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WDW Trip Planning Guide Reader Feedback

by Brian Bennett



Brent asks: I live in south Florida and been to Walt Disney World for countless trips. This year was my first as an annual pass holder and I found it to be very beneficial. I was unaware about the extra hotel discounts and such that came with the AP. We are planning a trip during Thanksgiving week and I have a question for you and (or) your readers. What restaurants on property serve a Thanksgiving dinner? I don't care if it's in a park or a resort.


Originally, I responded...


The best advice I can give is to call (407) WDW-DINE and ask which restaurants will have special meals on Thanksgiving. I bounced your message around the MousePlanet crew, too, and that was the best suggestion any of us had.

But I didn't like the answer I gave Brent, so I asked a CM that I know at WDW, and she provided the following information:

Thanksgiving - Thursday, November 22, 2001

  • A credit card guarantee is required
  • 48 hour cancellation policy
  • $10 per person fee if canceling within 48 hours
  • The following locations will have special menu offerings for Thanksgiving:


  • Akershus
  • Alfredo's
  • Biergarten
  • Coral Reef
  • Garden Grill
  • Le Cellier
  • Rose & Crown Pub & Dining Room

Magic Kingdom Park

  • TBD

Disney-MGM Studios

  • Hollywood Brown Derby
  • Hollywood & Vine Cafeteria of the Stars
  • Mama Melrose's
  • 50's Prime Time Cafe
  • Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater

Disney's Animal Kingdom

  • TBD

Walt Disney World Resorts

  • Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge
    • Boma
  • Disney's Caribbean Beach Resort
    • Captain's Tavern
  • Disney's Contemporary Resort
    • California Grill
    • Chef Mickey's
    • Concourse Steakhouse
  • Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa
    • 1900 Park Fare
  • Disney's Old Key West Resort
    • Olivia's
  • Disney's Polynesian Resort
    • Kona Cafe
    • 'Ohana
  • Disney's Port Orleans Resort
    • Boatwright's Dining Hall
  • Disney's Wilderness Lodge and the Villas at Wilderness Lodge
    • Artist Point
  • Disney's Yacht and Beach Club Resorts
    • Cape May Cafe
    • Convention Center
    • Yacht Club Galley
    • Yachtsman Steakhouse

More details will be released as the information becomes available.  Complete menus, hours, and pricing will be available approximately 30 days prior at Holiday Dining (intranet) site, or call WDW-DINE for details. Please keep in mind all information is subject to change.



Janice writes: Was wondering if the Port Orleans has iron, ironing board and hairdryers available in a standard room. Thanks a this site!!



I wasn't able to find out the answer for sure. I'd suggest you call the resort at (407) 934-5000 and ask them.



Jen asks: This is a great great site -- I feel lucky to have found a link!!

This is what I'm looking for information-wise, perhaps you can use it to add some updates. 

I'm looking for a general best tips for young children. Best Resort / Hotel, best places to eat, when its best to just pack PB&J, best transportation considering impatient young children. I'd like information about which airlines offer the best service / routes (i.e., who flies direct from certain regions.) And finally, tips for the parents. Is it okay to use the club programs? How should you work it with rides -- what could mom do w/ the 3 yr old while dad is on a ride with the older one? These are probably painfully obvious to those who are experienced, but we've never been to WDW before, we'd like some advice.

Thanks for the great site!



MousePlanet's WDW Trip Planning Guide does have a bunch of stuff on visiting WDW with kids. Click here, and you'll find much of what you're looking for.

However, you did raise some issues that I haven't addressed there. Specifically, the issues about direct air flights, etc. I would suggest, though, that you check with a travel agent on that. Delta is currently WDW's official airline, and it offers direct flights from many Eastern US cities, but there are other airlines that do the same. Because of the dynamic nature of flight schedules, though, a travel agent would be best able to provide you with that information for the dates you want to travel.



