What If There’s a Problem With Your Food?
Important note here! Mistakes happen and as much as we would like to hope and think that a mistake shouldn't happen or won't happen, it might. It's always important to double-check your food as you're taking it or when it comes to your table at a table service or you are walking away from a quick service.
Sometimes sauces are added that aren't safe for you if you have an allergy even if you requested something plain. Or it could be that your kiddo won't eat ANYTHING that touched a piece of lettuce. Maybe someone grabbed the wrong tray and gave it to you. Lots of people place regular orders and allergy orders and the burger without mayo looks a lot like the burger with mayo, especially if they are sitting together.
Don't be shy about mentioning something. Disney cast members go above and beyond to take care of you but if a mistake does happen the goal is to make sure it is caught before you eat it, or before it's too late to fix the problem.
I think we've all been there, an item missing from your order, or the wrong side given. And far too often it's noticed when we've walked away, gotten home, etc. Disney is no different! If you stand and watch those kitchens, they are practically assembly line because they are working hard to fill orders, especially during peak meal hours.
The problem comes when you don’t mention that there was a problem with your order or that you didn’t feel comfortable with your server or chef. It’s rare, but it happens. The time to handle that is right then. Ask for the manager. Don’t sit there scared to eat, pay your bill, and leave. It’s much harder to fix a problem once you are no longer at the restraint or with the same staff.
If there’s a problem, ask for the manager. Explain what happened. It’s possible they will ask you how they can fix the situation. Be honest. If you’ve lost confidence that your meal can be made correctly, say so. If you’d like the manager to oversee the meal being made, say so. If you don’t think it’s fair you be charged for a meal you didn’t eat and have no intention of asking to be remade, let them know. They will do their best to make sure you have a good resolution. But it’s so much easier to have a positive outcome when you are there in person, not trying to explain the situation in an email or phone call the next day.
By that same note, what if someone goes above and beyond? It happens! It's time for a cast compliment!
The following is an abridged and unedited page from my upcoming book, Vacationing With Food Allergies at Disney. Though you might not have food allergies, there's still some very helpful planning information, because who doesn't get hurt at times on vacation?
Finding First Aid
Disney is well equipped to handle emergencies. Each of the theme parks also has a first aid station. What you’ll find there, is they are able to handle anything from rashes or chemical burns (like from a sunscreen your kid’s face didn’t like!) to headaches, those lovely pollen allergies Florida always seems to have, and just about any of the minor things you might need, including scrapes, sprains, and other injuries. Just don’t expect a Mickey bandaid! Sorry kids, they are plain flesh toned.
All first aid stations are staff by a nurse, be it a Nurse Practitioner, Physician Assistant or Licensed Practical Nurse, or some combination of the three, all working for the local hospital system. They are very helpful and caring. More than once we’ve been offered a quiet place to rest or even lie down if needed. And for various little things, we’ve been given a dose for now, a dose for later, or multiple little packets of cream.
Obviously, just because there IS a first aid station fully stocked does not mean you should leave your epipens at home. And, it’s likely you travel with a few meds too. If there’s something you need non urgently, your resort gift shop will likely sell it. We also tend to travel with quite a few first aid essentials, just because. Let’s be honest…it’s always something!
First Aid Essentials
Here’s what I usually put in my mini first aid kit.
I make a small sandwich sized Ziploc bag with a portable kit. A few advil, some bandaids, etc, just to throw in my park bag. I’ve used it more than once.
Last year it was drizzling and our shoes were a bit wet as we stood in line at Space Ranger Spin. There was a child swinging on the bars, maybe ten or so. She was almost my size, so when she slipped off the bars and fell right into me, her body filled with momentum, it literally knocked me over. Thankfully, I didn’t fall on my kids. However, I got a deep gash on my ankle from her shoe, watched as she started swinging into the opposite direction, completely unaware, and cleaned and covered my ankle before we got on the ride.
That mini kit really comes in handy for headaches from the heat, minor skinned knees, or the other little things that you don’t want to be bothered to get out of line for.
For the budget side, I like being able to reach for my own inexpensive products, instead of paying a few dollars for a dose of medicine at the giftshop, or a big bundle for a tube of anti itch cream.
What do you pack in your mini first aid kit?
Ordering with food allergies right now at Disney is a little different. While all food carts are supposed to have an ipad or a green binder with the ingredients, often we discovered it was NOT available, and we had to look for another stand.
Menus are more limited. Wile that's great, less desserts to drool over and wakl away from, it was harder for meal choices.
Ordering at quick service varied. At the parks, there was always someone helpful, and the red trays were still used to signify an allergy order. At our resort, Pop Century, it was a mess. Instead of the wonderful chefs we had been given in the past, we had the rude one from Art of Animation. He barked at me, didn't really want to help answer questions, and shrugged me off, not wanting to answer questions. Thankfully, the next time I ordered, I had a friendlier chef, though he didn't inspire as much confidence in me as much as Joquan had last year. I pray he returns.
The food court was chaotic, so if you place an allergy order, please be sure that it is flagged down, and you are watching to make sure that no one takes your order by mistake.
We did not do table service this time. I have heard that some people are being charged to speak to a chef, but others are not.
At Disney Springs, we ate at Wolfgang Puck Express, and as always, felt safe and confident in the meal choice and the staff in looking after our youngest. The meals were delicious there, and it was nice to have a good variety.
If you are mourning the loss of the Halloween Party, we have a small DIY for you. No, it's not quite as fun as enjoying the real thing, but if you have kiddos or someone else who is heartbroken about not attending, this might be just the ticket!
Right now, Target has these awesome small treat bags in their dollar spot. There's a cute pumpkin, an awesome teal allergy friendly bag and some others. I only bought these two. They are only $1 and will go fast, which is why I'm sharing this now!
Buy a few bags, fill them with your favorite treats, and either keep for yourself, or boo your neighbors and coworkers! These are the perfect size to hold small toys or plush as well with sturdy little handles!
I want to see what you've put in yours!
You guys know how much we love making Disney recipes, or copycatting them! Our Tie Dye Cheesecake from Pop Century was a hit, and so were the Banana Split Cupcakes! We've had a few flops along the way, but I'm always up for a Disney recipe! Especially since often, it's the only way my youngest can have a safe Disney dessert with his food allergies.
Like so many of you I'm sure, the last few months have been filled with baking. Father's Day weekend we decided to make Mr. Disney Magic a batch of cookies from his dream Disney Resort. We've never been there, that's a one day maybe kinda price for us, but we can still enjoy the cookies, right?
These were the most unusual cookies I've ever made. They didn't call for granulated sugar. Weird, right? We whipped up a batch of these to see how they compare to our usual recipe. The house was divided...my youngest and I said eh, but Mr. Disney Magic and my oldest loved them.
Want to try for yourself? I prefer a big, chewy cookie myself.
The dough mixed up easily, it was very airy. That's what made me nervous. It was a beautiful, soft dough.
I scooped it onto trays with my usual tablespoon cookie scoop. I wasn't sure how much these would spread, so I didn't crowd the pan, and did 9, instead of my usual 12, because the Disney picture they looked thin and huge.
They didn't take long to cook, but you can see...the cookies did not spread at all! I know I didn't have too much flour, because I very carefully measured.
Next batch, I pressed the cookies down, flattening slightly. It made no difference. The taste was there, but these cookies were more airy, light in your mouth, instead of a dense, chewey cookie.
Overall, these weren't bad. Would I gift them? Probably not. I do plan to try these again, substituting half of the powdered sugar for granulated, and see if that helps with the spread, and the chewiness.