Something new is coming to all the Disney hotels here in the Walt Disney World Resort in the next few weeks:

A new refillable mug program — Rapid Fill — will roll out at resort locations with self-service beverage stations at Walt Disney World Resort hotels. The introduction of these new mugs will take place in a phased approach beginning in July with Disney’s All Star Resorts, where the program originally piloted in 2011. The new Rapid Fill mugs have a radio frequency identification (RFID) chip installed in the mug that allows it to be programmed for multiple days (with the option of adding additional days) all the way through Guests’ entire length of stay (even more than 14 days, but they have to be CONSECUTIVE). Mugs will allow Guests to refill beverages at any resort self-service beverage station. Guests also will be able to check their remaining days available on the fountain beverage dispenser’s LCD communication display. Rapid Fill mugs may be purchased and used at any resort self-service beverage island. Disney Dining Plan Guests will receive this mug as part of their package.


Here you are just some of the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) you may have about the "Rapid Fill" mugs:

- What's the difference between the current Resort Refillable mugs and the Rapid Fill mugs?
The Rapid Fill mugs offer Guests flexibility by allowing them to choose one, two, or three days of refills or for their entire length of stay. The RFID (radio frequency identification) chip installed in the mug alerts Guests as to how many days they have remaining on their mug. The program was tested in 2011 at Disney’s All Star Resorts and is similar to the technology currently used in mugs sold at Disney water parks. 

- Can non-Walt Disney World Resort Guests purchase and use the mug? 
Yes. Anyone can purchase and use the Rapid Fill mugs at any resort self-service beverage station.

- Can the Rapid Fill mugs be used in multiple resort hotels? 
Yes. The Rapid Fill mugs may be enjoyed at any resort hotel self-service beverage station. 

- Can I bring the same Rapid Fill mug each time I visit the Walt Disney World Resort?
No, past mugs cannot be activated for future visits. Guests who purchase the Length of Stay option for Rapid Fill program can use the mug for fourteen (14) consecutive days after activation. Guests can extend the mug beyond the 14-day Length of Stay option as long as it’s still within the current length of stay. 

- If the mug is activated for first use at 5 p.m., will the one day count until 5 p.m. the next day?
No, the day will end at 11:59 p.m. that night. Each day is a calendar day (12:01 a.m. – 11:59 p.m.), not a 24-hour period. Whenever the mug is used for the first time, regardless of  time of day, the mug will expire for that day at midnight. 

- Can the current water park mug be used in resorts? 
No. The current water park mug is only valid in water parks, with no resort add-on option. However, Guests soon  will be able to add a water park option for their mug.

- Can Guests purchase a Resort Rapid Fill mug anywhere at Walt Disney World Resort? 
Resort Rapid Fill mugs may only be purchased at Walt Disney World Resort hotels with self-service beverage  stations.

- If a Guest prefers not to purchase the Rapid Fill mug, can they purchase a regular mug instead?
The Rapid Fill mugs will be the only refillable mugs available at this time. Guests may choose to purchase 
nonrefillable paper cups for their drinks if they prefer.

- Can mugs be microwaved?
No, the mug cannot be microwaved.

- What is the price of the Rapid Fill mug?
The prices of the mugs vary based on Guest preference for number of days for refills, as follows:
  • $8.99 for 1 day
  • $11.99 for 2 days
  • $14.99 for 3 days
  • $17.99 for length of stay (4+ days)
So, what do you think? Are you looking forward to use these new mugs, or... not? Tell us what you think.

206 Comment(s):

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Erik said...

How do the non refillable paper cups work at the RFID fill stations? Do they have a RFID chip inside for one refill?

Erik

I think this is bull crap! Just another way for Disney to make an extra buck! Don't get me wrong, we like the refillable mugs and usually purchase on our trips. But I think this is not very customer friendly.

Jeff said...

So Barbara, how is this bull crap?

Resort mugs have always been available, and right now they are 15.49. This takes it one step further and allows you to customize the mug, and tailor it to a shorter stay, for a reduced cost.

Guests on the Disney Dining Plan will continue to get this as a component, so no loss there.

This is a huge win in my mind since you can now use these mugs "legally" at other resort fountain locations.

Waterparks will also be added, where you can add on that option too.

So what's the drawback? The fact that you can no longer continue to use your mugs from a decade ago?

To be clear, the rules while not enforced, have always been clear. This mug is valid at THIS resort for the length of THIS stay. The only thing changing is that dishonest guests will no longer be using an old mug.

To answer your question Erik, paper cups will be valid for 4, 20 Oz. pours in one hour, with the hour timer beginning with your first fill up.

Anonymous said...

The original test only allowed a certain amount of refills in a given time (one every 10 minutes, I believe). Will this be the case with the roll-out?

Anonymous said...

Jeff = Mug Police. Bravo buddy, pat yourself on the back and then get a life.

Anonymous said...

So, does this include coffee, iced tea and water refills too?

Anonymous said...

This implementation of technology is Disney screaming to its guests, "We don't trust you!".

Personally, I think this is a solution in search of a problem. When I'm staying on Disney property and not in a Club Level Room, (where the drinks are free) I buy the mug. I'd never consider bringing last year's mug back with me. I imagine most Disney guests are like me.

I will acknowledge that some guests will reuse last year's mug, but Disney's use of technology here makes me think about stopping at Costco, Wal-Mart, Target, Publix for soda on my way into Orlando. $18 buys more cans than I can drink in a week, and becasue Disney implements technology that screams that they don't trust me, I'd rather give my $18 to someone else.

Anonymous said...

I certainly think it is bull crap. There are lifetime mugs out there that you can "legally" refill at that resort for as long as the cup lasts. The cups have been losing value since the price went past 12.99. For those who spend most of their time in the parks, $17+ is a steep price to pay. There is no reason to then have to add more $$ for water parks. While you're at the water park you might fill up 4 times. Once for a meal and maybe a couple times during the day. This is definitely a way for Disney to continue to squeeze every last penny possible. I know they are there to make money. But their continued blood sucking ways are pricing out normal families. I believe it is time for this family to begin exploring the rest of the 49 states and see what exciting vacations can be had someplace else.

Jeff said...

Looks like the 3rd Anonymous is one of the targets we were looking for. I'm not ashamed to say that I am a part of WDW Finance and were looking for ways to control costs.

While you may not think of this as stealing, or you justify the retail cost elsewhere, to the cost of a mug, it is nonetheless theft. In food courts lately, we've seen an increase in food theft too. When guests are questioned, they shrug it off and just say that they'll be back to pay.

There are thousands of guests each day at each resort, and even the smallest increase of cost adds up. Disney Parks and Resorts is not eating these costs, they are simply passed on to other guests. Controlling these costs does help everyone else by holding costs in place.

Water and ice will still be available and any cup can be used.

And for those of you thinking this is policing, or Disney doesn't trust you, how do you feel when you're walking through a department store? So security tags scream, hey, they don't trust me??? For the honest, it should be no big deal, to the criminal, it makes them have to think of their next move.

Jeff said...

Looks like the 3rd Anonymous is one of the targets we were looking for. I'm not ashamed to say that I am a part of WDW Finance and were looking for ways to control costs.

While you may not think of this as stealing, or you justify the retail cost elsewhere, to the cost of a mug, it is nonetheless theft. In food courts lately, we've seen an increase in food theft too. When guests are questioned, they shrug it off and just say that they'll be back to pay.

There are thousands of guests each day at each resort, and even the smallest increase of cost adds up. Disney Parks and Resorts is not eating these costs, they are simply passed on to other guests. Controlling these costs does help everyone else by holding costs in place.

Water and ice will still be available and any cup can be used.

And for those of you thinking this is policing, or Disney doesn't trust you, how do you feel when you're walking through a department store? So security tags scream, hey, they don't trust me??? For the honest, it should be no big deal, to the criminal, it makes them have to think of their next move.

Anonymous said...

If people can fill a paper non reusable cup what is stopping them from filling an old Mug? Does the paper cup have a chip also?? FWIW i think it's funny people get so heated over this topic.

Mara said...

Of course drink prices are high! I think the current price of a drink at McDonalds or Subway is outrageous; however, I would never consider bringing and filling a cup from a previous visit to save money. It always amazes me when people get mad at a business for actually enforcing their current policy. This is a win for those people who hated seeing others "stealing" soda by using old mugs and a win for those who have gotten grief when filling mugs at a resort other than their own.

Anonymous said...

Jeff is right on my say Sep 2012 trip. I had a hoot watching alot of people with old mugs getting pissed. When the machines refused to fill them. Not as many people are as honest as you think. It's sad .

Anonymous said...

Terry Said
Jeff what about Split stays that are not Linked. Or will the new MM+ take care of that by linking everything together .We normally stay 8-12 days with a split. I also just want to say I have no issue with the pricing and like the across resorts usage now that will be enabled .

Anonymous said...

Wow, this has incited a lot of people! I guess I am pretty ignorant. I assumed Disney changed their mug design every year so this would not be an issue. I guess this can't really be enforced. At Beach Club, you need to prove you are staying there to use the pool. There are physically challenged people you can hire to be part of your group to allow your family to go first on rides in the parks. There are cheaters everywhere. I can understand Disney's concern. This will be the first time I am not paying for the glasses as it now is part of my resort stay. I normally had to buy 4 cups. I like them as souvenirs and I use them with my cheaper grocery purchased drinks. Too expensive- don't buy them. I am pretty sure that it works out a lot cheaper this way.

Anonymous said...

I have seen people stand there and fill up empty soda bottles and anything they can find one after another. It amazes me how many people do this and think it's ok. Next time you go by your local McDonalds demand free food and drinks. Hell just walk in there and take it. I am sure you ate there once before and they must owe you for eating there.

If people can not be honest Disney has to finds ways to stop theft and now you will only get what you paid for.

Kim T said...

That's fine, I actually will pay LESS now, but PLEASE change the design!

Oh, and it might be prudent to implement a program where if you bring the RFID mug back, to offer a reduced cost refill for x amount of days, because the cost of the mug itself has been covered, and it's also a greener option. :)

Anonymous said...

