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Old 02-12-2013, 11:19 AM   #31
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Originally Posted by glamdring269 View Post
TiW card?
A discount card you can buy if you are FL Resident, DVC or AP holder.

allearsnet.com explains here:


Oh and as for your other question, yes, you can still make ADRs 180 days out even if you're not on the DDP. Anyone can!
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Old 02-12-2013, 12:10 PM   #32
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Originally Posted by Arsenal1982 View Post
Maybe someone can persuade me but I just can't justify the fixed cost for the dining plan unless I'm missing something.

Basic Dining Plan = $56.00 per person

1 Lunch = $12.00 max

1 Dinner with Dessert = $40.00 (This is the absolute most that it would cost and a lot of nights won't approach this number.. example if I do the buffet at Biergarten.. or get a pizza at Via Napoli)

1 Snack = $3.00 to $4.00... again this is the high end of costs.. some snacks will be less but I won't ever spend more than $4.00 on a snack even though I know you can.. shake at Beaches and Cream for example.

So if I basically max out. max lunch, max dinner, max snack, it meets the dining plan expense. If I don't and its not reasonable to expect I would each night, then I'm better off just paying out of pocket.

I also investigated the deluxe dining plan which seems even more of a bad deal at $100 a night. That just doesn't make any sense to me... If I eat a lunch, 2 snacks, and do a signature dining out of my pocket, I will pay less than $100 guaranteed.
No, you're correct, financially it really isn't a good idea. The dining plan is really expensive and we would never normally spend that much money out of pocket. We usually go during free dining, so then we do it, but I completely agree that financially, if you're paying for it, in most circumstances, it really isn't the best choice. Having said that I do like the convenience of it and not having to think or care about the cost of the food we're eating, so I'm not really sure if I'd get it or only pay oop if we were ever on a trip that free dining wasn't an option. I know financially it would be "dumb" for us to buy the dining plan, but I do like having it.
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Old 02-12-2013, 01:01 PM   #33
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Our dining numbers

We just recently returned from a six night stay at WDW. We were there because our daughter had a gymnastics competition. We were going to buy the discounted hotel and tickets through Disney Sports, and then my travel agent advised me of the Stay Play and Dine offer. When I crunched the numbers, if I added the discounted price of the hotel Disney Sports was offering, and the discounted ticket prices and compared that to the SPD offer, the difference was around 21-22 dollars per person per day. So I took it that was the amount the QS-DP was costing us, for our particular situation. Because there was no price difference between children and adults, we listed our 7 year old as 10 so she could have better eating options. Only on a few occasions did we order off of the kids menu for her. Here are the numbers:

If we had paid for DDP with our daughter as a child 3-9 the cost would have been ~763.00

If we had paid for the DDP with our daughter as 10 or over the cost of the DDP would have been ~902.00

Amount of money the food we got with the DP would have cost us if we paid OOP, ~825.00

Amount of money from the package that paid for the dining part: ~528.00 (keep in mind this is in addition to discounted room and ticket prices.

And we ended up with a bunch of desserts and snacks (some we bought at the MS Confectionary to use up the credits) in our fridge at home, which we still have not finished eating.

So in our case, savings would have only come if our daughter had paid for the child plan, and in that case we would have been in trouble because of the limited options.

We shared meals, desserts and snacks, not to be cheap, but because we did not want to waste food! We all ate very well.

Unless its a special offer (like SPD or free dining) then we would not pay for the DDP. We would save money by going out of pocket, even more than I calculated here, because we would not have ordered all of those desserts!
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Old 02-17-2013, 02:33 PM   #34
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Originally Posted by sharonabe View Post
The dining plans don't work for us, but I'm not sure you've given it a fair calculation.

A QS entree is around $10, large soda is $3 and most desserts are $4, so you're lunch (if you eat everything you're entitled to) is more like $17 than $12.

Your TS at $40 is pretty close, although many places will be less. But if you can maximize most of your TS to the $40, you're at $57 with just TS and QS, so your snack is free and you also got the refillable mug for drinks at the resort or at least a souvenir.

You do have to use all your entitlements and you do have to do some homework to make sure you maximize your choices, but you can still save money on the DDP. A lot of people like it for the convenience factor and the "all-inclusive" prepaid feel.
This is really helpful. I have gone twice with Free Dining but with my upcoming trip, I'm leaning towards NOT getting the DDP.

I don't really drink soft drinks and neither does my SO. The kids sometimes do, sometimes don't. The QS desserts are worthless. I never ate them. And many QS meals work out at around $12 with tax. I normally get water when I eat out.

As for TS, I do like TS, but I also think that even with say, Biergarten at ~ $34 for an adult for dinner, 34 + 12 = 46. I don't think I'd come up with the other $11 in snacks. And many TS meals are less expensive and will come out to about $20-25 an entree (or less). If we get dessert at all, we are inclined to share. Again, we're not soft drink people.

I do think for kids there is value there. But again, it depends on how many character meals/buffets you do. The way I'm calculating it, for OUR eating styles as no soft drink maybe 2-3 shared desserts during the week, at best, DDP is a break even proposition. But more likely, we'll spend less on food going OOP.

ETA: After I posted, I did end up adding DDP to our reservation. For 2 adults and 2 Disney kids, DDP is $145.50 per day, which is actually my estimate of what we'd spend on food at WDW anyway. I figure that since it is break even, it's worth the peace of mind to have food mostly prepaid except for tips and alcohol.

Now a Mom of THREE Princesses.
DD (8) , DD (6) DD (3)

1989: Offsite
Nov 2009: 7 days at Coronado Springs
March 2011: 8 days at POFQ
May 2013: 7 days at Art of Animation (Lion King Suites)
Can't stay away! Heading back to WDW in February 2014: 6 days at Port Orleans Riverside

Last edited by MyTwoPrincesses; 02-18-2013 at 12:22 PM.
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