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Old 07-08-2013, 09:23 PM   #1
TwistGrl101
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Just crunched the numbers...DDP

I just sat here and went through an entire 8 night trip of meals using the allears menus. The total cost of food for my family of 5+infant came out to $2200. This includes: Biergarten dinner, Ohana dinner, 2-Cape May breakfast, Tusker House lunch, Yachtsman dinner for DH and I, Akershus breakfast, Chefs lunch, Ohana breakfast, Crystal Palace lunch, Le Cellier dinner for DH and I, Cape May dinner, and 9 CS meals.
The DDP would cost us $1550 for 8 nights, and add an extra $630 for the leftover meals (paying YS, LC, Chefs, Ohana breakfast, and a CS) OOP. PLUS we would get 5 snacks a day (we don't use the mugs.)

When my kids are older and don't need to do the character meals, this would obviously be a whole other ball game. But for MY family, it works now.
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Old 07-08-2013, 09:53 PM   #2
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Glad you ran the numbers and it works for you. The mug does make a nice souvenir though so I think you can include the price in your savings. Also don't forget that you can get snacks that will travel home with you if you aren't hungry in the park.
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Old 07-09-2013, 08:24 AM   #3
Disneytwinsmom
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I did the same thing. For us, the DDP will save us money. We are doing alot of character dining, which can be expensive so it helps alot!
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Old 07-09-2013, 08:31 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TwistGrl101 View Post
I just sat here and went through an entire 8 night trip of meals using the allears menus. The total cost of food for my family of 5+infant came out to $2200. This includes: Biergarten dinner, Ohana dinner, 2-Cape May breakfast, Tusker House lunch, Yachtsman dinner for DH and I, Akershus breakfast, Chefs lunch, Ohana breakfast, Crystal Palace lunch, Le Cellier dinner for DH and I, Cape May dinner, and 9 CS meals.
The DDP would cost us $1550 for 8 nights, and add an extra $630 for the leftover meals (paying YS, LC, Chefs, Ohana breakfast, and a CS) OOP. PLUS we would get 5 snacks a day (we don't use the mugs.)

When my kids are older and don't need to do the character meals, this would obviously be a whole other ball game. But for MY family, it works now.
Glad the DDP works for you. Crunching the numbers is really the only way to tell whether the DDP or paying OOP is the best way to go for your family. The DDP doesn't work for everyone (but neither does paying OOP), but it does work and save money for some. Have a great trip .
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Old 07-09-2013, 12:04 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by mickeynut1 View Post

Glad the DDP works for you. Crunching the numbers is really the only way to tell whether the DDP or paying OOP is the best way to go for your family. The DDP doesn't work for everyone (but neither does paying OOP), but it does work and save money for some. Have a great trip .
Agreed! Different strokes for different folks. Running the numbers (pen and paper style) is always the best way IMO.
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Old 07-09-2013, 12:09 PM   #6
JimmyV
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TwistGrl101 View Post
The total cost of food for my family of 5+infant came out to $2200. ...The DDP would cost us $1550 for 8 nights, and add an extra $630 for the leftover meals .
Am I reading this right? OOP=$2200 and the DP=$2180?
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Old 07-09-2013, 12:15 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by JimmyV View Post
Am I reading this right? OOP=$2200 and the DP=$2180?
That's what it looks like. Though, if you add in the snacks, even averaging $2 per snack (which is pretty low), it comes out to a bit better of a difference ($100 total). (~$40 per $1 increase in snack average)
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Old 07-09-2013, 12:24 PM   #8
TwistGrl101
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JimmyV: the DDP will cost $1550 for my family for 8 nights

My total food expenses without DDP come to $2200

But when I add in the extra meals that we need to pay OOP for (LC, YS, Cape May breakfast, CS lunch) I'm looking at an extra $550.

So using DDP or paying OOP come to about the same cost:
OOP: $2200
DDP + extra OOP: about $2100 plus we get 5 snacks a day

I'm afraid that if we DON'T take the plan we'll be more susceptible to ordering extras that are not included on the plan.
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Old 07-09-2013, 01:05 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TwistGrl101 View Post
JimmyV: the DDP will cost $1550 for my family for 8 nights

My total food expenses without DDP come to $2200

But when I add in the extra meals that we need to pay OOP for (LC, YS, Cape May breakfast, CS lunch) I'm looking at an extra $550.

So using DDP or paying OOP come to about the same cost:
OOP: $2200
DDP + extra OOP: about $2100 plus we get 5 snacks a day

I'm afraid that if we DON'T take the plan we'll be more susceptible to ordering extras that are not included on the plan.
But what if someone doesn't want dessert right after their meal?
Isn't really hungry, and just wants soup/salad?
Gets sick and doesn't have an appetite?
Changes their mind and just wants the pasta instead of steak (even though you priced it out at home as if they were getting the steak)?
Or have an ADR and your group decides they want to go on more rides and just eat another QS that wasn't in your plans?