Pam writes: I am planning a trip in May 2002. We already have a resort by virtue of my parents timeshare but there are a couple of things that I have questions about. Does WDW have electronic wheelchairs to rent and how much are they?  Do you know of any place that discounted tickets can be purchased? The price that I keep seeing is $200 for the 4 day park hopper pass. I also would like to know if you know about children. The WDW website says child 3-9, so are children under 3 free?



WDW does have electric vehicles available for rent. The price is $6.00 for a regular wheel chair (with a $1.00 deposit that is refunded when you return the chair) and $30.00 for an electric scooter (with a $10.00 deposit.)

They are available at all of the major parks, but the number of scooters is limited, so you'll want to make sure you get one when you first enter the park. Later in the day, they may all be rented out!

Beth Floro, who has authored a couple of trip reports on MousePlanet, has a wheelchair/ECV frequently asked questions list at Deb Will's WDW Information Guide website.

You may want to check it out, as Beth has a wealth of information to share there.

You can click here to read all I know about discounts on admission media.  The $200 price you're seeing for a four-day park hopper is just about right. I just paid a little less than that with my Disney Club membership, but it was only down by a few dollars.

Children under the age of three years old are, indeed, given free admission to the parks.



Belinda asks: We were in Magic Kingdom and had our daughters pictures taken with Mickey in Toontown claim number is 878588 at Magic Kingdom exposition hall, we never got a chance to pick these up and was wondering if we can still purchase please let me know. Thanks.



My first thought when I read your email was no. The photo folks generally do not keep photos available for a long period of time. In fact, I'm quite certain that the photos available at the attractions (Splash Mountain, for example) are available only for a few hours.

As I continued thinking, though, I don't see any reason why you shouldn't ask the question of someone that really may know...

I'd suggest you call guest relations (just call (407) 824-2222 and ask for guest relations and they'll hook you up), and ask them to track it down for you.

I suppose it's possible...



Beth writes: Hi, Brian! I am SO glad that I discovered your website - it has been crucial in helping us plan our upcoming September trip. I am staying with a friend at the Caribbean Beach Resort (CBR) and we were thinking of bringing a case of beer in with us, but then we thought maybe that wasn't allowed. Do you know if it is acceptable for guests to bring alcohol purchased outside the park into the rooms with them? Should I call the hotel and ask? What do you think?

Thanks for all of the great Disney information you work so hard to make available to us!



It's perfectly ok for you to bring any groceries into your room.

On the side, you may way to contact the resort (now, in fact) about renting a refrigerator if you want to keep your brew cold.



Kelly asks: Sorry to bother you but I have a two questions that I did not find the answers to.  First, historically, what hours are the parks open during the month of May?  Second, if we were to buy a package such as Discovery Magic for the convenience, could the unlimited park hopper pass be upgraded to an annual pass or premium annual pass?

Thank You for your time and reply when you get a moment.



The hours of operation in the parks varies depending on crowd levels. In May, that generally means average crowds, so typical park hours would be for the MK to be open from 9:00am to 6:00pm, Epcot from 9:00am to 9:00pm, the Studios from 9:00am to 7:00pm, and Animal Kingdom from 8:00am to 6:00pm.

Of course, if the 100 Years of Magic celebration really brings in crowds, those hours likely would be extended.

The Unlimited Park Hopper pass can be upgraded at it's current value to an AP or PAP. That is, if you upgrade at the beginning of your trip, you'll get the full value of the Unlimited Park Hopper in the upgrade. If you wait until the last day of your trip, you'll get zero value (as the cash value of the Unlimited Park Hopper will be down to nothing). The catch, though, is that as part of a package deal, Disney may decide that the value of your Unlimited Park Hopper is less than it would be if you were buying your admission media ala carte. You really need to check with guest services at the resort or one of the parks before you use any of the time on your Unlimited Park Hopper to get a real assessment as to the value you'll get towards the upgrade.

Also, be aware that the AP or PAP will be dated from the first use of you Unlimited Park Hopper... not from the date of the upgrade!



