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Old 04-28-2013, 11:48 AM   #856
talitha
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Questions about free dining

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Originally Posted by black562 View Post
1. Either or and it comes down to preference.

2. No, you have to book your tickets at the same time.

Thank you! I am new so I was wondering what is your preference and why? (hoping to learn from all you disney pros)
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Old 04-28-2013, 11:55 AM   #857
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Well, we were originally planning on going from Nov 1-10, anticipating free dining, but those plans had to be changed because I found out I was pregnant! So we changed our reservation to October 3-12, a month earlier, also hoping for free dining. But now with free dining (un)officially announced, we changed AGAIN, to September 25-Oct 4! We are lucky, because our dates are very flexible. IF free dining is offered from Oct 3-12, we will switch back. But for now, looks like were going in September.
Is there a big difference in weather between end of Sept and beginning of Oct?
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Old 04-28-2013, 12:06 PM   #858
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Wink Thanks

for sharing this great info about free dining.
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Old 04-28-2013, 12:24 PM   #859
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crystalkunzel
Well, we were originally planning on going from Nov 1-10, anticipating free dining, but those plans had to be changed because I found out I was pregnant! So we changed our reservation to October 3-12, a month earlier, also hoping for free dining. But now with free dining (un)officially announced, we changed AGAIN, to September 25-Oct 4! We are lucky, because our dates are very flexible. IF free dining is offered from Oct 3-12, we will switch back. But for now, looks like were going in September.
Is there a big difference in weather between end of Sept and beginning of Oct?
September weather is unpredictable. Some years it has been super hot, last year it was lovely. In fact, it was too cool to swim most days (well, for us anyway, we are used to really hot weather!). The heat doesn't bother us because most of the parks have lots of air conditioned attractions and restaurants, not like six flags. That place is HOT!!
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Old 04-28-2013, 01:08 PM   #860
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Is there a big difference in weather between end of Sept and beginning of Oct?
You need to plan for September to be incredibly hot, especially being pregnant you will need to take a lot of breaks and drink A LOT of water.
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Old 04-28-2013, 01:43 PM   #861
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September weather is unpredictable. Some years it has been super hot, last year it was lovely. In fact, it was too cool to swim most days (well, for us anyway, we are used to really hot weather!). The heat doesn't bother us because most of the parks have lots of air conditioned attractions and restaurants, not like six flags. That place is HOT!!
We're southerners, so we like it hot to swim too!

Last year, one of the lifeguards at the CR laughed at me because I thought the pool was too cool for swimming. The kids & DH swam, but I just sat on the edge.

He laughed & said, "You're from the south, aren't you?"
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Old 04-28-2013, 01:50 PM   #862
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Thank you! I am new so I was wondering what is your preference and why? (hoping to learn from all you disney pros)
I just wanted to throw my 2 cents in on this. I would personally never use a travel agent. They're not always available when you need them. For instance when free dining opens up I'm always calling the minute the phone lines open to try to be sure to get locked in. If you've booked with a travel agent they are the ones that need to make changes to your reservations. You can't call and make any changes yourself.

I'm one that wants to handle everything myself. If something is messed up then I can only blame myself.
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Last edited by MuchLovedMama; 04-28-2013 at 02:06 PM. Reason: Was incorrect about TA having to make dining reservations. Sorry for the confusion on that!
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Old 04-28-2013, 01:55 PM   #863
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I just wanted to throw my 2 cents in on this. I would personally never use a travel agent. They're not always available when you need them. For instance when free dining opens up I'm always calling the minute the phone lines open to try to be sure to get locked in. If you've booked with a travel agent they are the ones that need to make changes to your reservations. You can't call and make any changes yourself.

I think this might be true with dining reservations as well if I remember correctly. I think they may have to set those up as well.

