Deluxe Dining Plan

Discussion in 'Disney Restaurants' started by constancefamily, Dec 12, 2012.

  1. 3pletprincesses

    3pletprincesses DIS Veteran

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    We always do it. We tend to do early breakfast and signature dinner. As a family of 5 including 3 children we usually save around $500. We don't find it to be too much food and the left over snacks are always appreciated to take a few Disney snacks back home. Character meals tend to be expensive therefor makes it worth our while. Yes some find it a waste of time to do character meals and signature meals but to use it's a way to save time as we are not waiting in line in the hot weather to seea character and signatures are our discussion moment when we talk about the day, what to do tomorrow and so on. We also love our Appetizers and desserts. We usually end up sharing our dessert. The girls also share often their signature meals ( 2 meals for 3 kids, light eater) and will often share a lunch QS between the 3 of them. Now ask me when they are all Disney adults and still light eaters and I'm sure my answer will be different
     
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  3. nkereina

    nkereina Last chance to lose your keys.

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    If money was no issue, absolutely! We did DxDP on our last trip and loved it. Yes, it was a lot of food but it was great to make all the ADRs I wanted and to stop for a QS or a snack when we wanted, and not have to keep track of credits because we had more than enough. It was truly "all inclusive" and we didn't pay OOP for one food item. We did have credits left over which we were able to convert to snack credits and use to bring home things like rice krispie treats, etc. Because of the amount of left over credits, it makes more sense for us financially to do regular DDP and pay OOP for anything we want above and beyond.
     
  4. bdklein

    bdklein DIS Veteran

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    Agreed. Did it this past August. Made so much more sense to us. And still did 2 dinner shows, CRT, lobster at Narcosses, etc. But didn't have to get a dessert I didn't want. Didn't want refillable mug. Didn't want anything but water (except for wine/beer) with meals. If money no object, why restrict yourself to a "Plan". Will probably spend around the same amount of money anyway. But if I had kids under 3 or even under 10, or had kids 10+ who eat like adults, I might feel differently. Paying for DDP or DDxP for a 12 year old who eats like a child doesn't make financial sense. Nor does giving Disney my money days in advance for food I did not eat.
     
  5. CraigInPA

    CraigInPA Since June 1974

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    Wow! I guess you really don't like the dining plans! And, I guess my family "over-eats" and doesn't miss ordering everything in the deluxe entitlements, since we regularly save 25-35% off the out of pocket price. We've done deluxe dining several times and keep every receipt, so the savings is real and absolutely quantifiable.


    One can only obtain a TIW card if they are a member of DVC or have an annual pass. If you are an out of Florida resident and want to buy an AP, the cost is over $600. To determine the payback minimum, you'd have to add the premium paid for the AP over the price of individual tickets to the price of the TIW card. So, for non-Florida residents staying 10 days, you'd have to spend $1800+ on food before you'd break even.

    The original question was whether DxDP was something you'd take if money isn't an object. For my family, while the cost is substantial to buy DxDP for a 10 day trip of 6 people, it's still a no-brainer. We're buying DxDP in order to use all of the entitlements: character dining, table service dining, and signature restaurants because it's cheaper to do that than pay out of pocket or to buy an AP and TIW.
     
  6. BEASLYBOO

    BEASLYBOO <font color=deeppink>It's part of the charm<br><fo

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    Exactly, then you could order what you want, appetizer, dessert or not and never feel like you were wasting food or credits! That's the real issue for me with these plans, I can't eat that way and much less orchestrate ADR's so far in advance! It takes away every bit of spontaneity!

    I hate to waste food, in the times we live in where so many go hungry, I can't bring myself to do it!
     
  7. JZCubed

    JZCubed DIS Veteran

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    I cannot get the math to show a consistent 35% discount by using the Dining Plan unless you go out of your way to order the most expensive items, eat at least 2 sit-down meals each day, and/or re-fill your mug regularly.

    Can you really eat over $100 of food every day? It's not so easy.

