Mobile Ordering is one of the best new things to come out of the 2020 closure, especially because it’s handy for a lot of folks.
And in the Food Allergy/Restriction community, I love it, because it makes the lines shorter as regular foodies don’t wait in line!
But I don’t recommend it all the time, as some people will benefit from mobile ordering, and other’s will be better off talking to a Chef or Coordinator.
Should you use Mobile Ordering if you have Food Allergies or a Food Restriction?
You’ll need to determine your comfort level, but at first glance I do not recommend mobile ordering, as there’s no way to confirm ingredients ahead of time, or check for may contain or shared facility warnings (As Disney does not pay attention to those when making allergy menus). Mobile Ordering works best for Intolerances and Ethical Food Restrictions.
Ready to plan your trip to Disney World with Restrictions? See the Best Restaurants with Food Allergies, where we’ve gathered up all the best places to eat at Disney World resort (from Table Service to Quick Service)
⭐ If this is your First Time to Disney World, you’ll want all the insider tips and done for you plans found in the Food Allergies at Disney World Made Easy Guide
***As Always, please speak to a qualified restaurant employee when ordering food. In order to see the most accurate ingredients and risk assessment, you will need to confirm allergy safety in real-time. This is my personal experience, I am not employed or endorsed by companies or brands mentioned.***
Can you Mobile Order with Food Allergies?
Yes, You can do anything that you feel comfortable with! Since Food Allergies and Restrictions fall on a spectrum of comfort, you may feel comfortable ordering through Mobile Ordering.
While I have tested it as a Food Allergy Theme Park Blogger, I have never felt 100% comfortable with the procedures and handlings for mobile order (though this could improve with time and modifications on Disney’s side!). This isn’t always the case though, as Disney Buffets are great for Food Allergies and so are the Magic Kingdom dessert parties (which have years of experience over Mobile Ordering!)
What Disney provides in the form of Allergy Menus and Guides is covered by heavy disclaimers, as they do not claim to provide a ‘free from menu’ and instead a ‘friendly’ menu.
What does Friendly even mean? It means that this is good for some people, like those with an intolerance, but needs to be double and triple checked for those with allergies or a moderate to severe restriction. Friendly means different things to different managers, can include ‘may contain or shared equipment’ statements, and may come in contact with the allergen.
The Number One Reason you should declare all allergens when mobile ordering
The number one reason is the Meat Thermometers used for Quality Control at Disney World… because they stick it in one pile of food, wipe it with a napkin, and stick it in the next pile of food. I’ve seen it with my own eyes multiple times… but the blatant cross contact is concerning.
Let staff know, so that can pull fresh items.
When you let staff know that you have an allergy order, the can be prepared with items that are not currently on the line that have cross contact.
If you have more than one allergen, it’s really important you talk to a Cast Member! Because you can only order one allergy at a time through mobile ordering, do not assume that the food is prepared without the second allergen. Instead, see the steps below with how to order with multiple allergens. (the exception to this is peanut and treenut, which Disney lumps together)
The number two reason? So you can check ingredients!
For more on finding ingredients, see examples of the allergen binders at Disney World.
What Does Disney World say about Mobile Ordering with Dietary Restrictions like Gluten Free or Food Allergies?
Here’s the Disclaimer that Disney World plasters everywhere (and I mean everywhere!). You’ll find this disclaimer on the mobile ordering stickers, on the mobile order app at the very bottom, and on the allergy menus. They want you to understand that this menu is Friendly, but not officially an allergy free option.
