There is so much to experience at Disney World, and dining is one of those. Knowing the ins and outs of dining at Disney can seem overwhelming. There are so many places to visit and new lingo to learn, and plans to make that it’s no wonder that dining mistakes at Disney are so easy to make.
Don’t worry though the following 14 common dinig mistakes are easy to avoid:
1. No knowing how to use your Disney Dining plan.
The Disney Dining plan can be a bit complicated. You have different types of credits such as snack, quick service, and table service. To be able to best maximize you dining plan you need to know aht types of credit you have, where you can use them, and what is included.
2. Not Making Reservations
Most people are shocked to learn that you need to make reservations or ADR’s as they are called in Disney speak. Popular dining spots can fill up quickly, and need to be booked as soon as possible. You can book ADR’s as soon as 180 days out, and it is highly recommended to go ahead and do so especially if you are looking to eat at places like Cinderella’s royal table, and Be our Guest.
3. Buying Water
One of the easiest ways to cut down on some of your spending at Disney World is by not buying water bottles. Yes it gets really hot in Florida, and yes you need to stay hydrated, but you can stay hydrated for free. Any quick service restaurant will give you a cup of ice water for free, and you dont have to purcahse anything.
4. Not Eating at Disney Springs
Disney Springs has been majorly updated in the last few years, and has some of the best food you can get on Disney property. From the Polite Pig to Earl of Sanwich ( one of the best values in Disney) there is a lot to pick from and there is something for everyone. You can also use your dining credits almost everywhere in Disney Springs.
5. Not Checking Prices
It is no secret that dining at Disney can be expensive. There is nothing worse then getting your bill at the end of a meal, and being blindsided by the high total. You can prevent this however by checking the menu, and prices of every Disney restaurant via my Disney Experience.
6. Skipping Mobile Ordering
Mobile ordering is a new and welcome addition to Disney quick service restaurants. When you pull up quick service restuarants on the My Disney Experience app like Satuli Canteen, Sunshine Seasons, and Pinocchio Village Haus you will see a mobile ordering button. When you click this you are brought to the restaurants menu, and can then pick out and pay for your food. Once you then ready to eat all you have to do is go back in the app, and hit the button that says I am here. You will then get updates on when your food is ready at which point you go t the mobile order window, and pick up your food without having to wait in line.
7. Not Using all of Your Dining Plan Snack Credits
Nothing makes the dining plan less worth it then if you do not use all of your credits. On a regular dining plan you get 2 snack credits per day, and that can be more then you need. There are a couple of ways that you can make sure you do not waste these credits. 1. use them at different Epcot festival booths, 2. use them to purchase prepackaged snacks to take with you to enjoy later.
8. Using Table Service Credits for Breakfast
Breakfast is one of the worst ways to use your dining plan credits. Breakfast is often the cheapest meal of the day, and you are better off paying for it out of pocket, and saving those table service credits for lunch or dinner which can be at least $10 more per person then breakfast.
9.Not Giving Yourself Enough Time to Get to Your Dining Reservation
This is a big one. It can take a long time to get from one side of a prak to another, park to hotel, or hotel to park. Also sometimes rides can take longer then expected especially when a ride gets stopped, and that can make you late for your dining reservations. Make sure to give yourself plenty of time, and try to be early by at least 15-20 minutes to your dining reservation so you get seated on time.
10. Not Planning Your Food Around Your Touring Plan
Speaking of Disney being big, and it taking a long time to get from place to place you need to be cognizant about where you are going to be and how for it is from your ADR’s. It can take an hour to get from the Magic Kingdom to your hotel dining place, and then after dining if you want to go to the park you will have to travel again. This cuts out of a lot of time you can spend touring the parks.
13. Thinking It Will Be Easy to Leave the Parks for Food
Food on Disney property is expensive, and you may think it will be worth it to leave the parks in the middle of the day to go get food, and save some money. Just like anything else though it can take a long time to get from a park to an outside restaurant wheter it be fast food or sitdown. This is especially true with the Magic Kingdom since you have to travel to the Ticket and Transportation enter then out of the park. You can waste a good couple of hours of park time doing this, and at Disney time is money.
14. Assuming the Dining Plan is always a good deal
The Disney Dining plan is not always the bst option. Depending on what types of food you eat, and how much you can end up paying a lot less money if you pay out of pocket for your food. When deciding if the dining plan is right for you calculate the cost of where you plan to make your ADR’s, and see how much that would cost out of pocket. If it is more than the dining plan then you know you will save some money by paying for the plan.
Please share below what tips do you have on dining in Disney?