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Old 10-01-2012, 12:41 AM   #46
GreenCntryGirl
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LILJAN59 View Post
I agree. We had always bought the dining plan since the gold key card. It is now too pricey for us for 6 adults and 1 child. We are DVC members, and on our next visit, we will use annual passes and buy the Tables In Wonderland Card. We will use the card for one meal a day, and the rest of the time eat in our 2 BR at SSR. I can say, I think the dining plan would be better if they offered a salad or a sour OR a dessert. Most people I know would rather not have the dessert!!
I could save money by eating in the room even if it was only breakfast-y kinds of things. I've heard Garden Grocer is great. But I don't want to eat in my room. We had a condo bigger than my house in Panama City Beach and we still ate out while we were there.

Again, the entire thing is a matter of preference and what works for you.
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Old 10-01-2012, 07:13 AM   #47
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Originally Posted by Dwheels View Post
Yea def gonna have to agree to disagree but unless you are on the deluxe dining plan you couldn't do those restaurants like that all I one day. Well you could but you would end up running out it TS early. Idk still don't see how it can save you money maybe break even
It can and it does for some folks. It is not the no brainer bargain it used to be, not by a long shot, but there can be a savings, depending on how families dine.

I think that it is an option that works for some folks and does not help others. Like any offer, folks should research and choose what is best for their family.

I know that a lot of people believe that the DDP is the reason for what they consider to be a poorer dining experience. I am not so sure about that. I think that while the DDP makes a lovely scapegoat we have no way to know if the changes that have been made to the menus would have been made anyway. Disney has been trying to make changes that save money in a variety of ways. Disney Dining may have taken a hit even if the DDP was not in place.
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Old 10-01-2012, 07:41 AM   #48
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Originally Posted by Dwheels View Post
Yea def gonna have to agree to disagree but unless you are on the deluxe dining plan you couldn't do those restaurants like that all I one day. Well you could but you would end up running out it TS early. Idk still don't see how it can save you money maybe break even
For two trips we did a room only for a couple of nights before our pkg (DP) started. Well let me tell you, when i pay OOP, i spend a FORTUNE on food. (its just my DS12 & I at WDW). The DP does save me a ton of money. I dont know how ppl who pay OOP save money!!
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Old 10-01-2012, 07:49 AM   #49
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Originally Posted by Dwheels View Post
The dining plan is not a value by any means! Chances are you would save much more money by paying OOP. We went in August for 8 days we kept track of all our food expenses we spent $771 the dining plan would have cost us over $1100 we ate at all the TS we wanted to including flying fish. Dining plan def not worth the price unless it's free!
It depends on so many things... How many in your family, your dining habits, even the time of year you're traveling. Heat suppresses appetite for a lot of people, so what you'd want to eat in August probably isn't the same as what you'd have wanted if you'd visited in January.

Right now the DDP doesn't save my family money; we have an adult-aged child who doesn't eat adult portions, and a child-aged child who doesn't like kids' menus. But if I was just traveling with DH & DS, who will gladly eat every bite they're offered and order mainly seafood and steaks, it would still be a savings. I run the numbers almost compulsively when it comes to our vacations and have found that the "right" answer is different even from trip to trip.
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Old 10-01-2012, 12:16 PM   #50
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We are DVC members & AP holders, we are buying TiW for our trip next year in June 2013.

With the Dining Plan being raised to $55.59 per person ages 10 and up per night of our stay we are staying 12 nights $2668.32 for food. It is no longer a deal for US! Our children are 11 & 15, will be 11 & 16 at the time we go to Disney next year. Our DD 11 is a pickey eater. We often share CS meals & and eat breakfast at the DVC resort, then we all get a meal at TS location.

We also found that a lot of the foods we want to try are not on the dining plan. We want to try those foods w/o feeling like we should eat our credits off the dining plan first. We have often ended up with left over credits. We also do not get mugs anymore being DVC. We drive so we bring water bottles & Soda.

All of the above being said, we feel that TiW will be a better option for us. We have done a mini run through estimated extremely high for what we would normally eat. We have included tax, tip, TiW discount, snack money, some breakfast money, a meal at every CS location for everyone in our party, which I doubt we will eat and TS meal for everyone all included came out to the same price as the dining plan but it includes tip, a visit to Garden View Tea Room, & many foods we that are not included on the DDP. Honestly, we feel we will save money in the end, feel more satisfied with the food we eat, and enjoy our Disney eating experience more. We also felt obligated to eat all of our dining credits, we often found we were too full in the past. We are hoping to enjoy food more on our vacation because we will not be stuffed at TS meals and not feel like eating at all.

We have gotten the DDP for every trip. We are finding a new way of dining. I really feel that the DDP worked for us when our Kids were little and before we became DVC.

Now, the DDP will not work for us. TiW all the way

Edit: To answer your question: No, I do not feel that DDP is killing Disney.
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Old 10-01-2012, 07:01 PM   #51
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AlohaAnnie
We are DVC members & AP holders, we are buying TiW for our trip next year in June 2013.

