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10 year-old ordering off the child’s menu at Disney restaurants

by Christopher

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“There is no way my 10 year old can order off the adult menu. He just does not eat enough. Will Disney question his age if I order off the kids’ menu? He will be 10 but he’s not big for his age. I’m buying him the adult ticket to get him in the parks, but don’t want to waste money on the adult meal at some of these restaurants. Do you think I can get away with it?”

A big pile of food

Sometimes it’s too much food for even adults – Photo by Brett Svenson

Hey, Christopher. The quick answer is yes, you can do it. It’s not really a problem. Not really. There are some exceptions to that, but for the most part, yes, your 10-year old son can order off of the kids’ menu. Even adults at the quick service restaurants can order off the child’s menu, so that’s not really a problem. It can be done. Not a problem at all.

Dad’s Disney World Restaurants page

Sometimes at the table service restaurants there could be a little problem, but a 10-year-old that is not big for his age, it’s not really going to be that much of a problem. Disney does know that they’re on an adult ticket if you use your MagicBands. If you pay cash, Disney’s not even going to know, but there’s a lot of information now on the MagicBands that will tell them that.

Even if you don’t use his MagicBand, your whole family’s information is on every MagicBand so they would technically know that he is 10 years old, but they’re not going to question it. He can order off the child’s menu. The worst thing that could happen is he might have to pay the adult price. If you’re going to somewhere like a buffet he will have to pay the adult price, but for the most part, yes, he can order off the child’s menu.

The problem does come in if you’re using the Disney Dining Plan. The Disney Dining Plan, if he is 10 years old he will be on the adult plan. If he’s got an adult ticket he’s going to be on the adult plan, so he will be charged the adult credit. He cannot use a child’s credit. You can still order off of the child’s menu, but you’re going to get charged the adult credit.

Dad’s Disney Dining Plan page

Destinations to Travel

Dad’s Bottom Line

So, the bottom line is, yes, your 10 year old son will be able to order off the child’s menu, but if you’re using the Dining Plan he will have to have the adult level of the Dining Plan and use those adult credits. Hope that helps, Christopher.


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Comments for

Aug 17, 2019 Why wouldn’t it work at buffets?
by: Lainey

I have a 9 year old but I bought him an adult ticket/adult dining plan because he eats more than the tiny kids portions at Disney. While he eats more than a little bird, he doesn’t eat like an adult. We are thinking of paying out of pocket for a breakfast buffet (Boma) because I don’t think breakfast is a great use of table service credits.

Do Cast Members still scan your magic band if you are paying out of pocket? His age is 10 on the ticket but he is actually 9. ( I could carry his passport I suppose?) I can’t really justify the cost of an adult buffet for him when he could just get one extra kids helping on the kids buffet. Any ideas/ thoughts? Thanks 😊

Dad Answers

Paying for the buffets is kind of on the honors system. The server won’t ask you the age of your child. Since he’s actually 9, you can truthfully say (when you pay out of pocket) that he’s a child.

As to using or not using the Disney Dining Plan, you just tell the server that you are not using the dining plan and they will not take credits off your plan even if you pay with MagicBands.

Jul 18, 2018 Paradox
by: Patches

I do find it a bit of a paradox we have to pay adult at age 10, but Disney doesn’t consider them an adult to be in the parks or ride companions until age 14. We wanted to do another trip but the thought of paying “adult for a kid that will be 10 a month before going is crazy, it just makes me want to wait 4 or 5 more years till she can just have some freedom and meet us at certain times in the park.

Oct 11, 2017 Another Option
by: Catherine

Another option is to pay OOP at Table Service Restaurants (this won’t work at buffets) ONLY for the child and let them order what they want. The credits are assigned to the reservation, not the individual person. You can use the extra credits toward meals that are signature dining. For example, if you pay OOP for 3 table service meals for your child (party of 3, Mom, Dad, 10 YO)then you have 3 extra credits that can be used towards dining at Cinderella Castle or California Grill. If your child wants mac and cheese or a burger or chicken fingers you are saving the credits for a better benefit.

Oct 06, 2017 1st Time NOT Using Dining Plan
by: Lorraine

Thanks, Dad. This is the reason I will NOT be using the Dining Plan on my next trip. My daughter turned 10 during our last trip, so we got away with one last child ticket/meal plan. Next year, she will be 12. She is tall and simply will not pass for 10, but sometimes she eats like a bird and is content with Macaroni and Cheese or a Burger. Other times, she has a big appetite and will order grilled salmon off the adult menu. I plan to just budget our meals and pay for them with my Disney Chase Visa or Disney gift cards.

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