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Am I the only one who doesn't want FD?

Discussion in 'Disney Dining Plan' started by MacClemsons, Mar 7, 2013.

  1. LikeSeriously

    LikeSeriously Mouseketeer

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    Not everyone gets a Deluxe. Actually, most people who need a good discount go with a Mod or a Value. FD vs Room Discount for my family of three, 7 days I'm a Mod or Value... FD wins by hundreds of dollars.
     
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  3. TheDisney411

    TheDisney411 DIS Veteran

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    Amen!
     
  4. TheDisney411

    TheDisney411 DIS Veteran

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    Exactly. There are thousands of more moderate and value rooms than deluxe rooms. In most instances if you are staying at a value or a moderate, a free dining discount is going to save you a much more significant amount of money than a room only discount. A couple staying at a mod might come out about the same and if you are staying deluxe an all of your kids are 10+, free dining will still save you more money.

    We have a large family and have been going to Disney once or twice per year for the last 10 years and we have stayed at all levels of resort on property. The Polynesian will always be my favorite, but we just don't stay deluxe anymore. The prices are outrageous, even with a room discount, and our kids are old enough now that they want to be in the parks from open to close, so we just need a place to sleep and shower. We, generally, get 2 connecting rooms at a value now and try to travel during free dining weeks. We've been doing free dining since the fall of 2006. A room only discount saves us about $$320, total, off package rack rates for an 8 night stay. A free dining discount saves us about $1,550, total off package rack rates for an 8 night stay - even after paying the difference to upgrade from the quick service to the regular plan at a value during a free dining promo. Also we love the food and the character meals - it's part of the whole magical vacation for us and we have NEVER found it to be too much food, ever.

    So, free dining saves us over $1,200 more than a room only discount. So, it's a no brainer to go with the free dining discount.

    I will concede that free dining weeks are more crowded than they used to be, but really isn't that the point? Disney has found a way to fill their parks and resorts during previously "dead" weeks. Those Disney execs know this and they aren't going to shoot themselves in the foot, so to speak, by getting rid of free dining discounts anytime soon. And really, free dining weeks are still better than going during peak season and WAY cheaper.
     
  5. Tinkerpeas hubby

    Tinkerpeas hubby Mouseketeer

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    Well I know for a fact that I will be on my knees praying for free dining lol.

    We go for 3 wks at a time due to flight costs from the UK,we have 5 in our family but always take my mother in-law too so it makes 3 adults and 3 kids, my oldest on our last trip turned 10 so was on the adult plan! We upgraded our twin boys who are 7 to the adult plan also as we knew how much they hated the god awful kids nuggets and enjoy adult desserts,
    We managed to have the twins share at nearly every meal which meant plenty of TS credits left over to do either signatures or to get breakfast with!
    Now the 1st time we stayed on property with no DDP the boys was 1,1,3 and even then food cost us a fortune for what we wanted to eat " we enjoy as part of our holiday to sit down most days and have a good meal" the next trip we paid for the DDP and LOVED it!! No wondering if we should have the cheaper option at dinner, no having to choose how many restaurants we can afford to eat at, yes I know we might have paid the same OOP but we wouldn't have chosen the more expensive meals knowing it was coming out of our spends!!!
    The last 2 trips we have had free dining and it's been brilliant its saved us a fortune! Our boys still love character meals and those alone have rocketed in price, we enjoy not saying NO to them, my wife normally does not eat snacks but likes saving up the snack credits to bring home gifts from the sweet shops, our boys will have a few ice-creams or slush drinks throughout the trip but always choose to share since they are so big, they really enjoy buying lots of treats at the end I the trip to take home, in fact 5 months on and we still have loads of sweets left from our trip :)
    My wife has been going to Disney for over 20 years and still enjoys the restaurants as much today as she did back then! We also always go in September and yes it's got busier but I think that's because others have realised that September is a slower time others was bound to clock on at some point!
    We also as a family of 6 have been able to either book that morning or get a walk up many times still, so unless your very selective about where you want to eat there is always normally a restaurant you can get into without doing the 180 ADRs.

