5 secret Disney World tips – PREP025

(Info last updated: October 3, 2015)

Today, I have 5 secret Disney World tips that you might not know.

After hearing each one, you'll have to decide if they make sense for you.

I also have a quick tip of the day regarding what time of day you can make FastPass+ reservations.

These are notes from this episode. There's much more info included in the audio so be sure to listen to the episode for a better explanation.

Link to recent posts

Guide to Disney World discounts - http://wdwprepschool.com/guide-to-disney-world-discounts/

5 secret tips

Many of these fall into a grey area where some people may decide that they are ethical and others will decide that they aren't. Disney allows all of these things so decide for yourself if they make sense for you.

1. Quick Service credits aren't divided between adults and kids
Although Table Service credits are split between kids and adults, Quick Service credits aren't. That means that you can order adult meals at Quick Service restaurants for your children.

2. Rainforest Cafe at Animal Kingdom has its own entrance
There's a gift shop inside Rainforest Cafe that has its own entrance into Animal Kingdom. If the main gates seem busy, you can check out the Rainforest Cafe entrance to see if it's less crowded.

(Updated 2/3/2015: this is no longer available)
3. You can get a FastPass+ reservation at Be Our Guest even if you aren't invited
Disney has a FastPass+ to eat lunch at Be Our Guest but they will tell you that it's by invitation only. The fact is that it's available to anybody.

You can get the reservation by visiting https://beourguestlunch.disney.go.com/. You will need your 12-digit numeric confirmation number (not the alphanumeric confirmation number) which can be found in your My Disney Experience account before MagicBands ship, on Magical Express luggage tags and in some emails that Disney sends.

These open up about a month beforehand so reservations for March will open up in mid-February.

4. Off-site guests can make on-site reservations to take advantage of some perks
People staying off-site often want to take advantage of on-site benefits such as Extra Magic Hours or being able to make FastPass+ reservations 60 days in advance. One way to do that is with a reservation for a campsite at Ft. Wilderness. The reservation works for up to 9 people.

People who stay at Ft. Wilderness are not a fan of these "phantom bookings" but other people will argue that when you pay for the spot, it's up to you how you use it.

5. Valet for $25/day at any Deluxe Resort (Updated 10/3/2015 - valet prices changed)
All Disney World Deluxe Resorts have valet parking available for $25/day. The non-valet parking has a limit of about 3 hours. This is especially convenient if you have a breakfast reservation at a resort and want to keep your car there as opposed to re-parking in another parking lot.

As long as you have your valet tag or receipt, you can valet anywhere on-site all day without paying any extra (though you should tip at each location).

Note: in the podcast, I said that on-site guests get free parking for up to 3 hours. I should have clarified that I meant when parking at other resorts. On-site guests using the general parking at the theme parks can park there all day.

Quick tip of the day

When making FastPass+ reservations 60 days in advance, you can begin at midnight eastern time (Updated May 19, 2016: it's now 7 a.m. eastern time). This is different than dining reservations which begin at 6 a.m. eastern time 180 days in advance.

Subscribe to get new episodes

There are a few ways to get new episodes of WDW Prep To Go.

Photo credit

*************************

Questions or other tips to share?

Please feel free to share them in the comments.

ENJOY THIS ARTICLE? SIGN UP TO GET UPDATES (IT'S FREE).

Leave a Reply

Sort by:   newest | oldest | most voted
Jodi Ashby

Is tip #4 still valid and would it work if you only book 1-day at the campgrounds but have a 4-day ticket linked in My Disney Experience? We’re going the first week of May—not an overly crowded time to go. The only Fastpasses I’m concerned that we might not be able to get is Anna & Elsa.

ellen

Question: trip next week to WDW. Booked Disney’s Port Orleans Resort off of Hotels.com. Is this why my confirmation number can’t be found on the Disney app?

Sarah Blackfin

I went to WDW last fall but am finally going through and listening to all the podcasts! I LOVE them! I’m currently planning my DLR trip for this fall and my type A personality is struggling with how little there is to plan in comparison to WDW! Thanks for these podcasts, they’re giving me a fix and helping me look forward to planning WDW for 2016 (:

Mike

Secret tips are great. Lessons in dishonesty not so much. #1 is unquestionably dishonest and though not all that serious in the scheme of things teaches children a bad lesson. Even if a tiny fraction of visitors each year take advantage of this flaw in Disney’s system it could still easily account for the equivalent of an entire Disney employee salary or more. Why not grab a pin off the pin cart when nobody is looking while you’re at it.

Jodi Ashby

#1 is not a big deal at all. If it was a big deal, a big company like Disney would make changes to stop and prevent this. They allow it. Nooooo biggie.

As noted, it’s allowed by Disney so not to worry; Cinderella won’t be robbed of her paycheck. Thanks for the pin tip though! Free pins for everyone!

Staci

Thanks for all the great info! We are 30 days out from our trip and the be our guest trick has not worked. I am wildly hoping that it is just because today is a Sunday and perhaps some spots will open tomorrow.

I’ll keep trying. My kids really want to dine at BOG.

Shannon- would love more posts on the Candlelight Processional, New Year’s in MK and the Epcot Flower Show…..

Elizabeth

Sorry, I tried to post this as a reply to the article, and it looked like it ended up as a response to a thread, so I’m trying again.

