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View Full Version : Did Pete ever complain to ABD about the food?


MaryKatesMom
06-24-2011, 09:41 AM
I'm with Pete here. The food is an important part of our vacation and if you are doing a luxury vacation they better hit it out of the park. You're in Italy, home of some of the best food on the planet, how hard could it be?

If you pay $200 for a 7 day Carnival cruise then you don't get to complain but ABD should have higher standards.

So I was wondering if Pete ever complained to ABD and if so, what was their response?

mikelan6
06-24-2011, 09:57 AM
I know that one of the worst meal experiences I've had was at the Walt Disney Studios during an ABD trip. We were SO rushed to eat and continue the tour, it was very unpleasant.

*NikkiBell*
06-24-2011, 09:58 AM
I wouldn't be surprised. Pete isn't one to be shy about his feelings. :)

DisneyKevin
06-24-2011, 10:03 AM
I know that one of the worst meal experiences I've had was at the Walt Disney Studios during an ABD trip. We were SO rushed to eat and continue the tour, it was very unpleasant.

The food wasnt the issue.

That was poor timing and our guides being a bit overzealous with schedule maintenance.

It's my understanding that the April Adventure experienced none of that.

mikelan6
06-24-2011, 10:30 AM
The food wasn't the issue.

That was poor timing and our guides being a bit overzealous with schedule maintenance.

It's my understanding that the April Adventure experienced none of that.

All true. But Pete was more complaining about the lack of choice as well, not necessarily the food itself.

ABD did make up for the rushed Studio meal with an amazing dinner and reception at Steakhouse 55 later that evening. :goodvibes

Leigha
06-24-2011, 11:26 AM
I think he either has or will and I would go a step further if I were him and ask them .what the meals will be on his next trip (I would think they know by now) This will be so A. he is informed about whether or not to go somewhere different on his own and B. more importantly to let them know how serious the situation is and so that they'll have to state what choice they've made and think about whether or not it was a good one. You're paying too much not to do this and they should have no trouble standing behind their choice.

DaParkers
06-24-2011, 01:37 PM
Pete can't complain if he's willing to pay for it again. Isn't that what he said about ticket prices?

BriarRosie
06-24-2011, 01:44 PM
Pete can't complain if he's willing to pay for it again. Isn't that what he said about ticket prices?

I don't know if Pete would be willing to do that add-on for the Med cruise again, if ABD doesn't change. This type of luxury package vs. WDW ticket prices are like comparing apples to oranges, IMHO.

Tickets to WDW theme parks are mandatory if you want to have a complete vacation at WDW. This ABD add-on was completely optional. Pete could have probably had a better time in Rome, for example, with a DCL sponsored excursion instead of paying the premium with ABD.

DisneyKevin
06-24-2011, 01:52 PM
Pete can't complain if he's willing to pay for it again. Isn't that what he said about ticket prices?

I'm not sure the decision to pay for another of these add-ons has been made as of yet.

The upcoming one for the Alaskan cruise is paid in full and well into the "huge penalty" phase.

I'm also not sure we're making a fair comparison.

A better comparison would be paying the premium for a Disney ticket and finding out that the attractions you were hoping for were not available and instead, your only options were typical, road side carnival rides.

DaParkers
06-24-2011, 01:53 PM
I don't know if Pete would be willing to do that add-on for the Med cruise again, if ABD doesn't change. This type of luxury package vs. WDW ticket prices are like comparing apples to oranges, IMHO.

Tickets to WDW theme parks are mandatory if you want to have a complete vacation at WDW. This ABD add-on was completely optional. Pete could have probably had a better time in Rome, for example, with a DCL sponsored excursion instead of paying the premium with ABD.

Tickets to WDW are not mandatory, nor is an ABD add on or a Med cruise. It is definitely apples to apples. One is about food, the other is about tickets, but the premise is the same. Complaining about something that you are willing to pay for, period. BTW, he said that he would do it again.

DisneyKevin
06-24-2011, 01:56 PM
Tickets to WDW are not mandatory, nor is an ABD add on or a Med cruise. It is definitely apples to apples. One is about food, the other is about tickets, but the premise is the same. Complaining about something that you are willing to pay for, period. BTW, he said that he would do it again.

Actually...it's not apples to apples.

If you want to enter a Disney theme park....you buy a ticket or else you dont enter.

There are other ways to see St Peter's Basilica and far less expensive ways to eat in Italy.

