Is Visiting Epcot Worth It in 2020?

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Epcot is in the spotlight as major changes are on the way and festivals continue to add fun throughout the year. But what makes Epcot, Epcot? The true intent of Epcot, and whether or not the massive overhaul is welcomed, is a hot topic of conversation. Plus, throughout 2020 there will be construction walls practically in every corner of Future World. So, with all the changes and construction, is visiting Epcot worthwhile? I say “yes!” Let’s take a look at why.

It’s a World Showcase

Yes, there is the World Showcase – the section of Epcot that exhibits incredibly detailed pavilions that represent 11 different countries, but Epcot in its entirety is a showcase of the world. It pays homage to the arts as well as science. A visit to Epcot is to take in a sample of all the world’s wonders.

The story is our species and how our ability to communicate has directed our fate and that of that planet – all told during a slow moving ride inside the park’s icon. The story of the world’s oceans, it’s beauty, and diversity — yes, with a little help from Nemo and friends. The story of our ability to imagine and be creative is told at Journey Into Imagination. The story of the scientific method and its ability to make modern conveniences is told at Test Track. And the varied stories of our brethren across the globe are told in the architecture, the food, and the Cast Members.

To visit Epcot is to see that life, and our world, is beautiful.

©Rikki Niblett

More Entertainment than any other Park

Epcot is one part science and one part art. The representation of art at Epcot is just so exquisite at times. Each pavilion in World Showcase has at least one form of live entertainment.

Over the years, the acts has changed, but there continues to be entertainment you cannot find anywhere else, unless perhaps you visited the actual countries themselves. Often the sound of one country’s entertainment bleeds into another pavilion, or even across World Showcase Lagoon. To me this just adds to the festive atmosphere. Our world is lively and full of music.

There is so much entertainment at Epcot that I strongly recommend you view the schedule in advance so you can plan your day to include at least a few performances. My two personal favorites are Voices of Liberty (I tear up at every performance without fail) and Mariachi Cobre.  You can view the daily schedule of all the live entertainment at Epcot on TouringPlans, for free.

Mariachi Cobre

Epcot’s Food is Delicious

Fun fact: you can sample some of the world’s best cuisine even when there isn’t a festival. Lots of folks tend to wait until Epcot is having one of its many festivals to sample flavors from around the globe. But great food is available year round at Epcot. Each pavilion has at least one counter service location or snacks area where you can purchase small entrees or other bites, and beverages.

With 11 pavilions you can easily make your own food and beverage tasting event when there isn’t a festival happening. I recommend alternating between one food item at one pavilion then a beverage or sweet at the next pavilion. Chances are you’ll either spend the same as what you would to purchase sample size tastes during one of the festivals, or perhaps a little less, and you’ll be getting must larger portions.

If you ever have a craving for something specific you can use our free TouringPlans Menu Search to locate a specific food item like pasta, pretzels, tacos, and so on. You can use this feature to design your own food crawl around Epcot or all of Walt Disney World, really.

TouringPlans Menu Items Finder

The Diversity of Attractions

Epcot is full of diverse experiences. Culturally there are representations of 11 different countries, including individuals who are interning from their countries. Having the pavilions around one lagoon, sitting side by side, helps show what a diverse world we live in. But it’s not just the cultural diversity that makes Epcot worthwhile; it’s the wide range of attractions too.

Thrill seekers have a few options with Test Track and Mission:SPACE while low-key chill types like me have Living with the Land and Gran Fiesta Tour. Furthermore, there’s a variety of films throughout the park – with new versions on the way. There’s even walk-through exhibits and mini-museums in the Japan pavilion, Morocco pavilion, and more. And don’t forget Epcot is home to the second largest aquarium in the country!

Honorable Mention – Fun with Acronyms

My time as a Walt Disney World Cast Member led me to work in all four parks at one point or another, all the resorts, the Disney Magic and Wonder cruise ships, and even to be sent over to Disneyland for two weeks. I can say that some of my favorite memories as a Cast Member are from the time I worked in Epcot. Cast Members and guests alike have fun with creating new acronyms in place of Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow.

