I was at Disney this past week; Animal Kingdom on Monday and Magic Kingdom on Wednesday. It was crazy crowded as I expected it to be on Spring Break. But, I utilized all of the tools now available to plan a day including Fastpass, Dining Reservations and, for the first time, mobile app food ordering for Quick Service restaurants. Having done all that I was pleasantly surprised how much we were able to do at both parks.
The Mobile App food ordering was phenomenal. I don't now how long that has been available but there didn't seem to be too many people utilizing it, which may not give a true indication of what it will be like. We walked out of the Nemo show at AK and placed our order. By the time we walked to Pizzafari it was ready. We avoided a good 30 minute line with that move alone.
Posted wait times for the big attractions were insane. I head that the line for the Avatar ride (name escapes me) was 240 minutes at one time of the day. Who in their right mind would wait four hours for ANY ride? My son was excited to see that Seven Dwarves was "only" 110 minutes. We skipped it.
But, even with those crowds we had a really good time at both parks and with the great deal of the Florida Resident ticket pricing it was a no brainer.
I can't believe you went during the spring break blackout. Our passes are blocked for the two weeks, but I wouldn't go if I could.
App food ordering has been around for awhile, but it's been a gradual rollout. And yeah, I don't know why you'd get in line. There are still some locations I wish they would add it to, but it's getting there.
I don't care if I had my own private Disney tour guide ensuring I would have no wait whatsoever for any and every ride, show, and dining establishment possible...I don't think I could deal with Spring Break crowds.
Disney doesn't hate poor people. They hate agoraphobes.
In seriousness, I still don't understand why Disney allows this level of crowding. I mean there is an easy and obvious way to increase visit quality and get more gate (increase prices), so what do they know that we don't? Or do they think that 240 min. or even 110 min. waits are not broken?Last edited by ApolloAndy, Friday, March 30, 2018 3:15 PM
Hobbes: "What's the point of attaching a number to everything you do?"
Calvin: "If your numbers go up, it means you're having more fun."
Or do they think that 240 min. or even 110 min. waits are not broken?
I think the problem is that the 240 minutes worth of people there don't think so.
And if it ain't broke, don't fix it.
Yeah, if people are going to get in those lines...seeing those posted times...then so be it. It gets people out of other lines I suppose. As my kids get older I have more limited times available to go to the parks so Spring Break was sort of chosen for me. I sure do miss the times I could take the kids any day of the week at any time of the year (pre-school age I guess).
On the upside, I'm only a couple of years away from being able to leave the kids home alone so I'm closing in on more frequent trips sans kids when I can enjoy the parks more as an adult.
Back to app food ordering, if you are familiar with Cosmic Rays you will recall that there are 3 "Bays" you can order from. They have devoted an entire bay (the center one) to mobile food pickup. At Pizzafari it was just a "lane" against a wall where we were directed to pick up the food. I assume this will roll out over time like Fastpass did where restaurants will be built with mobile food ordering in mind.
Completely off topic but we had a nice experience at Tony's Town Square restaurant. The wait was longer than expected, even with the reservation, but the service was terrific. Each of the four of us ordered something different and I was trying the food off my wife's plate and the kids' plates. A manager saw that and asked me if I had a problem with my own meal. I told him I didn't and I was just grazing. Before I know it he brings out a Chicken Parm meal for me to try and tells me it is "on the Mouse". I thanked him and he asked if I needed anything else. I jokingly told him I had not yet tried the red wine. A couple of minutes later he is back at the table with a sampling of their red wine.
I share this because even if I had a miserable day in the parks due to the crowd that moment at lunch would be something I would remember forever. The "cost" to Disney was minimal, if anything at all, but the value of that pays off. So much so, in fact, that I'm sharing it with others. I actually emailed Disney this morning to share the story and commend the cast members involved but more companies could do stuff like this...and should. Now, I dropped over $125 on that meal but it was one of the highlights of the week.
wahoo skipper said:
But, I utilized all of the tools now available to plan a day including Fastpass, Dining Reservations and, for the first time, mobile app food ordering for Quick Service restaurants. Having done all that I was pleasantly surprised how much we were able to do at both parks.
One of the biggest miss-conceptions is that if you wait until the last minute, your FP+ and dining options are extremely limited. I've found just the opposite. Other than the true "A-list" options, I've had a ton of luck playing around with times and options and getting some decent FP+ selections and dining reservations, even on day of.
One trick that I have found some success with is "toggling" between different adjacent times every few seconds searching for availability. It might take a few minutes but I have found that in many cases, something that you want eventually populates in the selections.Last edited by Hanging n' Banging, Friday, March 30, 2018 5:11 PM
On our trip last August, we managed to get last minute dinner and lunch reservations at Be Our Guest just by playing around in the app. It probably helped that we had a party of 2, but it was a nice surprise.
They only recently added the ability to pay for your online order on the app by using dining plan credits. I would assume that will result in some increased use. It was available at a few places on our visit, but we didn't use it.
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