Dining at Walt Disney World can be confusing, especially if you don’t consider yourself an expert. There are plenty of fast food restaurants off property, but those will only take time out of a vacation where every moment counts. There are over 300 different dining options at Walt Disney World, and many of them are quick service. You can be fed and ready for the next attraction in no time at all. Here are eight tips on quick service dining. Some of them might save you time, while others could keep a few extra dollars in your pocket. These tips are all meant to help you get the most out of your Walt Disney World dining experiences.
9. Have Your Payment Ready
You might think that this is obvious, but too often that’s not the case. There are plenty of people who will place their order, then spend the next minute or two looking in a backpack or purse for their wallet. Have your credit card, cash, or gift card in your hand when you place your order. That will save everyone a little bit of time. If you’re paying with your MagicBand, have that ready as well. Standing in line at Electric Umbrella is not the place to take it off and stick it in your bag for a little while.
8. Kids Can Split an Adult Meal
If you have small children who aren’t big eaters you can save some money if they split a meal instead of ordering from the kids’ menu. Most of the adult meals contain plenty of food, and your kids won’t leave hungry. Sometimes even adults can split a meal and end up full. It’s a great way to save money and not waste any food or end up feeling bloated.
7. Ice Water Is Free
Don’t spend an extra few dollars buying bottled water for each member of your party. Order cups of ice water instead. Ice water is free at any quick service restaurant, you don’t even have to buy anything else. It’s important to drink enough water while at Walt Disney World, and it doesn’t have to cost you anything to do it.
6. Be Aware of Bays
A few of the quick service restaurants at Walt Disney World have what they call Bays, Stations, or Windows. Simply put, they’re different lines with different options in one restaurant. This isn’t a problem, until you see that the line for Bay One is shorter and you try to order Bay Three items in it. Make sure that everything that you order is from the line in front of you and you’ll be fine. If you want to mix and match Bays, you’ll have to wait in more than one line. One popular restaurant that uses this system is Sunshine Seasons at Epcot.
5. Read the Menus Ahead of Time
It is not hard to find out what is on a menu at a quick service restaurant. Menus can be found online and on the My Disney Experience App. You can also see the menu well before you need to get in line. Figure out what you want to order, then get in line. You’d want the people in front of you to have done the same thing, it’s common courtesy. If you’ve had time to look the menu over, you might also discover something that you wouldn’t have found if you just glanced at it quickly.
It’s also not a bad idea to read the menus before you leave home. If you don’t, you might miss what could be a favorite dish or restaurant because you didn’t realize that it was there.
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4. Stagger Your Meals
The quick service restaurants will be packed at traditional lunch and dinner times, even on days that aren’t all that busy. Eat an early lunch, grab a mid-afternoon snack, and then have a late dinner. You will be able to save a lot of time that way. You’ll stand in plenty of lines while at Walt Disney World, you’ll want to cut back on waiting whenever possible. Staggering your meals will help you to do that. You’ll wait less and eat sooner.
3. Sometimes the Quick Service Disney Dining Plan Is Free
The Disney Dining Plan allows you to pay for your meals as part of your Magic Your Way Package. You have to stay at a Walt Disney World Resort hotel in order to be eligible. There are several plans available. Sometimes the Quick Service Dining Plan is offered for free. You’ll receive two quick service meals and one snack each day of your vacation. There are extra restrictions and qualifications that will need to be met, and Disney may discontinue the program at any time. Free dining is usually offered in the fall months. It is so popular that many people plan their vacations around the promotion.
2. Use Mobile Ordering
Multiple Quick Service locations offer Mobile Ordering throughout Walt Disney World. This can be done via your My Disney Experience App. It’s super simple to order off the menu, pay, and place the order right from your phone. Let the Quick Service spot know when you’ve arrived and they will send you a notification back with the food is ready to go! Pick up your food at a separate Mobile Order window and avoid the crowds all together.
1. Try Something Different
Quick service dining does not have to be boring. In fact, it is anything but boring at Walt Disney World. You can order sushi, African-inspired ribs, steak, vegan korma, bratwurst, waffle sandwiches, fish and chips, couscous, and so much more. You don’t have to dine on burgers, pizza, and chicken nuggets while at Walt Disney World, unless those are what you want. There are so many choices that your taste buds will never get bored.