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Old 04-29-2010, 08:17 AM   #1
CanadianGuy


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Exclamation 2010 Free Dining FAQ and Questions Thread

ONLINE BOOKING IS NOW AVAILABLE - CLICK HERE

----

When is free dining going be offered?

F/D will be offered this year from 8/15 to 10/2. The offer is Quick Service dining at the values and Regular Disney Dining Plan at the Moderates and Deluxes.

But I'm arriving on 8/13 or 10/04 .. can I still get free dining?

Your check-in date must be on one of the announced date to receive free dining. Period. The only way around that is to split your reservation if you arrive before 08/15. If your check-IN date is 10/02, you can get Free Dining for the duration of your stay at your check-in resort.

If I check-in on 10/02 and switch resorts on 10/06, I'll have F/D for the whole stay right?

No. You won't. Moving resorts mid-stay AFTER 10/02 would terminate your free dining.

Do I have to buy a ticket for every night? Can I stay for 21 nights?

As far as what we know so far.. And there is a change in the minimum ticket requirement

- 3 night minimum length of stay... 14 night maximum

- You must purchase a package that includes at least a TWO day base-ticket for each person staying in the room. All persons in the room must purchase the same level of ticket. (These can be upgraded separately after you check in if you wish)

I'm not sure I wanna go, how long can I wait to book?

Looks like 8/14 .. keeping in mind availability will reduce as time goes on.

Will value resorts be included in F/D this year?

Value Resorts are supposed included in this offer. The exact quantity of rooms and at which resort vary by dates. F/D at the values includes Quick Service Dining but you can upgrade to the regular Disney Dining Plan ...

I already have a reservation at _____ resort for ______ dates.. can I have this applied to my existing reservation?

Chances are probably good if you call as soon as the offer is released, you shouldn't have much trouble converting your current reservation to the new offer. You'll lose any other discount you currently have because all F/D bookings must be at the rack room rate for the resort you have picked.

If for any reason there is no promo room inventory for your favorite resort for the dates you've picked, the CM on the phone will explain your options in terms of changing resorts or possibly dates to get what you want.

Your deposit(s) or payments you've made to date on your current reservation will be moved to your new reservation. Depending on how the CM on the phone proceeds, you may or may not get a new reservation #.

Do not worry, whatever they do it should not affect any dining reservations you currently have. If you have concerns about that, call the dining reservation line or check the reservations online to confirm nothing has been cancelled or 'lost'.

But since I already made my reservation at my favorite resort and my preferred dates, I'm guaranteed to be able to switch to Free Dining right?

In a word - No, you are not.

Promotional room inventory varies greatly by offer, by dates, by resort and even by room category. Free Dining room inventory is based on how well occupied the resort already is.. so.. if you picked a popular resort and travel times, the amount of F/D rooms could be very limited.

For Disney Visa holders you may call today to confirm availability and book. The General Public can start calling on Monday.

I'm staying at a Walt Disney Good Neighbor Hotel in Downtown Disney. Can I get free dining?

No. The only resorts offering this are owned and controlled 100% by Disney. This offer is not valid at non-Disney resorts regardless of where they are located. This also means you can't get free dining at the Swan and Dolphin.

How quickly will ___(insert favorite resort or resort type or room category)___ sell out?

Last year, according to poster B-RIDE, most all resorts that showed availability on the first day, showed the same availability on most dates for at least 2-3 weeks.

So if you don't get thru in the first hour, don't panic. Certainly try to make your booking as soon as possible.

What are the three letter Booking Codes for this offer?

For Disney Visa Card Holders :

Value Resorts with free Quick Service Dining: QD4
Moderate Resorts with free Regular Dining: WG7
Deluxe Resorts with free Regular Dining: NF4


And above all.. RELAX ... it's a vacation. Yes, a truly good deal on a vacation.. but still.. JUST a vacation. Don't drive yourself or your family nuts over it.

THE BOTTOM LINE IS THIS:

If you can be flexible on your dates or your resort choice.. or ideally both, then you stand the best chance of booking a free dining trip you can be excited about!

All without driving those who love you around the bend.


---

Some tips on making Advanced Dining Reservations..

I know it's easy to get all caught up in the craziness on these boards.. believe me.. it's happened to me LOTS of times.

But remember a few things..

