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90 Days Until Disney World's Free Dining Begins, But The Fun Started Today!

Disney World’s Free Dining Promotion starts on August 16th, but the real fun started today. Today is exactly 90 days before August 16th. This is the first day that people who are checking in on August 16th are allowed to call in and make their Dining reservations.

With all of the excitement leading up to today, you would think that it should be a holiday.

This is how the day went:

  • Around 6:00 am EST people are starting to post on the DISBOARDS – Restaurant page about their strategies for the morning.
  • It is rumored that the On-Line Dining Reservation System that Disney World is launching may go live to the public today. People are excited that they may be able to make their reservations this way instead of the phone system.
  • Around 7:00 am EST, the mass dialing begins and people start calling 407-WDW-DINE to make their Dining Reservations for their trips that start Aug. 16th.
  • Mass postings start appearing on the DISBOARDS. This one was my favorite: http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=2179522
  • The tales of long waits, bad hold music, and phone disconnections start.
  • Around 7:45 am you start seeing people posting their successes, while others continue to post their wait times and the current hold music selections.
  • Disney System outages are being intermittently reported.
  • Around 11:00 am the above post thread has over 200 comments and 4000 views.
  • Despite the sad tales of long waits and Disney Reservation system problems, most people eventually ended up reporting that they were successful in booking the restaurants that they wanted.

Personally, the day was similar for my household. This is going to be our first Free Dining visit. Our family had our first and second choice restaurants picked out. My wife had the day off, so she was able to start calling in just before 7:00 am. After being on hold for 45 minutes (with the worst quality of audio of hold music ever – sounded like it was recorded off of an old 45 record), she got through to a live cast member.

We were successfully able to get all of our reservations made:
August 16th: Chefs de France 7:10 pm
August 17th: Le Cellier 8:05 pm
August 18th: Tony’s Town Square 6:30 pm
August: 19th: Coral Reef 7:10 pm
August 20th: ‘Ohana 8:50 pm
August 21st: Le Cellier 4:55 pm

All of these restaurants are amongst our favorites. We have had wonderful meals at each of them and they all are on the list of restaurants to maximize the value of the Disney Dining Plan.

Keys to Remember:

  • Know your 90 day date before check-in.
  • Prepare a list of restaurants that you would like to eat at. Have a couple second choices ready, just in case.
  • Call 407-WDW-DINE just before 7:00 am EST to make your reservations. Be persistent to make sure you get through.
  • After you get your reservations, write them down and take them on your trip with you. You will not get confirmation in the mail.
  • Now you can relax, knowing that you don’t have to worry about not getting in to a restaurant on your vacation.

One last tip: Check out the DISBOARDS at http://www.disboards.com/ to learn the latest happenings at Disney World on the most popular Disney Discussion board.

Although the On-Line Disney Dining Reservation system did not go live to the general public today, it will do so soon. Only WDWorld will report on it, as soon as it becomes available. Although it will make the Dining reservation process go much smoother, it will take some of the fun and excitement out of days like today.

2 comments to "90 Days Until Disney World's Free Dining Begins, But The Fun Started Today!"

  1. Anonymous says:

    Do you know if the free dining plan includes the new Quick Service plan?

  2. This is extremely fantastic journal i prefer it.
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