Here are some favorites:

  • Every Person Comes Out Tired
  • Every Paycheck Comes On Thursday
  • Every Parent Carries Out Toddlers
  • Eisner’s Polyester Costumes Of Torture (from the days of the Tapestry of Nations and Tapestry of Dreams parades)
  • Eisner’s Profitmaking Community Of Today
  • Every Place Construction Obstructs Tourists (our latest and greatest)
Bright clear day over Epcot's World Showcase
World Showcase Lagoon – Epcot

Right now, and for the immediate future, Epcot is a bit of a mess. Every week there are new construction walls and new demolition. But above it all, there really is no other theme park on the planet that matches Epcot for its ambitious task of showcasing all that the world offers. I believe I owe some of my creativity and my appreciation of the world in part to my visits to Epcot. I am fortunate to have visited many times in my thirty plus years on this planet. While I may never travel the world frequently, I know I can tap into its beauty, at least just a little bit, by walking through the gates of Epcot. So while 2020 may be a rough year for Epcot, it is still worthy of a visit.

Dani

Born and raised in the land of sunshine and dreams come true, Dani is a proud Orlando Native who loves sharing her hometown with others. She's worked in nearly all of Orlando's theme parks, on board Disney Cruise Line, and in hotel management. Follow her adventures on Twitter and Instagram @thisfloridalife

8 thoughts on “Is Visiting Epcot Worth It in 2020?

  • January 7, 2020 at 12:36 pm
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    For those actually wondering whether Epcot is “worth it” in 2020, it’s worth noting that, despite the huge mazes of construction walls weaving thru Future World, there is almost no impact on attractions. Spaceship Earth will go down some time soon for its overhaul, but otherwise, all attractions are up and running normally.

    Reply
  • January 7, 2020 at 12:37 pm
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    Thanks for the assist there, Andy. You’re absolutely right! Thanks for reading.

    Reply
  • January 7, 2020 at 1:26 pm
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    Thank you for the Epcot love. It is my families favorite park, even during construction. When do they plan to have these projects (Ratatouille, Guardians, Spaceship Earth) complete?

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  • January 7, 2020 at 6:32 pm
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    PadreMouse:

    Last I’ve heard is:

    Ratatouille – Summer 2020
    Guardians – By 2021; Disney Dish Podcast said the Imagineers are trying to make sure they hit the “open for 2021” promises for Guardians and Tron, possibly with soft openings in late 2020.
    Spaceship Earth – Should go down Spring or Summer 2020, uncertain how long until re-opens.

    Reply
  • January 7, 2020 at 11:19 pm
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    Pretty sure Disney Parks thought it stands for Eh, Put Crap Over There (and figure out a theme later)

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  • January 8, 2020 at 9:12 am
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    Of course, Epcot (Walt’s dream of Epcot), although a noble concept, could never have been marketable. Although the huge fenced area right smack dab in the middle of Future World (if it’s called that) is a bit of a hassle, Epcot remains (since the beginning) our favorite park–especially World Showcase which houses real adventures with real people from all over the world and the festivals! My favorite is about to appear so I’ll be heading back Wed/Thur after MLK holiday. The one real hassle for us is having to wait for Epcot bag check to open before we can grab a bus or monorail to do pre-11am stuff at another park. I hope open entry to those areas returns after construction is completed.

    Reply
  • January 9, 2020 at 8:52 am
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    I am hoping to eat at the new Space restaurant towards the end of February- I keep watching the reservation system to see if it is an option yet, but nothing. If still projected to open in February how will that work? Will ADR just activate the first day they open? Will it be walk-ups only? I am not familiar with how the opening of a new restaurant typically works in a park- any advice? Thanks!

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  • February 10, 2020 at 2:34 pm
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    I was at Epcot yesterday. It was an absolute mess. If I had actually paid the $121 gate fee, I would have been furious. Almost the entire front of the park (Future World) is walled off. You walk around construction walls to get under Spaceship Earth and then once on the other side, more walls that block all your views and force you to go right or left. I would definitely skip 2020 at Epcot!!! It WAS a beautiful park, and will be again in the future… just not this year!

    Reply

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