View Full Version : Dining Plan or Not?

05-28-2007, 12:36 PM
We will be going to Disney for the first time June 10-15. It will be dh, dd (7 yrs. old) and myself. I did not purchase the dining plan when we made reservations. Now, I am doubting wheter or not I should purchase it. Is it to late to purchase plan? and is it worth getting? I do have ADR's made. Any help on this would be appreciated.:goodvibes


05-28-2007, 01:17 PM
If you have an average of one TS meal ADR per day of your trip, it's almost always less expensive to do the dining plan. Plus, you'll end up being able to try lots of different things (including appetizers and desserts) without worrying about the cost.

If you have a package reservation (room + tickets), you still have time to add it to your reservation. With the size of your party and the age of your child, I would definitely do it. It will really kick your vacation up a notch.

I would also suggest perusing the DDP FAQ stickies at the top of this forum. It will give you a lot more detailed tips and hints than I can.

Welcome to the DIS! Have a great trip!

05-28-2007, 01:31 PM
Thanks so much.:thumbsup2

05-28-2007, 01:42 PM
Just made plans for our next trip and went with the meal plan this go around.
Was just checking in to see what others thought of it.
Looks like it is a good thing...thanks.


Tina G
05-29-2007, 09:50 PM
I think it all depends on where you want to eat and what kind of eaters you are. My family is exactly the same as yours - DH, me, and DD age 7. We just returned from an 8-day trip to Disney. We did not get the dining plan and I kept going back and forth about it until we got there. We are not big eaters. We rarely order appetizers or desserts. When we order from the menu at TS restaurants, we usually end up ordering the less expensive choices (not on purpose but I don't eat seafood and mainly order the chicken or pasta dishes which are cheaper). We prefer to eat at more TS restaurants than CS.

I took our receipts and calculated our costs to see what we would have saved with the DDP. We would have paid $625 for the DDP for the three of us and for the same meals we paid about $615 out of pocket. Plus we would have had to give up 2 of our TS meals and do CS instead or we would have wasted CS credits and we would have had to change two of our ADRs since we ate at 2 places that were not on the DDP. So for us, the plan would not have been a money saver. But for many families, it is. Just don't assume it will be. Look at how your family eats and how flexible you are willing to be with where you eat and go from there.

05-29-2007, 10:12 PM
Thanks so much for the replies. I keep going back and forth whether to get the plan or not. We are not big eaters also. We never order dessert when we do go out to eat. My daughter is a very picky eater. So, I am really wondering whether it will be to our advantage to purchase the plan. Thanks again.

05-29-2007, 10:19 PM
We just got back from a week in the world, with the dining plan. It's our second time using it (first time paying for it!). We are a family of 4....with 12 and 8 year old boys. My mom also came with us.

We loved the DP the first go-round, but after using it this trip, we said we probably won't do it again. We just felt too tied down to sit down meals this time. I love doing some sit-downs, but I really could have done without one every single day. We also could do without the appetizers and the desserts at TS meals. We felt uncomfortably full all the time.

Next trip, both of our kids will be "Disney Adults", so the plan will cost us that much more. Another reason to skip the plan. The meals are big enough that they'll be able to share, and honestly, we're almost out of the character meal phase, so I doubt we'll be doing more than one buffet.

I guess I should add that we've been to Disney 7 times, so we've BTDT with a lot of the restaurants. There are some that we love, but others that we have no need to do again, at least for a while.

Good luck deciding!


05-29-2007, 10:33 PM
Tough and very subjective call for ya, pal! We love the plan and utilize it to the max. But since y'all aren't dessert eaters, and you've got a picky one in tow, I'd lean a bit toward NOT using the plan. All your ADRs are already made, and that's a plus. I'd check the menus for the restaurants you've chosen, role play what you'd order, and then simply crunch numbers ... is what you think you'd order going to cause you to at least break even when comparing out of pocket to the plan?

For us, we just kinda liked paying in advance and not having to budget for meals once there, and if someone wanted the most expensive entree on the menu, no big deal.

05-29-2007, 11:22 PM
We just got back from a trip with the DDP - myself, DH, DS4 and DD2. We LOVED the plan. I agree with the previous post - The best part to us was it was all prepaid - we didn't have to look at the menu and feel guilty about the price. We didn't have to worry about breaking our budget on food. Much more relaxing that way.

05-30-2007, 10:27 AM
as you're crunching numbers, just remember that the DDP INCLUDES tax & tip (oft overlooked in calculations).
we get it (2 adults, DVC) *** we like many TS places (spoodles, WPC, boma). we might not eat appy's and/or desserts, but we still wind up paying less using the DDP (once CS & a snack is figured in, it's even a greater savings).
we enjoy easy-going, hassle-free vacations ~ DDP helps with that :)

05-30-2007, 07:59 PM
Thanks so much for the great replies. I've done the number crunching and it comes out awfully close. Dh wants to do DDP for the conveinance factor. I just worry that it will be too much food. Thanks again everyone.:)


05-30-2007, 08:21 PM
It is a lot of food. But it's vacation, and you don't have to order or finish everything. I'd much rather have too much food prepaid at a discount than feel like we should order less, or less expensive, items because the food is costing more than expected.

Really, the big test is whether you're comfortable with an average of one TS and one CS per day. If yes, you'll almost always save money with the DDP, even if you don't always get the appetizers and/or desserts. And you'll have the added benefits of having everything prepaid, and feeling like you're on a deluxe vacation.

Good luck deciding!