Apr 242006

Seeing characters is an exciting part of any Disney vacation. One of the most effective (and yummy!) ways to see characters is a character meal. There are all sorts of offerings at Walt Disney World, from breakfast to dinner. So, is a character meal worth the time and expense? The answer to that question really lies with the interests of you and your group. Will your princess fanatic love dressing up and eating in the castle? Will your first trip to the “Mouse” be enhanced by having the Big Cheese himself visit with you at breakfast? Are you collecting autographs of popular characters, but don’t want to wait in line to see them? If the answer to these or any similar questions is “yes,” then a character meal may be right for you.

But how to choose? Well, the meal may take a couple of hours out of your day, so it is best to pick a meal based on the characters you really want to see. And make sure it fits into your plans. Have breakfast with Donald at Animal Kingdom when you are planning to be in the area. Have dinner with the princesses in Norway after a nice day at Epcot.

All of the character meals are served as either buffet, family style or pre-plated offerings. There are no ala carte menus at these meals. The characters then make their way around the room to each table. They spend a brief period of time for photos, autographs and hugs, then move on. So your little one will sometimes have to make that terrible wait, watching Cinderella hug all the other little princesses before she gets to your table. But the good news is that she will get to you. We have even waited after finishing a meal just for that last autograph.

The servers try to tell you when you are seated where the characters are. So don’t go running to the buffet if Pooh is only a table away. If there are any question about the order or when the best time to make a dash for more pancakes, just ask your server. They can help you with the path the characters are taking.

There is a list of character meals on TheMouseForLess website, perfect for planning that next special meal. And don’t forget the cameras and autograph books. This will be the only character opportunity where they come to you!

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