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[Walt Disney World] Walt Disney World - 2019 Free Dining Promo Released (Valid July 5-September 30)

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  • Jun 24th, 2019 3:00 pm
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chimaican wrote:
Jan 10th, 2019 11:37 am
Busy high season. Long lines!

If you're going in August, the last two weeks before September is lower crowds.
Ah crap. if I could change to a march date, what are lines like? Are we talking 3 hours in line, or more like 20min?
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chevyz07 wrote:
Jan 10th, 2019 11:39 am
Ah crap. if I could change to a march date, what are lines like? Are we talking 3 hours in line, or more like 20min?
Depends on the ride but 3hrs isn't out of the question. 7 Dwarf Mine Train is usually 3hr wait. I've seen the Pandora Flight ride read as high as 240min.

I'd recommend downloading the Disney World app to your cell so you can see what real time wait times are like. You also want to get familiar with the app.

Use Google and search for advice sites on WDW, it will give you insight to your adventure (because it ain't a relaxing vacation Grinning Face With Smiling Eyes). You can also check out this book; Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney. Maybe you could borrow from library if you don't want to buy it. I recommend it if this is your first time going. Gives you insight into how traffic works in the park for each ride (slow loader versus fast loading rides).
Last edited by chimaican on Jan 10th, 2019 11:51 am, edited 1 time in total.
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chimaican wrote:
Jan 10th, 2019 11:45 am
Depends on the ride but 3hrs isn't out of the question. 7 Dwarf Mine Train is usually 3hr wait. I've seen the Pandora Flight ride read as high as 240min.

I'd recommend downloading the Disney World app to your cell so you can see what real time wait times are like. You also want to get familiar with the app.

Use Google and search for advice sites on WDW, it will give you insight to your adventure (because it ain't a relaxing vacation Grinning Face With Smiling Eyes). You can also check out this book; Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney. Maybe you could borrow from library if you don't want to buy it.
Thanks, the app would help, but it wouldn't be much help until I was actually there, because wait times now would be very different from wait times in March or June.
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chevyz07 wrote:
Jan 10th, 2019 11:50 am
Thanks, the app would help, but it wouldn't be much help until I was actually there, because wait times now would be very different from wait times in March or June.
Google. There are some good travel websites that talk about WDW and seasonal changes, and has good advice on how to budget too.

Certain rides will always have long lines and the use of the FastPass is highly recommended depending on time of day. Other rides the FastPass would be not as useful and wasteful. Something like Haunted Mansion may appear to have long lines depending on the time of day but is a fast loading ride because it's a conveyer belt ride that never stops so FastPass is a waste IMO.

If you go before rope drop then you can get on a few rides before crowds filter in. I recommend reading up on everything.
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chimaican wrote:
Jan 10th, 2019 11:27 am
Depending on the time of year or how far out you book your tickets, the price difference between YYZ and BUF to MCO maybe trivial when it comes to the hassle of driving and crossing the border. If the savings is a lot then going through BUF might be worth it, but there are times I've looked where the difference in airfare was only $50 a ticket, and by the time you factor in TIME, parking, and possible hotel, it may make more sense just to fly out of YYZ.
Right now based on what I can get from Air Canada (Rouge) and JetBlue (via Google Flights search), difference I am getting is ~$500 CAD or so. Also, seems like JetBlue is pretty decent and not a discount airliner. I've flown Rouge before to and from Cuba and it was pretty garbage.
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Winkle wrote:
Jan 10th, 2019 10:50 am
In regards to travel agency, a family member who has gone to DW a few times referred me to their agent from Small World Vacations, I've been conferring with them the last day or two and they've been very helpful in answering questions and they have offered to help me with dinning recommendations and reservations. The quote they gave me wasn't particularly cheaper, about $100 USD less than what I am getting from booking with Disney directly on their website.

