Heads Up – Disney Dining Experience
As of January 1st, an automatic 18% gratuity will be added to checks when guests use their Disney Dining Experience card *.
In the past, tipping was left up to the guest’s discretion. Now that the policy has changed, I wanted to give all of you who use this card a friendly “heads up.” I have used my DDE card four times since the beginning of the year. On every occasion, the server has NOT informed me that the gratuity has been added. Instead, I’m presented with three pieces of paper. The original, itemized bill. A second, itemized receipt that also displays the discount and the tip. And a final draft that ONLY has the total and a place to add a tip and sign my name.
When I’m presented with the final bill, the first two pieces of paper have been neatly placed (sometimes folded up) on one side of the server’s folder. The receipt that requires my signature is placed on the other side of the folder and is eagerly pointed out to me. Of course, the TIP section of the bill has been left blank so that I can add an additional amount if I wish. However, since the server doesn’t tell you that the gratuity has already been added, I believe that many guests will mistakenly tip an additional 15%-20%, not realizing that they have already been charged for this service. I realize that the automatic gratuity is printed on the second receipt, but I feel its being hidden from me when I’m presented with my bill. And unless you read you’re receipt carefully, it’s easy to overlook.
I’m not saying that anyone is trying to get away with anything. But I feel the servers should be upfront and inform the guest that the tip has already been added.
* Disney Dining Experience is a dining discount program for eligible Florida Residents and Annual Passholders 21 and older and is good for 20 percent off food and beverage at a number of Walt Disney World Resort hotel and theme park restaurants and lounges. The discount is good for up to 10 persons in your party.
ADDITIONAL COMMENT FROM DEB WILLS: To reinforce what Jack has stated, I just returned from a weekend at WDW and used my Disney Dining Experience card many times. Only one server talked to me about the new policy and explained that the tip was automatically added.