Lorraine asks: I have a request from my 4 year granddaughter that lives in Cohoes, New York. Her and her parents can not come down to Florida at this time, but her request is that I have Mickey Mouse send her a post card, just to say hello, she just loves Mickey Mouse and thinks he lives next door to me. This little girl has been thru a lot in the last 2 years, she has a blood problem, but now with the medicine she takes it is under control, so I would like to know how or who do i get in touch with to have this post card sent to her from Mickey Mouse.

From a very grateful Grandma, Thank you.



Two things come to mind for me...

1. You could contact guest relations at one of the parks (just call (407) 824-2222 and ask for guest relations and they'll hook you up) and ask them to help you with the card.

2. You could drive over from Tarpon Springs yourself (it's about a two hour drive, right?) and drop a card into the Main Street mailbox. :)

I won't personally be going to WDW until late this month, so I'm afraid I can't help you out myself...



Catherine wrote to MousePlanet's Adrienne Krock (who writes MousePlanet's, "Parenting in the Parks") and asked: I caught your review of the story-telling activities that appear to be done with some of the characters. You mentioned Belle, Cinderella and Snow White, but from what I could tell the locations were all those of Disneyland. Do you know of the locations, if there are any, in (Walt) Disney World that host these wonderful opportunities for my little ones as well? We leave in less then two weeks....and counting!


Adrienne responded:

Hi, Catherine,

I don't know if there are any storytellings at WDW like the ones we have at Disneyland. I'm copying Brian Bennett who knows far more about WDW than I do. Brian, do you have a better answer for Catherine than I do?

and my two cents worth...

Catherine (and Adrienne),

The only story telling location that I know of is at Storybook Grove in the Magic Kingdom. The Grove is located to the far right of the Castle.

Belle tells her own story, with lots of help from folks in the audience.

Times vary, but it usually is done several times each day (11am, Noon, 1pm, 2pm, 3:45pm, and 4:45pm were the scheduled times last Spring).



Barry writes: As a Christian (Lutheran) and someone who enjoys Disney theme parks, I'd like to thank you for posting your article on MousePlanet (about the Disney boycotts). It was well written and thought out and provides a solid witness. I've often wondered if the Baptist leaders who came up with this boycott are also boycotting every other movie and theme park company, since while Disney has fallen short of the mark, its still more wholesome then just about anything else out in the secular field.


Thanks for the kind words, Barry.

I think the key, in any case, is for each of us to search the scriptures ourselves and come to a conclusion that we're comfortable with. The answer that I've come to for me and my family might not be the right answer for someone else. Also, as I stated in the piece, if Disney's decline gets to the point that visiting Disneyland or WDW actually causes me to do wrong, then I'll have to stop going there too.

Fortunately, I don't see that happening... at least for now.



Scott asks: Hello, I am trying to find out how long the rehab is going to take at mannequins at Pleasure Island. One person told me the club will be closed till October 6, and another october18. Could you please get to the bottom of this?



My sources tell me that both dates are correct. :)

Officially, the club isn't supposed to open until the 18th. However, I've gotten word that a special event has been scheduled for a few days prior to that, so the earlier date of the 6th may, indeed, be correct.

If you're planning a trip, I'd suggest you assume that Mannequins won't be open until the 18th so you'll be safe... then, perhaps you can check after the 6th and hopefully be pleasantly surprised!

Well, I hope you enjoyed the reader feedback for the WDW Trip Planning Guide!  Feed free to send more questions or comments to!

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Brian's Archive - Contents

I've always gotten email about the WDW Trip Planning Guide, but since we added the feedback form to the site several months ago, the number of questions has increased dramatically!  I do my best to answer each and every question personally, but I've noticed that a lot of the questions are asked again and again.  The question that one person asks might very well be the question that someone else is wondering about.  Thus this page!

So...I'll post reader email and feedback every once in a while, because the question someone else asks might be the same one you're thinking about yourself!


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