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Old 10-01-2012, 05:05 PM   #46
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Originally Posted by Nancyg56 View Post
While I agree that there can be risks to the DDP you must admit that if one was concerned about that there would be no pre purchases made at Disney.

No Hard ticket events. No Hoop-de-Doo. No Cirque du Soleil.

Yes, you risk losing money if someone falls ill. But I am not going to let that prospect make me fail to buy Party tickets or book a tour. I refuse to worry about an illness making my DDP a loss. If I had a family member whose health was something I needed to factor into my trip decisions, well that is a different story. But that is not what you are talking about here, I think.
All I'm suggesting is that people realize their risks and that the risk for the DDP is likely the largest portion for many trips even more than the room or air for many families. That doesn't mean one has to avoid it or other prepaid items. However, the plan is locked in once you hit a certain timeframe which is frequently more restrictive than many of the other items you mention as well as often being a much larger $$$ amount than those others even in aggregate. It's also additive to all of the other risk. The DDP are specialty options that make sense for some and not for others. Shorter stays, kids 3-9, certain meal options increase the value and the reverse reduces or totally removes the $$$ value. My definitions of savings are compared to what you would have paid without the DDP and value is what you would like to order if you had the opportunity. Simply taking the cost of what you did order is not a true picture for most people and over estimates the real value of the DDP for many.
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Old 10-01-2012, 05:13 PM   #47
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My thought is I can't eat a full meal but enjoy the sit down restaurants, so getting the DDP works for us. Plus I will try something as price isn't an issue.

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Old 10-01-2012, 05:40 PM   #48
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Originally Posted by usd2bmd View Post
This I know is probably going to gain criticism, but for me the idea that I do not have to worry about budgeting for food while on vacation makes the plan worth it. Do we look at the menu and eat the most expensive items, no. But knowing it has all been paid for already and I only have to worry about money for souvenirs and tips makes it a win for us.

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My husband likes the Dining Plan for the same reason. It basically turns the vacation into an All-Inclusive trip.

I just wish we had more freedom. I don't want a table service every day, but with the Dining Plan, I feel like I'm not getting my money's worth if I'm not eating at the best places. I wish they'd triple my Amex Skymiles with every dollar spent.
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Old 10-01-2012, 09:47 PM   #49
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If you eat at a 2 credit and then a 1 credit, and then a snack daily, i cannot see how you wouldn't get your moneys worth, plus you wouldn't be piggin out.
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Old 10-02-2012, 06:36 AM   #50
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If you eat at a 2 credit and then a 1 credit, and then a snack daily, i cannot see how you wouldn't get your moneys worth, plus you wouldn't be piggin out.
There are many choices that would return less than what you paid in this scenario and many more that would still be more than you would have spent OOP. The Dlx plan is the easiest to show a return, it gets much more difficult with the basic plan and extremely difficult with the QS plan. And that assumes you use all the credits for real meals not just to get snacks to take home.
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Old 10-02-2012, 08:05 AM   #51
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If you eat at a 2 credit and then a 1 credit, and then a snack daily, i cannot see how you wouldn't get your moneys worth, plus you wouldn't be piggin out.
Yes, you can get your money's worth, but for my family it would still be pigging out. The only plan that let's you do what you suggest is the Deluxe plan. That means my family would have FOUR apps, FOUR entrees, and FOUR desserts on the table. That's way too much food and defines pigging out for me. We don't need and would not eat that much food. So paying OOP is still cheaper for us.
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Old 10-02-2012, 08:11 AM   #52
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Originally Posted by sharonabe

Yes, you can get your money's worth, but for my family it would still be pigging out. The only plan that let's you do what you suggest is the Deluxe plan. That means my family would have FOUR apps, FOUR entrees, and FOUR desserts on the table. That's way too much food and defines pigging out for me. We don't need and would not eat that much food. So paying OOP is still cheaper for us.
Lol maybe it is pigging out, I don't know. We gave up the clean plate club along time ago, so we may not finish everything. We also take our time at meals, hopefully we will not be rushed through the meals.

I was refering to DD, the other plans do seem a bit more expensive.
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Old 10-02-2012, 09:28 AM   #53
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Originally Posted by xipotec View Post
If you eat at a 2 credit and then a 1 credit, and then a snack daily, i cannot see how you wouldn't get your moneys worth, plus you wouldn't be piggin out.
It is actually pretty easy at current pricing.

