Average savings from disney dining plan

Discussion in 'Disney Dining Plan' started by lkool, Dec 30, 2013.

  1. morethananyonex

    morethananyonex DIS Veteran

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    I addressed those points in my post, I'll say it again.

    We wouldn't get QS desserts, however if you subtract the cost of them, we still come out ahead, but closer to $50. Like I said, I addressed that.

    We don't have higher gratuities. Ours are the exact same they would be. We don't order desserts, BUT out of 10 TS meals we are only eating at 1 that has a separate dessert and isn't price fixed. The prices are the same on and off the dining plan. We ate at these same restaurants before the dining plan existed. We eat them (plus newer ones) because we like them. Again, I addressed this in my post.

    I said in my post (it really seems like you skimmed not read) that we wouldn't buy the DDP OOP, but that's simply because the food costs have become outrageous no matter how you slice it. It still does save us money, but paying the buffet costs every night is not something we want to do, on the DDP or not. That doesn't mean the DDP doesn't still save slightly over paying for the restaurants we like OOP. It just means we would sacrifice going to them because they are crazy.

    Lastly, free dining is the better deal for my family. There was no RD available for our resort this trip (or it was something tiny). We are 5 Disney adults. It takes a huge room discount for us to eat even close to the way we like to that would make FD not worth it. For us, 35% on a rack rate of $700-800 a night was the point at which the RD is more beneficial.

    I had already stated that it is not easy to save money on the DDP, but it is not impossible like you stated. It depends entirely on how you would eat off the DDP. Like I said though, seems like you only skimmed my post. You are obviously one of those people who are convinced that there is no possible way that DDP or FD can work for a family, so I think I'm wasting my time here.
     
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  3. ML_LovesDisney

    ML_LovesDisney DIS Veteran

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    You have to look at it for your family, but the DDP stopped making sense for us about 2 years ago with the price increase. If it was still 2010 pricing per day, I would still get it. But now, we save about $80 with the DDP so it no longer makes sense (we wouldn't normally order dessert).
     
  4. KaLyn

    KaLyn DIS Veteran

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    I have done research, thank you. Hours and hours, and likely days at this point. Actually. I went over each menu of where we are eating at, figuring out what we would typically eat (typically, not the most expensive) at a restaurant and adding it up. Still coming up with a $200+ savings. I believe it's easier to come ahead when you have more kids than adults. It all depends on your family and eating style. It's not one-size fits all, I will say that. It may be harder for some groups to save money on it, but it's not impossible for everyone as you have assumed.

    This! Spot on! :)
     
  5. lugnut33

    lugnut33 DIS Veteran

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    "Save up to 15%" is what the advert says, but add in a 18% gratuity and now you're down 3%.
     
  6. dominiondad

    dominiondad Mouseketeer

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    We went last summer and did not use the DDP. I carefully tracked how much we spent on food and after our 8 day stay, calculated that paying OOP saved us a total of $100 over the DDP. We did not eat cheap - 4 character meals and Jiko were in the mix, but my family also doesn't eat much until noon.
     
  7. Nahanni

    Nahanni Mouseketeer

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    For a 7 night stay, our family (2A & 2C) can "save" about $330 by eating what is provided by the DDP and go home with a bag full of QS cookies and snacks.

    Eating OOP at the same locations but changing how we eat would actually save us about $50 compared to DDP, however, adults would be limited to tap water and no snacks (with limited snacks for children and me listening to "dad, why can't we have popcorn/popsicle?" - because we can buy a box from the supermarket for the cost of a snack)

    The year we went OOP, we actually saved a lot more because we did not go to any of the character meals or buffets and we cooked most dinners. The kids actually preferred this but we have decided we'll do DDP until the oldest is a Disney adult.
     
  8. Tinkerbelle's Mom

    Tinkerbelle's Mom <font color=purple>Will clean houses for tags!<br>

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    DD and I will be making a return trip to WDW in June. This is the first time we are going since she became a Disney adult. Its the first time we won't be doing the DDP. Because she doesn't eat like an adult (only orders kids meals)and it will cost us more $ to use the plan then it would to pay OOP.

    I will miss the prepaid part of the plan. I liked being able to go on vacation with her and say yes without stressing about the cost. This time I am just going to have to put the food $ aside instead of doing a pre-paid plan.

    I really wish Disney had a Junior cost option between kids and adults.
     
  9. serene56

    serene56 DIS Veteran

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    I didnt find this to be the case when we went OOP in Dec. Kids were told one snack per day-- so if they wanted the popcorn or a ice cream-- it was their choice.
    and we would never even have used a credit to buy a water.
     
