With the Free Disney Dining Plan for August and September 2012 being announced earlier this week, I figured now was a good time to start up our Walt Disney World Disney Dining Plan FAQ Series!!
Our illustrious Disney Food for Families columnist, Erin Foster, has worked day and night (night and day) putting together a list of 81 Disney Dining Plan FAQs with thorough answers! (For those new to the Disney Dining Plan, see the specs here.)
You and I get to reap the benefit of her hard work as we post the first installment of our Disney Dining Plan FAQ Series — Kids and the Disney Dining Plan.
The Disney Dining Plan With Kids Under 3 Years Old
A few FAQs for those visiting with a toddler under 3 years old (Disney’s “children” classification begins at age 3 and goes through age 9).
Why can’t my under-three-year-old child can’t be on the dining plan.
That’s just the way it is. You may have a 2-year-old with a voracious appetite who you want to put on the dining plan. I don’t recommend it.
While theoretically you could fudge his age and say he was three, but then you’d be required to purchase theme park tickets for him. (Park entrance free for the under-threes.) It will be MUCH cheaper to just buy your two-year-old his own food at the restaurants.
How do I feed my 2-year-old at a traditional table service restaurant?
At regular table service restaurants, children under the age of three can share your meal.
They will be literally eating from your plate. If you want your child to have their own food, supplemental food, or their own beverage, you’ll have to pay for this separately.
How do I feed my 2-year-old at a quick service restaurant?
At quick service restaurants, children under the age of three can share your meal. They will be literally eating from your plate.
If you want your child to have their own food, supplemental food, or their own beverage, you’ll have to pay for this separately.
How do I feed my 2-year-old at a buffet service restaurant?
At buffet and family-style restaurants, children under age three can “eat from your plate” for free. Don’t take this literally. You can get them their own plate of food. They can eat whatever they want. The child’s beverage is included, you don’t have to pay extra.
Do I have to pay for my 2-year-old’s beverage?
At buffet and family style restaurants, no. At quick service and traditional menu-based restaurants, yes.
The Disney Dining Plan With Kids Ages 3-9
Questions about dining with Disney’s “child” category — kids ages 3-9!
Can children (ages 3-9) on the Dining Plan order from the adult menu at Quick Service meals?
Technically, no. The Dining Plan clearly states that children must order from the children’s menu whenever one exists. In most cases, however, there is no differentiation between adult and child quick service credits. Cast members will not know if any particular credit is being used for an adult or a child.
Let your conscience be your guide on this. Note that this could be changed at any time.
Can children (ages 3-9) on the Dining Plan order from the adult menu at Table Service meals?
No. The Dining Plan clearly states that children must order from the children’s menu whenever one exists.
The good news is that all food is for all people at the buffet-style restaurants. Although buffets have child-friendly sections with items like mac & cheese, chicken nuggets, and pizza, children are not required to limit their food choices to these items. If you have a hungry or adventurous 8-year-old, then the buffets may be a good choice for you.
Are there places where there is no kids’ menu so I don’t have worry about who orders what?
Yes. These are primarily quick service venues, including Toluca Turkey Legs, Casey’s Corner, Sommerfest, Yorkshire County Fish Shop, Main Street Bakery, Golden Oak Outpost, and others. Some table-service locations may also have only one (adult) menu for all guests.
My older child (age 10 or above) doesn’t like anything on the adult menu. Can he order from the children’s menu?
This fairly common occurrence is treated on a case by case basis. Technically, adults (anyone age 10 or over) are supposed to order from the adult menu and kids (ages 3-9) are supposed to order from the kids’ menu.
In practice, if an older child (or actual adult) doesn’t like any of the food on the adult menu, the server may be able to bring a larger-size portion of any of the food on the children’s menu. When this happens, an adult credit will be deducted from your account even though the guest is eating “kid” food.
One great question about whether the whole family needs to eat together.
Do all members of my family have to eat together when we’re on the Disney Dining Plan?
No. Family members can eat at different restaurants at different times. Just make sure a member of the family at each restaurant has their MagicBand or Key to the World card with which to pay.
Stay Tuned For More Disney Dining Plan FAQs!
We’ve got a LOT more where those came from, but hopefully we were able to answer a few of YOUR questions with today’s post in the series!
Have more Disney Dining Plan questions? Let us know what they are and we’ll add them to the list!
Have you ever used the Disney Dining Plan with kids in your party? Let us know some of the experiences you had! You’ll likely help out other guests by sharing your story!