Guests may consult with a chef or special diets trained Cast Member before placing an order. We Use Reasonable efforts in our sourcing, preparation and handling procedures to avoid the introduction of the named allergens into these menu choices. While we take steps to prevent cross-contact, we do not have separate allergy-friendly kitchen and are unable to guarantee that a menu-item is completely free of allergens. Allergy-friendly offerings are reliant on supplier ingredient labels. We cannot guarantee the accuracy of the contents of each food item. Allergy advisory statements (e.g. May Contain) are not regulated and therefore not taken into consideration when developing allergy-friendly meals. It is Ultimately our Guests’ discretion to make an informed choice based on their individual dietary needs. Guests may consult with a special diets trained Cast Member before placing an order.Disney World Allergy Disclaimer/ About our Food Allergy Process
The Second Disclaimer is on the Mobile Ordering App, under ” Special Dietary Needs & Food Allergy Requests” which says:
If you cannot find an allergy-friendly option that meets your needs or wish to talk to a chef or Special Diets Trained Cast Member, please order in person at the restaurant.Special Dietary Needs & Food Allergy Requests
The Disclaimer encourages anyone with a Food Restriction to talk to a trained Cast Member, like a Coordinator, Manager or Chef who can get clear information on ingredients and procedures.
Where can you Mobile Order with Food Allergies?
Not every location has a Food Allergy option when Mobile Ordering. The only locations that have the options are locations that have an active and available allergy menu (as some places can accommodate allergies without a menu).
For instance, Casey’s Corner in Magic Kingdom can accommodate many allergies, but doesn’t have allergy ordering for mobile.
So you can Mobile Order inside the four Main Theme Parks (Magic Kingdom, Animal Kingdom, Hollywood Studios, EPCOT) at many of the quick service locations. You cannot do mobile order inside the Parks at the Table Service Locations. You cannot do mobile ordering for third party locations.
This is different than the resorts, which have varied functionality with mobile ordering. Depending on the location, You can mobile order at many of the resorts for both Quick serve options and sometimes the Table Service options as well.
Exceptions to the Mobile Order for Allergies
I do encourage everyone to order prepackaged items, like the Brownies and Cookies through Mobile Ordering. If you have a shellfish allergy, mobile order where there is no shellfish present in the restaurant. Same with the several locations that are entirely peanut and treenut free.
How to Mobile Order with One Food Allergy or Gluten Free on the MyDisneyExperience App
The Food you get should have a sticker (or several) indicating it was an allergy order. The stickers are generally on the bag, and then also on the box. Most of the stickers on the bag have it sealed with a warning that it should not have been opened (see below)
Then the Allergy Stickers on the Box should have the allergens labeled.
I also get these allergen stickers even when I don’t mobile order, as it’s a handy way for the Cast Members to keep track of allergy items.
Can you talk to a Chef before, During or After the Mobile Order?
Yes! You can talk to a Chef, Manager, or Special Diets Trained Cast Member before using Mobile Ordering, During your Mobile Order, and After you’ve already ordered.
I’d recommend talking to them before you order, as sometimes allergy meals take longer to prepare. If you wait till the order is made to confirm allergens, but then the meal is not safe for you, you’ve added a lot of frustration and time to the meal.
How to Order with Two or more Allergies on the MyDisneyExperience App
You can successfully order with more than one Allergy on the app by talking to a Cast Member and letting them know the situation with the ordering options.
Because you can only order with one allergy, The Cast Members will get a Chef or Manager who can double check the items for you.
Then you’ll place an allergy order under just one allergen, with notes taken by the Manager or Chef that you have multiple allergens and what needs to get modified for your meal.
I’ve done this twice, both times at the takeaway mobile ordering option at a Table Service Restaurant. When the food came out, it had a Mobile Order Sticker, and all of the correct allergens were checked on the sticker.
How is Allergy Food Delivered with a Mobile Order?
This is different every time, and varies by location. Some locations I’ve tried have specific colored trays and allergy sticks, other locations have nothing different about the order from regular food. Likewise, most times it’s delivered by a Coordinator who can answer questions, other times it comes from a regular Cast Member who has to get someone for me to talk to.
Overall, Mobile Ordering is not made for Food Allergies
While this is a great addition for most folks, I would encourage anyone with a moderate or severe allergy to order in person to confirm allergens and needs!
Other Recommended Resources include:
Disney World Food Allergy FAQ post
Bringing Food into Disney World (like snacks!)