An example (these are actual days out of my May plan, not something I threw together to make a point):

Lunch @ 50s Prime Time, 2 adults (myself and my 14yo bottomless pit)

$8.49 onion rings for two
$14.99 meatloaf
$16.99 fried chicken
$4.99 shake
$4.99 shake
$3.19 flavored Coke
$3.19 flavored Coke
$61.81 total DxDDP value

Dinner @ Flying Fish

$10 salad
$36 snapper
$9 boardwalk sweets dessert
$63 prix fixe menu
$3 Coke
$3 tea
$132.06 total DxDDP value

Snacks:
$5 bottled water (for two)
$4 carrot cake cookie to share

Total DxDDP value for the day - $202.87
Total DxDDP cost per night - $199.94

Another day:

Brown Derby lunch

$15 Cobb salad
$33 grouper
$3 tea
$11 prawns
$33 pork chop
$3 soda
$6 cobbler
$9 chocolate dessert
$120.34

Beaches & Cream dinner

$6.49 chili
$6.49 onion rings
$14.49 burger
$12.99 chicken Caesar salad
$3.19 flavored Coke
$3.19 flavored Coke
$6.49 strawberry shortcake
$8.49 no way jose sundae
$65.83

Snacks:
$5 bottled water (for two)
$4 cupcake from Starring Rolls
$4 cafe mocha

Total DxDDP value: $199.17

And these examples are ordering everything that the plan includes; real-world comparison would have us sharing one dessert or skipping it altogether at Brown Derby because nothing on the menu really sounds good, skipping the rather mundane appetizers at Beaches & Cream to leave room for dessert, and refilling our Brita bottles rather than wasting money on bottled water every day to beat the heat.

I have a spreadsheet where I run all the numbers for each trip, based on the "cast" of the trip, our ADR plans, likely menu choices at current pricing, etc. right down to including tax. I'd lose money on it if I used it solo or with my girls. I'd do little more than break even if traveling with DS. And none of the scenarios I've priced out at the 2013 rate offer enough savings to be worth pre-paying, because all are within the "margin of error" where a slight change of plans could easily put it in the realm of losing money on the plan.
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Old 10-02-2012, 10:05 AM   #54
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Colleen,

I really like your rundown. The numbers are what my family might do if we had TS each day. The fact is that it is too close to the actual cost and I only drink water. If you swapped 2 cokes for waters say at two meals, you could be under plan cost and you utilized the menu well!

I find that there are definitely two major groups of travelers -- those who enjoy a good table service meal to relax and enjoy their vacation, and folks like my family who cancel 4 of 5 ADR 's to go on more rides-we sometimes catch a great walkup TS when we have patience to sit still that long! It is interesting to note that among those who choose to do DPs, it is either for the convenience (which for me our KTTW supplies) or maximizing value-which can be fun! . And whatever the reason people do or don't DP, if it makes you happy.. . Of course now I'm starving and sitting at my (snack less) Chevy dealer getting work done on our Disney-Mobile so we are ready for January!
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Old 10-02-2012, 10:30 AM   #55
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Originally Posted by xipotec View Post
Lol maybe it is pigging out, I don't know. We gave up the clean plate club along time ago, so we may not finish everything. We also take our time at meals, hopefully we will not be rushed through the meals.

