Making the Most of the Disney Dining Plan- Part 3- Tuesday’s Tip

Do you enjoy flavors from around the world?

Tuesday’s Tip- Think about using your snack credits at Epcot’s world showcase!

I know from personal experience that the portion sizes on many Disney entrees are quite large.  My husband and I often end up sharing a snack, if and when we get them at all.  Don’t let those snack credits go to waste though! There is no stipulation on how and when you use your dining credits.

So let’s say you’re doing a 5 night, 6 day stay for 2 people.  Between the  two people you’ll have 10 snack credits (at minimum with the quick service plan).  You can use all 10 snack credits in one day if you wanted to.  Using those snack credits in the world showcase can not only be a  good value for your snack credits, but can also allow you to indulge in  the flavors from around the globe!

You can use your snack credits at many locations.  Just look for this logo, which indicates that it’s a snack on the dining plan

Snack Credit logo

Snack Credit logo

Here are some of my favorite snacks from the different countries-

Mexico- Churros with caramel sauce !!!!  At 3.99, that is a solid use of a snack credit!  These are available at La Cantina De San Angel

Norway- The sweet pretzel with chocolate is the best value at $4.49, but one of my favs is the School Bread.  It isn’t a great value as a snack credit at $2.69, but it sure is tasty! If you’re looking for something a little healthier, you can also use a snack credit on a salad with a $3.99 value. All of these options are available at the Kringla Bakeri Og Kafe.

Norway's sweet pretzel

Norway’s sweet pretzel

China-  I am not a fan of Egg Rolls ($3.99), but this is one of the few options if you’re looking to use a snack credit in China.  You can also use your snack credits for iced and hot tea if you’re thirsty.  Prices on the tea range from $3.19 to $4.25.

Germany- You’ve got to do the Authentic pretzel in Germany!!!  Super yummy!  The price of $4.29 makes it another excellent value for the snack credit.  These are available at both Sommerfest and the pretzel carts.

Sommerfest Menu

Sommerfest Menu

Italy- Unfortunately there isn’t anything that I’ve seen that you can use the snack credit on here.  If you really want to try eating or drinking something here, you’ll pay out of pocket, but the gelato, cannoli, or a glass of wine would be my pick 🙂

The American Adventure- This one is easy for me… I’d have to go with the Jalepeño cream cheese stuffed pretzel!  The price of $4.29 makes it a great value, and so many other pavilions have sweets as their snack credits that this one is a nice change!  You can find this at the Fife and Drum Tavern.  If you want even more bang for you buck on a snack credit go with the chili cheese fries at Liberty Inn.

Japan- Mmmmmm sushi!  There are three sushi options all coming in at $4.98.  Yummy and an excellent snack credit value, found at the Kabuki Cafe.

Sushi at the Kabuki Cafe

Sushi at the Kabuki Cafe

Morocco- has one of my favorite snacks in the world showcase, the tangerine cous-cous salad.  I know it sounds weird but you can order this side dish and its super yummy.  Unfortunately, no snack credits are accepted in Morocco.  They also offer tabouli and hummus.  It’s a real bummer that they don’t take the snack credits, but out of pocket these snacks are only $2.99.

France- Welcome to the mother load of snack options!  The lobster bisque is the most valuable use of a snack credit as it is $4.90, but one of my favorites is the bacon and cheese roll.  There are TONS of snack options here, and you really can’t go wrong.  Everything is wonderful!

England- What would a trip to England be without Fish and Chips?  The fish and chips aren’t a snack credit, but you can get just the chips with the snack credit.  Only $2.69 it’s not the best snack credit value, but sure is tasty with some malt vinegar!

Canada-  There is no quick service restaurant in this pavilion and there is only one snack cart.  There you can use a snack credit on pop corn, but it isn’t unique to Canada.  My recommendation is to go in the gift shop and look for unique Canadian candies or treats that are imported.  Remember to look for the logo that indicates that it is a snack credit!

Fun Fact Friday- Main Street USA

I’ve done a LOT of Disney research and reading, because let’s face it… I love Disney parks, and consider Walt Disney to be one of my idols!  I’ve heard many times that Main Street USA is supposedly based on Walt’s childhood hometown of Marceline Missouri.

After more research I’ve discovered however that Main Street USA was based on two towns!  A man named Harper Goff worked along side of Walt Disney when developing Main Street USA.  He grew up in Fort Collins, Colorado and showed Walt photos of his hometown.  Main Street USA is based on elements of both Marceline, and Fort Collins.