In one case you have no other option and in the other there are several options.

DaParkers
06-24-2011, 02:05 PM
I'm not sure the decision to pay for another of these add-ons has been made as of yet.

The upcoming one for the Alaskan cruise is paid in full and well into the "huge penalty" phase.

I'm also not sure we're making a fair comparison.

A better comparison would be paying the premium for a Disney ticket and finding out that the attractions you were hoping for were not available and instead, your only options were typical, road side carnival rides.

I understand what you're saying, but I disagree. I am playing more Devil's advocate than anything else, so please don't mistake my demeanor. I disagreed with Pete when he said it. I got the feeling that some at the table did also, but that's irrelevant. He may not go on another ABD add on, but he said he is willing to. Maybe I'm over simplifying it, but it's all the same to me. Don't complain about it if you're willing to pay for it. It's the same with gas prices. We, as consumers have the right to complain about everything, even if we will still pay the price. Driving to WDW is not a necessity, but I do it. If gas is 4$ a gallon, I may still drive to Orlando, but I will still complain about it.

DaParkers
06-24-2011, 02:08 PM
Actually...it's not apples to apples.

If you want to enter a Disney theme park....you buy a ticket or else you dont enter.

There are other ways to see St Peter's Basilica and far less expensive ways to eat in Italy.

In one case you have no other option and in the other there are several options.

When Pete spoke, options were not a qualifier. Willingness to pay for it was.

BriarRosie
06-24-2011, 02:19 PM
I understand what you're saying, but I disagree. I am playing more Devil's advocate than anything else, so please don't mistake my demeanor. I disagreed with Pete when he said it. I got the feeling that some at the table did also, but that's irrelevant. He may not go on another ABD add on, but he said he is willing to. Maybe I'm over simplifying it, but it's all the same to me. Don't complain about it if you're willing to pay for it. It's the same with gas prices. We, as consumers have the right to complain about everything, even if we will still pay the price. Driving to WDW is not a necessity, but I do it. If gas is 4$ a gallon, I may still drive to Orlando, but I will still complain about it.

ABD add-ons are optional, and you don't have to buy them to enjoy cruise ports. ABD should be bending over backwards to keep people happy so they would choose another ABD add-on.

WDW tickets are the only way to see the parks, so that's why I said they are mandatory if you wanted a complete WDW vacation. You can't say park tickets are optional for the typical Disney vacation.

I stand by my post that you're not comparing apples to apples.

DaParkers
06-24-2011, 02:30 PM
ABD add-ons are optional, and you don't have to buy them to enjoy cruise ports. ABD should be bending over backwards to keep people happy so they would choose another ABD add-on.

WDW tickets are the only way to see the parks, so that's why I said they are mandatory if you wanted a complete WDW vacation. You can't say park tickets are optional for the typical Disney vacation.

I stand by my post that you're not comparing apples to apples.

So, WDW shouldn't be bending over backwards so that you would come back on a trip? Only ABD? Your point helps my arguement. Isn't the fact that tickets are mandatory even more of a reason to complain. Why complain about something if you have other options? If gas was $5 a gallon at one station, but $3 across the street, would you pay the $5 and then complain? Probably not. But, if $5 was the only price, wouldn't you be more likely to complain?

P.S. Why are options being discussed? That was NOT a qualifier in Pete's statement. Willingness to pay was.

DisneyKevin
06-24-2011, 02:35 PM
Don't complain about it if you're willing to pay for it.

I guess I disagree with this basic premise.

My electric bill is WAYYY too high. I moan and carry on for days. I've never once considered turning off my electricity.

I'm also of the belief that if you dont complain when dissatisfied with a product or service, then there is little hope of it ever getting better.

Why would anyone improve something they didnt know was unacceptable.

I still dont agree with the comparison of WDW tickets and an ABD add on.

Agreed that neither are mandatory. You used the example of gas. Using your argument....your car isnt mandatory, let alone gas to drive it.

But, if you want to get to WDW and arent willing to walk, it's a necessary evil. The same can be said for WDW tickets. They arent mandatory...unless you want to see the parks.

On the other hand, an ABD add-on is nothing but luxury. You can get off the ship and see pretty much the same stuff for a lot less. You are paying for guides, meals, front of the line access etc.

If you are willing to pay that price for luxury, it's my belief that you are entitled to the luxury you paid for. The discussion never was about the price being too high. The discussion was about the perception of not receiving that "paid for" luxury.

