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Old 11-20-2010, 03:28 PM   #1
DadwhoLOVESDisney
Earning My Ears
 
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A Tale of Two Dads: 1 on a frugal budget and 1 on the DDP**COMPLETE 12/18/10**

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.

Okay, so more seriously. The same dad was “frugal dad” for three days, then changed to five days of “buy whatever you want from the menu (as long as it’s on the meal plan).” A snack? You bet. Dessert. No problem!

The back story: our family of 5 (dad, mom & three kids: 12, 10, and 2) are spending 8 days at the World. The first 3 days we stayed offsite at the Blue Tree Resort and then we spent 5 days at Animal Kingdom Lodge. While we’ve been to Disney 4 times with the family, this was our first time to sign up for the DDP.

I’ve always wanted to do the DDP, but felt that it was too expensive. Not sure how I did it, but I convinced my wife that this was the year to try it out (partially because our 2 year old is free). And, if we had spent all 8 days onsite, there’s no way that I could justify the cost to myself. But with a split trip, this seemed like the year to try out the dining plan.

I thought I’d offer a trip report where I compare the out-of-pocket (OOP) plan with the DDP.

Schedule Overview:

Out of Pocket: No dining plan – 3 full days
• Wednesday: arrival day
• Thursday: Blizzard Beach Water Park
• Friday: Magic Kingdom Day #1
• Saturday: Magic Kingdom Day #2

Disney Dining Plan – 5 full days
• Sunday: Move In Day to Animal Kingdom Lodge and Boma’s
• Monday: Daughter’s B-day and 1900 Park Fare
• Tuesday: Hang out and use 2 extra TS credits at Kona’s
• Wednesday: EPCOT! And Teppan Edo
• Thursday: Disney Studios – no table service
• Friday: hang out and go to early Hoop De Revue (6 credits total – spouse not going) and late departure for Houston

And, after reading many, many postings about the best way to use the DDP (thank you, thank you – extremely helpful in making our decisions), I hope that my post doesn’t start any arguments. I’m not trying to convince people that there’s one best option. Just comparing our experiences for others to consider as they make their decisions.

Last edited by DadwhoLOVESDisney; 12-18-2010 at 10:36 AM.
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Old 11-20-2010, 03:31 PM   #2
DadwhoLOVESDisney
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Wednesday -- Arrival Day; and Thursday -- Blizzard Beach

Wednesday – Arrival Day

After we had dinner on the road from Texas ($28), we moved into our 1 bedroom condo. We made a grocery store run to pick up milk, fruit, cereal, bagels, water and soft drinks. Cost $50

Total OOP Cost $78

Thursday: Blizzard Beach

We got up and had breakfast in the room. Headed for Blizzard Beach. Packed in a few snacks and some bottled water. Frugal dad purchased a refillable mug for $10 (went up in price from previous years – and got a lot smaller too).

For lunch we bought lunches at main dining area at Blizzard Beach:
Adults: we split a salad and a chicken wrap. Oldest daughter went for chili dog & fries. Youngest kids ordered kids meal hot dogs. No drinks since we had bottled water and a refillable mug. Total cost $37.55

Afternoon snack:

Pail of ice cream – split 4 ways. Son doesn’t really eat ice cream. More for the rest of us Cost $10


Totally forgot about taking pictures when I saw that huge bowl of ice cream. Here’s what it looks like after it was demolished : ) Unfortunately, our stomachs often got in the way of taking good pictures throughout the trip...sorry about that!

Dinner:
Frugal dad figured out a way to sound hungry and our very good friends invited us to their condo for homemade lasagna, bread, and bottled water. Yum! Cost: 20 minute drive and 2 hours of fun with friends!

Total OOP Cost for Thursday: $59

Last edited by DadwhoLOVESDisney; 11-22-2010 at 11:33 PM.
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Old 11-20-2010, 04:52 PM   #3
ibcindyb
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I'm in sounds like fun!
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Old 11-20-2010, 05:20 PM   #4
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Im in Sounds like fun to compare both OOP and DDP for the same family
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Old 11-20-2010, 07:06 PM   #5
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I'm on board..want to hear more!
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Old 11-20-2010, 07:12 PM   #6
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oh yes! can not wait to hear more as i am debating now whether to do dinning plan or not to do it for our party of 3!
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Old 11-21-2010, 01:57 PM   #7
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I'm in
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Old 11-21-2010, 04:34 PM   #8
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count me in...
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Old 11-21-2010, 06:31 PM   #9
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Old 11-21-2010, 08:58 PM   #10
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Can't wait to read more! If your from Houston, you are super close to me lol.
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Old 11-21-2010, 10:45 PM   #11
DadwhoLOVESDisney
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Sorry for the slowness in responding. I wrote out my report in MSWord and inserted the pictures, but when I post the it on the website, the pictures don't automatically insert. So I'm still figuring that part out. If anyone has great suggestions, feel free to send me a PM. Hopefully by tomorrow night I'll have it all worked out.

Thanks!

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Old 11-21-2010, 11:50 PM   #12
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We need to hear the rest.. Whenever you are ready
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Old 11-22-2010, 12:49 AM   #13
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Old 11-22-2010, 11:37 PM   #14
DadwhoLOVESDisney
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[[/quote]

Quote:
Originally Posted by ibcindyb View Post
i'm in sounds like fun!
Quote:
Originally Posted by 4hppycamprs View Post
im in sounds like fun to compare both oop and ddp for the same family
Quote:
Originally Posted by kris-co View Post
i'm on board..want to hear more!
Quote:
Originally Posted by axelrodb1 View Post
oh yes! Can not wait to hear more as i am debating now whether to do dinning plan or not to do it for our party of 3!
Quote:
Originally Posted by kayrosek View Post
i'm in
Quote:
Originally Posted by pooh&ourhunny View Post
count me in...
Quote:
Originally Posted by nessz79 View Post
i'm in!
Quote:
Originally Posted by *sarah* View Post
Can't wait to read more! If your from houston, you are super close to me lol.
Quote:
Originally Posted by corkery719 View Post
we need to hear the rest.. Whenever you are ready
Quote:
Originally Posted by trublu View Post
i'm in!
Thanks for the positive words -- I'm making progress. Finally was able to insert my first picture. Stay tuned.
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Old 11-23-2010, 01:39 AM   #15
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Smile

So far so good. Looking forward to the rest of your report.
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