less than the price of a single latte at Starbucks!
There isn’t an excuse for not protecting your online data while travelling. It is just an unnecessary risk you don’t need to take!
My philosophy is that if you can afford to travel, you can afford to protect your online privacy by installing a VPN on your devices!
3. France and Norway Open Earlier than the Rest of the World Showcase
Okay. I’ll admit that this headline is a bit misleading.
Not everything in Norway and France is open before 11am when the World Showcase opens, but the most important stuff is!
If you’re unfamiliar with how the opening of Epcot works, the World Showcase opens at 11am, and the other parts of the park open earlier in the morning.
The exact opening time depends on the day, so be sure to check your times guide or the Disney World website!
There are two exceptions to this 11am opening rule though:
- Frozen Ever After in Norway and
- Les Halles Bakery in France
Both of these locations open at the same time Future World and the non-World Showcase parts of the park opens.
This means you can get in line for Frozen Ever After as soon as you enter the park or grab a lovely French breakfast before starting your day.
Technically, you’re supposed to head straight to either Frozen Ever After or Les Halles because the rest of the World Showcase isn’t open.
But I wouldn’t judge you if you stopped to take a few photos of the World Showcase while it is empty!
4. Hit Up Garden Grill for Breakfast
This may seem like the oddest of all the Epcot tips on this list but hear me out!
Garden Grill is a restaurant in The Land Pavilion that offers character dining.
You get to hang out with Mickey, Pluto, Chip, and Dale.
It is super fun and cute.
But that’s not the best part!
The best part is that the food is fantastic and every time I’ve been there for lunch, it has been super quiet.
I’m talking maybe ten tables in the entire restaurant were filled!
This gives you more time to interact with the characters, and you get to see each character more than once during your meal.
You never feel rushed, and you can enjoy your meal in relative peace and quiet.
If you’ve ever done character dining before, you know that it tends to be a loud and chaotic scene!
As I mentioned, the food is delicious!
You get all the classics: Mickey waffles, potatoes, bacon, sausage, and so on.
But the star of the show is without a doubt the cinnamon pull aparts! You’ve been warned that they are highly addictive!
The food is served family style, which means it is brought to your table, so you don’t have to get up and deal with a buffet.
You can get refills on whatever food you want and eat as much as you want!
It is by far my favourite character dining experience in Epcot and one of my favourites in all of Disney World!
Oh! And the fresh fruit and vegetables are all grown in the greenhouse in The Land Pavilion!
5. Set a Budget and Stick to It
This and being internet safe are probably the two most important Epcot tips on this list.
If you’re only paying attention to a few of my Epcot tips, let this be one of them!
It is so easy to spend a lot of money at Epcot without realizing it.
A snack here, a festival treat there, doesn’t seem like much, but you’ll be shocked when you look at your credit card statement the next day!
If there is any park where you really need to set a budget and stick to it, it is Epcot.
Especially if you’re sampling a bunch of festival food!
One of the best ways to stick to your budget is pre-load a certain amount of money onto a Disney gift card and just use that while you’re at Epcot.
Don’t pull out your credit card or tap your Magic Band at all! Just rely on your pre-loaded gift card.
This will force you to stick to your budget!
Once the money on your gift card is gone, you’re done spending for the day.
You don’t want to get yourself in a financial hole because you weren’t paying attention and went way over budget having too much fun at Epcot!
6. Anna and Elsa Normally Have a Short Wait Time
This is probably the most secret and hidden of all the Epcot tips on this list!
Anna and Elsa are hugely popular characters and everybody wants to meet them!
They hang out in the Norway Pavilion right next to the Frozen Ever After ride.
The posted time at the entrance normally says between 30 and 60 minutes.
Every time I’ve jumped in line, I’ve gotten to meet Anna and Elsa in about 10 minutes!
Now, I can’t guarantee that you’ll have the same luck I’ve had.
But, from my experience, the wait time posted at the entrance is quite a bit longer than the actual wait time.
If you don’t like lines and are hesitant about waiting 30 or so minutes, I suggest jumping in line.
It may be a quick wait, and if it isn’t, you can always leave the line and get on with your day.
The one time I don’t suggest you take this risk is if you have to hurry for a Fastpass+ reservation.
It isn’t worth the risk of missing out on a ride!
But, if you have some free time, hop in that line because you might be amazed at how quickly you get to meet the iconic ladies of the Frozen franchise.
7. Pass on the Night Show Fastpass+
I’m never not shocked that the evening firework show at Epcot is considered a first tier Fastpass+ option!
The nighttime firework show at Epcot is good, but it isn’t worth spending your one and only tier one Fastpass+ on.
I always suggest you use your tier one Fastpass+ on Soarin’, Frozen Ever After, or Test Track.
After you use your first three pre-booked Fastpass+ options, then go into the app and get a Fastpass+ for the nighttime show.
That is what I think is the best Fastpass+ strategy in Epcot.
I’ve never been at Epcot and not been able to get a same-day Fastpass+ for the nighttime show.
If you’ve visiting during the busiest times of the year (e.g. 4th of July), this strategy probably won’t work, but it will work 99% of the time.
8. Indulge in at Least One Table Service Restaurant
The food choices at Epcot can be overwhelming.
To put it lightly!
Between the food booth at festivals, all the quick service dining, and the table service restaurants, it is hard to decide what to eat.
One of the best Epcot tips I can give you is to eat at least one meal at a table service restaurant.
Preferably in the World Showcase.
The food is always outstanding, and it just doesn’t seem right to go to Epcot and not have a nice sit down meal.
Reservations go quickly so be sure to book your reservation 180 days in advance. Or as close to that as possible.
My personal favourite table service restaurant at Epcot is Teppan Edo. It is incredible!
9. Make Time to Explore the Festivals
Last but not least on the list of Epcot tips and tricks is to dedicate time to explore whatever festival is on while you’re at Epcot.
Because chances are pretty good that you’ll be there during a festival!
The festivals at Epcot are so much fun! They really increase the atmosphere of the park, and it would be a shame if you didn’t get to explore all they have to offer!
So, be sure to allocate some of your park day to exploring the festival.
Take in the food, entertainment, and shopping experiences.
It is well worth not rushing through the park and experiencing the festivals. It is always a new experience even if you’ve been to the same festival in years past.
Tips for the Perfect Solo Disney Trip
There are my top Epcot tips and tricks to help you plan the most magical day in the park.
There is so much to do at Epcot, and it is by no means only an adult park anymore. You’ll fall in love with the park no matter how old or young you are!
I hope the Epcot tips on this list give you a better idea of what to expect on your next trip to Epcot.
And potentially save you some money! We all know how expensive Disney can be.
If you were on the fence about visiting Epcot, I hope this post swayed you to give the park a try.
It is unlike any other theme park in the world, and I personally don’t think any trip to Disney World is complete without exploring Epcot.