Tipping at Restaurants at Walt Disney World

GUYS. Truth time. Sometimes, I don’t feel inspired to write. I write for a living, and have for several years now, and sometimes, I stare at my computer blankly, before switching it off, and grabbing some coffee. Today is different though. TODAY I FEEL INSPIRED. What inspired me, you might ask? Well, I saw a facebook thread the other day, when mindless scrolling past political posts to try to find cute puppies. What was this facebook thread, you might ask? It was people, talking PROUDLY about how they don’t tip at Disney World. Now, I know that Mickey is rolling his eyes behind peoples backs at this, and that Cinderella is yelling ‘have courage and BE KIND’ at the top of her lungs, but I thought I would chime in with a few thoughts.

For years, before I was able to run the blog as a business full time, I waited tables and bartended. When David and I were first married, he was a full time student, and we both waited tables together. We made $2 an hour, which exclusively went to taxes, so our paycheck was always zero. We lived on tips. Quite literally. If we didn’t get tipped, we didn’t eat.

I understand that America is unique, in the fact that it’s a tipping culture, while other countries are not. I always understand that Walt Disney World is an EXTREMELY expensive vacation destination that many people only get to visit once in their lifetime. I also understand that sometimes, service is bad – things happen right? But is service ever so bad that you hope a cast member can’t put food on their table?

We tip 20%, everytime, no matter what. I fully understand that that isn’t feasible for a lot of people, in which case, we highly encourage tipping at least 15%. If this isn’t possible financially, then Disney has INCREDIBLE Quick Service Restaurants, where you won’t need to tip.

At the end of the day, tipping needs to be added into your trip budget. Cast Members are among the friendliest, hardest working people I’ve ever met. They work minimum wage jobs joyfully, because they believe in what Walt believed in, and truly WANT to make your vacation magical. In return, if we can afford to go to Disney World – we can afford to tip them.