Is there any news on what they will look like? Or have they said it will be the same design?

Anonymous said...

Jeff -

I'm on board with trying to stop the stealing, but (1) why the price increase for 4+ days - upping the price has nothing to do with stopping stealing. If you stop stealing, WDW profits should be increased just from that and you shouldn't have to increase the price as well - unless you just want to gouge the guest, that is. And (2) how about increasing the capacity of the mugs, so the guest can actually get a decent amount of drink for the price. They hold such a small amount right now it's a joke. How about actually giving the guest some sort of value for the increased price????

Anonymous said...

Except that the honest will now be paying an extra $2.50 per mug. That is a pretty big jump for a single increase. And Disney will continue to raise costs by leaps and bounds whether or not they stamp out soda theft. Let's not kid ourselves there.

Anonymous said...

on the "greener" side of things, it would be very eco friendly if the mugs COULD be re-activated for either a discounted or even the same fee, on future visits, especially for AP's, etc.

Janna said...

So do the DDP guests get the mug free but have to pay for the # of days they want to drinks? Or they get the mug and # of days as a part of their DDP, and the only people having to pay for the # of days are the ones who don't have a DDP? This wasn't clear. It just said they get the mug as part of the DDP.

Princess Jasmine said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

ok. what if I'm doing a split stay 6 days @ POP then 3 days @polynesian. I have the DDP for POP, but not POLY. does my length of stay mug include the POLY? or do I have to repurchase a new mug for my last 3 days at a DISNEY resort? can I extend my length of stay on the mug while on DDP?

Anonymous said...

At least it is still the same old boring design, and terribly small size

Anonymous said...

Unfortunately, they don't change the design. At one time each resort had its own design. I wish they would go back to the different designs and change them up. We have quite a few of the same mugs. Also, it will work out to be cheaper for some people. The less time you stay the less expensive they will be. I think its a good idea.

Anonymous said...

This is already being used at Universal. You can only get a refill every 10 min so this stops people from filling up everyone else around them. Paper doesn't work at the dispensers those are filled by people behind the counter. If you're not cheating then you can have plenty to drink all day. They also let you bring your cup back and activate it for another visit therefore reducing waste. I think Disney would be wise to do the same.

Anonymous said...

Are they going to put more filling stations around the resorts? I love staying at Riverside but my biggest complaint is that I have to hike across the resort to refill. I wish they would put them at each pool. It would be worth it.

betsey said...

I have the same question also, do tthey charge you for the mug and the stick you with an additional fee to fill them up? and am I correct in thinking that they limit how many refills you get? If I split my stay will I need to buy another mug? Will the mug b included in the dining plans still? Where can I go to get these questions answered before I book my trip thinking I am getting my mug included but when I get there I get stuck with a fee to fill it up and limited refills at that>

Anonymous said...

It works the dates of stay your DDP is active.

Brent Key said...

What happens when a machine's carbonation is off or the coke fountain pours out clear liquid? Can I dump out the bad stuff and immediately get a fill at another fountain or is there a couple minutes waiting period for my mug before the machine will dispense again?

Anonymous said...

We should be able to bring back the mug and be charged a refill only fee after the first initial trip that it is purchased. The mug should be able to be reprogrammed each time we go and we can pay a refill only fee each time we go (especially if the cup design never changes). It is a much greener alternative.... much like using a refillable cup at Starbucks.

I am anonymous because I am too lazy to figure out how to post in another way... not because I am "hiding something".

Thomas said...

We always seem to get these mugs as part of the DDP, but then end up rarely using them. The problem is twofold: 1) the mug is rather small, so you end up gulping down the drink in the hot Florida sun in a half-hour, and 2) if you're anything like our family, you spend the very early morning and very late at night in your hotel, and all the rest of the time at the park. We end up drinking the soda down to the dregs before we're too far into the park, and then we have to carry those mugs around all the rest of the day.

I think it would be a perfect set up if buffets and quick service restaurants at the parks honored the mug as well. That way, you could get some use out of it.

Anonymous said...

i am posting anonymously because i intend to steal soda i will also steal this blog thanks for listening

Anonymous said...

The average cost of an normal size soda is about 18 cents they are making a killing on this redonkulous

Unknown said...

I think that Disney done a great job with this one. The way i use my resort mug makes it worth my money and now the way i use it is "legal" :)
I rarely refill my mug at my resort. I usually put coffee in it in the morning and head to the park. My first bathroom break, i rinse it out and clip it onto my crossbag. At lunch, instead of throwing of half drink away because i don't like carrying a cold drink without a handle, i pour the rest of it into my mug. At dinner, which is usually at a different resort, i would refill there at their refill station. If it wasn't for me using my mug in this way, I'd only use it one time in the morning for coffee. I think many guests are like me as well. Disney is a business and no one can blame them for protecting their bottom line.

Anonymous said...

We stayed at POR and we could get them refilled at the pool by the cm in the bar for free...

Ceronomus said...

Jeff,
With the sheer volume of soda purchased, as well as the Coke exclusivity contract, Disney's "Cost" for someone having 50-60 sodas is less than the cost of this new cup. Now, obviously, nobody expects Disney to sell something at cost, but as you said "There are thousands of guests each day at each resort, and even the smallest increase of cost adds up."

Prices are SUPPOSED to be created with potential shrinkage in mind. Anyone in business understand this. Anyone in business ALSO understands that finding ways to REDUCE shrinkage is certainly a good thing. That theft of food and drink is on the rise? That is a real problem. Unfortunately, Disney's friendly face makes it a little less willing to nail someone to the wall for a $4 muffin.

That said, this is price gouging. It is the very sort of thing that, despite my being a Disney shareholder who loves the company, has driven my wife and I to stay off property. I can get a nice, clean room, for $30 a night, with a fridge and microwave. We just use the room to shower and sleep after all. There is a free "continental breakfast" to start my day, and the local CVS has soda for $1/bottle. Since we hit the parks 6 times a year, the savings is quite measurable.

When we have stayed on property? The rooms at the All-Star resorts are becoming run down and poorly taken care of. While there are MANY much nicer properties, that is where the value seekers are staying. That makes this a bit of a mixed bag.

If someone is just staying for 1-3 days? You've actually brought the price DOWN. While I'm sure people would rather see the cup size go up, lowering the price isn't a bad thing. However, for families who have scrimped and saved (keeping in mind the average WDW vacation runs pretty steep and is something people save up for years to accomplish), it is pretty insulting to hit the 4 day folks for every last penny you can get for something that used to be a decent value if you were staying for an extended period.

WDWarrior said...

Thanks for sharing the info. It's good to have the details so guests can be more informed.

sa said...

I have heard rumblings of something to this effect would be coming....hence not changing the design for the last few years...you know the artwork design fees and set up charges..... So, now it is revealed. With the prices of bulk soda tanks dispensing soda for pennies- pinching the little guys on the soda does not make sense. The cups are so small and limited to just the resorts only. Yes I purchase every trip, because I don't want to feel like a criminal stealing the soda, and it is the right thing to do. I stay at a Value resort because that is what I can afford vs a Deluxe or other resort. Will the increase make me visit Disney less? No, but it will impact my 'warm fuzzy' feeling about Disney. If this technology will really impact a vast savings, the cost of the cups should go down, that would only make sense don't you think?

Arlene said...

RIGHT?! I do agree guests shouldn't be bringing 2 liter bottles to fill up, but this seems a little extreme considering how much soda costs to supply and the mark up. I don't like the fact that they won't be microwaveable any more since I love taking my old mugs home and reusing them, sometimes requiring microwaving. Well, just another reason people should drink less soda anyway. I will miss the coffee though!

sa said...

on one other note.... there is a theme park that gives FREE soda and suntan lotion with park admission... WHAT A CONCEPT!!!! And yes, they are a award winning destination

martiniglasses said...

Just say no to the cheaters. And say yes to unlimited coffee. If you could only refill your mug with bacon. Now that would be a deal.

If there is an award winning destination with FREE soda and suntan lotion with park admission...then you go right ahead and enjoy it and don't worry about commenting on Disney things.

As for this new Rapid Fill program. What's wrong with it? It helps cater to shorter trips and works for everyone.

If you think it is Disney screaming at their guests that they "don't trust you," well then...I don't blame them. 90% of guests bring back the same mugs over and over again when the rules specifically state to purchase new ones.

So why SHOULD they trust them?

Meg said...

I agree that it would be nice if you could refill them at the parks. Even if not, the ability to re-activate them would be a very smart move on Disney's part. Partly because it's more environmentally friendly (heck, even the local convenience store has refillable mugs!), but also if you're a repeat guest, you're more likely to bring the mugs and purchase the drink plan. We're DVC members and visit twice/year. With 7 people in our family, I'm already swimming in mugs. I'd pay to reactivate the mugs I have, but I'm not likely to buy yet another mug!

Chelsea said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
LR said...

If you're talking about Holiday World, they are hardly on the same level.

Julie said...

I agree with what Jeff said and I don't have a problem with this at all. I am wondering though, what happens for me because like another poster above, I will be there for 10 days in September - at 2 different resorts 5 nights each. I have the dining plan with 1 but not the other. How will that work?

Anonymous said...

Coke gives their product to Disney, so any money that is made on soft drink sales would be profit.

Also, no one ever answered the question about the original mugs (I believe it was during the first 2 years of the program.). They were free refills for life. How will those be refilled now?

Anonymous said...

IN A WAY ITS GOOD IT STOPS PEOPLE FROM USING THE MUGS FROM 2 YEARS AGO BUT THE PRICE IS TOO HIGH

Anonymous said...

Give me a break. How much is this system going to cost now?? All to save 10 cents worth of soda that someone might drink an entire week...

Anonymous said...

forget about the soda - I'm curious as to how this will work with coffee, tea and hot chocolate.

Jeff - any thoughts on these drinks?

Thanks!

Anonymous said...

I personally work with someone who uses her refillable mug from when they were first displayed every time she visits Disney. I have to say this is a smart thing if it truly will keep the costs down and not be passed onto other guests.

Anonymous said...

There are over 50 comments for refillable mugs? Really? Must be the long weekend and everyone is bored!

redcon1 said...