    CA Grill (and most Signatures), Average:
    Appetizer - $14 + Entree - $40 + Dessert - $12 + Beverage - $4 = $70

    Of course, if you eat at Narcoossee's every night, you could eat $100 in lobster. But beyond that, you need to eat an additional $30/day to get to $100. This requires an additional Table Service meal. Most proponents of the DxDP suggest they do Character Meals to satisfy the need to spend the additional $30 for breakfast or lunch. Like I said, it requires [2] sit-down meals each day to get you to $100 of spending. Making and managing all those ADR's is not a vacation for some people.

    Oh, I know I missed the snacks with a daily $10 value ($5 x 2 snacks). So now I'm back to - you need to eat [2] sit-down meals (and all 3-courses of the most expensive choices) to break even....and then you need to consume [2] snacks each day to get ahead.

    So let's look at the math again:

    Unless you try very hard and/or enjoy eating at least [2] sit-down meals each day - you pay $100 for what might be a bit more than $110 worth of value. Of course, you should also factor in gratuity. And think about the cost of both food and gratuity for food you might not have ordered had you not purchased the DxDP.

    As to Tables in Wonderland (TiW), I cannot argue with the cost analysis to non-DVC members or AP holders. However, before I'd jump into paying for a DxDP, I would consider the cost of 1 person in my party obtaining an Annual Pass to receive room, dining, and shopping discounts.
     
  8. JZCubed

    JZCubed DIS Veteran

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    I'm not sure your math is correct.

    An Annual Pass might cost $600, but paying for a 10-day Park Hopper is $400. For the additional $200, this hypothetical person can buy the AP and receive the room discounts (up to 35% at Deluxe Resorts), dining discounts (10% in many places; 20% with $125 TiW), and shopping discounts (10% off at just about every store). The 'hidden' discounts in an Annual Pass may very well be cost effective for a group staying for as long as 10 days.

    If this hypothetical person purchased an AP + TiW for a 10-day stay, with certain assumptions, the savings are comparable to any discount package that you can purchase from Disney (whether or not Dining Plan is included).
     
  9. sweeteypie1118

    sweeteypie1118 DIS Veteran

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    We did deluxe this past Thanksgiving trip. It was our first time doing deluxe. We got free dining, then upgraded to deluxe. We always ate 2 meals a day, not 3. We would do a lunch and a late signature restaurant, or a breakfast and sig. restaurants. I don't feel that it took up too much time, but I was definitely stuffed! We used up all our snack credits. We would pick up pastries often and have them the next morning for a quick breakfast. Healthy..I know :lmao: I'm not sure I would do it again though since I did always feel stuffed and passed up on a lot of snacks I would have liked to try in the middle of the day. I definitely wouldnt be able to do deluxe in the summer when its so hot. The heat really takes away my appetite. I'm glad I did do it this time though since it gave me the opportunity to try so many signature restaurants.
     
  10. nkereina

    nkereina Last chance to lose your keys.

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    100% agree... we did Deluxe in September and the heat really took a lot out of us. We ended up cancelling ADRs last minute because we were not hungry, even though we had lunch several hours before. I agree that it didn't take us much time to eat a TS breakfast or lunch and then a later TS dinner. I wouldn't want to do 3 in a day though.
     
  11. IrishPixies

    IrishPixies Earning My Ears

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    I'm on the DxDP this week I'm thoroughly enjoying it. I enjoy eating good food at nicer restaurants so I am doing an early table service lunch and a late signature dinner each night. Yes, it is a lot of food but when I eat out at home (not often) I order an appetizer and entree and usually get a dessert somewhere along the way. I'm on vacation which means I want to eat special meals and try new things (a burger from Cosmic Rays isn't my personal choice). The deluxe plan lets me do this without thinking about cost.

    I hit the break even point with lunch today and I've got 6 meal credits and 9 snack credits left to use. And I have not ordered the most expensive items at most meals. I expect a $150-200 savings this week.
     
  12. EMAW_KSU

    EMAW_KSU DIS Veteran

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    We have done the deluxe dining plan for all of our trips. We were there last week for seven nights two adults and one child. The total of our meals was $1715.26 not including snacks. The cost of the deluxe plan was $1363.81.
     
  13. PrincessMe

    PrincessMe Mouseketeer

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    We did the deluxe dining plan a few years ago. I hated it. Way too much food plus I felt like we were always running to our next ADR (even though I was still stuffed from the last meal). We ate at signature restaurants most nights to use up the credits but it was still too much.

