Does purchasing an annual pass mean we can never get a dining plan (or free dining)?

Discussion in 'Disney Dining Plan' started by Magpie, Apr 12, 2013.

  1. Magpie

    Magpie DIS Veteran

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    We're planning to get annual passes, but it occurred to me that if we do we'll always have to book room-only versus booking room-and-ticket packages. And as far as I know, the dining plan is only ever offered with the packages.

    Which means that if free dining is offered again this fall, we won't be able to take advantage of it. Is this correct?
     
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  3. DebbieB

    DebbieB DIS Veteran

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    You can get the paid dining plan with an AP, it becomes a ticketless package. You can get it with an AP discount room.

    Free dining, you would still have to buy a 2 day MYW ticket. You can hold that ticket and apply it to your next AP renewal (or new purchase).
     
  4. Magpie

    Magpie DIS Veteran

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    Thank you, this is helpful! Would both of us need to buy 2 day MYW tickets to make us both eligible for free dining? And why is it 2 days, versus 1 day tickets? Is that just the minimum to qualify?

    I guess, if it's offered in December, we'd just have to compare the relative cost of paying for a dining plan with an AP discount room, or getting MYW packages with free dining and using the extra tickets to pay down the next years' APs.

    This is kind of exciting, because this may be the first December we travel down in which free dining is even offered. (Oh, I hope it is!) I've always wanted to try the dining plan, but it's never been practical. :hyper:
     
  5. tiggore91

    tiggore91 Tiggore91

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    2 days is just the minimum to qualify.

    I wouldn't get my hopes up for free dining, it has yet to be offered this year to the public.
     
  6. Magpie

    Magpie DIS Veteran

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    Still hopeful, but it would be just my luck that the one year it's practical, and when we're NOT travelling at the same time as the Pop Warner kids (it's always blacked out when they're there) would be the one year it's not offered. :p

    Still, I'm glad to know that we can add it on to an AP discounted room.
     
  7. amandals2007

    amandals2007 DIS Veteran

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    awe i think they will for the fall, its the slowest time of the year! im holding out hope because ill be there in dec!
     
  8. tiggore91

    tiggore91 Tiggore91

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    We went last year from Nov 29-Dec 8th. Thankfully free dining ended Nov 29th, so we got it for our entire stay!! Don't get me wrong, I really, really, really hope they announce free dining as we are going this year in early September. It would save us about $800!!! But from what I have been seeing with the discounts, the days of free dining might be over. :worried:

    Let's all just hope and pray though!!!
     
  9. MHSweb79

    MHSweb79 DIS Veteran

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    Depending on where you stay, the room discount can often be a better deal than free dining, which requires a full-priced package (especially with just two people in the room).

    They've chipped away at the dining plan so much that it's often a chore just to break even. Remember when it used to include appetizer AND tips?
     
  10. amandals2007

    amandals2007 DIS Veteran

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    You are right it's not as good anymore but we still save soooo much on the dining plan because we eat at the more expensive restaurants and get things we wouldn't normally get. We always end out ahead with the plan. Save every receipt and do the math
     
  11. dadddio

    dadddio DIS Veteran

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    It's certainly possible that I am incorrect, but I don't think that you can take the AP room discount and get free dining.

    As I understand it, as long as your first day falls within the free dining period, you get free dining for the entire trip. Alternatively, if you arrive the day before free dining starts, 'no soup for you' for the entire trip. (Although in that situation, I would do a separate reservation for that first day so I could get free dining for the rest.)
    One theory is that even though 'free dining' might not be offered that they will offer other package deals which include dining and result in similar savings. This might be their answer to the two-day ticket workaround.
     
  12. addicted2dizney

    addicted2dizney DIS Veteran

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    ahhh those were the days! They even allowed a full sized box of entemans donuts at the food court to be used as a snack credit! I miss those days!

    Just heard a travel segment on one of the travel shows and they truly doubt that free dining would be offered this year due to the amount of money invested in the park with New Fantasyland. I was hoping for FD as well.. I have an AP but have a ten day package booked now with a 2 day base ticket in place just in the event the offer it.
     
  13. ElizabethG

    ElizabethG When it comes to havoc, nobody wreaks like me!

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    Don't forget that with an AP you can buy a TIW card. With that and a room discount, you can save much more. You even save on your adult beverages.
     
  14. Allison

    Allison DIS Veteran

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    Just to clarify, you would not be able to add free dining onto an already discounted room. You can't stack discounts. You could pay for dining.
     
  15. kgsmith

    kgsmith DIS Veteran

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    Ah, yes. We haven't gotten a dining plan since then. We've found the TIW card to be much more of a savings for us. We got three trips (March 2012, August 2012, and March 2013) with one card! :thumbsup2
     
  16. dadddio

    dadddio DIS Veteran

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    Who are these non-public people that were offered free dining? j/k

    I assume that what you meant is that 'bounce back' offers for 2013 free dining were made, but it hasn't been opened up as a regular offer.
     
  17. Crystal824

    Crystal824 DIS Veteran

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    We found TIW and renting points at a deluxe with an Ap to be a much better deal than staying at a moderate with free dining.
     
  18. Magpie

    Magpie DIS Veteran

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    Oh, I got that! I just meant I was relieved to learn that you could get dining, period. I had thought you needed to buy a room-and-ticket package in order to be able to add on dining. So I didn't know if AP holders could get the dining plan at all.

    Next question, everyone!

    We're planning 3 trips in the next twelve months. May 26 - June 1, December 1 - 7, and sometime in early May next year. That's why we're planning to upgrade our tickets to APs when we get there next month.

    I have three lunch ADRs for our trip in May, but other than that we plan to eat breakfast in our rooms (yay, porridge!) and dinner at quick service. Would a Table in Wonderlands card be useful to us?
     
  19. ElizabethG

    ElizabethG When it comes to havoc, nobody wreaks like me!

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    A TIW card is good for 13 months (about). So, you buy it in May and use it for all your trips from May through next May. So, yes, buy it in May.

    I bought our last one on 10/19/2012. It expires 11/30/2013.
     
  20. Jestocost

    Jestocost DIS Veteran

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    A TiW card costs $100 for an AP holder and is good for 13 months, so the general rule if thumb is if you will spend more than $500 at participating locations during that time you will save money with the TiW. Note that the card is good for food and beverage (including alcohol) purchases at virtually all TS restaurants and bars, at the food courts at the value resorts, and at the three WDW-owned CS restaurants (Pizzafari, Flame Tree BBQ and Restaurantosaurus) at AK.
     
  21. Allison

    Allison DIS Veteran

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    It's a matter of doing the math. Make an estimate of how much you would spend and what the discount would be on that spending and compare it to the cost of the TIW card.
     

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