Yep, how many resort guests actually stay three days or less on property? The majority stay longer and will get gouged an extra 2.50. So no, despite what Jeff says, this is pure greediness on Disney's part and not at all guest friendly.

redcon1 said...

Maybe not on the same level, but well worth patronage. A well-run family-owned park with family-friendly pricing and an extremely fun water park in addition to the theme park.

Anonymous said...

How come when Disney raised their prices, there were only one or two comments? Raise a drink mug a couple of bucks and everyone is outraged. Weird.

Anonymous said...

You know the sad part is that Disney DOESN'T PAY FOR THE SODA! They get all the drink mixes from Coca Cola as part of their sponsorship deal. I'm a HUGE Disney fan, even got married there! But lately it seems like they are just ripping people off for money. Not the Disney I love...

Anonymous said...

Maybe instead of finding ways to make money on hotel guest and make them feel like they are getting nickel and dimed, stop allowing people to bbring in huge coolers of food. One of the worst sights is watching people spread out on the lawns eating. Even worse is standing in line behine someone with a huge lunch cooler. I think hotel guests are starting to feel like they are getting charged for every little thing. We always but the mugs each time we visit.

Anonymous said...

I do have to agree on the part where people save for years some times to visit WDW once. I know if you can't afford it don't come is the idea many of you will throw out but we ALL buy and do things we can't really afford. However, you do think that it should be an all inclusive price. You pay high dollar for tickets and rooms so couldn't the cup either be free or not over $5 and you use it while you're there? Yes, I've seen ppl use their cups from years past and I feel if you've paid for them once you shouldn't have to rebuy every year. It is getting so expensive that I feel our families will not get to come many more times over the years and that's sad. I remember my first visit, the only thing there was Magic Kingdom. It's grown and with it so has the prices, just like everything has unfortunately. I feel sorry for those that are a family of four with a set of parents. Between tickets, souvenirs, hotel rooms, they can't afford these hidden costs that keep coming up. Yes, I do feel like one of the others above, the food is totally priced way way out of range and too steep for the average family. Unless you plan on eating in a super nice place, I feel the food should be cheaper so that families aren't forced to share food or try to carry food around for their kids. WDW is supposed to be a happy place but it seems the happy place has many many sad and crying faces on small children as I've seen parents say I'm sorry honey I can't afford anymore. Just my thoughts, not trying to start anything, just wanted to voice my opinions.

Anonymous said...

I think you also are forgetting that the taxes on soda have been going up as a way to promote people from not drinking it.

What about hot beverages? Can we still refill those? & there should be refill stations in the park as we also only use in am & bed time.

Most places in Florida offer unlimited refills and many have to go cups. Yes, just an other way for Disney to make $$$$$$$.

Anonymous said...

LATELY Disney is ripping you off? The drinks fountains are all watered down. The prices you pay there are outrageous! But, you get what you pay for. I go to our local Six Flags. It costs well over $200 to get in and about $100 for food. Try to win prizes and this costs a bundle. And what do you get? Rides that are not functioning, rude employees, run down park, and dirty. There is a reason it is called the Disney RESORT- you pay for what you get. Is it expensive? Of course it is. You want new rides, parades, fireworks, characters, and the basics that I listed above, you are going to pay for it. Disney is a business, and a well run one in that. As long as people are willing to spend the money, you are going to get gorged. Name me a business that wouldn't keep raising their prices if people were not willing to pay it?

Anonymous said...

PMSL! I could tell by your avatar you were that type.....

Anonymous said...

this is easy to remedy, go to Walmart and buy water....

Jeff said...

I'll try to answer as many questions as possible. I was on this project just over a year ago, so some of the details were still in the works.

Green/Re-Using RFID mugs: There was talk of this, currently they waterparks do this, but the resorts will not, initially. However, the savings would only be about 2.00-3.00. I know that for a family of four this adds up, but most people might rather have a new mug.

Size/Design: They are not changing, no idea why, but that was a F&B decision. So it's still a 16 Oz pour, with a same design (minus new logo) but with new colors.

Split Stays: If you are on DDP on both stays, you will receive two mugs. If you are only on DDP for part of your stay, you'll need to buy a mug for the rest of your stay if you'd like to have the free refills. However, if you are on a split stay, and do not have DDP, you may buy the mug, (and with a designed workaround) you'll be able to have the 4+ days refill. Since the mugs will now work from resort to resort, the second resort will just need to verify your Length Of Stay.

As to the question of the increased price, it's tricky. This was ultimately decided by WDW Pricing and Strategy, but, some costs came down, some went up. After 3 days, it becomes a uniform price and you're looking at guests who may be in house for 14-21 days. These costs need to be considered. Most guests staying more than 7 days are not on DDP, meaning that these guests would have a higher usage impact. Remember, guests on DDP will still receive their mug for the length of their stay.

Contrary to popular belief, Disney buys all of their product and machines. The new technology comes at a cost, and to wire all of the fountains so that the cup will work from machine to machine created a greater cost.

Paper cups will have a chip and the plan was 4, 20 oz pours in 60 minutes (use it or lose it) The cups will work at the fountain stations, just like today.
Beverage Stations: More are on the way, mostly at pool bars, but some areas like All Star Resorts will get an additional unit with 10 heads.

Tea/Coffee: I don't have an answer for that, but at some point, even if not initially, they too will be RFID controlled.

Jeff said...

Continued....

Mugs in general and DDP- This is further down the road, and this will likely rile up some more folks, but the DDP will no longer include a drink at QSRs. Now hear me out. Your mug in conjunction with your MagicBand WILL allow you to access soda in the parks. But there is a ot of work that still needs to happen, and more fountain machines added before this can happen. So you can take your mug with you, and use it all day long. Until that happens, there will be no change to the current set up.

And to speak on behalf of WDW Pricing and Strategy, sodas are what we refer to as "lightning rods". you as a guest know about how much you'd expect to pay in a retail environment (7-11, Walgreens etc) and WDW knows that you also know, you're going to pay a premium inside park, an NFL game, Airport etc. There is an "acceptable" range for selling these items. Locally, WDW has kept it's F&B a la carte pricing below the other parks. SeaWorld and Universal both charge in excess of 3.00 for a bottle. If we widen our scope and look at other national chains, Cedar Fair is selling 20 oz bottles for 5.00!!! The cost of soda has always been expensive, but I think we've reached a pretty good compromise. For those guests willing to save some money in exchange for inconvenience, the WDW parks allow coolers of food to be brought in (SeaWorld and Universal do not, but provide picnic areas outside their gates)

I'd also like to talk about labor costs at WDW. While everyone seems to think that our operators make minimum wage, they do not. They are covered under collective bargaining units, receive free healthcare (both full and part time) overtime for any hours over 8 hours in a day, and more. Walt Disney Parks and Resorts have a significant amount of overhead in labor. These 18 cents Cokes are far from it. There is a cost from product/straws/lids/napkins/ice/electric/water etc. So again, while I agree that soda makes a lot of money, it's not the freebie some claim it to be.

Ok, thanks for listening and letting me shed some light on this.

Anonymous said...

I just hope they change the mug designs! I have 15, yes, 15 mugs with the same design as above. We have stayed at Disney 5 times in the last 3 years and have gotten the same cup all but the first time. I look forward to a new design only to be let down the last 3 trips having to get another one of the same...I wish each resort had their own type of mug design so at least I could associate my beverages at home with the memories from that cup's trip. I only drink from a Disney cup at home (trying to hold onto the magic-literally) and it helps tide me over until the next time I am at my happy place. I get the dining plan every time, so I'm not that heart broken about the "system" I'd just like a new design.

Anonymous said...

I was wondering when someone was going to declare shenanigans and mention that Coke gives Disney their product for free. Soda is such a scam, at Disney and everywhere.

Karen said...

Thanks, Jeff. It's great to have the input of someone in "the know".

Aut said...

Jeff- Thank you for your help and insight :) If you could email me I have some thoughts/ideas that may help the parks save money as well
PEOPLE! We knew this was coming. We knew about the testing. Why is everyone spazzing?

Anonymous said...

I Purchased refillable mugs in 1998 and was told they would be good to bring back and use for any Disney resort stay, I quess we were told wrong. Anybody else get any of the lifetime mugs that are no longer any good to bring to WDW.

kim Cherrine-bell said...

Wow what a non third world country problem to have..Having a hissy over a companies policies on drinks..If you don't like it don't do business with Disney..nice to know so many of you have the luxury of being able to afford such things..Some of work two jobs each full time each one (three in the house) and we will never ever be able to afford a vacation period..Amazing the belly aching in this country over such dumb things when for lots of us survival is all we get to care aboutit

Anonymous said...

We are DVC members and visit 5 weeks a year. There are 7 of us. Now, just think of how many of these mugs will be in landfills. There has got to be a more reasonable way to manage this. If you have to have a chip in the cup, make it one that can be reused with future visits.

Anonymous said...

You mentioned about new colors? Any idea what the new colors are going to be?

Anonymous said...

I'm not sold on the safety of RFID systems. I definitely don't like them next to something I ingest. Also, there are also privacy issues. What would stop Disney from tracking the guests for other purposes without their knowledge?

Anonymous said...

We always get new mugs with our dining plan-----and take them home as souvenirs. They're pretty durable, so no need to just trash them when you're finished with your vacation. Many resort guests get the meal plan, anyway (so it's included), so really not that big a deal.

Frankly I'm mystified by how everyone freaks out over a low priced amenity.

Oh and refill your waterparks mug 4 times? Bleech! That's an awful lot of soda.

We just wanted to thank Jeff for answering some of the questions of our Readers. We will continue read all the comments tomorrow, and see if we can answer some of the other general questions (we don't have any insider info, but we will try to help).

Just one warning to our Readers: please, keep the conversation always respectful, thank you!

Anonymous said...

you are wrong!!! most guests are in fact not like you. My wife and I go at least once a year and always buy the mugs when were down there, more for collecting that anything, however we always see people using mugs that we got from years past that are not the current mug being sold. So, I'm not surprised at them doing this, However I am kind of surprised it took them so long to implement a security feature to protect their rules.