    So for us free dining is great! We rarely get room discounts in the UK, so it's dining or nothing.

    Free dining is FREE just because you could have gotten a better discount on the room does not mean that the free dining is not free!?!?!
     
  6. geckodani

    geckodani DIS Veteran

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    This. For us (2 adults, mod resort), FD works out to be the biggest discount. I'll take whatever I can get though!
     
  7. mickey2000

    mickey2000 Pin trader

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    Worked out my figures at POP for two of us.

    10 nights with water parks and hopper
    FREE DDP with upgraded regular dining

    $2428 total . Saved $628 with FD :cool1:

    Seems to be better than a 30% discount at a Deluxe buying DDP ! JMO

    Have been to Disney 300+ nights. As for mods & deluxe, been there, done that, NO more !! Only now need a room to sleep and shower :laughing:
     
  8. wyurm

    wyurm Mouseketeer

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    I have a reservation to be in Disney just after Thanksgiving. The last thing I would want to deal with is free dining so planning my vacation during a time that FD would be unlikely was a must. I feel it takes the fun out of dining when you have to fight crowds of people that would otherwise not be there. I like using the dining plan for its intended purpose: convenience not savings. To each their own though

    The DDP and FD is not likely responsible for the decline in food quality as much as the pressure on restaurants to keep prices from ballooning during a poor economy. Get rid of DDP (and FD) and the food quality would likely stay exactly the same or continue a downward slide. This is how it has been for most of the restaurants in out area since the recession started.
     
  9. LikeSeriously

    LikeSeriously Mouseketeer

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    Most people that I talk to who go different times of the year say that free dining "crowds" are nothing compared to the crowds during other times. The whole reason they offer free dining is because it's so slow during those times and even then, it doesn't fill the park like their busier days.

    And how do you know what the intended purpose of the dining plan is? I would assume it is for both convenience and savings.
     
  10. black562

    black562 DIS Veteran

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    I go the last few days of August-first week of September. Aside from Labor Day, the crowds are minimal, walk on most of the rides without a problem. I always use free dining and save way more than if I used the room discount. I've been going on free dining since it was first offered many years ago. It's definitely the slowest time of the year, and I can't imagine how much slower it would be with no discounts offered.
     
  11. Suzanne74

    Suzanne74 DIS Veteran

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    I think the point is the non sense of overfilled restaurants. I hate going when I can't get in one sit down meal unless I plan 6 months in advance. If there is no free dining, it is so much easier to get reservations at slow times
     
  12. fairy8i8

    fairy8i8 Spread the Magic!

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    UBS Investment Research tracks Disney Resort room occupancy and earnings. Disney consistently tries to stay above the 80% occupancy of its 21,000+ hotel rooms year round, so the on property crowds are pretty consistently high.

    Where you really see a difference in crowds is by having fewer off property guests flowing into the theme parks during the off season. It's Disney's job to create offers to entice people who would otherwise stay off property to spend the money on property. Free Dining might just entice a family considering staying at an off property resort to jump over to its more expensive counterpart on property. Room discounts for value resorts are a joke during the slow season. $100 for a tiny room? $80 with a discount? That same $80 could get a room twice the size at a real resort hotel off property in late August/September. I saw the Waldorf go for $120/night including tax last year when I was thinking of going. (Their price is more closely tied to their conference center schedule. It was that price for dates in July as well).
     
  13. bbagnall

    bbagnall Mouseketeer

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    Not a fan of free dining either, I thought I was the only one! Booking room only with a discount is the only way to go!
     
  14. bbagnall

    bbagnall Mouseketeer

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    Not a fan of free dining either, I thought I was the only one! Booking room only with a discount is the only way to go!
     

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