I'm one that wants to handle everything myself. If something is messed up then I can only blame myself.
I'm a travel agent, and I would agree with this post. Most TA's aren't well versed in Disney discounts, and may forget, or be too late to apply a discount to your reservation. If you're comfortable booking on your own, I say go for it! As for dining reservations, you can do them on your own whether or not you've used a TA to book.
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Old 04-28-2013, 01:56 PM   #864
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Is there a big difference in weather between end of Sept and beginning of Oct?
I can't speak for October but September is usually great for us. We went in 1998, 2000, 2008, 2010 & 2012. The temps are usually very manageable for us and up until last year we were very lucky and would only get about an hour of rain during our entire week. Last year we went 15th-22nd and we had rain every single day but one. We were still able to pretty much do everything that we wanted but there were a few times where we just had to leave the parks because the outlook was rain for hours. It was cooler too. We only swam twice and when we did it was too cool to stay in for long.

I think last year was just bad luck or me just jinxing us because I kept telling the other 2 parties ahead of time that went with us that we "never ever get rain".

Typically it's hot but not unbearable.
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Old 04-28-2013, 02:02 PM   #865
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Originally Posted by MuchLovedMama View Post
I just wanted to throw my 2 cents in on this. I would personally never use a travel agent. They're not always available when you need them. For instance when free dining opens up I'm always calling the minute the phone lines open to try to be sure to get locked in. If you've booked with a travel agent they are the ones that need to make changes to your reservations. You can't call and make any changes yourself.

I think this might be true with dining reservations as well if I remember correctly. I think they may have to set those up as well.

I'm one that wants to handle everything myself. If something is messed up then I can only blame myself.
We book our package through AAA because we like some of the package extras like the AAA "Diamond Parking" Pass - we drive to WDW & normally drive both to AK & to DHS (we use Disney transportation for MK & EPCOT).

We've also, in the past, taken advantage of the AAA Story Time w/ a Character experience.

W/ the AAA package, there are also some merchandise discounts like a 10% discount at the World of Disney store, discounts at the marinas, some free arcade points, etc.

Additionally, if there are no Disney discounts, there is always a small AAA discount.

We have a really good AAA agent. Last year, our local AAA agent closed early one afternoon due to bad weather, & she stayed in order to get our resort booked. (I didn't ask her to do this! )

I will admit that I am a little worried about getting the free dining added to our package this year, since we're already booked. Last year, she booked our package for us the day the Free Dining was released to Disney Visa holders (which was on a Friday in early March) & then she added the Free Dining to our package the following Monday when the Free Dining was released to the general public w/ no problem. I hope this year is no different - but, last year, free dining was released in early March. Since it's 2 months later this year, I hope everything isn't more booked already, if that makes sense. I'm going to email her this week & for her thoughts & opinion.

Anyway, I always make our own ADRs.
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Old 04-28-2013, 02:08 PM   #866
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That sounds great! I might have to rethink my trip from January to September!
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Old 04-28-2013, 02:16 PM   #867
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If I think we will be going 9/2, should I book now or wait until the offer is announced?

If we book now, do we add dining now as well or just the room/tix?

I'm afraid if we wait, we may not have availability...? Advice?
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Old 04-28-2013, 02:25 PM   #868
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If I think we will be going 9/2, should I book now or wait until the offer is announced?

If we book now, do we add dining now as well or just the room/tix?

I'm afraid if we wait, we may not have availability...? Advice?
They have a set amount of rooms set aside for the free dining so it truly doesn't matter if you already have a reservation or not. If the rooms that they have set aside for that sell out before you get through to them you'll be out of luck regardless of whether or not you already have a room reserved.

I usually have a package booked with room & tickets and when free dining comes along I just call and ask if they can switch me over to the free dining promotion. That's when the dining is added for me. I don't think it really matter if you want to book ahead of time or not. I just like knowing that I have something booked.
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Old 04-28-2013, 02:47 PM   #869
talitha
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Thank you

Thank you so much for your replies!
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Old 04-28-2013, 03:09 PM   #870
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We love the FD and have had it on our previous 3 trips and always have our reservations already and just have the option added which takes away from what we have left to pay.
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