In those cases you are paying for food that might not get consumed, so wasting money. And now you are spending time on a vacation trying to figure out how to get you money's worth. And tracking credits.

Obviously your call-but there can be some unexpected drawbacks.
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Old 07-09-2013, 01:21 PM   #10
JimmyV
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TwistGrl101 View Post
JimmyV: the DDP will cost $1550 for my family for 8 nights

My total food expenses without DDP come to $2200

But when I add in the extra meals that we need to pay OOP for (LC, YS, Cape May breakfast, CS lunch) I'm looking at an extra $550.

So using DDP or paying OOP come to about the same cost:
OOP: $2200
DDP + extra OOP: about $2100 plus we get 5 snacks a day

I'm afraid that if we DON'T take the plan we'll be more susceptible to ordering extras that are not included on the plan.
As I have noted on other threads, Disney has this system down pretty well. They know peoples' collective eating habits and have managed to price the DP very close (and in your case, almost exactly even) to what one would pay OOP. After all, they aren't in the business of losing money.

While I can understand wanting to lock yourself in to the Plan to avoid the temptation of buying "extras", aren't those little extras and the sponteneity that they bring part of the fun of being on vacation? And as noted above, isn't it equally likley that over the course of a vactaion you simply run out of steam when it comes to food and you just want a salad? Or you go to a restaurant and see two appetizers that look better than anything on the entree section of the menu? Or you've had it up to here with cheesecake and you can't face another dessert? The reason I asked the question in the first place is that if the cost is so remarkably similar, why tie yourself down to a Plan instead of giving yourself the freedom to eat whatever you want, wherever you want, including some great places that don't take the Plan? Of course everyone has their own priorities, but I would trade culinary freedom for $100 in savings every time. I don't see how you would lose out by buying $2200 in Disney Gift Cards. If you stick to your current Plan, you break even. And if you end up not eating as much as you think you will, you will have $$$ left over, which is a whole lot better than having credits left over that have no currency.

Last edited by JimmyV; 07-09-2013 at 01:27 PM.
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Old 07-09-2013, 01:34 PM   #11
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I completely understand what you guys are saying, and we are not big dessert eaters, and we do love our apps...BUT we have mostly buffets if you look at my itinerary. That's really the reason I thought sticking to DDP would be best.
We sound like a bunch of fat slobs, but we are the complete opposite haha.
As far as CS goes though, we could all do without a dessert...
BTW this is my 2014 trip, so if DDP gets modified in any way my decision might change.
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Old 07-09-2013, 02:12 PM   #12
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If you are going to feel "locked" in by the plan. Then it is not a good choice for you and that is fine. I personally feel "freed" by the plan, because I know I can order what I want. I don't have to split a meal. I don't have to share a dessert. I don't have to compromise and get the chicken because it is cheaper than the beef.

Plenty of people can do this with a gift card or simply a budget. I cannot. If I put the same money on a gift card, I would feel "locked" into trying to keep cost down at meals, so that I could spend money on something else. I would try to share and compromise and be cheap. It is just who I am. I like all inclusive vacations because they give me a chance to be free and not worry about the money I am spending on food.

My point is, for every "con" to the dining plan there is also a "pro" for someone else. So there is no right or wrong answer. Try the dining plan. If you like it yay, if you don't, then don't get it next time. No shame either way.

I will say the snacks are super nice. I would never spend money on park snacks, but getting snack credits is awesome!!!
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Old 07-09-2013, 02:16 PM   #13
JimmyV
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Originally Posted by TwistGrl101 View Post
BUT we have mostly buffets if you look at my itinerary. That's really the reason I thought sticking to DDP would be best.
Very true. With buffets, there are no "sections" to the menu and nothing that the Plan does not include. There is no doubt that the Plan shines brightest when used for buffets.
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Old 07-09-2013, 02:24 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Kaykool101 View Post
I personally feel "freed" by the plan, because I know I can order what I want...except anything from the top third of the menu at a TS restaurant and anything from a restaurant that does not take the Plan. I don't have to compromise and get the chicken because it is cheaper than the beef. But I do have to compromise and skip the mussels listed in the appetizer section that look really good but get the carrot cake dessert that doesn't really excite me.
As you say, for every 'Pro", there is a "Con" and there is no right or wrong.
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Old 07-09-2013, 06:22 PM   #15
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The only possible problem I see with opting for the DDP is your QS credits. With all those buffets and TS meals, I'm wondering if you'll really want to eat a 3rd meal every day. I expect you'll have several QS meals left over which would then make OOP a better option.
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