This is a different discussion than that of whether or not the price of Disney tickets will ever reach the tipping point where people dont buy them any more.

DaParkers
06-24-2011, 02:45 PM
I guess I disagree with this basic premise.

My electric bill is WAYYY too high. I moan and carry on for days. I've never once considered turning off my electricity.

I'm also of the belief that if you dont complain when dissatisfied with a product or service, then there is little hope of it ever getting better.

Why would anyone improve something they didnt know was unacceptable.

I still dont agree with the comparison of WDW tickets and an ABD add on.

Agreed that neither are mandatory. You used the example of gas. Using your argument....your car isnt mandatory, let alone gas to drive it.

But, if you want to get to WDW and arent willing to walk, it's a necessary evil. The same can be said for WDW tickets. They arent mandatory...unless you want to see the parks.

On the other hand, an ABD add-on is nothing but luxury. You can get off the ship and see pretty much the same stuff for a lot less. You are paying for guides, meals, front of the line access etc.

If you are willing to pay that price for luxury, it's my belief that you are entitled to the luxury you paid for. The discussion never was about the price being too high. The discussion was about the perception of not receiving that "paid for" luxury.

This is a different discussion than that of whether or not the price of Disney tickets will ever reach the tipping point where people dont buy them any more.

We agree on a couple of points, not on others. Life wouldn't be fun if we agreed about everything. Thanks for sharing your point of view and thanks for the AMC review. I will definitely be trying it.

DisneyKevin
06-24-2011, 03:00 PM
We agree on a couple of points, not on others. Life wouldn't be fun if we agreed about everything. Thanks for sharing your point of view and thanks for the AMC review. I will definitely be trying it.

I have one more thing and then, believe it or not, I'm going to AMC Dine In.

I'm sure you pay a princely sum for cable each month (and if you dont...play along).

For a one week, in the middle of the month, your reception is terrible. You have lines and static, the voice fades in and out...you get the idea.

If that were me, I'd call my cable company and complain that I was getting what I had paid a princely sum for and I would ask that it be fixed. in other words, I'd complain...as I'm sure most would.

I'm surely not going to disconnect my cable, but it should be fixed.

That, to me, is a comparison to complaining about an ABD add on.

Now let's say you walk into Publix and milk is over $5.00 a gallon. You can complain all you want, but if you want milk....you pay $5.00. You can decide not to buy milk...but there really isnt a suitable substitution. Buy it or dont.

That's a suitable comparison to WDW tickets.

Now I'm really done and off to DTD and Bad Teacher.

And a mango margarita.:thumbsup2

DaParkers
06-24-2011, 03:22 PM
I have one more thing and then, believe it or not, I'm going to AMC Dine In.

I'm sure you pay a princely sum for cable each month (and if you dont...play along).

For a one week, in the middle of the month, your reception is terrible. You have lines and static, the voice fades in and out...you get the idea.

If that were me, I'd call my cable company and complain that I was getting what I had paid a princely sum for and I would ask that it be fixed. in other words, I'd complain...as I'm sure most would.

I'm surely not going to disconnect my cable, but it should be fixed.

That, to me, is a comparison to complaining about an ABD add on.

Now let's say you walk into Publix and milk is over $5.00 a gallon. You can complain all you want, but if you want milk....you pay $5.00. You can decide not to buy milk...but there really isnt a suitable substitution. Buy it or dont.

That's a suitable comparison to WDW tickets.

Now I'm really done and off to DTD and Bad Teacher.

And a mango margarita.:thumbsup2

I agree. I never said that I felt differently, just playing Devil's Advocate. Enjoy the movie/meal.

OhioDisneyDavid
06-24-2011, 03:22 PM
Pete had indicated in his Podcast comments that the food was not a reason to keep from doing this ABD experience. I am booked on a 7day Med DCL w/ABD add-on for August 27th and have some concerns:

DW is seafood allergic. Not just tummy ache type, in the hospital type. We ate at California Grill in Contemporary where someone didnít prepare seafood away from her meal and she spent the night in the Celebration Hospital. From Peteís comments, her only choice on the Monaco lunch is a cheeseburger. Not top notch cuisine on the Riviera when we are paying top dollar for everything.
Paid big bucks for ABD and expectations are high. If ABD experiences are same tours as the DCL excursions, why am I paying more?
Meals were average; excursions were nominal and not a lot of extras in Peteís opinion. Why would he still highly recommend the ABD experience?
We are two adults travelling together with no small children so the extra eyes are not a factor. Cast Members are good tour guides but are they worth double that the normal DCL excursion guides?
I would love to hear more of the ABD details from Pete and team. Possibly the team could have another podcast special segment or show? Interested in how they deal with finances (credit card versus cash versus travel cash card)? Did they carry passports or copies?