Anonymous said...

Yes, my family has some lifetime mugs. We were told they would be good at the same resort as long as the building was still standing.

sa said...

To Doctor Disney and LR,the other poster that said Holiday world was not on the same wave length, NO, it isn't. I was not comparing the two destinations. I stated that it is a perk of Holiday World, which is a MUCH smaller business endeavor. So- my point is, Disney could consider this as a perk to resort guests. I am sure the soda perk is rolled into the price of admission, hence a hidden cost.
Since everything is calculated right down to the last millimeter of an ounce on the bottom line, can it be that much of a push to calculate the number of refills the 'AVERAGE' cup is refilled and determine the cost, just roll it into the room cost and move on.

I do intend to enjoy that other theme park you bet I will. However, I do intend to continue to visit Disney, so Dr Disney- zip it on telling me to enjoy another park. I am entitled to my opinions as much as you are.

Aut said...

"I'm not sold on the safety of RFID systems. I definitely don't like them next to something I ingest."
I am guessing you don't pay attention to all the RFID used at your grocery store????? This is just SOME of the stuff from 2008 that uses RFID..
http://issuu.com/sciam/docs/2008-09_pg76?e=1052646/2661105

Trent said...

Wow! 80+ comments! I don't think I've ever seen the site this hot before. People must really care about their drinks.

Anonymous said...

WDW is a business, like any other business, and they also make money just like the rest. We fool ourselves by believing that they are in it to solely please the customer (which they do well), but they are trying to please the stockholder too. It would be nice to have some good news to go along with the bad, like "Along with the security coded refillable mugs, WDW is changing their machines inside the theme parks so that you can use your mugs there too". Wasn't it Mary Poppins who said a spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down? It's all about marketing and selling a new policy to your loyal customers. Otherwise, the magic slowly fades away.

winterkl said...

As a dvc member that vacations at WDW at least twice a year and sometimes as many as four times a year I would like to see an option for returning guests. I don't mind paying the daily fee for unlimited refills. My concern is all the waist that occurs from each of our trips. I would rather continue using the same cups (and pay the fee per cup) than throwing so many cups away each year because we don't want another set. For example - last year alone, we accumulated 16 mugs and only kept four.

Frankly, I am glad to see that the rules are finally being enforced. I find it appalling that people think it is okay to fill any and every container they can find. I have seen other guests filling multiple gallon containers before...

Anonymous said...

I think it is crap! We spend a fortune at resorts on food and snacks. If we bring mugs back they should be refillable. Just another way to phase regulars out of the Disney all together. I guess Sea World and Universal tickets are looking really good for residents as they phase us out of Disney! RIP Nickey! We shall miss you!

Shannon said...

Since the mugs can now be "legally" refilled at any resort and soon the water parks, the slight price increase seems reasonable. Personally, I'd rather see it go up to $20 LOS and include all parks and restaurants on WDW property. For anyone not on the DDP, it would save a lot of money. Since Jeff mentioned that eventually beverages will be phased out of the CS meal credits, it sounds like this may be a possibility down the road. I am not a big soda drinker though but if I can get some decent brewed ice tea, it would be worth it. I think being able bring back your old mugs and pay to reuse them (or trade them in for a new one and have Disney recycle the old) would be a great idea!

Anonymous said...

@sa,

To begin, I've never been to Holiday World---but it looks, quite frankly, kinda lame and very minor league, particularly in comparison to WDW.

Which brings me to: WDW is THE most visited entertainment complex in the world. They charge what they do (which is, BTW, competitive with our zoo and malls here in Portland, OR, let alone our sad excuses for theme parks and our NBA sports arena) because they can. It's very basic free market economics.

Actually, Holiday World might well NOT turn a profit and might offer these additional amenities as a way to draw in more guests. And trust me, you will, ultimately pay, for any freebie.

I love everyone freaking out over an increase that many (DDP guests) will never even notice. I see lots of infuriated entitlement with the classic, "I spend a fortune/I'm a DVC member/I'm an annual pass holder" wailings---and honestly, if it is now too expensive for you, don't go!

I personally think WDW offers an excellent value for a truly amazing experience, far above any theme park I've ever visited. %2 more for a refillable mug won't change my opinion in any way.

If you disagree, no one's forcing you to go. And I'll enjoy the ever so slightly less lengthy line!

Oh, P.S. someone way up thread claims they're able to stay at an off property hotel for $30 a night. I can't fathom where that is, but I'm sure it wouldn't work for me for a vacation. Additionally, I also factor in not having to rent a car, pay for parking, gas, etc----and the price for staying on WDW property comes waaaay down.

Anonymous said...

So will people on the Ddp still be able to use the mugs until midnight the day of checkout?

Anonymous said...

"Jeff" is either lying about his employment or will be receiving a visit on Monday morning from a grumpy man in a suit.

-- someone *actually* in Finance...

Some people are just ignorant or either the ones that want to "get over" every chance they can. If you are on a 5 day stay you pay less than 4 bucks a day for the drinks with this new plan. Not a drink a day for 4 bucks mind you which is actually low for some entertainment venues but for ALL DAY. Even if you used it once a day at the resort only it basically paid for itself over the 5 day stay on what you would normally pay for a drink and you can use it ALL DAY. Did I forget to mention you are getting 5,8, even 14 days of drinks for 18 bucks ALL DAY everyday of your stay??? Some people amaze me. Is a Disney vacation high of course it is but honestly I grew up going and my kids are growing up going. Some people just type before evening thinking about something.

sa said...

Yes, I will be enjoying this theme park, as well as Disney- I feel I am as entitled to comment on Disney or any other topic that I so choose. Do NOT tell me not to, When I do visit Disney it is for a 10 day stay-on an annual basis. This year it will be for two trips. I don't cheat, I'll make my own decisions as to if I want the mugs or not, don't worry about my choices.

sa said...

First of all- do not diss someplace that you have not been. I never compared the two very different theme parks on a theme park level. I said there were free soft drinks at this particular park, that is ALL I said. I didn't say I disagreed with the price increase either by the way. What I DID say, was with the new chip in the drink cups, the price of the cup should go down because people won't be filling their camel packs with soda. I didn't say Disney was not an awesome vacation destination, my friends think I should be a travel agent selling exclusively Disney travel tours. When I go to Disney, it is for a 10 day stay.

I didn't say I didn't expect to not pay for any freebie, I am sure the cost of these 'free' items was rolled into the admission price. So what- why take issue with my opinions? I believe I am entitled to speak my thoughts- and you are as well. So please don't diss my opinions or thoughts, when did I take issue with anything that anyone else said? Last time I checked this was a free country and everyone was entitled to their own thoughts.

Anonymous said...

My original response: "I'm not sold on the safety of RFID systems. I definitely don't like them next to something I ingest."

Aut's unsolicited response: I am guessing you don't pay attention to all the RFID used at your grocery store????? This is just SOME of the stuff from 2008 that uses RFID..
http://issuu.com/sciam/docs/2008-09_pg76?e=1052646/2661105

My response to AUT: No, I am not an idiot. I don't need you to quote a 5 year old report. Couldn't you find a more recent report? (See I didn't use five question marks or caps. I am very aware. Thank you. My concern is the device being ever present in the mug next to liquid I swallow. By the way, intelligent people don't guess.

In your effort to prove your superiority, you also totally missed my second point. What will prevent Disney from using it for tracking or other clandestine purposes with no warning?

Aut, I can't figure out if you are really that arrogant or just come across that way.

Kelly said...

Thanks for sharing! I have no issues with this at all. But I would like to see them allow us to pay a fee to bring our mugs back and reactivate the RFID. This would be environmentally friendly. Great job Disney!

I wish everyone would be honest so this would not be necessary.

1- We (7-8 people each trip) always get new mugs each trip so I would also like to see new and/or resort specific designs.

2- We love to use our mugs when we are at home. Sometimes that means using them in the microwave. Loosing that option makes me want them even less. (We are the kind of folks who spend very little time at the resort so we don't get much out of the mugs while there.)Can they create a mug that can have the RFID removed so it can be used at home in the microwave? Heck, I have microwaved them while at the resort if the café was closed and I wanted some hot chocolate.

3-I have children. This means someone will always get the wrong thing or change their mind. How does this impact that and the issue with the fountain being out of syrup?

By the by- I like the idea of free sodas being built into the price of the resort. WDW is our first choice for vacation. Holiday World is our second. No, they are not on the same level but that does not mean they are not successful nor does it mean the idea is not worth mentioning.

Shutterbug said...

I am in disbelief of how so many are so frustrated with Disney implementing security chips in their resort mugs and increasing the cost minimally. People, realize that there are those out there who are dishonest and will push it any way they can.. even if it is filling a drink mug/cup/container "illegally" at a resort refill station.

You chose to stay on property, you chose to purchase the DDP or refillable mug so why complain? No one FORCED you to GO to Disney and engage in any of the amenities offered.

I for one am a AP holder, as are my two children and husband. We go to WDW at least 4 times a year if not more. (Since Feb.'12 we have been 5 Times and have three more trips planned by the end of 2013. No we aren't well off, I just take on more work to compensate for our trips). Each time we visit WDW we stay either at POP Century or Port Orleans French Quarter, depending on the deals I can get, and yes I add the QSDP to our stay. The value in the end is decent as I don't drive once there, no worries about food, no parking fees..etc. I will say this too, on each stay we have witnessed many using older mugs at refill stations, filling water bottle with soda, thermal bottles with soda, all sorts of non resort containers with drink before they head out to the park for the day. I have even witnessed resort patrons taking food from the food courts without getting in line to pay. So those of you who think Disney is price gouging.. think again.. Disney is having to implement safety measures as the public is becoming less honest and lacking morals (no one would steal drink or food from restaurants, so why must they while on vacation at WDW? This is why the prices are going up on EVERYTHING).