With the Dining Plan being raised to $55.59 per person ages 10 and up per night of our stay we are staying 12 nights $2668.32 for food. It is no longer a deal for US! Our children are 11 & 15, will be 11 & 16 at the time we go to Disney next year. Our DD 11 is a pickey eater. We often share CS meals & and eat breakfast at the DVC resort, then we all get a meal at TS location.

We also found that a lot of the foods we want to try are not on the dining plan. We want to try those foods w/o feeling like we should eat our credits off the dining plan first. We have often ended up with left over credits. We also do not get mugs anymore being DVC. We drive so we bring water bottles & Soda.

All of the above being said, we feel that TiW will be a better option for us. We have done a mini run through estimated extremely high for what we would normally eat. We have included tax, tip, TiW discount, snack money, some breakfast money, a meal at every CS location for everyone in our party, which I doubt we will eat and TS meal for everyone all included came out to the same price as the dining plan but it includes tip, a visit to Garden View Tea Room, & many foods we that are not included on the DDP. Honestly, we feel we will save money in the end, feel more satisfied with the food we eat, and enjoy our Disney eating experience more. We also felt obligated to eat all of our dining credits, we often found we were too full in the past. We are hoping to enjoy food more on our vacation because we will not be stuffed at TS meals and not feel like eating at all.

We have gotten the DDP for every trip. We are finding a new way of dining. I really feel that the DDP worked for us when our Kids were little and before we became DVC.

Now, the DDP will not work for us. TiW all the way

Edit: To answer your question: No, I do not feel that DDP is killing Disney.
I have used the TIW card for years and I love it. I pay $75 as I have an AP and I save money every time. Don't forget they tax the total bill before the d/c but when they include the tip it's convenient. I am obsessed about figuring out what the real bill would have been with the tip I would have given and the answer always makes me smiles because I saved money. I believe you have made a very wise choice. remember it covers wine and beer as well. Enjoy your next visit !

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Old 10-01-2012, 09:15 PM   #52
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It definitely says money for some. It definitely doesn't for others. Kind of like most other things in life.

Someone a few pages back said the DDP does not include tax and gratuity. This is not entirely true. Tax IS included, gratuity is not.

We can all run numbers, but remember we are only running numbers for our own family. As I have said again and again on these constant threads regarding the demise of Disney via the DDP, it will not work for everyone! If it does not work for your family, by all means don't buy it, don't take it as your discount when its offered for "free", and be happy you did your research!

I keep seeing folks saying the TIW saves more, works better and is somehow superior (not all TIW holders who post, just some) to a Free Dining discount. To me that is simply crazy. One discount isn't "better" across the board, its just better for some.

We did the DDP in March and had great meals. We don't like to eat the same food night after night, I did my research and knew where to go to avoid that problem. Our upcoming trip is the same thing. We have a nice variety.

I do agree that signature meals are not a good use of credits on the DDP, although we usually do one per trip simply because our trips are 10-14 days and we like a day off from a full serve meal!

The character buffets are streamlined and always have been. They are geared towards young kids and therefore they offer the food to reflect that. That is not a DDP thing but rather just the way they are offering choices that appeal to the patrons eating there. Avoid more than one of those per trip (as long as you don't have young kids) and you'll be able to find plenty of variety.
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Old 10-01-2012, 09:34 PM   #53
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We don't use the dining plan, too much food and too much time. When looking at the cost, it is just not worht it. We stay CL and make the few ADRs we do want as soon as possible, leveraging the club for many snacks and meals. I'm sure the DP works for many and I am glad Disney provides so many options.
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Old 10-01-2012, 09:35 PM   #54
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I find the price quality ratio is now way out of line. So I just don't do as many TS meals. Disney doesn't seem to miss my money and I don't miss overpaying for subpar food so I guess it is a win win

I do rent a car and there are good options off property
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Old 10-01-2012, 09:57 PM   #55
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It also discourages non-dining plan people from making ADRs, which in turn leaves more availability for dining plan people.
I don't see the correlation here at all. If anything, people without the DP know that they will be competing for seats with people who have the plan and will make ADRs to avoid getting shut out.
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Before the Disney Dining Plan, you used to be able to decide that day where you wanted to eat. There was a board listing restaurant availability and a phone in Epcot that would link you with the dining reservations center. When EPCOT first opened, I remembered the restaurants were pretty packed and you had to make reservations on the earlier side. In the early 90's, however, when were would go monthly, we had no problem walking up to the restaurant and being walked in at sat down immediately.
I think that these changes have as much to do with the shift from a reservation system that accepted reservations 30 days out, then 60 days out, then 90 days out, then eventually 180 days out. The further out they push it, the more people will fill that void by making ADRs. When there was a 30 day system, people treated dining at WDW the same way they treated eating at home. Reservations would be made for some, but not all meals and spontaneity reigned. Now, people fear leaving home without every meal accounted for. The DP has some impact because people are forced to think about dining as part of their vacation and tend to overplan. With a shorter time frame, people would have a better idea what they are doing and where they are going, and double-booking and no-shows would decline.
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Old 10-01-2012, 10:40 PM   #56
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Originally Posted by OrangeCountyCommuter
I find the price quality ratio is now way out of line. So I just don't do as many TS meals. Disney doesn't seem to miss my money and I don't miss overpaying for subpar food so I guess it is a win win