MaryKatesMom
06-24-2011, 04:51 PM
We're thinking about an ABD trip to Italy during my DD's spring break in 2013. She'll be a freshman in High School and as they get older, pulling them out of school becomes more difficult.

We had good friends of ours go to Rome for 7 nights this spring and they all raved about how spectacular the food was and they are foodies. If we went and had a lesser experience I would be greatly dissappointed.

Therefore, I hope Pete gets across to them the importance having choices and to carefully chose the locations.

SteamboatStevie
06-24-2011, 05:01 PM
Now I'm really done and off to DTD and Bad Teacher.



Enjoy the movie, that's one with "real people"!

Cap.Steamboat Willie
06-24-2011, 06:11 PM
Being a teacher, the movie does not appel to me, but enjoy your feast with your "Real People" movie:thumbsup2

GAN
06-25-2011, 06:40 AM
The food wasnt the issue.

That was poor timing and our guides being a bit overzealous with schedule maintenance.

It's my understanding that the April Adventure experienced none of that.

If I was fed French Fries in Rome -FOOD would be the issue, or at least one of the issues. Especially at $400/person per day.

DisneyKevin
06-25-2011, 09:26 AM
If I was fed French Fries in Rome -FOOD would be the issue, or at least one of the issues. Especially at $400/person per day.

The post you quoted was in reference to an experience that happened at the Disney Studio in Burbank, California while participating in the Backstage Magic Adventure.

GAN
06-25-2011, 11:05 AM
Sorry about that ...I swear I heard Pete mention that at one restaurant in Rome they had served them french fries of some type at a meal.

On a separate note... Driving in Italy is not as bad in Italy/Europe as Pete described. Driving in "cities" like Rome or Florence is not advised, but I assure you that renting a car in Tuscany(or wherever you may chose) is something not to be missed. My suggestion is don't worry about the locals, they will go around you like you are standing still -just worry about yourself. We were a little nervous and it had been a few years since I drove a 5-speed but it was a blast on those roads. I hope you do go back and head off on your own with a car -you won't regret it.

sayhello
06-25-2011, 05:10 PM
Pete had indicated in his Podcast comments that the food was not a reason to keep from doing this ABD experience. I am booked on a 7day Med DCL w/ABD add-on for August 27th and have some concerns:

DW is seafood allergic. Not just tummy ache type, in the hospital type. We ate at California Grill in Contemporary where someone didnít prepare seafood away from her meal and she spent the night in the Celebration Hospital. From Peteís comments, her only choice on the Monaco lunch is a cheeseburger. Not top notch cuisine on the Riviera when we are paying top dollar for everything.
Paid big bucks for ABD and expectations are high. If ABD experiences are same tours as the DCL excursions, why am I paying more?
Meals were average; excursions were nominal and not a lot of extras in Peteís opinion. Why would he still highly recommend the ABD experience?
We are two adults travelling together with no small children so the extra eyes are not a factor. Cast Members are good tour guides but are they worth double that the normal DCL excursion guides?

I would love to hear more of the ABD details from Pete and team. Possibly the team could have another podcast special segment or show? Interested in how they deal with finances (credit card versus cash versus travel cash card)? Did they carry passports or copies?First off, I *HIGHLY* suggest you call ABD and DCL and let them know that your DW is allergic to seafood. They work very hard to accommodate such things when they know about it ahead of time. I took the ABD add-on for the 11-night Med cruise last year. I can't eat tomatoes or tomato products or citrus. I told them, and the Guides always got me an alternative meal. Occasionally, they had to negotiate it on the spot, but I *ALWAYS* got a reasonable alternative meal. Some of the alternatives were fabulous! We also had a family that ate gluten free, and they always had appropriate alternatives for them, also. I agree that they should have had some options at the Monaco buffet, but Pete never said that he'd told ABD ahead of time that he wouldn't eat seafood. Again, I agree that they should have had alternatives anyways, but if you tell them ahead of time that you need alternatives (and state a cheeseburger would not be acceptable) you can expect the Guides to do their absolute best to accommodate your wife's allergies. I agree. A lot of the food on the ABD was not great. But then, the food on the Magic was out and out BAD, and I didn't hear anyone saying the cruise part of the Med cruise was not worth it because the food was bad.

