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Opening Magic Kingdom

Opening Magic Kingdom

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

AAA Member Benefits for Walt Disney World Dependant on Dining Plan Being Included


We learned this week the AAA member benefits for Walt Disney World vary by what is included in the package, such as dining plans.

Here’s what happened . . .

When our Disney documents arrived last week (click here to read more), I looked through them and discovered that we did not have a voucher for Wishes reserved viewing, which is a AAA member benefit, even though we had a reservation and a confirmation number.  Our AAA Story Time (click here to read more) voucher was also missing, but we weren’t planning on that particular activity.

I phoned our travel agent and discovered that those particular vouchers are only included with packages where a Disney Dining Plan is also included.  Ah, didn’t know that!  This was the first time in 11 trips that we hadn’t included a dining plan. 

The mystery question still remains as to how we were able to get a reservation for Wishes reserved viewing and a confirmation number if we didn’t meet the criteria at the time.  Note, that when we booked our vacation I inquired about AAA member benefits and after hearing that reserved viewing for Wishes was one of them, asked for it to be reserved at the same time that our dining reservations were made and it was no problem.  We have before, waited until the vouchers arrived with our documents and attempted to obtain a reservation only to discover that it was either full or not available during our vacation.  Call and plan ahead is the lesson here.

This became a dilemma and a somewhat ethical one I might add.  Would we use our confirmation number to obtain admittance without the voucher and feign ignorance?  Would we watch Wishes from another location?  Would we add a dining plan to our reservation?  Which one would you do?

After much thought, deliberation, and calculation, we have now added the Basic Dining Plan to our package and reservation.  The Basic Dining Plan gives us 1 table service credit, 1 counter service credit, and 1 snack credit per person per night of your stay that can be used in any order.  It also includes 1 refillable mug per person.  (The husband said, “Oh great, we’ll have to squeeze 3 more mugs into our cupboard.”)

The math worked out—and possibly to our advantage after I checked menu prices for the time of our stay.  And, now I don’t have to worry about the food budget. 

While we have credits for 11 table service meals, we actually have dining reservations for 15 meals.  One is the Spirit of Aloha dinner and that is paid in full already including gratuity.  Two reservations are for T-Rex Café at Downtown Disney and Rainforest Café at Disney’s Animal Kingdom.  We will be using Landry gift cards earned through Swagbucks (click here to read more) to pay for these meals, along with a $25 voucher from Landry Select Club.  That leaves one meal in which we will need to pay for out of pocket beyond the Disney Dining Plan and I think our dinner at The Plaza or our dinner at Rose & Crown will be our out of pocket meal.  

Our counter service meal credits will be used for some breakfasts, lunches, and at least one dinner (arrival day).  And, we will have 33 snack credits to be used between all of us.  Can you say funnel cake or turkey leg?

After we made the decision about adding the Dining Plan, I told the husband that we just can’t go to Disney without it.  We tried to give it up and it didn’t work.  He corrected me in saying that it was me who couldn’t give it up, not we.  He was just an enabler.

Hopefully, the plans are all set.  The voucher for Wishes reserved viewing is on its way to us via mail.  And, we are looking forward to dining at ‘Ohana’s for both breakfast and dinner, Akershus with the Disney princesses, Nine Dragons in the China Pavilion at EPCOT, Crystal Palace with Winnie the Pooh and Friends, Tusker House with Donald and the gang at Disney’s Animal Kingdom, Chef Mickey’s at the Contemporary Resort, Teppan Edo at the Japan Pavilion in EPCOT, Mama Melrose at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, The Plaza in the Magic Kingdom, and Rose & Crown at EPCOT’s United Kingdom Pavilion. 


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