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Old 02-21-2013, 01:45 PM   #1
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Dining plan with two kids??

Keep reading reviews stating OOP is the way to go. I have two children and i dont think i ciuld feed them in Disney for less than the dining plan price. Especiallywith character meals. Am i missing something?? Kids ages 7 and 5
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Old 02-21-2013, 02:01 PM   #2
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The DDP worked for us when DS was under 10 but now that he is a "disney adult," not so much. It's great if you are doing lots of character meals and buffets.
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Old 02-21-2013, 02:16 PM   #3
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My daughter and son in law, with two children aged 3 and 5, saved money on the dining plan. They did two character buffets, two all you can eat meals, one non-character dinner buffet, and one "order off the menu" restaurant. The price of the dinner buffets for the kids was more than a whole day for the kids dining plan. So they definitely saved money with that. But you have to plan your restaurants carefully to get the best value.
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Old 02-21-2013, 02:38 PM   #4
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If your children are under 10 and you are planning to eat at character buffets and AYCE places than the DDP is less expensive that OOP.
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Old 02-21-2013, 03:01 PM   #5
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One of the few groups that can still save considerably on the dining plan (without working much at it) are families with children under 10 who intend to do a lot of buffets, all you can eat family style or fixed price restaurants (all character meals fit this model).
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Old 02-21-2013, 03:31 PM   #6
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You can definintely save money on the DDP with 2 kids under 10, especially if you are doing a lot of buffets/one price meals.

This will be our last time doing it (unless it's part of package deal). My oldest will be 9 when we go this time.

A Character Buffet can run approxmiately $20 for a kid for dinner. You are paying $17.16 for the child's day of credits, you get a snack (apprx $4 and a CS lunch approx $8-10).

It is much harder to find value with an adult's only plan, it is still doable.
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Old 02-21-2013, 04:42 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by charminnie View Post
Keep reading reviews stating OOP is the way to go. I have two children and i dont think i ciuld feed them in Disney for less than the dining plan price. Especiallywith character meals. Am i missing something?? Kids ages 7 and 5
We go to WDW frequently. Unless the dining plan is free we always save money eating OOP. We don't eat more than 2 or 3character meals though. Check out the menus on allears.net as to how much you would eat. We usually eat breakfast in the room as we are not big breakfast eaters.

A typical day at MK would go like this:

Lunch: Columbia Harbour House
Anchors Away Sandwich $9
Grilled Salmon $11
Kids tuna sandwich $6
Kids chicken sandwich $6
tap water to drink
TOTAL: $32 plus tax

Dinner at Cosmic Ray's
1/2 rotisserie chicken $10 (x2)
2 kids meals $6 (x2)
Tap water to drink
Total: $32

3 snacks at $4 $12

Day total: $76

The Quick Service dining plan is $38 per adult and $14 per child so would be $104 so this day it was $28 cheaper. Multiply that by 7 nights and you have almost $200.

We used to go to main street bakery and get 2 cinnamon rolls at $4 a piece and 2 fruit cups to split so breakfast was only about $14.

Every family is different though. Hope this helps.
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Old 02-21-2013, 06:55 PM   #8
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We are doing the DDP but this will be our last time. No question that money can be saved paying OOP and no question that it can be used to "save" money too. It all depends on what you want to pay. I figured for us and what we want to do, it will make us break even but now I don't have to worry about telling the kids that they cannot have dessert. We will do character meals that we normally wouldn't do and things like that. The best deals if you have kids under 10 are the buffets and the character meals. You can play around with the credits and really stretch things out as well. We plan on eating cereal that we brought in room and eating a ts each day except for one day we will do two cs and another day do a ts but snacks/packed sandwiches instead of a cs. That way we can stretch our 7 nights into 8 days of eating on the ddp. Make sense?
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Old 02-22-2013, 03:37 PM   #9
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I don't think you are missing anything, if you are doing a lot of character meals you cannot feed them for less OOP.

We are doing DDP, for our trip next month, the main reason are the character meals we are doing, I could not feed my kids for less. I have 2 "Disney adults" (DS 15, DS 13) and 3 kids (DD 9, DS7, & DS4) and DD2. We looked at the numbers and we would not do any of the character meals if we were paying OOP.

Even with the older 2 being adults, the price of the kid's plan makes the DDP the best choice for my family.
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Old 02-22-2013, 04:22 PM   #10
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We have 2 kids (5 and 7) and we do a lot of character meals. We save money with the DDP. I've done the calculations over and over and if we do all of the character meals and buffets that we want, we will save at least $250 with the DDP.
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Old 02-22-2013, 04:29 PM   #11
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We didn't do the dining plan for our recent trip and we spent $780 on food for the 8 days.
We didn't do character meals or buffets, but did have 5 TS meals. Our boys shared adult meals most evenings (except Raglan Road and Bubba Gump & City walk). The child's menu just doesn't suit our needs and it actually turned out cheaper for us - which was a big surprise because we didn't cutback on anything and the kids still had their snack every day!
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Old 02-23-2013, 10:23 AM   #12
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With 5 year old DD and 3 year old DS and a character meal at least once per day, the DDP saves us a lot of money every trip. The last 2 trips we had free dining. We paid for DDP this upcoming trip, and based on our ADRs, we'll still save over $250.
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Old 02-23-2013, 10:32 PM   #13
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Our DD is 4, we did a lot of character meals and signature meals and we definitely saved money (over $300) using the DxDP. If we had done CS and fewer character meals we could have saved more money OOP, it all depends on where you are eating.
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Old 02-23-2013, 10:42 PM   #14
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This is a neat spreadsheet that I found a few weeks ago here on the dis.

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Old 02-24-2013, 03:32 PM   #15
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With kids those ages, DDP is a better deal. I've gone back and forth on the calculations and for kids 9 and under DDP is likely a good deal IF you plan to do at least one character meal and one other higher priced meal and you already intend to do TS every day. There was a spreadsheet posted on here and I played with MANY configurations and all of them - even with me and SO getting water at every meal and no desert - had my coming out slightly ahead with DDP. Even when I cut out one TS, the OOP cost was still within $50 of DDP. Might as well do the extra TS, no? It really depends though on the specific places you choose, mainly because the kids are a good deal, it kind of subsidizes the high prices for adults.

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