Expired Hot Deals

[Walt Disney World] Walt Disney World - Free Dining Promo Released

  • Last Updated:
  • Apr 27th, 2018 2:51 pm
Deal Addict
Mar 26, 2011
1592 posts
TomRFD wrote: The dining plan is accepted at most of the restaurants around the resort. Other than the restaurants at the Swan and Dolphin hotels, I can't think of any others off the top of my head. There are around 15 signature restaurants where you'll need to redeem 2 credits but the vast majority of restaurants only require 1.

Character dining is included with the Disney dining plan and is a great use of a credit since they're typically more expensive (dinner at Chef Mickey's for example is $35-60 for an adult) and most are only 1 credit (Cinderella’s Royal Table is 2 credits). You'd be paying up to $190 for 2 adults and 2 kids out of pocket otherwise.

Here's a list of all participating restaurants: https://disneyworld.disney.go.com/media ... _added.pdf
stack1 wrote: Actually, I think the character meals are the ones where the Dining Plan has an advantage, just because they are so expensive. When I went on the dining plan, the table credit covered Chef Mickey, Crystal Palace and Akershus, I think Cinderella's Royal Table was 2 table credits, though I didn't bother going. Those character meals can easily cost $200US+ for a family of 4. (I had a family of 5 which made it even more expensive) Note the dining plan doesn't cover tips. Unfortunately, the current free dining offer doesn't include table credits unless you book deluxe accommodation.

That said, not sure I would do the character meals again, bc my kids are older. I think those are a good option for a way to see the characters without waiting in line.

One other thing with the free dining is that it ends up being a pool of credits, and you don't have use everyone's credits at once. E.g. For quick service, we discovered that for my family of 5, we could get away with using 3 QS credits for lunch. (at that time QS inlcuded a drink and dessert and you could change the dessert for drinks etc -- but QS doesnt include dessert anymore) , but you can then exchange a QS credit for 3 snacks. We did have a bunch of credits left over, but then on the last day I changed them all for things like packaged candy (mickey shaped licorice or mickey rice crispies) as souvienirs to take home.

For those who are booking with Free Dining, I'd advise doing some research on how to dine in DIsney and "best value" for your credits. Disney is one of those places that are more enjoyable if you do your legwork beforehand.
I stand corrected.

I have nothing to offer other than anecdotal evidence, but I felt like there were quite a few places we went to that either didn’t qualify (maybe because of the tier of the restaurant) or that they required 2 vouchers. That list would be great but the link is showing down for me (could be my work’s firewall). Is there another link by any chance (or instructions how to get to it)?
Deal Addict
Sep 15, 2008
1532 posts
I think we can all agree that it can be much cheaper eating and staying offsite and buying discounted park tickets. I feel the real value of the dining is in the Table Service (sit down) restaurants. There are a ton to choose from within the Parks, the Disney Resorts, Disney Springs and Disney Boardwalk and as Stack1 pointed out, many have a Character experience. Those alone would have cost us $170-$200 for the 4 of us if we had to pay out of pocket. Our kids really enjoyed meeting all the characters and princesses without having to line up. They come to your table and you can take pics with them and have their autographs.

For the Quick service and snack credits, I like the fact that we can use them anytime we wanted to. The kids enjoyed being able to order their own food and snacks using the Magic Band. We actually had to scramble on the last day to use all the snack credits because we still had so many remaining. Ended loading up on a lot of Goofy Candies and chocolates.

Other convenient factors of staying on site is the free transportation to/from MCO courtesy of the Disney Magical Express, efficient buses running from the Resorts to the Parks, and having the ability to book Fastpasses 60 days in advance rather than the 30 if staying offsite.
We were so happy to be able to score Fastpasses for Pandora Flight of Passage. That was an amazing ride but definitely not worth lining up for 3+ hours in the Florida heat.

For large families or groups, it would be more economical to just rent a house but for a family of 2 adults and 2 kids, I think its worth it to try the Free Dining if you haven’t done so.

We actually booked free dining again for Pop Century this fall and look forward to checking out the refurbished rooms. Also, alcohol is included in the dining for the first time.
User avatar
Jun 17, 2013
14154 posts
Alexandero2 wrote: That list would be great but the link is showing down for me (could be my work’s firewall). Is there another link by any chance (or instructions how to get to it)?
That link was to the PDF file they host with all the restaurants on it. You can also see all the participating restaurants here. https://disneyworld.disney.go.com/en_CA ... ning-plan/
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Jr. Member
Dec 26, 2007
179 posts
North York
Just booked for this as well. Had already booked a Disney Springs hotel, but I have done the meal plan before and this seemed like better value (for my family of 5). We are there for 5 days of parks and won't have a car, so the airport transport and various shuttles are considerations. FYI - the price dropped $500 for the resort I was looking to book between this morning and now. A 'standard view' room came available that was cheaper than the better view rooms. I will be having groceries delivered to the room to cover breakfasts/additional snacks and wind-down beers...