I hope that when the QSDP eliminates drinks from the plan, that the theme parks have refill drink stations where quests can use their refillable resort mug to get a beverage. I also hope, that Disney will incorporate some sort of recycle plan(where resort guests can turn in old mugs and get a new mug at a reduced cost..or even implement a chip that can be reprogrammed each stay at a further reduced cost to the resort quest for their length of stay, reducing the amount of plastic mugs that could be discarded once a trip has ended. (after all this day and time reduce, reuse or recycle is the way to be). I don't agree with all the price increases, but I do enjoy Disney and all that goes with it. If other's don't like the increases, then perhaps they should just vacation somewhere else.. I for one would enjoy less people in line, reduced wait time for rides etc.. etc.. You get what you pay for..and when you go to Disney, you get a theme park and experience unlike any other theme park...and memories that will last one a lifetime.

Lori from California said...

I'm a Premier passholder who lives in California. For me, bringing the existing mugs back to WDW seems pointless; that's just more stuff to remember to pack in advance of a trip, and frankly, I like the convenience of picking up a mug which I may or may not opt to take home afterwards.

But as someone who presently has four of the resort mugs at home, I do recommend strongly that you offer an option of removing the RFID chip at home so that they can be microwaved. I use my mugs daily to take my coffee to work with me, and the ability to continue to do that would be invaluable. (Besides, you're getting free advertising every time someone sees my WDW mug!)

I'm a bit concerned about how many refills are allowed for the daily total. Is it truly unlimited for the duration of stay? I don't drink soda at all, so all I've ever gotten is Powerade, iced tea, or coffee (and a LOT of the latter two)... I'd like to know that I'll still be able to have access to iced tea or coffee in the large quantities which I'm accustomed to drinking them in. The hot Florida sun scorches the liquid right out of me.

My personal view is that when you're paying $200 or more per night for a hotel, plus countless amounts on merchandise, park entry, and food, a few pennies' worth of tea or coffee is a trifling sum. That said, I can see how it would add up over thousands of people, especially those who do actively steal. But I believe that changing resort cups on a semi-regular basis would likely stop at least part of the theft, and would provide a new collectible option... and it has always surprised me that financial hasn't developed the collectible nature of resort mugs. Not sure why.

Can't say as that I'll complain about the change, really; I don't get to WDW with the frequency that I get to Disneyland, as I'm a half-hour out of Disneyland and a whole country away from WDW. But I figured it was worth putting in my two cents' worth.

Anonymous said...

Just another way to squeeze every penny out. im fine with this... but I better see results in the parks.

Anonymous said...

Funny how much fighting is going on over poison.. dont drink soda it will kill you.

Anonymous said...

Yes. I too purchased mugs that are good for a lifetime.

Anonymous said...

Only thieves will care about this change - period. end.

Anonymous said...

I agree! Children may think that Disney is magical while we are there but the cost of EVERYTHING is becoming very "unmagical" for parents.

Anonymous said...

I am getting the impression that some Disney lovers are a bit cultish and rude. I mean, one $12 corn dog or $57 Character Breakfast will surely cover any stolen soda by those evil families trying to save a dollar in The Most Expensive Place on Earth by sharing a mug. Maybe those of you that go to Disney once a month can band together and form the equivalent of a neighborhood watch for Drink Thieves. Captain Hook could be your leader, since he's real you know.

Anonymous said...

I have never used a device like this before... how clean is it? Do you know where a previous cup has been before you put yours in the same place?

Anonymous said...

I read Jeff's comment AGREED, there is no loss, it is only a win, and then stopped once he was insulted. For those who pay, this is great, for those who cheat, not so much - Insults pull down the quality of the thread and show the writer of the insult, quite possibly has no real argument and lowers them self to insults. Jeff your point has now been clearly made :) Thanks for pointing out the perks!

Anonymous said...

Quit whining. Drink water.

Anonymous said...

Just another way of Disney getting more money out of it's guests. If it's not broke, don't fix it. The refillable mug program they have right now is great. People love it. I, for one, will not be buying the new mug if it's at our resort in September. $18.00 is too much money just for free soda. And what about families that have tons of members? Are they going to share mugs to keep the cost down?

Anonymous said...

OMG! Disney is trying to make money off their guests?! Wow! Who'd have thought a BUSINESS would try to make money!? Maybe they should give everything away for freeeeeeee!!!

Amy said...

I agree with all of your comment!!

Don said...

I love it. Now Disney knows who you are, what rides you go on, what park you are visiting, how much money spent on property and where you eat. Now they know how, what and where you drink in their hotels.

Aut said...

"In your effort to prove your superiority, you also totally missed my second point. What will prevent Disney from using it for tracking or other clandestine purposes with no warning?"
Actually it had nothing to do with "proving superiority" as you so snidely imply. MANY people have no clue how much RFID is used in our daily lives, but fear it because they don't know what it is and/or how it works, or believe the extremist concepts that "big brother" is going to use RFID to track us. The thing I have learned though is, it's not "big brother" that wants to track our habits and profit from them, it's "little brother" like grocery stores and their plastic shopping cards, or Target and their shopping habit analysis that allows them to tell a man his teenager is pregnant via a mailed based on her shopping habits before she has told him.

As for your "tracking or other clandestine purposes" comment.. Exactly what nefarious things do you expect Disney to start doing with the Magic Bands because honestly your comment makes it sound like there is some sort of dark and sinister plan that has yet to be reveled connected to the Bands, or that they will start selling all of the data they collect from them. But really, what company outside of Disney CARES how many times a person buys a Dole Whip, takes a PP photo, how long they wait in line Toy Story Mania, or how many times they meet Mickey park visit? I think to people are forgetting, the user of the band decides just HOW much personal info the band will have attached to it. I tend to wonder what little info will be available to sell other than the day to day goings in the park that only Disney cares about for their own internal research and development.

Anonymous said...

Ok So I am one of those honest people who do not bring back my mugs year after year. And purchase a new mug each time we go. And I am one of those who have seen people bringing even "non disney" mugs to the food courts to get their drinks, not to mention the disney mugs that are so old you can barely see any design on them.

I love the ideal of a controlled system. For those on a shorter stay the price is cheaper for the mug, longer stay is a little higher than the last time we purchased the mugs (probably 2011). It just helps to keep people honest.

If people don't want to pay for the mugs they need to look at other options. . .

Interesting that if you are on a split stay with disney dining you should get 2 mugs each (wow reallY!) I will see in November if that is true.

We love the mugs, its a usefule souvenier and I use them as travel mugs for coffee etc at home.

It would be wonderful if you could "reactivate" the mugs on future trips to help with the whole green thing. It would also be great if they could be used in the parks, however, i hate carrying around stuff like that where I have to keep track of yet another item in the park.

If you are looking for a cheaper way to do Disney do your research. There are lots of way to do Disney on a budget.

Love all the changes coming to disney!!!

Kim Morgan said...

I'm with you. I always said they need aomething for annual pass holders who stay on property. We buy the passes becauae we visit so often ao there is alot of waste.

Anonymous said...

If you are an annual passholder, stop at Publix on the way there and bring a 12 pack with you. Or, pop into one of the Hess stations on property and buy stuff there. Prices at Hess are equivalent to off property - Coke 20 ounce bottles are usually 2 for $2.50, and 2 liters are often on sale. Or, drink water. It does a body good. :)

Anonymous said...

I am an accountant and understand the concept of controlling costs. I have no problem with this new policy. I do take exception to the idea that this will somehow save future guests from having to "pay the price" from prior guests stealing drinks. If this process is going to save Disney money in the long run, why did they go up on the price now? This will, in fact, not stop Disney from going up on the price in the future. We've all heard this time and again from politicians and insurance companies. If we stop the fraud now, it will save us money in the future. The problem is that the price never goes down (ie, taxes, insurance, Disney mugs). I'd like to see Disney come out next year and say, "We are lowering the price of the mugs based on the fact that we no longer have to worry about people stealing soft drinks"...but, we all know that won't happen.

Again...I am not against this new policy. We normally purchase 2 mugs on visits where we think we will get our money's worth. The great thing about Disney is that you can always bring your own. If you really want to save money, buy cans offsite and bring them to the food court. They also let you bring in coolers at both the regular parks and the water parks...which is great!

Anonymous said...

Would the person who keeps saying Disney doesn't pay for the Coke products, please stop. You have no idea what you are talking about. These are sponsorship contracts. Having dealt with them before, the contract requires items and money to go both ways. You are showing a lack of knowledge and are proving you shouldn't even be commenting on things.

As for the mug, I really don't have a problem with the thing. We always get the the DDP, so the mug and our days will come with. I love the suggestion that you can bring it back to be re-activated at a later date. That may be a step 2 after they see how this plays out. Give it some time to see how Disney responds to the plan and how sales go.

If you don't like the plan, don't use it. No one is forcing you to. I have, unfortunately, watched people walk off with items they don't pay for, and have seen the guests scam their way to the front of the lines by faking injuries so they can get a wheelchair. It's a joke. While we try and think the best of people, more often than not, they are going to try and get whatever they can, and let's face it, what's better than getting something for "free."

Anonymous said...

Why on Earth would Disney trust you? I mean, you get that while you might not abuse the option Disney is probably hemorrhaging money from people that regularly do, right? Disney is a business, even if it puts the happiest face on being a business out there, no company trusts the world at large. No company is that stupid. The fact of the matter is, trust isn't even a factor here. They're replacing their existing system with one that lets them reduce the price for customers staying for shorter times because it's increasingly more common for brief stays due to the ongoing poor state of the economy.

A company trusting people. That almost made me laugh.

I like this new system overall, and if it helps Disney control costs, then it's important. We have witnessed lots of ridiculous stealing from the beverage station over the years, as already described above. We always buy the mugs, as we collect them, and then we have Disney magic at home for our coffee, etc. My only thoughts are the price tag, which is pretty steep now for a 4+ day stay, but then again, if I think about how you have to figure in folks who will drink lots and lots each day ... perhaps it's reasonable. We don't drink $18 worth from the beverage station each day, each person. But I bet many do. I love that I can bring my mug to any resort now -- that is sweet! How about that bakery on boardwalk that just opened ... I noticed one of the signs outside talked about drink mugs -- can you fill there too? So my only REQUEST here is PLEASE CHANGE UP THE DESIGN! We've been to the parks 3 times in the past 2 years, and now have lots of mugs with the same design!!! That's not a bad request, is it? :D

Okay, and clearly, I have not had enough Disney coffee magic this morning LOL! Paying $18 for 4+ days of unlimited refills at any resort refill station IS A BARGAIN!! I was thinking $18 each day which would actually be a bit crazy :) COUNT US IN!!

