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Old 02-25-2013, 03:14 PM   #1
JAZmommy
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Do they treat you differently on a dining plan?

We went to DW in 2011 and then just got back. We had a deluxe dining plan this trip. We were just going back over our experiences and were wondering if they treat you differently if your on a dining plan. We ate at several restaurants whose food was less then stellar but almost everywhere we ate the service was horrible!

For example:
We ate at flying fish cafe at The BoardWalk and not only did we have horrible service but one of the meals was inedible another the steak wasn't cook to whatever we ordered. We told the server about the meal (didn't even mention the steak) and she came up with every excuse in the book and acted like we didn't know what we were talking about. All we wanted was to let them know so someone else doesn't get served it. The point is she never apologized and at the end she finally said she'd take off the tip. What? We didn't ask for that it's not like she cooked the food and we tipped her anyway.

Does Disney have a "Disney is never wrong" policy? We had a similar experience at our hotel. Our room wasn't ready until after 4pm and then the keys weren't working for a while after that. We lost a lot of park time and never received an apology from anyone and We were in a $1400+/night room!!

Of course we had a wonderful magical time but for what we were paying we were surprised with such horrible service. At the hotel and restaurants.
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Old 02-25-2013, 03:24 PM   #2
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In my experience they don't treat you differently if you are on the dining plan.

I will say though that your room is never guaranteed to be ready by a certain time. The time the resort gives as check in is when they officially start releasing rooms to new guests. It doesn't mean everyone will get their room right at that time. Usually they are good about giving rooms earlier than the official check in time, but it depends on availability.

Also, if you were staying at a DVC resort, official check in time is 4 pm. Not sure where you were staying, but even at the other resorts check in is 3 pm. So they were not horribly out of line if you got your room after 4.

As far as what happened at the Flying Fish, I think you should have asked to speak to a manager. It sounds as if you had food that wasn't cooked properly, and a waitress who wasn't up to snuff. Not acceptable.
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Old 02-25-2013, 03:26 PM   #3
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I can't imagine why any guest would be treated differently from any other guest merely because they were on a prepaid dining plan.

If they did, and it happened at every restaurant, there would be a lot more complaints of this type.
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Old 02-25-2013, 04:15 PM   #4
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I never felt like we were treated differently on the dining plan (We have tried deluxe, the regular dining plan and paid as we went). Each time, though, there seemed to be restaurant where the service was stellar and restaurants where service was less than stellar. The places that are "regulars" for us, such as Tusker House and LTT, always have great service. That's why they are regulars! We have heard bad reviews on the service of Flying Fish, which is one reason we have never been there

I would add, though, that I think each time we've gone to Disney, our experiences have been worse and worse, especially in the customer service department. It is to the point that we have decided to lay off of WDW for a while. There were many things that went wrong on our last trip, but dining wasn't one of them!
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Old 02-25-2013, 04:18 PM   #5
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We've done both ways, and I haven't noticed a difference.
Sometimes we have trouble with our service. Other times we don't.

The biggest issue we had while we were on the dining plan was trying to get the credits applied correctly.
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Old 02-25-2013, 08:34 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JAZmommy View Post
We went to DW in 2011 and then just got back. We had a deluxe dining plan this trip. We were just going back over our experiences and were wondering if they treat you differently if your on a dining plan. We ate at several restaurants whose food was less then stellar but almost everywhere we ate the service was horrible!

For example:
We ate at flying fish cafe at The BoardWalk and not only did we have horrible service but one of the meals was inedible another the steak wasn't cook to whatever we ordered. We told the server about the meal (didn't even mention the steak) and she came up with every excuse in the book and acted like we didn't know what we were talking about. All we wanted was to let them know so someone else doesn't get served it. The point is she never apologized and at the end she finally said she'd take off the tip. What? We didn't ask for that it's not like she cooked the food and we tipped her anyway.

Does Disney have a "Disney is never wrong" policy? We had a similar experience at our hotel. Our room wasn't ready until after 4pm and then the keys weren't working for a while after that. We lost a lot of park time and never received an apology from anyone and We were in a $1400+/night room!!