Also, question in regards to travel, we're going to have to fly there and flights from Toronto to Orlando are quite expensive even during the summer months, the cheapest flights I've found are all with Air Canada Rouge and I haven't had any good experiences with them. I'm looking into driving down to Buffalo and flying out of there instead but the only direct flights are with JetBlue, but works out to be ~$500 CAD less in total with return fare, how is JetBlue compared to AC Rouge and is it worth the hassle to drive down to Buffalo and flying from there instead to save some money?
If you are open to flying in a no frills airline, Frontier airlines flies from Buffalo to MCO ... have a look at the prices, I found some good deals which I booked ~$850 (Canadian) all in for 4 in April.
I have not traveled yet on this airline and this will be my first trip ... so lets see ...
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feminazi wrote:
Jan 9th, 2019 9:37 pm
3) Is Pop Century significantly better than the All Star resorts?
I've stayed at Pop Century a lot of times and really like it. The biggest advantage to Pop right now is that all their rooms are recently refurbished where as the refurbishment has only just started at the All Stars. As others have mentioned having a dedicated bus (versus shared) is another nice thing. Personally I also think their arcade, food court and store are better too. Another nice thing is that you're a short walk from Art of Animation which gives you another resort to explore in your free time.
Winkle wrote:
Jan 10th, 2019 10:50 am
Also, question in regards to travel, we're going to have to fly there and flights from Toronto to Orlando are quite expensive even during the summer months, the cheapest flights I've found are all with Air Canada Rouge and I haven't had any good experiences with them. I'm looking into driving down to Buffalo and flying out of there instead but the only direct flights are with JetBlue, but works out to be ~$500 CAD less in total with return fare, how is JetBlue compared to AC Rouge and is it worth the hassle to drive down to Buffalo and flying from there instead to save some money?
I've personally never flown JetBlue out of Buffalo but I know many who have and had no issues with them. Last year I flew Southwest to Orlando from both Buffalo and Pittsburgh. Southwest is great and I've never once had a problem with them. You also get 2 free checked bags per person which depending on how you pack, might make it cheaper than JetBlue. I hate flying out of Pearson so I'll always choose flying from Buffalo instead even if it isn't much cheaper. Yes there's the 2-hour drive but I feel like I waste 2-hours just getting around the airport when I fly out of Pearson.

We always book the Park and Fly deal from the Peace Bridge Duty Free to make things easier on us. We go down the day/night before, stay at the Days Inn and they shuttle us over to the airport the next day before our flight. You need to pay for parking anyways so we pay a little more and then don't have to worry about getting to the airport on time.
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One thing that you might want to do if you're a family of 4 is to get two cheaper rooms that are connected (or next to each other). For one room, use the Canadian discount and for the other get the free dining plan and then upgrade it to the Deluxe plan. The cost to upgrade kids from Quick Service to Deluxe is only $18 per day (63.66 for the adult). If you want to eat a lot, have one parent with both kids in the dining plan room, but you probably won't need that much food. We went for a week with three adults and one child and only did the deluxe dining plan for the room with one adult & child. With the deluxe plan, you get three table service credits a day plus two snacks. Use snacks for breakfast and then pool the table service credits for character meals. In the deluxe plan, the table credits are all the same, but for the regular plan the adult/child credits are separate, so it's harder to do. The quick service plan has them pooled, but there aren't any table service credits which are generally needed for character dining.
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ash137 wrote:
Jan 10th, 2019 12:11 pm
If you are open to flying in a no frills airline, Frontier airlines flies from Buffalo to MCO ... have a look at the prices, I found some good deals which I booked ~$850 (Canadian) all in for 4 in April.
I have not traveled yet on this airline and this will be my first trip ... so lets see ...
Yes, I saw Frontier listed with much cheaper basic prices, however price does not include checked bags or even access to overhead bins and seat selection of which I'll need if traveling with two young children. Once I start adding stuff, it's not significantly cheaper than JetBlue.
TomRFD wrote:
Jan 10th, 2019 12:27 pm
I've personally never flown JetBlue out of Buffalo but I know many who have and had no issues with them. Last year I flew Southwest to Orlando from both Buffalo and Pittsburgh. Southwest is great and I've never once had a problem with them. You also get 2 free checked bags per person which depending on how you pack, might make it cheaper than JetBlue. I hate flying out of Pearson so I'll always choose flying from Buffalo instead even if it isn't much cheaper. Yes there's the 2-hour drive but I feel like I waste 2-hours just getting around the airport when I fly out of Pearson.
Hrm... I don't see any flights from Southwest, I am guessing then they flight seasonal routes from BUF to MCO. But thanks for the tips.
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TomRFD wrote:
Jan 10th, 2019 12:27 pm

We always book the Park and Fly deal from the Peace Bridge Duty Free to make things easier on us. We go down the day/night before, stay at the Days Inn and they shuttle us over to the airport the next day before our flight. You need to pay for parking anyways so we pay a little more and then don't have to worry about getting to the airport on time.
Any other suggestions for parking (6/7days) close to Buffalo airport in case one does not plan to stay the night in Buffalo.... ?
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chimaican wrote:
Jan 10th, 2019 11:57 am
Google. There are some good travel websites that talk about WDW and seasonal changes, and has good advice on how to budget too.