Hello,
This post was really helpful, thank you!
I noticed that several people have posted questions about Tip # 1 (getting adult meals instead of kids’ meals with quick-service credits), and as far as I can tell, they have not been answered here. Maybe they have been answered more personally via email, but in either case I am still wondering how this works.
Shannon (or anyone who knows),
Have you verified that Tip#1 is still true?? The official website, clearly states (as you indicated that it would) that a kids’ meal must be ordered if available. However, I read on another wdwprepschool post that “These [quick-service] credits aren’t separated into child or adult categories so you can theoretically get adult meals for your child.” I would really like to take advantage of this tip for my 8-year-old, but I am worried that, since all the meals are combined and can be used by anyone in the group, that I might use up all the adult credits at the beginning and then at the end of the trip be surprised that only kids’meals are left on the account.
Thanks for all your research and work on this. So many people must be able to have a much smoother, less-stressful and more efficient trip because of your posts.

April

My ten year old ordered adult meals without any trouble. She is a head taller than most kids her age though and that makes her look more like 13.

Natasha

Questions: so for tip #3 – where do I get that code/ confirmation number?
“can be found in your My Disney Experience account” – I don;t see it on the application I have or on the site.
“Magical Express luggage tags” – we are staying off Disney and will not have those tags.
“some emails that Disney sends” – never received any
Are there any other ways to get that number?
For tip #4: suppose I stay on site for one day and off site the rest of the days, and have 5 day Disney ticket that I purchased on Undercover tourist. Do I still get the wrist bands? Will I be able to take advantage of the magic hours only on the day I’m staying on site or for the whole 5 days?

Natasha

thank you, I’m all clear on #3 now
another question:
For tip #4: suppose I stay on site for one day and off site the rest of the days, and have 5 day Disney ticket that I purchased on Undercover tourist. Do I still get the wrist bands? Will I be able to take advantage of the magic hours only on the day I’m staying on site or for the whole 5 days?

Craig

Yes Natasha, you will be able to get 5 days of magic hours. You will need to get the wrist band, when you booked your room.

That is incorrect Craig. While you’ll have Magic Bands (and the system will likely allow you to make FastPass+ reservations for the full length of your ticket), and you won’t automatically be gently reminded to leave by Cast Members if you’re shopping in a store or eating in a restaurant, your MB will be scanned if you attempt to ride any FP-enabled attraction during Extra Magic Hours. Your My Disney Experience information will indicate that you are no longer a resort guest, and you will be informed that you are not eligible for Extra Magic Hours.

Mike

If you’re only staying on-site for 1 day why would you be entitled to the extra hours for 5?

Katie Batting

Ugh! I wish I’d known about this post a month ago. I just checked the Be Our Guest Fast Passes and they’re all gone for our trip next week. Regardless, awesome info! Thank you!

Stephanie

Are the lunch fast passes at Be Our Guest their quick service meals or is it a sit down credit?

Christine

It is a QS credit!

Iman

Hi Shannon,

I logged in way to early but was able to do so with my memory maker number and it only showed October 24-Oct 28 with no times available, but I’m concerned because our trip is until the 31st and I am looking for the fast pass on our last day. We are now 37 days out (woohoo!) and it still doesn’t show me the full dates of our trip. Have you heard of anyone else having this problem? Do you recommend I call Disney?

Michelle

The quick service dining credit use is in no way a “gray area”. When you book the plan it specifically states that you must order kids meals when available for children ages 3-9. They are available at almost every place, the one or two places they are not on the menu then you may order them an adult meal. Any other use constitutes fraud.

Bethany

Hi Shannon!

Thanks for your Be Our Guest fast pass tip. I was able to book the FP, but I forgot to print the reservation as it was suggested. I can’t seem to “log in” again to get to that page – it just says that I already have a reservation. Do you have any idea how to get back there to print?

Love your blog! It’s been SOOO helpful for our first visit in t-12 days!

Bethany

Destanie

Hey just listened this podcast.. I know its old but maybe you could answer my question.. if we do the dining plan and we have children who will be four and three….could we just use two of our quick service meals during breakfasts and lunch to make them last longer since we don’t eat that much food?

Suzann

I’m interested in #1, as well. Our information/confirmation lists specifically that we have 14 kids meals and 56 adult meals. This sounds to me like there is a differentiation between the meals and if we order adult meals for our kid, we will end up with only kids meals at the end of the week. Is this a loop hole that Disney has discovered and closed? Our trip is 6/14. Thanks for clearing it up :0)

LeeSandra

I am 35 days away from my trip and have been looking at all the Disney Blogs since I want to make sure everything is near perfect for my family and I’m not very experienced at planning Disney Vacation (and also to help with all the excitement I have leading up to the trip lol).
I have been clicking random posts on your blog and found this post and am now so STOKED! We were able to get a Fastpass for BOG Lunch with no problem. THANK YOU SO MUCH!

wpDiscuz
Animal Kingdom Epcot Hollywood Studios Magic Kingdom
The pros and cons of all Animal Kingdom restaurants
Rivers of Light viewing advice
Pros and cons of every Hollywood Studios restaurant
Planning Process Overview Step 1: Pick a Date Step 2: Lodging Step 3: Make a daily plan Step 4: Dining Step 5: Park Touring Step 6: Extra Magic
The best Disney World tickets for 2017
Guide to all character meals at Disney World
How to tour Disney World resorts (even if you’re not staying there)
Babies and toddlers Characters General Reference Group travel Luxury Saving Money Special needs Technology Transportation
The best Disney World tickets for 2017
WDW Prep Infographic Download Center
Time-saving shortcut paths at Disney World