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Old 09-28-2012, 03:06 AM   #1
jenniferyawn
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Which restaurants to use DDP and which to pay for...

Hi, everyone! No free dining when we go, so our dining plan options are limited. I have six table service ADR's and want to use all of them but only four TS meal credits. Can you help me decide which ones to use my own money and which to use the TS credits? Any advice is appreicated!!! We are a family of four... Here are our ADR's... Thanks for any help!!!

Chefs de France - lunch
Kona Cafe - breakfast
Donald's Safari - breakfast
Crystal Palace - breakfast
Hollywood and Vine - dinner
Rainforest Cafe - dinner
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Old 09-28-2012, 07:23 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jenniferyawn View Post
Hi, everyone! No free dining when we go, so our dining plan options are limited. I have six table service ADR's and want to use all of them but only four TS meal credits. Can you help me decide which ones to use my own money and which to use the TS credits? Any advice is appreicated!!! We are a family of four... Here are our ADR's... Thanks for any help!!!

Chefs de France - lunch
Kona Cafe - breakfast
Donald's Safari - breakfast
Crystal Palace - breakfast
Hollywood and Vine - dinner
Rainforest Cafe - dinner
Kona Cafe breakfast for sure. There's no way to make your DDP value there.

Then I'd probably split it and do one adult DDP and one adult OOP at Chefs and Rainforest. But even that depends on what you want to order. There is a prix fix at Chef's where you get all three courses, but it's not worth a DDP credit value wise.

For your kids, again Kona Cafe and then both OOP at Rainforest. The kids' meals there are cheaper than Chef's.
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Old 09-28-2012, 07:50 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jenniferyawn View Post
Hi, everyone! No free dining when we go, so our dining plan options are limited. I have six table service ADR's and want to use all of them but only four TS meal credits. Can you help me decide which ones to use my own money and which to use the TS credits? Any advice is appreicated!!! We are a family of four... Here are our ADR's... Thanks for any help!!!

Chefs de France - lunch
Kona Cafe - breakfast
Donald's Safari - breakfast
Crystal Palace - breakfast
Hollywood and Vine - dinner
Rainforest Cafe - dinner
Are you sure the Dining Plan makes sense for you?
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Old 09-29-2012, 05:24 AM   #4
jenniferyawn
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Uh-oh..do you think it might not make sense for us? We've always gotten the dining plan for the convenience of it. The kids are 11 and 13 now so I am paying for four adult ddps... crazy!
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Old 09-29-2012, 08:15 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by jenniferyawn View Post
Uh-oh..do you think it might not make sense for us? We've always gotten the dining plan for the convenience of it. The kids are 11 and 13 now so I am paying for four adult ddps... crazy!
Well, just looking at your buffet meals...they are $25-31. So on those days, your QS and snack need to total $25-30 just to break even. It will be very difficult to do that when most QS entrees are still $10 or under and desserts/drinks are around $3 each. When you do the a la carte meals, if your total is $35-40 (ordering the higher priced entrees), then you're more in line with the amount you will spend at QS and snack to see some savings.

I would go look at the menus and see what you're likely to order. Once kids become Disney adults, the DDP does begin to lose some monetary value. It may still be worth the convenience value to you, though.
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Old 09-30-2012, 09:17 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jenniferyawn View Post
Hi, everyone! No free dining when we go, so our dining plan options are limited. I have six table service ADR's and want to use all of them but only four TS meal credits. Can you help me decide which ones to use my own money and which to use the TS credits? Any advice is appreicated!!! We are a family of four... Here are our ADR's... Thanks for any help!!!

Chefs de France - lunch
Kona Cafe - breakfast
Donald's Safari - breakfast
Crystal Palace - breakfast
Hollywood and Vine - dinner
Rainforest Cafe - dinner
I'd look through the menu's and guestimate what you'd be likely to order. Depending on your choices, the TS portion of all of those could yield a good value but you'll still need to consider the value of the CS and snack options to get a real value from it. I assume you're there 4 nights. Depending on your reservation times, arrival time and departure time, will you be able to effectively use all CS and snack credits? If not, you may want to reconsider the plan. You'll likely have large meals for the buffet's so you may not want 3 full meals those days. Do you have a Landry's Select Card? I'm assuming you know there are no character's for dinner at H & V. Will the kids eat adult or kids meals normally at the non buffet places? If one or both gravitate to kids meals, you also may want to reconsider or use those credits yourself to cover all meals otherwise.

Assuming the plan still makes sense for you after you look at these variables and considering the costs of the individual meals, here are 2 variations for your consideration, they are not exclusive of each other. At the non buffet places you might consider ordering kids meals for the tweens depending on their usual appetites and preferences. You might also consider paying OOP for the cheaper meals and using the DP for the more expensive ones and using less total credits at the non buffet meals. Sharing a meal, paying OOP for cheaper meals, getting an appy as an appetizer OOP are all ways to save money, eat less and stretch the DDP so you have desert and beverage choices at every applicable meal but less total numbers.

Most families with a similar makeup would likely be a wash up to show a mild savings in this situation assuming you'd use all the credits. Remember you'll have 18-20% tip on the full value of what you end up ordering. That difference alone between kids and adult meals is not insignificant. Also, don't forget that DVC and the AP have discounts at some of your options, mostly 10%.
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