Wendy said...

I think it is just fine. I'm sure the resorts have been ripped off for years. We stay at the Polynesian and get a mug with the meal plan. Every time we are there I run into someone from the community, who is not a paying guest who shows up to watch the fireworks from the beach. I'm sure most get free drinks with their mug. And if for one year we didn't get the meal plan that includes a mug what is stopping me from bringing mine from home and getting free refills all week? I don't mind at all that Disney protects its interests. Maybe it will keep costs down for them and we won't see a meal plan rate hike for longer. :)

Anonymous said...

The price increase is probably more coincidental and to compensate for those of us stay much longer. Refillable mugs haven't increased in price for several years, so I suspect inflation also playing into this----guest room rates and ticket prices have steadily increased, but F&B has largely remained flat

Amy said...

Jeff - Since you're "in the know" :-) can you give us any hints on whether the Magic+ will be up and running by September? Rookie here, so that question might seem crazy...but figured it didn't hurt to ask, eh?

Moira222 said...

The writing was on the wall as more and more people took advantage of bringing mugs from previous trips to refill at their resorts.

if you do the math, for the 4+ days, $18 total really is only $4.50 a day for 4 days. If you were paying out of pocket, you'd spend more than that.

Frankly, I equate this to all of the other laws on the books that force people to do the right thing -- you know, the ones that dictate where you can & can't smoke (because some smokers are totally inconsiderate), where you can & can't walk your dog (because some dog owners are pigs and let their dog's poo anywhere), etc. If people were honest, and did the right thing in the first place, Disney would not have had to resort to this. If you don't like it, drink water.

Anonymous said...

Oh someone bagged on Jeff as not being a real finance guy (and then claimed to be one themselves). Clearly Jeff works (or has worked) in pricing the strategy and revenue management. They're the ones who decide when to increase prices, when to offer discounts, etc.

Most medium sized hotels have a revenue manager on property, with bigger hotels having an entire department devoted to it. Airlines pioneered this, which is why you might be able to buy a seat for much less if you wait until mid-week.

It's why reservations for Fantasmic dinner packages are so freakin' early (forces guests to eat while the restaurant is slow). Or more commonly "early bird" specials. Jeff clearly works in this capacity---and the person who dissed him must not be a "real" finance guy or he would know about yield principles from school.

Oh also, someone referred to Disney as "the most expensive place on earth". They obviously have never vacationed in NYC, Tokyo, Hawaii or Hong Kong.

Anonymous said...

I really think this stinks. I agree it is wrong for people to steal drinks (but soda in those machines is rather cheap, if Disney even pays anything to Coke). We are DVC and annual pass holders; we average 10 stays at Disney a year. What are we going to do with 20 cups a year? Do we refill our mugs - yes, with water. This is an issue that must be addressed, but this is not the way to go. People that return to Disney often should be allowed to use the same mugs!

Anonymous said...

"People that return to Disney often should be allowed to use the same mugs!"

So, with this logic, I should be able to use last year's annual pass this year? :)

Anonymous said...

I don't know why people complain, if you are unhappy about this just take your own and that's it... We take our own Sodas and water. Disney is getting very expensive we use to go 3 times a year and now only gone once a year....

Anonymous said...

I agree there should be an option for those of us who visit Disney several times a year to bring our RFID mugs back and have them reactivated. It seems like it is a win win- save the environment and also cheaper for Disney to reactivate than provide a new mug. Also, please get better quality coffee (Starbucks for instance) at the resorts.

The Big Tuna said...

I don't know how people can even drink that much Soda. Drink water it's free. That's about the only thing that is at Disney World. I'm going in November and canKt wait. Yes everything costs more but what do you know of that has gone down in price? Natural Gas is about all I can think of. Everyone is out to make a buck and so is the mouse. They find billions of barrels of oil and yet the price goes up. Universal was doing all they could to get people in their parks and then they built HP and jacked up the prices. Disney will charge as much as they can until people stop going. But judging by the fact attendance at parks and hotels is going up they won't be lowering prices anytime soon. A 20 ounce soda probably costs them a couple of cents due to the volume they buy. Pure profit just like popcorn at the movies.

Anonymous said...

Most annual passholders who make multiple trips every year drive---why wouldn't you just buy sodas at Walmart en route? This is clearly a program that was always intended for resort guests who fly in.

I'm also mystified as to why this is so distressing---you've already spent far more on your hotel room and your annual pass, why are you flipping out over fountain soda prices?

I do notice the biggest complainers about this are annual passholders and DVC members---you've already, literally, spent tens of thousands with WDW----why is a $2 on a quite good bargain (that you can sometimes get completely for free during free dining promotions) so upsetting?

Anonymous said...

Disney vacations are not cheap vacations to begin with, My family always purchased a mug every trip for the convenience but I feel this is taking it a little to far. It's just soda/juice/tea. looks like I will be bringing my own drinks with me which will cost me far less and I will not have to purchase a mug.

Anonymous said...

I'd love for them to extend this use to the parks. Paying for a day of use when most of the guest's days are spent IN the parks seems a bit odd, doesn't it?

Anonymous said...

Yeah but where's the photos of Harry Potter stuff?!

Anonymous said...

Being a former GM of a McDonalds, I can tell you that soft drinks is where restaurants make their money. The mark up on soda is HUGE. McDonalds can fill a large styrofoam cup with ice and side for around .15 cents. Oh, and that includes the lid and straw and labor. Wow, I've never actually figured the percentage, it's more than 300% profit. The point is, soda is a highly profitable part of the restaurant industry. However, Disney sucks money out of its customers pockets around every corner. I think this is absurd to nickel and dime customers who pay thousands of dollars to be there, especially when the average customer at WDW spends money while there, in addition to accommodations and park tickets,$200-500 in souvenirs, restaurants that cost $20-50 per person. Then there's places like BBB, and Pirates League. The bottom line is Disney is a cash cow, and I don't think is hurting because someone snagged a free soda.

I think it is a really bad idea. The food courts are crazy enough and to add confusion about getting a drink will just be nuts. What happens when you get mug of the wrong soda, or it is running out and watery? There are never any employees around to help. Then you have to get back in line at the cashier and wait for help? All while balancing a tray with overpriced food getting cold? It does say that Disney does not trust you. They are really squeezing blood out of us. Blah. Hate it. Will not buy one every again. Have never reused my mug. Why would they spend millions of dollars on a new system to infuriate their so called "guests"?

The change doesn't bother me as much as having a cup that is no good by the time you come in if you stay till the park closes. Hopefully this will be a way to let people that have purchased cups for their stay to be able to get drinks early in the morning and late at night.

Ye gods, more than one soda a day is too much for me. Do I have to pay to refill them with ice water?

If I bought an "endless refill" mug back in the day, does that contractual agreement still stand? If they say no, will Dewey, Cheatam and Howe take the case?

Thanks for the informed commentary and information.
If I went to WDW often, I might pay for an annual pass for a refillable mug. 50 bucks or so.

Savo said...

Theses cups are good if your on the dinning plan. We used theses cups in 08&11 and everyday we had a tea or coffee to start the day off and before we left for the parks we had a soft drink to take with us. When in the park we had 2 drinks with our meal and if we wanted another as a snack credit. Then refilled ours drinks on the way back to our rooms.

NeverlandWendy said...

This is a little ridiculous for us. We are there in WDW about4-5 times a year. For 7nights at a time, we don't do DDP because we have TiW...it would be ridiculous for us to buy new mugs each and every time we go. What a waste. They need to be "greener" for sure.

WDW should have been changing the mugs every year or every 6 months, I stead of keeping the same design for years I own about 12 or more of these mugs. Do we buy them every time? No, but we don't use them hardly at all...one trip, we brought them and never used them because we didn't want to carry them around the park afterwards.

I spend craploads of money at WDW...souvineers, dining, always at deluxe hotels...every trip we spend about $1,000 on souvineers alone, I don't think Disney is hurting from my visits. We never hang out at the hotels all day long-always at the parks. The mugs don't get used. I guess this will make garden grocer my best friend...because we will never drink $20 each of drinks out of that silly mug.

Anonymous said...

Way to go Jeff. Is this the concept that Walt Disney wanted ? The drinks are free for Disney anyhow by the sponsor coke or pepsi or whoever. How can you justify prices anyhow? Charging so much for a one day park hopper ticket? It takes half a day to get a bus to go from one park to another. Thanks for coming to our park it's only $14.00 to park your car ! The high rollers get the best locations to see the fireworks and the regular passholders are like 3rd class on the titanic. I know what I'm talking about we stay there 4 months every winter since 1973. We love the romance of the original Disney concept. Like you say "remember the magic" we are trying to but you guys are taking it away.

ANGIERAE said...

Someone mentioned Cedar Fair: This year at Cedar Point I was able to buy a $12 refillable mug that gets me 99c refills all summer. So unless you're only going to go once, there's no reason at all to spend $5 on a bottle of pop (I honestly have no idea how much bottles of pop are at Cedar Point, I never generally bought soda there until this year, because the refillable mugs + platinum season pass was a fabulous deal for us.

As for Disney, we're going to spend 3 days there with no dining plan but I might be tempted to buy mugs - but only if they are different from the 2012 mugs, which it looks like they aren't. We'll probably just bring a case of water to have in the room, and get water at CS.

Dsnysux said...

Disney must not have made enough "profit" last year and the executives didn't get their million dollar bonus'. I guess the ticket price increases and the hotel room price increases wasn't enough. So now they want to punish the hands that feed them because of the 3 cent drink refills we are "stealing"...ooooohhhhhh. Well, I WON'T purchase a cup with every time I stay there (which is more that any executives do) and I will get my refills. Disney can take my annual pass and stick it you know where.

Too big for your britches said...