Additional Fun Fact- each Disney Park worldwide has their own version of Main Street USA, although it may have a different name in some international locations.

Main Street- Fort Collins, Colorado

Main Street- Fort Collins, Colorado

Main Street- Marceline Missouri

Main Street- Marceline Missouri

Main Street USA, Disneyland

Main Street USA, Disneyland

ashley@charmingtravelsllc.com

ashley@charmingtravelsllc.com

Words of Walt- Main Street USA

Today’s post is about the first thing you will see when you walk into WDW’s Magic Kingdom, or Disneyland!  Main Street USA 🙂

“Main Street, USA is America at the turn of the century- the crossroads of an era.  The gas lamps and the electric lamp- the horse-drawn car and auto car.  Main Street is everyone’s hometown- the heartline of America.”

Check in tomorrow for some fun facts about Main Street USA!

Main Street USA, Disneyland

Main Street USA, Disneyland

Main Street USA- Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World

Main Street USA- Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World

The Quotable Walt Disney compiled by Dave Smith

The Quotable Walt Disney compiled by Dave Smith

ashley@charmingtravelsllc.com

ashley@charmingtravelsllc.com

Tuesday’s Tip- Making the Most of the Disney Dining Plan, Part 2

Tuesday’s Tip- Don’t use your dining credits on quick service breakfasts. *** (see exception at the very bottom)***

I’ve traveled to Disney MANY times, and I’ve had trips where I’ve used the Dining plan, and trips where I haven’t used the dining plan.  One of the things that I’ve learned along the way is to not use my dining plan quick service credits on breakfast.  All quick service meals include an entree, dessert, and drink.  When you use the credit for breakfast, you’re losing out on a dessert, as there are no desserts with breakfast, the savings are even less if you’re a coffee drinker.  You get a mug that you can refill at your resort, so you don’t even need to use your drink option on coffee.  And most breakfast entrees are significantly less expensive than lunch entrees.  If you’re trying to get the most bang for your buck, this isn’t the way.

For example, here is a sample of a Disney resort breakfast menu vs. a Disney resort lunch menu.  You’ll notice that the breakfast prices are considerably less expensive (and did I mention you get a dessert with lunch!?!)

Pop Century Breakfast Entrees

Pop Century Breakfast Entrees

Pop Century Lunch Entrees

Pop Century Lunch Entrees

quick service breakfast

Okay, so with that being said, you still have to eat breakfast!  Here are some tips-

1) Bring non-perishable breakfast items in your luggage and plan to eat those!  All resorts have a toaster in the food court area where you can toast your own bagels or breads.  Granola bars are a great option as well as cereal!  You can get a small carton of milk to use for cereal from the food court.

2) Consider using your snack credits at breakfast time.  With all dining plans you get 1 snack per person, per day.  Grab a pastry or a muffin from the self serve area in your resort’s dining area and fill your resort mug with your beverage, and bam, you’ve got yourself a quick breakfast that can maximize your dining plan.

3) If you love breakfast foods, consider using a table service credit at one of the character breakfasts!  Chef Mickey’s at the Contemporary Resort is great or the Ohana Breakfast at the Polynesian, as well as the Crystal Palace at the Magic Kingdom!

Meet Lilo and Stitch at the Ohana breakfast

Meet Lilo and Stitch at the Ohana breakfast

Crystal Palace Breakfast Buffet

Crystal Palace Breakfast Buffet

4) Even with the dining plan you may end up spending some out of pocket money for meals… save those dining credits for lunches and dinners and if you have to pay additional money for a meal do it at breakfast!

**** Here is a great exception to the “Don’t use your quick service meals on breakfast”  Be Our Guest Restaurant at the Magic Kingdom JUST started serving breakfast.  The cost is $19.99 for adults, and $11.99 for children.  It includes a breakfast entree, pastries, and a beverage.  This still counts as a quick service restaurant at breakfast, so by ALL means, try to visit and get a lot of bang for your buck at this location!

Be Our Guest Adult entrees

Be Our Guest Adult entrees

Want even more tips on planning your disney vacation, and maximizing your dining credits?  Book your vacation with Ashley from Charming Travels LLC.  Contact her today for your free quote- ashley@charmingtravelsllc.com

ashley@charmingtravelsllc.com

ashley@charmingtravelsllc.com

Making the Most of the Dining Plan Part 1

I am a big fan of the Disney Dining Plan option that you can add onto your vacation when staying on Disney Property.

I have personally done trips that included the Dining Plan as well as trips without the Dining Plan and I have learned so much about how to make the most of using the Dining Plan!

