Now that you know you’re going to Disney, you need a game plan to efficiently tackle each of Disney’s parks! Families and EPCOT go hand-in-hand, especially since many of the rides are perfect for everybody from tiny toddlers to older grandparents. It’s the place for good times and wholesome fun.
But how do you choose where to go when you have a bunch of rambunctious tots or impatiently sighing teens? This is where Disney’s magical Genie+ feature comes to the rescue.
Genie+ will transport you to the front of the queue for an additional fee. The only problem? It only covers a select few rides, but don’t worry, because we’ve put together a list of the best rides to use Genie+ at EPCOT.
What is Disney Genie+?
Guests often confuse Genie for Disney Genie+, so let’s start by understanding the difference between the two.
Both of these are recently introduced services made available through the My Disney Experience app. Disney Genie is a trip-planning service available for free to all visitors, whereas Disney Genie+ is a paid feature that lets paying customers bypass long lines at select rides by way of a separate entrance called the Lightning Lane.
This facility will help you save time by allowing you to reserve a slot beforehand. All you have to do then is show up on time and hop right on!
You can purchase Disney Genie+ either as an add-on with new tickets and packages or as a single-day purchase if you’re an existing ticket holder.
Important Things To Note About the Best Rides To Use Genie Plus at Epcot
- In all instances, Genie+ can now only be bought from midnight of the day you are going to the park.
- Prices vary depending on demand and on crowd.
Lightning Lane services can be opted for in two ways; as an a la carte purchase for individual rides, or through Disney Genie+. While an a la carte purchase limits you to two individual lightening lane (ILL) rides a day, Genie+ Lightning Lane lets you use this feature unlimited times in one day for eligible rides.
ILL rides are not part of Genie Plus so you can mix and match.
However, one limitation that Disney places on genie+ reservations is that guests are required to finish one Lightning Lane selection before booking the next one.
Select the earliest available booking (don’t worry, it’s cancelable at any time) for one of the rides that accept genie+ at EPCOT, get on the ride, and then it’s on to the next! Keep in mind that a la carte purchases are available to all visitors, both Genie+ users and others.
Genie+ and Individual Lightning Lane Cheat Sheet
Anybody can use the Standby line aka regular entrance.
EXTRA ADD ONS -(Available on the same day only.)
- You can opt to buy just Individual Lightning Lane entry for up to two of the 4 rides listed if you do not wish to purchase Genie + (Park reservation required)
- You can also add on Genie+ from midnight of day of your park reservation.
An additional fee from $15 + tax, enables guests to use the Lightning Lane on select rides at each park.
Available to all guests to buy from midnight on day of park reservation.
Select rides are available in each park.
ILL rides are not available on Genie+
EXTRA ADD ONS (Available on the same day only.)
- Can Purchase Individual Lightning Lane
- Can go on Standby for rides not on Genie+
Individual Lightning Lane
Purchase Individual Lightning Lane entry for up to 2 experiences per day, one at a time. Guests may purchase this option with or without Disney Genie+ service.
Each experiences below, ILL Lightning Lane entrance is available once per day
Guests of a Disney Resort Hotel and other select hotels can make first selection at 7:00 AM. All other Guests can make their first selection when the park opens.
Magic Kingdom Park
- Seven Dwarfs Mine Train
- TRON Lightcycle Run
- Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind
Disney’s Hollywood Studios Experiences
- Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance
Disney’s Animal Kingdom
- Avatar Flight of Passage
Note: To use up to two ILLs you would currently need to Park Hop as each park only as one ILL ride available. You cannot use 2 ILLs on the same ride.
EXTRA ADD ONS ON THE DAY:
- Can Purchase Genie+
- Can go on Standby for rides
Lightning Lane slots are also subject to availability, so be sure to plan your itinerary accordingly! Another thing to keep in mind is that rates for individual ride selections vary based on the ride and time slot.
Disney Genie+ starts at $15 per day plus tax, per ticket depending on demand, which can and has pushed the price to $35. However, they are subject to availability and prices vary based on dates. For those willing to splurge a little, Disney Genie+ is a great choice for saving time and energy, especially on the more crowded rides.
For more information and more in-depth details on the differences between Individual Lightning Lanes and Genie Plus rides, read this article.
Best rides to use Genie Plus at Epcot
Frozen Ever After
Frozen Ever After is precisely where to begin your day. Why? A recreation of Elsa’s gift to Arendale’s citizens, this ride is perfect for pretty much anybody and everybody!
Kids, teens, and even adults who often burst into spontaneous dramatic renditions of “Let It Go” are sure to adore this ride. Since it has no height restrictions, it is one of the top must-visit rides for those visiting Epcot with their toddlers who are obsessed with everything Frozen.