1) Relax. Its supposed to be a vacation... so if it's stressing you out and you haven't even booked it yet.. maybe you're doing something wrong?

2) Do the opposite of everyone else. Yes.. POPULAR TIMES for ADR's do book up early.. but the off-peak dining times almost always show some availability.. And my number one recommendation for anyone going to Disney - ANY time of year - is try to eat at the off-peak dining periods. Consider a 10:45 lunch or a 2pm lunch or a 3pm dinner ... look at it without the blinders of "Lunch is from 11am to 1pm" and "Dinner is from 4pm to 7pm" -- I tend to grab something quick at the resort in the morning.. a snack before eleven and not eat lunch til 2pm or 3pm. And then I'll have dinner after 7pm.. This makes a HUGE difference in finding ADRs... AND it has the side benefit of assisting with your park touring plans. While everyone else is zigging (eating) you'll be zagging (along Big Thunder or Space Mountain or) on any other ride that have shorter lines during typical meal windows...And when you're eating.. they'll be standing in line..

3) Popular kids ain't always the bees knees. Like everyone else, I wanted to follow the crowds and get my ADR's at Spoodles, Le Cellier and all the 'peak interest' places ... but the last couple of trips, I literally have taken to calling and saying "What have you got in the Epcot or International Gateway/Boardwalk area for late dinner on this date.. " And then picking one of the off-peak availables and eating there. It's a lot less frustrating and I've discovered some amazing menus and foods that I would have never found because they weren't on the "cool kids" list here on the DIS.

4) I almost never book an ADR every day. It's too much .. too much food and frequently too much running around. The one time I did, I felt like I kept cutting off the fun we were having so we could make our ADR. What? Huh? I'm having the time of my life in the Magic Kingdom but I have to stop so we don't miss out on a 'popular' dining destination reservation? That's backwards.

5) Making ADR's is a LOT like making a room request. If you give the reservation agent some general parameters about where on the resort property you're gonna be on that date, you can be flexible with your meal times... They can almost ALWAYS find you something. But if you MUST eat at Le Cellier between 4p and 4:30pm .. you're probably gonna wind up disappointed.

6. Recognize your plans will probably change. I had the WORST Disney meltdown EVER... after I got super lucky and got a 6:30pm reservation at Spoodles back when it was the hottest of the hot - EVERYONE was talking about it. And as we were walking thru Epcot to wander over to the restaurant, one member of my party smelled the Fish & Chips in the UK pavilion and that was it.. EVERYONE wanted cheap, greasy fish and chips. I HATE fish & chips.. I can't stand it. I don't care if it was prepared by some magical dream team combination of Emeril Legacé, Julia Child AND Martha Stewart working off the recipes of the Master Chefs of Europe, I ain't eating fish & chips. Anywho.. after about a half hour of some pretty heated discussions and a few foot stomping tantrum moments... we all calmed down and I realized.. Spoodles just was NOT going to happen. Ç'est la vie.

I know F/D gets busy.. but if you think outside the "popular" box, you can find lots of excellent choices that you would never have even thought of otherwise.

Just a few things to help the F/D 'foodies' make some choices without going insane and pulling all your hair out.



I mean seriously.. what fun is a Florida vacation if you have to wear a wig the whole time cause you pulled out all your hair making dining reservations?

Knox

===

Graphic from DVISA Site: (courtesy of LDJ2143 - Thanks!)


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06/2010 - Swan | 06/2012 - Dolphin | 01/2013 - All Star Sports



Last edited by CanadianGuy; 05-03-2010 at 05:07 AM.
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Old 04-29-2010, 08:22 AM   #2
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nicely done!

very informative... well done, thank you

from, one of your biggest fans!
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Old 04-29-2010, 08:24 AM   #3
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All I can say is woohoo!!!
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8/09 Pop FD
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8/11 FREE Dinning!!
8/12 Free Dinning Again!!
8/13 Free Dinning Pin Again!!
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Old 04-29-2010, 08:42 AM   #4
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Can you book Free Dining in a Ft. Wilderness Cabin? It has been said that it can not be booked for ASMU Family Suite. I have a friend that might be interested.
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Old 04-29-2010, 08:50 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mom2taylorandemily View Post
Can you book Free Dining in a Ft. Wilderness Cabin? It has been said that it can not be booked for ASMU Family Suite. I have a friend that might be interested.
Not sure.. probably have to call to find out.
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06/2006 - Pop Century | 03/2007 - Pop Century | 06/2007 - Coronado Springs
12/2007 - All Star Sports | 06/2008 - Pop Century | 09/2008 - All Star Sports
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Old 04-29-2010, 09:11 AM   #6
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same CRO agent twice!