I do rent a car and there are good options off property
I agree.
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Old 10-01-2012, 11:05 PM   #57
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The DP isn't worth it for us. My teens do not want to use hours of time for sit down meals (neither do I!) and my 14yo 5' tall 100 lbs soaking wet dd would never eat the amount of food they give you anyway. Plus, they are used to eating healthy and they get sick of the theme park food after a few days of wild snack-fest, LOL. We order groceries and bring food in instead. It's just easier for us as that way we can eat where/whenever we want, and it takes 15 minutes to eat lunch as opposed to an hour and a half. If we get an urge to eat a Disneyfied sit down meal, we do so, but I would not want to play the multiple ADR game.

On the flip side, I've been told by a couple friends that no way could they survive at Disney without the dining plan... so there ya go.
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Old 10-01-2012, 11:55 PM   #58
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We know that the DDP doesn't work for us. Done the math on a couple of different trips. We're fine with paying OOP for whatever we want. And I do know a couple of families who do benefit financially by using it.

What really irritates me (because it is SO fiscally irresponsible) are the people who can't be bothered to do the math but proclaim that it is just such a wonderfu deal because it's just so darn convenient. They pay for it and just make their ADRs (or not) and order whatever they want. Because it's SOOO much more convenient to tell the server that they are on the dining plan and then hand the server their KTTW card at the end of the meal. Yeah, right. It is soooo much less convenient when we tell our server that we're NOT on the dining plan and then hand the server our KTTW card to charge our meal to our room at the end of the meal.

I know it's a little thing, and it's none of my business whether or not someone chooses to use the DDP. But to use it for such a lame reason is just beyond my comprehension.
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Old 10-02-2012, 01:22 AM   #59
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We always go during free dining promotions. The DDP allows us to eat at many sit down meals I would not be able to afford otherwise. Yes I pay a little extra to get a MYW package, but the extra cost to get the package is worth all the free food for the week. Very worth it for us.

Reservations are harder to get because more guests, like my family, are enjoying meals they didn't try before. I don't mind planning ahead. It's an internet driven society anyway, so most people should be able to do their homework as well.
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Old 10-02-2012, 04:54 AM   #60
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What really irritates me (because it is SO fiscally irresponsible) are the people who can't be bothered to do the math but proclaim that it is just such a wonderfu deal because it's just so darn convenient. They pay for it and just make their ADRs (or not) and order whatever they want. Because it's SOOO much more convenient to tell the server that they are on the dining plan and then hand the server their KTTW card at the end of the meal. Yeah, right. It is soooo much less convenient when we tell our server that we're NOT on the dining plan and then hand the server our KTTW card to charge our meal to our room at the end of the meal.

I know it's a little thing, and it's none of my business whether or not someone chooses to use the DDP. But to use it for such a lame reason is just beyond my comprehension.
I think that you may want to consider that people vacation the way that they want to vacation. I know a lot of people who only stay at all-inclusive resorts because there are no worries once they step foot inside that door. For whatever personal reason they have, it is important to them to make sure that their vacation is totally paid for and they do not need to consider finances when it comes to food, alcohol, etc. It works for them. They know how much it costs and there is a value for them.

And then there are others who find an all-inclusive resort a total waste of money. They prefer to make their own purchases as they go. This way works for them.

What I do not understand is why some people are so offended by either decision a family makes. Vacation values are not all tangible. Club Level is not always a great financial value yet their clearly is a reason some choose that route. Some folks factor in what the cost is and then determine if they will eat and drink enough to "pay" for it. Others want the convenience that the IPO provides. Who is right? The people who run the numbers and decide their family will "pay for it" by eating and drinking enough in the lounge to cover teh additional cost, ot the family who may use the lounge and may "pay" for it or not with the offerings but really wanted the peace of mind knowing that the IPO will be there if they need them?


FWIW- I always break even on the DDP. actually I never have lost a dime but that is not the only reason I like it. My reasons are valid eve if you do not consider them to be financially sound. Sometimes we stay CL and the offerings have very little to do with why I make that decision. Again, I have my reasons for spending my money the way that works for me. My reasons, even if you don't know what they are, should not bother you or anyone else.

For many families a Disney vacation is a very special event. They have saved and saved and planned and planned. They do not want to look at entree prices and have those prices factor into their decision. They want to step back and let the kids all order their own desserts instead of sharing like they do at home. It may be too easy to fall back into those "when at home" habits and for this vacation they don't want to do that and for them this is the best way to go. Break even, lose a little, come out ahead? They are not paying for only the food. They are paying to enhance their vacation experience and that does have a value. I don't understand why some people refuse to respect that decision.
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