    OOP works best for us. We ate exactly what we wanted (didn't skimp on desserts, appetizers, snacks, or alcohol) and spent about the same as a regular dining plan would have cost.

    All that said, if I had free dining, I would probably upgrade to Deluxe. I would just convince DH that we were under no obligation to eat every meal, course, and snack available.
     
  14. JZCubed

    JZCubed DIS Veteran

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    So after eating two sit down meals each day of your vacation ($75 dinner + $35 other meals), you managed to get about 20% savings (before calculating your snacks). That's good.

    But would you have eaten all those calories had you not prepaid?

    As I've said again and again, the math for DxDP works if you're willing to eat at least two Signature meals a day (pretty much needing two ADR's each day) and the rest of the folks in your party has to be OK with that too. If you should skip one meal, then nearly all your savings are gone.

    I'm not suggesting that the Dining Plan is not a possible savings. It is. And I might also suggest that it's convenient for ease of use and never having to review your dining charges. Regardless, I still believe that the Dining Plan is not a great value for most people.
     
  15. melissarose

    melissarose DIS Veteran

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    Wow. I must really like to eat. I am pumped about how much food I am going to get! My boyfriend and I are going deluxe in February and we have a sit down meal planned three times a day almost every day! No signatures, just breakfast, lunch, and dinner at a TS restaurant. I think it's awesome and I can't wait! We also planned our ADRs around where we were going to be so we won't be travelling all over disney to get our meals, which I would definitely find annoying. I can understand why people don't want to do that.
     
  16. IrishPixies

    IrishPixies Earning My Ears

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    Every person/family/group of travellers has their own idea of what makes for a good experience, use of money, and use of time for them. If you don't like the dining plans, don't purchase them. But I happen to really enjoy using the deluxe plan and will do so again. My preferences for how I used my plan didn't take away from my desired park time and I'm realizing a savings of about $200 for me alone for 6 nights.

    Obviously, the DxDP works for some but not all. I don't think anyone suggested it was a value for all.
     
  17. CalSea12

    CalSea12 Desperately needs a dose of the magic!

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    I LOVE LOVE LOVE my DXDP!!! I literally have to have it every time I go to WDW, or honestly I wont go...shocking huh.

    I usually do 2-3 sit down meals a day, sometimes I will sub a CS. I think the dining is a big part of my vacation. I love the food at WDW and I love apps. I have too many TS I have to go to not to do the DxDP.

    I usually do a 7:30 character meal, lunch at about 1pm, and dinner after the parks close. I do tend to gain weight on my vacations but I just work hard to lose before and after.

    Oh and believe me I totally rack up the cost, so its so worth it.
     
  18. shelbyf31

    shelbyf31 Mouseketeer

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    We did the deluxe dining plan in January 2012 and we are doing it again in May 2013. We love having a TS for breakfast (always a character meal because we have small kids) and for dinner. It is a nice break at dinner time to just sit and relax. Also we go through the snack credits, usually for the adults it is in drinks.
     
  19. aaarcher86

    aaarcher86 DIS Veteran

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    I don't do any signature meals and still come out ahead, not including snack credits/cost.

    If the dining plan is saving you money, it really doesn't matter if someone would have ordered dessert or not had they been paying OOP. Would someone have eaten all those calories paying OOP? I wouldn't have, no... but I always would have been paying MORE for LESS.

    If you do a cost comparison on what you'd pay OOP versus the DP and the DP saves you money, then you're getting something extra you wouldn't get normally and paying less overall.

    People who enjoy the dining plans are the first ones to advise others to do a cost comparison and the value is entirely dependent on how/where you'll eat.
     
  20. Peter Fan

    Peter Fan Peter Fan

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    I'm on vaca it doesn't matter how much I eat or how much it costs.
     
  21. EMAW_KSU

    EMAW_KSU DIS Veteran

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    I agree if you are not going to use at least 2 table service meals per day the deluxe plan does not make sense.

    For us signature meals are not the best value for the credit. The best value per credit on the last trip was Tepen Edo.
     

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