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Disney World Dining Tips

Everyone visiting Walt Disney World will need to, sooner or later, EAT! For some guests, trying all the special foods and fun meals is as big a part of their trip as Mickey Mouse! Here are my tips for making the most of dining at Walt Disney World!

1) Reservations

Insure you make dining reservations 180 days prior to your departure date, even if you aren't 100% sure you want it. You can always go back and cancel your reservation but, the likelihood of it being available later is slim to none.

2) Drinks

Disney sells Coke products so, if you are a Pepsi drinker, consider bringing your own or ordering them to be delivered to your hotel.

You can get FREE ice water at almost all counter services restaurants and Starbucks locations. Disney has started to install water refill stations in a few locations throughout the Disney Parks.

3) Dining Research

Disney has a plethora of food options: from fine dining, to kid-friendly to buffets, and character dining experiences. You can review the menus online and see where each restaurant is located to help you decide the right dining experience for your family.

4) Plan Ahead

Plan out your day ahead of time. Book your dining based off of the park you will be visiting that day. Take into consideration that some restaurants will take more time out of your day, especially if they are a character dining experience or are locating in a resort. If you are on a budget, remember that the Disney Signature Restaurants are generally the most expensive and the counter services are the cheaper way to go. Also, you may want to consider having a late breakfast (which is typically the cheapest) and a late or early dinner. Then take advantage of all the yummy snacks that Disney has to offer between your sit down dining experiences.

5) Resort Dining

Don't skip out on your resort food court or cafeteria. The breakfast options at the resort food courts are generally inexpensive and are very generous serving sizes. Disney also offers amazing restaurants like Kona Cafe at Disney's Polynesian Village Resort or The Wave at Disney's Contemporary Resort, which are both just a quick monorail ride away from both Magic Kingdom and EPCOT.

6) Character Dining

The best of both worlds: get to eat a great meal, and your kids get to skip the long lines and met their favorite characters. Character dining can be found throughout all four parks plus some resorts like Disney's Grand Floridian Resort and Spa, The Contemporary Resort and the Polynesian Village Resort.

7) Food allergies

If anyone in your party has food allergies or a special diet, you can note it ahead of time when making a reservation. In addition, I recommend you let your server know right away. Some locations have special menus and they are great about accommodating special requests. Even Quick Service locations can generally take care of you.

8) Mobile Orders

No more waiting in lines...many of the quick service locations now offer mobile ordering. Order your food on the My Disney Experience app and it will let you know when your order is ready. You go straight to the mobile order window to pick up your food.


Maria Merritt is a Vacation Specialist with Coasters and Castles Travel. She lives in Arizona but is originally from Colorado. Her favorite Disney character is Princess Belle and her favorite attraction is the Kilimanjaro safari in Animal Kingdom. Contact her today so she can make all your dreams come true at mmarquez-merritt@coastersandcastlestravel.com Hablo Español

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