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Old 01-19-2013, 02:28 PM   #31
Hardy
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The dining plan used to be a good value. You used to get appetizers and tip included, and it was quite a bit cheaper as prices have risen significantly. We stopped buying it after we did an experimental trip when we ordered and ate what we wanted oop and still came out way ahead. We still did ts and qs daily, but we really didn't all need our own dessert or even entree every lunch and dinner. It's just too much food. But also, sometimes we wanted an appetizer, or you find yourself ordering a different meal just bc it gives you more value....I think you will be just fine if you just hold the money that it would cost you, you will come out ahead and have extra in your pocket.

Also, we also had a trip where everyone got sick....we ended up wasting a lot of credits bc at least one of us was not eating at most meals. You are prepaying for meals when you might possibly skip for one reason or another. It is so hard to break even or come ahead, 1 table service credit can tip you to spending more.

However, if you or your party are the type where you stress every time you shell out 25/entree or 4/snack, it can be less stressful to just go ahead and prepay for the dining plan. We avoid the sticker shock by buying gift cards slowly and using those for a lot of meals and snacks. You can use them almost anywhere in the World. It's our way of doing a custom dining plan
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Old 01-19-2013, 02:39 PM   #32
debbie1996
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We ran the numbers on our trip and were very glad we didn't get a dining plan. A big part of that is our DD is 10 - and there is just no possible way she would be able to eat enough to justify the per day fee as an adult. My son probably could have broke even - as a hungry 9 year old - he has no problem putting the food down - BUT he sometimes orders off of the adult menu, so we would have had issues if we'd been on the plan as they don't let the kids order up.

We are not soda drinkers and are an occassional dessert sharing couple, so I think that's a big factor on why we'll never even break even - if you look at entree prices alone, you'd have to work really hard to not lose significantly on the plan.

At the end of the day, our family of 4 averaged about 75% of the cost of the standard dining plan per day. That's eating all meals on property, not bringing in any snacks and ordering whatever we wanted - and includes adult beverages. We ordered drinks at Ohana and glasses of wine at the Brown Derby which wouldn't have been included on plan.

BUT - we did no character meals - our kids weren't interested. I know that changes the numbers significantly.
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Old 01-19-2013, 02:39 PM   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dtstampz View Post
I hope it didn't sound like I was blaming the dining plan for being sick.
I just seem to have bad luck with colds at Disney--4 out of 6 trips. I had
every intention of getting my money's worth out of the dining plan, but
fate had other plans. I know the plan works great for some folks, and I'm
glad you've been able to use & enjoy it. Out of pocket seems to be the
best strategy for me.
That really is a bummer about being sick. Maybe it's the stress and excitement before you leave for your trip that is wearing your body down and making it susceptible while at WDW?

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Old 01-19-2013, 02:46 PM   #34
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We did it once, and used our credits in enough variety and different experiences to ensure we didn't have any left. It was another bit of "vacation management" that hampered (only slightly, but noticeably) our vacation enjoyment.

We'll do it all out of pocket next time.
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Old 01-19-2013, 02:49 PM   #35
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The good.....I don't get it. OOP and TiW here.
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Old 01-19-2013, 03:39 PM   #36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dtstampz View Post
And don't get *sick* while you are there.
I've used the dining plan twice, and both times came down
with a nasty cold and had NO appetite. A few CS credits wasted...
Won't be doing the dining plan again.
Quote:
Originally Posted by DisneyFive View Post
You can't blame that on the dining plan. We've spent 23 full days total in Disney the last three years, each day using the dining plan. For our group of 7 the first two years, and 5 the last year, that totals 145 quick service meals and 145 table service meals and none of us have gotten sick at WDW.