Don;t buy the mugs people they are a rip-off. As if Disney doesn't make enough off us annually. Bring your own drinks and keep them in the refrigerator that is in your rooms! People need to start saying "enough is enough". Do you really drink $15 worth of soda during your visit and let's remember YOU CAN'T EVEN USE THEM IN THE PARKS!!!! Let me bend over a little farther Disney.

Grumpy said...

Get a Busch Gardens/Sea World pass. I've had the same passholder cup for 8+ years and those refills are only
.99 with the refillable cup....and they are BIG cups!!!

Anonymous said...

Wow, you definitely don't go to Six Flags St. Louis. It only cost our family of 4 $200 for season passes. Food is only $10 a plate and two of us share it, and it is clean with most of the rides working well. Their drink bottle was $10 for the season and refills are $1 each or $4 for the day. I think this is comparable to what Disney is offering. We can't afford Disney every year so on the odd years we do Six Flags.

WDW going bankrupt said...

Well "Jeff" (who claims to work in finance at WDW) I've been on the fence about whether or not to renew my pass again this year and I think you just made up my mind! I'd rather give my $250 to a company that isn't as greedy as yours. How's that hit your bottom dollar? The rest of you Florida Residents need to rethink about giving your money to this company year after year. After all, WE ARE their biggest support system. Us FL residents spend more money annually than a family visiting just one time. Not so much the happiest place on earth anymore now is it? HAVE A MAGICAL DAY!!!

Audra - not Anonymous because I got nothing to hide! said...

I am one of those people that is still using my resort mugs from 10 years ago, and as recently as 5 years ago. I ADMIT IT. I am not a thief. I'm just sick and tired of being nickel and dimed to death every time I stay at Disney. I don't steal merchandise, towels, food but you're d*mn right I get my refills because IMO that is included in my over priced resort and passholder rates that continue to go up! I get about 3 soft drink refills and about 3 coffee refills during my weekend stay and if you think I'm buying a mug with every visit, NOT HAPPENING! I don't drink $15 worth of beverages. I shake my head at these families that go into the food court and purchase $100 worth of cups thinking at the executives and CEO's sitting in their nice fancy offices laughing their @sses off. If I can afford to stay at Disney 5 to 10 weekends every year I can certainly afford these ridiculous mugs every time I visit BUT I WON'T BUY ONE. It's the principal.

Anonymous said...

Thank You for the knowledge Jeff. Now if you would just tell me the secret to getting a PIN you would be my new best friend. :)

Anonymous said...

When was the last time you went that you can't remember if Disney sells Coke or Pepsi products? Feel free not to return.

Anonymous said...

it wont save money. I just see families buying one mug filling it and pouring it into another cup/mug and filling it again.

Jeff in Finance. I think I will like the new plan. I am a DVC member, stockholder, and frequent guest. I have a suggestion. Since Disney wants to be out front of the Green issue, and reduce solid waste, let's make a way to re-activate old mugs for new stays. I stayed at WDW Resorts 4 separate times in 2012 and once so far in 2013. I have so many old mugs. I don't need more mugs. This seems like an easy fix for people like me.

I would like it if they were 'green' and could be reactivated during another stay like others. I think the people that go several times a year won't see any value in these if they are not on the DP. I know I personally don't. I'll continue bringing my own drinks and using the in-room fridge. Garden Grocer will get even busier. LOL New designs could change my mind on that, but I don't want the same cup 4 times a year for each member of my family. What a waste of money and cabinet space that would be.

Anonymous said...

You could always donate the used cups to Goodwill or other charities.

I also am amused by all the "but I'm not stealing merchandise...".
Stealing is stealing. I'm not perfect, and I've bent a rule here or there myself, but I own it and KNOW and accept that I am in the wrong.

Heather said...

I do like the idea of being able to reuse the cup from previous trips and paying a reduced price. We have sooo many cups from previous trips I'm about done lol.
Also I think Disney should offer a DVC and/or Passholders option that would make the cup good for the year for us multi-visiting guests. We leave near Sesame Place and they offer that there( they also already have this system for their soda machines). So instead of 18+ for your trip you maybe pay $25 for the year. Again this is something Sesame Place offers.
Love Disney! my first visit I was 3 months old and I now take my kids. I do see how people can get upset because Disney does have a deal with Coke, Yes they pay for the bottled products but the syrup they get for free as incentive to only serve Coke products.

Anonymous said...

Disney hemorrhaging money from people bringing mugs back and filling them? Have you priced a stay lately. Be serious.

Anonymous said...

As a former (recently) Disney Cast Member, I beg to differ. Healthcare is not free. I had money deducted from my check weekly to cover my health insurance. The company contributed to the plan, but I paid copays for doctor visits.

Anonymous said...

I never did read any clarification on the "lifetime mugs'. Our family of 5 bought them in 1998, being assured that they were lifetime at POR. This is one of the reasons why we rebooked there two more times. Now my daughter and I continue to go, and stay at POR and I feel that I am being honest when I bring back my mug. Please, someone clarify this for me so that I can stop storing them! I am not a person who uses them at home. BTW, I don't drink a lot of soda, maybe one per day and one coffee.

My biggest concern is that so many of these mugs are ending up in our landfills. On our last trip, all 3 of us left our mugs in the room. Garbage. It is a shame that they don't give a bit of a discount to re-use them, even $2-3 off.

Theresa said...

What about the mugs that they sell in the parks sometimes with beverages? Could you buy one of those as your chosen mug? Or add refills at your resort?

Anonymous said...

If you buy a rapid refill cup now can you recharge it for your next stay?

Anonymous said...

Yes, the chip is attached to the bottom of the cup.

Anonymous said...

I agree with this new plan for the resort mugs. My problem is with the QS dining plan being changed. My feeling is that a drink should automatically come with it. As for your being able to bring your resort mug with you to the parks........ Who wants to have to lug all that around with them? I don't want to have to keep up with them in the parks, and think of all the potential mug thieves taking them off the strollers that are parked! Also....pleaseeee bring new mug designs

Anonymous said...

it is not a way to make more money. Many guest abuse the free refill syem with old mugs thinkng they will get away with it. But this will help control the system and reall add efficncy and avoid waste. Now to me it really ensures accountbaility and makes for a far experience. Not the use of the rfid technology happens property wide and they want to use it to help the refill sysem whic I think is a great idea so there is no one thinking they will get a free ride

Chris Wade said...

Jeff,

If you really do work for Disney, you would know that Coke offers Coke Freestyle Machines that can be setup to read RFID chips, are modular (as they contain everything needed within the machine it's self), quick and easy to install. They can use WiFi to connect to the network.

All you would need to do is setup these machines around the resorts and parks. Then the mugs could easily be used throughout the parks and resorts.

I would definitely welcome being able to use the mugs in the parks, we bring them as it is. We ask at TS restaurants if we can get one more refill of what we are drinking and put it in our mugs. I have yet to have a server deny this and many will offer and additional to go cup. It's a great way to stay hydrated in Florida. So, to be able to refill without getting a QS meal makes a lot of sense. But this could be installed and implemented within the week, if you so chose to do so with the freestyle machines. And as an added bonus, there would be a lot more flavors available, which would at least provide a legitimate reason for the increase.

But as for this preventing theft, I call BS....realistically, even counting labor, the cost for a soda is no more than $0.25 per LARGE cup.

This is really about getting every penny you can out of each guest.

Even your own arguments about other parks has major holes in it. Virtually every other theme park offers one of the following:
Buy a souvenir sipper and get same day refills for free and future refills for $0.99 each.

Buy a souvenir sipper and get all refills for $0.99

As a general rule, the sippers run between $7.99-$9.99

This is a potential source of money that Disney has been missing out on for a long, long time now. But this proves that your argument that soda are more expensive at other parks is not true.

As far as bringing old mugs back, that should be left up to the individual guests. While many might choose not to do so, it won't cost anything extra to set it up. So you could be seen as being more environmentally friendly, without extra costs and at a $3 savings per mug, say a family of 7 would be saving $21, plus tax.This does add up.

Ohanamom said...

Wow!Honestly, if you dont like the cost or idea of this option, then DONT pay for it. purchase your soda outside of the park and bask in your savings. Yes, Disney is ever increasing their prices, and YES there are plenty of dishonest people out there looking for ways to cheat the system. If you arent one of them, why get so upset? Disney is well aware of the actual LOW cost to make these drinks available to guests, and guess what-so are all the restaurants you all frequent regularly and the stores that sell you those "affordable" options as well-you pay .79-$1.00 for a 2ltr that cost the company what, .10 or less to make? And you are complaining about Disney's cost? No matter where you go for your soda/coffee you are being ripped off by mark ups. I dont see why this is such a "hot button" issue, if you dont like the cost, dont invest your money into it.

Anonymous said...

I can't help but feel that at least *part* of Disney's incentive to implement this program, in addition to the valuable metric data, is to at least slow down the abuses caused by cast members visiting the property on their off-hours, and (annual) pass holders. These two groups in particular (although they're hardly the only ones), seem to think Disney "owes them" something, and will gladly exploit even the smallest of loopholes to their advantage.

Over the years Disney has slowly ratcheted up the lack of access to certain common areas on property to help prevent abuses and make sure these areas are available to (paying) guests.

To be honest, I don't think Disney's going far enough in this regard, but the Rapid Fill program is definitely a great step forward.

Anonymous said...

"Disney CEO Iger Saw 20% Rise in Pay to $40.2 Million in 2012"

Anonymous said...

Agree about the annual pass holders and their entitlement---I'm not really sure why. But they seem to think they're VERY special and thus entitled to everything else free.

There's a lot of basic cheapness in almost everything they post--there's complaints about tips being added for large parties (and the implication they'd stiff the staff if they could), complaints about rooms being higher during peak seasons (something done by every hotel in the world and completely legal), basically complaints about spending $$$ on anything.

I'm really not sure where this entitlement stems from----because I can't imagine feeling I'm endlessly owed something, myself.

As for Iger's pay increasing---and? Disney's a private company, they can do (within regulations) what they want. If they had contributed to the financial collapse, took bail out money, an irresponsible corporate partner, shirked their taxes or sought to influence elections or started astro turf groups, I'd feel differently. Otherwise, so what?