Since the ride is part of the Early Entry at Epcot, it’s the perfect place to begin your day at Epcot with the Lightning Lane via Genie+. Make sure you set an early alarm to place your first booking at 7 a.m. This way you can place your second booking after the 2-hour wait when the park opens.
Head to the rope drop, turn left, and go past Test Track till you get to the Norway pavilion. Nestled in the World Showcase, this simple 6-minute boat ride brings to life the story of Elsa and Anna. But its popularity means that the queues are long, and the wait times can be even longer!
Play it smart and book the ride with Genie+ and Lightning Lanes as quickly as you can. This doesn’t just increase your odds of getting on faster, it also lessens the chances of cranky tantrums.
Bear in mind that while gentle, the ride includes a small forward drop and another longer but less deep backward drop. Another important thing to remember is that the ride doesn’t offer the Rider Switch option.
Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure
The latest Genie+ experience in Epcot, Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure draws in crowds of all ages and sizes (no size restrictions here!). Using cutting-edge technology, Disney successfully combines imagination and innovation to scale up every scene, letting you peek into life from a rat’s point of view.
Take a slow ride in a trackless ride vehicle and encounter spectacular 4-D ideographics, sights, sounds, and yes, even smells to give you the experience of being a rat trapped in a restaurant full of chefs and sous-chefs who are out to get you!
This immersive experience is sure to take your breath away, but do think twice about riding if you have family members with you who don’t enjoy dark, enclosed places, or are prone to motion sickness.
Remy sells out in moments, so save time and money by adding it to your Genie+ experience. Once you’re done with Frozen Ever After, or 2 hours have passed, it’s time to put those thumbs to the test.
Tap away to book your second Lightning Lane pass through Genie+. This way, you can arrive at the International Gateway from the Boardwalk resorts or via the Skyliner at Early Entry, head over to Frozen for rope drop, and then pop by Remy’s later in the day.
Those who love living life in the fast lane absolutely must add this to their list of rides with Genie+ rides! Exciting and fun, Test Track is the only thrill ride at EPCOT, making it the go-to ride for adventurous kids, tweens, and teens.
Also offered under Lightning Lane via Genie+, this is another high-priority ride to consider for your EPCOT ride list. However, those with toddlers and younger kids should know that the ride has a minimum height requirement of 40 inches (102 cm).
Parents don’t need to worry because rider switch is always an option. One cool thing about this ride is that apart from offering rider switch, it also has a single-rider line for more independent teenagers.
Based at World Discovery Land, this ride is part of Early Entry at EPCOT. Design your dream concept car, buckle up into the “SIM Car” and race it at speeds of 65 mph in a test run that extends outdoors. The simulation allows you to accelerate through rough terrain and hurdles along a circuit that includes inclement weather, curves banked at 50-degree angles, and climbing hills!
A great shared experience for the whole family, the thrills are at acceptable levels for even those that might otherwise be deterred from riding. Plus, if you’re a competitive family, check the scoreboard at the end to see who placed first and won bragging rights for the rest of the year.
Soarin’ Around the World
Discover a whole new world with one of EPCOT’s most classic rides: Soarin’ Around the World. Start your trip at the base of the ride in the lower level of the Land pavilion at World Nature. From here, you’ll embark on a journey that takes you through all the wonders of the world from the Eiffel Tower to the Pyramids!
Despite its recently added third theater, it’s still a smart place to use your Genie+ along with Lightning Lane. Rider switch is also a good feature to avail here if you have kids who are not tall enough to ride (at least 40 inches or 102 cm). And while it does not have a single-rider line, it is part of Early Entry at EPCOT, so visiting here first thing can help too.
The ride features a movie that is played on a large curved screen, so if the dark, sudden jumps, flashes, and loud noises are things your little ones like to avoid, consider sitting this one out. It’s also best avoided by those who fear heights and are prone to motion sickness.
Pro tip: Grab your seats in the top row to experience all the special effects without the distraction of legs hanging down from the other rows.
Mission: SPACE is for all the kids who “want to be an astronaut when they grow up”! A must-visit for space nerds young and old, this ride is basically a centrifuge that you sit inside of in order to pilot a mission to either the moon or Mars. The ride spins you quickly enough to simulate g-force and give you the feeling of actually being in space. (Note: Barf bags are available for emergencies)
Due to its moderate popularity, waiting times for this ride can range from non-existent on less crowded days to up to 60 minutes on packed days like the weekends or holidays. A Lightning Lane reservation on such days can be of great help.