I really feel our excursions were way above the "normal DCL excursions". Not "nominal" at all!! We had a smaller group than the DCL excursions, and VIP access several places. We were able to go from place to place because ABD had arranged all our transportation seamlessly. I thought the local guides we had were also fabulous! I don't know, I guess "worth it" is a subjective thing, but I TOTALLY thought the ABD add-on was worth it. If you want, you can read my Trip Report (link in my Signature) if you want to hear the positive sides of the ABD add-on.

Sayhello

OhioDisneyDavid
06-27-2011, 08:45 AM
Say Hello,

I appreciate your post and your trip report is what convinced me to book the DCL/ABD experience. I am looking forward to a very special trip.

I have already noted my seafood allergy concern on both the DCL & ABD reservations. After I listened to Pete, I called back and confirmed. :) I also plan to alert the ABD tour guides and DCL chefs. We do not need time in the infirmary on our Mediterranean cruise.

Pete did mention that the food issue was "his opinion" and I am trying to balance that with other comments that were made during the podcast trip report along with your top notch trip report. I would like for Pete to share some of the special "magic" without spoiling the whole ABD experience. What I heard in the podcast is that the food overshadowed this special treatment. My wife and I looked at each other during the podcast and said out loud, "Did we waste our money?" "Should we have done private tours or DCL excursions instead?"

I was thrilled about what Pete said on the DCL food quality and experience. I simply want to hear that Pete is happy (or thrilled) with the ABD experience and feels that the money spent on the Add-on was worth it along with some of the reasons why. I hear this loud and clear in your trip report and would like to see it echoed from the podcast team. If they can't do that, I would hope that they would communicate that to the ABD people and get it fixed.

Thanks,
Dave

sayhello
06-27-2011, 06:32 PM
Say Hello,

I appreciate your post and your trip report is what convinced me to book the DCL/ABD experience. I am looking forward to a very special trip.

I have already noted my seafood allergy concern on both the DCL & ABD reservations. After I listened to Pete, I called back and confirmed. :) I also plan to alert the ABD tour guides and DCL chefs. We do not need time in the infirmary on our Mediterranean cruise.

Pete did mention that the food issue was "his opinion" and I am trying to balance that with other comments that were made during the podcast trip report along with your top notch trip report. I would like for Pete to share some of the special "magic" without spoiling the whole ABD experience. What I heard in the podcast is that the food overshadowed this special treatment. My wife and I looked at each other during the podcast and said out loud, "Did we waste our money?" "Should we have done private tours or DCL excursions instead?"

I was thrilled about what Pete said on the DCL food quality and experience. I simply want to hear that Pete is happy (or thrilled) with the ABD experience and feels that the money spent on the Add-on was worth it along with some of the reasons why. I hear this loud and clear in your trip report and would like to see it echoed from the podcast team. If they can't do that, I would hope that they would communicate that to the ABD people and get it fixed.

Thanks,
DaveDave, I hope you get the answers you're looking for from the Podcast team. And I hope you REALLY enjoy your cruise & ABD add-on!!

Sayhello

GAN
06-27-2011, 08:48 PM
The post you quoted was in reference to an experience that happened at the Disney Studio in Burbank, California while participating in the Backstage Magic Adventure.

Actually, Pete said they were served "Waffle" Fries -since Fries were also offered on the Backstage Magic Tour, I'll assume that the Waffle Fries are ABD's idea of "Luxury Food."popcorn::

DisneyKevin
06-27-2011, 09:14 PM
Actually, Pete said they were served "Waffle" Fries -since Fries were also offered on the Backstage Magic Tour, I'll assume that the Waffle Fries are ABD's idea of "Luxury Food."popcorn::

I truly understand what you are saying.

You wont be happy with French Fries on your Med DCL add on.

I get that.

In one of your posts, you quoted one of my posts regarding an issue on a Backstage Magic Adventure.

The issue had nothing to do with the quality of the food or French Fries. It had to do with being horribly rushed through lunch. I also wanted to let the other poster know that the issue had been addressed on a following trip.

I'm not disagreeing with you. I swear.