Disney World tips


#182

Perhaps working as designed. I posted my dining reservation experience upthread.

Making dining reservations for sit down dinners was surprisingly hard. Apparently, the prime restaurants and prime times get booked up 6 months in advance. I ended up booking tentative reservations at crappy times as our fallback and checked two or three times a day until I lucked into a cancelation. There is a $10 per person no show charge. I was told people book several reservation until they make up their mind which one they really want. The no show charge ensures they cancel ahead of time.


#183

I’ve never tried to book 180 days in advance, it’s crazy that those are already booked. I thought it was crazy that at 90 days in advance they were already booked (which is what happened to me).

There is a lot of reservation turnover though as people shuffle things around in the lead up to their trip. I would imagine FASTPASS booking day has a lot of reservation changes.


#184

It’s true. They’ll book several a day and then commit. It might be related to FastPass which you can’t book until a lot later. You wouldn’t want your reservation to smack against the hottest FP ride.


#185

It wouldn’t let me book multiple dinners on the same day. I had to cancel the previous reservation.


#186

That’s strange. My sister had three in one day, and we had trouble canceling the other two on the bus because that stupid application of theirs constantly bugs out.

It’s a known issue. i mean you can book 4 dinners at the same time at different parks and they will hold that slot until they know which park they will be in that day. The day of or the night before a lot of slots often open up.


#187

You can book one “lunch” and one “dinner” bit other party members can book as well.


#188

After a week of recovery and reflection, here are some thoughts and observations based on our WDW Trip from 2/24 - 3/1.

It really does pay to plan ahead, but if you’re staying off property it’s going to be a little harder to reserve exactly what you want.

As the posts above have noted, dining reservations can be booked way in advance for people staying at the resorts and it appears you can game the system. I think the trick with dining is just to keep trying and wait for something to open up.

BTW, people have also been gaming the FP system. What some people have done is book a stay at a Disney Resort to get them the 60 day window for FastPass reservations. They book their FPs and then cancel the resort reservation, yet can still keep their FPs. I guess Disney is now clamping down on this practice and cancelling your FPs if you cancel your resort reservation.

In the end, I think it pays not to worry too much about not getting the perfect set of FPs. You should definitely use them but Quaros advice up-thread is pretty sound. I found that a good strat is simply to get to the park early. Have maybe on early morning FP for a headliner attraction. Then for the next couple of hours you should be able to get on several rides with minimal wait while you continue to book additional FPs.

The My Disney Experience App is your best friend and your worst nightmare.

When it’s working is a great way to make, check, and adjust your plans. But it’s sluggish and crashes quite a bit. But, Mobile Food ordering saved our bacon more than once. There was a large line at Satuli Canteen, but only 3 people waiting for Mobile Ordering. So I opened the app, ordered our food and got it in less than 5 minutes. Then just before the nighttime show in the Magic Kingdom, my son was massively hangry (due to not eating enough during a very exciting day). All the food places were mobbed. Mobile Ordered a couple of Hotdogs from Casey’s Corner. It was about a 15 minute wait to get the food, but still way faster than waiting in the regular line. Pro Tip: Before ordering, check the size of the Mobile Order line. Some locations (like Aloha Isle) have to prepare your order when you show up to the window, so it’s still first come first serve regardless of when you actually ordered. If there’s a huge Mobile line, it might be better just to get in the regular line.

Leave in the Middle of the Day

Seriously. You can see and do a lot in the morning. Afternoons are when everything is mobbed and parents with small kids are getting cranky. Come back later if you want to do more stuff. We generally found the mornings to be the most fun.

There are way more scooters and wheelchairs than I remember

Not sure why, but man, they are swarming all around the parks.

There are so many families wearing those matching T-shirts

Again, I don’t remember it being so common, but it seems like every family had some flavor of cheap, off-brand Disney Family shirt.

Go to the Cool Club in Epcot

It’s sponsored by Coke and they’ve got a bunch of sodas from around the world to try. Be sure you sample some Beverly (from Italy).

The VOID at Disney Spring is pretty rad

My son and I loved the Star Wars thing. When I saw him in VR I got to say “Aren’t you a little short to be a Stormtrooper?”

Customer Service is King

I’m just amazed at how well Disney provides excellent customer service to such as massive number of guests every single day. And for the most part the Guests are fairly well behaved. I’d like to better understand the psychology behind how this works.


#189

Fixed. :)


#190

Awww man, I didn’t know the cool zone had anything interesting.

Also I agree the scooter epidemic is out of control. There are some people who really need them, but there are other people on them just because they are available. Those people would benefit the most from a day of walking while they are still able to.

Also, while mobile ordering is great, they lack the ability to customize an order, and if you are a weirdo like me who likes his cheeseburger plain, or his BBQ without BBQ sauce, you are going to have a bad day.


#191

There are some really, really gross sodas out there.


#192

I think the rise of Etsy is responsible for this. There’s a ton of non-licensed Disney apparel available there. Our last trip the extended family decided to get matching t-shirts from an Etsy seller. I thought the price was a little high (although likely cheaper than licensed shirts), and the vendor sewed a tag advertising their store into the bottom seam of the shirt in such a way that it likely would have ruined the seam to take it out.

For the quick dining sitdown areas it’s definitely a lifesaver. The lines were always so short, and you didn’t need to worry about getting behind someone who was indecisive and ordering for 15 people.


#193

Yeah, it’s all unlicensed. Disney hasn’t really decided on what to do with that little problem of theirs, yet. They are a bit notorious for going after people who take their stuff but for now it’s easy to see groups of people because they’re all wearing matching shirts!


#194

My question regarding the shirts is do they only wear it on one day of the trip, do they have multiple shirts, or (and I hope its not this one, especially in summer) do they reuse the shirts throughout the trip.


#195

I was there for almost a full week last time, and there were some groups that had a different shirt for each day. Considering they’re t-shirts and it’s hot, 5-7 t-shirts hardly takes up much space in luggage. During Halloween you see the typical orange, black and white affairs. They also had knock-ff headbangers and Mickey ears.


#196

Beverly is unquestionably vile, but it was pretty fun sipping it and saying out loud, “Man, this is so good.” to get my son to try it. The Melon Fanta was excellent.


#197

A little under a week before our trip I threw my lower back out. Bad. Really painful. Got some Muscle Relaxers from the doc and did the best I could to prepare myself for what I anticipated would be a horrible vacation.

After an excruciating flight down, I was not optimistic about walking around the parks for 4-5 days let alone going on any ride. But my Doc said that it’s better to keep moving.

First day at the Magic Kingdom was a bit rough, but as the day went on, the constant mix of walking, standing, shuffling around in line, and sitting on rides was about the best thing possible for my back. By the end of the trip I was feeling pretty good.

I hate to question why some people were using scooters in the park. I mean, often there’s no visual indication if someone is disabled, but I would say it really did make it harder to navigate around the park with so many motorized vehicles.


#198

Either there are a lot of (overweight) people who in the past would have made their own way around the park, but use scooters because they are there, or most of them would not have been able to spend a day at the park and would have stayed home. I certainly cannot begrudge anyone in the second category and I have no way to tell the difference, so I default to being happy that those folks are able to get out and about.

It does make a huge difference in terms of taking the Disney buses. Pretty much every single bus now loads a scooter.