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Discussion in 'WDW Trip Planning' started by jcm, Mar 12, 2017.
New to the forums. Looking for information or tips on getting FD for our upcoming Dec. WDW trip!
Looks like you posted this on a different part of the site is better suited. In the future, there is a WDW Trip Planning section that might be great for you, as this forum is used more for park news and rumors.
Thank you! New member still learning to navigate through the different forums
To answer your question though what I recommend is to look at past historical offering dates. (Exact days often change) and if your vacation lands within one of these historically accurate dates you might get it. IIRC your start date must be in the alloted dates but your end can go outside of them.
In any case you will need to call and have it added if you qualify.
Here's a link to historical information from past years of when they offered FD and when it came out.
Just to piggyback -- keep in mind, OP, that if a free dining offer comes out that doesn't quite match up with your plans (e.g., arrival date range starts a day or two after you're getting there, offer doesn't match your room category, etc.), as long as you're still within your "free cancellation" window, you can go ahead and re-book the trip in such a way that it meets the free dining eligibility requirements, and cancel your already-booked trip. (Another option would be to call WDW and modify your existing reservation to meet the eligibility requirements, but as I have learned from experience, you could be on hold for hours while the free dining slots get gobbled up by people booking online. Best to book free dining whenever and however you can, and if you find that it's all booked up by the time you realize it's been released, check again every day afterwards -- often WDW will release additional rooms for the offer 2 weeks after the original offer comes out, give or take a few days.)
Case in point: the 2016 free dining offer came out for those checking in 11/15 and after, and if you were staying at CBR, you needed to be staying in a preferred room to be eligible. We'd already booked our flights and were arriving 11/14 to stay in a standard room at CBR. So, I booked an entirely new set of reservations (a room-and-ticket package at CBR in a preferred room, beginning 11/15, for the free dining offer, plus a one-night room-only reservation at CBR in a preferred room on 11/14, so we wouldn't have to switch rooms from 11/14-11/15). Then I canceled our original reservation. The downside was that we had to pay more for our room, and had to go through the charade of checking out and checking back in on our second day, and our free dining didn't extend to the first day of our stay, BUT even with all that, we STILL saved at least $400 off of what we'd otherwise have spent on our hotel+tix+food (plus we had a room in a preferred location, which was nice), so even though our dining wasn't remotely "free," it was well worth it to futz with our plans in order to make them meet the constraints of the free dining offer.
Great link! Thanks!
One other note it helps if you are flexible with your hotel choice, last year we could not get the free dining for The Wilderness Lodge for our entire stay for some reason but were able to get Animal Kingdom Lodge with no problem.
Thanks! That's a great tip!!
Can anyone verify what "free dining" actually means? Is it 2 QS or 1 QS & 1 Sit Down??? Thanks!
Free dining at a value resort is the quick service dining plan (2 QS plus snacks)
Free dining at moderate and deluxe resorts is the regular dining plan (1 QS, 1 TS, plus snacks)
You can pay to upgrade to regular dining plan if staying at a value resort.
Note that you will have to pay rack rate for the room and purchase at least a 2 or 3 day hopper ticket. And everyone in the same room must have the same package.
It has to be a hopper ticket??? No problem with everyone having the same package... And how do the Cabins rank?
In the past yes, either hopper or water parks and more.
Cabins are considered moderate resorts.
Do you have an AP?
No, but I have had one in the past... And I have been thinking about getting it again... If the price is right and I get a good discount for my late August trip, then I just may purchase one. What would be different if I had one? I have a Disney Visa and I have researched the discounts historically....
I ask because if one person in the room has an AP and the others do not, the AP holder still needs to purchase the same MYW ticket to qualify for free dining. You don't have to use the ticket on that trip; I applied my MYW ticket to my AP renewal. But since new MYW tickets now have an expiration date (two years from purchase, I think?) you may want to keep that in mind.
You could upgrade to an AP upon arrival and apply the MYW ticket towards that.
That is a VERY good idea... I know we'll be back again next year, so it would only make sense.... Thanks for that!!! I appreciate the tip!
Glad to help!
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