Are you in the middle of planning your Advanced Dining Reservations for your upcoming Walt Disney World Vacation? You’re probably completely overwhelmed at all your many options and if you’re using a Disney Dining Plan you’re trying to figure out your meal credits as well. So you might be a little stuck!
If you’ve got a princess of you’re own then you’re probably already fantasizing about the first time your sweetie pie meets her favorite Princess. You may have seen that Disney World has two options for Princess-centered meals. You can either book Cinderella’s Royal Table in Magic Kingdom, or Akershus in Epcot.
You may have noticed that Cinderella’s Royal Table is two meal-credits and Akershus is only one and might be wondering how the two compare in order to make a choice.
Well, I can’t tell what is best for your family, but I can tell you about our family’s experiences. So before any of you FREAK OUT because you don’t like my opinion realize that it IS an opinion. 🙂
So lets break it down: Akershus vs Cindy’s Royal Table… LETS GET READY TO RUMBLE <DING! DING!>
There is absolutely no difference in characters as neither of the meals guarantee which Princesses will be there at any given time. At both Akershus and Cindy’s you have a chance of catching Cinderella, Belle (either in ballgown or regular dress), Ariel (in ballgown), Snow White, Princess Aurora, & Jasmine. You’re definitely going to see Cinderella at Royal Table. Guaranteed! But we have been to Akershus three times and Cinderella has ALWAYS been there. Either way you’re getting 4 beautiful princesses coming to your table to give your princesses a squeeze, a photo, and an autograph. So this is not a deciding factor to me at all. You do not get more time with the Princesses at one than the other based on our experiences either.
Akershus – Don’t be fooled, this breakfast may be in Norway, but its a typical all American breakfast. You can also eat all you’d like (but you have to ask). They will bring you get bacon, breakfast breads, fresh fruit, potato casserole, sausage, & scrambled eggs. Beverages such as coffee, juices and milk are all included.
Cindy’s – All you care to eat and they bring the food to your table. They bring you bacon, french toast, fresh fruit, granola, pastries, potatoes, sausage, & scrambled eggs. Beverages such as coffee, cocoa, ice tea, lemonade, milk, punch, soda, & tea. You can pay extra for cappuccino, espresso, or sparkling water.
Akershus- Much more “Norwegian”. It begins with “Taste of Norway” deli meats, cold seafood, salads, cheese, and breads. For main course you can choose from Jarlsberg cheese & leek soup, Lamb, Pasta, Pulled Pork, Salmon, Soup & Sandwich, Traditional Kjottkake, & Trout. The dessert plate has Chocolate Mousse, Lingonberry Cheesecake & Rice Cream. There are many different Norwegian adult beverages to try.
Cindy’s – Appetizers, A choice of entrees – Grilled Chicken Salad, Pasta al Pomodoro, Pork Tenderloin, Shepard’s Pie, Salmon Salad, Salmon. Children can choose from chicken strips, pasta marinara, pretzel dogs, & shepard’s pie. Dessert options include Chocolate Cream Cheese Buckle, Rice pudding, Sorbet and a beverage. There is no alcohol served in Magic Kingdom.
Akershus – Also very “Norweigen” it also includes the “Taste of Norway”. Dinner main course selections include: Beef Short Ribs, Cod, Lamb, Pasta, Salmon, Traditional Kjottkake, & Venison Stew. The dessert plate had Chocolate Mousse, Lingonberry Cheesecake & Rice Cream. There are many different Norwegian adult beverages to try.
Cindy’s – Appetizers, A choice of entrees – Beef Tenderloin, Braised Cobia, Duck Confit, Fried Chicken, Pork Chop, & Vegetarian Cassoulet. Desserts include the Chef’s Dessert Trio, Creme Caramel, Chocolate Mousse, and Sorbet, again, there is no alcohol served in Magic Kingdom.
As you can see food is comparable. Both are nice high-end restaurants from a food perspective and children can find things to eat at both.
Akershus – After you check in you will wait a bit and then be called to be seated. They will take you to a small nook where you will get your picture taken with a Princess. This Princess will not rotate through the meal, so this is your one and only chance to get your photo with her. This picture will be free to you, so don’t skip it. Then you will be seated. Your waiter (who will be Norwegian) will take your drink orders and meal order. While you wait you’re likely to have at least one Princess rotate to your table. The Princesses have an established pattern that they rotate through, so don’t bother calling over to them and do NOT let your children run across the room to Princesses while they’re at a different table. While you eat Princesses will rotate to you. Stay until you’ve seen all the Princesses you want to even if you’re done eating. They will bring your photo package to your table. When you’re done you’ll get your check and leave.
Cinderella’s Royal Table – After you check in you will will wait a bit and then be called to be seated. You will be taken into the “throne room” where you will have a picture taken with Cinderella and she will spend a little time with your family (she does not rotate upstairs, so this is your only brief time with Cindy). I don’t remember feeling rushed through that. Cindy’s dining room is much smaller than Akershus and so you might feel a little closer to the families around you in proximity (this is also why its so hard to get a reservation). Your waiter will come and take your drink order and the Princesses will begin their rotation similar to that of Akershus. One cool thing that Cindy’s does is periodically Princesses will be “announced” into the room and people will clap for them. At some point during your meal they will have a “Wishing Ceremony”. Princes are all brought a plastic sword and Princesses are brought a magic wand. They are each given a blue “wishing star”. When the ceremony begins it walks the Princes and Princesses through what to do: closing their eyes, making a wish, then they all do a Bibbidi Bobbidi Boo and when you look up to the ceiling all of the lights twinkle momentarily. You’re allowed to keep the wand, sword, and wishing star.Then you will clear you’re check and leave.
Akershus – 1 table service meal credit.
Cinderella’s Royal Table – 2 table service meal credits.
Akershus – (includes tax & photo package) Breakfast $39.40/adults; $23.42/children 3-9. Lunch: $41.53/adult; $24.49/children 3–9. Dinner $46.85/adult; $25.55/children.
Cinderella’s Royal Table -(includes tax, photo package, & a wand/sword/wishing star) Breakfast $44.80/adult; $29.86/ children 3-9. Lunch: $48.54/adult; $31.11/ children 3-9. Dinner $54.76/ adult; $33.60 children 3-9.
The cost is much bigger issue for those people on the Disney Dining Plan who burn an additional meal credit, than for those people just paying cash. It’s basically the difference between paying (in credits) $300.00 for a meal for a family of 4 at Cinderella’s Royal Table instead of $128.00 for the same meal for the same family in cash. Essentially you could go to Akerhaus TWICE for the same amount of credits you can go to Cinderella’s table once.
Cost between Akershus and Cinderella’s Royal table is very comparable if you’re paying cash for the meal. And if you’re on the Premium Dining plan you’re not going to care anyway because you’ll likely end up with credits to burn.
So what is the Disney Diva’s verdict? Is Cinderella’s Royal Table WORTH the two dining credits? My answer would be, If you’re on Premium Dining Plan then Yes. The experience is great and you’ve got credits. If you’re not then I would say no. If you’re paying cash then all things being equal I’d say yes Cinderella’s Royal Table is great because it gives you the chance to eat inside the castle. If you’re doing Disney on a budget however and every dollar counts then the Akershus is great and will give you an awesome experience. Final say? Like everything.. . do what is best for your family and your situation!
- Her Royal Highness Package-Cinderella’s Royal Table (chipandco.com)
- Everyone Gets The “Royal Treatment” When Dining With Cinderella (chipandco.com)