A lot of us go to Epcot to eat our way around the world. However, don’t forget to stop and enjoy the rest of the park on your way! Epcot’s World Showcase is such an amazing, unique experience that we tend to spend a lot of time there, but Epcot is also home to some very incredible attractions!
In this blog post we will discuss booking your Fast Passes for attractions in Epcot, –and which ones you probably won’t need a Fast Pass for, and most importantly, how the Tier system works.
So, let’s start with the fact that I mentioned “Tier System”. Unfortunately, unlike the Magic Kingdom, you can’t just book a Fast Pass for all major attractions. Instead, Epcot has in place a “Tier System” which means you can choose 1 of the major attractions as a Fast Pass, and then 2 “minor” attractions.
The attractions we will review under the Tier System are: “Frozen: Ever After”, “Soarin'”, “Test Track” and “IlluniNations”. You get to choose one of these four attractions as a Fast Pass selection:
1 – Frozen: Ever After – Is anyone really surprised that this is the most popular ride in Epcot is Frozen related? Every child will be dragging their parent to this ride, and every Disney fan will be racing there! Frozen Ever After is the newest ride in Epcot, and has its home in the Norway Pavilion in the World Showcase. This is a slow moving boat ride (RIP Malestrom) that takes you through Arendelle with Anna, Elsa, Olaf and friends! This is a really cute experience, and it even takes your photo on the ride (to make use of your memory maker – See blog post Memory Maker? Or No Memory Maker?) to keep the memory alive forever! For more information on this ride, check out my post Frozen Ever After. You’ll be singing “Let it go!” for hours, not that you weren’t already!
2 – Soarin’ – Now that you’ve probably eaten your way around the world, why not fly around the world as well? Soarin’ is truly an amazing experience and a Disney World must-do ride. Soarin’ is absolutely stunning, as you “hang glide” over African plains, the Great Wall of China, and the Eiffel Tower in Paris, you’ll see the world here, and even smell the world! If you haven’t been on this attraction in a few years, definitely make time for it now. Soarin’ used to showcase just flying over California, but in 2016 was upgraded to “Soarin’ Around the World”, and is even more fun than it used to be!
3 – Test Track – This ride is so unique, and such a thrill – and every car lover’s dream! This ride has also recently been done over, and now given a more futuristic theme than it once had. Plus, the best part is, the line-up is now partially interactive, so you get to design your OWN car before getting on the ride. You get to choose the design, the speed, and even whether or not its eco-friendly. Once you board Test Track, you will go through a series of tests on your car, such as sudden stops, quick turns and last but definitely not least — speed. Your car will speed up to 64 miles/104.4 kilometers an hour, and then it will show you how it compares to others cars. So you can see if you are the fastest car and have bragging rights the rest of your trip!
4 – IllumiNations: Reflection of Earth – So rides aren’t your thing? That’s okay, IllumiNations is also available as a Fast Pass selection. IllumiNations is the beautiful nighttime fireworks and laser show every night around Epcot’s World Showcase, and using a Fast Pass on the fireworks show provides you with an amazing view. If you don’t want to use a Fast Pass on a fireworks show and are like me and would rather use them for rides, don’t worry! The show takes place over the lake, so there are so many places in all of the World Showcase that you can get a good view of the show. This show has been going on for 19 years now, and is something that you definitely can’t miss. You’ll see explosions, lasers, fireworks and beautiful music all choreographed perfectly together to create an experience you’ll remember forever.
So many great options, how can you possibly choose from those four? If you don’t like rides, Frozen (being slow moving) or IllumiNations are probably your go to. But don’t forget, Soarin’ isn’t a thrill ride, its an experience, it’s a stimulation ride and definitely worth seeing. I do have to stress right here how important that my boyfriend thinks it is for you to go on Test Track (and Fast Pass or not – he’s right! It’s a ton of fun!)
So now that you have decided which of the four major attractions you are going to pick, let’s look at the second tier selections. You can pick any of these as your two remaining Fast Passes for the day.