  10. hill6

    hill6 DIS Veteran

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    We are doing Deluxe Dining in May. We are going to Narcoossees. Our meals will be over $100 per person and cost us two credits each. So one credit for each of us that day will be free.

    We are doing CRT, 'Ohana, character breakfast, Biergarten and Via Napoli. All of which will cover cost of the dining plan for each meal. It may be close for 50s Primetime and Yak and Yeti.

    I will pay out of pocket for meals that are not worth it which will most likely be breakfast.

    I think most days the snacks will be free for us.
     
  11. Skylarr29

    Skylarr29 <font color=blue>Oh Darn it, I was 'forced' to buy

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    While there are a lot of quick service places where desserts would not be ordered, I think there a lot where people would, in fact, happily, order desserts. Les Halles, Kringla, Sunshine seasons, resort food courts, Starring rolls, Boardwalk Bakery etc.

    I personally think that people who claim free dining isn't free, must be doing the math wrong. It might not be the best deal for everyone, but it is, indeed, free and quite a good deal for some people.

    Room price for our September trip with free dining at POR is $191 before tax. The highest room discount I've seen there is 30% (usually less but we will use it for arguments sake). That equates to $57.30 off per night. Free dining discount is $173.96 per night (two adults, three children). That is an absolute no brain-er.
     
  12. chinarider

    chinarider DIS Veteran

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    So, I ran my numbers on the "seeyareelsoon" spread sheet. If we go with the high end of pricing , base on our restaurants, the DDP would save us about $150, if we were at the average price point, it would pretty much break even. With that being said, It has us rearranging our park plans to eat in Epcot 2 extra times and we are staying at POP so, the question is , is that more running around then I want to do. My DD19 would probably strangle me if she werent away at college because she is tired of me asking, texting etc and at this point all I get is , "I don't care"-which we all know she will when we are on vacation. I also, ran the spreadsheet using some of the lower cost places that I was bypassing by way of the DDP. I put in the high price and we have 14 TS and 7
    CS and it comes up about the same as if I had the 11 TS on the DDP. I did put in 100% for drinks, 100% for dessert and also did include 33% for appetizers- this gets us to places like Tonys- have it priced for dinner (or Plaza ), Liberty Tree Tavern ( lunch) , Sci -Fi ( lunch),Wave-lunch and we give up some CS and Biergarten and Tutto- I would need to add in the cost for the mugs (because I know we would need at least one) to really make the equations comparable . If paying OOP we would switch Chefs and Sanaa to lunch (since cheaper ) but, still include them in our plans. Having relaxing dinners in Epcot at the end of the day is not necessarily a bad thing but, if it takes an hour plus just to get there at the end of a long day ( we're early risers) and then there's the trip back to POP, is it really worth it I think I need to look at the planning. However, if we go with the OOP route, we would have more ADR's and that makes the days less flexible. Going the OOP route I think would give us more continuity with our park flows and daily plans. I also think it provides more food ( but either way there's plenty). Going with the DDP, we would be trying some more items and different food so, I'm still in a pickle... what's a girl to do?? Thanks for letting me vent!!!
     
  13. ilovemk76

    ilovemk76 DIS Veteran

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    But it is not free. It maybe a better discount for your family but it is just that, a discount. Free would be paying 30% off and then Disney saying, here is free food that you get too.
     
  14. morethananyonex

    morethananyonex DIS Veteran

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    Going by that logic, it's only free dining if you give Disney no money for anything. By that logic, it still isn't free if you pay anything, even the discounted rate. If they require you to pay any money at all, it still wouldn't be free. Free would be Disney sending food to my house at their expense without requiring anything out of me.

    The arguing about semantics over free dining is silly. Some people just can't admit it can be a good deal (not you, ilovemk) so they need to try to make people feel stupid for "falling" for the deal. Of course it's a discount, but it's no less valid than any other discount Disney gives. It's like saying 30% a room isn't actually 30% off because Disney requires you to take 30% off the rack rate, not a discounted rate.
     
  15. Skylarr29

    Skylarr29 <font color=blue>Oh Darn it, I was 'forced' to buy

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    That makes no sense. It is free, I paid $0 for it, 0=free :confused3 It may or may not be the best discount for someone, but it is still free. How is it only free if you also get a 30% discount on your room?
     
  16. ahorse42

    ahorse42 Earning My Ears

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    Okay... Everyone seems to be on one side or the other.

    Basically it comes down to this.

    1. Do you need/want to save money?
    IF YES, Pay your own way, set your own limits and don't over-spend
    IF NO, Get the DDP. Chose which one fits (Basic or Deluxe) how often you eat when walking all day and trying to fit in your activities. Plan according to YOUR family where and when you'll eat.

