Breaking Down Disney Lingo

Disney New and Deals

Written by: Brittany Madden

One of the ways to become a “Disney-olic” like myself is by learning the lingo and acronyms that are used in both the parks and on Disney forums. Take for instance “Disney-olic”: this is a person who is obsessed with all things Disney, to the point it consumes their day-to-day life.  =D

For those who are not as familiar with Disney, you may find yourself confused when others speak you using Disney jargon. To help, below are explanations of some of the most commonly used Disney lingo heard/seen in the parks, forums, and blogs!

WDW – Walt Disney World Resort

  • If you do not know what Walt Disney World is, we have a bigger issue on our hands. Contact me ASAP! =P

DL – Disneyland

  • This acronym is used for the first Disney park, which is located in California.

Cast Member or CM – Employees at WDW/DL

  • Employees are referred to as “cast members” because of Disney’s main goal, which is to create an ongoing, ever changing production for its visitors. The employees help achieve this goal, thus they are essentials parts of Disney’s “cast.”  Pretty cool, huh!

Guests – Visitors at WDW/DL

  • Instead of simply calling WDW and DL attendees “visitors”, Disney employees refer to them as “guests”. This is because it helps to create and maintain this feeling of fantasy and theatrics for those who are vacationing on Disney properties.

DDT or DD – Downtown Disney

  • Both abbreviations are used when discussing either the Downtown areas in WDW or DL. DDT is an area devoted entirely to shops, restaurants, and entertainment.  It is open to both guests and non-guests and is suitable for all ages. (DDT is one of my favorite places to go while vacationing at WDW!)

MK – Magic Kingdom

  • MK stands for Magic Kingdom, which was the first park to be built in Walt Disney World. It is usually what first comes to people’s minds when they think “Disney.”

EP – Epcot

  • The second park addition to the “World” (which is what I sometimes refer WDW as) is commonly called EP. However, did you know that the word “Epcot” is also an acronym? Epcot stands for “Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow.” Wow, that’s a mouthful! =)

DHS – Disney’s Hollywood Studios

  • DHS is used when talking about WDW’s third park, Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

AK – Animal Kingdom

  • The newest WDW park is Animal Kingdom and is abbreviated simply as AK.


  • A Fastpass is voucher that allows guests wait in a shorter ride line by returning at a later, designated time. I will go more in to detail about Fastpasses in a future post. =)

ADR – Advance Dining Reservation

  • ADRs are what Disney calls dining reservations made at WDW and DL restaurants.

DDP – Disney Dining Plan

  • DDP stands for the Disney Dining Plan, which is available to all Disney resort guests. Basically, it is a “pre-paid” dining option that can be added onto a Disney vacation package and allows each guest a certain number of snacks and meals each day. There are five different DDP options, varying in prices per day. Often throughout the year, Disney will have “free dining” promotions, which give all guests staying at Disney resorts a DDP package for no additional cost.

Counter Service

  • Counter service is a term used for restaurants that you order at a counter and bring your food to a table. It is important to know this term when you are using the DDP. This is because there are a certain number of meal credits that can only be used only a counter service restaurants, depending on which DDP option you choose.

Table Service

  • This term is also important to know if you are using the DDP. As the name implies, a table service restaurant is one that you sit down at a table and a waiter/waitress serves you.

Even though there are MANY more Disney acronyms and slangs out there, hopefully these few explanations will help you while planning a Disney vacation!

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