For the next few weeks I will be sharing things that I’ve learned along the way to get the most bang for your buck!

In today’s post I am just outlining the different dining plans and what they include!

There are several Dining Plan levels to fit different needs and budgets all the way from meeting the essentials all the way up to a truly premium experience!

The Quick Service Dining Plan- Includes 2 quick service meals an 1 snack per person per night of your stay.  You also get a resort refillable mug.

What is a quick service meal?  Those are meals where you go to a counter, order you food, and are served food on a tray and you find seating on your own. A quick service meal includes an entree (usually comes with a side), a dessert, and a drink (either a fountain drink or bottled beverage).

How much does the quick service dining plan cost?  For an adult the price is $41.99 per adult per night, and for children (age 3-9) the price is $16.03 per child per night.

Quick service style meal

Quick service style meal

The Disney Dining Plan– Includes 1 quick service meal, 1 table service meal, and 1 snack per person, per night of your stay. You also get a resort refillable mug.

What is a Table Service meal?  A table service meal is a traditional sit down restaurant.  You generally will need a reservation, you will be seated by a host or hostess, and will be taken care of by a waiter or waitress.  A table service meal includes an entree (generally with a side), a dessert, and a beverage.  There are also buffets and and character dining experiences that qualify as a table service meal.

How much does the Disney Dining Plan cost? For an adult the price is $60.04 per adult per night, and for children (age 3-9) the price is $19.23 per child per night.

Table Service Style Meal

Table Service Style Meal

Disney’s Deluxe Dining Plan– Includes 3 meals (table service, or quick service) and 2 snacks per person per night.  You also get a resort refillable mug.

How much does the Disney Deluxe Dining Plan cost? For an adult the price is $109.53 per adult per night, and for children (age 3-9) the price is $29.86 per child per night.

Disney Premium Dining Plan- Includes 3 meals (table service or quick service) and 2 snacks per person per night, unlimited use of select recreation activities (including golf), 1 admission per person to La Nouba, preferred firework viewing, unlimited admissions to select theme park tours.

How much does the Disney Premium Dining Plan cost? For an adult the price is $204 per adult per night, and for children (age 3-9) the price is $149 per child per night.

Interested in booking your own Disney trip?  Be sure to contact Ashley with Charming Travels LLC- ashley@charmingtravelsllc.com

She will get you set up with a free quote including any of these amazing dining plans!

ashley@charmingtravelsllc.com

ashley@charmingtravelsllc.com

Fun Fact Friday- The Sorcerer’s Apprentice

Fun Fact- Did you know that the Sorcerer in the Fantasia clip- “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice” had a name?  His name is Yen Sid.  This may seem like a peculiar name, but if you look closely it is Disney spelled backwards!  Yen Sid was not named in the film, but he was named by the animators as a tribute to Walt.  Yen Sid can be seen in both Fantasia and Fantasia 2000, as well as the Kingdom Hearts video game.

Yen Sid

Yen Sid

ashley@charmingtravelsllc.com

ashley@charmingtravelsllc.com

Words of Walt- The Parks

If you’ve ever visited a Disney Park, they are among some of the cleanest and most detailed oriented parks in the world!  In fact Disney parks don’t even sell gum, and cast members aren’t allowed to walk past a piece of trash without picking it up.  The parks are pristine, and that goes all the way back to the parks beginning-

“When I started on Disneyland, my wife used to say, ‘But why do you want to build an amusement park?  They’re so dirty.’  I told her that was just the point- mine wouldn’t be.”

I love the cleanliness at the parks 🙂  Thanks Walt!

The Quotable Walt Disney compiled by Dave Smith

The Quotable Walt Disney compiled by Dave Smith

ashley@charmingtravelsllc.com

ashley@charmingtravelsllc.com

Tuesday’s Tip- Register today for the Wine and Dine Half Marathon

Today is the day to register for the Wine and Dine 1/2 marathon!

Registration opens at 12:00pm EST.

During Wine and Dine weekend there are several race options; The Wine and Dine 1/2 Marathon, Mickey’s Jingle Jungle 5k, and Disney’s Kid Races. Below are the prices for the races-

Wine and Dine 1/2 Marathon Race fees

Wine and Dine 1/2 Marathon Race fees

Visit http://www.RunDisney.com to register for the race.

This is the only RunDisney 1/2 marathon that takes place in the evening.  And another perk is that it takes place during Epcot’s Food and Wine Festival!