    2. Do you WANT to control what dinning experience you attend and not have to tell your kids what they can or can't order because of the price?
    IF YES, Pay your own way, set your own limits and don't over-spend
    IF NO, Get the DDP. No worries. Most Everything is covered inside of your meal plan that you could possibly want. Don't forget to use up all of your credits before you leave with snacks for the plane/car trip home.

    3. Do you want to worry about having enough money to be able to eat one last time in the park by the end of your trip because you spent all of your money elsewhere or on other foods and "extras"?
    IF YES, Pay your own way, set your own limits and don't over-spend.
    IF NO, Get the DDP. No worries. Food is always available if not at a pre-scheduled sit-down, then always at a window service.

    It's basically what you want to worry about on vacation. Not everyone is comfortable with the DDP or the OOP options. DDP gives you peace of mind and the family a LOT less stress during your vacation. IF you are a well organized planner and your family is willing to follow your every command, then go for the OOP (mine's not and I'm NOT the best organizer because once you get there...life happens and lines and the...let's go do that real quick happens and before you know it your best laid plans to NOT spend or do this or do that is out the window!)

    My opinion is to take the upgrade to Deluxe if you are going to do the DDP. We LOVED every minute of every day at every dinning experience we did because there was NO worries on cost or what you could and couldn't eat/drink/have.

    I have also gone OOP and had no problems but we adjusted our thoughts on spending and did a lot of in-room eating and stayed off Disney. We lost so much time that year though going back and forth that 5 days were not enough and we regretted not staying on Disney and the dinning plan after we experienced it the next time we visited.

    Again, this is just my opinion based off of our last two stays with 5 people.

    Happy Planning!

    :goodvibes
     
  17. KaLyn

    KaLyn DIS Veteran

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    THANK YOU!
    Can I please give you an award?
     
  18. DvF Diva

    DvF Diva Mouseketeer

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    For us, it is a waste of money. It is just too much food for us.

    With 3 adults and 1 child, we had four full days to eat (arrived too late on arrival day to use our planned QS credit) and still had 6 leftover snack credits and 3 leftover QS credits to use up on departure day. Had we arrived earlier, we would've used our QS credits up in a smarter fashion, I think, and maybe used up about two more snack credits. That's still four left over!

    We blew some of our QS credits on the power pack lunches (really a box of snacks) for DS3 as a way to use up credits. For $5.49, it is a waste of a QS credit, to be honest. But it was just too much food for us otherwise.

    We did a "Free Dining" package.
    I think being on DDP covered about $623 in meals (what we would have paid OOP).
    Tickets' "value" was $771.06 (three of the four of us didn't actually need them because we were starting annual passes, but at least they will be good for a couple days should we go some time right after our APs expire).
    That meant we paid about $217 for 4 nights in a Moderate which ran for about $100/nite (pre-tax) rack rate.
    Thus, I calculate that to be about a $218 savings once tax is added to the room rate.

    That number seems to be in same ballpark as other numbers I've seen around.

    We will be unlikely to do DDP again unless it is part of a package where we're getting an extra room on top of what we've already booked.

    HTH!
     
  19. ilovemk76

    ilovemk76 DIS Veteran

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    An award for insulting the OOP people? She called them controlling. That is no different than calling the people on the DDP pig who want to stuff their faces.

    We use the TIW card. We never worry about what something costs we never run out of money at the end of the trip. It is not because we used the TIW card. It is because we have slack in our every day and vacation budget.
     
  20. sharonabe

    sharonabe DIS Veteran

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    EXCUSE ME!!!

    1. NO I do not need/want to save money. I DO want to spend my money wisely and I can spend what the DDP costs and eat WAY more food than the DDP would give me.

    2. NO I do not need to control my family or tell my kids no. They can eat whatever they want and STILL not spend as much as the DDP would cost my family,

    3. NO I do not worry about having enough money on my last day to eat. I know at the end of my trip we will have all eaten exactly what we wanted and my family will have spent LESS money than your family did!!

    BUT that is MY family and how MY family does Disney. There is no one-plan, one-way that fits every family. Can we give advice and share how we all do it to help others, yes we can. But please do not make such blanket statements as you did as if it goes for everyone out there.
     
  21. zy144622

    zy144622 Mouseketeer

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    I agree we save money as well. We prefer buffets/AYCTE.just easier with 2 hungry kids that want to eat NOW! In addition we have a 2 year old so he eats free at these locations. I have used the calculators and we do come out ahead with SPD deal and just about even at rack rate. I may choose OOP if rack rate is ever the only option. Not sure though we have traveled twice now with SPD.
     

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