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Old 04-23-2013, 04:41 PM   #1
Join Date: Oct 2011
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DP or no DP??

I have priced out all of our ADR's and what we will spend on thosr meals paying out of pocket. I did not add dessert to every meal because we dont eat dessert every time. I also did not add refillable mugs. So for five days (2 kids, 2 adults) i figured out 650.00 OOP or 727 on DP. Should i just buy dining plan for ease, dessert, and mugs since it is only 75.00 more?? I am scared i have underestimated for OOP and end up spending more than the cost of dining plan. Thoughts anyone??
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Old 04-23-2013, 04:44 PM   #2
Join Date: Feb 2013
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Did you also take into consideration a snack per person per night when you did your calculations?

I just figured out what we are likely to spend in AK for 6 people OOP vs DP..
OOP would be about $255, DP cost for 1 day would be $175....so about $80 savings for that one day....
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Old 04-23-2013, 04:49 PM   #3
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We like the convenience of the plan but that's just us. Now are you thinking of getting the mugs if you are not on the plan or is it a waste of money to get them. In your OOP did you factor in a few snacks, drinks and the taxes. I know that my girls like their snacks and no way would they go without them nor without dessert and they add up fast. If you've factor everything in and you thing that your OOP is pretty much correct in the way of what people would order, then I would maybe skip it. Also when are you going? you might find out that you might heat less if you go in the summer months because of the heat or like us, our girls snack more because of the heat. Sorry I'm not much help.
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Old 04-23-2013, 04:53 PM   #4
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It depends on the ages of your kids and the places you decide to eat. If your kids are between the ages of 3-9. For my family DDP worked well for our trip in March, because we had quite a few character meals and the child's price of those meals were about the same as the child's price of the DDP. Having DDP also kept my DH from getting grumpy when the check was presented.

For some the DDP works well, for other people they would never use DDP and only pay OOP.
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Old 04-23-2013, 04:58 PM   #5
Join Date: Oct 2011
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I think my calculations are pretty accurate except for snacks. My children are 7 and 5, plus my husband and I. How much do you think we will spend on snacks per day. I do plan on carrying some healthier snacks with me.
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Old 04-23-2013, 05:15 PM   #6
Jonathan Swift
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Join Date: Apr 2013
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The dining plan is no more convenient that OOP. You still have to swipe your card to pay for something either way.

Which dining plan are you looking at? The standard one has one Table Service, one Counter Service and one snack per day per person. You're 4 people, so that's 4 snacks a day. If you're planning on bringing your own (or even if you don't) there is a fair chance you're going to have a surplus by the end of your stay and will have to scramble to use them up. Here's a thread on what can be purchased as a snack: http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=3039087 You will want to carry a copy of it if you decide to do the DDP just in case.

Did you make reservations to ensure you will be able to do all the TS and CS requirements of the trip on the DDP? Are any of the TS two points? Do you plan to eat all your desserts whether you want them or not? Are you aware that the mugs can't be used outside of your resort?
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Old 04-23-2013, 05:20 PM   #7
Join Date: Oct 2011
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Yes i have made ADR's for 1 table service every day. I know you can only use mugs at resort. The convenience is that my husbands head will not explode at the sight of the bill.
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Old 04-23-2013, 05:25 PM   #8
Jonathan Swift
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Just pencil in the price of the DDP next to the bill total for OOP and say, "See how much we WOULD have spent had I not been such a smart shopper?"
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Old 04-23-2013, 05:50 PM   #9
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With two kids and 1 TS per day, assuming some of those are character/buffet meals, you'll at least break even with the DDP and have the added bonus of snacks and desserts, and probably "save" some money on what you end up getting. And if DH is happy, that counts for a lot too.

By the way, we are an OOP family ourselves because I no longer have "Disney kids" and we don't eat the way the plan works.
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Old 04-23-2013, 05:53 PM   #10
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The bottom line for me is that I won't do the dining plan unless I calculate that it will save me money versus the next best alternative (e.g., OOP with TIW, etc.).

And I don't think having the plan is any more "convenient" than not having it. If anything, it's less convenient because of the restrictions involved.

Plus, if for example, someone in your party gets sick or otherwise loses their appetite, you throw away those unused credits (purchasing a dining plan is basically a gamble that no one in your party will get sick or otherwise lose their appetite).

Outside of potentially saving money, which is now only the case in increasingly limited circumstances (e.g., lots of character meals and other TS all you care to eat ADRs with kids under age 10), the only other real (albeit psycological) advantage to the dining plan is providing an "all-inclusive, paid up front feel."

But if a "paid up front feel" is that important to you and a dining plan will end up costing more than paying OOP, I'd suggest buying Disney gift cards and using these to pay for the meals (can even be used to pay for tips so you can concievably use these to pay more up front than with a dining plan).
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Old 04-23-2013, 06:13 PM   #11

Just picture everyone sitting at the computer in their underwear
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We like the Dining Plan for it's convenience, and the fact that we're big eaters sometimes I think we're the only one that Disney loses money on. When we were last there, in October 2011, we got it for free and were even more thrilled. It's a bit of a struggle to pay upfront when it isn't free, but I figure I'd have to bring so much more money with me to pay for meals (especially since we like to have a sit-down meal a day), I may as well go for it and not have to worry about anything else than tips.
Aww...no ticker for me.
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Old 04-23-2013, 09:53 PM   #12
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I think a large majority of people use the DDP for convenience mostly, but that convenience would be mighty costly for us. Actually, I really don't understand the convenience aspect of it - we've never been 'inconvenienced' by letting them swipe our room card

We also never get desserts (prefer to snack later when we can enjoy it more) nor do we drink sodas with our meals - would rather have water. Plus, tips are more, because you have to pay tipping on drinks and desserts, whether you want them or not.

We just got back from Disney and definitely saved by paying oop.

Also, free dining is not free. You must pay rack rates for the hotel, when usually you can get a % off discount.
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