Opt for the green lane (beginner) if you’re riding with younger kids and tweens who would prefer to go up into orbit in a simulated ride that only tilts and rolls back a little bit. The many fake switches and buttons to flip and jab will ensure riders stay entertained throughout the mission! Note that kids need to be at least 40 inches tall for this lane.
If your brave teen fancies a real challenge instead, pick the orange lane and hold on tight! The intense spinning in the simulator replicates intense maneuvers like lift-off on your trip to Mars. This lane is not suitable for kids under 44 inches, but is guaranteed to be an amazing ride experience for those who are tall (and brave) enough!
Living with the Land
From the middle of November to early next year, Living with the Land does a “Merry & Bright” overlay for Christmas. A nighttime attraction during the winter holidays, it’s usually a walk-on ride but is still covered by Genie+ too. The air-conditioned ride is one of EPCOT’s few hidden gems and is often overlooked, which makes it perfect for escaping the crowds and the Florida heat for a bit.
The twisting waterway takes you through multiple hand-built sets that illustrate the various ways humans plant and harvest food across the globe. The boat then winds through the Disney “living laboratories” greenhouses, where you watch how Disney utilizes ingenious techniques to raise and cross-breed their produce.
There is also a section on fish farming, and how they are using the by-product of fish farming to fertilize plants.
Take this gentle boat ride when you need a breather and just want to marvel at the beauty of nature and farming. It’s educational, fascinating, and has no age or height restrictions, making it a great place to introduce your family to agriculture cultivation at the happiest place on earth. See and learn about all sorts of different plants, fruits, vegetables, and fish that are eaten throughout the parks (farm-to-table).
Best Rides To Use Genie Plus at Epcot: Spaceship Earth
A fun and easy ride for kids of every age and size, Spaceship Earth is nothing short of iconic for the brief history it provides of – well, nearly everything! Incredibly entertaining and interactive, it conceptualizes man’s possible development in relation to the use of Earth’s resources. It showcases remarkable forethought by offering you a peek into our future society through an interactive experience.
This is a slow and family-friendly ride, but kids who are afraid of the dark will need extra reassurance. The good news is that the place comes alive at night with the entire sphere lit up in different patterns. And although it’s usually history buffs and adults who tend to enjoy the concept of this ride the most, it makes a great air-conditioned place to give weary little feet a rest.
Affectionately called the “golf ball”, Spaceship Earth is not only a great attraction but is also the symbol of Epcot so don’t forget to get a picture with the whole family here. It also has one of the most unpredictable wait times, so go ahead and use Genie+ when it gets too busy to access Lightning Lane.
Turtle Talk with Crush
Turtle Talk is not really worth using a Genie+ slot for unless you are super interested in attending this interactive show because of all the cute videos on social media. With Genie+ you get priority seating to witness the show, but the benefits are limited since the show almost always has a short wait time already!
With that said, it’s still an entertaining place to rush to when the weather gets too hot or too wet, making it worth a visit on a tiring day.
This funny and interactive session is a huge favorite among both kids and adults, but it’s usually the kids and their questions that are the real stars of the show. Crush does a great job of keeping everyone, including the adults, entertained with some subtle jokes and cheeky humor.
Journey Into Imagination
The likelihood of you needing Lightning Lane for this attraction is pretty much zero thanks to the incredibly short wait times, which is why it’s last on our list. However, this doesn’t mean it’s any less fun than the other attractions!
Journey Into Imagination is an exciting ride that engages all the senses and is especially amazing for younger audiences aged between 2-8 years.
Upon exiting the ride, you will walk through a hands-free play area for kids. Keep your camera ready to capture their delight as they jump from step to step to make different instruments play!
Best Rides To Use Genie Plus at Epcot: FAQs
Can you use Genie+ at Epcot?
Yes, Genie+ can be used to access Lightning Lanes for most rides at EPCOT during regular working hours.
Is it worth it to get Disney Genie Plus for EPCOT?
If you’re impatient, traveling with children, or have your heart set on riding both Frozen Ever After and Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure on the same day, Disney’s Genie+ is a real blessing. Plus, it’ll give you a lot more time to eat, drink, shop, and take in the sights at EPCOT.
When can I purchase Genie+?
You can purchase Genie+ between 12 a.m. and 7 a.m., right before the reservation process begins, on the day of your visit. Make sure you already have the My Disney Experience app downloaded and ready to use to access Genie+.
How Much Does Genie+ Cost?
The cost of Genie+ starts at $15 (excluding tax) but can go up to as much as $35 on peak days. Also, keep in mind that each person in the group needs Genie+ to access Lightning Lanes for Genie+ attractions.