Located at Disney's Hollywood Studios, the show allows guests a chance to experience what it would be like to be on the TV show American Idol. A guest first attends a private audition before a judge. If chosen, he or she will then participate in one of several shows throughout the day. There are three competitors at most shows, and the audience votes on which should make it to the final round. The show also has three judges who are industry professionals, who will critique the performances and offer advice. At the end of the day all of the winners will compete against each other. The one who wins that show will receive "The Dream Ticket". It allows the recipient to go to the head of the line at an actual American Idol audition.
The stage at The American Idol Experience resembles the stage of the TV show. A performer will warm up the audience before the show starts, and there is a host as well. The attraction is meant for the audience members and the contestants alike to feel like they are at American Idol.