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My question is when planning a trip to Disney.... is your 1st meal a favorite or do you try something new? Does it depend on what you are doing in each park?
I used to plan parks first but now the meals are more important. For my 1st meal of the trip I usually pick something that I love or new depending on my mood. Last trip my son & I tried a new place, Boathouse.
Next trip I want to go to an old favorite- Turf Club. At this point the last meal may be Trail's End.
So the question to you, how do you plan your meals?
Thanks for Participating.....
Kate in PA All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them- Walt Disney
I usually start with choosing the parks I will be attending and then choose meals after that. Usually, the first day is our travel day, so I always try to book a meal that is a "safe" meal. I'm never sure how my tummy will feel after traveling, so that's my major consideration.
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I stopped doing an ADR on our arrival day. It was just too stressful so last time we chose a chain TS restaurant that was out on 192 that we have here at home. We had a really good meal and really good service just like we do at Disney except there wasn't a Disney price tag attached to it. We could also go when we wanted to without needing to call ahead.
As for the rest of the meals, since we like to do the character meals, they pretty much stay the same from trip to trip and stay the same meal now (breakfast) so it's all a matter of picking the days for the parks - which those pretty much stay the same too now. If it ain't broke, why fix it? Our plans seem to work the way I have them so I keep them that way
I've always planned the parks first and then picked ts restaurants. However, I think that's changing for my next trip in part due to Disney not releasing park hours far enough out for Josh to do his crowd/recommended parks calendar. But also because even if I do no other ts meals I always go to Rainforest Cafe and Yak & Yeti which are Landrys restaurants and I've found that with being a member of their preferred club I don't need an adr to get a table even at Yak & Yeti as long as I'm there close to when they open. So I'm thinking that this next I'll just plan the adr's and since I make most if not all of my adr's for lunch if the park feels too crowded I only have to be there through lunch and can then hop somewhere else whether to another park, DS or my resort.
For us it largely depends on which park we are for a given day. There are certain places that we like to go in or near a park. For example, in the past we've gone to SciFi Drive in for lunch at HS and LTT for dinner at MK. Having said that, we're looking to changes things up and try some new places in Feb.
We tend to try new places that look good/get good reviews at Epcot because there are so many choices.
I have family members with food allergies so we pretty much have all meals TS. We make a schedule and plan our ADRs around that. Sometimes depending on availability we have to adjust it. We have favorites we do every trip and then a few we alternate between. Usually we try one new place. For arrival day it depends. Usually we try to get a first or second flight of a day so will play lunch by ear but will make an ADR for dinner in either the park we will be in or at Disney Springs.
I definitely plan Disney around eating! Disney TS food is awesome and is a very important part of our vacation. We always do some character buffets and our TS always include everyone's favorites and a sprinkling if new restaurants. I start way before our ADR day and everyone gives me a list of their top 3 restaurant picks for breakfast, lunch, & dinner. Then I balance those with our park days/balancing early days and late night days along with some rest & relaxation time. This chart system has worked well for us for the last 4 trips and many times I ask for more as our favorites are similar. We all determine 1 nee restaurant to try. This year we tried 5 new restaurants and 2 that had not made the cut in a long time. We usually do 2 meals/day and then snack as we need to.
As far as how we determine our first and last meals...that is much easier. The first meal is usually in or near our resort as we would have been traveling for quite some time and will be starving. The last meal is always a favorite meal...usually 'Ohana for dinner but depends on our flight time. I hate rushing thru a meal. I just say I love our system as we all get a say in what restaurants we eat at. Everyone always gets their 1st choice and sometimes more depending on how many days we are staying.
Now we only usually do 2-3 TS meals a trip. We always have at least 1 character breakfast and I try to do someplace new each time. Last trip we had free dining sobad more TS meals than normal. Next trip I have Spirit of Aloha and Narcossee's both requested by DD. We're only there for 5 nights and arrival night we get in late.