What are the chances that you'd call at 7 am and 10 am on the same day and get the exact same CRO agent? It happened to me just now...... even the agent was SHOCKED!

FD here we come!
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Old 04-29-2010, 09:14 AM   #7
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It's $10/adult/day to go from Quick Service Dining to Regular Dining.....but what about regular dining to deluxe dining? Is it just the difference in price? Thanks.
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Old 04-29-2010, 09:18 AM   #8
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It is the difference in price .. but because there are sometimes different prices for different dates.. (Holiday Dining Surcharge) call to confirm the exact upgrade cost for your situation.
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Everything You Need to Know About Discount Codes & PINS For Disney Resorts

06/1995 - All Star Music | 11/1998 - Wilderness Lodge | 10/1999 - Disneyland
06/2006 - Pop Century | 03/2007 - Pop Century | 06/2007 - Coronado Springs
12/2007 - All Star Sports | 06/2008 - Pop Century | 09/2008 - All Star Sports
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Old 04-29-2010, 09:21 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hillertexas View Post
It's $10/adult/day to go from Quick Service Dining to Regular Dining.....but what about regular dining to deluxe dining? Is it just the difference in price? Thanks.
Yes, it's just the difference in price.
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Old 04-29-2010, 11:34 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by mom2taylorandemily View Post
Can you book Free Dining in a Ft. Wilderness Cabin? It has been said that it can not be booked for ASMU Family Suite. I have a friend that might be interested.

Yes you can.
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Old 04-29-2010, 11:37 AM   #11
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Just saw the promotion on Disneyrewards.com now they have a chart that breaks down the price per day depending on what level resort...it says 60.00 per day per person. Is that including the tax on tickets and hotel stay? Also what does 1 junior and 1 child mean? My son is 3 and daugther is 7, arent they both children?
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Old 04-29-2010, 10:07 PM   #12
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First post here! I have been listening to the podcast for about a year and lurking on the boards for a few months planning our Sept 29-Oct-5th trip, watching the free dining threads very closely. Thanks for all the great info I have learned alot. Well, we have the Disney visa and I finally booked our trip earlier this week when the kids stay, play and eat free code was released. I have three young boys, DH and I are traveling with my parents. We booked 2 rooms at CBR (pirate rooms!) with two kids in one room and our oldest in a room with my parents. My question is this, Could I call and change our reservation and have 3 kids and 1 adult in one room with the original kids play and eat free discount and put three adults in the second room and change the discount to the free dining? I tried to call Disney but they are closed for the night, and I was hoping someone here might know. I am just not sure if they let you change reservations this way after the deposit has been made and initial confirmations sent out. My husband would be very excited if I could save us even more money!

Thanks again for all the information, speculation and rumors that have kept me reading the past few months!
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Old 04-30-2010, 05:52 AM   #13
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Call to be sure but yes, I think you can do that.. not sure.
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Everything You Need to Know About Discount Codes & PINS For Disney Resorts

06/1995 - All Star Music | 11/1998 - Wilderness Lodge | 10/1999 - Disneyland
06/2006 - Pop Century | 03/2007 - Pop Century | 06/2007 - Coronado Springs
12/2007 - All Star Sports | 06/2008 - Pop Century | 09/2008 - All Star Sports
06/2010 - Swan | 06/2012 - Dolphin | 01/2013 - All Star Sports


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Old 04-30-2010, 09:03 AM   #14
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Call to be sure but yes, I think you can do that.. not sure.
OMG, that would be great for us. I could book myself and our oldest daughter in one room on the FD plan and book my husband and the other three little ones in another room with the Kids eat and play free promo. That would knock other $750.00 off of our price. I'm definitely going to see if I can work this out . . .
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Old 04-30-2010, 01:27 PM   #15
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Call to be sure but yes, I think you can do that.. not sure.
Just wanted to let you know that I just got off the phone with Disney reservations. I was able to split our rooms and discounts this way and after canceling the trip insurance (which I realized thanks to these boards we can purchase elsewhere for less or may not need) our savings on the 2 reservations was an additional $922!
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