New Deal for WDW…or Is It?

A new “Special Offer” was launched this week for Summer 2016 travel to Walt Disney World.  It is the Catch A Tasty Offer package!  Let’s take a look at the details, shall we?

Toluca Turkey
Toluca Legs Turkey Company Sunset Blvd. Disney’s Hollywood Studio

This offer is good, most nights, for packages booked between May 29 and June 30, 2016, and July 5 through August 13, 2016.  You must book your package by February 29, 2016 to qualify.  And, there is a minimum 3-night stay with the purchase of a 2-day Magic Your Way base ticket.  What do you get?  By booking as described, you will get One (1) Quick-Service Meal per person, per night that can be redeemed at most of the Quick-Service Restaurants throughout the Walt Disney World Resort.  Keep in mind that Disney’s Fort Wilderness campsites and Disney’s Art of Animation Little Mermaid rooms are NOT INCLUDED in this offer.

What do you think?  Is this a good offer that would entice you to consider a summer vacation?  Please don’t get me wrong, I think that many of the Quick-Service offerings around WDW are excellent!  And, you can eat quite well, if there is something that tickles your tongue!  But, is one meal a day worth the money?  Is it worth the crowds?

I think this may be a test to see how little Disney can get away with when offering incentives to visit the resort.  We have seen reduced offerings of Free Dining over the past few years.  Could it be that Disney is wanting to see if we, the guest, can survive on one meal per person, per night?  Only time will tell!

Contact Disney Travel or your favorite Authorized Disney Vacation Planner, whoever that may be, for more details and booking!

Until next time, my friends, have a Blessed and Magical Day!

WDW: Free Dining vs. Room Only

Photo: Disney Parks Blog
Photo: Disney Parks Blog

In the current offers at Walt Disney World, there are two discounts being presented.  Free Dining and Room-Only discounts are battling it out in the Disney World.  Today, I am giving you a direct comparison using the same resort, same dates, and same inclusions (add-ons for RO).  And, for the sake of comparisons, I used my family as the model.  We are two adults and three kids ages 17, 15, and 13 based on a September reservation.  Here we go!

Looking at Port Orleans- Riverside Garden Room, for 6 nights, 7 days the Room-Only discount cost was $927.20.  To add-on the 7-Day Park Hooper tickets brought the cost up to $3174.82, and the addition of the Disney Plus Dining Plan brings the total to 4994.02.  And, at first glance that doesn’t look to shabby as Disney prices go.

However, in looking at the Free Disney Dining offer, we can see a “small” difference.  The cost of the same Garden Room at Port Orleans – Riverside, including a 7-day Park Hopper Ticket for each person in the party of five, and the Disney Plus Dining Package totaled $3435.62 a Savings of $1558.40 as compared to the Room-Only discount.

My conclusion is, that while the Room-Only offer is a great discount off of the room rates, the use of it may have some limitations.  Those who have Annual Passports, for instance, can take great advantage of this deal as they do not need tickets, and many of them use the Tables In Wonderland card for dining discounts (we’ll discuss that in a future post).  But, the guest who does not have Annual Passports may want to consider using a Free Dining Offer, if they are planning to spend a significant amount of time, or money, on meals!  And, the Dining Plan allows you to select restaurants, or meals, that you would likely skip of you were paying out of pocket.

Remember, this was a package for 2 adults, and three kids.  My family to be exact!  For you, you may need to take a little time to look at both to decide what works best for you!  And, don’t forget, your Disney World Travel Specialist can be a great help in making sure you get the most for your money!  And, two-thirds of us are Disney Addicts and proud of it!  Have a great weekend, my friends! May it be blessed and magical!

Is Free Dining Really Free at WDW?


So, there is a new Free Disney Dining promotion going on at Walt Disney World.  And, the question is it worth the expense.  Let’s take a look and see!

My advice about Free Dining is typically the same.  Check the menus of the Sit-Down Restaurants you think you want to try.  Look at the prices of the items you would like to eat.  Consider the size of your party.  And, do a little math to see if it adds up to being a value.

The offer that is out now requires you to purchase a Package that includes either the Park Hopper (PH) or Water Parks, Fun, and More(WPFM) options to qualify.  Your room rate is the going rack rate and the properties included are very limited on space.  So, keep this in mind when pricing your vacation for the late summer and early fall.

I will admit that I like the dining plan because it allows me to choose some restaurants and meals I might not consider if paying out of pocket.  And, for the seasoned WDW guest, adding a PH or WPFM isn’t out of the realm of possibilities.  In fact, for some, it may be a necessity!

While the Free Dining offer isn’t REALLY free, when you are forced to purchase the add-on, if you add the price of the dining on top of just your base package, you are still saving a bundle.  I typically advise those with four or more in the family over age 9 to consider Free Dining.  My kids like it because we use it for some of the more costly buffets and family style restaurants.  We also try to do at least ONE ‘nicer’ restaurant and choose more expensive meals to help make it more cost effective.MYW PH

One more thing…this current promotion may be an indication of what is to come as related to Free Disney Dining.  This is the first time that Disney has REQUIRED an add-on to the package.  That tells me that this could be the beginning of the end of a true Free Dining offer.  Next year will be the tell!

Thanks for reading, and feel free to add your thoughts and concerns to the conversation!  Have a Blessed and Magical evening, my Disney buddies!