Mom and daughter on Expedition Everest
  • On Nov 11, 2008
    Danielle Asked Note: This answer was provided prior to the change to planDisney and may still contain references to Disney Parks Moms Panel.

    Experiences, policies, pricing and other offerings are subject to change and may have changed since the date of this answer.

    We are making our first trip to WDW in Feb 09 and I am trying to plan meals before shows and parades but am not sure how much time we will need. Can you be in and out of most table service restaurants in an hour?

    Once you are seated, you can be out of most of the table service restaurants in about an hour. The character meals are all timed so that the characters come around to each table in the restaurant over the course of an hour or a bit less than that.

    I think you'll find that buffet-style restaurants will move the most quickly. Since you are not waiting for your server to bring you your food, you can often get through these meals in about 45 minutes. Multiple-course signature dining experiences may take you longer than an hour. I once had a two-hour-long meal at the California Grill. We had drinks, appetizers, entree, dessert, and watched the fireworks. It was a great evening that I would not have wanted to speed through.

    However, if you do need to speed up a meal, I have a few suggestions:

    - Send the kids and one grown-up to the buffet as soon as you have your table. Leave the other adult to give the server the drink orders for the whole group. This gets the kids eating sooner.

    - At fixed-priced meals, ask for the check at the beginning of your meal. This works particularly well at the Crystal Palace. If there are no meal add-ons your server can compute your bill as soon as you walk in. This eliminates a wait for the check at the end.

    - At character meals, be willing to miss one of the characters. Or, you could speak with one of the character handlers (usually wearing a yellow vest and a headset) about your situation and they may be able to send a lagging character over to your table if that's what's delaying you.

    Good luck and have a great trip!
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Meet the Panelist: Erin, New York

I have three teenage daughters. We're DVC members obsessed with Disney travel. We've been to Walt Disney World countless times and have visited Disneyland & Disneyland Paris. We've taken several Adventures by Disney and Disney Cruise trips. Learn More About Erin

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