But it's just so convenient!

Discussion in 'Disney Dining Plan' started by maddiebee, Jan 8, 2014.

  1. maddiebee

    maddiebee DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2013
    Messages:
    948
    We really love the dining plan. As someone who is constantly pinching pennies and trying to get myself the cheapest thing on every menu, I love not having to feel guilty for wanting the most expensive item. I love not really having to think about it. On the other hand, I sometimes feel pressure to get the most expensive thing, over what I want, to make sure I'm getting my money's worth.

    The thing is, after looking at every menu I think we'd want to dine at and doing my own calculations, AND using a dining plan calculator, we end up saving money paying out of pocket, about 50-150$ or so.

    The penny pincher in me wants to save that 50-150, but also wants to be carefree at Disney and tell them to keep the steaks coming and to not look at prices.

    Is the convenience worth that 50-150? I'm going to over think it all either way, but is there a good middle ground?

    Do I want to save money or do I want convenience? Help!!
     
  2. Avatar

    Google AdSense Guest Advertisement


    to hide this advert.
  3. momofmaz

    momofmaz Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2013
    Messages:
    407
    The convenience wins out for us. I like the idea of having it paid for ahead of time and getting dessert. I know not everyone wants two desserts a day but I like the option. As soon as I narrow down our choices and look over menus I’m going to use a spreadsheet I found to do a comparison but only because I’m crazy and want the Deluxe DP!!!

    Second thought…probably not the best person to answer this question. . .
    :stir:
     
  4. TDC Nala

    TDC Nala <font color=red>1937, what a year that was<br><fon Moderator

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2001
    Messages:
    59,035
    If you're asking me, no, it's absolutely not worth it just for the perceived convenience. personally I order whatever I want at the time and just pay for it. But there are a lot of people who are just not comfortable doing that, and if you are one of them you may be able to put a personal value on the plan that goes above strict monetary value.
     
  5. bbak3030

    bbak3030 Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2013
    Messages:
    406
    I was set against NOT getting the dining plan. But I ran some numbers and found myself choosing the cheaper item. I also KNEW the sticker shock would get me no matter how much I prepared myself. So I just added the plan. I'm actually tired of thinking about it. Lol. So to me, the answer is YES.
     
  6. audrey2580

    audrey2580 DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2003
    Messages:
    734
    I too am all about saving money but I hate carrying that much cash around or using my debit card and being SHOCKED when I get home at how much all the food cost. Yes I would probably save money paying OOP but I know I would share a meal, get a cup of tap water, or pick something I maybe didn't want just to save a few $$. Its vacation I say go for it!!!
     
  7. maddiebee

    maddiebee DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2013
    Messages:
    948
    See, I think this is my main line of thinking. Even if I were to say, get prepaid gift cards for the estimated amount I think I'll be paying, I still think that part of me would be too tempted to hold myself back a bit at the beginning to make sure I have enough to get me through the whole week. At the same time, I feel the same way about using my dining plan credits. We do end up paying for a couple meals out of pocket, mainly because I don't like sharing :rolleyes1 Maybe I should just do the OOP meals first so I'm carefree the rest of the week?

    I guess something else I should add, is that I got a great price on stay at the Poly but we wouldn't be able to have the dining plan with the discount we'd get. So do I stay at the Poly without the dining plan or stay at a mod (most likely POR) with it?

    Thanks for all the help! Work is very slow this week so I'm keeping myself awake by overanalyzing every part of my trip!
     
  8. tarheelmjfan

    tarheelmjfan <font color=red>Proud Redhead<br><font color=blue>

    Joined:
    May 10, 2001
    Messages:
    7,849
    There are many things I'd rather do with $50 -$150 than spend it on perceived convenience. That's like throwing money away to me. I'd much prefer going into a restaurant & ordering the most expensive item (if I wanted it) knowing I was still saving money. I don't see the mentality in being unwilling to order more expensive items when paying OOP, but being willing to spend more than necessary on the meal in advance. Money paid in advance & money paid at time of service both come out of the same bank account. Personally, I'll keep the $50 - $150 in my pocket. To me, spending extra for convenience only makes sense if you have plenty of money to blow. Naturally, that's JMO. No offense to anyone who buys DDP for convenience. I just don't understand it. I'd be sitting at the table looking over the menu knowing I paid more in advance than I'd be paying if I waited & ordered exactly what I wanted. I'd be annoyed with myself.
     
  9. jahber

    jahber DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2012
    Messages:
    1,458
    You could do a gift card in the amount you *think* you'll spend on food (based on what looks good on the menu now) and then earmark an extra $50-$100 in cash for splurges if something expensive sounds appetizing once you're there and the gift card runs out. If you don't use it, spend it on souvenirs or take it home. I don't see how that's any less convenient than overpaying for something when you don't have to. Personally I'd just add it all (including the extra buffer amount) to one gift card, but that's because I know I'll be back to WDW or shop online and use it eventually.
     
  10. kathie859

    kathie859 DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2005
    Messages:
    3,521
    The "convenience" is a cost. The question is "Is this convenience worth it to me?"

    The DP doesn't work well for how we eat. Desserts at lunch AND dinner? Not a good idea. I like an appetizer with my evening meal but unless we go for the more expensive "delux" plan it's not included. But maybe the DP works for your eating habits and the higher price tag isn't a budget buster for you :hippie: but it's only a question you can answer.
     
