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My family is heading to Disney World soon. We originally booked this trip for last summer, but the parks were still closed due to Covid. But now, with 4 out of 5 members of my family vaccinated, we are excited to hit the Orlando theme parks.
Last night, I sat down with my kids and warned them about some of the Covid changes we would experience at the parks. Things like:
- No fast passes
- No fireworks shows
- No traditional parades
- Wearing masks on queues and rides
But for me, the biggest difference we have to prepare for is that we are not going to experience any character meals.
Character Meals at Disney World
I love character meals at the parks. It’s always good to sit down and rest in the air conditioning. Having the characters visit our table for photos is very convenient, too. It means we spend less park time waiting in character lines and more park time on the rides.
Due to the pandemic, character meals are different. There are fewer options, and the characters no longer stop at each table. They roam around the restaurant and stop for distanced photo ops.
Our favorite character breakfast at ‘Ohana is not offered right now. We’ve done this experience on every Disney trip! My kids love the unlimited POG juice and the antics of Stitch.
But the real reason we’re not doing any character meals on this trip isn’t because of the new protocols. It’s simply because I can’t get any reservations at the character meal restaurants!
That’s right, there are no reservations available, and it’s not because I haven’t been trying in every possible way. I tried to book at 60 days out. I signed up for notifications. Plus, I keep checking every day. Nada. Even when I try to reduce my family of 5 to just 2, I still can’t find anything. Due to reduced restaurant capacity and reduced number of character restaurant choices, the reservations are very hard to get.
Out of all the changes we will experience on this trip, this one has been the toughest for me to swallow. But surprisingly, my kids aren’t that phased by it. Now that they are 10, 13 and 16, the character meals just aren’t as big of a deal to them. They are all about the rides. Which is a good thing, considering all the current pandemic changes.
I plan to keep trying to snag a character meal reservation. Some folks cancel at the last minute. But, I am preparing myself to come up empty handed.
Are you crazy about the character meals at Disney World? What will you miss the most at Disney World with these current pandemic changes?
Nancy lives near Dallas, Texas, with her husband and three kids. Her favorite vacations include the beach, cruising and everything Disney.