Of course we had a wonderful magical time but for what we were paying we were surprised with such horrible service. At the hotel and restaurants.
We were a group of 8 on the dining plan September 2012. I was wondering if service would be at all affected by the fact that we would have an automatic gratuity of 18% added (groups of 6 or more). It wasn't and I was very pleased. I found the service to be very good to excellent in all 8 restaurants we dined at. Every time we ended up tipping more than the required 18%.
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Old 02-26-2013, 08:39 AM   #7
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Tipping is discussed only on the Tipping Thread on the main board, but the 18% tip applies to groups of 6 or more whether they are on the dining plan or not.
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Old 02-26-2013, 09:06 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by TDC Nala View Post
Tipping is discussed only on the Tipping Thread on the main board, but the 18% tip applies to groups of 6 or more whether they are on the dining plan or not.
Sorry, just looking for clarification - is my comment not allowed because I mentioned tipping in it? If so, I was not aware of that, thank you.

Regardless, I only meant that even though we were on the dining plan and had the automatic gratuity added that the servers still did not seem to give us anything less than great service.
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Old 02-26-2013, 09:16 AM   #9
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If it becomes a discussion about tipping it'll need to be closed.

The OP states that "almost everywhere" they went the service was horrible. That's pretty unusual for reviews on this board and it's never been my personal experience even back when I did use the dining plan.
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Old 02-26-2013, 10:47 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by TDC Nala View Post
If it becomes a discussion about tipping it'll need to be closed.
Ah, okay. Gotcha. Thanks!
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Old 02-26-2013, 02:12 PM   #11
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We've paid oop and on dining plan,and never noticed any difference either.
It is always asked as soon as we've sat down though- is that the norm?

If I was paying $1400 per night,if the slightest little thing was not right,I'd be on the case!
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Old 02-26-2013, 02:14 PM   #12
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Yes, it's normal to be asked, as the server must know before the orders are taken if the guests are on the dining plan. Dining plan orders are rung up differently from other orders. It also gives the server the chance to explain what the plan would or would not cover.
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Old 02-27-2013, 02:33 PM   #13
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We have paid OOP on trips and had the DDP on trips and we never got treated any differently at either time. Now there were some places that had super slow service like T-Rex and Rainforest but that was just because there were so many other ppl in there being waited on too. Our T-Rex meal took over 2 hours. But it was not the servers fault. It took 55 minutes from the time we ordered until the time out food showed up and the server never came to let us know why it was taking so long. Good thing we rarely need drink refills because we would have been SOL.
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Old 02-27-2013, 07:30 PM   #14
JAZmommy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TDC Nala
If it becomes a discussion about tipping it'll need to be closed.

The OP states that "almost everywhere" they went the service was horrible. That's pretty unusual for reviews on this board and it's never been my personal experience even back when I did use the dining plan.
Well then I guess we got unlucky! We ate at Akershus for dinner, Crystal Palace for breakfast, Hollywood Brown Derby, Flying Fish, 1900 Park Fare, 50's Cafe, Tusker House, ...

The best service was at Crystal Palace and the breakfast was good for buffet.

The food was terrible at Akershus and 1900. And just ok at 50's and Tusker.

The best meal I had was at Brown Derby. The service was ok but the food was sooo good. I literally ate everything off my plate!!

I just think if your paying 300 plus 50 tip for a meal you shouldn't have empty glasses. Also at Flying Fish, we had to wait 20 mins to get in then it took another 2.5 hours to get through apps entree and desert on top of the other problems we had with our food.
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Old 02-27-2013, 08:13 PM   #15
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The only place I have ever complained about the service was at 50's prime time. My family was at one table and next to us were my husband's parents and his sister and her husband. They had already completed their meals when ours had arrived. We had DDP and they didn't, but they ordered A LOT of alcohol! I don't know if it was the fact that their bill was going to be more than ours or the DDP, the servers did not know that we were a family, just at different tables.

The other place that we have mediocre service was at Hollywood Brown Derby, and we found our dishes ok, but as far as my family, we won't go back,
yet, OP's experience was great.

I will say the time we went when free dining was offered (we were not eligible since we are DVC) The service was rushed, at almost every TS we went to, not necessarily bad, just rushed.

I had another thought, I wonder if in the "off season" more seasoned servers take vacation or other time off, and the less experienced servers are the ones that get more hours, in their absence.
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