Jasper said...

All of this obsession about sodas is pathetic. The average Disney visitor is fat or obese and drinking sodas all day long is one of the reasons for this. Switch to free water, fatties, and lighten up.

Anonymous said...

So I maybe dumb but you still can't refill at the parks only hotels?

Anonymous said...

Chris Wade said: "But as for this preventing theft, I call BS....realistically, even counting labor, the cost for a soda is no more than $0.25 per LARGE cup. This is really about getting every penny you can out of each guest."

So it's OK to not pay on your 2nd, 3rd, 4th trip because it doesn't cost Disney much? What's the dollar limit before it actually becomes theft? I'm certainly no angel but I don't try to justify things I know are wrong.

Of course, they are trying to get money out of people. That's how business works. People using old mugs (ie theft) doesn't bring in money.

Anonymous said...

Disney steals from families everyday. It's ok to reduce their take by just a little bit.

Anonymous said...

How exactly do they "steal from families every day"? By charging clearly posted prices and policies, which by paying and attending, you've agreed to by legal default?

Please, do not discuss politics here on OTPN, as that is not among the topics covered by our site. Thank you for your cooperation!

Anonymous said...

I agree. I don't even drink soft drinks any more (although I do occasionally get the tea and lemonade), but the point to me is, we were told when we purchased the mugs years ago that they were lifetime mugs--never expiring. And yes, we do bring them back year after year, until we were told a few years ago that policy had changed. To me, that's like paying for a "never expiring" option on your admission ticket, then to be told some time later that the policy had changed. I think if they make something available as never-expiring, they should honor that. I often wondered how much money they were really losing; soft drinks have some of the largest profit margins of any food and beverage items, costing only pennies, and sold for extremely high mark-ups. Is the negative public relations in this change (of the never expiring mugs eventually expiring) really worth it? But like I said, I don't even use it any more, so I don't have a dog in this fight. I ultimately think that people should vote with their feet; if they don't like it, don't buy it, and eventually it will go away, but I do think business should honor their policies, whether it be a guarantee or a policy like this. To me, that's the issue.

Anonymous said...

For the tiny minority of people with life time mugs, I would lay dollars to doughnuts that either

A) Disney always gave themselves an out with a "subject to change" clause (we are talking about a huge company, with an army of lawyers, after all).

Or

B) if you show them your lifetime mug, you will somehow be grandfathered in.

But again, this is a tiny group and NOT the ones who wildly abused the system.

Anonymous said...

Most people that comment here are inside a Disney Bubble. To them Disney can do no wrong no matter how much they rip people off. To most of the people in the real world, outside of the Disney Bubble, Disney does offer a nice product but they feel like they've been raked over the coals after the Magic is over. Its sorta like the Cable company, there isn't much competition so they can do whatever they want to you and you have to live with it.

Anonymous said...

Yeah man time for you to leave, more room for me wahahaha

Anonymous said...

No kidding us fools end up paying the bill for thieves. I mean poor families

Anonymous said...

Boohoo I dropped out of skool and life sucks boohoo

Anonymous said...

just wear your tin foil hat bro, you know you have one . You'll be fine

Anonymous said...

You are a thief if you steal .

Anonymous said...

Not sure what this "Disney Bubble" is, seeing as that I personally live in Portland, OR and many of the objectors are annual pass holders, living in Florida (and thus receiving a an additional discount), but...

I used to work for an upscale, boutique hotel chain with a similar reputation to Disney---and they were vastly more expensive (and you got a lot less). Plus they had super cheap toothbrushes as honor bar items and charged $10 bucks for them.

Cruise lines charge for fountain soda, too. $5.00 per person, per day--and that's the discounted package rate! If you bring your own soda cans on board, they confiscate and discard it. When you go on shore visits, you'll pay additional for soda.

Apparently you've never visited NYC or a resort in Hawaii. During peak season, many resorts enforce a week's minimum stay and charge daily resort fees----and whether you use the resort amenities is not part of the equation.

To me, the people complaining are in an entitlement/cheapness bubble. Which is perfectly fine (their $$$ to spend as they so wish), but nothing to whine about. And certainly doesn't make me ill-informed or "raked over the coals"...because I would be the experienced traveler.

Anonymous said...

I got a life time mug 15 years ago been to WDW 99 times since . I still haven't gotten my $8.99 worth yet in my opinion! Golly gee hos this ain't right! LOL

Anonymous said...

Funniest reply yet and sums it all up. Get over you free forever mugs.

Anonymous said...

Just because you say you're not a thief doesn't mean you're not a thief.

Native_Floridian said...

Personally I like Universal better its only 99 cents to refill any cup you buy; harry potter mug or refillable cup. They also give you a discount on frozen lemonade or butter beer refills in your cup. Disney used to add exciting new rides now its just become an old shopping mall that nickels and dimes its customers. You pay more money to go to theme parks with no new rides, its a magic trick only a rat would pull

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said:

Do we refill our mugs - yes, with water. This is an issue that must be addressed, but this is not the way to go. People that return to Disney often should be allowed to use the same mugs!

Based on what Jeff said above, refilling your old mugs with water will not be a problem, as they are not RFID controlled. His exact statement was "Water and ice will still be available and any cup can be used." So you don't have anything to worry about.

Trent said...

This discussion is STILL going on?!

Horned Frog Fan said...

Hi, my name is Lori, and I am a Disney addict! And, yes, I do sometimes feel like I need a 12 step program for the Disney obsession. LOL!

We always use the DDP, and get the refill mugs with the DDP. Best. Thing. Ever!!!

I just LOVE it when we get there and I am sitting by the pool with our kids, and my husband brings me my new mug filled with unsweet tea. It's like an early Christmas present for me!

Even if we weren't using the DDP, I would still purchase the cup. You can't beat the $4 per day for drinks at a theme park.

We go every year, and have gotten the same style cup for the past three years, at least. I am still happy with it. I would love to see a new design, but I would be perfectly content with new colors. Jeff, if you have any pull, I am quite partial to purple! =)

Anonymous said...

I think for those w ho think the 99 cent refills would be better, I think the 99 cents after the initial purchase would add up to much more than $17.99 over a week or longer stay.

Anonymous said...

The .99 cent refills are absolutely not a bargain over a week. Figure you first have to buy a Universal mug---even assuming you go cheap and get the plastic equivalent, I'm sure they charge $3-$4 minimum. At that point, if you fill your mug 2X per day (e.g. one cup of coffee and one soda), you've spent the same you would've on the unlimited refillable mug. Go up to 3 beverages per day and it's $25.

Fascinating to me how people can't figure out basic math.

As for this continuing----go to the Disney Dining blog, much freaking out over there, too!

Anonymous said...

i think it's a great way to keep people honest. when we stayed at the music resort last october, we saw SO many people just filling up their own mugs they brought from home. as expensive as disney is, that's still considered stealing. i'm for it. and if you have such a problem with disney's pricing, just remember, no one is making you go. you're choosing to fork over your hard earned dollars. even though i have a lot of medical bills, it's still worth it for me to spend my hard earned cash on disney. it's the only escape from the real world, of brain tumors, that i have.

DisneyDame said...

I will never understand why some people think that because they paid so much for their Disney vacation, they are somehow "owed" something for doing so. A case in point: a dear friend of mine was in WDW last month and was visiting the Confectionary in MK with her young son. They were looking over all the offerings while he decided what he wanted to spend some of his vacation money on. Another woman and her son came up to the dispensers holding the various M&M's. My friend watched in disgust as the woman proceeded to dispense a large serving of M&M's into her hand, and then turned around and headed for the exit! Another guest, who had also watched this transpire, confronted her before she got to the door and said "you do realize you have to pay for that don't you?" The woman responded by telling her to **** off and mind her own business, that Disney charges such ridiculous prices for admission she felt she more than paid for a "bit of candy" with her ticket price, and marched right out, pulling her son behind her with one hand and clenching her stolen candy in the other. Now I'm sure the majority of people who reuse their old mugs year after year would never dream of stealing candy from one of the stores, but it's really no different, is it? They justify it by saying that Disney can afford it, they paid a high cost for their vacation, it's just a few pennies worth of soda ... etc. But the bottom line is whether it's a handful of M&M's from the Confectionary, a key chain from Mouse Gears or a mug of soda from the resort food court, it's theft.

MickeyNMInnie said...

As someone who has visited WDW 7 times in the past two years (with three more visits in the next year in the works), I would LOVE to see an option to re-activate the RFID chip in the mugs. A discount would be great, but even without one, I have no need for 20+ identical mugs in my house, and I think if a discount was offered, Disney would be able to produce significantly fewer mugs in the long run. Plus, a $2/person discount to reuse a mug over 10 trips adds up (to more than enough to pay for the drinks for the next trip!)

I also believe I read somewhere that Disney is considering using these same mugs in the parks in the future? That would be great! I carry my mug around the parks with me. I do purchase my drinks, but I usually dump them into my mug to keep them cooler and toss the paper cup. I'm thinking about how many paper cups could be saved if I could just pay for them to fill my mug alone; how much would that save if everyone had that option?

Anonymous said...

People pay Almost $100 a night for a cheap room on Disney property and then dislike paying more money for their cheap soda. I don't drink soda no more at all. Ice and water is good for me and I am surprised they don't charge for that cup yet.

I personally stay off site at lower prices. And even if I stay at a off site location for $50 and then when I pay the $15 for parking and the high side guess of $10 used for gas my $75 total spent is still cheaper then a Disney hotel. Also when I go I do other stuff other then Disney alone as there is so much more in the area there and sometimes it is nice to just take it easy every couple days.

Anonymous said...

How many refills per day are you aloud? How much time between refills? Please Terry

Aut said...

You will be allowed unlimited at your resort during the time frame you purchase. But there will be a time limit between re-fills to keep people from giving the whole family a drink (ie take the cup, dump it in another, refill it dump the contents in another paper cup, repeat).

Anonymous said...

I've seen the guests that frequent WDW, are you sure allowing easier access to soda is the best idea?

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