Wine and Dine 1/2 Marathon Start Line

Wine and Dine 1/2 Marathon Start Line

While I myself have run quite a few of RunDisney’s events, I have never run the Wine and Dine Half Marathon!  My friend Teresa has run this race, so here are some questions that I asked her and her responses-

Q) This is Disney’s only night time 1/2 marathon- are there as many characters out as there are during the morning 1/2?

A) “Yes! Mickey and Minnie are at the finish line dressed in their “chef” clothing. There is some sort of entertainment or character throughout the race just like in the morning races. Last year most of them were still out during the pouring rain, they just positioned them under cover.”

Q) What is your favorite part of the W&D half?

A) “Wine & Dine has a special place in my heart. It was the very first half marathon I ever ran, and I went back last year for the 5th anniversary to celebrate MY 4 years of running longer races. I am not a morning runner, so having the 10pm start is much easier for me. The wait for the start doesn’t seem as long as it does at 4am. **My favorite part is getting to Hollywood Studios and the Osborne Family Lights. When I turn that corner, I stop in my tracks (off to one side per runner etiquette, of course… :-))”

Q) Other than it being a night race, are there any other major differences?

A) “There seems to be more space than the other races. I think there is a smaller number of participants allowed – so not as many bottleneck areas. They also have a limited number of host resorts – so be sure to know ahead of time for booking hotel rooms.”

“Then there is the party after the race until 4am? (I think that’s when it ends.) I was so exhausted after both races that I just wanted to go back to my room, get a shower and go to bed.”

“Plus, you get to see 3 parks instead of the usual 2 parks for morning 1/2 marathon races. It is nice to have a different route to see.”

Q) Why would you recommend this 1/2 marathon

A)  “I would recommend this race because it is a night race. The parks are lit up and everything sparkles. There is just as much Disney Magic as any other race – and if you can stay up until 4am, you can also enjoy Epcot included in the race fee.

I also recommend the 5k that morning – Mickey’s Jingle Jungle. It is all at Animal Kingdom and has a Christmas theme. They pump out the snow!!!”

Are you now registered and need help planning your trip?  Contact Ashley at Charming Travels LLC – ashley@charmingtravelsllc.com

ashley@charmingtravelsllc.com

ashley@charmingtravelsllc.com

Words of Walt- Family Films

Here is what Walt Disney has to say about Family Films-

“A family picture is one the kids can take their parents to see and not be embarrassed.  I think that by producing family films we reach the audience which has been dormant at the box office for a long time.  I don’t like downbeat pictures and I cannot believe that the average family does either.  Personally, when I go to the theater I don’t want to come out depressed.  That’s why we make the kind of films so many label ‘family type.’  We avoid messages and have opened up new doors and broadened the field for ourselves by producing human stories, with comedy and drama mixed.”

What is your favorite Disney family film????

The Quotable Walt Disney compiled by Dave Smith

The Quotable Walt Disney compiled by Dave Smith

ashley@charmingtravelsllc.com

ashley@charmingtravelsllc.com

Tuesday’s Tip- RESEARCH!!!!

Good morning Mouskaholics,

I know it’s been a while, but I cannot stress today’s Tuesday Tip enough.  If you are going to Disney for the first time do your research!!!!  You don’t even have to do the research on your own, chances are you know at least 1 person in your life who LOVES Disney, and if you don’t, you probably know someone who has at least been there before!  Without doing your research you’re going to waste your precious vacation time waiting in lines for attractions that you really don’t want to see, and waste time looking at menus only to decide to go somewhere else.

Did you know that on the Disney website you can find descriptions of all the attractions and rides for each park?  If that doesn’t give you enough insight to decide if you want to ride it, or see it, head to youtube!  Chances are you will be able to find a video of the ride!

Description of Goofy's Barnstormer from Disney's website

Description of Goofy’s Barnstormer from Disney’s website


Same goes for menus!  All the menus for quick service and table service restaurants alike can be accessed from the disney website, AND the My Disney Experience App.

Flame Tree BBQ Menu

Flame Tree BBQ Menu

This is where it can also be very valuable to book your trip through a Disney Travel Professional!  These travel agents know Disney inside and out and specialize in helping you plan your magical vacation AND answering all of your questions to make sure you have the best possible trip!

If you have questions about traveling to Disney, always feel free to Ask Ashley, by leaving a comment on the blog, or by asking on the Confessions of a Mouskaholic page on facebook!

If you are interested in booking your Disney vacation be sure to contact Ashley@charmingtravelsllc.com.  She is a Disney Travel Professional and can help you with all of your booking and planning needs!

ashley@charmingtravelsllc.com

ashley@charmingtravelsllc.com