Mom And Daughter; Animal Kingdom
  • On Dec 29, 2010
    Mary from MD 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.

    Going to WDW for 1st time in Jan. Staying at The Carribean resort and have the dining plan but not park hopper passes. Do we have to use park admission to eat in hotel restaurants like Chef Mickey or CageKona? Any good advice for 1st timers-kids 8 & 6.

    Hi Mary,

    How exciting!!!  First trips to Walt Disney World are magical indeed!  Be sure to let the cast member at check-in know that your family is celebrating your first trip to Walt Disney World.  I'm sure you'll receive an extra-warm welcome.

    I think you'll find the Disney Dining Plan is a great deal, especially when you only pay the children's rate for your 8- and 6-year-olds.  I have found it much more effective to feed children using the Disney Dining Plan than paying out-of-pocket while on vacation. 

    Since restaurants like Chef Mickey and Cafe Kona are not in any of the Disney theme parks, you do not need to use a park pass to gain entrance to the resort where they are found.  (Chef Mickey is in the Contemporary Resort and Cafe Kona is found at the Polynesian.)  Glad to see that you are including character meals, like those available at Chef Mickey, in your plans.  These meals offer great food and wonderful photo opportunities with the characters.

    My best advice for first-time visitors to Walt Disney World is to sit all members of your travel party down before the trip and ask what each person most hopes to see or do.  Walt Disney World is an enormous, magical place and there is simply too much for any family to do on one trip.  Guests who try to do it all could easily become tired or frustrated.  Don't let that happen!  Make a list of the attractions each of you most wants to see and then plan accordingly.  Also, as Disney resort guests, your family is entitled to enjoy the parks before and after regular park hours during a period Disney calls Extra Magic Hours.  This is a great time to explore the parks with lower than normal crowds.  Take advantage of Extra Magic Hours as much as possible.

    Don't hesitate to ask more questions of the Moms Panel as your trip approaches.  We'd be happy to help.

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Meet the Panelist: Jill, New Jersey

Lesson plans, college plans, vacation a teacher, college counselor, and incurable Disney fan I find myself constantly planning.  I love to share advice with friends who have yet to experience all that Walt Disney World has to offer! Learn More About Jill

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