I was refering to DD, the other plans do seem a bit more expensive.
But you can't do a 2 credit, 1 credit, and a snack daily on the regular plan. You only get 1 TS credit a day. And with the regular DDP, you don't get the app, so your value for the money cost goes down.
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Old 10-02-2012, 11:16 AM   #56
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We are struggling with this decision as well. Our trip consists if 3 adults 2 kids and an under 3 toddler. So we have res at Kona Chef Mickey's Crystal Palace, Le Cellier and MM Rose all for dinners. We don't drink pop and don't usually have dessert so I'm thinking right there it won't make sense for us but then I try to factor in quick breakfasts using snack credits for us and the toddler. I have no idea and am driving myself crazy over this. Money is not an issue but I am frugal and want to make sure it makes sense! Any input just based on the details given?? Need to decide soon as Oct 10th is around the corner when our payment is due!
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Old 10-02-2012, 12:28 PM   #57
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But you can't do a 2 credit, 1 credit, and a snack daily on the regular plan. You only get 1 TS credit a day. And with the regular DDP, you don't get the app, so your value for the money cost goes down.
It's actually more difficult to realize a value from the basic plan than it is with the dlx plan. From an adult standpoint it takes some effort or at least certain choices to do so. The QS and snacks are often the make or break and the choice of both restaurants and meals have an impact. Other than certain meals, the 1 TS locations tend to give a better value than the signatures.
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Old 10-02-2012, 12:55 PM   #58
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We are struggling with this decision as well. Our trip consists if 3 adults 2 kids and an under 3 toddler. So we have res at Kona Chef Mickey's Crystal Palace, Le Cellier and MM Rose all for dinners. We don't drink pop and don't usually have dessert so I'm thinking right there it won't make sense for us but then I try to factor in quick breakfasts using snack credits for us and the toddler. I have no idea and am driving myself crazy over this. Money is not an issue but I am frugal and want to make sure it makes sense! Any input just based on the details given?? Need to decide soon as Oct 10th is around the corner when our payment is due!
Would you rather go on the Dining Plan, have to order as per the Dining Plan (meaning needing to order things to get value-steak vs chicken for example), pay for soda you won't drink and order, and eat dessert you probably wouldn't have otherwise? In that scenario you may some some money, but not defintitely.

Or the other option of eating and ordering what u want, having some flexibility, not paying for pop and dessert you don't want, not having Disney have your money months in advance, and you being in control of what you can order and eat? And possibly saving money at the same time?

I think you know the answer.
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Old 10-02-2012, 03:31 PM   #59
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Originally Posted by my2boyz View Post
We are struggling with this decision as well. Our trip consists if 3 adults 2 kids and an under 3 toddler. So we have res at Kona Chef Mickey's Crystal Palace, Le Cellier and MM Rose all for dinners. We don't drink pop and don't usually have dessert so I'm thinking right there it won't make sense for us but then I try to factor in quick breakfasts using snack credits for us and the toddler. I have no idea and am driving myself crazy over this. Money is not an issue but I am frugal and want to make sure it makes sense! Any input just based on the details given?? Need to decide soon as Oct 10th is around the corner when our payment is due!
I am one to say take the chance and do not go with the DDP. If you want convenience, charge using your KTTW card. I can say that not a single time would we have come out ahead with a purchased DDP. For us of course, your mileage may vary. But it won't vary that much. We'll be making our 5th trip in January, and we have always eaten whatever we wanted and whenever we wanted and still come in under the DDP cost for our family-- I add it all up after each trip, every single food/ice cream/beer. That includes 4 TS last trip-- none of them planned but none less than $120. We hit $990.36 for a 6 night stay. Included non-covered items such as tips, beers, appetizers (our preference over dessert) and souvenir popcorn buckets- 2. Our cost in 2012 for the 6 night DDP would have been $1236.96. That is not even Peak Price and we were there in peak dining season, leaving on February 26 so you would need to add another $48.

To be totally honest, I surprised my DH with front and center Luau tickets at just under $297 for 4 of us (on top of the 4 TS). This would blow our total up to $1287.36, and over the plan value by $38.36. Then again, that is STILL under the extra $48 that Peak Dining would have cost us. You can only get Category 3 seating at the Luau with TS credits and I wouldn't have used credits for it anyway. Really, even another $150 dinner would've kept us well under the DDP cost.

Again, just my experience, but it freed us up to order as we chose, not by what was covered. I know that many people here use it and love it. However, I could not foresee a world in which the DDP would work for us (personally) if we had to then walk... I feel if you are hesitant, try it without and see.
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Old 10-02-2012, 03:45 PM   #60
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For those still on the fence, any chance your visit could be during free dining? My upcoming trip I had agreed to pay for the Plan (2adults, lazy vaca mode). And I got a flyer from Disney for free dining during my trip.. Dont you think I was on the horn to my travel agent? This is the second time we have gotten free dining. and at normal times of the year never have done this in summer. Get playing on the actual DisVaca website. Get on their mailing list and cross your fingers.

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