Dan
I don't think the PP was blaming getting sick on the dining plan. I think the point was if you get sick and lose your appetite, you don't get a refund for credits you intended to use but didn't because of your lack of appetite. In that case you would do better paying OOP because you didn't pre pay for meals you didn't eat.
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Old 01-19-2013, 04:15 PM   #37
pens4821
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We're looking to go the last week of August. Waiting to see if they offer free dining. For our family of 4 adults 1 child, getting the free dining would probably be better than getting the room discount. Just running quick figures, we'd have to spend about $20/adult/day (not including child) to make it worth it which should be pretty simple. However, if it isn't free, there's no way we're going to pay for it.

As a couple others have said, we may get an app here or there, but VERY rarely do we ever get dessert. My parents also always drink water. We'll just stop when we're hungry, and get what we want (not looking for something more expensive to make out on the deal) if free dining isn't offered.
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Old 01-19-2013, 04:51 PM   #38
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Disney used to stress you could save up to 30% and now it's up to 15%.
We would get it at first because with an appetizer and the gratuity included, it was a great deal. It cost about $37 for all of that. Now, the same plan (regular) is 50+ I think, and not worth it to us.
Unless you're big eaters, skip it. Unless you want to plan your trip around meals, skip it. Now with the FP+ and having to schedule rides, attractions, and meals, I'd also say skip it.
The last few times I got the DDP was because my daughter and her friends would go off on their own and I didn't have to worry about being around to pay for their meals. We always and I mean always had meals left and were rushing around the last day to buy snacks as a substitute which financially made no sense.
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Old 01-19-2013, 07:54 PM   #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stinky_Pete View Post
I don't think the PP was blaming getting sick on the dining plan. I think the point was if you get sick and lose your appetite, you don't get a refund for credits you intended to use but didn't because of your lack of appetite. In that case you would do better paying OOP because you didn't pre pay for meals you didn't eat.
Yeah, I misinterpreted the original post.

Agreed. We cleared it up a few posts ago.

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Old 01-20-2013, 12:15 AM   #40
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We love it, even if it is for nothing more than convenience. I like knowing that everything is taken care of once we get down there.
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Old 01-20-2013, 06:54 AM   #41
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We always enjoyed getting the free dining for the quick service. We enjoy the freedom of no ADRs although we usually make one per trip and it is just for me and DW - no kids. We really liked the two snacks per day, yummy!! But they did away with the second snack credit, DARN!!

The dining plans are only "worth it" to us if they are "free". You have to eat too much to make them worth paying for.
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Old 02-12-2013, 10:23 PM   #42
sheilamo
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Quote:
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Looks like were going to do 7-8 days in "July" ARRRRRRRR!!!!! were prob going to stay at DWL my question is if were going to spend all day at the parks is the meal plan good for this?? This is our first on site stay is DWL good for food and also if were going to close the park every evening will we be able to get food at the resort late? Would it be better just to wing it and pay as we go? I like the idea of having everything paid for but I know with the Summer heat H20 will be our main dish lol!!! Thanks!
There are a couple grocery delivery places also. We used We Go Shop and they were great. They go to whatever store you would like them to go to.
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Old 02-12-2013, 10:56 PM   #43
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Quote:
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We love it, even if it is for nothing more than convenience. I like knowing that everything is taken care of once we get down there.
Same here. It is so relaxing to me to not have sweat a little every time my credit card gets swiped! We always do character meals too - one of the best & lowest stress ways to meet characters - and I feel like after 1 or 2 of those the plan has paid for itself. I also like that you can use the credits as you like, for example if you want to do 2 QS one day and have 2 TS for the next - you can! I do wish tip was included. Tipping here at home is different than FL, but as long as you do a little research and bring some cash for tipping, you'll be good!
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Old 02-12-2013, 11:31 PM   #44
pens4821
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Just out of curiosity, anyone know the upgrade cost from the quick service meal to the one table service meal? Probably won't do it as we don't want to make reservations everyday, but do want to do a character dining or two.
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Old 02-12-2013, 11:50 PM   #45
conandrob240
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It has gotten so expensive that it is no longer worth it.
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