– Journey into Imagination with Figment
-Epcot Character Spot
-The Seas with Nemo and Friends
-Living with the Land
-Turtle Talk with Crush
-Pixar Short Film
-Mission Space (orange and green)
So let’s take a look at these ones. Let’s start with ones you shouldn’t probably need to use a Fast Pass on. The Pixar Short film is not Fast Pass worthy. Its a theater and it holds lots of people, so you probably will wait 5-10 minutes in general to get on this one. Turtle Talk with Crush is another attraction that can usually hold a decent amount of people and has low wait times, I think it’s important to point out however, if you have kids (or are Finding Nemo/Dory fans) Turtle Talk with Crush is super cute and interactive, as Crush talks to everyone!
Mission Space has two levels: Green and Orange. Green being a lower intensity ride (not Fast Pass worthy) and Orange being high intensity – extremely high intensity. The orange version is very easy to cause motion sickness, this is the one ride in all of Disney World that I don’t tend to recommend as its most likely to make you feel a bit under the weather after the ride.
Let’s look at second tier rides that you should book your Fast Pass for:
1 – Epcot Character Spot – This second tier definitely would fill up the fastest, so if you want a great photo opt with Mickey Mouse and friends, this is a great time for it! This Fast Pass you get to meet Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse and Goofy and get great pictures that will last a life time. When you are done getting a photo with these favorites, walk across the hall and get a few photos with Joy and Sadness from “Inside Out” and Baymax from “Big Hero 6”, don’t forget his fist bump!
2 – Journey into Imagination with Figment – Figment will always have a special place in my heart. Figment is at the heart of Epcot, as he is the “Figment” of your imagination. This ride has quite the following, you either love the Figment ride or you hate it. I always have loved Figment, as when I was little my mom would tell me all about “Figment” at Disney World when she used to describe to me “the most magical place on earth”, so needless to say, he’s always been dear to my heart. This ride generally doesn’t need to worry about a Fast Pass unless in peak season, but since you have less to choose from you can select it just in case. I’ve never seen more than a 10-15 minute wait.
4 – Spaceship Earth – If you can read this blog, thank the Phoenicians. If you don’t get the joke, you need to go on Spaceship Earth. It’s not a true trip to Epcot without enjoying a ride through the big ball itself! Enjoy this slow moving ride with the soothing narration of Judi Dench as she tells you a 15 minute story of how humanity has progressed since the dawn of time with our communication skills. This is a Disney World must-do as it is both an educational experience, and you get to say you were in the Epcot ball! There’s something about this ride that I never get sick of and I’ve even gone on it multiple times a trip! This second tier ride can get quite popular at times and can usually vary between a 5 minute wait and a 30 minute wait, so a Fast Pass can be recommended here.
5- Living with the Land – This is located in the “Land Pavilion” (makes sense, right?), and is a slow moving boat ride that is an educational experience. It takes you through the Epcot greenhouses and emphasizes on the importance of agriculture, and being environmentally friendly. The ride is about 20 minutes long and definitely interesting. When you’re done with the ride, grab a bite to eat from either the Sunshine Seasons or the Garden Grill in the Land Pavilion, they use the produce that you just saw in the greenhouses!
6 – The Living Seas with Nemo & Friends – This cute ride takes you on a journey under the sea with Marlin and Dory on their search for Nemo! This ride is a quick moving one as it is always in motion. You usually don’t need a Fast Pass for this ride as it’s usually a 5 minute wait, but you can always select it as a second Tier choice just in case if you would prefer this ride over others. My favorite part of this ride is that it ends in the Aquarium, so you get to watch sharks and fish also with your favorite friends from “Finding Nemo”! When you are done with this ride, make sure to check out the aquarium and all that it has to offer, the Manatees are my favorite, and they also do demonstrations with the dolphins to show how smart they are.
No matter what attractions that you choose, you will be sure to have an amazing day in Epcot. There are endless amounts of things to do, whether it be one of these rides, exploring Future World or the World Showcase. Epcot is sure to be a fun and educational day!
Let me know your favorite attractions at Epcot!
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