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Old 01-19-2013, 08:21 PM   #1
Earning My Ears
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Texas
Posts: 49

Dining plan yes or no?

I am taking my two kids, ages 6 and 2 to Disney in June. My mother might be joining us. Last time I took my daughter with her father and we did the Dining Plan and I enjoyed it because we could do the character meals which she loved. I am debating on whether I should do it this trip or not. I know I don't have to pay for my son since he is 2. Is it better to just pay OOP for everything an budget in a character meal or do the plan and do more than one character meal? We most likely will not be able to go to Disney again for a few years since I am a single mother and will be doing nursing school for the next couple of years, so I want to get the most for my money and them to experience as much as possible.
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Old 01-22-2013, 01:23 PM   #2
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Crunch the numbers. Go to allears.net. There you will find all of the menus for every restaurant in Disney, with prices. Based on your family's tastes, you can determine an approximate budget per day as well as identifying which places you may want to try to get an ADR for.
The compare to the DDP. It will cost you about $55.59 per adult per day, and $17.16 per child over 3 per day for the DDP.
I hope this helps!
Sept 2008- offsite, Sept 2010- Poly, Sept 2011- GF, Sept 2013-WL, Sept 2014- YC
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Old 01-29-2013, 04:55 PM   #3
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I would really look at what kind of vacation you want to have and what you can afford. For my family OOP would result in a lack of enjoyment because even if we set a budget or use a gift card we would be so focused on the dollar amount we would be constantly telling our kids no to snacks or our family of 8 will be splitting 3 meals and we are only eating once. You may think I am kidding, but you haven't met my husband. He is ok with paying once for the DDP, but not for every meal and snack.

You will get so many varying answers here, but look at the menus and decide how much DDP would cost you vs. OOP.

Happy planning
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Old 01-29-2013, 05:22 PM   #4
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Do you normally get dessert for every person at the table? If not, may be a waste of money for you. And don't forget you are responsible for the tip. So if you get hte most expensive meal on the menu, you should tip according to your actual bill. If there is a room discount offered, thast might save you more money. Only you know what you dining habits are and whether you want to spend 2-3hours in a restaurant each day.
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Old 01-30-2013, 10:21 AM   #5
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If you think your kids will enjoy a lot of character meals and/or buffets you'll probably want to do the DDP. They tend to be very highpriced and since they are only one price you can't get out cheaper by ordering something cheap on the menu.

But if you decide to not do any or just one, you might find it better to go without the DDP.

We did a lot of character meals and buffets on our first trip and have a long list of character meals for our November trip, because of that doing the DDP works for us. Once my kids get over 10, we'll probably not do the DDP because it costs so much to feed a kid on an adult credit when they'd never eat enough food to cover that cost.
Michelle (me) (DH) (DD8) (DD6)

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