  11. maddiebee

    maddiebee DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2013
    Messages:
    948
    All the dessert is something that I hadn't really thought about. I can't eat gluten so I didn't end up eating dessert at most places we went or just threw the gluten free cookie in my bag and forgot about it.

    I think I am leaning toward the gift card. I really appreciate all the help!!
     
  12. mom2AidanAndEli

    mom2AidanAndEli DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2013
    Messages:
    1,704
    Well, it could be argued that a lot of the spending we do is for convenience. This might be convenient for some, not for others.

    People rent cars even though they're staying on property, for the convenience. People stay at monorail resorts so they can use the monorail, for the convenience. People pay for Early Bird Check In on Southwest, for the convenience.

    It's all about individual priorities. Some people don't mind spending a little more if it makes them more relaxed on vacation.

    Me, I'll take Free Dining any day!
     
  13. wiigirl

    wiigirl DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2012
    Messages:
    15,980
    :thumbsup2
     
  14. Chuckers

    Chuckers Missing my day trips to Disneyland :(

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2010
    Messages:
    1,304
    I've done the platinum dining plan, which was worth it because it comes with all the tours.. and I did 4 tours on it.

    Now that I have done the tours, I do the 1 cs/1 ts plan. Which lets me do my character meals and some fine dining as well as quick breakfasts. Is it more than out of pocket? Maybe, probably, but I know that it's already paid for and I don't need to save $300+ before my trip to pay for meals. It lets me pay for my meals over time, before my trip, as opposed to in lump sum at the end of the trip.
     
  15. Lita

    Lita DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2012
    Messages:
    513
    It's all about convenience for me. I don't penny pinch every line item for vacations. I like the idea of a paid in full vacation before I leave. I like to splurge on vacation and the deluxe dining plan allows me to do that. If I paid out of pocket, I'd be paying attention to the costs too much. I don't care that is isn't a savings. I expect to pay more than typical when I go to theme parks. The package deals just work best for our family. Everything is paid for up front and not much to think about while there.
     
  16. momofmaz

    momofmaz Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2013
    Messages:
    407
    Exactly! You pay over the course of months instead of throwing 1k down for food for the week. It's all relative but this is how I feel as well.
     
  17. maddiebee

    maddiebee DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2013
    Messages:
    948
    This is another big part of it for me. I'm not super good at setting aside chunks of money but I'm really good about paying bills! I like that including the dining plan with the price of my trip means that I don't have to set aside money for food.

    I have been strongly considering getting gift cards though. Has anyone had experience with doing this instead is getting a dining plan?
     
  18. summersalt

    summersalt DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2007
    Messages:
    1,033
    All year we do everything we can to save... pinch pennies, forgo eating out, you name it! When we go on vacation, we don't want to worry with how much we're spending on food. We like paying in advance and we're willing to pay the few extra bucks not to have to worry about it. Wish alcohol was included in the pay before you go plan. :)
     
  19. Chuckers

    Chuckers Missing my day trips to Disneyland :(

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2010
    Messages:
    1,304
    I am not an alcohol drinker, but I believe you can add alcohol to your meal plan at an extra charge. (However, that may just be for Deluxe and Platinum)
     
  20. GovieMom

    GovieMom DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2007
    Messages:
    2,813
    We are a family of four adults, and my DH can be a cheapskate when it comes to dining out. Since he's the type who voices negative comments on the prices of menu items, there is NO WAY that I'd ever go to WDW for a week without the dining plan. Wish we could get free dining for our upcoming trip, which saves our family a ton. But I went ahead and paid for it; thankfully DH doesn't know how much "that" cost - what he doesn't know won't hurt him. ;)
     
  21. tarheelmjfan

    tarheelmjfan <font color=red>Proud Redhead<br><font color=blue>

    Joined:
    May 10, 2001
    Messages:
    7,849
    It's a matter of perspective. Renting cars can eliminate the need to wait on busses or stand when they do arrive. You also have the ability to go offsite, if you choose. (For what it's worth, we use Disney transportation, but I can see the value in renting cars.) Monorail resorts are convenient for the easy access to MK & Epcot, when the monorail is working properly. For anyone spending most of their time at these parks, they also allow you to push on a stroller & not worry about folding it for the busses. Monorail resorts are also convenient to several good restaurants. (We prefer Epcot resorts, but I see why some people could find Monorail resorts more convenient.) There are definitely advantages to early bird check-in on airlines for many people. IMHO, it's no more convenient to pay for dining at WDW with DDP than it is with room charge or a CC. With the latter options, you don't even have to be concerned with keeping up with credits. I can buy the pay in advance argument, even if I'd rather save money & pay at the time. The convenience argument just doesn't make sense to me. As a matter of fact, I see it as less convenient to feel the need to order what I'm entitled to rather than what I really want for equal or lesser money. Naturally, free dining is a different story all together. It's an easy choice for many families. Anyone staying at a value or moderate (other than singles) or a larger family at a deluxe resort will most likely be better off taking FD for their discount. It's when you're paying for DDP that I think it's loses value in many cases. In the end, it's up to the individual. As far as I'm concerned, people don't need a valid reason for the way they choose to spend their money as long as I'm not paying. I was just voicing my opinion on whether or not I find DDP worth paying more for. Obviously, I don't, but I also don't care what others choose to do.
     

Share This Page