Certain rides will always have long lines and the use of the FastPass is highly recommended depending on time of day. Other rides the FastPass would be not as useful and wasteful. Something like Haunted Mansion may appear to have long lines depending on the time of day but is a fast loading ride because it's a conveyer belt ride that never stops so FastPass is a waste IMO.

If you go before rope drop then you can get on a few rides before crowds filter in. I recommend reading up on everything.
Disney still uses counting cards to estimate wait times (Sometimes a cast member will give you a lanyard to carry) so I find wait times fairly accurate, regardless if a ride is slow or fast loading.

If Haunted mansion says 90 minute wait, it's still going to be close to that time, and I'd just use a fastpass. But, the line up is sort of interesting, so if it's say 30 minutes we might skip FP.

We've gone right at rope drop, early morning, and just coming in say 2 hours after opening - All have their pro's and cons. Coming just after opening sometimes means a short security line. Early morning only opens certain rides, so it's not as good as it sounds. Obviously later you go, the busier it is.

Honestly, FP is great once you use it a few times (and assuming you can get at least half decent times). We've never felt obligated to line up more than say 45 minutes, and if our FP time is later in the day, we plan for other attractions, shopping, eating, etc.

I have no idea how someone could wait 240 minutes for a 5 minute ride.
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Winkle wrote:
Jan 10th, 2019 12:33 pm
Hrm... I don't see any flights from Southwest, I am guessing then they flight seasonal routes from BUF to MCO. But thanks for the tips.
Southwest doesn't appear on any 3rd party booking sites to help keep costs down if that's where you're looking. You can only book directly from them. There are multiple flights to MCO everyday from BUF. Their current fare schedule is open to August 5th and starting on February 7th you'll be able to book through to September 2nd. I find that their prices are often the best right when the schedule opens up.

https://www.southwest.com/air/low-fare- ... index.html
ash137 wrote:
Jan 10th, 2019 12:47 pm
Any other suggestions for parking (6/7days) close to Buffalo airport in case one does not plan to stay the night in Buffalo.... ?
The airports economy lot looks to be just under $50US for a week. Don't think you're going to find much cheaper than that but maybe there's a coupon out there to knock a few bucks off.
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vangulis wrote:
Jan 10th, 2019 12:33 pm
One thing that you might want to do if you're a family of 4 is to get two cheaper rooms that are connected (or next to each other).
Just beware the Disney does not guarantee connecting rooms. They will try and honour your request but it all depends on available rooms when assigned. Seeing how the Free Dining promo is most popular and has limited rooms to begin with, your chances are that much lower.
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TomRFD wrote:
Jan 10th, 2019 1:09 pm
Southwest doesn't appear on any 3rd party booking sites to help keep costs down if that's where you're looking. You can only book directly from them. There are multiple flights to MCO everyday from BUF. Their current fare schedule is open to August 5th and starting on February 7th you'll be able to book through to September 2nd. I find that their prices are often the best right when the schedule opens up.

https://www.southwest.com/air/low-fare- ... index.html
Ah thanks, I'll check that out. I'm just using Google Flights to aggregate everything quickly but SW wasn't showing up. Appreciate the help.

Edit: Just did a quick check on SW, unfortunately they don't have flights after Aug 5 yet, (looking at going Aug 2 to 8) but just priced out last week of July and wow, it's Frontier prices but with non-discount airline perks. We Canadians really get ripped off on airfare.
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Winkle wrote:
Jan 10th, 2019 1:24 pm
Ah thanks, I'll check that out. I'm just using Google Flights to aggregate everything quickly but SW wasn't showing up. Appreciate the help.

Edit: Just did a quick check on SW, unfortunately they don't have flights after Aug 5 yet, (looking at going Aug 2 to 8) but just priced out last week of July and wow, it's Frontier prices but with non-discount airline perks. We Canadians really get ripped off on airfare.
No problem. Like I mentioned in my last post, check back on February 7th and your dates will be available to book. They usually open up sometime overnight and I recommend waking up extra early that day if you're serious about booking a flight with them.

My last Southwest flight out of Buffalo was about a year ago and I paid $631.84US total for direct return flights for 4.
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