Want to avoid that long line of princess laden kids waiting to meet Cinderella?
Well, then make a reservation for a character meal. Character dining allows you to enjoy a great meal and the characters come to you! Now, there are few caveats that go along with enjoying a character dining experience.
First, you need to think about the fact that going to have to work your buffet visits around the characters visitation schedule. Characters have a rotation when they come visit tables at a character dining experience and your host or wait staff will let you know when they’re likely to visit your table. This means you might have to stop mid Mickey waffle bite, get your camera, pretty everybody up and get a picture. But don’t worry, you’ll have plenty of time to go back and get that huge heaping mound of gummy bears from the desert area.
Second, pictures with the characters can include everyone. So for all those parents and grandparents out there that often forget to put themselves in the pictures go ahead and ask the wait staff or the cast member escorting the character to take that picture for you.
Thirdly, at times, it may seem rushed but it’s really not. Take some time with the characters, get great photos, and allow the characters to interact with you and your kids. One thing you can do though to make things go as smoothly as possible is to get all the stuff you want picture ready before they come around to the table. This includes a big fat pen or marker and your autograph book or anything else you want the picture. The more prepared you are the more time you get with them.
There is a lot of food at the character dining meals that function as a buffet. However, just because it’s a buffet doesn’t mean you have to eat all of it. Eat as you wish and enjoy the time you have with the characters while others are standing in the hot sun.
A note on cost.
These meals are more expensive than a quick service option, however, what you’re paying for is the 1 on 1 time with the characters in a convenient location where you can double it up with a good meal. Many people feel it’s well worth the money.
Each character dining experience comes with a different menu. Make sure you read the menus on the My Disney Experience app under – “Things To Do, Make Reservations”, to be sure that the menu suits you and/or your family. Each of the character dining experiences has a variety of foods that should appease both typical eaters as well as those with special needs including vegan and vegetarian.
However, if you have other unique needs and/or allergy issues you can always call ahead and talk to someone in dining reservations. When you arrive let your wait staff know and they will actually bring out a chef to go over your specific needs and assure you get the most amazing experience possible.
Celebrating a special occasion?
You can the cast member taking your reservation or the cast members at the restaurant know and they’ll be sure to make you feel extra special … maybe a celebration card or cupcake depending on the site. Get that birthday button or retirement button ready and wear it to your meal and often a special prize surprise awaits you. Another celebration option is to use the Disney cake service and have something delivered to your table. Those require advance reservations and consultation with a cast member.
So, wanna sit back, enjoy a good meal, and see your kids faces light up while characters come directly to their table and spend quality time with them? Then a character dining experience could be for you. All of these experiences take reservations and I highly suggest you consider doing that in advance. Guests staying on property can make those reservations 180 days in advance. If you forgot or want to add one it never hurts to try and call the day of and grab a reservation. Sometimes reservations are available as people cancel all the time.